Sunday, 31 March 2013

Review - "The Bells of Saint John"'s back - and managed to take over twitter and score a more than respectable 6.2million in overnight viewing figures.  The return of the show is always hyped beyond belief but this time we also had the third and final "aspect" of Clara Oswald involved - and it could have been a complete mess.  Thankfully, the Moff rather nailed it with this one and "The Bells of Saint John" turned out to be a good, solid and very entertaining romp.

Of course, it wouldn't be the Moff if he didn't take something from everyday life, twist it obscenely and scare the living daylights out of us.  This time - to put another speedbump into the life of Who fans - he chose WiFi.  We rely on WiFi an extraordinary amount - if you just look at the Who fandom for instance, the prequels, trailers and behind the scenes videos all hit the internet first not to mention the sheer amount of Who traffic on social network sites.  In "The Bells of Saint John", the WiFi became some kind of creepy little recruiting device where souls are uploaded and then consumed by the Great Intelligence.  The pre-credits sequence of the episode reinforced our reliance on WiFi with the variety of locations used and Nabile's plea culminating in that very creepy camera pullback on the multitude of trapped souls in the monitor screens.

Another strength of "Doctor Who" - apart from making aspects of everyday life scary in the extreme - is it's ability to merge concepts and places that simply don't seem to belong together.  In a lovely follow up to the prequel, the Doctor has gone off to a "quiet place to think" which, in this case is a monastery in 1207AD (and with Matt's teaser of "paintings" as a clue to the 50th Anniversary special, you have to wonder if there will be any significance to the Doctor's painting of Clara).  The Bells of Saint John of the title are ringing - and I admit to groaning that I hadn't actually worked this out previously.  The Bells of Saint John are, of course, the ringing telephone of the Tardis which is next to the St John Ambulance sticker.  And this is where you get that wonderful merging that only "Doctor Who" can do.  The Doctor answering a telephone in 1207AD and speaking to Clara Oswald in the present day - the juxtaposition of the two shouldn't have worked but, of course it did.

Screencaps - "The Rings of Akhaten" - BBC America Trailer

Screencaps from "The Rings of Akhaten" BBC America Trailer have been uploaded to the Flickr Gallery.   Samples below - right click and open in new tab/window for larger versions - and feel free to take and use:

Screencaps - BBCA Insider - Meet the Doctor...Again

Screencaps from the "BBC America Insider - Meet the Doctor...Again" video have been uploaded to the Flickr Gallery.  Samples below - right click and open in new tab/window for larger versions - feel free to take and use:

Video - "The Rings of Akhaten" - BBC America Trailer

BBC America have their own trailer for "The Rings of Akhaten" - it IS very similar to the BBC version but you can watch it below.  Screencaps later.

"The Bells of Saint John" - Overnight Ratings

"The Bells of Saint John" won it's timeslot last night with an average of 6.2million viewers - making it the third most watched programme of the day after "Saturday Night Takeaway" and "The Voice".

Final BARB ratings will be released next week which, if current trends continue, will see the figures for "The Bells of Saint John" increase dramatically.  The episode is currently number 1 on BBC Iplayer.

Screencaps - "The Rings of Akhaten" Trailer 2

Screencaps from the 2nd of the BBC trailers for "The Rings of Akhaten" are now in the Flickr Gallery.  If a HD version of the first trailer materialises then I'll add those too.  Samples below - right click and open in new tab/window for larger versions - feel free to take and use:

Video - BBC America Doctor Who Insider - Meet the Doctor...Again

BBC America have uploaded their latest "Insider" video - it's called "Meet the Doctor...again".  Screencaps to follow:

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Screencaps - Behind the Scenes of "The Bells of Saint John"

Thank you to the BBC for finally uploading a few things in HD - one of which was the Behind the Scenes of "The Bells of Saint John" video.  Screencaps, therefore, abound.   They're in the Flickr Gallery with samples below.  As usual, right click and open in new tab/window for large versions - and feel free to take and use:

Three Hugo Award Nominations for Doctor Who

Well done, Steven Moffat!  Three episodes of  "Doctor Who" have been nominated in the "Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form" category and they are:

"Asylum of the Daleks"
"The Angels Take Manhattan"
"The Snowmen"

All penned by the Moff himself.  Congratulations, that man.  "Doctor Who" is up against episodes from "Fringe" and "Game of Thrones".

