Review: Sirens of Audio present Janet Fielding 2023

For those unaware, the Sirens of Audio is a podcast focused on the huge amount of audio dramas that have expanded the universe of Doctor Who during the 21st century. Although unaffiliated with the Doctor Who Club of Australia, it is run by two former members of its executive committee who have been able to leverage that time at the coal face to build a rapport with the stars of the series, whom the cornucopia of audio dramas continue to bring into our lives.

I wax nostalgic because their initial event, featuring Australia’s own Janet Fielding — aka Tegan Jovanka, primary companion of the 5th Doctor — was a welcome return to the intimacy of fan events in the 80s and 90s rather than the corporate meat grinder such things have evolved into. There’s something magic about a community space intended for a couple of hundred where the people on stage can recognise and meaningfully interact with the audience. A magic that is muted in the sort of auditoriums you have at modern mega-cons, built for so many more and where the individual can so easily be lost.

Philip and Dwayne hosted the day with the easy banter you’d expect of long time co-hosts, warming the eager crowd for Janet’s initial appearance. While Tegan is often celebrated as a brash “mouth on legs”, the woman who brings her to life is altogether a much warmer and ingratiating presence, speaking to a career on both sides of the curtain as actor, agent, and advocate.

While I love the expansiveness of allowed to modern fandom by the digital realm, talking with anyone and everyone, watching a video from a convention in another time and place we could never get to, being there at the time remains an essential experience. Even though the anecdotes and reminiscences can be familiar to some of us if we’ve been at an event with Janet before or read interviews with her, what does that matter when we’ll endlessly re-consume favourite episodes or books? The joy is in being part of the telling with other people, in seeing new fans being swept up in hearing the stories for the first time, in remembering when it was our first time touching the glamour of our favourite series.

Without a doubt the best part of the event for the cost of admission was the Q&A session. We might groan at a question we’ve heard before, and Janet might take someone to task, but there’s no cruelty or meanness there; the teasing is affectionate. She knows it’s always going to be someone’s first time asking something that’s burned in them for years or feeling the need to grab for something in the glare of the spotlight that is Janet’s shrewd and experienced focus. Questions showing you paid attention to what she talked to the audience about earlier, or invite her to engage outside the narrow focus of being just an actor on Doctor Who are rewarded with insightful and thoughtful answers.

Sadly, the days when gathering mementoes of our brushes with the famous and the fabulous were free or included in the door charge are long gone. Bringing guests in from overseas and finding somewhere to hold the event all cost money, and keeping the door charge down means its photos and autographs that compensate the guests for the time they’re spending with us. No one can honestly say that such ephemera is cheap, but the prices being asked at these events are affordable and probably less than you’d find yourself forking out at a mega con. More importantly, the more boutique nature of the gathering means you have the chance for a chat with Janet, and she gets a chance to be a person rather than a glorified rubber stamp on a production line.

Janet has two more stops on her trip: Hobart on April 15, and then finally her home town of Brisbane the following week on April 23. Given the chance to see Doctor Who guests in Australia, let alone major stars, is fairly rare this is an opportunity I would strongly recommend Australian fans to grab. Especially locals of the Apple Isle, who generally have miss out due to the exrta complication of having to foot the cost of travelling to the mainland for occasions such as these.

(Sirens of Audio will be hosting a similar event to this with Sophie Aldred, exclusively in Sydney, on May 13).

Push the Big Blue Button again for DWCA 2022 AGM

DATE: Sunday 21 August 2022
TIME: 4pm
VENUE: 2nd Floor Club Burwood, 97 Burwood Road, Burwood NSW
AGENDA: President’s Report; Treasurer’s Report; and Election of Office Bearers.

Once again we’ll be offering people an online attendance option conferencing software Big Blue Button, which has a neat built-in poll function for taking votes. An email with the invite code will be sent out to members the day before (Saturday August 20).

Any candidate standing for election as an Office Bearer (President, Vice President, Secretary or Treasurer) must be a current DWCA member who has held membership for a minimum period of five years, including at least one year immediately prior to the election. Additionally, they should be able to attend regular committee meetings held in Sydney and demonstrate an ongoing commitment to the club.

