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Updated: 18 min 41 sec ago

The TARDIS crash lands on London’s iconic Parliament Square ahead of the Doctor Who series launch

Fri, 08/22/2014 - 5:27am

In an explosive return to the UK from the world tour, the Doctor - Peter Capaldi - and his companion Clara Oswald, played by Jenna Coleman, made a surprise appearance this morning at the site of a specially constructed crash-landed TARDIS on London’s Parliament Square.

Ahead of the eighth series returning to BBC One this weekend, the theme of the crashed time machine was in keeping with the feature-length opening episode, entitled Deep Breath, which sees the Doctor arrive in Victorian London to find a dinosaur rampant in the Thames and a spate of deadly spontaneous combustions.

In front of the TARDIS and through the debris of dinosaur bones, the show’s transmission date can be seen emblazoned in the grass – Saturday 23rd August. Deep Breath airs at 7.50 PM.

 

Categories: Doctor Who

BBC iPlayer launches exclusive Doctor Who Extra series

Wed, 08/20/2014 - 4:11am

The BBC has today announced Doctor Who Extra - a brand new series, exclusively on BBC iPlayer. Doctor Who Extra is much more than a ‘making of’ show as we follow Peter Capaldi every step of the way throughout the creation of his first season as the Doctor. Over the course of 12 programmes we trace the highs and lows of Doctor Who’s most ambitious run of episodes yet, getting the inside take on series 8 from the people who made it.

The Doctor Who Extra team had unparalleled access to stars including Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and Samuel Anderson (series regular Danny Pink) plus guests Frank Skinner, Keeley Hawes, Michelle Gomez, Ben Miller, Foxes and many more. Writers, such as Lead Writer and Executive Producer Steven Moffat, and directors also contribute as they spill the beans on the on and off-screen drama.

Casual viewers will enjoy the fun, fast pace and lighter side of Doctor Who Extra but there’s plenty for fans, too, as we take a quick dip into the archive for every edition, reflecting on how Doctor Who’s history is echoed in this current series.

Packed with emotion, great stories and a real sense of ‘access all areas’, Doctor Who Extra is essential viewing for everyone who’s ever watched Doctor Who and wondered what it’s a like to be a part of the team that brings this global phenomena to our screens.

Doctor Who Extra is produced by BBC Cymru Wales and executive produced by Steven Moffat, Brian Minchin and Jo Pearce. Each 10 minute Doctor Who Extra episode will be available after that week’s Doctor Who episode on BBC One.

*Audiences will also be able to access Doctor Who Extra via the BBC’s Red Button.

Categories: Doctor Who

New Series: All the Episode Titles and More

Mon, 08/18/2014 - 4:51am

We can officially confirm all the episode titles and writers for the new series of Doctor Who which begins on Saturday at 7.50pm on BBC One…

Episode 1: Deep Breath.
Written by Steven Moffat
Directed by Ben Wheatley

Episode 2: Into The Dalek
Written by Phil Ford and Steven Moffat
Directed by Ben Wheatley
Introducing Samuel Anderson as Danny Pink.

Episode 3: Robot Of Sherwood
Written by Mark Gatiss
Directed by Paul Murphy

Episode 4: Listen
Written by Steven Moffat
Directed by Douglas Mackinnon

Episode 5: Time Heist
Written by Stephen Thompson and Steven Moffat
Directed by Douglas Mackinnon

Episode 6: The Caretaker
Written by Gareth Roberts and Steven Moffat
Directed by Paul Murphy

Episode 7: Kill The Moon
Written by Peter Harness
Directed by Paul Wilmshurst

Episode 8: Mummy On The Orient Express
Written by Jamie Mathieson
Directed by Paul Wilmshurst

Episode 9: Flatline
Written by Jamie Mathieson
Directed by Douglas Mackinnon

Episode 10: In The Forest Of The Night
Written by Frank Cottrell Boyce
Directed by Sheree Folkson

Episode 11/12 Dark Water/Death In Heaven
Written by Steven Moffat
Directed by Rachel Talalay

Categories: Doctor Who

Famous ‘First’ Lines... Updated with Answers!