Videos - "The Bells of Saint John" - Behind the Scenes and Next Week Trailers

We're being spoiled again - the BBC have uploaded three new videos.  Two are trailers and one is a behind the scenes of "The Bells of Saint John":

"The Bells of Saint John" - MSN's Spoiler Free Teasers

In the midst of all the chaos, it's worth remembering that we're treated to a new run of eight episodes starting tonight with "The Bells of Saint John".  Lorna Cooper has posted a few teasers on MSN:

  1. The chemistry between Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman is hotter than July.
  2. The Bells of Saint John is set in modern-day London so don't expect to see any famous historical figures.
  3. Look out for the Doctor's new nemesis, the Spoonheads. I must say, they are particularly creepy. I was a tad unnerved while I watched. OK - they're not the Daleks but then, what is?
  4. Despite dying twice already, you will totally buy into this third appearance of the rather mysterious new companion. Clara slips into the role as if she's never been away.
  5. The Bells of Saint John is, like the Christmas episodes, a standalone instalment (albeit with far less schmaltz). If you've never watched Doctor Who, it's a good place to start.
  6. Matt Smith's Doctor has a new wardrobe which I personally describe as Teddy Boy-geek. It really suits him. In fact, I'd go as far as saying, he looks pretty hot... in a nerdy way. (Who is she trying to kid?  He looks hot regardless.)
  7. Colm McCarthy, at the helm of a Doctor Who episode for the first time, will be directing Hollywood action movies (Bond?) soon if this episode is anything to go by. Talk about slick, fast-paced direction! There are also some wonderful visual techniques.
  8. London's new and old iconic landmarks are put to good use in this episode. There is a scene involving the Shard which could be straight out of a James Bond movie. Matt Smith looked as if he was having a blast - and you will too when The Bells of St John airs on Easter Saturday.
"The Bells of Saint John" airs tonight on BBC1 at 6.15pm.

50th Anniversary Special Casting News - Tennant, Piper and Hurt

Well, the new DWM magazine appears to have hit subscribers earlier than it should - and hence, some 50th Anniversary casting news has made it's way onto the internet.

DWM confirms that David Tennant, Billie Piper and John Hurt will feature in the Special with "further casting details a closely guarded secret".

Let's hope we get more Doctors - and not just Ten - appearing with Matt in the Special.

Edit: Official BBC Doctor Who twitter account have just posted photos of David Tennant and Billie Piper with the hashtag #DoctorWho50th - best confirmation you'll get I expect!

EDIT 2 - Official confirmation from the BBC:

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Video - Entertainment Weekly - Matt and Jenna talk 50th Anniversary and more

Another "exclusive" Entertainment Weekly video where Matt and Jenna talk about the 50th Anniversary together with guest star and location wishlists:

Matt Smith to guest on "Victoria Wood's Nice Cup of Tea"

According to BBC One on Tumblr, Matt Smith is to be a guest on the second episode of "Victoria Wood's Nice Cup of Tea".

This new series in which Victoria Wood discovers the hidden history of our favourite beverage starts on Wednesday 10 April 2013 at 9pm.   At the moment, it's uncertain whether episode 2 will air the following day or the following week.

We'll bring you more details when they become available.

Video - "A mysterious wi-fi warning to the world..."

