Bookmark and Share Radio Times looks ahead to Christmas

11/30/2013 01:36:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Just two weeks after the twelve cover issue of Radio Times celebrating fifty years of Doctor Who, the Time Lord once more graces the front of the magazine, this time promoting the Christmas Episode, The Time of the Doctor, and the end of Matt Smith's tenure as the Doctor.

It's mere weeks until Matt Smith bids a fond farewell to Doctor Who but we couldn't let him go without one final hurrah – and a Radio Times cover, of course. This week's magazine marks Matt's 13th appearance on the cover as the Doctor, matching the record held by his predecessor, David Tennant. And just in time for the arrival of the 13th Doctor. Neat, eh?

And there are plenty more Doctor Who treats in store this week. For those of you who enjoyed our exclusive message from Matt Smith to celebrate the Doctor's 50th birthday, we've got another from the doors of the Tardis plus a sneak peek behind the scenes on our cover shoot. Download the Blippar app and point your phone at the magazine to unlock all the exclusive content, including a gallery of all 13 of Matt Smith’s Radio Times Doctor Who covers and a complete episode guide to all the 11th Doctor’s adventures

As if that wasn't enough, we've got Matt Smith's final interview reflecting on his last days as the Time Lord and revealing his Hollywood hipster ambitions. One man who predicts a long and successful career for Smith is Steven Moffat who praises his lead Doctor Who actor – along with his Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch – for their wise career choices.
The magazine is on sale from today, Saturday 30 November 2013.

Bookmark and Share Doctor Who debated in the Lords

11/28/2013 07:33:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Tributes have been paid to Doctor Who in the House of Lords, the upper house of the UK Parliament.

The debate was That this House takes note of the contribution of broadcast media to the United Kingdom economy, moved by Baroness Bonham-Carter of Yarnbury, a Liberal Democrat peer who has worked for both the BBC and Channel 4.

In the debate Baroness Grender, in her maiden speech, referred to Doctor Who and its record breaking weekend.
This debate necessarily starts with the record we have in public service broadcasting, of which the cornerstone is the BBC. BBC Worldwide is the largest TV programme distributor outside the major US studios, and its impact on the reputation of the United Kingdom overseas is one which increases our ability to trade worldwide and way beyond broadcasting. My noble friend Lady Bonham-Carter’s timing for this debate is perfect, following the amazing weekend marking the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who. Simulcast in 94 countries, setting a Guinness world record, with record-breaking figures in America, it was event TV drama at its best, delivered around the globe. That thrill of seeing all the Doctors saving Gallifrey is something my eight year-old son will remember until the 100th anniversary.
Lord Birt, former BBC Director General John Birt, also paid tribute to The Doctor.
Our comic, eccentric and very British superhero, Doctor Who, who rightly has been much mentioned today, reached 50 last Saturday with a near-simultaneous broadcast in 94 different countries, as the noble Baroness, Lady Grender, mentioned. Nothing like that has ever happened before.
Baroness Humphreys, who is President of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, paid tribute to the BBC investment in Wales, in particular at the drama centre of excellence on Cardiff Bay.
Programmes such as Doctor Who, Merlin and Sherlock and many others have been produced in Cardiff over a number of years but they are now produced in the BBC’s new drama facility in the recently built drama village at Roath Lock in the Porth Teigr, or Tiger Bay, area of Cardiff Bay. The drama studios there are the length of three football pitches, and more than 600 actors, camera operators and technicians are employed there—all, of course, contributing to the local economy.
Lord Gardiner of Kimble mentioned the weekend global simulcast.
Your Lordships have already mentioned Doctor Who. Its 50th anniversary special has just had a record-breaking global simultaneous broadcast—I am informed by officials that it is called a simulcast—that reached 94 countries across all the continents.
In closing the debate Baroness Bonham-Carter of Yarnbury looked back to the past and directed a question directly at Lord Grade, previous Director of Programmes at the BBC Michael Grade.
Finally, as Doctor Who has dominated the debate and I see my noble friend Lord Grade in his seat, I cannot resist wondering whether, had he known that Sylvester McCoy would regenerate into John Hurt, he would still have cancelled the programme?
Lord Grade nodded vigorously to indicate the affirmative.

The full debate can be viewed via the Parliament TV site and the transcript is available from Hansard.

Bookmark and Share Inferno Fiction 16

11/28/2013 02:58:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Issue sixteen of the fanzine Inferno Fiction is now available online to view.

The Anniversary edition issue includes:
  • Let There Be Rock
  • by Julie Kay With an "All Access Pass" the Doctor pays a visit to see Chuck Berry at one of his first concerts in New York City to show off his skills at playing guitar...and the duck walk...
  • A Word To The Wise
  • by Michael Baxter Dr. Who takes a trip of biblical proportions back into history with his grandchildren, John and told by Leah, wife to Jacob...
  • You Are Not Alone
  • by Fionna MacDonald I was the man who lived through the Time War. I am the Master – but I won’t be much longer. I need to record my thoughts so that I know who I was once I’m someone else. Are you confused yet?
  • The Rallax Operation
  • by Al Dickerson Part One: The scoundrels Garron & Unstoffe (ret.) become Stinking Rich. They bother a notably twitchy Time Lord. They are rudely boarded. They are Atomized. Unstoffe is Besotted. Matters of Draconian Dinner Etiquette and Celestial Mechanics are discussed under Pressing Circumstances. A Spear stops Singing.
  • Later
  • by Jack Lawrence Following the death of Rosanna Calvierri on a recent visit to Venice, the Doctor has some unfinished business to attend to.
  • Fragile
  • by Meg MacDonald 'For all that I exist in a rapidly changing state of flux, unfinished, incomplete, I have the capacity to interpret data far beyond even his ken. I possess Knowledge, genetic Memories of Time—of yesterday and tomorrow. It is my legacy.'
  • Right Of Passage
  • by Nic Ford 'Listen, younglings, and listen well – for I am Leela, warrior of the Sevateem, and I have a tale to tell you. A tale of death and pain and sorrow, of wrath and bitter terror. A tale so harrowing, so hung with horror and blood and fear, that you may quake in your cots as you sleep this sundown, lest the night spirits take you and rend you from the protection of your fathers’ spears and the comfort of your mothers’ dugs. 'For this is a tale of the Evil One!'
  • Through A Glass, Darkly
  • by Julie Kay and Al Dickerson The Doctor and Ace fall witness to the arrival of another Time Lord. Another Doctor...
  • Like The Goblin Bee
  • by Meg MacDonald "Summer is gone. There is no gentleness here. I tell myself that once there was. Not here, precisely, but in our lives. In my life. With him. God, how I love... loved him."
  • The Fear Of All Sums
  • by Samuel Marks Part Two: While The Cavalier trys to work out why he's not where he thought he was, the Doctor and Romana are having a spot of bother with local policing, the Kuricam...

Bookmark and Share Doctor Who Adventures Goes Interactive

11/28/2013 03:14:00 am - Reported by Marcus

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, Doctor Who Adventures has teamed up with Blippar to create a special interactive edition.

Readers can interact with Doctor Who content in a completely new way and this amazing interactive edition comes with a cool Eleventh Doctor dress-up set, which includes a sonic screwdriver, a fez, a bow tie and 3D glasses.

