Tuesday, January 1, 2013

The Blogtor Who Review of 2012

2012? Over already? Blimey. Here it is, the world(s) of Doctor Who in one big snatch from the lesser stories to the big~hitters. All delivered in typical Blogtorian style, let's do it!

JANUARY
Although a quiet month for most people, the world of Doctor Who rumbled on in real and meaningful ways. No more real or meaningful than the READERS' POLL! Check out what you lot thought of 2011 HERE and you can find Blogor's own thoughts HERE. Speaking of votes, the show did well at the NTAs, with Matt Smith and Karen Gillan winning awards - watch them in action HERE.

Matt also turned up on UK children's programme Blue Peter kicking off the Script to Screen competition (watch him HERE) whilst Karen popped up on The Graham Norton Show (watch HERE).

Fandom got INTRIGUED when actor Adrian Lester told Graham Norton on his radio show that he was "actively seeking" a role in Doctor Who (see HERE) but then fandom was ROCKED to its very core when Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn revealed he was turned down for a gig on Who (read HERE). Perhaps not as ROCKED when Fern Britton shocked the nation with her hateful rant against "dreary" Doctor Who on Room 101 (watch HERE).

ROCKING the Whoniverse, however,  were some references on US television shows; step up The Big Bang Theory and Leverage. Also ROCKING was our buddy Murray "MuGo" Gold with his piano version of I Am The Doctor (watch HERE)

Merchandise-wise, we got treated to the brilliant DVD release of the William Hartnell story, The Sensorites, featuring the fascinating documentary, Looking For Peter - Blogtor's review HERE. Big Finish also kicked off the year with a box set of unfilmed Tom Baker tales in the Lost Stories box set featuring The Foe From The Future and The Valley Of Death; review HERE.

In semi-Who news, Alex Kingston made an appearance in the short-lived return of Upstairs Downstairs (pics HERE and HERE) whilst John Barrowman made a guest turn in the final series of Hustle (starring the aformentioned Adrian Lester). And Steven Moffat's other show, Sherlock, started its second series. And then ended.

FEBRUARY
The production team bounded into action filming the final five episodes for The Ponds and gave us THIS promo pic. Matt Smith popped up on Daybreak, watch his interview HERE, whilst Alex Kingston graced The Graham Norton Show (watch HERE) and John Barrowman was interviewed on The One Show (watch HERE).

Johnny B also made a guest appearance in the sketch show, Watson and Oliver, singing the brilliant tune, I'm John Barrowman! - watch it HERE. Elsewhere on telly, former Doctor Who and former companion, David Tennant and Sophie Aldred, got together for the children's series Tree Fu Tom (pics HERE and interviews HERE). Other former Who~ers on telly include Catherine Tate starring The Office and Georgia Moffett in White Van Man.

In the merchandise arena, we were treated to the Revisitations 3 DVD boxset featuring Tomb of the Cybermen, The Three Doctors and The Robots of Death (Blogtor's review HERE) and the complete finale series of The Sarah Jane Adventures (review HERE).

Being February, fandom GASPED as Matt Smith proposed to his girlfriend in the Doctor Who Experience (read the full story) and Blogtor Who celebrated Valentine's Day with THIS special video featuring kisses in Doctor Who. Aw, smooches.

MARCH
The BIG news in March was, undoubtedly, the announcement of the actress who would play the new companion, Jenna-Louise Coleman. Equally big was the Official Doctor Who Convention in Cardiff; an amazing event featuring all the big names in the world of Who. You can read Blogtor's review HERE and listen to a special press panel with Steven Moffat, Caro Skinner, Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill HERE. Karen also filmed a special segment for Blue Peter promoting the Script To Screen Competition (watch HERE)


The world of merchandise threw up The Face of Evil (review HERE) and the Pertwee classic, The Dæmons (review HERE) on DVD whilst the "unfinished" Douglas Adams "classic" Shada got finished by Gareth Roberts in a novel. Lalla Ward lended her tones to the audio book, review HERE. The former Mrs Tom Baker popped up on Graham Norton's radio show to promote it too! (Listen HERE.)

Other Who alumni hitting the media that month were Sophie Aldred on BBC Breakfast (watch HERE) whilst Mark Gatiss guested on Being Human (pics HERE) and David Tennant promoted his film The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists! on The One Show (watch HERE).

References weren't short on the ground with Eastenders and Watson & Oliver proving some mentions HERE. Finally, Tom Baker gave a wonderful tribute to Who legend Philip Madoc (pictured right in Daleks – Invasion Earth: 2150 A.D.) who sadly passed away; listen to it HERE.

APRIL
Bit of a quiet month this one. Location filming in New York City caused quite the stir and you can see Karen Gillan film her final scenes HERE. Still in NYC and we went from the very latest to the very first with a special event, An Evening with Waris Hussein - read a review HERE.

