Phoenix Comic Con

Starts today for the next 4 days.

I have 3 Panels.

12 Must See Doctor Who Stories! –Fri 6pm
One story from each Doctor that any Doctor Who (or potential fan) should watch
I’m doing Doctors 1, 2 & 3
Where Should I Start Watching Doctor Who? –Sat 10:30am
A broad panel regarding where to start broken down to different genres and Classic and Nu Who.
“I am The Master and You Will Obey Me”: Discussing an Iconic Doctor Who Nemesis Sat 3pm
I am doing Anthony Ainley (and some on Missy).
Hope to see anyone there. Enjoy.

Doctor Who is a British superhero

It’s been 31 years since Peter Davison put down his sonic screwdriver, Tardis key and celery stick and regenerated into Colin Baker.

He will now get the chance to come face to face with some of the Timelord’s most feared adversaries again when he hosts the Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular at the SSE Hydro next week.

Davison, who played the fifth incarnation of the Timelord, was asked to host the spectacular, which combines Murray Gold’s music, played by a live orchestra, with some of the show’s favourite monsters, after introducing a segment at the Doctor Who Prom in the Royal Albert Hall. He toured Australia and New Zealand with the production before bringing it to Scotland for the first time.

He said: “The show is a bit of everything really. At its heart it’s a symphonic concert but behind the stage we run various clips and we have Doctor Who aliens and monsters creeping around the auditorium, sneaking up on you and I introduce pieces of music and have a bit of a joke.

“I think hearing a symphony orchestra play live is something really special. I just love the idea of these families coming along who would never go to an orchestral concert and hearing the power of that music being played.”

Davison took over the role of the Doctor from Tom Baker in 1981 and played the part for three years.

However, despite the BBC hit sci-fi show’s cancellation in 1989, he knew it would return.

He said: “I always thought it would come back because it was such a brilliant idea and it had been successful for so long and the fans are so devoted. I didn’t anticipate it would come back in the way that it did as the BBC’s number one prestigious show so that was a surprise but it was very nice because the first producer Russell T Davies was a big fan.”

The show began in 1963 and Davison believes the key to its longevity has been its creativity.

He said: “He’s sort of a British superhero. He doesn’t fit the mould of American superheroes, he doesn’t have special powers but he’s definitely a force for good.

“It’s such a wonderful idea and the scope of the programme is enormous. The genre of science fiction, love it or hate it, means you can tackle virtually any story in virtually any period of time. I think that’s been the secret of its success, it’s inspired creative parts of people’s brains.”

Davison has returned to the role a few times, appearing in the 1993 Children in Need special Dimensions in Time, 2007’s Timecrash with son-in-law David Tennant and the Five(ish) Doctors, which he wrote for the show’s 50th anniversary as well as numerous Big Finish audio adventures.

He has even influenced the new show, which returned to screens in 2005, with many people who work on it, including current showrunner Steven Moffat, saying he was ‘their Doctor’.

He said: “It’s great. I myself was influenced by an earlier Doctor. Patrick Troughton was my Doctor and he had an element of vulnerability which I wanted to bring back into the show and I think that’s something that people identify with.

“A lot of people have come up to me and said Doctor Who helped them through a difficult part in their childhood. I think he’s a great role model.”

Davison’s also a big fan of new Doctor, Peter Capaldi.

He said: “I like his portrayal enormously. I interviewed him for BBC America before it went out and he had some great ideas. He wanted to do a slightly different take and his was that his Doctor wasn’t entirely sure that the human race was worth bothering with. Obviously, in the end, he does but it’s an amusing take.”

However, he does not believe that the show is becoming too scary for children.

He said: “I think adults are the last people who can judge whether Doctor Who is scary, they have no qualifications at all. What we think our children find scary, they find tremendously exciting and invigorating. There are bound to be some people who are a bit scared and they might even have the odd nightmare and of course that’s unfortunate but it comes out of loving the series.

“It’s always had that effect really. In my day there were children who used to spend the entire series watching the programme from behind a sofa.”

The Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular will visit the SSE Hydro in Glasgow on Friday, May 29.

