|Earlier in the year, we reported on the relative success of the 2007 Annual. However, at least one consumer was not best pleased with the BBC's initial yuletide Doctor Who book.
In a 12 March 2007 interview with SFX magazine, the subject of brand maintenance was discussed with Russell T. Davies. He spoke of some specific issues in keeping up the quality of licensed merchandise, and eventually came round to reveal he thought the record-breaking 2007 Annual had room for improvement.
Here's an extract:
"So yeah, [we try to keep the ''Doctor Who'' brand consistent] in the way that a Hollywood studio looks after Harry Potter. It’s that important to do, to keep the consistency. It’s like when you were a kid you used to buy those famous old Doctor Who annuals that were so mad, and disconcerting, and you wouldn’t sit there on Christmas Day going, ‘Hurray! What a marvellous annual!’ I mean, they were mad! You wanted pages full of Daleks and Cybermen and secrets of the TARDIS and things like that. And I don’t think the annual was good enough this year, to be honest - they had a reprinted comic strip in. This year they’re not going to get away with that I hope, we’ve been sending off memos. It was a lovely piece of work and it made the headlines cos it outsold The Beano; nonetheless - not good enough. The annual was good, but it could get better. So you give notes on things like that, although they don’t always listen to you."
The full text of the wide-ranging interview—which also includes a detailed rationale for keeping the show Earth bound for now—is available online.