Fri, 08/15/2014 - 8:59am

A new Doctor’s first adventure is always unique as the world finds out what kind of Time Lord will now be saving the universe. There have been many memorable moments where the new costume is revealed or a confused companion shares that awkward first conversation with the regenerated figure before them…

So, how much can you remember about new Doctors’ debuts? Below you’ll find five quotes from new Doctors’ first full adventures… All you have to do is identify the Doctor and the episode! (We’ve now added the answers below, so no peeking before you’ve had a bash!)

“Regeneration in my case is a swift but volcanic experience.”

“All those planets, and creatures and horizons! I haven't seen them yet!”

“Oh, I can't have changed that much, surely?”

“Time to put on a show!”

“I think the nose is a definite improvement…”

 

Answers: The first line was spoken by the Sixth Doctor during The Twin Dilemma and the second line was delivered by the Tenth Doctor at the close of The Christmas Invasion. The Third Doctor asked the question, “Oh, I can't have changed that much, surely?” when speaking to the Brigadier in the opening episode of Spearhead from Space and the Eleventh Doctor announced it was “Time to put on a show!” in The Eleventh Hour. And finally, after seeing his new face in Robot, the Fourth Doctor mused, “I think the nose is a definite improvement…”

Categories: Doctor Who

New Doctor, New Wallpapers...

Thu, 08/14/2014 - 10:00am

The feature-length special, Deep Breath, hits our TV screens at 7.50pm on Saturday, 23 August. That means the new Doctor materialises on BBC One in just nine days!

But if you’d like him on your computer screens right now, no problem! Simply download a version of one of the images below and set it as your wallpaper.

Just click on the required format of the version you prefer and when it opens up, right click to save the image or set it as your wallpaper.

 

 

    4x3 / 16x9

 

 

 

    4x3 / 16x9

 

 

 

 

Categories: Doctor Who

Jenna Coleman Interview

Wed, 08/13/2014 - 4:32am

Jenna Coleman first appeared in Doctor Who in September, 2012 and as companion Clara Oswald she’s stood up to Cybermen, sunk in a submarine and been caught in the epic Time War. But now she might just be facing her biggest challenge yet as she comes to terms with having a new Doctor… In this interview, Jenna Coleman talks about what’s in store for Clara, shooting the new series and, of course, Peter Capaldi…

Question: How is Clara feeling about having a new Doctor?
Jenna Coleman: For Clara it unbalances her and throws everything up in the air. She has gone from feeling safe - in moments of danger the Doctor would catch her - and thinking she had it all sussed, then suddenly this new guy has come along who she can’t quite access in the same way. He’s removed, he’s not as patient, and he’s much more alien and enigmatic. It’s really hard for her. Her best friend is a changed person, and it is a very difficult for her to accept that and move forward.

Q: What is Clara’s relationship like with the Doctor?
JC: It’s interesting because it’s a really changed dynamic. It’s very funny, there’s a lot of bickering. There’s no one that can wind her up as much as this Doctor can, because he’s just a loose cannon. He has this mad curiosity. It puts Clara out of her comfort zone and totally out of control, so we see the control freak in her really ramp up. What I think is really good about it is it’s an unlikely friendship. Even if she wanted to leave she can’t, because she’s bonded to him. He absolutely infuriates her. He annoys her. No one else can wind her up quite like it – but she just loves him. The friendship is strange and charming.

Q: Would you say the tone of the show has changed this year?
JC: It feels different. The pace is different, and the tone. It’s definitely darker, but again I think it’s because the Doctor is much more removed and not as accessible to humans. The show feels complex, and the Doctor is complicated. He’s this heroic figure but he can’t quite accept he’s a hero. It’s also the Doctor getting to know himself again as well as the audience, and Clara, getting to know him. There’s definitely this element of beginning again as there always is with a regeneration. He’s much more of a tough cookie, and there’s fierceness to it now I think. Peter is just so dynamic as well, he’s a firecracker. That is really interesting for Clara, because when they go on these adventures – yes it’s fun and it is full of adventure – but actually it is dangerous as well.  The risk-taking is heightened.