To nominate for an Office Bearer position, download the form below and fill in the following information:

  • the name of the nominee;
  • the address of the nominee;
  • the Club member number of the nominee;
  • a statement that the member wishes to nominate for a specific Office Bearer position (a person can only nominate for one position in any election);
  • the signature of the nominee;
  • the date of the nomination; and
  • the signature and the Club member numbers of two members endorsing the nomination.

The form must be submitted to the following address by 27 July:

The Returning Officer DWCA
PO Box 870
NSW 1710

Eligible nominees will be notified by the Returning Officer once nominations are closed and invited to submit a statement to be provided to members in support of their nomination.

Nomination Form


Nuzzing in ze world can stop The Underwater Menace!

It’s been a long time coming, but the BBC Shop has finally listed Second Doctor adventure The Underwater Menace in its online store, available for pre-order before its release date of 26 October.

The Underwater Menace 1There has been surprisingly little fanfare about the listing, given the serial’s long and troubled journey to get to this point. The recovery of the story’s second episode was announced in December 2011, joining the already existing third episode and seeming to ensure the release of the serial on DVD. But over three years later, following constant shifts in the DVD schedule and conflicting accounts of whether the missing first and fourth episodes would be released as reconstructions or animations, the DVD listing disappeared altogether in February 2015 – only for it to re-appear on 1 September.

A tweet by Doctor Who Magazine confirmed that the listing was legitimate, stating, “DWM has learned the 1967 story The Underwater Menace (of which Episodes 2 & 3 survive) will be released on DVD after all.” However, there is still no word on how the non-existing episodes will be presented – all we have to go on is that DWM will provide “Details soon”.

The DWCA Shop will be making enquiries as to the DVD’s release in Australia.

Guess who’s back at Christmas? Shh, spoilers!

Series 9 of Doctor Who hasn’t even started airing yet, but that hasn’t stopped the BBC from revealing the surprising and significant guest star of this year’s Christmas Special – Alex Kingston’s Professor River Song!

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

The announcement of a new River story is always a bit of a surprise for fans, who can never be sure when the enigmatic archaeologist is going to pop up again – and it appears they’re not the only ones!

“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,” said Kingston.

“I met Peter [Capaldi] 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!”

The special, which begins filming in Cardiff this week, will be written by Steven Moffat, produced by Nikki Wilson and directed by Douglas Mackinnon. Set to air in the UK on 25 December 2015, it will be followed in January by ‘The Diary of River Song’ – River’s very own audio series from Big Finish Productions.

Series 9 to reach Aussie screens on 20 September

Despite the ABC releasing new Doctor Who closer and closer to the UK airtime each year, there’s always some trepidation as to whether our luck will eventually run out.

Happily, the latest trailer for the series reveals that it will be back on Australian screens on Sunday 20 September. The UK broadcast date has previously been announced as Saturday 19 September.

peter-capaldi-in-doctor-whoWhile the trailer does not yet indicate whether Series 9 will be simulcast or not, each episode is guaranteed to reach us less than 24 hours after its UK premiere. The DWCA applauds the ABC for its efforts in bringing the series to our screens and can’t wait to experience it along with all our members.

Results of the DWCA Annual General Meeting 2014-15

The DWCA is pleased to announce the results of its Annual General Meeting, held on Sunday 26 July at Club Burwood, Sydney.

The meeting saw the DWCA committee propose four amendments to the club constitution, which are as follows:

  • Add Section 2.4 to define types of club membership.
  • Re-wording of Section 3 to adjust terminology.
  • Amendment to Section 9.2 – ‘Member Code of Conduct’.
  • Amendment to Section 9.4 to clarify conditions of granting non-paying club membership.

These amendments were all voted in by the attending members. As such, they can be found in the updated version of the constitution located at

The nominees for the 2015-16 DWCA Office Bearers were also announced. As one nomination was received for each position, all were filled with no vote required from the members:

  • President: Lauren Davis
  • Vice President: Tony Cooke
  • Treasurer: Jon Andersen
  • Secretary: Roger Reynolds

The committee would like to thank all those who have supported the club over the past year, with a special thanks to those who were able to attend the AGM.

We would also like to put the call out to anyone who might be interested in contributing to the running of the club, as we’re always keen to bring fresh blood on board. You don’t have to run as an Office Bearer in the election, and you don’t even have to join the committee. But if you think you’ve got something which you can bring to the table, let us know at We’d love to hear from you.