Building LEGO Ideas Doctor Who set in Timelapse

I bought myself a little present around Christmas; the LEGO Ideas Doctor Who set. I haven’t had a chance to build it up until now, and I thought I’d film the process and create a timelapse.

Hope you enjoy it!

As you can see, the set includes Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi’s Doctors, Clara Owsald, a Weeping Angel, and Two Daleks. The TARDIS console room is really nicely done, especially the console itself. I was quite impressed at the nifty way the set accommodated the idea of the TARDIS being bigger inside than outside with the unfolding Police Box.

If you’re looking for your own one of these, you can find them at most good local toy shops or online on Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com.

Abslom Daak, I presume?

The new series of Doctor Who is forging ahead on the BBC at the moment. I have to say, I’m loving Peter Capaldi as an older, grumpier Doctor!

I also love the fact that the show’s lead writer and producer, Steven Moffat, is a Doctor Who fan and likes to weave references to old stories into the show. Well, on the trailer for next week’s episode, Time Heist, I picked up a reference to a character I’d completely forgotten about.

There’s a point in the trailer where someone is looking through what appears to be a list of criminals (they all have police numbers), and we very briefly see this guy:

Abslom Daak on screen

Recognise him? If you were a reader of the Doctor Who magazine in the 80s and early 90s you might recognise Abslom Daak, Dalek Killer! Daak was a criminal sentenced to life as a Dalek hunter and I loved the comic strips! Now, given that this is just a very brief appearance it’s more likely a nod to the fans than news of Daak actually appearing in a future episode, but it still made me smile.

So, two questions, do you remember Daak at all? And what other inter-story moments have you noticed in Doctor Who? References to previous locations? Characters you’d forgotten ever existed? Tell us in the comments below.

Find out more about Daak here and, if you’re in the UK, you can watch the Time Heist trailer on the BBC website.

Peter Capaldi is The Doctor

Peter CapaldiIf you like our Facebook page, you’ll already have seen a quick message about this: the identity of the twelfth Doctor has been revealed. Matt Smith is leaving the role and the next actor to take over the TARDIS is Peter Capaldi.

Peter is a tad older than the actors who have taken on the role of the Doctor in recent years – he’s 55 years old, the same age William Hartnell was when he was cast as the first Doctor. Personally, I’ve been wishing for an older Doctor for a while now. The trend has been for him to get younger with each regeneration but I think an older Doctor will bring some gravitas and, most likely, a change in tone for the show.

I’m looking forward to seeing Peter as the Doctor. How about you?

Here’s the full press release from the BBC:

In a special live broadcast, the BBC today announced that the role of Doctor Who would next be played by Peter Capaldi.

Amid much hype and speculation, Peter Capaldi was unveiled as the next Doctor during a special live television event on BBC ONE tonight.

Widely regarded as one of the biggest roles in British television, Capaldi will be the Twelfth Doctor and takes over from Matt Smith who leaves the show at Christmas.

Peter Capaldi says: “Being asked to play The Doctor is an amazing privilege. Like the Doctor himself I find myself in a state of utter terror and delight. I can’t wait to get started.”

Steven Moffat, lead writer and executive producer says : “It’s an incendiary combination: one of the most talented actors of his generation is about to play the best part on television. Peter Capaldi is in the TARDIS!”

Doctor Who companion, Jenna Coleman says “I’m so excited Peter Capaldi is the man taking on the challenge of becoming the Twelfth Doctor. With Steven’s writing and his talent I know we’ll be making an amazing show with an incredible incarnation of number 12. I can’t wait to start this new adventure!”

Charlotte Moore, Controller BBC One says : “Peter Capaldi has all the genius and versatility needed to take on the mantel of the great Time Lord and make the role his own. He’ll bring his own particular wisdom, charisma and wit to the Twelfth Doctor and take the show into an exciting new era.”

Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning says : “We started thinking Peter Capaldi might be the right person to take on this iconic part a few months ago. But it was only when he did a secret audition at Steven’s house under the cover of darkness that we knew we had our man. He’s an extraordinarily talented actor who can seemingly turn his hand to anything. We can’t wait to premiere his unique take on the Doctor on Christmas Day and we are sure he’s going to become one of the all-time classic Doctors.”

