Author Archive: Shaun

Who Doctors the Doctor?

I have been sick this week. Nothing major, (started as a cough, but now in my third day of missing work I of course am beginning to wonder if I’ve contracted Captain Tripps) but it’s laid me low. I cant help but think of the times the Doctor felt a little down and out. Most of those came as the result of a wonky regeneration, (I wonder if the Time Lords allow for sick days? “Sorry Lord Chancellor, I simply cant come in today, I’ve just regenerated and gone insane and tried to kill my companion.” Surely that falls under FMLA or something?)

Regenerations can be simple (Hartnell to Troughton) or nightmarish (Davidson to Colin Baker). As established in Peter Davidson’s debut Castrovalva, the TARDIS was equipped with a Zero Room, which is supposed to aid in keeping the Time Lord sane during the process, (but of course, plot demands caused the ejection of the Zero Room in that story). If only he’d had it for his next regeneration in “The Twin Delima” he might not have throttled Peri. The TARDIS is also equipped with a sick bay, (“The Invasion Of Time”) though we’ve never seen the Doctor use it. The ninth regeneration into David Tennant kept him in a coma for the better part of a day (cured by a cup of tea). Where as most recently, the regeneration seemed to do little to Matt Smith other than cause some interesting food cravings.

Cravings, memory loss, schizophrenia, mood swings. These almost sound more like the earthly symptoms of PMS than cellular regeneration.

At any rate, as I lie here in bed sipping my tea and hoping this damned cough will leave me, I cant help but hope for a regeneration. Maybe I’ll come back as a Ginger…

June 2011 North American Doctor Who DVDs

From Radio Free Skaro:

June 14 sees the next two North American releases of Classic Doctor Who stories, and this time around we get the Peter Davison story Frontios along with Sylvester McCoy’s first outing in Time and the Rani.
Frontios tells the story of a human colony in the far future, and as yet no release date is known for other parts of the world.

Time and the Rani introduces the world to Sylvester McCoy as the Seventh Doctor as he takes on the dastardly Rani in a DVD released last year in the UK.

Proper package art isn’t yet available for the titles but of course we’ll update this post once we have it.

SRP will be $24.98 each, and in the mean time check out more details at

Ode To A Myrka

Poor misunderstood nightmare from the abyss!
Why must they sneer and laugh when they should tremble in fear?
Do they not see the power rippling beneath your glistening rubber flanks
or the strength of those lumbering limbs?
Watertight bulkhead doors are no match for you!
Can they not feel the static crackling in the air generated by your very presence
as they wait for the shock of your electric hug?
Transfixed by your unflinching stare or fleeing in terror,
firing ineffectual weapons in retreat, the outcome is all but assured.
You are the battering ram, the tip of the spear,
the advance chaos clearing the way for Sea Devil shock troops.
A Silurian’s best friend,
Monster, myth, mesmerizing mediocrity.
My mighty, maligned Myrka.

Rock Band 3 Challenge: Action Shots

Rock Band Challenge

Well, David Tennant has joined our band. No, not really, but as part of our Episode Four challenge, we wanted to see how many Doctors we could create on Rock Band 3. Here’s my new and improved David Tennant in some action shots!
Don’t forget, we want to see YOUR creations! Just create a character, then “Doctor” them up, take a photo and send it too us and we’ll post it!

I’m sure mine will go through a few more revisions as I complete more challenges, thus unlocking more outfit options, (this still isn’t quite the right suit for him) so I’ll definately keep you appraised of my progress.

My gal Mel has even said since I’m doing Doctors, she might try her hand at companions!

Rock on…

Ambassadors Of Death Delayed

According to a tweet from @classicdw on Twitter earlier today, the DVD release of the Third Doctor story “The Ambassadors of Death” has been delayed due to ongoing restoration issues.

In the tweet 2|Entertain says “Due to ongoing restoration issues, Ambassadors of Death will now not be released in 2011. #doctorwho”.

The company had hoped to get the story out later this year and it was due to be released along with the 1977 story The Sun Makers as part of it’s “The Solar System” box set.

Only one episode currently exists in it’s original color format, with the others kept as 16mm black and white film.

An off air recording of “Ambassadors” from WNED Channel 17 in Buffalo was used to restore episodes five and six to color for it’s 2002 VHS release.

