May 16, 2005
The latest controversy, if it can be called that, is that the upcoming DVD releases will be given a “12” Certificate in Britain, that is it’s not to be shown to children under 12. According to Outpost Gallifrey the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) did this based on the episodes The Unquiet Dead and Dalek—the latter being particularly slated for its scenes where the Doctor taunts the Dalek. This apparently sets a bad example where “violence and cruelty [is] a way of dealing with problems”.
As producer Russell T Davies points out, it does seem a bit unfair since the stories on here don’t have the swearing and violence that many things that get this classification. Even the Times have an editorial criticizing the BBFC for this ruling.
But…weren’t we here almost a decade ago? Back when the last Doctor Who revival was happening (you remember it, the one that lasted a month or so in 1996 and yet took up the next nine years of books), the BBFC offered the video of the TV movie a 12 certificate only if it actually cut—like the televised version in Britain—scenes of violence during the shoot-out when Chang-Lee’s friends are killed and during the operating room scene when the Seventh Doctor dies. It was a month or two after the Dunblane massacre and people were very spooked about gun violence. The threat was that if cuts were not made it would receive a 14 certificate, which would have wreaked havoc with the BBC’s plans to air the TV Movie on the May Bank Holiday in a pre-watershed timeslot by releasing a version on video with stronger violence content than the version televised. So the videos—which were going to be released a month or so before (indeed it was meant to be a way for BBC Worldwide to make some money back on their investment in the TV movie)—had to be reduplicated which meant they were now only available days before the TV movie aired. (The local East London supermarket I used to go to when I lived there for two years had two lonely unbought copies the entire time I was there).
So here we are again. Compared to what happened in 1996, I think this is hardly a tragedy or a scandal at all. I frankly think those DVDs should wear those 12 certificates like a badge of honour.
Posted by Graeme on Monday, May 16 at 8:06 pm
May 10, 2005
Posted by John on Tuesday, May 10 at 4:58 pm
May 07, 2005
Aside from giving us a wonderful new series, the BBC are really going for value-added content in a big way. Just look at the official site to get an idea of what I mean.
In the run up to the new series, much bitching abounded regarding the content the BBC’s own Doctor Who page. Let’s face it, Who Spy was about as thrilling as pictures of cameras and cups of tea. Probably because it was pictures of cameras and cups of tea. Since the first UK broadcast the site has had a weekly front-page redesign, lots of behind-the-scenes material added, tantalising glimpses of running themes, even a Dalek game!
Best of all are the spoof sites (some of which also contain spoilers!) From the start, Clive’s website has really existed and is updated nearly every week. Geocomtex from Dalek have their own site, as does UNIT. Most intriguing of all, and frustratingly devoid of content right now, is this site. Has this been registered by the BBC, or an enthusiastic fan? Time will tell…
Posted by John on Saturday, May 7 at 5:23 am
May 05, 2005
In honour of the might, history and lore of the Dalek Empire I’ve surrendered the Blog Banner to them. Welcome back!
I was a bit worried about how the New Series would handle the return of the Daleks and (re-)introduce The Evil Pepper Pots to a world where Battlestar Galacticas and Episode III’s run wild. You can quote Jubilee, argue Genesis, and slag Rememberance all you want, in the end DALEK stands on it’s own two feet (if it had any), and fulfills the apprehensive “introduction mandate”. From here the series can go any way it wants with the Daleks, and I look forward to being along for the ride. Nice work Rob, RTD, BBC et al.
Long Live The Daleks!
Posted by Rod on Thursday, May 5 at 11:22 pm
Birthplace of Myth Makers co-editor Richard Salter and now site of the very first new series oriented exhibition.
Coincidence? We think so. Nonetheless, there’s something cool for fans to do next time they want to visit Brighton pier besides reenacting the opening of The Leisure Hive, episode one.
Posted by Graeme on Thursday, May 5 at 9:03 am
May 02, 2005
Recently I had an opportunity to watch the new series of Battlestar Galactica, which I had heard many good things about. Just the mini-series mind you, I haven’t seen any of the regular series.
