Doctor Who finale to have an extended running time 

After a bit of speculation, the BBC confirmed today that the final two episodes of Series 9, Heaven Sent / Hell Bent will both have extended running times. 

The penultimate episode Heaven Sent will run for 55 minutes and will air at 8.05pm on BBC One on 28th November. 
The series finale Hell Bent will be 65 minutes long and start at 8pm on 5th December. 

The two episodes will see the Doctor dealing with the consequences of Episode Ten, Face the Raven. 

Jenna Coleman to attend Doctor Who festival 

BBC Worldwide announced today that Jenna Coleman will be attending both Saturday and Sunday of this year’s official Doctor Who Festival. This will be the last chance fans will see Jenna in the official Doctor Who universe before her exit as the much loved Clara Oswald. 

The Doctor Who Festival is the only official event this year to include appearances from Peter Capaldi, Michelle Gomez and Ingrid Oliver as well as Executive Producer Steven Moffat. An event for fans of all ages, the Festival offers a fantastic opportunity to get the inside track from the cast and crew of Doctor Who in this extravaganza of immersive and interactive opportunities.

Mark Gatiss will be joining the Festival for all three days, as well as joining the team from Millennium FX each day in its theatre show, revealing to guests how they create and build many of the monsters on Doctor Who. Mark and the team will take an in depth look at the new monsters that appeared on the screens for Series 9. 

As well as Mark Gatiss and MFX, theatre shows will also include Meet The Castand Meet The Writers panels, featuring all seven Series 9 writers over the three days. 

The daily Meet The Cast panel will see Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman, Michelle Gomez and Ingrid Oliver discuss their experiences behind the scenes on the set of Doctor Who.
The minds behind Doctor Who will be quizzed in the Writer’s Panel; Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, Sarah Dollard, Toby Whithouse, Catherine Tregenna, Peter Harness and Jamie Mathieson will talk through the development and design of some of the show’s favourite characters and compelling storylines over the three days.

Special Effects supervisor Danny Hargreaves and his team at Real SFX reveal what happens on a typical day’s filming and wow fans with their impressive live show.
Fans of the show can also enter the Doctor Who Festival Cosplay Showcase and be put to the test in the Fan Challenge.
Photo opportunities with Jenna Coleman are now on sale. There are also photos with Ingrid Oliver, Michelle Gomez, Mark Gatiss, Danny Hargreaves and Nick Briggs still available for purchase via the website. Photos opportunities with Peter Capaldi are now sold out.

Visitors will experience what it’s really like to be on the Doctor Who set in front of and behind the camera in the Drama School and Production Village featuring Big Finish, Nick Briggs and Douglas MacKinnon, giving ticket holders the opportunity to learn voice acting from the voice of the Dalek himself and discover how to act with CGI.

Two of the iconic sets from Series 9 will be on open display to all ticket holders, and the set of Clara’s Living Room will be available to ticket holders for photo opportunities.
The ticket price includes day entry to the Festival, access to three theatre shows, lanyard, show planner and access to all the activity in the Festival Hall. TARDIS tickets also include the brochure, lounge access, front block theatre show seats and a Limited Edition Doctor Who Festival 2015 T-shirt.

Tickets are still available to purchase from the Doctor Who Festival website. 

Doctor Who Lego sets revealed

The team behind Lego Ideas, have revealed the first images of their upcoming Doctor Who range. Check out the images bellow.
Here is the official product description:

Construct a stunningly detailed LEGO® version of the iconic TARDIS® and role-play the Doctor’s time-travel adventures! Created by fan-designer Andrew Clark and selected by LEGO Ideas members, this set is based on the BBC’s popular and long-running television series about a Time Lord – the Doctor – exploring the universe in a blue police box. Due to trans-dimensional engineering, the TARDIS is bigger on the inside than the outside and this cool multifunctional set includes the console room that houses all the flight controls. Regenerate the Doctor and defeat the evil Daleks™ and a Weeping Angel with the help of his extraordinary companion Clara. Then close the doors of the TARDIS and launch into another dimension! Includes 4 minifigures with assorted accessory elements: the Eleventh Doctor, the Twelfth Doctor, Clara Oswald and a Weeping Angel, plus 2 Daleks™.