Q: What is in store for Clara this series? Do we learn anything new about her?
JC: You see a lot more of her home life. We see how she lives her life, and how she lives a double life. Spending time at home, being a teacher and living a normal life, and then very separately sneaking off and having these mad, wonderful, magical adventures with the Doctor. Actually, it is quite exhausting for her. She’s trying to keep a lid on it, and she arrives back at school soaking wet with seaweed on her shoulder for example, and she has to explain that. It’s a theme throughout the series, lying and why we lie, lying to protect someone you love. It’s this web of lies that she gets herself tangled in.

Q: How have you found working with Peter?
JC: It’s been a joy. He’s so funny and so generous. That’s one of the things from day one on the shoot. He was looking after me on his first day, which I just think is testament to the type of man he is. He is the epitome of grace. He is that kind of man that takes care of all of those around him. Despite all of that, he’s just so skilled and so brave and bold in the choices that he makes, and really clever and dynamic. What I love about him is that he’s so prepped and immersed in the job, but then at a moment’s notice he’s not afraid to abandon any plan and try something else. He’s a really fearless actor that’s very generous to those around him. We just have such a laugh as well. We’ve laughed the whole way through the series together.

Q: Did you find yourself showing Peter the ropes?
JC: There’s silly basic things you can do like “there’s the canteen”. Silly things like that. What I really wanted to do was be as open as possible to change from the start, and also just make him feel supported and that he could try anything. I’d be up for trying anything. It was about being totally open with each other and trying to get that relationship as soon as possible so that we could get the best out of it. Also to allow him to really be able to explore, because that’s the kind of actor he is. He’s very explorative on set as well, so just being as responsive as I could to that so he could explore and find his Doctor. It’s been amazing to watch actually, especially watching episode one, and to see where he’s got to now having just finished the series. It’s a massive growth.

Q: What can you tell us about Clara’s relationship with Danny?
JC: She meets a man called Danny Pink – a teacher - who’s charming and lovely. He’s that perfect boyfriend really and is very supportive, but he doesn’t know anything about this double life she lives. She tries to hide it from him whilst at the same time falling in love. She becomes very torn between the two. It’s almost as if she’s having an affair, without having an affair, but the lying becomes more and more. Basically she’s trying to manage the two, and have these two men in her life. It becomes quite a hurtful thing and quite a hard thing for her because she’s totally torn between the two, and trying to have both at once without being able to do it successfully.

Q: What’s it been like working with Sam Anderson?
JC: It’s been great. He’s a dream. I think he’s going to be really popular in the show. He’s very laid back, very cool and collected, and he plays the trumpet in-between takes as well on set! He’s lovely. I do feel sorry for his character though, as he’s got this girlfriend who is completely stressed every time she appears after coming back from being with the Doctor. 

Jenna Coleman returns as Clara in Deep Breath on 23 August… See a trailer for the adventure now!

Categories: Doctor Who

Peter Capaldi Interview

Wed, 08/13/2014 - 4:16am

Peter Capaldi is the new Doctor when Doctor Who returns on Saturday, 23 August with a feature-length episode called Deep Breath. In this interview, Peter discusses the iconic role, working with Jenna Coleman and filming his incredible first series…

Question: Can you describe your emotions on the first day when you stepped on set as the Doctor?
Peter Capaldi:
I was frightened and excited. My first proper day was stepping out of the TARDIS into a brand new world, which was exactly what was happening to me. Of course being inside the TARDIS you’re just inside a big box really. It’s not bigger on the inside, it’s just a prop and you’re in there with Jenna and a prop man who you’ve never met before. It was all a bit cosy. But it is frightening because you have to take on the challenge of this role, but at the same time it’s exhilarating because you are getting to step out the TARDIS as Doctor Who, and that’s an iconic role and a great position to be in.

Q: How are you feeling ahead of the new series starting?
PC: Apprehensive, excited, and keen.

Q: What have fans got to look forward to this series?
PC: They can look forward to some scary episodes, and some funny ones, and a Doctor who is difficult to keep up with, and who is more alien than perhaps we’ve seen for a while.