Out now, after downloading the free Blippar App and pointing a smartphone or tablet at the magazine pages, readers can use their device to:
  • Discover an awesome moving cover with a swirling vortex featuring all the Doctors.
  • Put their face on a monster!
  • Watch a top tip from everyone’s favourite Sontaran, Commander Strax!
  • See the fantastic comic come alive.
  • Put on the Doctor dress-up set then have your picture taken with the TARDIS, Clara, Cybermen, Strax or Daleks.
  • There’s a 3D monster fact file, super-scary Weeping Angel poster and amazing 3D Dalek poster which uses Blippar to bring it to life.
  • Plus an exclusive interview with David Tennant and Matt Smith which features a link to watch a video of them talking about what's next for Doctor Who.
  • Finally, there's a behind-the-scenes feature showing the First Doctor's TARDIS being constructed at the Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff.
According to Doctor Who Adventures editor Moray Laing:
We pride ourselves on bringing our readers closer to the action-packed world of their favourite show and this time we've taken the magazine to another dimension. Blippar has allowed us to play around with some of the scariest monsters in the universe to create fantastic interactive content which we know our imaginative readers will love!
Issue 334 of Doctor Who Adventures is on sale until 9 December 2013.

Bookmark and Share Doctor Who Cuttings Archive Returns

11/27/2013 10:03:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

The Doctor Who Cuttings Archive is returning to the internet, courtesy of the Gallifrey Base forum.

The highly-praised website, which consists of newspaper cuttings related to Doctor Who, was launched by Roger Anderson in 1998. Earlier this year, Anderson, who ran the original website from 1998 through to its closure in 2010, agreed to provide his collection of newspaper and magazine articles to Steven Hill, co-owner of Gallifrey Base, in order to make them available again to the public.

Although the transfer of Anderson's materials is still in progress, the new Cuttings Archive is available now with over 200 articles. The new archive curator is John Lavalie, whose focus has been on making the information accessible and useful. Articles are being converted to text so the entire archive can be searched.

Technical support for the new Doctor Who Cuttings Archive is provided by Hill and Dennis Kytasaari, who is a co-owner of, a well-known television episode guides site.

The Doctor Who Cuttings Archive can be found at

Bookmark and Share Jobs on Doctor Who

11/27/2013 05:21:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

BBCThe BBC is looking for runners to work on Doctor Who in Cardiff.

Floor Runner
The floor runner supports the assistant director team on the floor reporting any conflicting priorities to the 3rd Assistant director whilst co-ordinating with the production office for the distribution of packages, scripts, re-writes etc to the cast and crew on the floor. The successful candidate will provide hospitality for crew and artists (tea/coffee making) along with undertaking the transport of crew and artists as required and act as a first point of contact for a range of both internal and external callers and visitors ensuring that these are given a positive image of the BBC and the department.

Applicants must have previous drama experience working on the floor, and need to be used to transporting artists. They need to be able to cover for the 3rd AD as required, and demonstrate they have the stamina required for this demanding role.

Office Runner
The office runner provides full support to the Line Producer and Producer reporting any conflicting priorities to the Production Co-ordinator whilst being able to prioritise and manage all incoming requests for assistance in a polite, helpful and informative manner. They will undertake general office duties including typing, taking messages, photocopying, responding to correspondence, answering telephones, faxing, filing and issuing sides along with making (and collecting) local building deliveries inc. urgent mail/packages etc. They will also act as a first point of contact for a range of both internal and external callers and visitors ensuring that these are given a positive image of the BBC, including escorting them to and from reception, and providing beverages.

Applicants should have previous running experience in television or film production with the ability to use proficiently a range of software packages including Word, Excel, Outlook, Screenwriter and Final Draft with interpersonal and communication skills sufficient to establish and maintain effective working relations with a wide range of internal and external contacts. They will have the ability to express oneself concisely both orally and in writing along with excellent telephone skills, effective time management and organisational skills and the initiative to work both independently and as part of a team. They should also be able to prioritise a conflicting workload efficiently and to maintain standards of accuracy and attention to detail when working to deadlines or changing priorities.

Closing date for both jobs is 1st December with interviews taking place on the 5th. For full details click the links above.

Bookmark and Share The Time of the Doctor confirmed for Germany

11/27/2013 10:38:00 am - Reported by Chuck Foster

FOX appear to be the first channel to announce their broadcast of the Christmas adventure The Time of The Doctor, which is due to be seen in Germany at 9:35pm CET on Christmas Day.

In their press release for December highlights, the channel said:
Christmas Special 2013 - Promotional Image (Credit: BBC/Ray Burmiston)WHO LOVES CHRISTMAS: Das DOCTOR WHO - WEIHNACHTSSPECIAL
14., 21., 24 und 25. Dezember

DOCTOR WHO feiert Weihnachten mit einem besonderen Special. Für Matt Smith ist das zugleich sein letzter Auftritt in der Titelrolle. Vor diesem Weihnachts-Special zeigt euch FOX noch einmal alle Episoden mit Matt. Drei DOCTOR WHO-Staffeln werden innerhalb von drei Tagen gesendet: Staffel fünf beginnt am 14. Dezember ab 12.05 Uhr, Staffel sechs am 21. Dezember ebenfalls ab 12.05 Uhr und Staffel sieben ist geteilt auf den Heiligabend (ab 17.45 Uhr) und den ersten Feiertag (13.55 Uhr) zu sehen. Direkt im Anschluss folgt das Weihnachtsspecial (21.35 Uhr), das wir euch in deutscher Erstausstrahlung präsentieren.

Doctor Who celebrates Christmas with a special, which is also Matt Smith’s last appearance in the title role. Before this special, FOX will repeat all of Matt's episodes. Three Doctor Who seasons will be broadcast on three separate days: Series 5 begins on 14th December from 12:05, Series 6 on the 21st also from 12:05, and then Series 7 is split between Christmas Eve (from 17:45) and Christmas Day (13:55). This is directly followed by the Christmas special at 21:35, which we present to you as the German premiere.

The time should not be used as an indication that the UK premiere will be at 8:35pm, as there is no intention to simulcast the festive adventure as with the Anniversary last weekend. The actual broadcast time will certainly be confirmed within the next couple of weeks, as the Radio Times "legendary Christmas double issue" (21 Dec - 3 Jan) is due to be published in limited numbers on 7th December and countrywide from the 9th.

Bookmark and Share Day of the Doctor takes $4.8 Million at US Box Office

11/27/2013 02:52:00 am - Reported by Marcus

Doctor Who took a stunning $4.8 million at the US box office on Monday, equivalent to 3 million pounds, making The Day of the Doctor the number two movie of the day.

The nationwide 3D screening took place in 660 theatres across the country, selling 320,000 tickets in total. Only The Hunger Games: Catching Fire ranked higher. This screening was in addition to the live simulcast with the BBC on Saturday which was shown on limited screens and took around $204,000.

To put the achievment into perspective, Entertainment Weekly reports the take is roughly as much as The Wizard of Oz in 3D made during its entire run earlier this year, and more than indie favourite Much Ado About Nothing.

Soumya Sriraman, Executive Vice President of Home Entertainment and Licensing, BBC Worldwide North America said
It’s incredible that Doctor Who has made history once again, setting record numbers across the board on BBC America, in social media, and now in theaters. It’s a testament to the fans and their dedication for Doctor Who
As reported earlier, the 50th Anniversary story also took £1.7 million in the UK, £0.87 million in Australia and 0.095 million in New Zealand over the weekend. The total currently stands at over £5.8 million ($9.4 million) with screenings across Europe, Canada and Latin America yet to be included.

Bookmark and Share US Ratings - Day of the Doctor

11/26/2013 02:17:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Doctor Who broke all records on BBC America this weekend with The Day of the Doctor getting 3.6 million viewers watching the anniversary special.

The live simulcast, shown at 2.50pm on the East Coast and 11.50am on the west, got an audience of 2.4 million of which 1.2 million were in the 25-54 age group. The primetime repeat added over a million to the total to give BBC America its highest rating to date.

