The Countdown Begins

Series 9

BEVERLY HILLS — If any fans of the BBC’s “Doctor Who” think Peter Capaldi seemed a little tentative in his first season as the Doctor, Capaldi agrees.

“I think it’s more interesting to explore how someone develops rather than arriving fully formed,” Capaldi told TV critics here Friday.

When Capaldi took over the role in the beloved BBC series last season, he became the 12th Doctor. He will return for the next season, which launches Sept. 19 on BBC America.

“There’s a lot of struggle to find the right tone,” Capaldi said. It would be a bad idea to arrive feeling certain of how he had to be.

“And you’ll see more of that struggle this season.”

Head writer and executive producer Stephen Moffat said Capaldi isn’t approaching the role any differently than previous Doctors.

“The new Doctor always takes a moment to find out who he is,” said Moffat. “It’s interesting to see someone become a completely different person and not know yourself anymore.”

The Doctor will have familiar company when the new season starts.

Jenna Coleman returns as Clara, who Coleman said will be “more confident and reckless” this season.

Michelle Gomez returns as his nemesis, Missy, and Maisie Williams from “Game of Thrones” will be a guest star.

Capaldi laughed when asked how long he intends to keep the Doctor role, with its famously high turnover.

“At least through September,” he said.

“This is the only job in television where the first thing they ask you is when you’re going to leave,” Moffat said. (NY Daily News)

Lies, Damn, Lies, and TV

As everyone knows, there are two kinds of lies: Bad ones that are hurtful, and less bad ones that are a little less hurtful. For example, telling someone you like their outfit even though it’s awful isn’t nearly as bad as, say, telling them you’re not sleeping with their husband even though you totally are. They’re both lies, but one probably won’t result in you getting punched in the face, and the other probably will. For people who work in certain kinds of movies and TV shows, the more benign type of lie is sometimes a deeply important part of the creative process. That’s why J.J. Abrams refused to admit that Khan was in Star Trek Into Darkness before the movie came out. He thought lying to the audience would be worth the big chuckle he’d get when we all realized the truth. (Even though it wasn’t.)

It was fairly obvious, so not a surprise. Now Tom Baker in “The Day of the Doctor” THAT was a surprise.

“I really think you might.” still sends shivers up my spine.

Now, Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat seems to be in an almost-identical situation. Back in March, we reported that Game Of Thrones star Maisie Williams would be appearing in the show’s upcoming season as an undisclosed character. Fans speculated rampantly about who she’d be playing, and when Williams briefly appeared in the Doctor Who Comic-Con trailer, that speculation somehow got even more rampant. Apparently, though, we should all stop trying to guess who she’s playing, because an Associated Press report says that she’s “a brand-new character, not someone from the Doctor’s past.” Well, that settles that! Unless, of course, we’re being lied to…

And The Moff never lies… :)

Moffat goes on to pat himself on the back a little, adding that “once you see what she’s up to…you’ll appreciate what a clever idea it was.”

The character or the lie or the appearance of a lie??

It better not be The 13th Doctor! :(

He also says that it’ll take the audience “a moment or two” to figure out what’s going on, but apparently it’ll be a great reveal. To us, this practically screams “Benedict Cumberbatch isn’t playing Khan in Star Trek,” but there is a slim chance that Williams will really be a totally new character. If that’s the case, here’s our theory: She’s playing herself. It’ll be Maisie Williams, the actor, going on an adventure with the Doctor.

We’ll find out how right we are when Doctor Who returns on September 19. (We’re totally right.)

It will be a Game of Thrones crossover and she’ll be playing that character and in undisclosed adventure the Doctor is secretly one of George RR Martin’s characters!  (I don’t watch Game of Thrones so I can go any farther with that).

So why do you want to be lied to?

For the same reason that some people hate spoilers. We want to be surprised. But we can’t help speculating so The Moff attempts feats of misdirection, which is one of the oldest form of distraction and lie.

