DWCA Western Sydney Tavern – on again 12 March

It’s back on 12 March 2021 – the next DWCA Western Sydney Tavern! You can meet up and hang out with organizer Dallas Jones and other Who fans from about 6.30pm at the Lone Pine Tavern, Rooty Hill, located at 15 Rooty Hill Road, Rooty Hill, NSW. The plan is for attendees to meet in the dining area, so look for a table with a TARDIS model. The Lone Pine Tavern is within a short distance of Rooty Hill Station for those people who want to come along via public transport and the venue has plenty of parking for those coming by car. The more the merrier!

Books and Magazines Galore

Without any new Who on our screens for some time, a variety of publishers are working overtime to ensure there is plenty of reading material available for fans in the interim. The latest issue of Doctor Who Magazine (562) features a focus on illustrators and their role in visualising the Doctor Who universe. For anyone who has seen The Dalek Book and The Dalek World publications from the 1960s, you’ll instantly recognise the ever so slightly wrong illustration of a Dalek, recreated for the DWM cover (complete with alien writing on the head, which was actually replicated from an image with an on set post-it note from the Director, stuck on during rehearsals just so he could tell the Daleks apart!). The article features contributions from such illustrators as Chris Achilléos, Colin Howard, Martin Geraghty, Stuart Crouch, Anthony Dry and Anthony Lamb. Plus there are a slew of other articles and features in the issue as well, including an interview with John Lloyd about an unmade script he wrote for the show that is soon to be released as a Big Finish audio.

Other publications from the makers of DWM include a new series titled Doctor Who Chronicles. The series will focus on pivotal years of the show’s history, with in depth analysis of the milestone moments of that year. The first to be released is 1965 – the year of Dalekmania! These follow issue 561 of DWM which focused on Target books (new and old) and  the recent reprint of The Dalek Chronicles comic book series.

New Target books are due out this month, including novelisations of such stories (reissued in the Target format if released before) as the Eighth Doctor TV Movie, Resurrection of the Daleks, Revelation of the Daleks, The Pirate Planet, Dalek, The Crimson Horror and The Witchfinders. Plus BBC Books are bringing out The Ruby’s Curse – A River Song / Melody Malone Mystery, written by none other than Alex Kingston! And Candy Jar Books have announced the second novel in series eight of their Lethbridge-Stewart series, Fear Frequency written by George Ivanoff.

There are a number of non-fiction books hitting the shelves as well, including a book from Fantom Publishing that looks at the life of Doctor Who Director Douglas Camfield, simply titled Directed by Douglas Camfield. Also, the long out of print behind-the-scenes book Script Doctor by classic series showrunner Andrew Cartmel has not only been reissued but also updated, with a new introduction by Steven Moffat, delivering the ultimate inside look at Doctor Who from 1986 to 1989.

So there are plenty of great books for fans to dive into while we are all awaiting new episodes, animated reconstructions and those beautiful Blu-Ray box sets!

The Doctor Returns on Blu-Ray

The expanding range of Doctor Who – The Collection on Blu-Ray continues in 2021 with more releases from the classic era of Doctor Who. Jon Pertwee is back in the Season 8 collection, as is Sylvester McCoy in Season 24. From Autons to Tetraps, these collections highlight two very different eras of the show and continue to bring fans unrelentingly comprehensive editions with a slew of old and new material available for the first time in one complete package. Plus the tradition of creating new short films to advertise the releases has seen more classic era actors reprise their roles and reunite.

The Season 8 release contains an eight-disc box set with such special features as Behind the Sofa with Katy Manning, Stewart Bevan, Janet Fielding, Sarah Sutton, Sacha Dhawan and Anjli Mohindra, A Devils Weekend featuring Katy Manning and John Levene on a personal trip back to Aldbourne where The Daemons was filmed, The Direct Route with directors Michael Briant, Graeme Harper and Tim Combe on road trip to filming locations, a feature on Terrance Dicks, an extended version of the first episode of The Claws of Axos, a 90 minute version of The Daemons, studio footage and 5.1 surround sound options for Terror of the Autons and The Daemons.

The Season 24 release contains extended versions, 5.1 surround sound and isolated score options on all stories, previously unseen material, Behind the Sofa with Sylvester McCoy, Bonnie Langford, Sophie Aldred, Peter Davison, Janet Fielding, Sarah Sutton, Colin Baker and Michael Jayston and The Doctor’s Table featuring Sylvester McCoy, Bonnie Langford, Sophie Aldred and Clive Merrison discussing the making of the season.

There are no announcements yet about First and Second Doctor full season releases of The Collection on Blu-Ray, but the Radio Times has confirmed that the next two animated productions due for release in 2021 are Evil of the Daleks and The Abominable Snowmen. The completion of these would leave four episodes of The Smugglers, four episodes of The Highlanders and two episodes of The Underwater Menace remaining to animate to complete Season Four (the transition from William Hartnell to Patrick Troughton). Season Five would still require one episode from The Web of Fear and four from The Wheel in Space (or at least three and a half, since animation was completed for the first part of Episode One of Wheel back in 2018). Then there is always the hope that Patrick Troughton’s final season could be completed with the animation of six episode story The Space Pirates for a Season Six release. No matter which gets completed first, the future certainly looks bright for Doctor Who fans to be able to find new life in the timeless classics of yesteryear.

Fury from the Deep returns

The long lost classic Fury from the Deep is set to return with a three disc Blu-ray release containing all new animation set to the original audio track. The set will contain the surviving clips from the original 1968 production as well as full colour and black and white versions of the animated story. Three of the original cast members, Frazer Hines, June Murphy and Brian Cullingford, revisit the filming locations with production assistant Michael Briant, assistant floor manager Margot Hayhoe and helicopter pilot Mike Smith in a special feature about the making of the show. There are also archive interviews, audio commentaries and more. The set is due for release in the UK on 14 September but there is no date available yet for the Australian release. The DWCA Shop will obtain copies as soon as possible and we will spread the news when the release date is known. The updated animated version of Power of the Daleks has just been released in Australia and is currently available along with Jodie Whittaker’s Series 12.

