Actor Peter Capaldi's highly-anticipated debut as Doctor Who has leaked online, six weeks before its broadcast date. The Oscar winner was unveiled as the new Time Lord last year (13), taking over from Matt Smith, and he was introduced to viewers in a special Christmas episode of the sci-fi hit in December (13).
Capaldi's first full episode as the time traveller is due to be broadcast next month (Aug14), but a rough cut copy has been posted on the Internet.
Titled Deep Breath, the early edit is in black and white and is yet to have any special effects added.
However, writer Steven Moffat is urging Doctor Who fans to resist the temptation to watch the leaked copy, saying, "Someone has screwed up. The launch of a new Time Lord is the most exciting but the most dangerous moment in the show - so let's keep Peter Capaldi's first episode special."
The leak is the latest blow to BBC bosses, who were already reeling from the news last week (beg07Jul14) that the scripts for five new Doctor Who episodes have been posted on the Internet.
It is believed the rough cut of Deep Breath has leaked from the same source.
When it was announced earlier this month that Keeley Hawes would be joining Season 8 of Doctor Who , the fan reaction was generally positive. But the fans' hearts collectively sunk upon perusal of her promo images.
Look, I'm a fan of Hawes' (she was great in Death at a Funeral, wasn't she?). And I think she looks fabulous in character as guest role Ms. Delphox on the sci-fi series. There's just one fly in the ointment. And that fly is the fact that she looks dangerously close to fitting Steven Moffat's ready-made sexy older vixen trickster mold. Will Ms. Delphox follow in the footsteps of River Song, Tasha Lem, Liz 10, et al? Back when the Christmas special aired, Tasha Lem was the source of great debate: her similarities to River (the flirtatious banter seemed tailor-made for the Doctor's Wife) were so striking that fans weren't sure if she was a casualty of lazy writing or yet another enigma to follow (and let's not get started on female enigmas in Doctor Who, shall we?)
Unfortunately, signs seem to indicate that Ms. Delphox, like River-doppelganger Tasha Lem before her, will be another coin in Moffat's Strong Female Character trope jar. Behold her character description: a "powerful out-of-this-world character with a dark secret." Add that to her sassy cat-eye glasses and red lipstick, and it looks like we've got ourselves another River Song on our hands.
Now, don't get me wrong: I love River (and Alex Kingston). I certainly do not have a problem with bad-ass, gun-totin', wise-crackin' ladies (Buffy, anyone?) It's more the fact that Moffat seems to think he can get away with recycling what's essentially the same character time and time again.
Oh, Moffat, you sexist writer you. When will you learn?
It seems the BBC has found their ratings guru in Steven Moffat; as showrunner for both Doctor Who and Sherlock, he’s pulled in some of the biggest numbers for the network. The Doctor Who 50th anniversary special was watched by 10.6 million viewers, the Christmas special by 8.3 million people while the Sherlock season three premiere garnered the attention of 9.2 million viewers. It’s safe to say that — at least ratings wise — Moffat is BBC’s not-so-secret weapon.
However, discontent has been brewing within the Doctor Who fandom about Moffat’s complex storylines (he tries to fit a whole 2-hour story into a 1-hour episode). Fans have also criticized the lack of character development and his total aversion to a female Doctor (referring to a female Doctor as being like a cross-dressing Queen of England).
While Russell T. Davies was executive producer of Doctor Who, Moffat wrote many episodes that are some of the fans’ favorites, but viewers are skeptical of his ability to run the whole series.
On the contrary, pretty much every complaint fans have of Moffat’s Doctor Who works to his advantage when it comes to Sherlock. Complex plotlines? They’re great when you have an extra hour to fill. Character development? Sir Arthur Conan Doyle took care of it. Female characters? Who needs them! The fans come back again and again for John Watson (Martin Freeman) and Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch).
Which is why we’re proposing that Moffat give up Doctor Who — which might be raking in the ratings, but who knows how long that will continue — and focus primarily on Sherlock. Then, everyone will be happy and we won’t have to wait another two years for more Sherlock.