 Q: Since the show returned in 2005 have you always hoped the role would come your way?
PC: I was always interested but I never thought they’d come to me. So I was always interested because I liked the show very much, and I loved Chris (Eccleston), David (Tennant) and Matt (Smith). All of them I think have been fabulous. But I was always interested in being in it. I was always hoping someone would call me and say ‘What do you think of coming and being in an episode? – but I never thought they would think of me as Doctor Who.

Q: Have you received any advice from any of the other Doctors?
PC: Yes Matt and David. We are often in touch, they have been very good. David did take me for a coffee before it had been announced, and he just pointed out to me that I would become more visible and that my life would change in some way.

Q: You are a big Doctor Who fan. Is that an added pressure or an advantage?
PC: Both. It does add to the pressure because you’re hugely aware of how well the role has been played by previous incumbents, but at the same time you have a sort of relationship with it that that doesn’t have to be acted. It’s a knowledge and a closeness to it that takes you a long way down the road. You almost instinctively know what it is. You can recognise what it is and what it should be, because it’s in your DNA.

Q: Have you tried to take any mementos from on set yet?
PC: No I haven’t, I don’t need any mementos – I’m Doctor Who!

Q: What has been the best thing so far about being the Doctor?
PC: It’s working with all of these gifted people, because the crew, the designers and the cast are all so good at what they do. To be working with people who are so great at their jobs is a wonderful thing, and it’s a highly imaginative place to be in the studio when this is all going on. It’s fabulous from the point of view that you’re doing things you would never have done in other television shows. There isn’t another television show like it, where the central character can be blown up, or materialised underneath the sea or be in outer space. So to turn up every time you start a new episode and be submerged in a totally new world is certainly one of the best things about it. To be able to have the privilege of looking after this character for a while is the best thing about it for me. It’s that you’ve been given this very precious thing, and it’s your responsibility to try and keep him aflame until the next person comes along. You’re looking after the character and it looks after you too.

Q: Has there been a sequence you’ve particularly enjoyed filming?
PC: I’ve just been filming a sequence in which I have to be suspended on wires, 20 feet in the air for a whole day, and people kept worrying about me and saying ‘Are you OK? Are you alright?’ But it was fantastic! It was like being nine years old. To be carted up into the air on wires to pretend to fly, I was Doctor Who and Superman. It was absolutely brilliant. You know you’re safe and everyone is there looking after you. Where else is a man of my age going to be attached to wires and flung around a room? I think being on the wires is great fun.

Q: How do you feel about being the joint oldest Doctor?
PC: I think you learn to pace yourself and you recognise the dangers. Everybody counselled me about how physical the role is, but that’s great! It’s like exercise, you don’t have to go to the gym. You just come and play Doctor Who and run up and down corridors being chased by monsters, and run away from explosions. It keeps you fit, but obviously when you’ve been around the block a little bit like I have, you can actually say ‘I’m not running over that thing over there, that looks too dangerous.’ You can pace yourself more, and that’s what I’ve done. So touch wood we’re nearly there, and I’m surrounded by a great team who look after me. I think too much is made of my age, who cares? Doctor Who is over 2000 years old…

Q: What sort of response have you had from Doctor Who fans so far?
PC: My relationship with fans, either when I’ve met them or when they’ve written to me, that’s all been wonderful and kind and positive. It’s a delightful thing when people are pleased to meet Doctor Who, because Doctor Who is far more interesting than I am. So I get his smiles. The welcome look on people’s faces is because they’re meeting Doctor Who, not me. The fans have been wonderful, those that I’ve met. I’m not a creature of the internet, so I’m not out there finding out what people are saying, but I hope we will meet a lot more people. Especially with the world tour I’m going to meet lots of people. But genuinely the fans I have met have been very positive and a great support to me. That’s lovely. I know what Doctor Who fans are like because I am a Doctor Who fan myself. They’re good people.

Q: Are you looking forward to the audience reaction?
PC: It depends what it is. That’s the truth. It depends if they like me or not. The thing I do know because I’m a fan of Doctor Who is that if there are a lot of people who don’t like me, there will also be some people who really like me, and that’s quite a nice feeling. That’s the nature of the show. People will take sides.

