The McGann Era

September 29th, 2013

  In 2005 the Doctor changed. For Doctor Who‘s new audience this meant little to nothing, while for a likely majority of the old series’ fans the casting of Christopher Eccleston merely meant the continuation of what had always been – the inexorable restoration and reinvention of the series’ lead character. And yet,  even a year on, there were fans who clearly saw the seeds of this bold, new direction for Doctor Who and its hero in the brief TV tenure and its extended multimedia afterlife of the Eighth Doctor.

It’s not a bad achievement, really. Consider how the series and Doctor might have been interpreted had it lived on as novels and comic strips only after Spearhead from Space [no Master, no name Gallifrey, no Sontarans, no Sarah Jane] or Robot [no Davros, Leela, K9, Romanas or Hinchcliffe/Holmes or Williams/Adams eras ], let alone The Twin Dilemma or Time and the Rani in their respective portrayals of the Doctor. Doctor Who the TV Movie may in its eighty-nine minutes say little new about the series beyond a hastily papered-over half-human parentage and a squirmed-at Doctor-companion kiss, but few would argue that its version of the Doctor, and particularly its choice of leading man, was absolutely perfect.

This perhaps ought to be surprising; Doctor Who the TV movie is itself the product of mixed parentage, being a US production with UK and US names behind it. Its pitch at the renegade Time Lord is the closest the series had come to casting the Doctor as an Englishman Abroad – novelty factor included, Remington Steele in a TARDIS. Add to that the Doctor’s own ensemble being a collision of sartorial nods to archetypes from both countries [the Byronic antihero, the Wild West gunslinger] and the resulting impact and the longevity of its half-life is quite remarkable.

The Eighth Doctor was, more than any other incarnation, designed and extended by committee. Beyond the TV Movie the fan writers who took up the baton for the most part (some older hands – Dicks and Peel, excepted) invested a lot of their impressions of Paul McGann’s Doctor, rather than his predecessors, into their continuations; and so we know that in preparing their BBC Book Vampire Science Jon Blum and Kate Orman watched as many McGann films and programmes as they could to retain his mannerisms in their prose, while in Endgame on Alan Barnes seeded his comic strip Eighth Doctor with nods to the likes of Withnail & I. The success of the TV Movie in the UK is well enough known (it wasn’t actually a flop in the US, either, it simply wasn’t the remarkable success needed to become a series), but it’s as much a sign of good faith in Paul McGann’s role in the movie that his caretaker creators from 1996 to 2005 took great pains to keep his interpretation of the Doctor intact.

And yet, 2005 is not where the Eighth Doctor’s story ends; the Eighth Doctor’s story is still being written. We know that it does of course have an end somewhere, and that this may involve the Time War. Thanks to Big Finish and the continued involvement of Paul McGann himself we have an audio and visual acknowledgement of the Eighth Doctor’s evolution  leading up to that catastrophe, the stripping away of his carefree, Romantic exterior to reveal a more desperate, death-haunted loner – perhaps an early indicator of the Ninth incarnation to come. And there’s more to tell and not be told, because the Eighth Doctor is still a largely unfilled page, available to be read and added to by new custodian creators while his legacy, the revived series, forges on.

“Humans,” the Doctor explains, are “always seeing patterns in things that aren’t there.” And so it is that the vivid impression cast by Paul McGann and his co-creators have allowed the ‘not there’ post-TV Movie life of the Eighth Doctor to continue, faithful indeed to the pattern set by eighty-nine miraculous minutes broadcast in 1996.

Zeus Plug retrospective: The Disappearing Doctor

September 23rd, 2013

In anticipation of the next ‘Eras’ feature, we present a reprint of the feature article of ‘Zeus Plug’ issue 7, ‘The Disappearing Doctor’, first published mid-2006...

   In November this year the Eighth Doctor will embark on a new series of adventures. Two, in fact, as around this time it’s anticipated that BBC Books will resume their run of Past Doctor Adventures, the Eighth Doctor being one of these now, of course. What does this mean? What could the potential impact be to the series and fandom in general? The answer to both questions is most likely and very sadly, ‘very little’. Ten years on from his debut, it is becoming increasingly evident that the Eighth Doctor is somewhat less than the sum of his many parts.