Actor Peter Capaldi suffered a dislocated thumb while filming new drama The Musketeers. Capaldi, who became the latest incarnation of Doctor Who in the TV favourite's 2013 Christmas special, stars as the villainous Cardinal Richelieu in the historical drama.
The actor reveals the set of the U.K. TV show was rife with accidents and injuries and he was left in agonising pain after wrenching his thumb out of its socket, but simply gritted his teeth and pushed it back in.
The Thick of It star tells Event magazine, "The production staff suffered a few injuries, dislocated shoulders, bruised shins, concussion. It's an occupational hazard of being a swashbuckler. I suffered a nasty dislocated thumb, but embarrassingly not from swinging a sword. It came from a domestic with Milady (played by Maimie McCoy). I threw her against the wall, not realising I'd caught my thumb in her frock. I felt a jab of pain. And when the director said 'Cut!' I looked down and saw my thumb was the wrong way round. Nasty. Instinct took over and I shoved it back into place. Which made my eyes water and my knees go weak."
The Musketeers is due to premiere on the BBC later this month (Jan14).
Steven Moffat, once lauded for his near-iconic monsters ("Are you my mummy?" The Weeping Angels, and "Who turned off the lights?" all come to mind) now takes the brunt of quite a lot of criticism. Perhaps one-offs like "Blink" and two-episode continuations like "Silence in the Library"/"The Forest of the Dead" were more in his wheelhouse, because it's become increasingly clear that season-spanning arcs and show mythology are not.
Another widely conceived weakness? His women. When River Song first came onto the fold, people huzzah-ed for her general badassery. Amy got a similar warm welcome – but after a spell, we began to realize a trend: his women are defined by their mystery (there's something to be said about the male gaze here, but I'm not smart enough to do so). With Amy (AKA "The Girl Who Waited"), it was her wedding and pregnancy, and with Clara ("The Impossible Girl" – another problematic moniker) it was her reincarnations scattered throughout time and space.
The mystery surrounding her existence was solved a couple episodes ago in "The Name of the Doctor," where we learn that she exists solely to save the Doctor time and time again, in infinite scenarios. Hrmph. I mean, the Doctor is great and all, but really? Really?
But with that out of the way, her character might be able to do more than serve as an enigma for Eleven: already in "The Day of the Doctor" and "The Time of the Doctor" we've seen her getting a little more play. Jenna Coleman does nicely with what she gets (I thought she was especially good in her final scenes with Matt Smith in the Christmas special), and here's hoping we get to see Clara grow beyond her "Impossible Girl" status. It'll be especially exciting to see how her relationship with the Doctor adjusts – will they remain an almost-couple with a creepy age gap (a la Rose and Nine), or will she stop "fancying" him?
It may be months away, but we can't wait for season 8, problematic female characterization and all.
Everyone has their preferences when it comes to New Who – Tennant vs. Smith, Russell T. Davies vs. Steven Moffat, the hating Martha contingencies, the Clara-has-no-personality clubs – but I think I can safely say that all parties awaited the recent Christmas special with similar fervor.
But did it deliver? Alas, it seems that most Doctor Who fans agree that it did not. It should have – it had all of the trappings of a great episode: a regeneration, a Doctor-as-fake-boyfriend (my favorite sitcom trope), a surprise-naked scene, flirtations with a fabulous priestess, a town called Christmas, and wooden cybermen – heck, silence even fell "when the question was asked." It should have, by all accounts, been awesome, but it decidedly wasn't. What went wrong?
The list above, though full of strengths, was actually one of the problems – there was simply too much going on to cram into one episode. With so much plot, we were presented with an equal number of confusing plot holes. True, there were an awful lot of answers in this episode – pretty much every question set up in the Eleven arc, except the eponymous "Doc-tor WHO? Doc-tor WHO?" (groan). Sure, it was great to find out that the terrifying Silence were engineered to be the perfect confessors, but the idea that the Time Lords created the cracks in the universe that we've been chasing since series 5? Disappointing, just like the mysteries of "The Impossible Girl," "The Girl Who Waited" and River Song (does she have an obnoxious moniker?).