Q: How has it been having Jenna on set to share the experience with?
PC: She’s great. Jenna has been absolutely brilliant.  I think she’s wonderful in the show, and she’s my favourite companion. She’s been so welcoming to me and so warm. I couldn’t have wished for anyone better to welcome me to the show. She’s just been delightful to work with, so I hope we can carry on doing that.

See Peter Capaldi in the latest trailers and teasers!

 


Categories: Doctor Who

Deep Breath: More Information Emerges...

Fri, 08/08/2014 - 6:29am

Before any new episode of Doctor Who we release a short synopsis which gives an idea of what will be happening in the adventure…

For Deep Breath, the official synopsis reads, ‘When the Doctor arrives in Victorian London he finds a dinosaur rampant in the Thames and a spate of deadly spontaneous combustions. Who is the new Doctor and will Clara’s friendship survive as they embark on a terrifying mission into the heart of an alien conspiracy? The Doctor has changed. It’s time you knew him.’

Of course, you’ll be able to watch the whole thing when Doctor Who returns to BBC One on Saturday, 23 August, or you can visit a gallery of images for the episode now! 

Categories: Doctor Who

The World Tour Begins in the Home of Doctor Who

Thu, 08/07/2014 - 9:22am

The Doctor Who World Tour began in Cardiff, the home of Doctor Who, earlier today (7 August, 2014).

The day started with a photo shoot at Cardiff Castle with Peter Capaldi looking relaxed in a casual blue suit and Jenna Coleman stunning in a  full-length red dress. The dramatic backdrop of the Norman castle was given a Doctor Who twist as the TARDIS had materialised on top of the ancient building, leading many of the photographers to joke that they hadn’t known the Doctor would be using his time machine for the world tour!

After leaving the castle the team made the short trip to St. David’s Hall where thousands of people had lined the way to the venue. Doctor Who’s lead writer and executive producer, Steven Moffat and Samuel Anderson who plays Danny Pink in the new series, joined Peter and Jenna and all four of them signed autographs and chatted to fans as they made their way to the premiere. It was great to see so many people wishing the team well and there was a huge sense of excitement about the new Doctor and Deep Breath – the series’ opening episode that’s on BBC One on 23 August.

The team finally made it to St. David’s Hall and after the world premiere of Deep Breath, Jason Mohammad hosted a Question and Answer session before the team left the Welsh capital, with Peter Capaldi saying, “World Tour is well and truly underway. Farewell Cardiff… Next stop London. Hope to see you on tour… or somewhere soon in time & space.”

Thanks again to everyone who joined the team in Cardiff and helped make the day so special!

 

Categories: Doctor Who

The World Tour Begins in Cardiff Tomorrow

Wed, 08/06/2014 - 3:15am

The Doctor Who World Tour begins tomorrow (Thursday, 7 August) with a memorable launch event in Cardiff!

Peter Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor and Jenna Coleman, Clara, will be meeting the public as they walk up the red carpet outside Cardiff Central Library, from 11am, en route to St. David’s Hall where the opening episode of the new series will receive its premiere. But spectators beware… Daleks and Cybermen will also be invading the red carpet!

Jason Mohammad will be hosting a Q&A with Peter, Jenna and lead writer and Executive Producer, Steven Moffat, right after the screening and then the team say farewell (for now!) to Cardiff as the World Tour moves onto the rest of the UK and beyond with a journey that takes in everywhere from the South Bank to Brazil!

If you’re a fan but unable to get to Cardiff for the launch you can follow the fun by tuning into BBC Wales’ Jason Mohammad on the day from 10am. He’ll be bringing you all the red carpet action including chats with the cast and crew.

If you are coming along to see the red carpet event, why not show your support why wearing a mask of the new Doctor? Download one now and simply follow the instructions! Or if you’d prefer your mask to be on the monstrous side, you can go as the very latest version of the Cybermen

 

Categories: Doctor Who

Jason Mohammad to Cover Start of Doctor Who World Tour

Tue, 08/05/2014 - 8:44am

We’re delighted to confirm that BBC Wales’ Jason Mohammad will be hosting the Q&A session with Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman and Doctor Who’s lead writer and Executive Producer, Steven Moffat, following the screening of Deep Breath at St. David's Hall on Thursday. And don’t forget, we want your questions for him to put to the stars!

