If you’ve watched the news at some time today, you may possibly have noticed that a certain timelord is returning to the screens.
The press launch for the new series of Doctor Who occured last night, and most BBC news programmes provided some coverage, with even Newsnight having Jeremy Paxman dematerialise at the end of the programme.
The prelude to the launch was the leak of the first episode onto the internet. The official line is that it leaked via CBC, the Canadian broadcaster, and partner in the show. However as quoted in this quite amusing article in the Times, they deny the leak. One suggestion though is that the leak was deliberate, a sort of viral underground marketing campaign to get everybody talking about it. Certainly the reaction of Russell T Davies which is pretty much of a “so what?” has led people to think that may be the case.
Anyway, there are now multiple copies circulating on the net, and when a CD with a copy was offered to me I accepted – having waited nine years for some new Doctor Who I couldn’t say no, and first impressions are very good. It is worth saying too that although it looks like a finished programme, it is actually a late rough cut – I’m aware of at least one aspect that has been changed for the real showing.
First off this is definitely not what finished back in the 1980’s, nor it is a rerun of the 1990’s revival. It is a new show that links back to the past, but is not tied to it. The opening sequences are great, with the focus being on Rose, as she very much comes into the middle of the Doctor dealing with an Auton invasion, rather than the traditional Doctor arrives, at the beginning of the story. You very much get the impression that he’s been busy with this for a while! The show has very much been influenced by other genre shows, and I can certainly see the discussed Buffy influences in some ways, and there are elements that if you’re expecting the old show, you won’t like at all (I can hear some of the fan backlash now!). However, like a number of reports have said, for many a fan of the old show it puts a smile on your face from the beginning to end, and I’m looking forward to seeing it on a TV screen, rather than a computer monitor when it broadcasts in three weeks time!