Dalek military strategies have never exactly been what you’d call subtle. They’re less about martial brilliance and more about just blasting the shit out of everything while screaming at the top of whatever passes for their lungs. I’m guessing there aren’t a lot of Dalek spies out there, or at least if there were, they were probably a lot more Inspector Clouseau than James Bond. When you’re just a big alien pepper mill, donning a wig and insisting, “UNHAND ME, I AM THE BELGIAN AMBASSADOR!” probably isn’t going to get you very far. Case in point, the accompanying fan art, which envisions the Daleks cunningly disguised as their greatest enemy, complete with cute little scarves and fezzes and celery stalks. All that’s missing is an “I AM THE ONCOMING STORM” nametag.
Doctor Who turned 50 last November, an unprecedented run that has seen 12 different actors play the time-hopping alien protagonist (more, if you count the Peter Cushing movies or the assorted non-canonical sketches and specials). Part of the key to the show’s success and longevity is that very fact that the Doctor can change his face, regenerating from one leading man to the next and allowing each new actor to put his own unique spin on the character. But apparently the run of arguably the most popular modern Doctor was considered such a success that the BBC seriously considered the possibility that they’d have to cancel the show when he left, because who could follow him? (The answer, of course, was that Who could follow him…)
Last week we learned that Doctor Who will be returning for its eighth modern season this August, but the brief teaser didn’t give us much to go on. As we inch closer to the show’s season premiere, there are, however, some intriguing rumors making the rounds, including the possibility of more companions taking up residence in the TARDIS and a brain-twisting idea that could somehow, within the narrative, address the fact that Twelfth Doctor actor Peter Capaldi has already appeared in the Who-niverse twice as other characters.
First, the companions. Clara (Jenna Coleman) is obviously returning, but there have also been rumors that actor Samuel Anderson, who is playing a recurring character named Danny Pink, will be traveling with the Doctor as a companion. Pink is a teacher at Coal Hill School, the same place where Clara is on the teaching staff. And of course long-time Who fans will recall that Coal Hill played a big part in the very first Doctor Who story: the Doctor’s first companions, Ian and Barbara, both taught at Coal Hill, where the Doctor’s “granddaughter” Susan had been attending school while they were on Earth. But if Danny Pink is to be a new companion, he might not be the only one.
Back in December, with the annual Doctor Who Christmas special, we got our first glimpse at Peter Capaldi’s new Time Lord. We knew that season eight, which will reportedly be Capaldi’s only go as the venerable time travelling alien, would begin latter this year, but there was no word on when. While there still isn’t a specific date, this new teaser greatly narrows down the possibilities. The most recent Time Lord, Matt Smith, has also indicated that he’s down to return to the franchise pretty much whenever the phone rings.
According to this quick video released by the BBC, Capaldi’s reign will kick off this August. It doesn’t get any more exact than that, but considering that the show usually airs on Saturdays, and that there are only five of that particular day of the week in that month, there aren’t all that many options for a premiere.
Back in March we first reported on a pair of upcoming Doctor Who comic series slated to debut this summer. They’ll be the first Who projects coming out of the franchise’s new comic-book home at Titan Comics (IDW Publishing previously held the Who license for years). The good news for those who are still missing David Tennant and/or Matt Smith’s versions of the Doctor should be pleased, as both the Tenth and Eleventh incarnations of the Doctor will be getting ongoing series exploring previously untold adventures. Now we’ve got a bit more info about the two series, including details about the new companions who will be moving into the TARDIS.
One of the joys of science fiction is seeing fan favorite actors stick with the genre across different projects. Arnold Schwarzenegger cemented his sci-fi legacy with iconic roles in Predator, Total Recall, and of course the Terminator series. For Alan Taylor’s currently-in-production Terminator: Genesis, Schwarzenegger may share the screen with none other than Doctor Who. Or, at least the eleventh incarnation of him, as Paramount and Skydance Productions have added British actor Matt Smith to the quasi-sequel. They’ve got to let him wear a bowtie, right?
It’s hard to think of someone better to bring into a time travelling adventure than someone who was once a proper Time Lord. Unfortunately, Paramount and Skydance are being cagey with Smith’s character specifics, describing him only as “a new character with a strong connection to John Connor.” Which, at this point in the redevelopment of this central storyline, could mean just about anything. Is he the friendly resistance mail carrier? Will the somewhat svelte actor play a badass soldier of some kind? Maybe a half-brother that John never knew about? I could keep this hypothetical train chugging all day long.