Jason Mohammad - whom fans will remember from cameo appearances in several stories including The Christmas Invasion - will be presenting his BBC Radio Wales show live from the foyer of St David's Hall on the day from 10am. He'll be right in the heart of the action, talking to the new Doctor, Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, his on-screen companion Clara. Jason will be meeting the fans and chatting to Steven Moffat, Executive Producer Brian Minchin and Danny Hargreaves, the show’s SFX supervisor.

Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, together with Daleks and Cybermen, will meeting the public as they walk up the red carpet outside Cardiff Central Library, from 11am, en route to the sell-out screening at St. David’s Hall. If you can’t be there, make sure you’re following the fun on @bbcdoctorwho and by listening to Jason’s radio show from 10am!

Categories: Doctor Who

Be Part of Thursday’s Launch with Questions for Peter and Jenna!

Tue, 08/05/2014 - 4:00am

Update! The deadline for submitting questions has now passed… Thanks to everyone who sent in suggestions!

Peter Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor and Jenna Coleman, his on-screen companion Clara, will be in Cardiff’s St. David’s Hall on Thursday to help launch the new series in style! They will be meeting the public as they walk up the red carpet from 11am, ahead of the world premiere of Deep Breath.

One of the highlights of the day will be a Question and Answer session, featuring Peter and Jenna, that will take place in St. David’s Hall after the premiere of the series’ opening episode. But don’t worry if you don’t have tickets for the screening! We’ll be filming the event and bringing you coverage of the entire Cardiff launch. And we also want your questions to put to Peter and Jenna!

If you have something that you’d love us to ask either Peter Capaldi or Jenna Coleman on your behalf, just let us know by either tweeting us @bbcdoctorwho or emailing us at thedoctor@bbc.co.uk

We’ll select two of the very best questions and put them to Peter and Jenna on Thursday at the Q&A. You’ll then hear their answers in a special video that you’ll be able to watch on this site.

So, start thinking of what you’d like to ask the two stars of Doctor Who… We’d love creative questions that don’t demand episode spoilers…

The event in Wales on Thursday kicks off the Doctor Who World Tour and Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman will be meeting the public as they walk up the red carpet outside Cardiff Central Library, from 11am… But don’t forget to watch out for the Cybermen and Daleks who will be joining them there!

Send your questions to thedoctor@bbc.co.uk and please use the subject header, ‘Peter and Jenna Questions’. We’ll also need to know your name and if under 18, your age. We’re accepting suggestions until noon on Wednesday so don’t delay… and good luck!

Categories: Doctor Who

New Photos from the New Series

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 5:01pm

On Saturday, 23 August, the new series begins with a feature-length episode called Deep Breath. We’ve had glimpses of the adventure in teasers and trailers but here are new photos that give us a further hint at what’s ahead…

The image above is, of course, the Doctor himself: Peter Capaldi! In this shot he’s wearing the Eleventh Doctor’s clothes so at this point he presumably hasn’t got his hands on his smart new attire…

The image below is another shot of the Doctor, this time looking slightly more austere…

It’s Madame Vastra! (Below) And the self-proclaimed ‘lizard woman from the dawn of time’ isn’t the only familiar face returning in Deep Breath. Vastra (played by Neve McIntosh) will be joined by her fellow members of the Paternoster Gang - Jenny Flint (Catrin Stewart) and the Sontaran, Strax (Dan Starkey).

Partners in crime? It’s the Doctor, deep in discussion with Clara…

And finally, here’s another shot of the Time Lord and his companion – both back on BBC One on 23 August! Don’t forget, you can watch trailers and teasers for the new series now!

 

Categories: Doctor Who

Doctor Who Stars to Launch World Tour in Cardiff

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 7:26am

Doctor Who fans arriving in Cardiff for the much-anticipated world premiere screening of the first episode from the new series, will get an opportunity to see the new Doctor on the red carpet, ahead of the event, August 7.