The man a lot of Who~fans hated in the Eighties, Michael Grade, presented a radio show which took in the return of Doctor Who in 2005. Chatting with him were Russell T Davies, Jane Tranter, Lorraine Heggessey, Mal Young and Steven Moffat - listen HERE.

Colin Baker, now a reality show favourite, made a fan's life easier by helping him sell off his collection of Who goodies, watch Get Your House In Order HERE. Lovely Murray Gold showed up on YouTube again showing off his talents, this time a guitar-laden Western-themed version of the Doctor Who theme tune, watch HERE.

As a special treat, Tom Baker classic Nightmare Of Eden was released on DVD, review HERE. My legs, my arms, my everything!

MAY
Fandom SIGHED a SIGH of relief as some ACTUAL new Doctor Who was aired. Good As Gold was a magnificent minisode broadcast on Blue Peter and written by schoolchildren in the Script To Screen competition - watch it HERE.

Fandom then SWOONED as Matt Smith and Benedict Cumberbatch shared a... stage to award Steven Moffat at the BATFAs. You can watch that HERE.

Speaking of swooning, BBC Four aired Tales Of Television Centre, a documentary which included Peter Davison, Janet Fielding, Katy Manning, Louise Jameson, director Graeme Harper and some very rare outtakes with Peter Davison and also Tom Baker with John Cleese - (available HERE).

Television also served up a DALEK IMPERSONATOR on ITV1 "show", Britain's Got Talent, you can see how the chap got on HERE and HERE. Elsewhere in international telly news, Criminal Minds heavily referenced Who whilst France had their very own enviable Doctor Who Night! (Where's our Doctor Who night BBC?!?!?!?)

JUNE
The new Doctor Who studios in Cardiff opened, and the gang introduced as all to Roath Lock HERE. Nearby, Matt Smith RAN, sort of, with the Olympic Torch. Fandom was DISAPPOINTED when Mazza was dressed in a tracksuit and NOT as The Doctor. (Not really.) The Smithster also turned up at The 11th Hour Convention - check out Blogtor's review of the event HERE (which also featured Who alumni such as Mark Sheppard, Neve McIntosh and Frances Barber, amongst many others).

Fans got EXCITED when some behind~the~scenes footage from the first Dalek movie was unearthed (details HERE) whilst, in other Dalek news, Death to the Daleks popped up on DVD (review HERE). Some fans got APOPLECTIC as David Tennant and Billie Piper were reunited, sort of, on telly in mini-series, True Love (pics HERE and HERE).

Sadly, actress Caroline John passed away on this month; best known to Who~fans as Liz Shaw during Jon Pertwee's first series. You can read the BBC's obituary HERE.

JULY
In brighter news, the Doctor Who Experience relocated from London to its natural home, Cardiff! Bigger and better than its previous English home, the DWE is a shining example of just how well the show is doing. Check out the Blogtor Who review HERE.

In other fan-cillary news (DO YOU SEE WHAT I DID THERE??) Comic Con France hosted a panel with Murray Gold, Caro Skinner, Toby Haynes and Chris Chibnall. You can see footage of a press meet the gang did HERE (featuring a couple of questions from Blogtor). Also worth a look is THIS video from the Comic Con featuring lots of fans talking about Doctor Who (Blogtor also pops a few times on this too!). Across the pond saw the San Diego Comic Con have a strong Who presence, watch some videos HERE.

Matt Smith showed off his non-Time Lord side in the Olympic drama Bert & Dickie (pics HERE) whilst former Who~er Christopher Eccleston proved his acting chops were in fine form in Blackout (pics HERE).

More sad news for Who~fans came with the news that another former companion Mary Tamm had passed away. Tamm played the original Romana and prefect foil to Tom Baker's gregarious excess. You can read the BBC obituary HERE.

AUGUST
Series 7 was just around the corner so there were a few premieres of Asylum of the Daleks. First up was the BFI (Blogtor's review HERE), then New York (some pics HERE) and then the Edinburgh TV Festival (where SteeMo talked about David Tennant, the Doctor Who movie and a female Doctor).

The other big news that month was that Mark Gatiss was writing a "genesis of Dr. Who" drama (though speculation had been rife for many, many months). It would be titled An Adventure In Space & Time, and here's who Blogtor thinks should be in it.

Christopher Eccleston was part of an interesting interview at the National Theatre (watch HERE), whilst essential merch this month included The Greatest Show in the Galaxy DVD (review HERE) the Second Doctor novel, The Wheel of Ice (review HERE).