There are a few reasons for this. The series itself and fandom with it are in rude health – which is by no means a bad thing – we not only have a new series but two new Doctors, new stories and, bless them, new and young fans enjoying the show and giving it lovely lovely ratings. We’ve never had it so good – well, not for quite while. This ought to be good news for the old show as well as old Doctors. A further reason is that in its wilderness years the series may have been idle but fandom wasn’t. Licensed novels, the comic strips of DWM and Big Finish’s audio adventure series ensured and contributed severally to an ongoing chronology for many (and in some cases all) of the Doctor’s previous incarnations that not only broadened but to some degree challenged the traditional canon of Doctor Who. The series no longer had to be defined by the TV series first because while TV was no longer an option for new stories the new media was, and to some fans they were much more than mere adequate ‘make-dos’ – they were superior, worth following in their own right.

Here’s where the problem really started, because behind each of these new endeavours lay the impetus for profit – to follow the story you had to pay for its instalments, unlike the TV series which was, to all intents and purposes, freely available. In this way the series in its alternative media both grew and, curiously, shrank despite all efforts to remain in the public consciousness. Gary Russell interviewed in TSV in 1993 predicted a future for the series that involved a small Prisoner-sized hardcore fan base, and little else. The Eighth Doctor’s extended life came at the behest of these fans and their world. Written for fans, produced by fans, and tailored to the fan market, nobody could fault the dedication of the Doctor’s champions to keep the legend alive – but any marketer could tell you that such ‘cult’ audiences are not sustainable. Is there anything fans loathe more than ‘fan creators’? Here are the peccadilloes of the ‘enthusiast’ made flesh: contemporary pastiche and vaguely-obscured tie-ins, pop culture references, multi-Doctor stories, story arcs, companion-angst, the so-called ‘crack baby’ syndrome of preachy watered-down social comment shoe-horned into an alien invasion story. The most excessive fan fiction works itself into niches within niches, and as it did so it became subject to the whims of fandom – a select audience who had their own relationship with the series and their own understanding of it – a sophisticated one, so that following anything new required the same understanding of canon and continuity. The result that spin-off media saw was that instead of reaching a new and wider audience, it merely served to alienate a lot of fans, and tighten the net around the faithful few.

Indeed, prior to the new series it is likely that fandom had shrunk. The fact that all three media presented the Eighth Doctor’s adventures as a detailed continuum meant that these new adventures were even less accessible to the casual buyer. They were all in their own way a pretty expensive way of following the Doctor’s adventures. In the front line of this new push for the fan dollar, the Eighth Doctor’s own continuity wasn’t consistent across the comic, the books and the audios – there was no need for there to be because there was no one body to regulate it. Even fandom warmed to the idea of divergent continuity, although it took them long enough. In all, these variant life spans for the Eighth Doctor would involve up to ten different companions, several ‘story arcs’ and a steady supply of fan dollars in order to be followed with any success outside of internet-based synopses – hardly a decent compromise but at least it was sort of free). The result is that the Eighth Doctor was kept alive but not whole. He is bound to several self-enclosed and separate continuities running parallel, and for the audios and books at least, these stories aren’t over yet.

Onscreen the Eighth Doctor is assuredly a growing irrelevance. In TV continuity he is isolated, marooned somewhere between Season 26 and the pre-Eccleston era ‘Time War’, of which we may or may not see anything. A good number of fans would believe that it is this event which remains the last hope of actually seeing the Eighth Doctor as portrayed in the TV movie in action on screen ever again. It could be a fitting and last hurrah for Paul McGann, and appears frequently on fan wish lists, but for the moment RTD has ruled out multi-Doctor stories, and there seems no need to realise the Time War in visual form for the moment if at all. With a mixed TV movie as his television legacy (ironically bound with best intentions to pre-existing continuity, half-humanness notwithstanding) this could be it for an incarnation that fandom largely took to heart and unwittingly ran into a series of cul de sacs. It’s a sad legacy, the one defined by and contained in merchandising. There’s every chance that Paul McGann’s return to radio (at least it’s free!) has been secured on the strength of it being of interest mainly to the series’ ‘old’ audience and therefore wouldn’t be the career-threatener its star was reluctant to attach himself to for a while. But the history of Doctor Who on radio is not a happy one, and it remains to be seen whether the efforts, expertise and talents of Big Finish (a star in descent itself, surely, against the new TV series) will help it on its way. Of all the TV Doctors I feel the Eighth got short-changed the most – even more so than the Sixth Doctor. Put simply, he was killed by best intentions. All promise, no closure for the daily press or documentary special. He remains something of a footnote to the non-fan; barely documented, briefly noted. Little wonder then that to many this incarnation has become in the words of the actor himself, the ‘George Lazenby’ of Doctor Who.