The Speculation on “John Hurt is The Doctor” was rampant.

I even had my own pet theory, knowing full well that I was going to be wrong in the end, but hoping somewhere deep down I could go “Yeah! I got you, Moffat!”

So when Maisie Williams turns out to be the regenerated Susan Foreman I can say…Oh wait a minute… :)

There’s this cryptic picture from the BBC on Instagram:

eldrad

ELDRAD MUST LIVE!

:)

London Guide

A Whovian’s Guide to London

Guest contributor Ryan Fleetwood takes us on a Whovian tour of London.

(with a few comments by your truly who has been 4 times now).

doctor-who-deep-breath-trex

As the next series of Doctor Who begins to not feel quite so far away, how should a Whovian pass the summer waiting for it? What better than a trip to the city that has been so involved in Doctor Who through the years, London? In this article I’ll provide a quick run-through of most of the parts of London that have played their part in the last half decade of Who, but also suggest that, so steeped in Who-ology as the city is, perhaps our heroic Time Lord should start venturing further afield more often.

Westminster

daleks-Westminster-Bridge-1964In fact a city in its own right, Westminster lies at the heart of London and is home to many of its most iconic landmarks. In it can be found much of the infrastructure of the British government, and it was here that the Slitheen ship crashed into the Thames in Aliens of London, not before colliding with what is now called the Elizabeth Tower of the Houses of Parliament (strictly speaking, ‘Big Ben’ is the nickname of the bell in the tower, and not the tower itself). The two parter also sees the Ninth Doctor and Rose trapped in 10 Downing Street, before fulfilling many people’s dreams by organising the launching of a missile at it. Judging by the glimpses of it in Rose, it was also where the two first met, with Rose seen lunching with Mickey at Trafalgar Square and apparently getting off the bus for work at Piccadilly Circus.

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Buckingham-Palace-voyage-of-the-damnedBuckingham Palace is situated in St James’s Park here as well, home of Queen Elizabeth II who not only tolerates the Doctor parking his TARDIS in the grounds but also owes the survival of the palace to him after it narrowly avoided destruction-by-Titanic in Voyage of the Damned. The Cabinet War Rooms lie just off Whitehall, used by Churchill during the Blitz and where the Daleks once did some temp work, as seen in Victory of the Daleks. At the top of Whitehall is Trafalgar Square, where the Twelfth Doctor landed his TARDIS to find the city, and indeed the planet, covered by forest in In the Forest of the Night.

day of the doctor batch b (20)At the north end of the square is the National Gallery, which was revealed in Day of the Doctor to have a secret annexe, the ‘Under-Gallery’, which includes in its collection 3D pictures and ‘Gallifrey Falls No More’. Just across the river (though technically therefore outside Westminster) is the London Eye, once used by the Nestene Consciousness as a transmitter for the activation and control of the Autons, in Rose. Further south stands Millbank Tower, the site of the World Energy Conference in Terror of the Zygons that saw the Skarasen, implied to be the Loch Ness Monster, swim up the Thames to it.

1/10 of all London Underground stations lie within the City of Westminster, and the transport system (of which only 45% is actually underground) was the site of battles between UNIT and robot Yeti in The Web of Fear.

City of London

dark-water-promo-pics-(17)The actual City of London itself covers just 1 square mile and has a population of just 7,000, though this soars by about 300,000 during weekdays when grumpy commuters journey in to work. As such, any Londoners not living in Westminster or the City of London (that’s approximately 97% of Greater London’s population) are not technically living in a city. Home to the financial centre of the capital, it also houses St Pauls Cathedral, the favourite spot for the Cybermen when they try to invade and where Missy based herself in Dark Water/Death in Heaven. Tucked behind the cathedral is where Paternoster Row once stood before being devastated in the Blitz, which in the Victorian era was home to a crime fighting ‘gang’. This area of London was also wrecked by the eponymous Great Fire in 1666, following the Doctor’s encounter with Terileptils in The Visitation. The starting point of the fire at Pudding Lane is commemorated nearby by a monument, known imaginatively as ‘The Monument’.

