Tuesday, January 31, 2012

JANUARY NEWS ROUND~UP

Blimey, it's almost February! And so time for the first news round~up of 2012 - read the last one HERE. Check out all the tidbits from January below.

SERIES 6
The Readers' Poll 2011 Results!
2011 Review of the Year
Top 10 Doctor Who Stories of 2011

SERIES 7
Guide to Series 7

REVIEWS
Goodbye Bannerman Road
The Lost Stories - The Fourth Doctor Box Set
The Sensorites DVD
The Doctor, The Widow & the Wardrobe DVD

LISTS
10 Actors Who Should Be The Master
10 Villains/Aliens/Baddies Who Should Return
10 TW/SJA Characters Who Should Appear In Doctor Who
10 Characters Who Should Return
10 Actresses Who Should Be The Next Companion
Top 10 Doctor Who Stories of 2011

MERCHANDISE
PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Robots of Death
PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Three Doctors
Revisitations 3 DVD artwork
The Eternity Clock new trailer
Revisitations 3 DVD boxset details
BBC Books announce new Matt Smith title
Doctor Who Magazine 443 details
The Sarah Jane Adventures Series 5 DVD details
Feb Events at the Doctor Who Experience

MISC.
Vote for Blogtor Who in the Shorty Awards!
RTD's new show Aliens Vs Wizards
Alex Kingston in Upstairs Downstairs
Doctor Who on The Big Bang Theory
Drive director "turned down" for Doctor Who
Doctor Who at the NTAs
John Barrowman in Hustle
Doctor Who on Room 101
Adrian Lester talks Doctor Who
Matt Smith on Blue Peter
Fandom Is A Way Of Life documentary
Doctor Who reference on Leverage
Karen Gillan & Martin Freeman on The Graham Norton Show
Murray Gold plays I Am The Doctor
Alex Kingston in Upstairs Downstairs
Matt Smith in Bert and Dickie

SHERLOCK
Finale promo pics
The Hounds of Baskerville clip
Classic Holmes in Sherlock
The Hounds of Baskerville pics



Alex Kingston in Upstairs Downstairs

The BBC have issued a new promotional picture from Upstairs Downstairs starring Alex Kingston (River Song) - click on the image below for a bigger version. Also featured are Who alumni Jean Marsh (The Daleks' Master Plan and Battlefield) and Anne Reid (The Curse of Fenric and Smith & Jones).

Thanks to BBC Pictures

Monday, January 30, 2012

RTD's new show Aliens Vs Wizards

More information has emerged regarding former Doctor Who showrunner Russell T Davies' new children's show, Aliens Vs Wizards. Co~created with Phil Ford (The Waters Of Mars and various The Sarah Jane Adventures stories), the "lavish multimillion-pound series" will air in the autumn on CBBC. Find below a collection of the info so far:
26 episodes have been commissioned (the first series includes 12).

Writers include: Gareth Roberts (The Lodger, Closing Time, etc... and various The Sarah Jane Adventures stories); Joe Lidster (Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures writer) and Clayton Hickman (former Doctor Who Magazine editor and co-writer of Goodbye, Sarah Jane Smith).

Doctor Who Series 5 costume designer Ray Holman is working on the series.

It will feature lots of prosthetic monsters and not just computer generated imagery.

Derek Ritchie (Second Assistant Director on BBC Three's Being Human) is the Script Editor.
You can read loads more about Aliens Vs Wizards on a new fan~page HERE.



RECENT POSTS
Feb Events at the Doctor Who Experience
PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Three Doctors
10 Actors Who Should Be The Master
PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Robots of Death
Doctor Who on The Big Bang Theory

Feb Events at the Doctor Who Experience

The Doctor Who Experience is preparing for its final week in London this February half term, and to make sure it goes out with a bang, a whole host of additional activities are planned to thrill visitors for the last time in London, before the exhibition moves to Cardiff in the summer.

Saturday 11th February sees the return of Doctor Who choreographer Ailsa Berk who will be giving visitors a chance to perfect their monster moves with special lessons on how to walk like a Judoon Trooper or a Cyberman.

