Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Doctor Who Magazine #601

The new issue of Doctor Who Magazine has arrived, with a handful of things by me in it.

pp. 14-20 Script to Screen: The Goblin Crew

In a deep-dive feature on the creation of the goblins and their king for Christmas episode The Church on Ruby Road, I spoke to executive producer Joel Collins, production designer Phil Sims, Neill Gorton from Millennium FX and Will Cohen from Milk VFX.

pp. 36-37 Can You Fix It?

An interview with director's assistant Abdoul Ceesay.

p. 82 Insufficient Data: Sunday Supplemental

A new infographic by me and Roger Langridge exploring the issue of Sundays in Doctor Who - and Doctor Who on Sundays.

Monday, February 26, 2024

Doctor Who Literature #105: Timelash

I'm a guest on the latest edition of the Doctor Who Literature Podcast, this time discussing the novelisation Timelash by Glen McCoy, first published in December 1985 and based on his TV story broadcast earlier that same year.

We recorded this at the Gallifrey convention in LA last weekend and you can hear me being constantly distracted by the extraordinary spectacle of people in ever more inventive costumes milling about us. At one point, even the unflappable Jason is left speechless by the Sisterhood of Karn assembling beside us for a photo.

As well as Timelash, we also discuss the talk I gave on the history of television prior to Doctor Who, my book David Whitaker in an Exciting Adventure with Television and what I did on Whotopia.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Radio Free Skaro #948

I had an amazing time at the Gallifrey One convention in Los Angeles this weekend. What a buzz! But also I didn't sleep at all on the journey home so have returned something of a brain-mushed wreck.

My talk on Television Before the TARDIS went well, and - in what's becoming a tradition - I was then interrogated by Steven from podcast Radio Free Skaro. Steven also spoke to Shaun Lyon (programme director of the convention) and Peter Harness (who is launching Constellation today), so I feel in very august company.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Novel Experiences

Out now, two new documentaries tell the story of the original Doctor Who novels published 1991-2005. A load of editors and authors (including me) are interviewed, most of us while at the Novel Experiences convention run by WHOOVERS in Derby on 13 May last year.

I loved those books which, more than anything else, made me a writer today. I was one of the last first-time writers to be commissioned for one, right at the end of the BBC line. What a thrill to be included in the line-up, to count such brilliant people as peers.

Standing: John Peel, Jeremy Hoad, Colin Brake, Nick Walters, Daniel Blythe, Peter Anghelides, Steve Cole, Simon Guerrier, Paul Magrs, Martin Day, Mark Morris, Andrew Hunt, Simon Messingham, Paul Ebbs. Seated: Mags L Halliday, Robert Dick, Steve Lyons, Nigel Robinson

If this is your sort of thing, alas my book covering some of this history, Bernice Summerfield - The Inside Story, is now long out of print but David J Howe's The Who Adventures: The Art and History of Virgin Publishing’s Doctor Who Fiction is still available - and gorgeous.

Thursday, February 08, 2024

Cinema Limbo: The Last Wave

I'm on the latest episode of the Cinema Limbo podcast all about neglected movies. This time, host Jeremy Philips and I analyse the 1977 Australian film The Last Wave directed by Peter Weir and starring Richard Chamberlain. As I said at the start, two things amazed me about this.

First, I thought I knew Peter Weir's work pretty well but have never heard of this odd, early film.

Secondly, watching it really helped bring together lots of my thinking about the context in which it was made and efforts to combat the 'cultural cringe' in Australia, which I detail in my book on David Whitaker.

You can also listen to the previous episodes I've been on:

Friday, February 02, 2024

Doctor Who Magazine #600

The 600th issue of Doctor Who Magazine is out now! Last night I was in London to celebrate this audacious landmark at a swanky knees-up. Really good to meet up with lot of old friends - and meet in person for the first time people I've been working with for yonks.

The new issue features some bits by me:

pp. 32-27 Tower of Strength

I spoke to production designer Phil Sims about UNIT Tower (aka The Penguin), as featured in The Giggle last year and due to be seen again later this year.

pp. 46-47 The Lonely Nights of the Long-Distance Runner

An interview with production runner Thani Subkhi.

p. 82 Sufficient Data - Take Cover!

An infographic of DWM cover stars over the past 600 issues. Sadly, this will be the last Sufficient Data illustrated by brilliant Ben Morris, who I've worked with since our days together on Doctor Who Adventures a thousand years ago. We've collaborated all sorts of fun stuff, including our book Whographica with Steve O'Brien, and Ben even laid out my family tree as a gift for my parents. Thanks Ben, for everything.