Underneath the city runs the River Fleet, which, along with its connected sewers, could be accessed in The Talons of Weng Chiang from underneath the Palace Theatre and was home to some giant rats, left over from the experiments of Magnus Greel.

P1010258 2015 Trip

P1010265Found this 1 block behind St. Pauls…

paddington Paddington Station, your gateway to Cardiff

The North

hartnell-war-machinesThe BT Tower, originally opening as the Post Office Tower and formerly the tallest building in the UK, stands just over the boundary from Westminster in Camden, and was where the super-computer WOTAN was based. WOTAN caused headaches for pernickety fans everywhere after famously seeking someone called “Doctor Who” in The War Machines. Further north into Haringey is Alexandra Palace, where during the coronation of Elizabeth II in The Idiot’s Lantern the Wire attempted to use the antenna tower to restore itself with electromagnetic energy from television viewers.

The South

shard-bellsImmediately south of the Thames from the City is Southwark, one of few locations in the UK to have a cathedral but not city status. Southwark Cathedral itself is where Professor Lazarus ultimately met his demise, courtesy of the Doctor’s organ-playing skills in The Lazarus Experiment. Nearby is the Shard, the largest building in the EU that was used as a headquarters for Miss Kizlet in The Bells of St John, and also serves as a good spot for some anti-gravity motorcycling. Still in Southwark is the Globe Theatre, though this is a reconstructed version of the one that saw an attempted Carrionite invasion in The Shakespeare Code. In a parallel universe in The Age of Steel, and further west along the Thames, Battersea Power Station was used as a Cyber-conversion centre and the base for John Lumic, both human and upgraded, as he began his plans to upgrade ‘Pete’s World’.

The East

totters-lane-unearthlyDoctor Who took off from the East End, with curious teachers Ian and Barbara first discovering the Doctor and the TARDIS in a junkyard in Shoreditch right at the beginning of it all in An Unearthly Child. As such, this area has been returned to several times over the years, as the location of Coal Hill School and the burial of the Hand of Omega and a battle in the Dalek Civil War in Remembrance of the Daleks.

unit-tower-of-londonTwo important institutions have had their bases in East London, with UNIT based in the Tower of London in the revival era, and Torchwood having previously operated from 1 Canada Square, known as Canary Wharf and at that time the tallest building in the country. As a result, the former docklands were the focal point of the conflict between the Daleks and Cybermen in Doomsday. A Torchwood laboratory underneath the Thames Barrier was the scene of the confrontation between the Doctor and the Racnoss, culminating in the draining of the river in The Runaway Bride. In the alternate timeline in Turn Left, this is where the Doctor is killed. The Olympic Games were held across the city in 2012, with the main stadium in Stratford, where the opening ceremony narrowly escaped being seriously scuppered by having its entire capacity turned into a drawing in a residential street nearby in Fear Her. The Chula ambulance also landed in Limehouse during the Blitz, leading to a gas mask zombie outbreak centred around the (fictional) Albion Hospital.

P1010222 From Tower Bridge — Tower of London UNIT HQ

The West

tardis-heathrowWest London seems to be popular with companions, with Donna Noble hailing from Chiswick, Ace from Perivale, and Sarah Jane Smith taking up residence in Ealing. Heathrow Airport can be found here, 14 miles from Central London and the centre of concern when a Concorde vanishes en route to the airport, in fact travelling back 140 million years, in Time-Flight. In Chelsea is the cheerfully named World’s End Estate (no, genuinely), where the TARDIS will eventually land in The Dalek Invasion of Earth, that also sees several of the parts of London mentioned in the article deserted and in ruin.

museum

One of my favorite places, The British Museum of Natural History.