Fast Return – August 2013

September 22nd, 2013











…We can finally play this video. Woo!


Yeah. Well, here’s the thing. Right about now we did have plans to upload yet another enlightening video from the new generation of Doctor Who enthusiasts (are supposed to call them ‘enth-Who-viasts’ now? Search me) explaining the issue around Peter Capaldi’s casting and the dilemma it presents to what the series is supposed to be about – an exotic stranger who whisks viewer identification figures (i.e. age twenty-ish Western women) away for a romantic life in time and also space. It was a great video, possibly for some good reasons, but now we can’t upload it at all because wouldn’t you know it? said fangirl set the video to private shortly afterwards. And it could have explained So Much, as well. Boo!


You know, they say that everyone has a book in them. Some people have libraries in them, or multi-volume series in variant cover designs with individual dedication plates. I might have a pamphlet or two in me; it would explain my posture at least. But seeing as it’s the Anniversary Year it seems that everyone and, yes, their dog, has a Who-related book out to cash-in on mark this year of mass media communication. Why, not a month goes by on Gallifrey News Base without two things; yet another installment of the deathless jawcracker that is An Unending Series- sorry, that’s An Unearthly Series – the Origins of a TV Legend and the heart-stopping news that someone out there has just published part one of a new look at the history of Doctor Who in collectible teaspoons. Or another volume of recycled fan reviews. Or a behind-the-scenes glimpse at something. Or the massed opinions of people whose mass opinions you should read. Or a book about how Doctor Who isn’t just for ‘normal’ TV viewers anymore, it’s also picked up a significant following among the recently-deceased. Now, some of these books are, it must be said, very very good, and some are genuinely worth your eyeball leather. But in this year of 2013 the seemingly never-ending conveyor belt of new and revised title releases just has this man and his dog feeling like this:

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Or “erased from Doctor Who!!“, if you will. Last month in a breathtaking change from Stuff’s breathless coverage of PeterJacksondirectingWho!, the NZ Herald did some journalism ran an online poll asking readers who their favourite incarnation of the Doctor is/was (if you’re old). They even had an accompanying Photoshop filterisation of various publicity photos graphic for the textually-challenged, too. And of course, being a scientific survey, the resulting data omits Old Sixie from its Top Doctors score sheet. True, he fared an intergalactic ‘Nil Points’ in Eurovision style, but dammit  Zero is still a score, you heartless sods!!

The Missing Episodes thread is up to its twenty-fourth part now on Outpost Gallifrey, doggedly lumbering on like a Who-storical internet series in the face of disavowals and denials from the Beeb and episode hunters and restorers alike. Every week, the same faces, the same names, the same parsing of official statements and the same mad theories. We read this stuff so you don’t have to, you know.

Finally, a good sort.


The Lake of Mutations? A Force for Good? It may be closer than you think. Recently prime time identity-challenged social media affairs infotainment show Seven Sharp ran a story on Taupo’s Raoul Lealand, a man who, inspired by childhood memories and the chance find of a distinctive vacuum clearer part went and made his own operating Dalek , complete with water pistol and Cushing-styled dry powder fire extinguisher blaster functions. Uncynical, matter-of-fact, respectful and generous in its airtime to the charitable gentleman himself, this article tickled our ribs, warmed our hearts and made us proud to be Kiwi fans again. Reporter Hayden Jones even used Blam Blam Blam’s version of the Ron Grainer theme tune. Bravo Seven Sharp, and you legend, Mister Lealand!

And that’s our people last month.


The McCoy Era

August 16th, 2013

Like all of us, no Doctor is born fully-formed. The lifespan of a Time Lord’s incarnation is one marked with gradual change, his personality shaped either by encounters with adversaries old and new, or the shifting relationships between companions and colleagues. Off-screen, this change is brought about by show runners or (in the classic series) producers, script editors and in most instances on record at least, the lead actor himself. In the instance of Sylvester McCoy’s tenure this is certainly the case on record, and in the short lifespan of the Seventh Doctor, this change is probably the most abrupt yet; superficially a gear shift from quirky, bumbling tramp-clown to murmuring inter-dimensional schemer in the space of the season gap between 1987 and 1988. As the Doctor says in Delta and the Bannermen there may indeed be “many a slap between a cup and a lap”, but the radical shift in tone that would usher in its follow-up bar one, Season Twenty-Five’s opener Remembrance of the Daleks, would also firmly establish for many fans the definitive Seventh Doctor, fittingly set against his oldest and deadliest foes.