Also, two flirtations in one episode was too much, even for New Who's Lothario-esque Doctor. It was hard to sustain the Clara/Doctor love storyline with Tasha Lem around, no matter how fabulous she happened to be (also, personality-wise, she was a dead ringer for River Song – a clue to a new mystery, or Stephen Moffat's inability to write women rearing its ugly head again? Only time will tell). The whole "she's just your type" joke didn't play well against the "I secretly fancy [him]" joke, not to mention all of the meaningful face-caressing going on (I'm still mad we didn't get the kiss we deserved).
There were a lot of truly great moments in this special – the way that the Doctor decides to spend his last regeneration defending Christmas, his farewell to Amy, the final removal of the bowtie (sob), and our first glimpse of Twelve – all pitch-perfect. But like a stomachache-inducing binge of Christmas cookies, this episode just had too much of a good thing to truly give Matt Smith the send-off he deserved.
* The Naked Doctor was another example of "too much of a good thing" – it just didn't fit in with the episode. Besides, there may be no beating Naked!Ten in "Journey's End."
* The fake-boyfriend storyline also failed to live up to its promising sitcom-esque potential. It could have been glorious!
The Doctor Who Christmas special broke ratings records in America. The Time of The Doctor episode, which aired on BBC America on Christmas Day (25Dec13) gave the channel its highest ratings ever when 2.47 million viewers tuned in to watch Matt Smith end his tenure as The Doctor and pass the torch to Peter Capaldi. The show beat the ratings record previously held by the Doctor Who's 50th anniversary episode, The Day of The Doctor.
Capaldi's introduction as the 13th Doctor was the most-watched TV moment of Christmas Day in the U.K., as over 10 million fans tuned in to watch.
As we draw closer and closer to the Christmas Special "The Time of the Doctor," we inch towards Eleven's regeneration into Twelve (this frightening thought is almost enough to make you wish away Christmas – no offense to Mr. Capaldi of course; we've just grown really attached to Matt Smith). While regenerations are what have kept the show alive so long, it sure makes for a little heartbreak to have your favorite character essentially die every few years. It's a tough pill to swallow.
Like his ten predecessors, Matt Smith managed to put his own stamp on the Doctor: his sunny, at times childlike, persona belies an underlying darkness, which makes for a fascinating take on an already-fascinating character. We're certainly going to miss the Eleventh Doctor, and here are a few reasons why:
* He might just be unbeatable in terms of impassioned monologues. Case in point:
And that's the visual side of things. For an adorable refresher of the actual words, we'll just leave this here:
* I wear a _____ now; ______ are cool. A fun catchphrase; one that is sure to be missed.
* Even with all the fun and whimsy, Smith could also break your heart. Remember when the Ponds were taken by the angels? Or when he thought he got stuck on the wrong side of the Big Bang (2)?
* We'll always love the Doctor/Craig bromance.
(Almost as much as they love each other)
* His flailing arms-River Song kisses were pretty hilarious.
* Though, if we're remembering correctly, his Rory kiss was flail-free.
* In fact, he kind of has great chemistry with everybody, especially Ten (weren't Matt Smith and David Tennant great together in "The Day of the Doctor?"), Clara (love the flirtatious witty banter), and Amy (ditto).
* Watching him fight with himself in "A Nightmare in Silver" was kind of jaw-dropping.
(Kind of like an evil version of this:)
* Two words: giraffe dancing.
Now, the idea of compiling a list of Matt Smith's best moments as the Eleventh Doctor was actually quite daunting: there are just so many, it's almost overwhelming (in a good way, of course). With that disclaimer in mind, feel free to share your favorite scenes/snippets/character traits in the comments!
