Legendary Doctor Who Director Derek Martinus Passes Away

Derek

Derek Martinus has already gone down in Doctor Who history as one of the most important directors the series has ever had. Just take a look at his selected resume . The Tenth Planet, The Evil Of The Daleks and Spearhead From Space. Those are some supremely impressive stories. He was in on Hartnell’s last story, directing the first ever regeneration, and then worked the other side of the situation, helming Pertwee’s debut. That feat made him the first Doctor Who director to use colour. And in between? Evil, arguably one of the greatest Dalek stories of all time and The Ice Warriors. Galaxy 4 was his only other Doctor Who contribution, but even that long neglected story has gained some more fame and appreciation over the past couple years with the return of Episode 3, Air Lock.

Though we will remember him for his contributions to Doctor Who, he did plenty of other shows including Z-Cars and Blake 7, directing until he retired in 1985. He passed away today at the age of 82. We send our condolences to his family.

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The Keeper Of The Flame

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The news swept across the internet this evening. Doctorwhoworldwide.com is coming back. After weeks of no contact, someone was finally able to get some information regarding  Michael East the owner/editor. There’s no strict timeline, but DWW is going to be coming back online over the next couple of weeks and with it The Panopticon, the forum that many of us know and love.

So where does that leave us? For the past two weeks I have been working hard, getting the news, rumours and opinions out as fast as possible. Don’t forget about the omnirumour updates. It hasn’t always been easy, but it has been fun. And I don’t plan on stopping now. I may have just been the keeper of the flame, but I’m not about to hand back the torch. In the past 5 days this site has had 1650 views. No, that’s not monumental, but it is still pretty awesome. Thanks to everyone for your support, and I hope you will stick with me. As a friend advised me earlier today, there’s a lot of internet out there. Room enough for another Doctor Who site.

Mark Gatiss to write two episodes of who

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The writer behind such episodes as  The Crimson Horror, Night Terrors and Cold War has confirmed that he’s signed on to pen two more. After rampant twitter speculation as to which two he would do, he came out with the following:

To clarify. I’ve been commissioned to write two episodes of ‘Doctor Who’. That doesn’t mean they’ll both necessarily be in this season.

— Mark Gatiss(@Markgatiss) March 27, 2014

So, do we take that to mean one each, or maybe two next year? Who knows. I’m sure we will get more details as the premiere for Series 8  gets closer.

4th Doctor Lego submission needs your help

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By now just about everyone has seen the Lego CUUSOO Doctor Who submission that has managed the 10,000 supporters needed to make it on to the second stage. But there are plenty more great submissions out there. Fan of the new series? Well there’s a cool Tennant tardis set that can use your help. For us fans of the classic show there are less to chose from. Here is my personal favourite, from CreatorBen we get a 4th Doctor set with a classic tardis interior (roundels!), K-9, Davros and Dalek. Unfortunately it is a long way from where it needs to be. A long, long way. So, let’s help out an underdog here, pop on over and give it some support. If only for the roundels. If anyone out there has any Troughton submissions, I would love to see and support them!

Feels just like yesterday

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It’s been 9 years since Doctor Who made its triumphant return to our screens. For those of us who watched the old show, that 16 year gap was agony. We welcomed the return and all the new fans who joined the story with Rose.

I remember the day well. The BBC Doctor Who site said “Sit down. Put down your cup of tea. It’s coming back. On BBC One”. And 18 months later we had something we now call “New Who”. I have issues with some of Russell T. Davis’ writing, but I will always be grateful that he believed in the show, persevering, fighting with execs, making the hard choices that made it such a huge hit. He brought it back just different enough to be successful, by some measures more successful than ever, but still very recognizable to us long term fans. I have no doubt that the man fighting the Slitheen is absolutely the man who fought the Cybermen on Telos and the Wirrn on Space Station Nerva

