Old Wine in New Skins

Thoughts on re-presentations of vintage Doctor Who In the run-up to Doctor Who’s sixtieth anniversary last month, two announcements in particular took this fan somewhat by surprise. Firstly, accompanying the release of the bulk of 20th century episodes onto the UK’s publicly-funded streaming service BBC iPlayer, came a brand new spin-off series exclusive to that […]

The Picard Manoeuvre

I want to review CBS’s latest Star Trek series, Star Trek: Picard. But first I have to set the scene, about my relationship with Star Trek, and a potted guide to its history for those unfamiliar.

XOM and the question of music, part 3

In Review: XOM’s classic Rockyoke Part Three: Another Overload The Boar’s Head, Kidderminster, 23 March 2019 Kidderminster, described by Pevsner, the art and architecture historian, as “uncommonly devoid of visual pleasure and architectural interest”, can claim some musical heritage as part of the Midlands scene. Robert Plant played some of his early gigs here, while […]

XOM and the question of music, part 2

In Review: XOM’s Rock ‘N’ Roll Sing-along Part Two: The Greatest Gift British Oak, Stirchley: 20th December 2018 Christmas comes but once a year, and as Christopher Hitchens remarked, you can’t get away from it then, like a one-party state, with its regulation songs, symbols and, ‘sickly Santa Claus obsequies’. Contrary to popular belief, even […]

XOM and the question of music

In Review: XOM’s Rockyoke About 400 years ago, when I was an undergraduate, it was my pleasure to make the acquaintance of John Sloboda, professor of psychology with a particular interest in the psychology of music. For Professor Sloboda, music is “a way of defining community”: My eyes were really opened to this when I […]

Prequel Smequel.

It may not be unusual in a Doctor Who drama for the audience to be shown reveals before the Doctor.  It does strike me as unusual in some of Moffat’s Who when the audience finds out things the characters will never know. The final shot of ‘The Girl in the Fireplace’ reveals a crucial piece […]

The Ambassadors of Death

Here’s Gary Gillatt’s review of the curious Jon Pertwee Doctor Who story The Ambassadors of Death, newly restored on DVD. Great review which immediately impressed me by telling me something I didn’t know I knew about Season Seven. Confined to Earth, each seven-parter has the Doctor explore ” all three dimensions still available to him.” […]

Christmas Countdown

In review: Doctor Who 2012 Christmas Prequels Ah, the Doctor Who Christmas Special, instant tradition invented in 2005 with The brilliant Christmas Invasion, followed each year with variations on traditional Christmas film styles: a midwinter’s journey, from screw-ball comedy via blockbuster disaster and mock epic, to the current mode of romantic and literate sf-fantasy with […]

Loving Angels Instead

In review: Doctor Who The Angels Take Manhattan TX: 29 September 2012 http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01n70f3 Some died. Not them, Brian. Never them – the Doctor, The Power Of Three I wasn’t thinking of anything quite so…long term – Amy, Flesh and Stone SO the big news this week, as covered by the Guardian, was the release of […]

The Power Of Three

In Review: Doctor Who The Power of Three TX: 22 September 2012. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01n2tmc Infinity begins with the third person. Michel Maffesoli, Le Temps des tribus In the round, I like Chris Chibnall’s stuff. His work suggests a lively and imaginative writer. 42, his debut Doctor Who story, is excellent in my opinion, Countrycide feels like Robert […]