Perry Simon, General Manager for BBC AMERICA, said
The fan response on-air, in social media and in theaters across the country has been nothing short of incredible. The 50th Anniversary of this extraordinary program has cemented its iconic status for millions of American viewers and we can't wait for the Christmas Special.
Rentrack report that Doctor Who also achieved a $13,607 per screen average in the US, for the 3D screening event, beating The Hunger Games: Catching Fire‘s $12,300 average.

Bookmark and Share The Day of the Doctor box office success for Australia and New Zealand

11/26/2013 11:09:00 am - Reported by Chuck Foster

The Day of the Doctor - in Cinema (Australia/New Zealand) (Credit: BBC Worldwide)Hot on the heels of the UK box office success, Australia's figures show that The Day of the Doctor was a huge hit in cinemas there, too! The 50th Anniversary adventure took $1.54 million (£872K) at the weekend, placing it third in the charts. Webwombat reported:
Showing on just 107 screens, the sci-fi celebration average an astounding $14,399 per screen (pretty much means every session was sold out) for a final take of over $1.5M.
As with the UK, the runaway leader was The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, whose opening weekend took some $12.5m (£7.8m); however, second place was taken by Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa achieving $1.7m (£962K) in its second week.

Meanwhile, in New Zealand, Flicks reports the episode was even more successful, reaching second place in the chart after taking $187,029 (£95K) at the box office. Unsurprisingly, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire was again top of the charts, taking $2.16m (£1.1m) in its opening weekend. Thor: The Dark World took the third spot at $159,271 (£81K).

(with thanks to Dallas Jones)

Bookmark and Share Doctor Who: Legacy launches Wednesday

11/26/2013 10:39:00 am - Reported by Chuck Foster

Tiny Rebel Games and Seed Studio have announced the release of their mobile game, Doctor Who: Legacy, this coming Wednesday, 27th November. The app will be free to play, and available for both Android and iOS operating systems.

Doctor Who: Legacy (Credit: DoctorWhoLegacy/Twitter)Build a team of your favourite companions and allies drawn from the extensive and illustrious history of the show; face the Doctor’s most notorious enemies; and relive the Doctor’s greatest triumphs. Doctor Who: Legacy will launch with episodes and characters from the most recent two seasons of the show. Season 5 will be released as further free to play content in the New Year as we go backwards through fifty beloved years of Doctor Who lore.

Visually striking, with meticulous attention to character detail, Doctor Who: Legacy is a feast for the eyes of any fan, and features a brand new score by acclaimed video game composer Chris Huelsbeck as well as the iconic theme song from the show as recorded by Murray Gold.

Lee Cummings, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Tiny Rebel Games, said:
The 11th (or is it 12th?) Doctor’s regeneration is approaching fast. With decades of epic adventures to draw from, Doctor Who: Legacy is a loving homage created by loyal Whovians, and is rich in the show’s creative legacy and fun. Combining easy to learn, hard to master mechanics with beloved characters and cunning villains, Doctor Who: Legacy will be a treat for fans, casual players and even the most hard-core gamers alike.

The game also has a Twitter account, @DoctorWhoLegacy for updates.

Bookmark and Share The Day of the Doctor makes UK box office top 3

11/26/2013 10:10:00 am - Reported by Anthony Weight

The website Screen Daily is reporting that the 3D cinema showings of The Day of the Doctor, which took place in tandem with its television début on BBC One at the weekend, earned £1.7 million ($2.2 million) in Britain, enough to propel the story to third place at the UK box office for the weekend. The 50th anniversary special was therefore behind only the Hollywood blockbusters The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (£12.2 million) and Gravity (£2.4 million) in this week's chart.

Screen Daily also reports that this is the first week in which releases outside of regular motion pictures, such as one-off specials and live events, have been included in the UK box office chart. The reported figure comes from showings on 450 screens on Saturday.

As previously-reported, The Day of the Doctor was also a success in the television ratings, gaining over 10 million viewers on overnight figures alone - only the sixth episode of Doctor Who to achieve this feat since the series returned in 2005.

Bookmark and Share Christmas reveals The Time of The Doctor

11/26/2013 12:13:00 am - Reported by Chuck Foster

With just under a month to go, the BBC have revealed the title of this year's Christmas Day adventure to be The Time of the Doctor, accompanied by two versions of their festive image representing the Doctor's final outing in the guise of Matt Smith!

Christmas Special 2013 - Promotional Image (Credit: BBC/Ray Burmiston) Christmas Special 2013 - Promotional Image (Credit: BBC/Ray Burmiston)

A teaser trailer for the episode was released at the weekend.

Bookmark and Share Canadian Ratings - Day of the Doctor

11/25/2013 09:55:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor was watched by 1.1 million viewers in Canada during its live broadcast at 2:50 p.m. on Saturday, securing the largest audience ever on broadcaster Space.

It was the most-watched entertainment program on Canadian television on Saturday, and among the key demographics it was second only to hockey. Combined with its encore broadcast at 8 p.m, the two-hour special reached nearly 1.7 million viewers overall. The episode is now online now for Canadian viewers at

The episode tied as the most-watched entertainment specialty broadcast in Canada this broadcast year to date. The commercial-free worldwide simulcast of the record-breaking episode made Space the number 1 network overall during the special.

A rare, live weekend edition Space’s flagship original series Innerspace also shattered records drawing 447,000 viewers with its live pre and post specials. With #INNERSPACE trending on Twitter, before and after the screening drew the highest ever audience for INNERSPACE. Throughout the day, Space was the number 1 specialty network with an average audience of 105,000 A25-54 viewers, and 99,000 A18-49 viewers.

Bookmark and Share Moffat on Doctor Numbering

11/25/2013 06:44:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat has been talking to Radio Times about the future of the Doctor, given the character is now dangerously near the end of his regeneration cycle as spelled out in the 1976 story The Deadly Assassin.

The story stated a Time Lord can only regenerate twelve times, and Moffat considers the Doctor is now in his thirteenth and final body. John Hurt is now officially a Doctor, sitting between the Eighth and Ninth Doctors, and David Tennant used up an extra regeneration during his stay. The writer was clear about the future, and how the Doctor is now at the end of his cycle - something that could cause problems when Matt Smith turns into Peter Capaldi in the 2013 Christmas episode. "The 12 regenerations limit is a central part of Doctor Who mythology - science fiction is all about rules, you can't just casually break them.."

To add to the confusion and despite the number of bodies the Doctor has had, Moffat is clear that Matt Smith is still the Eleventh Doctor. He told a press conference at London's Excel arena that the addition of the John Hurt Doctor to the series does nothing to alter the numbering of the other incarnations.

"He's just The Doctor, Matt Smith's Doctor is the 11th Doctor, however there is no such character as the 11th Doctor – he’s just the Doctor – that's what he calls himself. The numbering doesn't matter, except for those lists that you and I have been making for many years. So I've given you the option of not counting John Hurt numerically - he's the War Doctor."

Moffat also talked of how he found it irresistible to put Tom Baker into the 50th Anniversary story. "Tom didn't want to come and do a long thing and he didn't want to put the old costume on. He didn't want to do any of that, but his agent said that he wasn't against the idea of doing a short appearance."

Baker was the longest-serving Doctor, appearing from 1974-1981. Moffat said it would have been impossible to include all the surviving Doctors in the episode. "You can't have scenes around 11 or 12 people - you can't do it. To have the longest-standing Doctor make an appearance and be the one who briefs the new Doctor on where to go . . . well, it's irresistible, isn't it? You get to hear that voice again! It was just wonderful."

Bookmark and Share Day of the Doctor - Appreciation Index

11/25/2013 03:50:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

The Day of the Doctor scored an Appreciation Index figure of 88 for its broadcast on BBC One on Saturday.