My Close Encounter with a Dalek

At Wembly Arena, May 23rd 2015. :)

oh and Then there was Peter Davison:


I am now home. Tomorrow it’s back to the grind of reality.

What a time I had though.

I went to The Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff last Wednesday and saw the new Capaldi version of the “Experience” and the re-modeled Archive Display.

Still one of the best things to do ever, as a Doctor Who Fan.

Then the Symphony at Wembley Arena was in all words, Spectacular.

It was a very emotional night and a beautiful thing to see and hear.

Peter Davison had some more fun with himself and he good-naturedly pick on Colin Baker (his successor as the Sixth Doctor).

I was kind of underwhelmed by the monsters running in the audience but have a feeling that has more to do with the limitation of the venue but at one point being 12 feet from Dalek that looks right at you, that was a thrill. A Cybermen can even closer, as did a Dream Crab headed individual.

Both the Experience and the Symphony were Capaldi-centric but they hit a lot of heights.

If you get the chance, go for it. You won’t be sorry.

More to come as I get more sleep and process my hoard. :)

Simply Spectacular

I was at the Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular at Wembly Arena yesterday.

That was one hell of a good show.

Now it’s time to go home… Back to Reality…

Just a taste…

The Man with the Gold touch

The Telegraph:

Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular: Murray Gold interview

As the tour begins, the prolific TV composer speaks to Benji Wilson about putting the ‘ooo’ in Doctor Who

Doctor Who director Murray Gold Photo: Photo Copyright John Chapple /
 By Benji Wilson

Murray Gold and I are singing at each other in a manner that I later realise is both slightly embarrassing and impossible to recreate in print. The subject is the Doctor Who theme tune. In 2005, when the sci-fi series was resurrected by Russell T Davies, Gold was asked to spruce up the famous opening. So how, I say, do you improve upon “Dun-der-dun, der-dun-der-dun, der-dun-der-dun, der OOO WAAA WAAAAAA?”

“The simplicity of that tune is what makes it so easy to change,” says Gold. “The only thing that’s annoying is that glam rock triplet beat, which makes it sound like The Sweet. As soon as you add drums to that you end up with a party tune from the Seventies. That’s why I broke that up on series one.”

Gold’s BBC paymasters evidently liked what he did, because he has been writing all of the music for Doctor Who ever since, including a second reworking of the theme tune in 2011. Although he is a prolific and successful composer – most recently he wrote the music for Last Tango in Halifax and The Musketeers – he describes Doctor Who as his main employment. His trademark, at least on Doctor Who, is epic, stirring anthems that drive the action forward while remaining eminently hummable in the playground the next day.

He says that his girlfriend “can’t stand” the programme and that he rarely meets people who like it in his daily life spent between New York and Los Angeles. Gold, 46, is a Doctor Who devotee and it’s an affection that stems back to his Seventies boyhood when he was obsessed with Tom Baker’s incarnation of the Time Lord.

“I get very sentimental when I talk about Doctor Who – he’s like an intergalactic Atticus Finch. It’s one of the last great morality tales out there but it also celebrates life. For that reason I think it’s a great show for kids. I couldn’t write this much music for it if I didn’t feel that way.”

The Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular, hosted by the fifth doctor Peter Davison, takes this music around the world, and is touring the UK next month.

“We do it with the National Orchestra of Wales, plus a big choir, huge screens, monsters, the works – there are 150 people on stage. It’s anthemic music, so the emotional pitch of the show is like a rock gig. Because Doctor Who’s a geeky sort of show – one that celebrates wit and humour, rather than brawn and power – it’s a congregation of people who are revelling in their underdog status. I like that.”

As a TV critic, I tell Gold, I have heard several comments saying that certain TV series seem to have too much music, or that it is too loud and overbearing.

“Some people definitely have a language/music thing where it’s difficult in their brains for them to deal with both. I can’t play the piano and talk to somebody at the same time. A lot of people can. I think the people who say the music is too loud are expressing a subjective viewpoint and that is how they hear it – it’s a difficulty of processing the logic of language with the emotive language of music simultaneously.”