Monday 13th February, the team from Millennium FX share their behind-the-scenes knowledge on the inspiration behind some of the show’s iconic characters, with live design and sculpt demonstrations, as well as drawing demonstrations on the 17th February.

Wednesday 15th February, visitors have the rare opportunity to come face-to-face with the Doctor’s terrifying adversaries, the Cybermen and the telepathic Ood.

Thursday 16th February you can become your favourite monster, as Doctor Who makeup technicians will be ready to transform you into your choice of a Silurian, Cyberman, Clockwork Droid or Weeping Angel.

The show comes to a close on Wednesday 22nd February where fans get the chance to bid a final farewell to the Doctor and some of the most recent monsters from the series, before its big move to Cardiff. So if you want to have Ood-les of fun this February half term, visit The Doctor Who Experience at London’s Olympia by the 22nd!

The Doctor Who Experience allows visitors to join the Doctor on a journey through time and space, encountering some of the best-loved and scariest monsters from the hit international, television series. Special scenes filmed with current Doctor, Matt Smith, combine with amazing special effects and the chance to enter a recreation of the modern TARDIS interior topped off by a breathtaking 3-D finale.

Thanks to BBC Worldwide



Sunday, January 29, 2012

PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Three Doctors

As there is so much material on the Revisitations 3 box set (featuring three stories over five discs), I've split the review into their respective parts - with each focusing on the separate tales. You can read full details about the box set HERE but, first up it's the 10th Anniversary story, The Three Doctors.


As with my preview of The Robots of Death from the same set, it seems pointless to go over a story that has already been made available on DVD that many of you probably already own. But I will say that The Three Doctors is not, for me, vintage Who. Some of you will already know this, but The Third Doctor era doesn't do much for me; with few stories that I return to from Pertwee's time.

Likewise, I'm no Troughton aficionado either so a story featuring the pair of them never really appealed to me (having first watch it on a 1983 repeat). It is, however, a bit of a fun romp with the two Time Lords bouncing off with another very well with a massive dose of mythology thrown in for good measure. And Gel Guards. *shivers* Anyway, I'm sure you know all about it so I shan't bore you further with my thoughts and we'll forge into the extras.

EXTRAS
I have to say that the original DVD release of The Three Doctors (some complete with a nifty toy car of Bessie) had a perfectly acceptable array of special features (and they are all included here except, for some reason, Jon Pertwee at Panopticon), so it's a bit odd that this particular story was chosen for the Revisitations treatment. Of course, the 1973 tale didn't receive the now traditional "making of" - so that's probably why the team felt the need to go back and revise.

And that making of, titled Happy Birthday To Who, is indeed a story worth telling and put together satisfactorily. William Hartnell's involvement in The Three Doctors, or lack of, is a deeply saddening tale and you'll certainly feel more than admiration for Billy and much respect for those who dealt with such a blow to the production so well. There's no real angle to the documentary, however, and it does have a slightly unfocused feel to it; the ending is most abrupt with no real engagement with the story post~broadcast.

Was Doctor Who Rubbish? is a little oddity (to put it mildly). As you can perhaps guess, this featurette examines that age~old question: was Doctor Who rubbish? (If you don't understand the query then perhaps this isn't the extra for you.) The interviewees aren't exactly an enigmatic bunch, coming off rather earnest and po~faced at times. It's nicely put together but it's completely ineffectual in addressing the topic with any credibility. A good idea that could have been executed far, far better.

Completing the new selection of VAM is Girls, Girls, Girls where we find the ladies of the 1970s: Katy Manning, Caroline John and Louise Jameson discussing their time in Doctor Who (and beyond). The gals are all in good form and, like their 80s counterparts (on the Paradise Towers DVD), make for a wonderfully amusing watch.

Sadly, there's only one commentary (from the original release) and I'm left wondering just how The Three Doctors (a four~parter) warrants two~discs. If you don't have the story already then this is a superb collection but if you do own it then I'm afraid the extras just don't justify a redux.