The Appreciation Index, or AI, is a measure of how much the audience enjoyed the programme. The score puts the programme firmly in the "excellent" category, and is particularly impressive given the large audience. The score was the joint-highest for Saturday on the five main channels.

Sunday's BBC Three repeat of The Day of the Doctor had an overnight audience of 0.64 million viewers, where the programme won its timeslot. The broadcast peaked at 0.76 million.

The Saturday showing of Doctor Who Live: The Afterparty had an audience of 1.34 million watching, but a rather poor AI of 69. The Sunday repeat had 0.22 million watching.

Sunday saw I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! take top slot in the overnights with 10.6 million watching, pushing Doctor Who into fourth place for the week. Final figures will be released next week, and are likely to see Doctor Who very near the top of the chart for the week.

Bookmark and Share Day of the Doctor - A Hit Down Under

11/25/2013 12:43:00 am - Reported by Marcus

Australian Doctor Who fans set their alarms and tuned in to ABC1 as Doctor Who: The Day Of The Doctor was simulcast to 94 countries around the globe over the weekend.

Doctor Who pulled in a massive 1.95 million viewers nationally, 1.36 million at 7.30pm on ABC1 and a further 0.59 million for the live broadcast on ABC1, which went out at 6.50am in Sydney and 3.50am in Perth.

The live screening achieved a 5 city metro overnight average audience of 424,000 viewers and a total TV share of 37.1%, while the repeat broadcast achieved a 5 city metro average audience of 922,000 viewers and a total TV share of 16.1%. The repeat was second in its timeslot to 60 Minutes on Channel 9. Across both the live and repeat broadcasts, the programme reached 1.5 million viewers, or 9.3% of the 5 city metro population.

In addition, there were 51,000 plays via iview.

An Adventure in Space and Time, which followed the episode, had 0.94 million watching, a 5 city metro average audience of 633,000 and a total TV share of 13.5%.

Brendan Dahill, Controller ABC1, paid tribute to the series and its makers.
It's clear that The Doctor is adored by millions of people around the globe and we're thrilled that ABC TV was able to be part of this phenomenal global broadcast, bringing the Time Lord's 50th anniversary adventure to fans in Australia.

Bookmark and Share Anniversary episode awarded Guinness World Record

11/24/2013 05:38:00 pm - Reported by John Bowman

Last night's simultaneous broadcast of The Day of the Doctor to 94 countries has been officially named the world's largest-ever simulcast of a TV drama.

A Guinness World Records certificate was presented to showrunner and episode writer Steven Moffat today at the Doctor Who Celebration at the ExCeL Centre in London by Craig Glenday, the editor-in-chief of Guinness World Records, who said:
Who else but the time-twisting Doctor could appear in 94 countries at once?! This outstanding achievement is testament to the fact that the longest-running sci-fi TV show in history is not just a well-loved UK institution but a truly global success adored by millions of people.
Accepting the award, Moffat commented:
For years the Doctor has been stopping everyone else from conquering the world. Now, just to show off, he's gone and done it himself!
Tim Davie, BBC Worldwide's chief executive officer, said:
We knew we were attempting something unprecedented in broadcast history, not only because Doctor Who is a drama, unlike a live feed event such as a World Cup football match or a royal wedding, but because we had to deliver the episode in advance to the four corners of the world so that it could be dubbed and subtitled into 15 different languages.

If there was any doubt that Doctor Who is one of the world's biggest TV shows, this award should put that argument to rest - and how fitting for it to receive such an accolade in its 50th year.
The BBC said that more than 1,500 cinemas around the world showed the episode, with fans in Sweden and Norway, where there was no client broadcaster, petitioning their cinemas successfully to show the episode, while in Argentina they persuaded a major cinema chain to "simulscreen" the episode. Over in the USA, there was a sell-out of 10,000 cinema tickets in 28 minutes with no advertising or marketing, while Germany saw one of its biggest cinema chains - Cinemaxx - reporting that the episode was the fastest non-movie pre-sale in its history.

Guinness World Records has also compiled a list of the programme's other achievements.

Bookmark and Share John Hurt Doctor added to line-up picture

11/24/2013 04:07:00 pm - Reported by John Bowman

A BBC image of the 11 Doctors that was released last month has been updated, adding the John Hurt version of the Doctor between the Paul McGann and Christopher Eccleston incarnations.

Other tweaks have included replacing the profile picture of McGann's Doctor. The original image can be seen below.

UPDATE - MONDAY 25th NOVEMBER: A new version of the original image comprising 11 Doctors has also been created to include the replacement profile of Paul McGann's Doctor.

Bookmark and Share Deleted scene from The Day of the Doctor

11/24/2013 11:43:00 am - Reported by John Bowman

A deleted scene from The Day of the Doctor has been made available to view online by the BBC.

The short sequence shows the three Doctors - as portrayed by Matt Smith, David Tennant, and John Hurt - bickering and with their feet shackled, while being led under guard into the Tower of London.

Bookmark and Share First teaser trailer for 2013 Christmas special

11/24/2013 11:17:00 am - Reported by John Bowman

The first teaser trailer for this year's Doctor Who Christmas special can now be viewed online.

The trailer aired on BBC One yesterday immediately following The Day of the Doctor and includes Daleks, a Cyberman, a Silent, Weeping Angels, and a tolling bell, with captions stating: "This Christmas Silence Will Fall".

The episode, whose title is yet to be revealed, is expected to be broadcast on Christmas Day, and will see the Eleventh Doctor regenerate into the Twelfth.

Bookmark and Share The Day of the Doctor - overnight viewing figures

11/24/2013 09:34:00 am - Reported by Marcus

The Day of the Doctor was watched by 10.2 million viewers in the UK according to unofficial overnight figures.

The 50th Anniversary story achieved an audience share of 37.4% of the total television audience, beating ITV's The X Factor, which had 7.7 million watching.

Doctor Who was the second most-watched show of the day, with Strictly Come Dancing just edging into first place with 10.6 million viewers. ITV's other big hitter, I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, came in at number 4 with 9.2 million watching. 5th for the day was a special Doctor Who-themed edition of Pointless Celebrities which had 5.0 million viewers.

Doctor Who is currently the third most-watched programme for the week.

The figures include those who watched the show live on BBC One, or who recorded it and watched it before 2am. They do not include those watching on iPlayer or at any of the multiple cinema showings.

Final official figures will be released next week.

Bookmark and Share The Day of the Doctor - press reviews

11/24/2013 08:36:00 am - Reported by Marcus

The papers have been reviewing The Day of the Doctor, with most of them being impressed by the 50th anniversary episode.

The Mirror loved the show, saying how Steven Moffat "has put something together that not only gives hardcore fans a beautiful reinvention of their favourite show, but also gives casual viewers a stonking story." The paper praises the acting as "superb," with Matt Smith holding his own against veteran John Hurt. The Telegraph compares the acting styles of David Tennant and Matt Smith, calling the former "edgy and mercurial," and the latter "gentler, with a boyish eccentricity." They praised John Hurt as a "fantastic counterpoint to the physicality of Tennant and Smith," adding "with one withering look, he was able to silence his younger selves"

The Guardian found the episode "confusing" but praised the "beautiful acting." The Mail called the episode "typically chaotic, full of big, hollow bluster and knowing tiny detail." The paper disliked the effects, accusing the BBC of pandering to the American audience, while disliking the Zygons as not scary enough.

Online Mashable talked of "a towering achievement of an episode, one designed to please fans and newcomers alike which shows why the Doctor is finding his way into ever more homes and hearts." TVfanatic praised Steven Moffat for doing justice to a long-running favorite by "paying homage to the past and opening up a new future of what will hopefully be a show generations in the future will continue to love."