Beyond London

It’s undoubtedly the case that London has been a recurring and prominent part of Doctor Who over the years, and it’s shown off much of the city’s sights and history. However, much as I love the city, with the whole of space and time at his fingertips, perhaps the Doctor should begin venturing further afield. There are many other cities with fascinating histories and sights to be explored, and many more non-city locations as well. Thus, I hope this article achieved two things. The first, to quite simply provide a guide to London and Doctor Who, perhaps stoke an interest in visiting, or provide new sights to see, and to chuck the odd pub quiz fact at you. But second, to start you thinking about where you may want the Doctor to explore, either near you or somewhere you like or find interesting. As Doctor Who goes from strength to strength, and grows internationally, perhaps this should be reflected more in his travels. Of course, he could still come back every now and then…

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Canterbury Cathedral. It will blow your mind…

Curious Fandom

A few days ago it was announced that in advance of the Series 9 premiere the Series 8 2-Part Finale would be released in Theaters nationwide with a prequel for Series 9 included.

I jumped right on it. Maybe a little too fast and didn’t get the best theater for it. But oh, well, at least the set won’t shake.

But then, this morning, I was thinking about why I, and hundreds (maybe  thousands), would show up to a theater and pay $14 to watch a 3D showing of an 2-Part episode we already have on blu-ray to begin with!

It’s not like we just watched it on TV and a few days later went to the theater and paid to watched it again…. :)

Is it the Prequel to the episode that will be on that weekend?

Is it the fan experience of showing up to a theater full of like minded Doctor Who Geeks?

The answer would be, YES.

Doctor Who fans love to get together and geek out with each other. Otherwise, Gallifrey One wouldn’t be going into it’s 27th year in 2016 and sold out in under an hour.

We are Doctor Who fans, we are different.

After all, do fans of Arrow or Agents of SHIELD show up at movie theaters for a prequel?

No.

But we do.

And we’re suckers $$$ for it. Hook, Line and sinker.

The BBC and BBC America are so lucky to have us. :)

So rejoice fans of the best TV show in the world, it’s only 7 weeks to go.

I will be there with my 7th Doctor on.

Join us won’t you. Bwah hahahahahahahahahahahahaha…. :)

Charon The Spotlight

Doctor Who has reached a level of consciousness in the US that it is now invading NASA! :)

http://time.com/3976279/pluto-moon-names-charon-scifi-star-wars-trek/

NASA have released plans for the naming of areas of Pluto’s moon Charon, based upon the International Astronomical Union‘s recommendations that these would relate to “destinations and milestones of fictional space and other exploration; fictional and mythological vessels of space and other exploration; fictional and mythological voyagers, travellers and explorers.”

This has led to proposals of names from a number of sci-fi shows including Doctor Who, which sees a large crater on the surface named “Gallifrey Macula”, with a nearby rift named “TARDIS Chasma”. Star Trek is honoured with a plain named the “Vulcan Planum”, containing craters such as “Spock” and “Sulu” and mons like “Kirk” and “Uhura” – there are also features named after Star Wars characters, and also sci-fi writers/directors such as Arthur C Clarke and Stanley Kubrick (2001: A Space Odyssey).
The Tardis chasma crosses the Gallifrey macula — named for the Doctor’s vessel and home planet respectively. Which could make for an awkward moment if the Time Lord ever lands there.

Doctor Who related names on Charon (Credit: NASA)
Image: NASA

The names are to be submitted to the IAU for final approval.

Pluto_Map

Capaldi’s Top 10

Doctor Who 8 Peter Capaldi TARDIS London
Peter Capaldi proves again, just what an uber fan boy he really is…
Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi has picked out his favourite episodes of the show to cheer himself up.

Speaking to Doctor Who: The Fan Show, Capaldi was asked to name which Doctor Who adventures he’d pop into his DVD player on a rainy day.

Here are his 10 choices…

 

‘Rose’

Doctor Who Billie Piper Rose“I think ‘Rose’ is always great. I think Christopher Eccleston is so fabulous in that and Billie Piper and also the courage of bringing Doctor Who back is very exciting.”