Peter Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor and Jenna Coleman, his on-screen companion Clara, will be meeting the public as they walk up the red carpet outside Cardiff Central Library, from 11am, en route to the sell-out screening at St. David’s Hall. Joining them in the Hayes will be Cybermen and Daleks.

Brian Minchin, Executive Producer of Doctor Who said, “After seven months of filming the moment has finally arrived when we get to introduce Peter Capaldi to the world. And where better to start but Cardiff, the home of Doctor Who!”

BBC Wales Director Rhodri Talfan Davies says: “Doctor Who is getting even bigger and even better - and it's a real thrill that the show's fans here in Wales will be the very first to see the new Doctor at this very special premiere screening. Doctor Who has been made in Wales for almost ten years - and we're so proud of its worldwide success.”

 

Categories: Doctor Who

Interview with Nicholas Briggs

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 2:33am

UPDATE: The Doctor Who: Cybermen Monster File is now only available from BBC Worldwide.

Nicholas Briggs has been the ‘Voice of the Cybermen’ since their return in 2006 and so who better to read Cybermen: Status Update, the new adventure that you’ll find in Doctor Who – The Cybermen Monster File Ebook?

Aside from the Cybermen he’s also voiced an array of aliens including the Daleks, Skaldak the Ice Warrior, Zygons and the Judoon. 

We caught up with Nicholas and asked for his unique take on the Cybermen, their new story, his favourite Cyber moments and who would have won the Time War had the Time Lords been fighting the Cybermen…

 

Question: The Doctor has faced literally hundreds of villains and monsters over the decades… What makes the Cybermen so special?

Nicholas Briggs: I think what makes them so scary is that they are essentially ‘us’ but with all the humanity removed. The walk, they talk, but they have blank faces and no emotions. That means they are devoid of all the things that make us human. They have no conscience, no pity and no love. And they want us to be like them. Terrifying.

Q: The Cybermen are emotionless creatures… How difficult does that make them to voice?

NB: It actually makes it really difficult, because if we were to be strictly ‘logical’ about how the voice should sound, it would be utterly monotonous and boring to listen to. All the things that grab our attention in a human voice are to do with emotions. The Daleks are very emotional, which is what makes their voices so scary, because they’re so cross and afraid all the time. The Cybermen… well, they don’t give anything away in their voices at all. So when we devised the new Cyber voices in Age of Steel, we went for ‘tactless’, which gave them an unpleasant edge.

Q: In terms of the audio version of the story, could you describe Cybermen: Status Update for us?

NB: It’s a really clever little tale from the point of view of a piece of social media software from the future on another planet. The idea is that instead of just posting on Facebook or tweeting on Twitter or whatever, you actually connect BOB to your brain and it updates your statuses with your thoughts and feelings. So, when the unfortunate lead character gets involved in a Cyber invasion of their planet, you get a real first-hand, terrifying account, as told through their thoughts and emotions. And imagine how weird that is when the person connected to BOB gets Cyber-converted!

Q: What’s been your favourite scene featuring the Cybermen since their return in 2006?

NB: There have been so many. I think their face-off with the Daleks in Doomsday was pretty good.

Q: Reaching back a little further, which of the early (pre-Rise of the Cybermen) stories is your favourite?

NB: I have a controversial fondness for Revenge of the Cybermen, but I’m rather fond of The Tomb of the Cybermen and The Invasion.

Q: And do you have a favourite line of Cyber dialogue?

NB:  You belong to us. That’s a pretty horrifying thing to hear.

Q: What was your favourite version of the Cybermen and why? And you’re not allowed to pick the current version!

NB: My favourite version to look at is the version from The Invasion. That design is so streamlined and simple — if you ignore the laces on the boots! But the best voice, although it’s the most difficult to do, was in The Moonbase and The Tomb of the Cybermen. It was produced using an artificial larynx, the kind of thing that people who’s lost their vocal chords use. It produces a vibrating, buzzing sound that can be articulated by the movement of your mouth. Very difficult to do.

Q: If the Time War had been fought between Cybermen and Time Lords, who’d have won?