According to social analytics company, SecondSync Doctor Who generated almost half a million tweets during its simultaneous broadcast to over 90 countries. Most tweeting about the episode were female, with the peak number of tweets occurring at the beginning of the episode at 12,939 tweets per minute.

Bookmark and Share Tom Baker - Happiest Time of My Life

11/24/2013 07:36:00 am - Reported by Marcus

Tom Baker has told the BBC that playing the Doctor was the happiest time of his whole life.

The veteran actor was interviewed for the BBC Three show Doctor Who Live: The Afterparty , screened directly after the 50th Anniversary episode in which Baker made a surprise cameo appearance playing The Curator. It's been my entire existence. I'm delighted to be celebrating it, he said. The fans give me the credit for making Saturday more fun than it really was, in between the football, Basil Brush and Bruce Forsyth. I was right up there with all those legends and I'm grateful..

The live show featured interviews many previous Doctors and Companions from the series including Carole Ann Ford and William Russell, both of whom appeared in the first episode, An Unearthly Child, fifty years ago.
Earlier in the day five Doctors, Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy and Matt Smith received a standing ovation at the Doctor Who Convention at London's ExCeL Centre. When asked about their favourite Doctor most cited Patrick Troughton. He always managed to sort things out without you knowing he'd done it, said Colin Baker, without Patrick none of us would be here.

Bookmark and Share The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot

11/24/2013 01:58:00 am - Reported by Marcus

The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot - a star-studded special written and directed by Peter Davison and starring Davison alongside Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy, with Paul McGann appearing too - is now available on the BBC iPlayer.

It is also scheduled to be broadcast again tonight via the Red Button service, between 9.25pm and 10.35pm.

Bookmark and Share Media Catchup: Saturday

11/24/2013 12:08:00 am - Reported by Chuck Foster

A summary of the media coverage relating to the 50th Anniversary for a Celebratory Saturday!

(note: the BBC radio broadcasts are available worldwide, but video broadcasts may be unavailable outside the United Kingdom. BBC iPlayer programmes are generally available for seven days after broadcast)


  • Well there's only one thing that you really needed to remember to watch, and that was of course The Day of the Doctor. Broadcast simultaneously around many parts of the world on television (with other channels very close to tranmission, too) and in cinema, Doctor Who truly becomes global! If for some reason you managed to miss it in the United Kingdom then it is available on the BBC iPlayer (though maybe not immediately to enable the rest of the world to catch up)
  • The lead-up to the anniversary programme kicked off with BBC Breakfast fielding reports live from the Doctor Who Celebration at the Excel Centre in London by entertainment correspondent Lizo Mzimba and in-studio discussion with TV critic Toby Earle. The programme also included the new edition of Newswatch, which featured a report on viewers' reaction to the coverage of the series over the last couple of weeks. (BBC iPlayer link for Newswatch)
  • CBBC had a Doctor Who theme throughout the day, including the Blue Peter Doctor Who Party (BBC iPlayer) and a 12 Again special featuring cast and celebrity fan memories of Doctor Who (BBC iPlayer).
  • Doctor Who Live: The Afterparty was broadcast on BBC Three straight after The Day of the Doctor was broadcast, with Zoe Ball and Rick Edwards presenting the response to the episode from host of celebrities and fans. (BBC iPlayer)
  • There were two new items on the BBC's Red Button service during the evening; the first was a behind-the-scenes video of The Day of The Doctor (available on YouTube), and a Doctor Who skit by Peter Davison on how three former Doctors try desperately to be in the 50th Anniversary special.


  • Graham Norton broadcast his BBC Radio 2 morning show live from the Doctor Who Celebration, including chats with some of the guest stars of the day, including Tom Baker. (BBC iPlayer)
  • A very early start for Richard Latto on BBC Radio Solent as he engaged upon a look at the association between the South coast and Doctor Who. (BBC iPlayer)
  • BBC Essex featured William Grantham, winner of Blue Peter's "Design a Monster" competition, who talked to Peter Holmes about his experience. (BBC iPlayer - from 2:41:05, plus other chat at 1:23:00)
  • BBC Radio Norfolk broadcast their final two soundbites from the county's Doctor Who community, featuring Terry Molloy (BBC iPlayer) and Brian Hodgson (BBC iPlayer).
  • Other coverage includes BBC Radio Cambridgeshire's Jane Smith (BBC iPlayer), BBC Radio York's Julia Booth (BBC iPlayer), BBC Radio Devon's John Govier (BBC iPlayer), and BBC Radio 1's Matt Edmonson (BBC iPlayer)

Misc Media Items

Highlights for Sunday

  • BBC Radio Norfolk presents a collection of Doctor Who anecdotes from the county from midday.
  • BBC Radio 6 has an item on the BBC Radiophonic Workshop from 8:00pm on Stuart Maconie's Freak Zone.
  • UKTV in Australia and New Zealand premiere The Doctors Revisited: The Ninth Doctor, The Tenth Doctor and The Eleventh Doctor and An Adventure in Space and Time amongst others.

Bookmark and Share Behind the Lens - The Day of the Doctor

11/23/2013 10:23:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

The BBC has released a video looking behind the lens on the 50th Anniversary episode.

Voiced by the Sixth Doctor, Colin Baker, the video features Matt Smith, David Tennant and Jenna Coleman with Billie Piper and John Hurt, as well as lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat, discussing their 50th Anniversary experiences.

Bookmark and Share An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend

11/23/2013 05:16:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

The Beginning
The final episode in our series of features telling the story of the creation of Doctor Who, and the people who made it happen.

On Saturday 23rd November 1963, at 5.16pm, exactly 50 years ago, Doctor Who was first broadcast on BBC Television.

The story so far... Since the spring of 1962, a new science-fiction series has been slowly, but sometimes surely, growing into life at the BBC. From the vague suggestion that the Corporation should look at making such a series, through brainstorming sessions, a new head of drama, script problems, re-made episodes, the threat of cancellation and constant arguments over budget and resources, the absolute determination of a small but determined production team has seen the new programme, called Doctor Who, at last ready to face the sternest test of all - the opinion of the British viewing public, on a day when world events have left most of them likely to be too shocked to take it in at all...

Despite events in Dallas, the schedules on BBC Television for Saturday were relatively unaffected by the news. It was the days before rolling news and continuous live updates. Grandstand, the long-running sports programme, was on air as usual, with live coverage of rugby union, where Cardiff were playing New Zealand, forming the bulk of the afternoon. A 1'47" news flash had been broadcast at 4pm, with Corbet Woodall bringing viewers up to date with events from America. Grandstand came off air just after 5.15pm and was followed by a 50-second presentation junction looking ahead to the evening's entertainment, which included Juke Box Jury, with Cilla Black, Sid James, Don Moss and Anna Quayle, the police series Dixon of Dock Green, the American series Wells Fargo and the Saturday film Santa Fe Passage.

It was at exactly 16 minutes and 20 seconds past five that the opening titles of Doctor Who ran and the nation was introduced to a brand-new science fiction series.

The ratings were sound, but not spectacular, with 4.4 million viewers tuning in. A power cut had hit a sizeable area of the country, meaning many people had been unable to watch, and for this reason executives agreed to repeat the first episode a week later, just before transmission of the second.

Press response, however, was favourable, as was the BBC's own audience research into the story. A Reaction Index of 63 was recorded, roughly the average for drama at the time. Detailed research, released in December, showed viewers in a research sample thought this a good start to a series that gave promise of being very entertaining.