 

‘The Girl in the Fireplace’

Doctor Who The Girl in the Fireplace“‘The Girl in the Fireplace’ is fabulous. David [Tennant] is absolutely fabulous in that. You know, I think he has the wonderful quality of a romantic lead about him.”

 

‘The Vampires of Venice’

Doctor Who vampires of Venice“‘The Vampires of Venice’ I like very much. I think Matt [Smith] is fabulous in that. He is great. He’s always able to walk that line between being comic and dramatic very nimbly. He’s brilliant at that.”

 

‘The Rings of Akhaten’

Doctor Who Rings of Akhaten“‘The Rings of Akhaten’ I like a lot.”

That one should annoy some of the fanboy elites who pissed all over this one.

‘The Ark in Space’

Doctor Who The Ark in Space

“From the old classic series, there’s so many there. I love ‘The Ark in Space’. I think ‘The Ark in Space’ is great because I love Tom Baker with his hair, it’s just like the most wildest hair ever.

“I think later on as you watch the rest of his time as Doctor Who he started to get a perm or something. But in his first season, he looks more like Hapro Marx towards the end of his run. But in his first season he’s just got this absolute mess of Bohemian hair which is about this size. It’s like, what would you call it? A Tom Fro? A Doc Fro. He’s got a big Doc Fro.

“And also his speech in that. And about human beings. He just takes grasp of the role of Doctor Who, you know, in that story so completely.”

‘Terror of the Autons’

Doctor Who Jon Pertwee Terror of the Autons Jo Grant

“‘Terror of the Autons’ – do you want me to go on?”

‘Frontier in Space’

Doctor Who Frontier in Space The Master

“You know, I could sit and watch Jon Pertwee do anything. I could sit and watch him read the telephone books. Every time I watch him because he has such authority. You know, if you’re in trouble you want those doors to swing open and Jon Pertwee to come stormin in with a flap of his cape.

“I love the last episode of ‘Frontier in Space’. Isn’t that one of the great Doctor Who stories ever? It’s fabulous, because you’ve got everything in that. But also magnificently, it’s one of those episodes where you go ‘is he going to regenerate now?’ and it was so weird that he was knocked out and he touches… I think it’s the first time we see the TARDIS telepathic circuits. He says ‘I’m sending a message to the Time Lords!’ – because he’s about to keel over.

“But the telepathic circuits then are just like two big discs, whereas we have this lovely rubbery stuff that you touch now.”

‘The Dalek Invasion of Earth’

Doctor Who The Dalek Invasion of Earth

“‘The Dalek Invasion of Earth’ is fantastic.”

‘The Web of Fear’

Doctor Who the web of fear

“‘The Web of Fear’ is another fabulous Doctor Who story that just has to be watched, with Patrick Troughton.”

‘The Mind Robber’

Doctor Who The Mind Robber Second Patrick Troughton

‘The Mind Robber’ is absolutely brilliant. Watch that if you get any time on a rainy day. Because Patrick Troughton is just one of the most extraordinary actors.

“Just his delicacy, his ability to jump from irate to being kindly and clownish.”

Cinema WHO 2015

‘Doctor Who’ Returns to Cinemas with a Never-Before-Seen Season 9 Prequel

BBC Worldwide North America and Fathom Events announce the return of Doctor Who to the big screen for a two-night special theatrical event, Doctor Who: Dark Water/Death in Heaven in spectacular 3D, starring Peter Capaldi. In this epic two-part finale, the Doctor comes face-to-face with the mysterious Missy, and an impossible choice looms. With Cybermen on the streets of London, old friends unite against old enemies, and the Doctor takes to the air in a startling new role.