Gold is a funny, mischievous, self-deprecating presence. He characterises his path to his pre-eminence among screen composers as a matter of luck and good timing. He never attended music school, instead relying on piano lessons “from Mrs Winifred Ayling in Portchester”. Having taught his grandma, she refused on principle to raise her prices and charged him 25p per half-hour. He ended up at Corpus Christi, Cambridge, and immersed himself in theatre, becoming music director of Footlights after writing both plays and the music for them. Continuing in a similar vein after graduation, he got his big break when he met the director Marc Munden, who recommended him for the BBC’s 1998 adaptation of Thackeray’s Vanity Fair after turning him down for a previous gig. The result was one of the most innovative TV scores of the past 20 years.

“That score came about after Marc and I had been sitting around saying, ‘Well, this is about the death of the middle classes, this is about a bourgeois disaster and a woman claiming her stake in middle-class society – so let’s try to make it Brechtian, let’s try and make it a bit Kurt Weill’.”

“The BBC did get concerned about what was going on,” he admits of his decision to employ amateur musicians to record the soundtrack. But while the score was pilloried in some quarters, it got Gold noticed. The first of four Bafta nominations for Best Original Television Music followed.

The writer Paul Abbott (State of Play, Shameless) was an admirer, and suggested Gold to the television producer Nicola Shindler and writer Russell T Davies, who were looking for a composer for their new series, Queer as Folk, about a group of young gay men in Manchester. Gold became both Abbott and Davies’s composer of choice, creating the music for this and subsequent landmark dramas, including Clocking Off and Shameless.

“I came of age when a group of social realist, British, particularly Northern dramatists were coming into their own. Somehow I became their flagbearer,” he says. “I would write their anthems. There was so much passion in the first season of Shameless, so much fantastic stuff in Clocking Off. There’s nothing better than some of those shows I’ve worked on. America can’t come close. They’ve got a grit and an honesty about them.”

His method appears to be that he doesn’t have one, although when he stumbles upon a good tune he will try to find a place to use it.

“A lot of the time it’s just because I’ve been listening to something and I want to make some music like that,” he says.

For Doctor Who, however, he took a different tack, composing some of the music for the recent Doctors based on the actor’s personality.

“A lot of the music for Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi was written even prior to script; it came up through just watching the new actor in other things he’d been in.”

How would Gold describe these actors’ defining traits?

“Capaldi is direct, to the point, abrasive. Whereas Matt was gangly, awkward, eccentric. David Tennant was passionate, buccaneering. Sometimes parents tell me their kids can listen to one bit of music and know not only what doctor it is but what episode it’s from. That’s the highest praise.”

The Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular tours the UK from May 23

And will be in New York City Later this year.

Ten Years of Jack

Incredibly it was TEN years ago (yesterday May 21st) that time agent Captain Jack Harkness joined Doctor Who.

At the time, he hooked up with Billie Piper and Christopher Eccleston in World War II London, as they fought off some mummy-needing gas mask zombies.

Since then John Barrowman has popped up now and again to team up with the Doctor (though, sadly, his last appearance was David Tennant’s finale The End of Time in 2010), and here are some of his best bits that prove what a Doctor Who legend the Captain is.

‘Excellent bottom!’


With New Who brought a certain sexual swagger and confidence and this was displayed uncategorically when Jack set his eyes upon Rose swinging above London on a rope in his first moments.

And, just to prove he was all about equal opportunities, he told his fellow army chum Algy, ‘you’ve got an excellent bottom too.’

Erection joke


Proving just how much Doctor Who had changed since the classic era, the Series One finale saw naughty Jack get completely naked and then reference his own wang – ‘Your viewing figures just went up!’ he cooed at robot versions of fashionistas Trinny and Susannah.

Sadly, for the audience, the BBC cut a scene feature Barrowman’s sumptuous bare buttocks. The cheek of it.

Top Shop fan


In the same story with Ninth Doctor and Rose, Captain Jack revealed to the aforementioned robots that his ‘design classic’ denim was purchased in Top Shop. Wait ’til he discovers H&M.

Face of Boe

In a surprising turn of events, handsome Jack regaled the Tenth Doctor and Martha with tales from his times as a poster boy – where he was known as the ‘Face of Boe.’

Earlier that series, the couple had watched the Face of Boe die on New Earth (after mysteriously telling the Time Lord, ‘You are not alone.’) Text book enigmatic.