2|Entertain has said it is working to restore the story through colorization techniques.

Classic Doctor Who Releases For 2011

The Doctor Who News Page reported recently that the folks over at 2entertain have confirmed the classic Doctor Who stories currently being worked on for release this year.

“Planet Of The Spiders” – Jon Pertwee
The third Doctor’s swan song story as he faces off against the Giant Spiders.
Extras include: Commentary, 90 minute compilation edition, Jon Pertwee on Wogan, John Kane remembers, The Final Curtain – Documentary, Directing Doctor Who: Barry Letts, Now and Then: Locations

“Spearhead From Space” / “Terror Of The Autons” – Jon Petwee
A double release of the third Doctor’s introduciton story re-issue, along with the debut of The Master.
Spearhead Extras include: Regenerations: Documentary, UNIT Recruitment film, Down to Earth: Documentary, New Commentary
Autons Extras include: Extra Footage, Commentary, Plastic Fantastic: Documentary, The Doctor’s Moriarty, Life on Earth: Documentary

“Frontios” – Peter Davison
The fifth Doctor’s TARDIS is apparently destroyed druing a meteorite bombardment on Frontios.
Extras include: Commentary, Isolated Score, Driven to Distraction

Earthstory Box Set – “The Awakening” / “The Gunfighters” – Peter Davison / William Hartnell
The fifth Doctor watches a Civil War re-enactment turns real from the affecting influence of an alien war machine, and the 1st Doctor lands in Tombstone.
Awakening Extras include: Commentary, Outakes, On the Cutting Room Floor, Kamelion deleted scene, Barry Newbury – Designer: Documentary, Location Footage, Now and Then
Gunfighters extras include: Commentary, End of the Line: Documentary, Tomorrow’s Times, The First Doctor

“Paradise Towers” – Sylvester McCoy
The seventh Doctor battles the inhabitants of a run-down apartment tower.
Extras include: Commentary, Girls Girls Girls: 1980’s, Horror of the High-Rise: Documentary
Rejected Score, Jigsaw

Revisitations 3 – “Tomb of the Cybermen” / “The Three Doctors” / “Robots Of Death” – Patrick Troughton / Jon Pertwee / Tom Baker
Three stories released near the start of the DVD range now get revisited with additional restoration work and special features. Tomb of the Cybermen – In this once thought to be lost forever second Doctor story, an Earth archaeological expedition attempts to uncover the lost tombs of the Cybermen. It’s the earliest surviving complete story with the Second Doctor, and has now been through the VidFire process designed to restore the look of the print to its original condition. In the 10th anniversary episode The Three Doctors must unify against renegade time lord Omega. The fourth Doctor must find a murderer on board a giant sandminer, who may not be human in Robots Of Death.
Cybermen Extras include: New Commentary, Tomb and the magic of VidFIRE: Documentary
Sky Ray promo, Lost Giants Documentary, Curse of the Cybermen: Documentary, Cybermen: Documentary
The Three Doctors extras include: Making of Documentary, When Doctor Who was Uncool: Documentary
Robots of Death extras include: Sandmine Murders: Documentary, Robophobia Documentary
Girls Girls Girls 1970’s

The Solar System Box – “Ambassadors of Death” / “The Sun Makers” – Jon Pertwee / Tom Baker
The third Doctor has been restored to full color as UNIT investigates Mars Probe 7, while the Fourth Doctor and Leela join forces with rebels on Pluto, where there are now six suns.
Ambassadors extras include: Battle for Mars Probe 7: Documentary, Tomorrow’s Times, The Third Doctor.
Sun Makers extras include: TX Trail, Running from the Tax Man: Documentary, Doctor’s Composer: Dudley Simpson

Day of the Daleks (Special Edition) – Jon Pertwee
No details available at this time.

Commissioning Editor Dan Hall revealed the sixth Doctor story Vengeance on Varos with Colin Baker was considered for re-visiting, but was dropped after review. He indicated he would be willing to reconsider this decision should there be increased demand favoring the re-release.

Time to get those emails and Twitters going!

The Dangers Of Knitting Fat?

Special thanks to co-worker and friend Sarah Hollis for bringing this tidbit to my attention…

As I have expressed previously, I have a very long, very heavy knit Doctor Who scarf. I love it, and I deeply admire the craftsmanship that went into it. Not everyone it seems, falls on the same side of that admiration.

