‘The Universe Doesn’t Care’

Oh, Doctor, you’ve really taken the loss of companions Amy and Rory to heart, haven’t you? Your dejected, depressed persona now just sees a dark and uncaring existence where once you saw light and life and adventure…

In this new clip from next week’s DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, “The Snowmen,” Strax (Dan Starkey) tries to convince the Doctor (Matt Smith) to investigate the fresh alien snow that has fallen on Victorian London. Only… when has the Doctor ever needed to be convinced to investigate something otherworldly? Or as fun as snow – think of the snowballs!

“The Snowmen” airs Dec. 25 at 9 p.m. on BBC America.

Matt Smith Spills on British TV

The 11th Doctor, Matt Smith, is never less than charming whenever he is interviewed about DOCTOR WHO, and this bit, from the show This Morning, is Matt at his best. I’m not sure any serving Doctor since Tom Baker has been a better ambassador for the show.

In addition to flogging next week’s Christmas Special, “The Snowmen,” Matt covers quite a bit of ground, including why he incorporated liberal amounts of Clouseau, Blackadder and Frank Spencer into the Doctor, his Mum,  the fans (“I think people mistake craziness for enthusiasm”), his “TARDIS boots,” the new TARDIS interior (“space IKEA”), what’s written on that Type 40 plaque in the console room – and hints about the monster in one of the upcoming back eight episodes!

Definitely worth watching. Bonus: The presenters mention the 50th anniversary but do not ask Matt when he’s going to leave the role! Kudos!

The Origin of Madame Vastra and Jenny

To help us make it down the home stretch until the DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, the BBC has released another minisode prequel to “The Snowmen,” this one called “Vastra Investigates.” Written by Steven Moffat , it’s not really an investigation, but something so much better: the secret origin of Vastra (Neve McIntosh) and Jenny (Catrin Stewart)!

We also learn that Strax (Dan Starkey) is relatively new to the crime-fighting team – but is he the same Strax we met in “A Good Man Goes to War,” or an earlier clone?

Vastra telling Jenny not to expect help from the Doctor (Matt Smith) because, “Heartbreak is a burden to us all; pity the man with two,” was quite sad.  So from this and “The Great Detective minisode, we can deduce that the Doctor, soul-sick over the deaths of his friends Amy and Rory, answered Vastra’s summons, but refused to help with her investigations. He parks the TARDIS there in Victorian London and refuses to come out. Sort of a “Do not open until Xmas” situation.

“The Snowmen” premieres at 9 p.m. on Christmas Day on BBC America.

Most Interesting DOCTOR WHO Clip Yet

At least for the Christmas Special, this is the most informative trailer yet released. As short as it is, most of the scenes are brand-new, we hear Sir Ian McKellen’s voice in character (Minor spoiler: It’s awesome!), and we get a sense of how Jenna-Louise Coleman’s Clara behaves.

My favorite part was the bit about Clara dragging the Doctor (Matt Smith) by the hand. (“That’s always me!” Hilarious.) From all the talk of snow, one might expect the episode’s logline to be “Winter Is Coming” — but apparently that one is already taken.

From this and all the other clips and photos seen so far, it would appear that Richard E. Grant does nothing but sneer in this episode; he’s a better actor than that. I really like the music used in this clip; is it from the episode?

DOCTOR WHO’s Xmas present arrives in America at 9 p.m. on BBC America on Christmas Day.

The TARDIS Gets a New Interior!

tardistopIn addition to introducing a new companion, the DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, “The Snowmen,” will see the debut of a new console room in the TARDIS!

The new set was designed by production designer Michael Pickwoad, and the BBC have released this teaser photo — which appears to be the top of the main console. This will be the TARDIS interior for the Doctor and Clara at least through the back eight episodes of series seven in 2013.

This design — from what I can see of it — certainly is a departure from the Doctor’s current “desktop.” And it looks like the central console will be well-lit, at least. All that Gallifreyan writing is interesting, but I think there’s too much of it, and it’s too big.

In the words of the 11th Doctor (Matt Smith) himself, “I don’t like it.” But perhaps it will grow on me. Like coral.