Thanks to 2|entertain
RECENT POSTS
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"Drive" director "turned down" for Doctor Who
PREVIEW: Goodbye Bannerman Road

Saturday, January 28, 2012

10 Actors Who Should Be The Master

After my misogynistic female~only "Companion" list, comes this bloke~only rundown of actors who Blogtor thinks would make an excellent choice for The Master after John Simm leaves the role (whenever that may be...). Just missing out on a place were Tom Baker and David Tennant. Now, what hunks made the Top 10...?

10. COLIN FIRTH
Now, to be honest, I wouldn't have had old Firthy in the list - he's a "proper" movie actor, after all (despite St Trinians and Bridget Jones' Diary 2) - but after his positive comments regarding Doctor Who, the Firthster is most definitely in! He also wants to play a villain which is handy. I envisage old Colin as a more laid back, suave Time Lord than Simm, and much more in control of his inner drummers.


9. COLIN MORGAN
You know, if you'd told me he was the Midnight Monster from the 2008 episode, erm, Midnight, then I would not have batted an eyelid. Not one bit. The Morganator, as some refer to him, has the typical scowl of as emotionally unaffected/confused teenager (insert "aren't all teens like that?" gag here) that makes him perfect for a "monster". And what better monster than Gallifrey's blackest of sheep, The Master...


8. ALAN RICKMAN
One of my favourite things to do, when pottering around the house, is to say the word "potter" in the style of Alan Rickman (he was in the Harry Potter films, apparently). But what could be better than Alan Rickman purring the name of Hogwart's finest? That's right, the Rick~o~tron slurring "Dock~tor" as he hatches yet another diabolical scheme...


7. BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH
What? Benny Thundersnatch and not his Sherlock nemesis Andrew Scott?? Yeah, you read right! Scott, for me is too obvious a choice after his masterful role as Moriarty and it would be refreshing to see Thunders play a nasty piece of work. Uh oh, hold on - that's what he's already doing... #satire Holmes, despite being a "goody" is, really, a "baddy" (in terms of people, at least) and his phone~wielding, nasty persona isn't too far from Simm's portrayal...


6. MATT BERRY
Those familiar with the brilliant UK sitcom The IT Crowd will be well aware of this guy. Berry is, without wanting to use the world's most overused cliche, a larger than life character and perhaps the perfect accompaniment to Matt Smith's energized and slightly zany Doctor. His comedic persona is not unlike a cross between Eric Roberts and Anthony Ainley; one can imagine a scenario where, instead of world domination, he invents a lady~magnet to satisfy his Earthly lusts...


5. CHIWETEL EJIOFOR
Chewy, as his BFFs call him, did some top actoring up against Christopher Eccleston (who older readers may remember starred in GI Joe) in the BBC's recent, The Shadow Line. This was after a stab at the big screen with a diverse range of movies such as the apocalyptically woeful 2012, the "interesting" American Gangster and the genuinely brilliant Children Of Men. (Nerd~o~trons will also note that he starred in Serenity.) Perhaps he's put notions of Hollywood behind him and ready to embrace the biggest role on the small screen...


4. PHILIP GLENISTER
Bosh! I'm The Master *punch* Move it you nonce! *pushes out way* Now, where's my TARDIS? *punch, punch* Did you nick my motor, Doctor? *punch* You look too young to be driving a Type 40 matey *punch* Maybe I'll just take your keys *snatch* And who's this bit of totty? *stomps* His assistant? *grabs* You're mine now sweetheart *Vwrop vworp*

3. BEN WHISHAW
Cooo, ain't he dreamy? (I say this, I've no idea if he is or not.) Matching Matt Smith's "youth" (he's positively ancient now though, surely?), Whishaw could replicate The Doctor's personality in the same way that Simm was Tennant's shadowy reflection. Sadly, for us, his star seems to be on the rise and Benny boy is currently filming the new James Bond Rimming movie. But, as he showed in last year's yawn~fest The Hour, he's still prepared to slum it on the BEEB.

2. AIDAN TURNER
Cooo, ain't he.. uh, done that already. Being Human's Mitchell has trotted off to the big time to star in The Hobbit (along with Marty Freebles and Benny Thundersnatch) so perhaps we can nab him as The Master before Turner becomes the internationally renowned handsome man that he's destined to become. His rakish charm, so evident in the sadly short~lived Desperate Romantics, would make for a very different kind of Time Lord - perhaps one where trouser~tightening is a weapon...

