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Book Review: Doctor Who: Impossible Worlds
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who Impossible Worlds title Harper Collins

Doctor Who: Impossible Worlds
Hardcover | Kindle
by Stephen Nicholas and Mike Tucker
Harper Design | Dey Street Books | HarperCollins Publishers
Release Date: October 27, 2015

Attics can be wonderful, beautiful things. Sometimes they are repositories of worthless junk, but more often they have such wonderful stories to tell. They are full of boxes. Some contain toys from childhood. Others hold certificates, pictures, and correspondence. Still others contain mementos and heirlooms of events both obscure and infamous. There are such stories to be learned, if one can only gain entry and do some research.

That is how it could be for Doctor Who. With 52 years now passed since the show began production, what stories can its artifacts and ephemera tell us? We know the exoteric truths of the show’s production from its primary artifacts — the episodes produced by and shown on the BBC. Surely, there must be more than that. What were the stories, the images, the ideas that never made it onto those tapes? What did time or budget make impossible? What was merely deemed to be poor creative choice?

These are the motivating themes of a new book, Doctor Who: Impossible Worlds by Stephen Nicholas and Mike Tucker. It proposes to take us into the Doctor Who production design department to show how the core ideas of the series transformed from imagination to television drama for over 50 years. In this, it succeeds more than it fails and provides the reader with some rich visual insight into the history of Doctor Who.

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Book Review: Doctor Who: The Time Lord Letters by Justin Richards
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who: The Time Lord Letters header

Doctor Who: The Time Lord Letters
Hardcover | Kindle
by Justin Richards
Harper Design | HarperCollins Publishers
Release date: September 29, 2015

Ahhh, what would it mean to know the mind of a Time Lord? It must be something to know what a Time Lord saw. There must be wit! There must be wisdom! There must be an ambivalence, a humor about the mundane moments. There must be perspective that comes from the understanding of time and history as a sometimes malleable thing. So, we are presented with a book called Doctor Who: The Time Lord Letters. What does it tell us?

In the end, it doesn’t tell us much. It tries to create a narrative of Doctor Who history that is approachable for younger television viewers. The actual history of the show is far more complex than that, due to reasons that have little to do with good storytelling. The full-color hardcover title does little to weave together all the historical threads of the Doctor’s lives. Instead, the book’s best appeal is to provide both older and younger viewers with an excellent photo collage of the entire history of Doctor Who. That, I think, is what will keep readers coming back to this book.

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BBC Announces The Discovery and Restoration Of 9 Classic ‘Doctor Who’ Episodes
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Patrick Troughton exiting the TARDIS from Classic Doctor Who somewhere between 1966 and 1969.

The BBC today announced that 9 episodes from Patrick Troughton-era of classic Doctor Who (1966-69) were found earlier this year at a Nigerian television station and will be available for immediate purchase via Apple iTunes.

The episodes come from two multi-part serials for which only one episode each was known to exist: “The Enemy Of The World” and “The Web Of Fear.” As a result of this discovery, “The Enemy Of The World” serial can now be watched whole in the UK for the first time since it was originally broadcast, and for the first time ever in the United States. Episode 3 of “The Web Of Fear” serial is still missing even after this discovery, but a reconstruction from stills and program audio is included to complete the story. All 11 episodes from the two serials exist on film and were digitally restored prior for this release.

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50 Years Ago This Week: First Ever ‘Doctor Who’ Scene Filmed
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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The first scene shot for the first Doctor Who episode "An Unearthly Child"

In considering the history of the BBC’s venerable series Doctor Who, the most important date that anyone remembers is November 23, 1963. That’s the day that the first episode, “An Unearthly Child,” was originally transmitted. Thus began the uninterrupted 26-year broadcast run that comprises a major part of the series history. That’s the birth date of the series, and the one that will be commemorated with a 50th Anniversary special on November 23, 2013.

As the Radio Times pointed out a few days ago, there are other meaningful early dates to consider. While it is hard to exactly pin down some key dates in the development history of the Doctor Who series, one undisputed date is September 19, 1963. That’s the day that filming for the first version of “An Unearthly Child” commenced. The first recorded scene showed the TARDIS police box landing on the Middle Paleolithic Earth of 100,000 BCE with an ominous human shadow in the foreground, making it at the very end of the script for the initial episode.

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The Doctor Who TARDISblend 55: The Power Of Three
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Doctor Who TARDISblend Banner Series 7a 2012

Subscribe to the Podcast: RSS | iTunes | Stitcher
Discuss us on Twitter: #TARDISblend

Doctor Who Series 7 continues in a story told from the perspective of the Ponds, the Earth has become plagued by the mysterious appearance of black cubes across the planet. The Doctor (Matt Smith) begins an investigation into the cubes, with the assistance of some old friends with UNIT, only to find… nothing!