We attribute much of this change to the popularly-termed ‘Cartmel Masterplan’, a loose set of threads guiding the Seventh Doctor through his remaining eight UK-made stories and, via Masterplan alumni Andrew Cartmel, Ben Aaronovitch and Marc Platt, into Virgin’s New Adventures as well.  As the era of Sylvester McCoy also marked a coming-of-age of would-be future fan writers in the New Adventures, it’s important too to see where they took their cues from in McCoy’s televised stories. To this end, perhaps more weight has been added to some spurious material than was initially intended (for example, Delta’s Stratocaster scene, championed in The Discontinuity Guide as a sort of proto-Cornellian signifier; not to mention the infamous deleted scenes from Remembrance) and, I‘d argue, maybe too much was heaped also on Dragonfire as an Ace story. And yet, from these simple moments, a great and diverse run of novels sprang, solidifying the form of an incarnation which is still being portrayed in Big Finish audios to this day, the Seventh Doctor now a master of manipulation, setting even his next incarnation’s future up ahead for him before his own time runs out.

This piece, however, is not about those stories, or what followed the TV series and its cancellation, but what came before. The passage of time has, it seems, been a little less kind to the era of Sylvester McCoy, with Twenty-first Century eyes casting unforgiving appraisals upon its trappings of Eighties Who; the raucous synthetic soundtracks, video format and shrill theme music. Once the top cat of DWM surveys, the Seventh Doctor now languishes with his predecessor in the lower leagues, and yet this reversal of fortune can be a useful thing in itself. Twenty-five years on from Remembrance of the Daleks and all it seeded those New Adventures are not so easily come by, and their recasting of the Seventh Doctor is less ubiquitous outside a Big Finish subscription. Inadvertently, the consigning of Virgin’s fan baton to deeds past has forced a review of the Seventh Doctor as a screen incarnation first and foremost, and despite DWM polls and forum drubbings on balance that’s really not a bad place to start at all. There are stories within the McCoy Era – The Greatest Show in the GalaxyBattlefieldGhost LightSurvivalThe Curse of FenricThe Happiness Patrol, which have the capacity still to surprise and intrigue with this mercurial incarnation, and which are now stripped of the off-screen series and their adherence to repeated memes. Granted new eyes, the brave and bold conceits of the Cartmel and, indeed, the McCoy Era, are available once more to be experienced.



A New Age

August 7th, 2013

And so, a new Doctor. In less than six months, another incarnation will spring from the amber flames of Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor, and our favourite Time Lord will be physically and emotionally reborn.

The casting of Peter Capaldi the past weekend has certainly provided a lot of press, a lot of fan conversation. By far it seems the greatest issue fandom is currently wrestling over is the perceived age of the Doctor – that is to say (if it ever needed saying), Capaldi’s actual age, 55. Capaldi is, as has been pointed out variously, the same age as William Hartnell was when he assumed the mantle of Doctor and defined the character in doing so. The Doctor has always been an old man, but we live in a time when age – youth in particular, is power, and the advancement of age is treated with suspicion and, in some quarters, derision.

I wish Capaldi a smooth ride. Criticisms of an actor’s age and their ability to portray a lead are for the most part blinkered and simply unfair – Sir Ian McKellen is 74, played Richard III at the same age as Capaldi is now, a title role which would kick-start his Hollywood viability with tremendous force. Clint Eastwood was playing action roles well into his fifties, while Capaldi’s fellow Scot Sean Connery (the same age as Eastwood) was, at Capaldi’s current vintage, shooting Highlander – and this is to number a few male actors of a generation back, Capaldi’s critics might well note that Liam Neeson is 61, and Sean Bean and Paul McGann are not far from Capaldi’s age at 53. What matters to new Who‘s more recent fans is perhaps that since 2006 the role has been filled by young men, and the character has shifted with this perception. Vitality, virility and vivacity are all hallmarks of the Doctor in his latter years – so where does a leading man confidently striding his way past middle age take such a role, and where also does Steven Moffat, the man who cast him and steers the character in equal measure?

