STRANGE NEW WORLDS: Our hosts discuss the premiere episode of the brand new Star Trek show on Paramount+, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, a show that’s a throwback not only in continuity, but in its episodic approach to storytelling.
DOCTOR NEW: Last weekend brought the announcement of the actor who will replace Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor in the legacy BBC science-fiction show, Doctor Who. Our hosts discuss their excitement for the announcement of Ncuti Gatwa as the 14th Doctor.
THE DOCTOR IS IN…FLUX: With the most recent series of Doctor Who wrapping up––a six-episode event called Doctor Who: Flux––our hosts discuss its ups, downs, insides, and outs as the show leads to the exit of the current Doctor as played by Jodie Whittaker.
“Smash Talk” (14 Dec. 2018): Where D. Bethel and Andrew discuss Jodie Whittaker’s first season as the main character of Doctor Who.
“Halloween Still” (01 Oct. 2021): Where Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the news that previous showrunner, Russell T. Davies, will be taking over Doctor Who after current showrunner, Chris Chibnall, steps down.
BLOOD AND THUNDER DAYS: To celebrate D. Bethel’s birthday this week, our hosts take a look at another story from the classic run of Doctor Who. In fact, it’s another story from the same season as “Survival.” In fact, it’s the first story from the season that “Survival” brought to a close. Andrew and D. Bethel dive into the pool of Arthurian legend, militarism, and timey-wimey shenagigans found in “Battlefield.”
“Spaceship Mall” (20 August 2021): Where we celebrate Andrew’s birthday by watching and discussing the last story from Doctor Who‘s final season (of its classic run), “Survival.”
Catch D. Bethel on Brunch with Ben & Friends on Sunday, September 5, at 10:30am PST by tuning into the YouTube channel for Ben’s comic shop, Empire’s Comics Vault.
To celebrate Andrew’s birthday today, he and D. Bethel talk about thing they both love a lot: classic Doctor Who.
SURVIVAL OF THE WHO-IEST: “Survival” is an interesting story for a variety of reasons in classic Doctor Who, not the least of which being that it was the last story to air before the show was cancelled in 1989. Beyond that, though, and beyond the questionable production design and special effects, is a real clever story that says as much about the culture it was made in (and today!) as it does about its characters. Though it’s a capstone on a series that was, perhaps, past its prime, its a more endearing and impressive capstone on the era of the Seventh Doctor, played by Sylvester McCoy, and Ace, played by Sophie Aldred. Andrew and Dan take a few minutes to walk through all the impressive––and mildly less impressive––aspects of this story.
RECYCLING OF THE DALEKS: This year’s Doctor Who New Year’s special, “Revolution of the Daleks”, continues the cliffhanger ending of series 12 and says goodbye to some companions while welcoming back Captain Jack Harkness to the show. Andrew and D. Bethel discuss the special while also discuss some of the important changes made to the series lore at the end of series 12.
NEW WHO: Series 12 of Doctor Who started up on New Year’s Day. With three weeks gone and now three episodes in, our Who-loving hosts sit down to talk about it (mostly just the first two episodes SPOILER WARNING for “Spyfall, Part 1” and “Spyfall, Part 2”).
After (approximately) ten weeks of teasing, Andrew and D. Bethel finally talk about the newest series of Doctor Who, which not only introduces Jodie Whittaker as the new Doctor (as well as her substantial crew) but also new showrunner, Chris Chibnall, and his team to bring the world a fresh look at a 55 year-old character.
Since they had so much to discuss, an entire “Shortcast” (despite it being basically the length of an entire episode) was dedicated to talking about the finale of the latest season of Doctor Who. SPOILERS BEWARE. NON-DOCTOR WHO FANS BEWARE (come back next week). Much talk is made about Stephen Moffat’s tenure as showrunner, the themes of the finale, and what Andrew and D. want out of the teased Christmas special.
D. Bethel will be exhibiting at the inaugural Sac Indie Expo in Sacramento this weekend. He’s looking forward to it not only because he gets to chat and hang out with fans and other local creators, but also due to the fact that the event is being held a phenomenal local brewery, Big Sexy Brewing Company. SIE will be on Saturday, July 15 from 12-5pm. It’s free to get in, so if you’re in the area, you have no excuse to not go.
WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew finally sat down and saw Marvel’s newest addition to its cinematic universe, Doctor Strange, while Dan sits down and replays the opening of Mass Effect 2.
BETWEEN TWO WORLDS: After being pushed back in the movie schedule before getting removed completely, The Inhumans finally gets a release date…on television…kind of. While it’s premiere will be in IMAX theaters for a few weeks, Marvel announced that a The Inhumans tv show will air on ABC alongside Agents of SHIELD. Dan and Andrew talk about this newest plan and what it says about the static between Marvel’s movie house and television studios.
NEW WHO, IN COLOR: The Second Doctor’s premiere story, “The Power of the Daleks,” is getting a DVD release in fully animated form (due to the original episodes getting wiped by the BBC in the 1970s), but more interestingly the release will be getting an extra feature of the whole story in color. Andrew and Dan discuss this feature as well as the state of missing Doctor Who, based on the News Blast Andrew wrote about this announcement.
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For all intents and purposes, that was an episode recap.
-“Stayin’ in Black” by Wax Audio
-“More Human Than Human” by White Zombie
-“I Am the Doctor” by Jon Pertwee
Fans of classic Doctor Who already know about tonight’s US premier of the newly re-constituted (or, more appropriately, regenerated) story, “The Power of the Daleks,” first aired in November and December of 1966. Lost in the infamous archive purge that the BBC went through in the early 1970s, the story was targeted for an animated form after several other stories received animated supplements (e.g., “The Invasion,” “The Reign of Terror“). The big difference with this story is that (a) the entire story had to be animated due to the loss of any complete episodes; and (b) this was Patrick Troughton’s first story as the Doctor, taking over after William Hartnell’s departure. In that regard, this is a pivotal story in the history of Doctor Who because it presents the audience with “regeneration” (or, as described in the story, “renewal”) for the first time.
More recently, the BBC announced that this story will also be done with a separate color-animated version, to be included as a separate digital download or as an added feature to the DVD release. One can assume that they based the animation’s colors on production stills from the episode. It can even be seen in the color choice for the Daleks, who sport the classic 1960s white/gray and blue exterior.
This is unexpected, as all of the previous black-and-white Doctor Who stories had been released without any color added. It probably more represents a feature of the animation process and less a desire to colorize old episodes. Previously, a number of Third Doctor stories have been re-colorized by the Doctor Who Restoration Team; only black-and-white versions of color episodes had been retained, so the team used relatively sophisticated methods to restore color to the footage. But there had been no discussion (until now, at least) of adding color to the historically black-and-white episodes.
The question remains to be seen as to whether or not this will be attempted for other episodes. The Restoration Team has done “special editions” and re-cuts of some of the later episodes, including a substantively re-worked rendition of “Enlightenment” and a re-cut “movie version” of “The Curse of Fenric.” It may be simply that “The Power of the Daleks” was a big enough episode to warrant special treatment. Maybe “The Unearthly Child” or “The War Games” will warrant a special colorized version as well. Only time will tell.