Doctor Who: Dark Water/Death in Heaven, the show’s two-part eighth season finale, will be presented in RealD™ 3D and Dolby Atmos sound (where available) on September 15 and 16 at 7:30 p.m. (local time). The event will feature The Doctor’s Meditation — a special prequel scene to the first episode of Season 9 — and an exclusive interview with Doctor Who stars Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, hosted by Wil Wheaton (Big Bang Theory, Star Trek: Nemesis), in addition to the two-part Season 8 finale.

Tickets for Doctor Who: Dark Water/Death in Heaven in 3D can be purchased online starting Friday, July 31 by visiting www.FathomEvents.com, or participating theater box offices. Fans throughout the U.S. will be able to enjoy the event in approximately 700 movie theaters through Fathom’s Digital Broadcast Network. For a complete list of theater locations visit the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change).

See you there!

NextFlix Season 8 Coming VERY Soon

Streamers Rejoice!

The moment Doctor Who fans all over the United States have been waiting for is finally here — Netflix has revealed their slate of movie and TV show additions for August 2015, and Doctor Who‘s Series 8 is among the new releases.

Yesterday, we revealed that Doctor Who Series 8 would arrive on Hulu’s subscription service on August 8, and now we can confirm that Series 8 will hit Netflix on the same day. (Yes, sadly, this is only for American Netflix users; Series 8 will arrive on August 31 for Netflix users in Australia and New Zealand. UK fans are out of luck — the BBC keeps a tight grip on Doctor Who in its home country).

Still, a “Yes, Please!”

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Former Doctor Who companion and Emmerdale star Frazer Hines along with former Blue Peter, Catchphrase and Screen Test host Mark Curry are currently starring in Agatha Christie’s play ” And Then There Were None” at Milton Keynes Theatre.

We caught up with them before the first night’s performance to ask them about the play and also for their thoughts about the programmes which brought them into the national spotlight.

Refreshingly, both actors speak passionately and positively about their past shows and clearly appreciate the exposure they provided them with.

In the video below, you will find out what happened when Frazer met current Doctor Who, Peter Capaldi and how he began impersonating the vocals of the Doctor he travelled most with, Patrick Troughton. The way he takes on the voice of the 2nd Doctor is eerily accurate and it’s almost like Troughton is still here with us.(bedfordshire-news.co.uk)

Also in the video, Mark Curry discusses his many roles over the years and his thoughts on how Doctor Who fans would respond to the return of Jamie.

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Hinchcliffe & Holmes

Guest contributor Will Brown explains why this era is often considered among the finest in the show’s history.

deadly-assassin-tom-baker

Naturally for a show that has graced our screens for half a century, Doctor Who has had several producers, script-editors and, later on, head-writers. Each of them have brought with their position their own perspective of what the series should do and aspire to be, resulting in numerous styles. These easily define the television series into different periods, some far more successful than others. Easily one of, if not the, highest regarded era is the tenure of Philip Hinchcliffe and Robert Holmes, producer and script-editor respectively, between the years 1975 and 1977, encompassing seasons 12 to 14. This article aims to explain why many fans, I being one of them, adore this period.

The Fourth Doctor

doctor-who-pyramids-of-mars-doctor-baker Certainly one of the more significant reasons for this deep appreciation was Tom Baker’s portrayal as the Doctor’s fourth incarnation. Baker gave an immensely enjoyable and endearing performance, that has definitely stood the test of time, perhaps becoming the definitive Doctor and the one to ‘beat’, as it were. I highly doubt this legacy could have happened without the solid foundation this era lay down for Baker’s later four seasons.

Baker is, and by quite some distance, my all-time favourite Doctor. In the role, he managed to bring an unadulterated enthusiasm and energy. Baker has since stated that he was not playing a part, but rather saying the lines as himself; this really shows, as never does he feel fake or forced, at least during the Hinchcliffe-Holmes era. He could easily switch between farcical and angry in an instant, displaying a wide range of different emotions. This bohemian eccentric was great to watch on screen. With such a strong actor at the helm, Doctor Who was allowed to flourish like it never had before has not done since.