A Doctor Who fan with a screen name of Mazzmatazz has a webstie featuring photography and knitting. One of her creations was a knit Adipose, featured in the Fourth Season opener, “Partners In Crime”. The response was overwhelmingly positive, so Mazz posted her patern on line for free, so that others could knit thier own fat baby.

Enter the BBC, and in a strange case of corperate dictatorship, they sent a Cease-and-Desist letter, requiring her to quote, “remove from your site any designs connected with DR WHO.” Now I completely understand wanting to get paid for your work. I have no issue with BBC cracking down on people who are manufacturing illegal copies of the episode DVDs and selling them, but a knit pattern? A FREE knit pattern?

At what point do we turn the corner from fandom to copyright infrengment? Surely an aspiring comic book artist, who draws a portrait of Batman which someone likes enough to offer him money for isnt infrenging on Warner Bros. Dark Knight? Surely someone who constructs a replica of the U.S.S. Enterprise bridge and charges $5 to take pictures in the Captain’s chair isnt creating a financial hardship for Paramount? And surely a fan who posted a FREE PATTERN to knit a Doctor Who monster (not even one of the main ones, a mobile ball of fat) is a threat to the profits of the BBC?

Stealing fat? Sounds like something from “Fight Club”.

I am against illegally making money off someone elses work. But I also understand that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. To BBC Worldwide, I say can’t we find some middle ground here for a fan who loves your product?

Weekend Wonderings…

Up late on Saturday night and thinking deep thoughts…

Matt Smith maybe the first Doctor who didn’t need an “adjustment period”. I warmed to him immediately.

Of course, Matt Smith was the first Doctor who I knew in advance was coming, the rest of the regenerations had taken me by surprise.

I love Amy and Rory. Their dynamic is just so darned… cute.

Of course, if this were an American show, now that the couple had gotten married, the producers would be trying to shoe horn in a baby to raise ratings.

Although it would be kind of interesting to see Matt Smith’s Doctor react to a baby…

Steven Moffat: we do NOT want a baby.

I cant wait to see more of the inside of the Tardis. The wardrobe, the library, the pool.

With all of the classic series to mine, I wonder what villains have yet to rear their ugly heads on the new series? If the Sontarans are still around, does that mean the Rutons are as well? How about the Rani? Surely she survived the Time War. And if she did, she and the Doctor are the last two Time Lords in the universe….

I think there’s a bar joke in there somewhere.

Not that the original monsters haven’t been good. On the contrary, I have found the monsters created for the new series to be awesome, from the Ood, to the Slitheen. Even those aquatic fishmen with the aqua breathers were great. And most of these (I hate to say it) have been about a gazillion times more interesting than the “let’s put a piece of latex over this part of your face” Star Trek villains.

Glenn got me some authentic Jelly Babies for Christmas. I have now run out, and can feel the shakes starting.

The Sonic “Swiss Army” Screwdriver may be the most overused plot device since dumping the warp core.

Slightly Psychic Paper may be the best. So much of the classic series was spent trying to convince the guards they really should listen to you despite the fact that you’re dressed like a Rock Band character. Scripts were cut in half by this convention.

I wonder if we are doing a bit of a disservice to those WHO have come before, by calling it “Classic Series” and “New Series”? Isn’t that kinda like New Coke? I used to get upset with people for calling Star Trek “Classic Trek” or “The Original Series”. Uh-uh. All those that came after have monikers. Next Gen, DS9, Voyager, Enterprise. Star Trek is just Star Trek, leave it at that.

I love that the show has worked so hard to remember it’s roots. This is NOT a reboot.

I cant wait for Doctor Who: The Movie (or as I’ll always think of it, “Doctor Who: 1996”) to come out on DVD. They were lucky to get Paul McGann, and foolish to squander him. I watch it and think oh, what might have been…

But then I think about what might not have been. No new series for us if the “Americanized” Doctor had taken off. And surely he and Grace would be married and have five kids wandering the halls of the Tardis by now, probably still looking for the pool.

They should check in the library.

Two Doctors landing in Middle Earth?