It’s an intriguing prospect, hinting at some significant gear-changes to the character of the Doctor and the nature of the show. A more seasoned-looking Time Lord might carry a new authority where he previously had to punch above his weight (an aspect teased at with the first of the Young Doctors, Peter Davison), and presumably presents new challenges and nuances. Are we to make of this that the Doctor will be once again an outwardly older soul, like his earlier incarnations? Can we expect that the physical demands of the role will be reduced out of necessity (both Tennant and Smith played on through back injuries, it should be noted) or passed to a younger – maybe male, companion as under Hartnell? Will the companion-Doctor dynamic, remodelled and ret-conned post-2005 to something akin to romance – requited or not, change again? And to that end, would the through-line of this relationship – for some fans the essence of the series and their identification with its leads, be removed or dramatically changed, and in having been changed become a storyline in its own right?

For the first time in a long time I’m eager to find out, and if online chat and conversations with friends and workmates indicates for the moment, Peter Capaldi’s casting seems to have woken a new interest in the series and the character. Doctor Who is a show about change, with the character’s Protean nature at its heart; under Steven Moffat the Universe seems to have been subjected to increasing change, revision and reinvention.  Would it be too much to ask of those among the Doctor’s fans mourning the departure of a ‘young’ Time Lord embrace this latest change as well?



August 5th, 2013



As seen in a vocal corner of Fandom earlier today (Warning, contains SHOUTING, SWEARS, SELF-HUMILIATION and is probably not what your boss might want to hear you tuning in to at work) 

Kids, stay above this line…

Read the rest of this entry »

The New Doctor:

August 5th, 2013


Fast Return – July 2013

August 4th, 2013

Nothing happened last month. NO-THING!!


As near to quashed as you could get without being quashed yourself. And yet a small hardcore cling to the tales of a friend-of-a-friend-who-knows-a-bloke. The well may in fact be dry – weird thought, isn’t it?

Debunked via Twitter by the man hisself! Couldn’t you just SPIT?

To be revealed at 7pm tonight? Codswallop!!!

Try 6am tomorrow morning in NZ instead. The one time international date lines beat us to the punch – Oh man, it’ll be yesterday’s news by then!

Oh, but Mr Moffat he say he’s been lying his ‘ass’ off for a month now, so it’s anyone’s guess. And if you find any of the above hard to believe.

Impossible… to draw that is! Yes, courtesy of Mike Farmer, Clara Oswldwinohpleaseyourself finally debuted in the DWM comic strip. And in some panels, it even looks like her! A bit.

 I have nothing to segue into the next bit, so I’ll just say:

Yes, sir! Mathematical prodigy and fan whipping boy est 1981, Adric as played by Matthew Waterhouse, is set to return to Who in audio form. Woot! Squee! Zowie! This is excellent news, even if it’s only for one story. But quick, BFP – get a few stories for Adric with Tom in while you’re at it?  

For all your would-like-to-have-certain-characters-in-28mm-but-y’know needs, Crooked Dice present yet another Tweedy Mattinson accompanied by his chum Clara, plus, a favourite of this parish, feisty temp Miss Temple. Go get ‘em, boys.

And finally…

And if 28 millimetres is simply too small for your tastes, feast your peepers on a re-voiced ad for Character’s latest round of plastic diversions:


The Colin Baker Era

July 23rd, 2013

You may not like the stories, you may not like the coat (although I never thought it as bad as others have called it), one thing is clear: Colin Baker enjoyed playing the part immensely. Here was a man who was willing to rub ‘dirt’ on himself, get tied onto a careening cart, and even pop onto an exercise bike.

But, more than that, he was a Doctor of action. And he doesn’t shy away. When faced with the Cybermen, he knows that it’s all out or nothing. Laser probe to the chest unit, destruction of the TARDIS… even picking up a gun and shooting the Cyberleader! Whether lowering himself into a Kronton Time Corridor or facing off against a huge fly, he’s ready to put himself into danger. And make those hard choices. Mothballing Shockeye? He went there. Putting his TARDIS on the line to protect Karfel? He did that. Genocide an entire species? If he must…

He was also a Doctor of temperament. Okay, it was supposed to be post-regeneration issues, ironed out over an episode or two, but it became a defining characteristic. What it meant was that you couldn’t trust the Doctor from one moment to the next, to see things how we do… he became more alien. In The Trial of a Time Lord, Matrix fabrication or no, what we see on screen could well be the Doctor as himself. This Doctor makes the audience uncertain, edgy, and thus made for better television.