Eccleston Returns

While the short-lived tenure of Christopher Eccleston’s much loved Ninth Doctor has been revisited in comics, audios and even on the small screen through cameos in The Name of the Doctor and The Day of the Doctor, the man himself has thus far resisted the invitation to return to the role. Until now! “After 15 years it will be exciting to revisit the Ninth Doctor’s world, bringing back to life a character I love playing,” Eccleston commented as the news broke that Big Finish would be releasing twelve full-cast audio adventures across four audio box-sets. The first box-set is due to be released in May 2021, but Big Finish are keeping details about the content quiet for the time being. Whatever the stories contain, it will be exciting to hear this much loved character brought to life once again by the man himself!

Two Day Australian Watch-along this weekend (4 and 5 June)

No matter where you are in Australia or how you are impacted by COVID-19, this weekend you can come together with fellow fans in a two day watch-along marathon, organised by past DWCA president Dallas Jones! Full details of the epic two day event are included below.

THE 4TH & 5TH AUSTRALIAN DOCTOR WHO WATCH-ALONGS

4TH “DALEK” & “THE LONG GAME” ON SATURDAY JULY 4TH
5TH
“TERROR OF THE ZYGONS” ON SATURDAY JULY 11TH
HOW THEY WILL WORK

For Dalek and The Long Game we understand that you have the option to watch it streaming on either Stan or Amazon Prime. You can also watch it on a DVD you have bought or on a copy that you had recorded previously for your own personal use.

For Terror of the Zygons you will have to watch it on a DVD you have bought or on a copy that you had recorded previously for your own personal use.

The “watch-along” part will be where you can post comments, on

or on

or on

Twitter

  • By posting your comments using the tag #youwouldmakeagooddalek for the 4th Watch-along
  • By posting your comments using the tag #waveatentacle for the 5th Watch-along.

These comments should be about what you are watching and also will allow you, if you wish, to interact with other people who will also be posting comments.

So at 8.00pm AEST (6.00 pm WA, 7.30 pm SA & NT) you can start playing, on July 4th, Dalek followed by The Long Game; and on July 11th, you can start paying, The Terror of the Zygons; and then post your comments, as the story(ies) unfold(s), and interact(ing), if you wish, with what other people have commented.

Watchalong Tomb of the Cybermen Saturday 27 June

If you’ve been looking on enviously at the overseas watchalong events taking place during the COVID-19 Lockdown but have been unable to take part due to the crazy impossible time difference between the UK and Australia, then here’s something for you! Past DWCA President Dallas Jones is following up on his two successful Australian watchalongs with a third event on Saturday 27 June – and this time he has chosen one of the true greats of classic Who, the epic, gothic and totally cool (pun intended) Tomb of the Cybermen. Check out the details below to take part.

Life During Lockdown

One of the more extraordinary things to come from Doctor Who fandom during the time of COVID-19 was the creation of a variety of new videos, written and performed by the official stars and creators of Doctor Who. These videos were released on YouTube, timed to coincide with the Lockdown shared watching events of various classic episodes. The project was founded by Emily Cook from Doctor Who Magazine, proposing the idea that fans simulcast watch-alongs of classic stories. What started as supporting the watch-alongs with live tweeting, interviews and other online material, quickly developed into a series of funny, beautiful, poignant and moving short films. Not only did they revisit classic stories in new ways, but they contextualised the importance of Doctor Who and its fandom in the midst of a real life worldwide crisis. Often discounted as frivolous by those who don’t see the attraction, fandom has in fact never been more relevant, proven by the unifying and thought-provoking way in which it has reached out to fans around the world during this time. The full set of videos can be found on the Doctor Who Lockdown YouTube page, but some key examples are included below.

 

Power of the Daleks Reaminated

Fans of Doctor Who were overjoyed back in 2016 when Power of the Daleks became the first full missing story to be treated to an animated reconstruction. It was released worldwide in cinemas, online platforms, DVD and Blu-ray to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the story’s first transmission. However, due to the tight time frame to meet that anniversary date, the animators felt that some aspects were rushed. They’ve also been polishing their art further through subsequent releases such as Macra Terror and The Faceless Ones. So it was that when the BBC was casting around for another 2020 release from the Second Doctor’s era, to celebrate the 100th year of Patrick Troughton’s birth (born 25 March 1920) the idea was floated to create a new definitive animated version of the story. Completely rebuilt and with all new special features, it will see release in the UK in July this year (with the Australian release date yet to be confirmed). Many fans were also excited to see that The Highlanders was listed as a special feature in some press releases, however it has since been confirmed that this is not the case. The intention had been to include the audio track of The Highlanders, but there were already so many special features there wasn’t adequate room to add it in the end and those plans have had to be dropped. There is as yet no news on what further animated reconstructions are in the works following Fury from the Deep (due out later this year) but there are certainly more in the works. The Highlanders will alas not be one of them, as it has been noted by the animators that the challenge of animating characters in tartan costumes is likely to be put off for as long as possible. While other releases have included both colour and black and white versions of the animated reconstructions, that will not be the case with the new Power of the Daleks. Many of the animation team were less than impressed when BBC America colourised their 2016 version. Seeing the story as a noir style piece, they will be sticking to black and white only for creative reasons on this one. With numerous Troughton releases coming out through 2020 to celebrate 100 years since his birth, perhaps that means 2021 will focus on Hartnell stories instead. The Daleks’ Master Plan perhaps? Well, we can hope…