It was just confirmed that Sir Ian McKellan and will be returning to the role of Gandalf in director Peter Jackson’s two part upcoming Hobbit film. He joins returning alumni of Andy Serkis (Gollum), Cate Blanchett (Galadriel), Christopher Lee (Saruman) and Elija Wood (Frodo).

Seventh Doctor Sylvester McCoy has also been cast as the wizard Radagast the Brown. While the character mainly appears in The Lord of the Rings (he’s the one who, unwittingly, lures Gandalf into Saruman’s trap in Fellowship of the Ring) it appears Peter Jackson may be taking some liberties with the book’s material to expand on several themes.

Linked to the production by muliple sources is the Tenth Doctor, David Tennant, who may be up for the role of Thranduil the Elvenking, who Bilbo (Martin Freeman) will meet on his journey to destroy Smaug, the dragon.

Two Doctors in one film? Pinch me. Filming starts next month, with The Hobbit: Part 1 hitting theaters on December 19th, 2012. Part 2 comes out in December 2013.

The Dark Tower: The Drawing of The Cast – Rumors

This may seem a tad out of place on a primarily Doctor Who site, but sci-fi fans are a diverse bunch, and we frequently have overlapping interests.

This is all rumor and hearsay at this point, but The New York Post recently reported that there are a few front runners in the casting news for the trilogy of films and tv series that will make up Ron Howard’s addaption of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower.

‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ beauty Naomie Harris (Tia Dalma) is being considered for the female lead of Susannah, while Javier Bardem ‘No Country For Old Men” and Viggo Mortensen “Lord Of The Rings” are the lead contenders for Roland Deschain.

Okay, Viggo would be awesome. But Javier? Not really my idea of Roland! What do you think?

Cardboard Boxes and Long Scarves

As most non-Who fans could attest, “The Doctor wears that really long scarf, right?” And of course they would be right, referencing Tom Baker’s stint on the show when Doctor Who hit big in America.

While STAR WARS was a gateway drug for my science fiction fix, Star Trek and Doctor Who became staples of the habbit. I watched as a kid and got hooked early. I can fondly remember my mother calling upstais for my brother and I, asking what we were doing. “Playing Doctor!” we’d reply. Her nervous verification had a whole different connotation to it until she realized what was going on.

And thank heavens for cardboard boxes, the bulwark of our playtime. We’d stack up a few boxes and stick plungers out of them to be Daleks, we carefully sculpted a couple of cardboard boxes and covered them with duct tape to resemble K9 (complete with an extendable stalk with a lego radar dish in the middle of his eye scanner) and mom brought home a giant printer box that we cut windows in and wrote “Police Box” over the door. And inevitably, we’d tie every scarf in the house together to create something close to the Doctor’s apparel.

I have wanted one of these scarves since I was nine. (Of course I also wanted a lightsaber and a light cycle as a kid) but I felt the scarf was at least attainable. It took almost thirty years.

My roommates girl friend knits. She loves to make things for people. Music to my ears. We scouted out patterns on line, found the “official” knitting pattern from the woman who made the original for the show. (Of course in show, the scarf was made for him specially by Nostradamus’s wife.) We picked out yarn, and away she went.

For the better part of a year.

I feel vaguely bad about asking for her do make something that turned into a project of this undertaking. Until she gave it to me. I literally have no words to describe what a wonderful gift this truly is. Thank you, Miss Kara, for an amazing job.

And I wear it. I told her in advance, this was no convention floor showpiece, this was a Doctor Who scarf for Pete’s sake!

And oddly, I have only gotten two Doctor Who related comments on the scarf, where people recognized it from the show while I was out and about. But I have gotten a slew of compliments from people who don’t associate it with the show. They just thought a really long scarf was cool. And fashionable.

Doctor Who, fashionable? Wow. Those are two words I never actually thought I’d hear together in the same sentence. This is not to say the scarf is without challenges. Wearing it during the winter is fine, because it’s exceedingly warm. (of course its warm, it’s 40 lbs of wool!) I can see now why they filmed in all those Scottish highlands and rock quarries. Baker had to be sweltering running around in that! And there are dangers lurking for the long scarves. Car doors. Cats eyeballing the dangling fringe. And of course, escalators are a definitive no-no.

But I’m bringing it back.

So everyone, go into your closets and tie those scarfs together. The fashionistas tell me they’ll be all the rage next year…