And the Doctor loved his words. Many florid speeches, loving correction of the way Peri spoke, and a flourish for the dramatic with his oration. “Nevermore a jumblejack” immediately comes to mind. This also ramped up in The Trial of a Time Lord where, courtesy of Pip and Jane Baker, words went flying like they were cramming whole dictionaries into sentences. What this does show is that the Doctor uses more than action to outwit. Head in a noose? Only afraid he won’t be able to get his point across. At the point of a gun? Never more loquacious. Facing his own mortality? More than once, at that, and yet he continues to think past it (okay, after a bit of a moan). And he had more than enough banter to fend off the Valeyard.

“Old Sixy” (as he now refers to himself) has had quite the renovation post-series, and yet the television stories do show a Sixth Doctor in fine form, ready for whatever call to action comes along.


Fast Return – June 2013

July 22nd, 2013

Yeeeeahh, that month. Well, here it is/was! 

June 2013! The month that Doctor Who Fandom broke? Or was it the month the Anniversary celebrations toppled off their heels down the catwalk steps as the departure of an incumbent Doctor was leak- er, hastily announced? Maybe a bit of both.

It’s the hazard of over-managing your secrets, maybe. Nature abhors a vacuum, they say. And betwixt the announcement of Matt Smith’s hanging up his fez and today there’s been an ample amount of void-filling. So much so that you could base an RTD Dalek or Cybus episode scenario on it, in fact! But what does all this mean? Well, read on…

One of the big issues is that in an absence of hard, factual news, flimsy, insubstantial news will be concocted or agreed upon. Nothing too wrong wth that if your business is obfuscation and distraction leading up to the main event, MAYBE, but this is June. Six months to go (or fewer, if you’re of a mind to correct my maths.) And the problem with fake or simply false news is, the more it proliferates, the more frustrated those hungry for actual announcements get. Modern media, including social media, feed into the game, substituting ‘scoops’and ‘exclusives’ for fact-checking and generallly outsourcing verification to the huddled, impatient masses. And selling advertising. Oops. Witness:

Africa 90. It wasn’t a Live Aid follow-up! No sir. Look, it’s not too recent any more and lord knows the rumour had had more deaths and resurrections than Davros – it’s the Borad of missing episode rumours! The story that, allegedly up to ninety classic episodes were found in recent years in Africa, shipped to the UK and left a paper trail of freight manifests so compelling it took in Ian Levine and prompted a literal roller-coaster ride in unofficial missing ‘sodes forums is not the stuff of legend, if not actual fact. Was it a hoax generated by brilliant but truly evil fans with a couple of years up their sleeves? Apparently. Were we all furoius and broken-hearted when the collateral extended beyond those it was intended to ensnare? Probably…

…but was it also the single-most nail-biting thing to have unfolded over the Anniversary year to date, eclipsing even the official show in its twists and turns? You betcha. 

Let’s say this now: 2013 has been a stink-fest for actual new, exciting Who-related news. You can keep your stamp sets and minted coins; thirty days (oh, correct my maths, go on!) on from the reality of Smith’s successor disappearing in the fug of bookie charts and Entertainment page sidebars, fake rumours are all we have left.

That and well-intended competitions for booty.

Heh. Oh, The Book Depository. Well-intended askers of questions for Dr Who booty. How many episodes of Doctor Who were deleted, you ask? Even Richard Molesworth would have difficulty with that one – and said as much! They’ve since changed the competition question, but ho ho, it’s like Who Created the Daleks all over again!

McGann Tweets! yes, the Eighth Doctor starting making birdlike noises back in january of this year, and while we can’t possibly reproduce his first tweet (though it is a classic of modern inflective), he’s quite follow-able. Here’s his shout-out to an erstwhile nemesis:



Here’s his exchange with an erstwhile incarnation on the latter’s birthday (happy 70th Colin!)



And then later in the month a fan went and just asked him if he’d be in the anniversary special, and he twerted this:



What to say, eh?

Big Finish brings you More Hinchcliffe! This we like the sound of. Hell, anything that evokes the Tom Baker of old without comedy Kraals we like the sound of.

Look, I said this was old news. Fake Anniversary trailer:  Breakdown: Genius!

But to play us out instead and fresh from ComicCon, here’s Karen Gillan as a slaphead.

Ooh, missus!