Doctor Who is produced by BBC Cymru Wales

BIOGRAPHY

Peter Capaldi is an award winning actor, film maker and lifelong Doctor Who fan.

He has enjoyed an illustrious career to date in both film and television.

Before securing the coveted role of the Twelfth Doctor, Peter first appeared in Doctor Who in 2008, playing Caecilius in the episode “The Fires of Pompeii”.

Peter grew up in Glasgow and attended the Glasgow School of Art, while studying there he secured his first breakthrough role in Local Hero (1983). He has also had roles in Dangerous Liaisons, The Crow Road, The Devil’s Whore and Torchwood: Children of Earth.

It is his role as Government spin doctor Malcolm Tucker in the BBC comedy series, The Thick of It , that has earned Peter both international and award success. In 2010 he won the BAFTA Television Award for Best Male Performance in a Comedy Role and the BPG Best Actor Award. In both 2010 and 2012, Peter won the British Comedy Award for Best TV Comedy Actor. A film spin-off from The Thick of It, entitled In the Loop, was released in 2009.

As well as appearing in front of the camera, Peter is an award winning film maker. In 1995, he won the Oscar for Best Short Film (Live Action) for Franz Kafka’s It’s a Wonderful Life. He also wrote Soft Top, Hard Shoulder, which won the audience award at the London Film Festival, and wrote and directed Strictly Sinatra. Peter’s stage credits include Professor Marcus in The Ladykillers at the Liverpool Playhouse, which saw the play transfer to the Gielgud Theatre in London.

2013 has been a busy year for Peter who has been seen on screen in the film World War Z and in BBC Two drama series The Hour, for which he was BAFTA nominated. Not only will Peter film his first scenes for Doctor Who this Autumn, but he will appear in the forthcoming film The Fifth Estate and the Disney film Maleficent.

Peter is currently filming new BBC One drama series The Musketeers, in which he plays Cardinal Richelieu which will launch in early 2014.

The Doctor Who Experience has landed

If you’ve ever fantasised about taking a flight in the TARDIS, you may be about to get your chance. The Doctor Who Experience invites you to step aboard and join the Doctor on an adventure through time and space.

The Doctor Who Experience opened on Sunday at London’s Olympia Two venue, and promises to be an unmissable event featuring an “exhilarating and unique walk-through experience and an awe-inspiring exhibition.”

Visitors are invited to step through a crack in time to become the Doctor’s companion on an adventure.  Their challenge is to reunite the Doctor with the TARDIS whilst fending off threats from a Dalek spaceship and Weeping Angels along the way, before exploring the wonders of Doctor Who at an out of this world exhibition.

When I was a child I had a TARDIS “wendy house”, and over the years I’ve sometimes wondered whether it would be possible to build a recreation of the main console… hey, this is called Geek-Speak for a reason, you know! So you may understand when I say I’m seriously excited by the possibility of visiting a full-size recreation of the TARDIS console room.

The exhibition element of the Doctor Who Experience charts the success of the show from the first series in 1963 to the most recent episodes starring Matt Smith and Karen Gillan.  Displays include items never seen before including original costumes, the Tom Baker TARDIS police box and two authentic TARDIS sets from the eras of David Tennant and Peter Davison.  The public are also able to get up close and personal with iconic sets from recent series, including the Pandorica Box and Chair and confront numerous monsters including several generations of the Daleks and Cybermen as well as Silurians an Ice Warrior and a Zygon.

BBC Worldwide have also announced that the Experience will be moving to a long-term home in Cardiff in 2012, so it should hopefully be around for your geeky enjoyment for a long time to come.

Checking on the Doctor Who Experience website as I write this, I see that it’s fully booked until 28th February and visitors are already being encouraged to book for Easter. If you have the opportunity, it’s probably worth looking at trying to get a ticket for a non-holiday date. Otherwise, book well in advance!

Enjoy the gallery of pre-opening shots below and, if you’ve had the chance to visit the Experience why not tell us what you thought in the comments?

Doctor Who Adventure Games: City of the Daleks

The first of the BBC’s Doctor Who Adventure Games is out and, if you’re in the UK, you can download it for free from the Doctor Who microsite. It’s currently available for PC, with the Mac version coming on the 15th of June.