'Tonight's new serial seemed to be a cross between Wells' Time Machine and a space-age Old Curiosity Shop, with a touch of Mack Sennett comedy. It was in the grand style of the old pre-talkie films to see a dear old Police Box being hurtled through space and landing on Mars or somewhere. I almost expected to see a batch of Keystone Cops emerge on to the Martian landscape. Anyway, it was all good, clean fun and I look forward to meeting the nice Doctor's planetary friends next Saturday, whether it be in the ninth or ninety-ninth century A.D.' wrote a retired Naval Officer speaking, it would seem, for a good many viewers in the sample who regarded this as an enjoyable piece of escapism, not to be taken too seriously, of course, but none the less entertaining and, at times, quite thrilling - 'taken as fantasy it was most enjoyable. I presume it is meant for the kiddies but nevertheless I found it entertaining at Saturday teatime and look forward to seeing the Cave of Skulls in the next episode'. Some viewers disliked the play, either because they had a blind spot for science fiction of any kind or because they considered this a rather poor example, being altogether too far-fetched and ludicrous, particularly at the end - 'a police box with flashing beacon travelling through interstellar space - what claptrap!' Too childish for adults, it was at the same time occasionally felt to be unsuitable for children of a more timid disposition and, for one reason or another, proved something of a disappointment to a sizeable number of those reporting. Generally speaking, however, viewers in the sample thought this a good start to a series which gave promise of being very entertaining - the children, they were sure, would love it (indeed, there is every evidence that children viewing with adults in the sample found it very much to their taste) but it was, at the same time, written imaginatively enough to appeal to adult minds and would, no doubt, prove to be quite intriguing as it progressed.

The acting throughout was considered satisfactory, several viewers adding that it was pleasant to see William Hartnell again in the somewhat unusual role (for him) of Dr. Who, while the radiophonic effects were apparently highly successful in creating the appropriate 'out of this world' atmosphere, the journey through space being particularly well done.
BBC Head of TV Drama Sydney Newman was out of the country for the launch, staying in New York. On Wednesday Donald Wilson sent him the following telegram:


Date: 27 NOVEMBER 1963


When the series went on the air it had a very uncertain future. Just 26 episodes were confirmed, with an option for an additional 13 if it did well.

With hindsight, that future was secure and the series would flourish. The arrival of the Daleks at the end of the fifth episode would capture the imagination of the nation and push the series to the forefront of British consciousness. Ratings for the first year would peak at over 10 million viewers and the series would become an important weapon in the BBC's battle to win dominance of Saturday night against rival ITV.

The show would survive many changes: the loss of the first production team, the changing of the companions, and in 1966 the replacement of the lead actor. It would survive the transformation into colour and being shunted around the schedules. Ratings would veer from a disappointing 3.1 million to an astonishing 16 million. Most importantly, the series would beat cancellation in 1989, being reborn in 2005 for a new generation, having been brought back to life by those who had adored it in their youth, allowing fans across the world to experience the wonder of the show, just as their parents and grandparents had done before.

Today, Doctor Who celebrates its 50th anniversary with a global broadcast of the 799th episode The Day of the Doctor. The series is at the heart of the BBC's strategy for the future. It brings in millions of pounds for the Corporation through overseas sales and merchandise deals. It is at the centre of the BBC's Saturday night schedule and breaks all records for digital engagement. Eleven lead actors have now graced our screens as the Doctor, with the 12th lined up to take over next month. The series that started life as a vague idea from a working group in 1962 is now an international phenomenon. If all the episodes were shown back to back, the screening would last for 15 days, 10 hours and 9 minutes. It holds the Guinness World Records for "the world's most successful sci-fi series" and "the world's longest-running sci-fi series".

But more than all the awards and accolades, Doctor Who holds a very special place in the hearts of the people who love it. Something about Doctor Who touches the very soul, inspiring generations of fans in their love for the series. The first 50 years are complete. The story goes on.

SOURCES: The Handbook: The First Doctor – The William Hartnell Years: 1963-1966, David J Howe, Mark Stammers, Stephen James Walker (Doctor Who Books, 1994); Radio Times Vol 161 No 2089; BBC Written Archives. The Genesis of Doctor Who
Compiled by:
The Doctor Who News Team

Bookmark and Share Doctor Who: Behind The Lens

11/23/2013 05:15:00 pm - Reported by Chuck Foster

The BBC's Red Button service will be presenting Doctor Who: Behind The Lens from tonight, available after broadcast of The Day of The Doctor.

Doctor Who: Behind The Lens (Credit: BBC)Doctor Who: Behind The Lens

Voiced by the Sixth Doctor, Colin Baker, catch up with old friends and meet some new ones. It’s a rollercoaster ride and a time to celebrate. Features Matt Smith, David Tennant and Jenna Coleman with Billie Piper and John Hurt, as well as lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat, discussing their 50th Anniversary experiences.

Broadcast on the Red Button from:
  • Sat 23 Nov, 9:05pm-10:05pm
  • Sun 24 Nov, 3pm-3:55pm
  • Sun 24 Nov, 8:30pm-9:25pm
  • Wed 27 Nov, 6pm-10pm
  • Thu 28 Nov, 6pm-7:55pm
  • Fri 29 Nov, 6pm-7pm

Also, as reported yesterday, the Red Button service will also see a special spoof produced by Peter Davison:

The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot

A star studded special written and directed by Peter Davison. With the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who about to film, the 'Classic' Doctors are keen to be involved. But do they manage it?

Broadcast on the Red Button from:
  • Sat 23 Nov, 10:05pm-12:40am
  • Sun 24 Nov, 9:25pm-10:35pm

Bookmark and Share Anniversary Message from Steven Moffat

11/23/2013 03:58:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

Showrunner Steven Moffat has recorded a special birthday message to Doctor Who.

The Day of the Doctor is screened worldwide in four hours time.

Bookmark and Share Friday Overnight Viewing Figures

11/23/2013 02:23:00 pm - Reported by Marcus

The Culture Show documentary on Doctor Who, Me, You and Doctor Who, achieved an overnight audience of 0.9 million viewers, a 4% share of the total audience.

The show was opposite top-rated programme of the day I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, with 9.8 million watching.

Thursday's showing of An Adventure in Space and Time achieved an Appreciation Index score of 88. The score is regarded as excellent.

Bookmark and Share Media Catchup: Friday

11/23/2013 01:09:00 am - Reported by Chuck Foster

A summary of the media coverage relating to the 50th Anniversary for a very busy Friday.

(note: the BBC radio broadcasts are available worldwide, but video broadcasts may be unavailable outside the United Kingdom. BBC iPlayer programmes are generally available for seven days after broadcast)


  • BBC Breakfast's coverage of the 50th Anniversary continued this morning with an article by BBC Arts Editor Will Gompertz about 50 years of the show, plus the Doctor himself, Matt Smith, talked live from London as he prepares for the first day of the Excel Doctor Who Celebration. The item is available to watch via the BBC website.
  • Richard Arnold briefly reported on the weekend of celebration to come on ITV's Daybreak (ITV Player). This was then followed by a preview of The Day of The Doctor by showbiz journalist Dan Wootton. (ITV Player)
  • Sunday Mirror critic Kevin O'Sullivan delivered his weekly Talking Telly on Channel 5's The Wright Stuff, feeling that there may have been a little too much coverage of the show over the last fortnight! (Demand 5)
  • BBC regional news programme Look East delved into Doctor Who's association with the region, including interviews with Terry Molloy and Brian Hodgson. The programme is available to watch on the BBC iPlayer from 23:05
  • BBC London News reported on Doctor Who activity in the capitol, including a visit to The Who Shop and participants for the Doctor Who mass wedding taking place this weekend. (BBC iPlayer)
  • BBC South East Today celebrated 50 Years of the show from Herne Bay, home to its first credited writer Anthony Coburn - and also arranged a local screening of An Unearthly Child. (BBC iPlayer - from 12:34)
  • BBC2 premiered Me, You and Doctor Who: a Culture Show Special, with Matthew Sweet taking us through the history of Doctor Who and how it has influenced the social life of Britain. (BBC iPlayer)
  • Matt Smith and David Tennant were guests on The Graham Norton Show on BBC1 (BBC iPlayer)