1. HARRY LLOYD
He may very well have played a young Dennis Thatcher in The Iron Lady recently (to delightful affect, it should be said), but the Lloyd~a~tron was evil personified as Baines in 2007's Human Nature/The Family Of Blood. An absolute stand~out performance. The great-great-great-grandson of Charles Dickens (no, really) starred alongside the current Master in C4's The Devil's Whore so maybe he picked up a trick or three from Johnny Simm. Failing that, Lloyd should play Michael Fassbender in a film of his life story...







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PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Robots of Death

PREVIEW: Revisitations 3 - The Robots of Death

As there is so much material on the Revisitations 3 box set (featuring three stories on five discs), I've split the review into their respective parts - with each focusing on the separate tales. You can read full details about the box set HERE but, first up, the Tom Baker 1977 outing, The Robots of Death.

There are very few perfect, and I mean literally, perfect Doctor Who stories. Even with the best there's usually a Skarasen or Magma monster to slightly mess up the production. But here is a bona fide perfect tale. (Not the best, I'm saying.) Anyway, there's little point in actually reviewing it as, no doubt, you've seen it and probably own it on DVD already - it's the extras you're interested in. But, suffice to say this is a genuine classic in the Whoeuvre

EXTRAS
The original DVD release, incredibly almost 12 years ago (actual gasps), didn't serve the perfection of the story that well - they had the cheek to list "Graphical Menus" as a Special Feature. (Ah, were we so simple in 2000?) So, thankfully, The Robots of Death has been given the VAM it deserves; and a suitably wonderful array of extras at that.

The main documentary, The Sandmine Murders, is your expected behind~the~scenes look at the story with contributions from the cast and crew. It's fact~packed and features great turns from Tommy B, Louise Jamieson, Philip Hinchfliffe, Michael Bryant, David Collings and Brian Croucher. Highlights include Baker being almost chaste about his on~set behaviour and Croucher calling his leading actor a "creative terrorist." As always, with the "classic" DVD range, it's a fascinating watch with fantastic subjects, and cut together with style.

The other "documentary" is Robophobia which, you quickly discover, is not an entirely serious look at robots. Presented by Toby Hadoke (who seems to be on all the classic DVD release these days #jealous), we are amusingly guided through the history of robots; featuring some of the best/worst from Doctor Who (though none post~1989). It's fittingly humorous and the Fifties~style production looks great; complete with a special guest role for... well, I shan't spoil it for you.

The original audio commentary is included (featuring producer Hinchcliffe and writer Chris Boucher) but there's also a newly recorded commentary with Tom Baker, Louise Jameson, Pamela Salem and director Michael E Briant. It's always good to have actors on audio duties and the three here are an absolute riot, with stories, ribbing and more stories to beguile the listener with. Baker reveals, perhaps with tongue in cheek, that children gave him ideas to put in the show; even suggesting that jelly babies came from some kids he'd met (fact fans will know, of course, that Jelly Babies were used by The Second Doctor).

Baker even manages to shoehorn in a dig at the new series, proclaiming that Julian Bleach's Davros (in The Stolen Earth/Journey's End) as a "not a very good impression" of Michael Wisher's original version (Genesis of the Daleks). Yet again, however, you do get the usual bemoaning how television works these days - which is frankly getting a bit tedious (cropping up now on every release). And there's a few tales from the cast and crew which pop up in the main docco (an irritation to completists who devour everything).

Bolstering these are the original DVD extras (Photo Gallery, Studio Floor Plans, clip featuring Studio Sound and Model Sequences) complemented by the additions of the always essential Production Notes and Radio Times listings. Thus resulting in a perfect collection for a perfect story.

Uh~oh, I just remembered. Those tin~foil slippers. Bah!

Thanks to 2|entertain
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10 TW/SJA Characters Who Should Appear In Doctor Who
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Drive director "turned down" for Doctor Who

Friday, January 27, 2012

Lists!

Collected here are the lists that Blogtor has done over the years!