The new series is by most measure far superior to the classic. The budget is huge, the special effects are great, the characters more well developed and scripts more emotional. Having said that, there is definitely a charm to the classic series. If you’ve only seen the last 3 Doctors, I encourage you to drop everything and go watch Ark in Space. t have to go all the way back to An Unearthly Child, but maybe Rose? Or even The Eleventh Hour would be a good place to pick up the action.  I especially love that the new series has gone through 3 leading men, with a 4th filming now. And 2 producers and, depending who you count, 5 companions. It’s shown itself to be bigger than any one man. It owes its renewed existence to RTD but we have moved on from him. And love him or hate him, Steven Moffatt has put his own stamp on the series, his version of things, and no doubt his successor will do the same. People will naturally come and go, viewers change as often as the show. This is how it survives. We could have shut it all down when Ian and Barbara left. Or when Rose said goodbye. But we didn’t. It changes, evolves and thrives. That’s why each generation has their very own Doctor. We’ll be heartbroken when they leave, but forget them by the time the new one’s closing credits roll. As it should be.

Happy Birthday Patrick

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It was 94 years ago today, March 25, that Patrick Troughton was born. Pat has been my favourite Doctor for many years and the return of Enemy Of The World and Web Of Fear has only strengthened my love of the 2nd Doctor. I will take this opportunity to say thanks for everything Pat and it’s a shame that you aren’t still with us. If there is any justice in the world, the TV Gods will make the omnirumour turn out to be true, or at least mostly true, and we will get to see more of your genius.

Missing Episode Leads at the M&S Cafe?

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The Omnirumour. A ray of light leading to an Aladdin’s cave of glinting silvery treasure. Devourer of forum pages. Igniter of conflicts that if enacted in real life would make Game of Thrones look like a pillow fight.

It’s profoundly changed online fandom. On one hand, a great community of like minded souls has sprung up – friendly and open, with some good friendships being forged over borders and time zones. On the other, there’s a worrying amount of flame wars and trolling going on. Not to mention an overall oppressive atmosphere on certain forums, and some elaborate hoaxes. But hey ho, it wouldn’t be Doctor Who fandom if somebody wasn’t being a tool about it.

Every scrap of info or potential lead, no matter how unlikely it may seem, has been pored over in microscopic detail. We want to know. We’re excited. But, until some sort of an announcement comes (fingers crossed), all we can do is continue to look at the clues, and we’ve already torn the internet into so many shreds in our search for the truth that it’s a wonder it’s not collapsed.

Let me tell you a story, a story I haven’t shared up to now.

A couple of months ago, after some lengthy indecision about where to have lunch, my girlfriend Lesley and I ended up at a table in the upstairs café of our local Marks and Spencer. We were very hungry (our indecision often results in this).

She chose a healthy option. I didn’t. As we wolfed down our lunch and talked between bites, I noticed a man sat in the corner, tallish, and oddly familiar looking. Did I know him? If I did, where did I know him from? Work? Someone else’s work?

Hold on. I don’t know him. I do know him from being interviewed on TV by Lizo Mzimba though. That looks like…. Phil Morris!

What do I read into this? If that’s him, he’s at least 500 miles out of his way (I live on the south coast, and have an ex from Liverpool, trust me, I know), maybe there’s an episode lead in Dorset?!? He’s having a bacon bagel. Bacon bagels are round. Film cans are round!! Is this a sign?!?

I jest, but whoever this guy was, he looked enough like everyone’s favourite secretive globe-trotting episode hunter to make me stare at him with one eye for a good couple of minutes whilst maintaining eye contact and conversation with Lesley (risking going cross-eyed in the process).

Luckily he didn’t see me, as I would have looked somewhat deranged. My girlfriend didn’t notice my cross eyed basilisk gaze either, which was a relief. I didn’t fancy explaining that I’d spent so long boring holes in forums and twitter over the last few months that I was starting to believe episode hunters were among us, and……. tucking into a nice bacon roll in the corner of England’s favourite Penny Bazaar. Questions might have been asked about our relationship.

“You haven’t changed, still finding menace in your own shadow…”

There’s not really a message here, beyond “Do not stare at strange men in cafes”. I’m sure good times are still coming. The speculation is still great fun. But, if you do see Phil Morris, and he is a) Actually Phil Morris and b) Eating a Bagel, don’t snatch it out of his hand, it’s not a film can, it’s a bagel. And I hope he enjoys his bagel.

 

The preceding is a humorous account and not intended to offend anyone, even those who hate bagels. The real Phil Morris was not seen anywhere near the vicinity of M&S.