The BBC have uploaded an intriguing little video called "#nabileswarning" and described it as "a mysterious wi-fi warning to the world...":

Videos - Entertainment Weekly - Matt and Jenna talk fans and the Doctor's new outfit

Entertainment Weekly have posted a couple of new videos where Matt and Jenna discuss fans and costumes - the latter with costume designer Howard Burden:

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Video - Daybreak Previews 7B with Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman

Richard Arnold from ITV's "Daybreak" previewed Series 7B this morning.  His report contained interviews with Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman - he also quizzed them about the 50th Anniversary special and mentioned the Doctor's "sausage being revealed..."

Doctor Who Stamps Shatter Royal Mail Sales Records

I think we all knew that, in the 50th Anniversary year of "Doctor Who", a special commemorative release of stamps by the Royal Mail would be popular...but even the Royal Mail themselves have been taken aback by just HOW popular these sets are.

Basically, there have been more pre-orders for the "Doctor Who" Commemorative Stamps than for any other commemorative set produced by the Royal Mail.

Andrew HammondManaging director of the stamps and collectibles division at Royal Mail, said:
Following our launch announcement last year, we've had a fantastic response from the public who seemingly can't wait for the stamps. This shows just how much we all love Doctor Who. The time has come and we are delighted that the stamps are now on sale, meaning fans of all ages can send their letters with one of their favourite Doctors on. This is a fitting tribute to this remarkable 50th anniversary and we hope our stamps will enable people across the UK to feel part of the celebrations of such a national treasure.
It's not just the 11 Doctors who are featured.  There's also a "Miniature Sheet" containing five Special Stamps, with the First Class TARDIS stamp in the middle, surrounded by Second Class stamps featuring an Ood, a Cyberman, a Weeping Angel and a Dalek.  You can buy various stamp sets (including a fabulous postcard sized stamp set) but I'm very impressed by the Presentation Pack in which Gary Russell discusses all 11 incarnations of the Doctor as well as "his most formidable foes".  This set contains all 11 Special Stamps plus the Miniature Sheet.  

These really are quality products - a perfect memento of the Anniversary.  Kudos to both the BBC and the Royal Mail for their hard work and effort in producing these fantastic stamps.  As Fiona EastwoodProduct development director at BBC Worldwide Consumer Products, said:
With the second part to the latest Doctor Who series out on Saturday, these stamps are the perfect way to mark this as well as the 50th anniversary. With all the Doctors to date featured in the set, these stamps showcase the fantastic actors who have played the Time Lord over the last 50 years.
You can get further details on the stamp sets plus the other "Doctor Who" gifts that the Royal Mail has available by following these links:

Doctor Who Commemorative Stamps

Royal Mail Doctor Who Gifts and Collectables

Video - "The Bells of Saint John" clip - "Meet Miss Kizlet"

The BBC have released yet another clip from "The Bells of Saint John" - one wonders if it's their intention to release the entire episode in clip form.  This clip is called "Meet Miss Kizlet":

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

New Competition/Giveaway - Win a "Peladon Tales" DVD Boxset

Our eighth giveaway/competition gives you the chance to win a "Peladon Tales" DVD Boxset.  The boxset contains the two fantastic Jon Pertwee stories - "The Curse of Peladon" and "The Monster of Peladon" - and if you want to see the Ice Warriors in action in Classic Who then this is the set to get.  I love these two stories - and in all honesty, they're worth watching for Alpha Centauri alone.

Please note - this IS the Region 2 UK/EU DVD so please only enter the competition if you are able to play Region 2 DVDS.

We have one set to give away and no question to answer - competition is open to all - no restrictions on location as long as you can play Region 2 dvds.

To enter please click the "COMPETITION" tab above.

Video - Exclusive Clip - "The Bells of Saint John"

The BBC have uploaded a new clip from "The Bells of Saint John" entitled "The Doctor changes..." and have described it as "alone in the Tardis, the Eleventh Doctor changes...":

Radio Times - Interviews and Episode Guide

The new issue of the Radio Times - available from today - has a rather nice 4 page spread about "Doctor Who".  Both Matt and Jenna are interviewed and, of course, we get the ubiquitous episode guide by the Moff.