The Companions

genesis-of-the-daleks-sarah-jane-harryBut what exactly is the Doctor without his trusted companions at his side? In spite of the fact that this era has a grand total of three full-time travellers in the TARDIS, they are some of the best remembered among dozens of others.

The most notable of these assistants was Sarah Jane Smith, played by the late Elizabeth Sladen, who had originally been introduced in Jon Pertwee’s final season. She had been a good companion during the Third Doctor’s era, but here she became a truly great one. Sladen was endlessly relatable as Sarah Jane, being strong and determined throughout all her efforts, but with a vulnerable side, as well as being occasionally belittled by the Doctor. What also helped is that Baker and Sladen had great chemistry, their on-screen alter egos having a friendship bordering on romance.

This contemporary journalist was hugely contrasted with the savage Leela, played by Louise Jameson, a member of a tribe devolved from a human research crew. It also marked a stark departure from the modern-day companions of the seventies up until that point. Although she lacked an understanding of the universe around her, Leela could easily defend both herself and the Doctor. Through the Doctor’s guidance, she became more well-reasoned and knowledgeable, proving to be a worthy ally of his.

These two companions rather overshadow the navy doctor who treated the Doctor in his post-regenerative insanity, even being tied up at one point. I am, of course, referring to Harry Sullivan, who served in this companion role for only six stories, all with Sarah Jane. Despite being a bumbling fool who often gets into trouble, Ian Marter underplays these particular weaknesses and creates a credible character. His superb interplay with both the Doctor and Sarah Jane was also an absolute joy to watch.

The Villains

Sutekh-doctor-whoWhen I think of the Hinchcliffe-Holmes era, several original foes and species immediately spring to mind: the Wirrn, Davros, the Zygons, Sutekh, Morbius, the Krynoid, Eldrad, the sandminer robots, Li H’sen Chang, Mr Sin and Magnus Greel. The period was a gold-mine of truly great one-time baddies which have been deeply explored and expanded in other media. It all boils down to the concept and execution in the end. The idea of the Krynoid, a plant that consumes animals, is simply fantastic, and the image of the Fourth Doctor succumbing to the torture of Sutekh confirms the enemy’s might and strength is unforgettable.

The era also had stories featuring returning villains, although Hinchcliffe and Holmes moved away from this approach after season 12. The amazing Genesis of the Daleks charts, well, the genesis of the Daleks and The Sontaran Experiment depicts the torturous acts commited by a warrior of Sontar. Whilst these stories were ‘dignified’ appearances, Revenge of the Cybermen is quite frankly embarrassing. But camp Cybermen were just a blip in the midst of excellence.

The Stories

the-Talons-of-Weng-ChiangAll of the prior factors play a major part, but none more so than the stories that make up not just this era, but Doctor Who itself. Many fantastic, deep, dark, thought-provoking stories, some of which can easily be found in the mid-seventies. It is quite possibly the most consistently brilliant run of stories in the show’s television history, despite the incredibly rare sub-par story (the aforementioned Revenge being it). Almost every story here is a stone cold classic, and even those that are not perhaps among them (The Android Invasion or The Masque of Mandragora are good examples) have many merits to be found.

It would be rude of me not to make some recommendations for those deprived of their Hinchcliffe-Holmes goodness. Genesis of the Daleks is some of the greatest television I have ever seen and, apart from the clams and the odd bit of padding now and then, is astonishing. The Seeds of Doom takes some classic sci-fi tropes and crafts a magnificent tale from it. The Talons of Weng-Chiang is a gritty murder mystery that introduces everybody’s favourite group of Victorian investigators of infernal incidents, Jago and Litefoot. There are several others, but that is the cream of the crop and the absolute peak of Doctor Who, for me at least.

As you can probably tell, I highly implore you to explore the gothic show that was Doctor Who for three years, as it is a tour de force in storytelling, featuring a handful of the most-loved serials of all time. I just hope you enjoy it as much as I have. (doctorwhotv)

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