  • Matt Smith popped in to chat to Nick Grimshaw on BBC Radio 1. (BBC iPlayer - from 1:38:17)
  • Lots of items from BBC Radio Norfolk! Brian Hodgson explains how he created the Dalek voices (BBC iPlayer link); scenic designer Spencer Chapman (link); writer David Fisher (link); Graham Cole on playing a Cyberman (link); Ken Caswell's father painted the TARDIS prop in 1963 (link); Mike Thomas remembers being at Doctor Who rehearsals as a child (link); and John and Gay Hodgson recall Tom Baker encounters (link).
  • BBC Radio Scotland's The Culture Studio with Janice Forsyth features four super-fans - authors A L Kennedy and Jenny Colgan, TV critic Paul Whitelaw and comedian Charlie Ross. Also features Sylvester McCoy and David Tennant! (BBC iPlayer, throughout show)
  • Ray Clark on BBC Essex met an Essex TARDIS owner and hears from former Doctor Who screen writer Donald Tosh. (BBC iPlayer - day overview at 51:52, TARDIS from 2:17:45, Donald from 2:52:01)
  • Dave Monk on BBC Essex chatted to DWM editor Tom Spilsbury and county-born Deborah Watling. (BBC iPlayer - Tom from 52:04, Deborah from 2:35:56, and also more from Donald Tosh at 1:34:32)
  • Mark Punter is next up on BBC Essex, exploring the world of memorabilia, and also chatting to author Jacqueline Rayner. (BBC iPlayer - memorabilia from 23:00, Jacqueline from 1:05:20)
  • The final BBC Essex instalment comes with Drivetime, which features writer Victor Pemberton. (BBC iPlayer - from 49:10, plus Donald Tosh at 1:23:24 and Deborah Watling at 2:36:24)
  • BBC Leicester's Jim Davis chatted to K9-vocalist John Leeson. (BBC iPlayer)
  • The BBC World Service's Witness spoke to Carole Ann Ford (BBC iPlayer, also available as a podcast)
  • Newshour on the World Service reflected on 50 years of the series. (BBC iPlayer - from 43:00 and 47:58)
  • Sara James from the Oxford University Doctor Who Society featured on BBC Radio Oxford's Phil Gayle show dicussing the group and plans for tomorrow. (BBC iPlayer - from 03:41:30)
  • BBC Leicester's Jonathan Lampon included special Doctor Who stories during the show. (BBC iPlayer - from 2:07:45)
  • The theme for BBC Scotland's Get It On With Bryan Burnett for Friday is "songs about the Doctor's assistants, from You've Got a Friend in Me to It Takes Two." (BBC iPlayer)

Misc Media Items

Highlights for Saturday

  • BBC Breakfast report from the 50th Anniversary Doctor Who Celebration at the Excel Centre.
  • Graham Norton also presents his show on BBC Radio 2 live from the convention from 10:00am.
  • Blue Peter celebrates the anniversary with a special party on CBBC from 9:30am.
  • CBBC's 12 Again presents a Doctor Who special from 2:30pm, with cast and celebrities sharing their memories of growing up with the show.
  • BBC3 will present Doctor Who Live: The Afterparty from 9:05pm.
  • Peter Davison presents the mission of classic Doctors to be involved in the 50th Anniversary Special, from 10:05pm via the BBC Red Button.
  • BBC Radio 4 Extra presents a three hour special, Who Made Who? from 9:00am, with audio from the archive, new interviews and extracts from audio versions of Doctor Who.
  • For early birds, BBC Radio Solent's Richard Latto looks at Doctor Who's relationship with Southern England.
  • BBC Radio Norfolk's David Whiteley presents the final two snippets of the county's relationship with the show, with interviews with Terry Molloy and Brian Hodgson.

  • Oh, and a small matter of a 50th Anniversary celebratory episode, The Day of The Doctor, 7:50pm, BBC1 and simulcast around the world!
For further details on these and a number of other local radio broadcasts on Anniversary Day, don't forget to visit This Week In Doctor Who!

Bookmark and Share Radio Times Vote Dalek! cover wins PPA Award

11/22/2013 05:39:00 pm - Reported by Chuck Foster

The Radio Times cover from April 2005 featuring a Dalek crossing Westminster Bridge has won the Professional Publishers Association's Cover of the Century Award. The win for "Vote Dalek!" was announced at the Association's centenary celebration event which took place in London yesterday evening. The cover was one of ten that were shortlisted as those British magazine covers that were the most memorable in the last hundred years.

Radio Times (30 Apr-6 May 2005) (Credit: Radio Times)

Inspired by iconic image of the Daleks crossing Westminster Bridge from Doctor Who’s 1964 story, The Dalek Invasion of Earth (and seen re-enacted in last night's An Adventure in Space and Time), it was created by Radio Times Art Editor Paul Smith. He said:
It’s a great honour to win such a prestigious award. Radio Times always tries to go that extra mile, and this particular cover was certainly no exception. It’s a good example of the imagination and craft that makes Radio Times stand out from the crowd. We managed to reveal the new look Daleks, and combine two very different major television events of that week, into a striking and dramatic re-imagination of an already familiar moment, and that’s a rare opportunity.
Radio Times editor Ben Preston added:
This cover definitely hit the bullseye with millions of readers and visitors. It’s striking, topical and witty and is in a rich tradition of memorable Radio Times covers.

Vote Dalek! received 38.5% of overall vote by over 36,000 participants; Barry McIlheney, CEO, PPA, said:
We’re delighted that the great British public came out and voted in their thousands to choose their Cover of the Century. And it’s apt that such an iconic brand – and one nearly as old as the PPA itself – has been crowned the winner. It’s been great to immerse ourselves in the 100 year history of the magazine industry, but we now look forward to our next century of progress, helping publishers, agencies and advertisers adapt to the seismic changes ahead.

The cover previously won the PPA's Best Magazine Cover Of All Time poll back in 2008.

You can read more about the making of the cover on the Radio Times website.

Bookmark and Share Anniversary edition of DWM goes to reprint

11/22/2013 04:20:00 pm - Reported by John Bowman

The 50th-anniversary edition of Doctor Who Magazine has proved so popular it is being reprinted just a week after publication.

Issue 467 is the biggest edition of the magazine ever at 116 pages and includes 12 art cards, a spoof mini magazine that imagines how DWM would have celebrated the show's first birthday, and nine free audio downloads. Despite a larger-than-normal print run, it has been selling out around the UK.

Editor Tom Spilsbury said:
It's astonishing! I've never seen anything like it. Truth be told, I was a little nervous about the 50th-anniversary issue. We worked hard to put together a really good package for readers, but you never quite know how anything is going to go down. You just cross your fingers and hope people like it.

We've been overwhelmed with messages from readers who have enjoyed the new magazine - but what has been even more exciting is seeing after just a few days on sale the issue was selling out across the country!

We've been taken completely by surprise, as we'd already printed a lot more copies than usual, so Panini has taken the unprecedented step of reprinting the issue in order to get more stock out to the shops. I was looking back at past sales figures, and it's sold even more copies than the "Bad Wolf" edition of 2008 (issue 397), which was the previous highest seller of recent years.

To go back to find an issue that has sold even more copies, well, it's the early-1980s at least - and then our records run out. So I can truthfully say it's the highest-selling issue of DWM since records began! And that's not even including digital sales. An amazing thing for the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who.