I played it through on Saturday night (well, it was that or watch Britain’s Got Talent) – so what’s it like?

The story is that The Doctor and Amy arrive in London in 1963 but all is not at it should be. Instead of exploring a swinging city they discover the entire planet has been taken over by Daleks and most (possibly all) of humanity wiped out. So begins a session of sneaking past Dalek patrols, solving point and click puzzles, and navigating maze mini-games. As you proceed through the story you’ll depart from Earth and explore Skaro, the Daleks’ home planet, to find out how they’ve altered time and find a way to put it back.

The story’s not bad, actually. You should be able to get through the entire game in an hour or so, so don’t expect it to be an in-depth epic, but since this is meant to be an official part of the series we can assume the story explains why Amy didn’t recognise the Daleks in Victory of the Daleks. It does feel kind of like a television episode, but with you playing your part instead of just watching while it happens in front of you.

My computer (I was playing it on a laptop) failed the compatibility test because the processor is slower than required, but all that happened was the graphics were turned down to “medium”. At that level the graphics were acceptable. The characters were well recognisable and the Daleks still looked good. Actually, one of the effects of playing City of the Daleks is that I feel better about the new tutti-frutti Daleks than I did on their first appearance. They initially seemed totally ridiculous, but now I’ve seen them a bit more they aren’t so bad.

So the graphics were good enough, but the sound was better. The musical score is just wonderful. Matt Smith and Karen Gillan both lend their voices to the game, although I think you can tell they haven’t done video game voicing before. They seem a little unnatural, but once again I came back to the fact that I got this game for free… if you don’t count my TV Licence fee.

I did, very much, enjoy exploring the Dalek city of Kaalann. It was nice, in a strange way, to see the Emperor again, but surrounded with new style Daleks. I was a bit confused, though, about something called the Eye of Time. This is apparently a space/time event that the Time Lords harnessed… which sounds very similar to the Eye of Harmony, a black hole the Time Lords harnessed to give them the energy for their time travel experiments. Have the Who team decided to just change stuff without thinking anyone would notice? Or are they just calling everything the “Eye of xxxxxxx” these days? Dunno – but I kept thinking there had been a mistake somewhere along the way.

Oh yeh, I nearly forgot to mention the controls. Most of the control is by mouse, although keyboard alternatives also exist. The stealth/sneaking/hiding sections worked well, while the point and click puzzles tended to be a case of opening the inventory and using x on y. The maze mini-games were a bit tricky with a laptop trackpad, as I tried to guide a small item around a maze where touching the walls would result in failure. The controls are obviously as simple as possible to allow children easy access to the game, and generally they work well. There are just a few moments when you wish they were more precise.

In general, though, City of the Daleks is a good effort. It’s excellent for a free game, and great fun for Doctor Who fans. I think if I weren’t a fan I’d have lost interest, and if I had paid for it I would maybe be a bit miffed at how short it is, but I enjoyed playing it through. If you’re in the UK, head on over to the Doctor Who site and grab the game – don’t expect a super-high quality product, but do expect to have a bit of fun.

I’m looking forward to the next episode already. How about you?

Doctor Who stage show coming soon

The Doctor Who crew seem to be going all out this year to extend the series. There’s the free adventure games that will be available from the BBC website, and now they have announced a live action stage show towards the end of the year.

The show will feature scenes specially recorded by Matt Smith and Karen Gillan (who, sadly, won’t be appearing live) and will span time from wartime London to an epic final battle.

I know Doctor Who is billed as a children’s television show, but I have to say as a thirty-something year old I wouldn’t mind going to the stage show myself. After visiting The Gadget Show Live and enjoying the amazing technology on the stage there I think it will great to see how the Daleks, Cybermen and other classic monsters are brought to life in the Doctor Who show.

The tour dates are in the BBC article – if there’s one near you and you fancy going, check out the ticket office of your local venue… and have fun!