SEPTEMBER
Or Who~ember, as no one called it (despite Blogtor's repeated attempts). Series 7 landed on its very first day with Asylum of the Daleks (round~up of all its news, pics and clips HERE) and popularity was higher than ever with the episode setting a new international simulcast record. Check out all the details on the rest of the series in the links here - Dinosaurs On A Spaceship, A Town Called Mercy, The Power of Three and The Angels Take Manhattan. And, if that wasn't enough, you can download all the audio commentaries for the episodes HERE.

To promote the "series", Matt Smith chatted with Alan Carr on Alan Carr: Chatty Man (watch HERE, but best not with the kids) whilst Karen Gillan went Stateside to speak with Conan O'Brien (watch HERE).

Staying in the US, kids show Sesame Street managed to do a song about Doctor Who. No, really. Watch it HERE. Back in Blighty, long-running "quiz" show Mastermind included a Doctor Who round, how did you fare?

Merchandise-wise,  the magnificent Remote Control Sonic Screwdriver hit the streets with trouser~tightening delight - check out Blogtor's thoughts on the lovely bit of tech HERE. The Colin Baker "classic" Vengeance On Varos got another home release and, for the first time ever, Blogtor let someone else do a DVD review, check it HERE.

OCTOBER
After all the EXCITEMENT of Who~ember, October (or Doc~tober, as definitely nobody was calling it) was fairly uneventful. Having said that Matt Smith and Steven Moffat made an appearance at the Doctor Who Experience where the former opened up the new Series 7 exhibits. Later on that month, Matt turned up the London MCM Expo where I got  chance to have another chat with him (the fourth time I'd met him this year - for those counting). You can hear my interview with Matt HERE.

The DVD range celebrated the Jon Pertwee era with two releases from The Third Doctor, check out the reviews for The Claws of Axos: Special Edition and The Ambassadors of Death.

Completing the month: Doctor Who got referenced yet again on The Big Bang Theory (watch HERE) and Russell T Davies' new show with Phil Ford started - check out the Wizards Vs Aliens site HERE. 

NOVEMBER
Another quiet month but we were treated to some new Who in the form of the Children In Need minisode, The Great Detective (watch it HERE). Doctor Who also got a mention from  Ben Stephenson (BBC "Controller, Drama Commissioning") on Points of View, where we got some actual confirmation of a 50th Anniversary Special.

Speaking of the 50th, some ex-Time Lords were quizzed on the anniversary. David Tennant was as ambiguous as ever HERE whilst Christopher Eccleston was slightly more playful on the notion of a return HERE. And former Doctor Who Colin Baker returned to the world of reality TV by entering the "jungle" in I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here!

DECEMBER
Christmas! Christmas!! CHRIST~MAS!!! The final month wall all about Christmas! And, more importantly, The Snowmen - catch up on all things Crimbolicious Spesh related HERE. The BBC, in their lead~up to the festivities included the TARDIS in a 3D lightshow. Oh, and we got a NEW TARDIS interior too! AND new titles!

Showing their lurve for Doctor Who, our chums in North America got Matt Smith on the front of  TV Guide. Mazza also turned up on ITV1's This Morning and chatted about a "danger through wi-fi" ep in Series 7 (thankfully Phillip Schofield refrained from producing a list of actors to play the 12th Doctor he got from the internet) and The Graham Norton Show (watch HERE). Not to be outdone, new gal Jenna-Louise Coleman made an appearance on BBC's Breakfast (watch HERE).

Elsewhere in telly~land, BBC Four quiz show Only Connect featured some Who questions whilst dancing judge Bruno Tonioli revealed he is "desperate" to be in Doctor Who. Not quite telly-land, but David Tennant and Billie Piper were reunited on stage for the first time at a convention at the Starfury event, Midnight. Blogtor was in attendance and got to host some great panels on The Sarah Jane Adventures and Wizards Vs Aliens, amongst others. It was also pretty tops getting to have a chat with Davey T.

In "rumour" "news": Peter Jackson said he "may well" work with Steven Moffat again; SteeMo said that "John Simm is The Master"; Toby Jones wants a Dream Lord return; will the Series 7 finale be set in Scotland?; and Jenna-Louise Coleman said she's trying to get her boyfriend in the show.

The 50th Anniversary gathers momentum with the BFI announcing they will be celebrating throughout 2013 with screenings, the Royal  Mail announced a stamp range and Blogtor started the weekly countdown of his favourite 50 Doctor Who stories, OF ALL TIME!! Read entries No. 50, No. 49 and No. 48.
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And there it is, 2012 delivered through the eyes of Blogtor! On a personal level, I got to meet and chat with quite a few people involved in the show (both behind and in front of the camera), so that's been pretty amazing. And what a great year it's been for Who~fans, despite only six episodes airing. 2013 looks like there's gonna be even more for us to get our collective teeth into. Huzzah!

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