Drinking a Martini in the face of death

After helping save the world with Doctor and Rose in The Doctor Dances, Captain Jack faced certain death within minutes on his ship.

Ever the gentleman, he sits back and initiates ’emergency protocol four one seven’ – a Martini.

(Thankfully, of course, his chums had other plans and came back for him.)

Dirty Boy


Despite facing an Dalek onslaught and the might of Davros in the Series Four finale Journey’s End, Jack still had time to coolly contemplate life with three Doctors (two David Tennants and one Catherine Tate).

Wonder what he was thinking…?

Dalek Death (sort of)

Often underestimated for his bravery (as displayed upwards in this list), Jack was party of the small army the Ninth Doctor assembled to battle the Daleks in 2005’s Parting of the Ways.

Sadly for Harkness, this was to be his last battle. When out of ammo and face to face with the deadly pepper pots and their cry of ‘EX-TER-MIN-ATE!’, he calmly retorted, ‘I kind of figured that.’

And then was blasted in the face by the mad little tanks.

Hugging the TARDIS


Brave. Brave and and just a little bit mad.

The former Time Agent’s first return to Doctor Who in 2007’s phenomenal episode Utopia (which also saw the return of The Master) was a doozy.

Upon hearing the sound of the TARDIS in Cardiff Bay (near his place of work, Torchwood), Harkness raced to meet the Doctor only to be met with a dematerializing TARDIS.

This is nothing to a man who can’t die, and jumped on and braved traveling throughout the time vortex unprotected. Classic Jack.

Historical Pub Quiz

Can you match the historical figure to the Doctor Who episode?

By Sarah Doran Radio Times

If there’s one thing Doctor Who fans know it’s that their beloved show is so much more than just another Sci-Fi series.

When it’s not taking us off to the furthest corners of space and time or making us feel emotions we never knew we could feel, Doctor Who is actually educating us too.

Yup, we’ve definitely picked up a fair bit of historical knowledge on our travels with The Doctor and his companions, as they crossed paths with some of history’s most famous names and faces.

But were you paying close enough attention to ace a little history test? Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin…

Series 9, 10 & Moffat

Just a short hint at the future of Doctor Who here: Mr Steven Moffat – showrunner since Matt Smith’s first full series, series 5 – will officially stay with the show until series 10, at least. 

It’s not surprising that the BBC wants Moffat to stay, seeing as his reign has seriously broadened the show’s American success and turned Doctor Who into one of the broadcaster’s biggest exports. Moffat also successfully steered the good ship Who through the big fiftieth anniversary year, including the overseeing of The Day Of The Doctor and The Night Of The Doctor, as well as finding time to make his cameo in The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot (which gifted us with an image of him which we endeavour to use in every news story about him ever).

The news of his contract extension came at an event in New York, where he simply said he had ‘just signed up for another year.’

Of course, there will be those who take this news negatively, but it’s impossible to deny Moffat’s role in securing the future of Doctor Who.

More Doctor Who news as it happens. Or, y’know, slightly after it happens.  (Den of Geek)

But W=will he end up being John Nathan Turner in the end, a burnt out shell hate by “the fans”?
I just worry that his “upping the gae” every year will lead to things that should not be done so he should leave before his ego goes there.
Moffat: “I’ll be honest, I thought when I took it over, and it was more or less said to me – I took over about half-way through the ten years [of nuWho] – I thought I was there to preside over the gentle, respectable and decent decline, because that’s what happens to shows that run for a long while.”
He might still get his wish…
Action! Peter Capaldi hit Barry Island beach on Monday with a patriotic parachute to shoot scenes for the ninth series of Doctor Who

n between takes the actor, who is back for his second series as the Time Lord, was spotted chatting to co-star Ingrid Oliver.

The 37-year-old comedian and actress is reprising her role as UNIT scientist and Time Lord superfan Osgood for a two-part episode, despite being murdered by Missy (Michelle Gomez) in the series eight finale.

Daredevil: While he didn't actually leap out of the sky, the parachute sequence looks to be part of an exciting new storyline for the 12th Doctor
Let Zygons be Zygons??


Ponder the possibilities, because the project got axed!

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