The Doctor will regenerate on Christmas Day in Doctor Who's annual holiday special, and the fans aren't the only sad pandas losing Eleven. Clara Oswald (Jenna Coleman) will be the first companion since Billie Piper's Rose to have to get used to a new Time Lord face. (Friendly reminder that the Tenth Doctor dies alone. Happy holidays!) When Christopher Eccleston morphs into David Tennant in the first modern series finale, she is, to put it mildly, skeptical. Even when he proves to her that he is "the same man, always," she isn't sure he'd still want her along. But Clara's got an advantage. Perhaps she won't be as blindsided as her blond predecessor.Don't forget that in "The Name of the Doctor", Clara jumps into the Doctor's timestream to save him from The Great Intelligence. Over, and over, and over again. In all of his incarnations. We know that Oswin the souffle baker and Clara the governess don't have any memory of this, but at least modern-day Clara has some understanding of the regeneration concept.And then there was the 50th Anniversary special, where Clara comes face-to-face with three Doctors at once. She's pretty cool with the whole thing, though clearly Eleven is the Doctor she considers to be hers. She treats the War Doctor (John Hurt) like a friendly uncle and Ten like a particularly flirty friend visiting from out of town. Coleman and Matt Smith have settled in to their chemistry as believable best friends. Whatever Time Lord physiology knowledge Clara has up on her fellow companions, she is still losing someone.
On the other hand, we can't wait to see how the interplay between Clara and our new Doctor, Peter Capaldi develops. The reason that Doctor Who is still going 50 years strong is that it continually, by its very nature, reinvents itself. Clara, like the rest of us, will just have to roll with the punches.
On television, sometimes the holidays can get a little wacky. You might not be looking forward to sitting down with your extended family for the holidays, but at least you won’t have to deal with an alien invasion or the annual airing of grievances.
In fact, these wacky TV traditions make us appreciate our own crazy clans. Here are five weird holiday traditions to make your own family seem downright normal this winter season.
Festivus Perhaps one of the best and weirdest alternative holiday traditions comes to us courtesy of the sitcom Seinfeld. Created as secular backlash to the commercialization of Christmas by George Costanza's father, Festivus has everything you could ever want in a holiday. That is, if what you want in a holiday is an unadorned aluminum pole, a wrestling match, and your whole family to point out how you failed them in the previous year.
ChrismukkahIn an early episode of the Southern California soap The O.C. Seth Cohen explains to his newly adopted brother how he celebrates the holidays. Since his mother is a gentile and his father is Jewish, Seth merged both Christmas and Hanukkah into one super-holiday. After the episode aired, Chrismukkah soon took on a life of it’s own. Now kids from multi-religious families don’t have to pick one religious holiday, they can just combine them!
Wookie Life DayThe Star Wars Christmas special has become infamous; it’s so bad George Lucas wants to personally destroy every available copy. The special revolves around Chewbacca and his family trying to return to their home planet to celebrate “Life Day.” See below for some examples of how truly strange the special was.
Alien Invasion There’s nothing like a little alien invasion to get the new year started out right. At least that’s the way it seems on Doctor Who, which airs a special episode on Christmas every year. The Christmas special is usually a big event in the Doctor Who universe, and this year’s special will see current Doctor Matt Smith regenerate into new Doctor Peter Capldi. But in the Who universe, Christmas is usually the exact moment Britain is attacked by aliens. That might take a bit of cheer out of the holiday season.
LudachristmasWhile Kenneth the Page might have tried to teach the writers on 30 Rock an important message about the true meaning of Christmas, they seemed much more interested in celebrating their annual “Ludachristmas” holiday bash. Unfortunately Kenneth’s message falls on deaf ears, and the writers decide to cut down the Rockefeller tree instead of throwing a riotous party. Not sure that’s the upgrade Kenneth was hoping for.
What’s your favorite weird TV holiday tradition? Do you celebrate Festivus or Chrismukkah? Share in the comments!