BBC prepares to release Doctor Who adventure games

James DocThis is a guest post by James Doc. James is a Web Technologies student in Lincoln, UK and is a freelance PHP & ASP.NET web designer in his spare time! He gets excited over new gadgets, sci-fi and a wide variety of music. You can read more of Doc’s thoughts on his blog or follow him on Twitter

I reckon that at one point or another we’ve all said; ‘wouldn’t it be great if…’ whilst watching a TV show.  And this is something that the lead writer of Doctor Who, Steven Moffat, agrees with – “Children don’t just watch Doctor Who – they join in. They make up games, invent their monsters, create their own stories.

Children don’t just watch Doctor Who – they join in. They make up games, invent their monsters, create their own stories.
Steven Moffat – Executive Producer

Soon we’ll be able to do just that. Through the Doctor Who website in June, the BBC will be releasing four interactive computer games to allow the viewers to control how the Doctor Who story unfolds.  Piers Wenger, one of the Executive Producers for Doctor Who says this about the new games: “There aren’t 13 episodes of Doctor Who this year, there are 17 – four of which are interactive. Everything you see and experience within the game is part of the Doctor Who universe: we’ll be taking you to places you’ve only ever dreamed about seeing – including locations impossible to create on television.

These four new stories will be an extension to the existing series, following the Doctor and Amy as they travel through time and space, moving from a desolate burning London to an ice world or a dark space ship.  In these episodes the Doctor and Amy will meet the Daleks and Cybermen, alongside a several completely new aliens.  The question is; will they be friend or foe?

The Doctor and Amy Pond have been recreated in 3D digital form, and Matt Smith and Karen Gillan have been in the recording studio to provide a voice over for their characters, alongside a full cast to provide voices for both the new and old characters.  Murray Gold, who has written the music for the Eccleston, Tennant and Smith eras of Doctor Who has been commissioned to add a sound track and sound effects for the games.

At the moment the plot and titles of these new interactive stories are being kept secret, but with the pen of Steven Moffat (Blink, The Empty Child), Phil Ford (The Waters of Mars) and James Moran (Fires of Pompeii) you can guarantee a gripping and scary ride!

More screenshots from the games are currently on the Doctor Who website .  All four of the interactive episodes will be completely free for both Mac and PC, with the first episode being made available from the Doctor Who website in June 2010. For a taste of what’s to come, enjoy the teaser trailer that was shown after Saturday’s episode:

Thoughts? Opinions? Hopes and fears for how the games will pan out? Let us know what you think in the comments.

The (New) Doctor Is In

Warning: This post contains spoilers.

Way back in January of last year, the BBC announced that the newest incarnation of the iconic sci-fi character The Doctor would also be the youngest. Matt Smith would be the youngest actor ever to play the ancient Time Lord.

Well, UK viewers were finally able to get a proper glimpse of Matt in action on Easter Saturday with the transmission of the new Doctor Who episode, The Eleventh Hour. So how did it go?

Ooh, new title sequence. I didn’t expect that for some reason – the visuals and theme tune have both been updated. The visuals are fantastic – not so sure about the theme tune but it’s not terrible. It’ll probably grow on me. Anyway, onward to the episode itself.

Regeneration stories are always a bit wierd. The audience is getting used to a new Doctor, and a new Doctor is getting used to the role. I thought Matt played the traditional confusion really well and it was an interesting angle to have his Doctor not really “arriving” until near the end of the episode. He was still recognisable, but kept making mistakes including blowing up his sonic screwdriver.

It will be good to see how Matt settles in as the series continues, and I’m keen to find out what his “normal” personality will be like. If we’re to believe his own words, it’ll be one of “a madman with a box”!

The episode is fast-paced and it looks like Matt is going to bring a whole bundle of energy to the role. His new companion, Amy Pond played by Karen Gillan, is nicely distrustful and not as willing to simply go along with what she’s told as some past ones. There already seems to be a nice relationship between Amy and The Doctor, and I’m looking forward to seeing how that develops too.

I will admit to being a bit confused to start with, because I was visiting my sister and we had the telly on in the background. So I couldn’t hear it properly and thought when Amy appeared she was wearing an awfully short skirt for a policewoman (not that I’m complaining, really). All becomes clear if you watch it with the volume up though :)

As well as a new Doctor this series introduces a new TARDIS. The exterior looks much cleaner than the previous one, but it’s the console room that’s had the most noticeable change. The organic coral look is toned down in favour of a more angular and technological style. The set is on several different levels reminiscent of the console room from the Peter Cushing movies. I really like the new look apart from the blown glass Time Rotor – it just doesn’t look right to me. But the rest of the room, and the multiple exits that suggest more of the TARDIS might appear on screen all look great.