Despte all of the plaudits it has received, I can’t say I was overly impressed. It was all right, but it didn’t blow me away the way it has with a number of my peers. I found it to be cold, bleak, relatively emotionless and somewhat depressing - which is perhaps understandable given the subject matter, but not really what I look for in a television program.
Worst of all, I think its a shame that the series hasn’t just been updated (that I agree with), it has also been up-graded in terms of the appropriate age group. Its no longer a series for kids, in my view (which makes me really puzzled as to why they brought back the awful character of Boxey, the one element of the 70’s original that didn’t even deserve to exist as an idea). I saw the original Battlestar Galactica for my 6th birthday party in 1978 and loved it. If I had a 6 year old son, I wouldn’t let them watch the new Galactica, at least until they got a few years older and more mature to handle the more mature subject matter.
What’s the connection to Doctor Who? Simply that I’m glad that Doctor Who didn’t go down the same route with its comeback. It came back updated, but the age group has remained the same. Its suitable for viewers of all ages, which is how the series always was, and how I think it always should be. The spectacular success of the new series in the UK and to a lesser extent in Canada, suggests they made the right move.
Posted by John on Monday, May 2 at 8:29 am
April 27, 2005
My, Doctor Who is getting mentioned everwhere these days. The American political blog Kos talks about the political satire in Aliens of London and World War Three, calling these two stories a “spectacular allegory.”
There are plenty of spoilers after the sixth paragraph. If you’ve seen the stories, have a read to find out what the American left wing thinks of the show.
They also mention the “anti-xenophobic subtext of Carnival of Monsters,” and they call The Sunmakers “kafkaesque.”
Posted by John on Wednesday, April 27 at 4:00 pm
April 22, 2005
Readers of Livejournal know about that community’s obsession with creating geeky, funny, soft-focus icons for their fandoms. Now us Doctor Who fans can be part of the love. Let’s hope we’re ready. omg teh wangst!!1
and my favourite…
Posted by John on Friday, April 22 at 5:37 pm
April 20, 2005
The Doctor Who Blog has moved to a new hosting service for your comfort and convenience.
Posted by John on Wednesday, April 20 at 5:01 pm
April 17, 2005
It’s amazing to think that by 2006 our favourite television hero will have hit double figures in terms of the number actors to have played him on television. In case you haven’t seen it on the www.dwin.org main page, David Tennant was announced as the 10th Doctor yesterday by the BBC.
I suppose that reaching 10 actors to play the role happened quicker than anyone thought it was going to happen when the series was announced to be coming back in September 2003 - but looking at it another way, if the series had never gone off the air to begin with we’d probably be on our 12th, 13th or even 14th Doctor by now, given that most actors only stay in the role for 3 years. It’s still an incredible achievement for a television series - just imagine asking the original production team back in 1963 if they thought this would be happening 42 years into the future. William Hartnell was the most optimistic of the original cast, believing the show could be so unbelievably successful that it might run for as many as 5 years. And look at it now!
William, Patrick, Jon, Tom, Peter, Colin, Sylvester, Paul, Christopher and now David (with a very appropriate last name for Doctor number ten). Ten different actors, ten different first names, ten different incarnations, but one Doctor Who.
Posted by John on Sunday, April 17 at 8:00 am
The Doctor Who Blog's mission is to provide witty and insightful commentary on the world of Doctor Who in all its various forms. And to make several bad puns and references to jokes Tom Baker once made.
- Happy 51st Anniversary
- Eternal Rains Will Come
- Mystifying Missy
- Not the Battle of Epping Forest
- Who’s Flatline is it Anyway?
- Don’t Keep Mum on this episode of Doctor Who
- The Web of Destruction
- Taking Care of Business
- The Time Robber
- Don’t Just Listen
- On Target
- Into the Capaldi Era
- Breathe Again
- Look over there! It’s a new season approaching!
- Who knows what lurks in the mind of the 12th Doctor