  
  
  
   
    
 
LEGO Doctor Who sets will be available from 1st December 2015. At the RRP of £49.99.

Official Doctor Who Rating

BARB (Broadcasters audience research board) have released the official consolidated 7 day rating for The Magicians Apprentice. In total 6.54 million viewers tuned in to see the first episode of Peter Capaldi’s second series, as The Doctor.

The final rating is slightly down on his Deep Breath debut, from last year, which had 6.9 million viewers.
These figures do not include the BBC iPlayer, where the episode was watched by 1.3 million. Which bumps the final figure up to a respectable 7.84 million.

Jenna Coleman IS leaving Doctor Who

After a week of speculation, Jenna Coleman announced on Radio One today that she has indeed filmed her final scenes in Doctor Who as Clara Oswald. She revealed to presenter Nick Grimshaw that she will leave at some point during the series, which starts on BBC One tomorrow night. 

It was also revealed today that she will be playing Queen Victoria in the new ITV drama series, Victoria.
How do you feel about her leaving? Let me know @BadWilf 

River Song to return at Christmas

The BBC announced today that River Song will be joinging the Dcotor on his Christmas adventure.
The eleventh Christmas special started filming this week and is written by showrunner Steven Moffat and, is directed by Douglas Mackinnon.

The BBC also released this synopsis:

“It’s Christmas Day in the future and the TARDIS is parked on a snowy village street, covered in icicles, awaiting its next adventure. Time traveller River Song meets her husband’s new incarnation, in the form of Peter Capaldi, for the first time this Christmas”.

Alex Kingston said on her reappearance:

“To be honest, I did not know whether River would ever return to the show, but here she is, back with the Doctor for the Christmas special. Steven Moffat is on glittering form, giving us an episode filled with humor and surprise guest castings. I met Peter for the first time at Monday’s read through. We had a laugh, and I am now excited and ready to start filming with him and the Doctor Who team. Christmas in September?, why not!”

Steven Moffat added:

“Another Christmas, another special for Doctor Who – and what could be more special than the return of Alex Kingston as Professor River Song? The last time the Doctor saw her, she was a ghost. The first time he met her, she died. So how can he be seeing her again? As ever, with the most complicated relationship in the universe, it’s a matter of time…”

The character of River first appeared in 2008. She’s often regarded as a marmite companion.
My feeling is that River is to Steven Moffat what Rose was to Russell T Davies. He’ll neve be able to resist bringing her back.

Frankie episode one-spoiler free review

A few years ago in America, there were a series of commercials featuring Cavemen advertising GEICO car insurance. A TV exec Frankiesaw the ads and thought “this would make a great TV show” (It didn’t).
After watching Frankie, it’s clear that an exec at the BBC saw the boots “here come the girls” commercials and had the same thought.
Luckily, Frankie is a good show. It’s written by Lucy Gannon (Soldier Soldier) and stars Eve Myles (Doctor Who/Torchwood) and Dean Lennox Kelly (Doctor Who/Shameless).

Frankie (played by Myles) is a nurse with a heart of gold, often putting the care of her patients a head of her own. Her long-term partner Ian (Kelly), a police officer is starting to feel the strain of her being so caring.

The episode starts off a few days before Frankie’s 36th birthday. Ian is planning a surprise party for her, she knows. He does it every year.
Frankie is so caring, that she misses her own birthday in order to care for one of her patients. Which, is the straw the broke the camels back for Ian.

Eve Myles puts in another great performance, it’s as if the part was written for her. She injects humour and emotion and gives us a fully formed character, that we often don’t see in a series opener.
The supporting cast is also great, Kelly puts in an endearing performance as Ian, in the hands of a lesser actor, he could have come across as unlikable, but you genuinely feel his pain when Frankie let’s him down.

Be prepared to fall in love with Eve Myles all over again.

Frankie starts on the 14th of May at 9pm, BBC1.

Have a listen to the chat the Pharos project and I had with Eve Myles last year.