Xmas Surprise! Guess WHO is Voicing the Snowmen?

If you weren’t already climbing the walls in anticipation of the DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, this news should drive you over the top: Sir Ian McKellen will be providing the voices for the titular monsters in “The Snowmen.”

I know, right? Who even thought the snowmen would talk, let alone with the imperious tones of Magneto and Gandalf the Grey/White? I can’t wait to hear what McKellan does with the role(s).

In the meantime, here are some more cool new photos from the Dec. 25 show:


Hanky-Panky in the TARDIS… With Clara?

ClaraDoctorKissThe DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special (“The Snowmen”) is closing in fast, and with Amy and Rory dead and buried, it’s time for a (pretty) new face. And, apparently, time for some mistletoe, if the photos at left are anything to go by!

We know that come Yuletide, in the wake of the loss of his best friends, the Doctor (Matt Smith) will be all dark and mopey and sad and angsty and withdrawn from the universe. (Not even his friends Madame Vastra, Jenny and Strax can entice him into playing the Great Detective with the promise of adventure.) However, into his life steps a new assistant (played by Jenna-Louise Coleman), one who shakes him out of his doldrums and convinces him to travel through space and time once more.  But how does she do it?

Matt hinted to Britain’s Radio Times that the Doctor’s motivations might just be a little risqué for a married man! Matt explained:

“What’s interesting with a new companion is that it changes the way he is and affects his personality. I think, in one way or another, the Doctor is always attracted to his companion and he’s certainly taken by this striking young lady…

The fall of the Ponds had a grave effect on the man. I think he’s quite lonely and removed from the universe and not really as engaged as he was, at his best with Amy and Rory.

Handily, he meets a jaunty new companion, a hot chick…”

Hmmm, what might River Song have to say about the Doctor gallivanting about the universe with a pretty young thing batting her eyelashes at him while he swoons? We’ll have to wait until the second half of the season, this spring.

What do you think? Is it too soon for the Doctor to have his head turned by another assistant? Should the ancient rule about “No hanky-panky in the TARDIS” be kept in place?

DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special Poster

Remember when show-runner Steven Moffat promised that every episode of series seven would feel like its own wide-screen movie? Well, that tradition continues, as here we have the latest movie poster, this for episode six, the traditional Christmas Special, “The Snowmen.”

I like several aspects of this design — not least of which is Jenna-Louise Coleman’s artfully concealed cleavage — including the heroic Doctor wearing a new hat, the sense of height and the tiny teeth in the snowflakes, but I don’t fancy the distinct lack of… well, snowmen. What’s up with that?
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More on the DOCTOR WHO Xmas Special!

This year’s 90-minute special Christmas episode of DOCTOR WHO, called “The Snowmen,” looks really fun and exciting – and a couple of experts on the matter have some hints to drop:

Show-runner Steven Moffat said:

“The Doctor at Christmas is one of my favorite things – but this year it’s different. He’s lost Amy and Rory to the Weeping Angels, and he’s not in a good place; in fact, he’s Scrooge. He’s withdrawn from the world and no longer cares what happens to it. So when all of humanity hangs in the balance, can anyone persuade a tired and heartbroken Doctor that it’s time to return to the good fight? Enter Jenna-Louise Coleman…”

I cannot tell you how happy I am that the Doctor (Matt Smith) really suffers in the wake of the loss of his friends. Not that I’m trying to be sadistic, you understand, but such a momentous change has to have repercussions. On a show like this, Moffat easily could have picked up the story 300 years later, with the Doctor’s hearts healed from the trauma. I’m looking forward to see how the Doctor changes between now and the end of the season.
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New DOCTOR WHO Minisode and Trailer!

In case you didn’t get to see the DOCTOR WHO content from last night’s BBC Children in Need telethon, I bring you a look at the special prelude to the Christmas story and the trailer for the Xmas episode itself.

I must confess to being a little bit disappointed by the minisode, “The Great Detective,” only in the sense that the Doctor  does not play much of a role in it. It’s funny and entertaining, but left me wanting more. The trailer for the Christmas story, however, is just as awesome as one would hope…

Here is the minisode, “The Great Detective”:

And now the first Xmas trailer:


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