Greetings fellow Whovians! As the Doctor Who Editor in these parts, I’m here to introduce you all to a new feature in this little blue corner of What Culture: The Doctor Who Digest. Every week, myself or one of the other awesome Doctor Who writers on this fine site will be bringing you up to snuff with some news items that have been reported in the week before publication. Every Friday, you’ll get a fix of news involving everyone’s favorite Madman With A Box, and if we’re lucky an awesome photo to start things off. (Which will be a LOT easier to come by when the show comes back from its break.)
To start us off, a remembrance. Raymond Cusick, 84, passed away on February 21st of this year. On staff with Who from 1965 to 1966, Cusick created the original design of the Daleks, and was supposedly only paid £100 for his creations. (You can click on the preceding link for The Telegraph’s more detailed obituary, which includes some interesting details about Cusick’s post Who career.) While Terry Nation got most of the credit and reward, Mr. Cusick remains as the true father of the Dalek look. Though he’ll be sorely missed, his legacy will carry on, as the Daleks don’t seem to be going away any time soon. Our condolences to his family.
In other, more lighthearted news, the awesome image above to promote the Series 7.2 premiere was released last night at Midnight. As previously stated, the episode is airing on March 30th, but now we have a title: “The Bells of St. John”. We were also treated to the official synopsis, which reads:
Set in London against the backdrop of new and old iconic landmarks, The Shard and Westminster Bridge, ‘The Bells of St John’ will also establish a new nemesis, the Spoonheads, who will battle the Doctor as he discovers something sinister is lurking in the Wi-Fi.
New baddies? Evil WiFi? Modern London, and a new companion? Steven Moffat’s been reading our Christmas lists again…and he’ll probably deliver a gigantic lump of coal before our smiles grow too fond. At least if the latest rumors involving another puppy kick of a departure are true. This one isn’t as bad as Amy and Rory leaving, but it’s still a massive event if it proves true. According to this news item from The List, it is heavily suggested that one of the props for this season is a tombstone…for River Song. Their source was quoted as saying, “There is a River Song tombstone. This is an actual prop.” Though to be fair, this “source” is a reporter for the Daily Star, and they don’t seem like the most reputable news source.
Further down the rabbit hole in spoiler land is two very distinct rumors involving the 50th anniversary: the first was that Giant Freakin’ Robot is beginning to speculate that David Tennant won’t be invited back for the 50th anniversary special, as an interview with Time Out ran an interview with him stating that he’s “beginning to give up hope that anything’s going to happen”. Now whether this means he’s applying it to himself, or even to the state of the actual anniversary, this is still pure speculation on Giant Freakin’ Robot’s part. Still, GFR’s speculation isn’t unfounded, and their point that either Moffat and Tennant are giving the fans a good show or Tennant is actually hurt about not being invited, is the most valid thing we have to go by.
However, the second item involving the possibility of returning cast members was mentioned by Bleeding Cool. In said item, it was reported that Louise Jameson (Leela) tweeted to an inquiring fan: “None of us knows yet what’s going on, just told to keep the days free.” Automatically two questions come into play: who is included in this usage of “us”, and what days are being kept free? Additionally, if they haven’t begun/finished filming yet, is it too late for David Tennant or anyone else previously unannounced to join in? Moffat! Give us your secrets!
Finally, another reason us fans worldwide are jealous of you fans in the U.K.: on Tuesday night, the BBC hosted the Doctor Who Showcase Symphonic Spectacular in Liverpool. Conducted by ever-present Ben Foster, and hosted by Rory’s dad himself Mark Williams, the concert featured music from all throughout the series’ live span, but “…most of the set was devoted to Matt Smith’s tenure as Doctor.” And before anyone asks, yes they were playing Series 7.1 music and yes they did play what’s now known as “The Final Chapter of Amelia Pond”, but is commonly known to fans as “that moment we all had a teary breakdown and had to pause ‘The Angels Take Manhattan’”.
So there we have it: the first ever Doctor Who Digest at What Culture. Thanks for reading and dealing with the admittedly rough format, but there’ still some tweaking that’ll probably have to be done. Suffice it to say, we’ve only just begun. Until next time, dear readers, Geronimo!
Got a Doctor Who tip for the next edition of the Doctor Who Digest? Email it to me at email@example.com, and don’t forget to leave a name for me to drop in recognition of your detective work!
This article was first posted on March 1, 2013