My favourite moment was a nod to long-standing fans that runs through the face of every Doctor from William Hartnell up to David Tennant, and then Matt proclaims, “Hello, I’m The Doctor”. Favourite one-liner was definitely, “You’re Scottish – fry something!”

The Eleventh Hour was a decent start to the new season. It was enjoyable, but not mindblowingly spectacular. Still, it’s the first episode for a new Doctor, companion, and executive producer, and there’s plenty more to come!

Oh, and finally, the trailer afterwards showed… wait for it… Spitfires. In space. Firing lasers at Dalek Motherships. That’s like every childhood dream rolled into one! Can’t wait for that one!

Did you see The Eleventh Hour? What did you think? Does it look like you’re going to like this new series of Doctor Who? Let us know in the comments.

New Doctor Who Series 5 Trailer Out

The new series of Doctor Who starts this Easter and, as a lifelong Who fan, I’ve been looking forward to seeing some new stories.

The BBC have released a new trailer for the series, featuring Matt Smith as the Doctor and Karen Gillan as Amy Pond. Have a look:

I really, really want to like the news series but this trailer just isn’t doing anything for me. I will, of course, reserve judgment until the series actually starts but, based on this, I’m not so sure I’ll like it. Still, we’ll see – I was pleasantly surprised by Mr Tennant! Here’s to seeing what the Beeb has in store at Easter :)

Oh, and finally, am I the only one that thinks it’s odd that this is called “Series 5” when there’s been over forty years of Doctor Who? I know it’s not important, but I just think it’s strange!

Bring back the Time Lords! [Doctor Who]

Warning: This post contains spoilers concerning the Doctor Who Christmas and New Year specials – if you haven’t seen them and don’t want to know anything about them, STOP READING!

Christmas Day usually brings an extra treat here in the UK (aside from the usual presents, I mean). For a few years now there’s been a Doctor Who Christmas special to look forward to, but this year we also got a New Year’s Day one.

The Christmas Day one was pretty strange, with my dad and I sitting there wondering what on earth was going on. Part two, on New Year’s Day, was much better and introduced us to the new Doctor, played by Matt Smith. Something else really excited me about the story, though, the return of Gallifrey and the Time Lords!

If you’re wondering what on earth I’m talking about here’s the summary: The Time Lords are a race of people from the planet Gallifrey. They harnessed the power of a black hole (the Eye of Harmony) and used the energy from that to develop time travel technology. The Doctor is a Time Lord, dotting around the universe in a stolen TARDIS. The Time Lords are no more, however, after a devastating war that left them sealed within a time bubble… only the Doctor and the Master survived.

The Time Lords make a return in this Christmas and New Year’s specials, but the Doctor is horrified by the thought. While Doctor Who fans might remember them as benevolent overseers of time, avoiding interference in the affairs of other species and trying to track down renegade members of their species (the Doctor included) they’ve changed into warmongering people, determined to destroy everything that has ever existed simply to win their war. So… they don’t get to stay around very long.

I had really hoped they’d come back though, because they were among the only people the Doctor couldn’t just wow with his tricks: they knew most of them.

Psychic paper? “Yeh, you probably just nicked that from stores.” TARDIS bigger on the inside than outside? “They’re all like that – we designed them that way, and don’t think of running off ‘cos we’ve changed your TARDIS’ locks.”

Ok, so I’m being a bit silly, but I loved the idea of the Doctor being on the run, a hero to many but a renegade to his own people. I loved there being someone genuinely more powerful than the Doctor, and I loved the idea that another Time Lord could come along in any story and we’d discover a bit more about the race’s background. But it looks like that’s all behind us now.

I have to say, the new series’ of Doctor Who have been fantastic… I’ve just never really liked the “last Time Lord” thing and thought this year’s specials were a great chance to bring them back. It’s a shame that didn’t happen.

Am I the only one to think that? What did you think of the episodes, if you saw them? And what of the Time Lords? Have your say in the comments!