NB: Well, no one really won the Time War did they? Forgive me for being a bit serious here, but I think the point that’s being made with the whole Time War thing is that no one really wins a war. Even the people who win suffer appallingly. It’s best to avoid wars. So, I think it would have been a horrible stalemate that would probably raged for eternity. Not nice.

Q: Which is your favourite of the many iconic photos featuring Cybermen?

NB: The one from The Invasion, when they’re walking down the steps from St Paul’s Cathedral in London.

Q: If you could give the Cybermen just one emotion, what would it be?

NB: I’d give them a conscience if I wanted their ceaseless thirst for conquest to stop!

Many thanks to Nicholas Briggs!


Categories: Doctor Who

Interview with Doctor Who Writer, Joseph Lidster

Tue, 07/15/2014 - 5:48am

UPDATE: The Doctor Who: Cybermen Monster File is now only available from BBC Worldwide.

Doctor Who – The Cybermen Monster File Ebook is available to download now and contains a brilliant, brand new adventure called Cybermen: Status Update, written by Joseph Lidster (Torchwood, The Sarah Jane Adventures, Wizards vs Aliens). 

We caught up with Joseph and asked him about the new adventure, his favourite Cyber moments and any advice he might have for aspiring writers…

Question: Could you sum up the new adventure, Cybermen: Status Update, in 140 characters or less?

Joseph Lidster: Status Update is the tale of a normal teenage boy living a normal teenage life until the day the Cybermen invade. And it features pork pies.

Q: Talk us through where Cybermen: Status Update came from… What inspired the story and the ideas for Jacob and BOB?

JL: I've found in the past that telling short stories in the first person gives you more of a chance to tell something a bit different. There have been so many brilliant Cybermen stories over the years so it can be quite difficult to come up with something new for them to do - and even harder to do this in a short story. By telling it from the point of view of a teenage boy it allowed me to explore what it would be like if an invasion actually happened. It's about what he goes through, his family, the girl he fancies and so on. I then decided to give it a little extra by having it told through social media. We're all using social media more and more so it felt a bit new and relevant. It also meant that, as the BOB device records your thoughts directly, I could keep telling the story from the main character's point of view - even when terrible things are happening. Plus, of course, there's some fun to be had comparing our reliance on social media and technology to what the Cybermen have done to themselves.

Q: Why do you think the Cybermen remain so popular after so many decades?

JL: I personally always found them scarier than the Daleks because they just seem so unstoppable. Most monsters are different to us. The Cybermen are better than us. They are us but stronger and faster. There's a real logic to what they did to themselves and to what they want to do to every living creature in the Universe.

Q: What’s been your favourite scene featuring the Cybermen since their return in 2006?

JL: It's got to be them fighting the Daleks in the Torchwood Institute in Doomsday. "This is not war. This is pest control."

Q: And delving back a little further, which of the early (pre-Rise of the Cybermen) stories is your favourite?

JL: My favourite has to be Silver Nemesis. It's my first real memory of the Cybermen. It's not the most popular story but I love it for just how entertaining it is. Lady Peinforte is a fantastic character and the Doctor and Ace are just absolutely lovely in it. It's funny and bonkers and still feels fresh and modern today.

Q: What was your favourite version of the Cybermen and why? And you’re not allowed to pick the current version!

JL: I think the original version with their cloth faces are still chilling, even today!

Q: Cybermats, Cybershades or Cybermites?

JL: Cybermats! I remember watching the video of Revenge of the Cybermen when I was younger and there's a moment when one jumps up and attacks Sarah Jane Smith and it's horrific!

Q: If you could give the Cybermen just one emotion, what would it be?

JL: Well, it wouldn't be anger! An angry Cyberman would be even more terrifying. Joy! A really happy Cyberman would be sweet.

Q: And finally, what advice would you give anyone who wants to become a writer?

JL: The most important piece of advice for anyone who wants to be a writer is that they should write! It sounds obvious but it's true. Write stories, plays, anything. I'd then suggest looking for local acting and writing groups so you can meet other writers. The BBC Writersroom website is also really helpful so do check that out.

Many thanks to Joseph Lidster!


Categories: Doctor Who

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