The cubes offer no clues to their appearance, but the Doctor can’t shake the feeling that they represent a grave danger to humanity…

During TARDISblend 55, we discuss the penultimate Pond story in the Doctor Who universe entitled The Power Of Three, told completely from the perspective of Amy (Karen Gillan) and Rory (Arthur Darvill). We also take a look at the guest appearances in this episode, with Kate Stewart (Jemma Redgrave) fulfilling the role of the daughter of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart (played by Nicholas Courtney in the Classic Doctor Who series), and the surprising and fun cameos that showed up as well.

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Countdown To Doctor Who: Book Review: ‘Shada’
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Countdown to Doctor Who: Book Review: Shada

Countdown To Doctor Who: Book Review: ShadaDoctor Who: Shada
By Gareth Roberts
Original Script by Douglas Adams
Ace Publishing
Release Date: June 26, 2012
Cover Price: $12.99 (Kindle Edition)

In a rather captivating, though curious manner, you might find it astonishing that Gareth Roberts‘ adaptation of the Doctor Who adventure by Douglas Adams called Shada caused music to play in my head.

That sounds a little weird, of course. But when it comes to both Doctor Who and Douglas Adams, the strangeness should not only be expected by now, but mandatory par for the course.

Allow me to explain.

I have found, in my years of being an overly obsessive geek that the best adaptations of already established franchises inspire your mind to create the ambience of the universe you’re investing in. In all types of writing, a good author will not only be able to explain the scene to you, but totally immerse you in it: you can see the brightness (or gloominess) of the sky, you can almost feel the floors or walls of the setting, and you can smell the odors described, such as the scent of rain on a hot day… or petrichor, for example…

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The Doctor Who TARDISblend 49: Series 7 Predictions
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Doctor Who

The TARDISblend podcast is back, this time for a Doctor Who Series 7 Prediction Wishlist, featuring special guests Anthony Ha and Andrew Sorcini. We offer our sincere predictions as to where Steven Moffat will be taking Series 7 for Matt Smith‘s Doctor, and then also reveal our wishlists – things we’d love to see in Series 7, 8, and beyond.

Meanwhile, we also cover the most recent Doctor Who news, including the official BBC announcement of Jenna-Louise Coleman landing the role of the new companion for the second part of the upcoming season. We also discuss the new teaser trailer, that was a surprise release for fans; and the most recent news of not just the Daleks appearing in the first episode, but ALL the Daleks!

And to close out, we discuss our final predictions for the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who in 2013; we respond to your comments on the past episode, and as always, we make some Classic Doctor Who recommendations, and highlight what is coming up for both the future of this Whovian podcast!

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Comic Review: Doctor Who Classics, Series 4 #1
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Comic Review: Doctor Who Classics Series 4 #1Doctor Who Classics, Series 4 #1
Written by Alan McKenzie
Original Art by John Ridgway
Colors by Charlie Kirchoff
Covers by John Ridgway and Charlie Kirchoff
IDW Publishing
Release Date: February 01, 2012
Cover Price: $3.99

Talk about a blast from the past. Doctor Who Classics Series 4 #1 is a republication of the original Doctor Who comic book series as first released in Doctor Who Magazine. Younger fans of the original television series who have viewed the DVD releases may recall some special features dealing specifically with these comic strips.

Classics Series 4 undertakes the interesting era of the Colin Baker years. During his time as the sixth incarnation of the Doctor, the television series was under threat of cancellation, an ever-increasing strain on budget availability, and a rising dissatisfaction from many fans as their criticisms of the John Nathan-Turner showrunner years would reach their peak.

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DVD Review: Doctor Who – The Sun Makers
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Doctor WhoDoctor Who: The Sun Makers
DVD
Directed by Pennant Roberts
Written by Robert Holmes
Starring Tom Baker, Louise Jameson, John Leeson, Henry Woolf, Richard Leech, Michael Keating
BBC
Release Date: August 9, 2011

Tom Baker‘s era tends to be the most favored among Classic Doctor Who followers – and justifiably so: the man spent 7 years in the role, longer than any other Doctor, embracing the role that would help redefine the series. From his era, recently released on DVD is The Sun Makers (finally available for rent on Netflix, along with a couple others I will be reviewing as well), first broadcast in 1977 during Season 15; and Tom Baker’s fourth season in the role.

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DVD Review: Doctor Who – Frontios
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Doctor WhoDoctor Who: Frontios
DVD
Directed by Ron Jones
Written by Christopher H. Bidmead
Starring Peter Davison, Janet Fielding, Mark Strickson, Jeff Rawle, Peter Gilmore, John Gillett
BBC
Release Date: June 14, 2011

It was with much nostalgia that I found myself viewing this Classic Doctor Who adventure featuring Fifth Doctor Peter Davison. Frontios is from Davison’s final season as the Doctor, which was also my first experience to new Doctor Who episodes back in that day in age. Accompanied by Tegan Jovanka (Janet Fielding, a fellow Aussie!) and Vislor Turlough (Mark Strickson), I found myself flashing back to my old Doctor Who 1984 Annual.

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