The Blogtor Who Top 50 Doctor Who Stories, OF ALL TIME!!

Top 9 Ninth Doctor Moments
Blogtor Who Readers' Poll 2013
Blogtor Who Readers' Poll - The Matt Smith era 
Blogtor Who Writers' Faves of 2013
Blogtor Who Writers' Matt Smith era Faves
50 Things I'd Like To See In The 50th Anniversary!
50 Things in the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary trailer
12 Actresses For the 12th Doctor
12 Actors For The 12th Doctor
Bad Dads & Dude Dads: The Fathers of New Who
25 Underappreciated Doctor Who stories
Top 11 "Other" Doctors
10 Great Series Openers 
Classic Monsters That Should Return
The Blogtor Who Review of 2012
The Readers' Poll 2012
11 Heart~Melting Moments
Top 10 Doctor Who In-Jokes  
10 Moments That Made You Go WHAAA??
Top 10 Christmas Episodes
Series 7 Merchandise You Won't Find In Shops...
Who Should Star in An Adventure In Space & Time?
10 Non~Dalek Stories That Feature Daleks
Top 10 Kisses From The Doctor!
10 Planets The Doctor Should Revisit
10 Cramaze~Balls Dr. Who Robots
10 Must~See Sarah Jane Adventures
10 TW/SJA Characters Who Should Appear In Doctor Who
Doctor Who's USA Top 10
10 Liz Two Moments 
10 Characters Who Should Return To Doctor Who
10 Actresses Who Should Be The Next Companion
10 Actors Who Should Be The Master
10 Villains/Aliens/Baddies Who Should Return To Doctor Who  
The Readers' Poll 2011 Results!
Top 10 Doctor Who Stories of 2011
The Readers' Poll 2010
Top 10 Doctor Who Stories of 2010
Actress Wishlist for Series 6/7
Actor Wishlist for Series 6/7  

Doctor Who on The Big Bang Theory


Last night's episode of US sitcom The Big Bang Theory featured a reference to Doctor Who - watch it in the player above. This is not the first time Who has featured on the show - see HERE.

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

"Drive" director "turned down" for Doctor Who

The director of last year's hugely popular film Drive, Nicolas Winding Refn, has revealed that he wanted to direct an episode of Doctor Who - but was turned down. He told Short List.com:
I would have loved to direct Doctor Who but they didn’t want me — they turned me down last year. Maybe if they revive Blake’s 7 I could do that. I love it. It’s great. That could be fun to update.

PREVIEW: Goodbye Bannerman Road

Courtesy of Dene Films

For the final series release of The Sarah Jane Adventures, fans have been treated to a documentary - a first for the DVD range of the Doctor Who spin~off series. Goodbye Bannerman Road: Remembering Elisabeth Sladen is a twenty~minute tribute to the late actress featuring Daniel Anthony (who played Clyde Langer), Anjli Mohindra (Rani Chandra), Gary Russell (Script Editor) and Matt Smith (The Eleventh Doctor).

Courtesy of Dene Films

Even as the film starts, the mood is incredibly emotional with newly shot footage of Sarah Jane's house as it stands today accompanied by a moving soundtrack. Daniel and Anjli are interviewed outside their old stomping~ground and it's clear from their stories that Lis meant a great deal to them; and still does. The former refers to the actress as a "lovable headmistress" though, interestingly, goes on to discuss her insecurities.

Courtesy of Dene Films

Matt is usual ebullient self when chatting about Sladen's immense career, expressing his admiration for an actress who came back into Doctor Who and then managed the feat of walking away with her own show. He laments her loss, saying: "... to get her on Doctor Who would have been a dream". Similarly writer Gary Russell, also a close friend of Lis, was effusive about the actress though, for no moment, was tempted to continue the television series without her. Again, the attention to detail, filming Russell in Sarah Jane's house was a nice touch.

Another appreciated addition, though deeply upsetting at the same time, was the reaction to her death on chilren's show, Newsround; where Daniel and Tommy Knight (who played Sarah Jane's "son", Luke) read out comments from thousands of young people who had contacted the website. Simple, yet astonishing in just how Lis affected the young and old.