Matt talks about "bulking" up and admits he goes to the gym about three times a week.  As ever, he's asked about his future on the show and has this to say:
"Forever!  I came back and put the costume on for the photoshoot today.  At the risk of sounding self-indulgent and cheesy, it really does make you want to go back and start shooting.  I'm attached to the show for the next year and I take it year by year.  I think that's the only way you can take it."
The interesting thing, for me, was Matt's response to claims we're getting short shrift as far as episodes etc in this Anniversary year:
"But I think there's only so much you CAN shoot.  There's a Christmas special and eight episodes, there's the 50th anniversary and on top of that you've got Mark Gatiss writing a script, plus you've got live events, things taking place around the world simultaneously.  There's only so much you can make without compromising the quality.  It will be everything it needs to be, the anniversary.  And in November there will be a right old party."
Quite right - give me quality over quantity any day of the week.  Jenna's interview is rather brief and she confirms again that she's in "next year's Doctor Who" and that "The Rings of Akhaten" is her favourite.

The Moff's episode guide is as teasing as ever.  He states that for "Cold War", Mark Gatiss had "one more idea that made my hair stand on end";  "Hide" is a ghost story - a "haunted house and in this show we're delivering one of the best.";   "The Crimson Horror" is "insane, terrifying and Victorian" and, as for "the finale", Mr Moffat had this to say:
"Oh, I think I'll hold on to the title of this one just a little longer.  There's going to be a revelation.  I'm not teasing.  I'm not wrong-footing you - you're about to learn something about the Doctor that you never knew before.  And I think you're in for a shock..."
The Radio Times is available from all good newsagents priced £1.60.

Series 7B - Episode Titles Confirmation

Both the Radio Times and DWM have confirmed the episode titles for the Series 7B.  Well...sort of.  The title of the finale still remains a secret.  The titles are:

1. The Bells of Saint John
2. The Rings of Akhaten
3. Cold War
4. Hide
5. Journey to the Centre of the Tardis
6. The Crimson Horror
7. Nightmare in Silver (previously "The Last Cyberman")
8. TBA - still a closely guarded secret!

The new issue of the Radio Times - released today - has interviews with Matt and Jenna together with the Moff's Series 7B "episode guide".  We'll bring you details of that later.

Royal Mail Doctor Who Commemorative Stamps - Released Today

The special Doctor Who Commemorative Stamps that go on sale today have apparently already smashed sales records.  Royal Mail confirmed that pre-registration for the sets was more than three times higher than any other commemorative set they have produced.

You can buy presentation packs, stamp books and even framed stamps directly from the Royal Mail here.

New Promo Pics - "The Bells of Saint John"

The BBC have released a few more promo pics for "The Bells of Saint John" - right click and open in new tab/window for larger versions:

Monday, 25 March 2013

Screencaps - BBC America - Matt Interviews Jenna

As promised, screencaps from the "Matt interviews Jenna" video have been uploaded to the Flickr Gallery.  Samples are below - right click and open in new tab/window for larger versions - please feel free to take and use:

Video - Matt Interviews Jenna

Following on from yesterday's video where Jenna interviewed Matt, this time it's reversed and Matt interviews Jenna.  Screencaps later:

Video - Matt, Jenna and the Moff talk about the 50th Anniversary Special

Courtesy of Digital Spy comes a video where Matt, Jenna and the Moff talk about the upcoming 50th Anniversary Special.  Matt describes it as "big, as bold, as badass as we've ever done" and all three are adamant that it will celebrate 50 years of the show whilst also looking forward:

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Screencaps - BBC America Video - Jenna interviews Matt

A batch of caps from the BBC America video where Jenna interviews Matt have been uploaded to the Flickr Gallery.  Samples below - right click and open in new tab/window for large versions - feel free to take and use: