From the moment anyone first heard about Doctor Who’s upcoming 50th anniversary episode, one of the first questions anyone thought to ask was, “Which Doctors will be involved?” It’s hardly unprecedented for the various actors who have played the legendary Time Lord over the years to share the screen in a mutual adventure. It’s happened before in inventively named serials such as The Three Doctors and The Five Doctors. It has yet, however, to happen in the “modern” incarnation of the show that kicked off with Christopher Eccleston’s tenure. A 50th anniversary episode seems like a perfect excuse to reunite Doctors both old and new in an epic adventure, but so far only Tenth Doctor David Tennant has been confirmed to be sharing the screen with the Eleventh, Matt Smith. That leaves surviving former Doctor actors Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, and Paul McGann out in the cold. But now Davison is claiming that he does have some sort of involvement in the 50th anniversary, claiming also to have a copy of the script for the special episode “which has got my name embossed across it.” But does that really mean he’ll be putting in an appearance in “The Day of the Doctor?”
Katee Sackhoff entered the pantheon of science fiction icons with her performance as Kara “Starbuck” Thrace in Ron Moore’s 2004 Battlestar Galactica reboot series. She joined the sci-pantheon alongside unforgettable characters like Star Trek’s James T. Kirk, Babylon 5’s G’Kar, and Doctor Who’s Doctor (take your pick which one). Now she’s embracing that science fiction heritage in a very geeky photoshoot for, well, Geek Magazine. Check it out above to see Sackhoff channeling Kirk and Tom Baker’s Doctor, not to mention cozying up to a surprisingly cuddly Dalek.
The secrecy surrounding Doctor Who’s much-anticipated 50th anniversary episode has been slowly lifting over the past year. After rumors piled upon rumors, we eventually learned that former Who actors David Tennant and Billie Piper were going to return as the Tenth Doctor and Rose Tyler, respectively. We learned that John Hurt had a role, and eventually the shocking news of just who (ahem) he was playing. Now we can tick off one more bit of important info: the episode’s name. As seen in the newly released poster above, the 50th anniversary episode will be titled “The Day of the Doctor.”
WARNING: SPOILERS AND SPECULATION BELOW!
One of the reasons why Doctor Who has survived and thrived for 50 years comes down to one of the more clever narrative conceits in science fiction history: the Time Lord’s ability to regenerate. Within the fiction of the show, it allows the character of the Doctor to evolve and change as the show carries on, revealing different elements of his persona. But die-hard Who fans know that the concept wasn’t in place at the beginning of the show, and in fact a newly discovered copy of the script for William Hartnell’s final episode reveals just how late in the day his regeneration was added.
A draft script for the 1966 serial “The Tenth Planet” was recently discovered in the attic of former Who writer Kip Pedler, unearthed by author Michael Steely, who is writing a biography of Pedler. In addition to being the final adventure for Hartnell’s First Doctor, “The Tenth Planet” also introduced the iconic Who baddies the Cybermen. After discovering the “Tenth Planet” draft, along with several other scripts, Steely realized “it was the first draft [script editor and co-writer] Gerry Davis prepared when Kit fell ill in June 1966.”
This November is going to be a big one for Doctor Who fans. The much-anticipated, no doubt epic 50th anniversary episode premieres on November 23. That same month will see the airing of An Adventure in Space and Time, a TV movie about the origins and making of Doctor Who, starring Harry Potter’s David Bradley as the spitting image of First Doctor William Hartnell. Now Who fans can add another bullet point to their list of reasons “Why November 2013 Will Be Awesome.” On November 5, BBC Home Entertainment will release the Doctor Who: Series 1 – 7 Limited Edition Blu-ray Giftset.
The set will collect the adventures of the three most recent Doctors: Christopher Eccleston’s Ninth Doctor, David Tennant’s Tenth, and Matt Smith’s Eleventh. More importantly, seasons 1 – 4 have been remastered into full 1080p high definition, which should be a real treat since those seasons had previously only been available on standard DVDs. The set will also include the standalone specials that wrapped up Tennant’s tenure as the Doctor.
All the bonus features from the earlier releases will be included in the set, along with a new Blu-ray disk with three new-to-Blu-ray specials:
All the Doctor Who buzz of late has been focused on the 50th anniversary episode in November and the Christmas special that will introduce the Twelfth (or possibly Thirteenth) Doctor, played by Peter Capaldi. But once we’ve consumed those, when will we get to dive into the new Doctor’s ongoing adventures? Unfortunately, we’ll once again have a long wait, because the show’s eighth season isn’t set to premiere until Fall 2014.
Showrunner Steven Moffat earned a place on the Guardian’s “Media 100” list, which is a sort of who’s who of “the most powerful people in television, radio, newspapers, magazines, digital media, media business, advertising, marketing & PR.” Moffat lands at the #87 entry, which includes the following tidbit:
Doctor Who may not be quite the force it was when it returned with Christopher Eccleston and in its David Tennant heyday in the UK, but has a growing audience in the US on cable channel BBC America.
It will not return next year until the autumn, giving it plenty of time to recharge batteries. And what better way to do that than with a new Doctor?