Courtesy of Dene Films

Taking all the care and attention that the "classic" Doctor Who DVD range receives, Chris Chapman, who has made some terrific documentaries for the aforementioned range (including, most recently, the wonderful Looking For Peter on The Sensorites), has produced a loving tribute to a well~loved actress. Goodbye Bannerman Road, with its close collection of interviewees and meaningful location work, is a warm, yet all too brief, feature that will undoubtedly leave an impression of a great, great lady; despite the incredibly sad nature of the film.

Courtesy of Dene Films

Further credit must also go to 2|entertain for including such a magnificent tribute, especially as the Fifth Series release has had a much quicker turnaround than previous series releases (indeed, plaudits to the producers for getting this documentary together in such a short space of time; a matter of weeks, I believe).

Goodbye Bannerman Road is a perfect reminder of what made The Sarah Jane Adventures so very special - Sarah Jane herself, Elisabeth Sladen.

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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Doctor Who at the NTAs

video

The National Television Awards took place in the UK tonight and there were a couple of wins for Doctor Who. Above you can see Karen Gillan win Best Actress and below you can watch Matt Smith win Best Actor.

video

Below you can see the Doctor Who segment of the Best Drama category featuring a quick snatch of Arthur Darvill and Karen Gillan.

video

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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Revisitations 3 DVD artwork

2|entertain have released the individual artwork for each of the stories included in the Revisitations 3 DVD box set (full details HERE). Click on the covers for The Tomb of the Cybermen, The Three Doctors and The Robots of Death below for bigger versions.



10 TW/SJA Characters Who Should Appear In Doctor Who

If you don't know what TW and SJA mean, then please stop reading. Now. Thanks. Anyway, yup! It's yet another list! This time, Blogtor has been looking at the Whoniverse and included below are ten characters (well there's actually more, I cheated with some) from The Sarah Jane Adventures and Torchwood who would should make appearance in Doctor Who. Let the insanity begin...
IANTO
Haha, only joking - he's DEAD! He is NOT coming back! #lightsmatch
Anyway, here's the real ten...

10. LOIS HABIBA
The late re~write for Martha Jones (yeah, thanks Law & Order - you thieving bastards!), the secretary turned world~saver proved to be quite the hit for the third series of Torchwood. Actress Cush Jumbo pushed aside any Freema comparisons with wads of personality and a soup├žon of assured sexiness. She was last seen banged up in a cell, at the end of Children Of Earth; maybe it's time Doctor Who sprung her out...?

9. GITA & HARESH CHANDRA
Facing the difficult task or "replacing" Chrissie and Alan Jackson (who both very nearly made the Top 10), Rani's parents fitted in perfectly into Bannerman Road. Ace Bhatti, who recently ripped it up bad~style on Eastenders, played the straight head~teacher down a tea whilst his missus, played by Mina Anwar, provided constant comic entertainment (that she previously demonstrated on The Thin Blue Line) with her continual, though unintentional, needling of Sarah Jane.

8. ANDY DAVIDSON
One of the features of the most recent Torchwood series, Miracle Day, that warmed my heart greatly was the appearance of this guy, played with affable charm by the lurvely Tom Price. I was so pleased that, even though it was a "big" US production, the "little" guy was still remembered. And what a journey for "PC" Andy Davidson. From a loyal, though lowly copper, popping up every now and again during the first two series to helping save the world on more than  one occasion. If anything, out of persistence, Andy deserves a shot at Who.

7. DIANE
One of Torchwood's shining moments was the time~traveling tale from Series One, Out of Time, where three people from the 1950s ended up in modern day Cardiff. One of these unfortunate human beings was Diane, a spunky pilot with a fine line in make~up and a rather trouser~tightening approach to sex (nice one Torchers!). Diane got chummy with Owen and would later turn up to haunt him, thus helping cause the apocalypse (nearly), in the finale End of Days. Louise Delamere's fine performance as a woman out of time wherever she lay (a bit like my first wife) was genuinely touching and is still one of the show's highlights. Would make for an excellent companion to the Time Lord.


