Monday 2 January 2012

Year's up

Crikey, it's the second of January already. This new year's just storming along, isn't? Mind you, I did sleep for almost three quarters of the first of January, so it's not too surprising that it seems to be going fairly quickly. At least Christmas is over; actually, it's the ninth day of Christmas, but near enough done with. Now, I love a bit of Christmas, but it's a bloody relief to have it all over. Especially since I had to wrok on Christmas Eve, Boxing Day, and the 27th, 28th, 29th and 30th. Which is, of course, nothing compared to those policemen, nurses, doctors, firemen, and so forth, who worked right through Christmas Day, but still. At least I've had three days off for New Year, and eventually managed to do something to celebrate. New Year's Chinese - a strange irony there. I'll have to have a western meal for Chinese New Year in February.

Christmas Day was a lot of fun, though, which is part of the reason I struggled so much getting up for work on Boxing Day. Who enjoyed the Doctor Who Christmas Special? I liked it a great deal; not quite up to the previous year's standard, but just right for the alcohol sodden, sentimental feel of Christmas Day. If you don't like things quite so festive, then how about reading Stromboli's Comet, the 2011 Christmas Special for The Doctor Who Project, if you haven't already? A wonderful read, and only Christmassy in the vaguest sense (it is, after all, about a snowball).

There are plenty of fan productions to look forward to in the upcoming months. Panic Moon is publishing its January issue any day now, and it's always a good read if you like snappy little Who-obsessed articles. Whotopia, the Canadian web fanzine, is soon to release its 23rd issue. This edition is a Matt Smith special, including the long-awaited reviews for the whole sixth series, up to and including my review of The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe. An extended edition will appear on this very blog in good time (or, to put it another way, my review was too long and the unedited version is sitting there waiting to be read).

If fanzines aren't your thing, how about some brand new Doctor Who on film? Oh yes, now this is exciting! There are two fan productions on the horizon. Those who follow the fanfilm phenomenon should be familiar with Nick Scovell and Interalia's work. If you're not, then you should track down a copy of The Millennium Trap. This was a rather marvellous fanfilm released in 1997, filmed in glorious monochrome and starring Nick Scovell as the Doctor. There's a trailer here, but don't bother with the download link - the download is no longer available, sadly. I'm sure it's still possible to track down the 2009 special edition, though, if you look hard enough online. Scovell is a fantastic Doctor, and it wasn't long before he took to the role again, on stage, in a theatrical remake of Fury of the Deep at the Portsmouth New Theatre Royal in 2002. In 2006 - with the aid of a surge in Who popularity thanks to the new series - came The Evil of the Daleks, which I was lucky enough to see. The following year, I went to see the group's last stage production, The Dalek Masterplan, which was utterly brilliant.

The plan was for the next play to be based on The Power of the Daleks; however, the BBC declined the permissions required. Quite why, I don't understand; they had happily allowed the previous productions, which raised money for Children in Need, and can only have further encouraged the ever growing Doctor Who fandom. Nonetheless, the stage play was not to be. However, production is now well under way on a filmed remake. The Power of the Daleks will be made available on YouTube later this year. To whet your appetite, there's a very exciting trailer here.

But that's not all! At the end of The Millennium Trap, the grievously injured Doctor regenerated. Finally, fifteen years later, we're going to see an adventure featuring this new Doctor, played by James Harper, in Doctor Who: I Can See You. You can catch these guys on facebook.

That's all the Who nonsense I've planned to go on about for now. Join me tomorrow, when I shall go on about Sherlock Holmes for a change.

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