Thank you so much to all our readers for your support over the years. To keep the magazine going for the 16 years when the TV show itself had gone off air is down to your passion and loyalty. And if you haven't got your anniversary issue yet - well, snap it up fast before it dematerialises for good!
Spilsbury told Doctor Who News that around 50,000 copies were initially printed, with another 15,000 now coming off the presses.

Also inside issue 467:

Bookmark and Share Doctor Who: The Celebration opens

11/22/2013 01:27:00 pm - Reported by Chuck Foster

The 50th Anniversary Doctor Who convention, the Celebration is now under way, with the show taking over London's Excel Centre for some three days of panels, signings, and a host of other activities. The BBC have released a taster of the event this morning.

The Graham Norton show on BBC Radio 2 will be broadcast live from the Celebration tomorrow from 10:00am.

Bookmark and Share An Adventure in Space and Time - Overnight Viewing figures

11/22/2013 10:50:00 am - Reported by Marcus

An Adventure in Space and Time had an audience of 2.2 million viewers, according to unofficial overnight viewing figures.

The drama which had a 9.7% share of the audience, was placed against I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! on ITV, which dominated the day with 9.7 million watching, a massive 41.1% share. BBC One showed Britain's Secret Terror Force at 9pm, which got slightly fewer viewers than An Adventure in Space and Time.

Overall the docu-drama was the 22nd most viewed programme of the day on British Television and the second highest on BBC Two for the day.

On BBC Four the repeat of the original Doctor Who story, An Unearthly Child, had 0.67 million watching, roughly equivalent to those watching the BBC Three repeats earlier in the week. The episode had a 4.3% share of the audience and was the second highest rated digital programme in its timeslot, with I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here Now getting top spot.

Episode Two of the story, The Cave of Skulls, had 0.59 million watching and a 4.8% share of the audience. The Forest of Fear got 0.41 million,a 4.5% share and the final episode, The Firemaker, shown at 11.45pm, had 0.36 million as 5.4% share.

Final figures will be released next week and will include those recording the show and watching within one week of transmission.

Bookmark and Share An Unearthly Series - The Origins of a TV Legend

11/22/2013 07:00:00 am - Reported by Anthony Weight

News Has Just Come In...
The penultimate episode in our series telling the story of the creation of Doctor Who, fifty years to the day after the events took place.

On the last day before Doctor Who was first shown, there was good news and bad news for the production team, who were now hard at work on the second serial, which would begin its run in December. The good news was that, without an episode yet having been screened, they were to be given a run of longer than the 13 episodes previously guaranteed. The bad news was that, as with the very first episode, the opening instalment of Terry Nation's Dalek serial would have to be made again, this time for technical reasons. All of this, however, was about to be overshadowed by a tragic event in world history, one with which the beginning of Doctor Who would forever come to be associated.

The news from Dallas did not come until the evening, so on the morning of Friday 22 November 1963 - exactly fifty years ago today - the Doctor Who production team had other matters on their minds. Earlier in the week, the Head of Serials Donald Wilson had viewed a recording of The Dead Planet, the episode which had been recorded the previous Friday, the 15th. Soon after it had been recorded, it had been noticed that the studio microphones had accidentally picked up the radio "talkback" between the production gallery and the headphones of the technical crew on the studio floor. Having viewed the episode, Wilson decided that there was no way it could be transmitted in its current state, and the only option would be to remount it from scratch, which would have to happen the following month. Fortunately, the production team were able to use the footage from the very end of the episode of Barbara being threatened by the unseen Dalek, which was needed for the recap at the start of the second episode, The Survivors, due to be recorded at Lime Grove that evening.

There were some concerns about the long-term effects of this event. David Whitaker, Doctor Who's story editor, was worried that the cast would need to have an extra week added to their contracts to ensure all episodes were completed before they moved on to other projects, but no such extra week had yet been arranged by the BBC contracts department. He wrote to Wilson to express his concerns about this, feeling unable to speak to producer Verity Lambert about it as Barbara actress Jacqueline Hill - a personal friend of Lambert's - had told him in confidence that she had been offered a role in a film on completion of her Doctor Who contract. Whitaker wrote:

It may be sympathetic of a gradual lessening of confidence that the four contracted actors and actresses have in the serial itself. I think they are afraid that it is going to be taken off, and what worries me is that it will eventually affect their performances. Already I sense a certain laissez-fair attitude, and I would dearly love to stop this at birth. The only solution I can see is, of course, to tell them that the serial will continue after thirteen weeks, or not, as the case may be. Perhaps it is the indecision which is really making them feel insecure.

Spurred by this, Wilson wrote to Donald Baverstock, the Controller of Programmes for BBC1 and the man ultimately responsible for deciding how many episodes of Doctor Who would be made. Baverstock had already had cold feet about the show's future on one occasion, almost stopping it entirely after the production of four episodes, but Wilson urged him to commit to another 13, to take the total to at least 26.

While Wilson was waiting for his answer, at 5pm on Thursday evening he, along with Lambert, Whitaker, Hill and her three co-stars William Hartnell, William Russell and Carole Ann Ford, attended a press conference to help with the publicity for the launch of Doctor Who. This took place at the Langham, a former hotel opposite the BBC's radio headquarters, Broadcasting House, which was now owned by the BBC.

On Friday, fifty years ago today, Wilson received the answer he wanted. Baverstock agreed to a commission of a further 13 episodes in addition to those already asked for, meaning Doctor Who was now guaranteed a run of at least 26 weeks. The controller also made positive noises about a possible further 13, taking the total to 39, but told Wilson that he would not be able to make a firm decision on this until the New Year. After so much uncertainty about how many episodes would be made, or even if the series would make it to the screen at all, and following the headaches caused by the need to remake The Dead Planet, this was the best news the Doctor Who production team could have hoped for ahead of the show's launch the following day.

However, it was a launch that was about to be completely overshadowed by events totally outside of the control of anyone involved with Doctor Who.

The news that President Kennedy had been shot in Dallas reached Britain at 6.42pm, as the cast and crew of Doctor Who would have been preparing to begin work recording The Survivors at Lime Grove. It was the first occasion upon which the cast had seen the Dalek props in full, with the operators having sat in just the lower halves of the casings for the rehearsals. As William Russell recalled in the BBC Radio 2 documentary Doctor Who - 30 Years in 1993, this was the first moment when they realised that something special might be at hand.

We laughed at them when we saw them originally in the studio, because of course we saw them without their tops, with just an actor sitting in this sort of half-dustbin peddling himself around, and we thought they were ludicrous! But when they were all dressed up they weren't ludicrous, and when the sound was added, Peter Hawkins's voice, you know, "I will exterminate you!" and all that business... Wonderful! And they became very frightening things.

Elsewhere in London, the Guild of Television Producers and Directors' annual dinner and ball was taking place at the Dorchester Hotel, with most of the senior executives from the BBC and ITV in attendance. When the man ultimately in charge of all BBC television, Kenneth Adam, was reached at the event, he decided that normal programming should continue, even though Kennedy's death had been announced just before 7.30pm. The BBC went back to its scheduled programmes, showing comedy series Here's Harry and Scottish medical drama Dr Finlay's Casebook, a decision that drew thousands of complaints.

The BBC would be more careful and considered in its programming across the rest of the weekend, and over the following week. But Doctor Who would go on as scheduled on Saturday evening. Just how much of the audience would be in any mood to watch it, and what if any impact it could make in the circumstances, would have to remain to be seen.

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SOURCES: The Handbook: The First Doctor – The William Hartnell Years: 1963-1966, David J Howe, Mark Stammers, Stephen James Walker (Doctor Who Books, 1994); The Independent - How the Kennedy assassination caught the BBC on the hop; Doctor Who - 30 Years (BBC Radio 2, 1993)
Compiled by:
Paul Hayes