6. RANI & CLYDE
Like her parents, Rani had the unenviable task of replacing a Bannerman Road fave. And, for her, it was an even more Herculean task as she was taking over from, what ostensibly was, a "companion". But such a hit was she that the words Maria Jackson were but a faint whisper by the time she's finished her first year with Sarah Jane & Co. Similarly, Clyde became the star of the show towards the end, nabbing all the best lines and receiving some tremendous stories (The Curse of Clyde Langer, for example). The couple made for an electric watch (Series 4's The Empty Planet demonstrated this neatly) and I can't recall such a likable and fun duo on television. I doff my cap to both Anjli Mohindra and Daniel Anthony and sincerely hope they get some more TARDIS action in the future.

5. BILIS MANGER
Man, this guy fah~reaked me out. With no offense intended towards actor Murray Melvin, he has the look of an utter demon. Sure, he may have a tasty suit and nifty cravat but his crafted skull and piercing eyes made for one of the most delicious villains in the entirety of the Whoeuvre. Bilis was all smiles and pictures when he met some of the Torchwood gang in Captain Jack Harkness but by the time the next episode came long, End of Days, his role as "bad guy" was confirmed. Thankfully, the makers of the show decided to retain total mystery to who he was. We know nothing about him and he flopped off before he could explain his "evil" time~jumping deeds. His appearance was so perfect that I did wonder, whilst surrounded by clocks in his shop, if Bilis would be revealed to be The Master (which I'm glad they didn't, by the way). Having said that, maybe he did just hop into one of the grandfather clocks and Vworp away...

4. ALICE GUPPY & EMILY HOLROYD
Did someone say Torchwood 1899: The Series? if not, they blummin' should! Making a splash in the Series 2 finale (Fragments and Exit Wounds), these two ladies have a certain Vastra and Jenny feisty quality about them too. Their introduction to the Whoniverse saw them killing Captain Jack, savagely torturing him and then making him work for Torchwood - not bad ladies. Not bad at all! Despite starring in Outcasts (a BBC sci~fi misfire, to put it politely), Amy Manson would make a terrific ally/enemy for The Doctor as Guppy whilst BFF Holroyd, played by Heather Craney (a Holby City and Eastenders stalwart) is on hand to straddle any passers~by. And aren't their outfits purty?

3. THE SHOPKEEPER
Talk about text~book enigmatic, this guy is The Enigma~tron! He is positively rolling in riddle~ocious~ness (it's a word!). This chap first popped up in The Sarah Jane Adventures, trapping our heroes and then subsequently splitting them up and sending them back in time - the nerve! But he wasn't a bad guy (oh no!), The Shopkeeper was just keeping the universe in balance - not unlike a certain other friend of Sarah Jane's... Played with wonderful suavetry (it's a word!) by Cyril Nri, even got a brief return in the final series (Sky). One certainly hopes that he is indeed another Time Lord, awaiting to be found...

2. JILLY KITZINGER
Hhmm. Lauren Ambrose*.

1. THE TRICKSTER
This guy. *Does Goodfellas style hang gesture* This guy! So immense was his appeal, so awesome and mighty was his darkness that not only did he get a mention in both Doctor Who and Torchwood (well, The Trickster's Brigade did in Turn Left and Immortal Sins), but The Doctor himself had to crossover to The Sarah Jane Adventures in order to defeat him!  The stand~off between them during The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith was quite something with a fangasm~inducing mention of The flippin' Key To Time.
The Trickster's original appearance, Whatever Happened to Sarah Jane?, remains my favourite of his trilogy; where the lurvely Elisabeth Sladen was replaced by the equally lurvely Jane Asher. Writer Gareth Roberts created  one of the great Whoniverse villains; meddling with time and people with horrific consequences, just for fun. The Temptation of Sarah Jane Smith displayed a memorable, and deeply unsettling, view of the future juxtaposed with some heart~breaking moments for Sarah Jane.
Special mention must also go to the man behind the cloak, Paul Marc Davies who also manged the feat of appearing in the Doctor Who story Utopia and the Torchwood tale, Exit Wounds. The Trickster, without a doubt, is the one character from the spin~offs that deserves to face~off against The Doctor on a Saturday night around 7pm.


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