Category Archives: Doctor Who

Space and Time in Great Britain: Doctor Who teaser, and the first British spaceport

My two favorite things, Doctor Who and spaceflight, get to come together today.  😉

First, of course, a belated look at the teaser trailer that dropped last weekend during the World Cup:

It reveals basically nothing, but I’m still doing my happy dance.  😉

And then, there’s an exciting new announcement from the UK government, Lockheed Martin, and British rocketry startup Orbex: the first orbital launch site in the UK has been selected.  On the A’Mhoine Peninsula in Sutherland, on Scotland’s northern coast, the site will be well positioned for polar and sun-synchronous launches.  In addition to the already agreed-upon use of Orbex’s still-in-development small launch vehicle, Lockheed is also talking with Rocket Labs about using their Electron launch vehicle.  Here’s Lockheed’s own little teaser trailer on the subject:

And that’s not even it for Brit-Space!  Virgin Orbit, which is aiming for their first orbital launch possibly as soon as next month out of the Mojave Air & Space Port, is now also developing plans to operate out of Cornwall as well.  Being run by Brits, they have a very strong interest in bringing Cosmic Girl and her under-wing launch vehicle home.  😉  They hope to thereby appeal to European and British satellite manufacturers, by being able to skip a costly and time consuming transatlantic shipment of their spacecraft to a launch site.  Here’s *their* teaser trailer, for Spaceport Cornwall:

It sure is an exciting time, isn’t it?  😉


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Waiting for Series 11: Introducing the new sound of Doctor Who

Almost the entire crew is changing along with the cast for “Doctor Who” — but don’t be afraid; it’s been through this many, many times before.  😉  The latest addition is the composer, since Murray Gold announced that after ten seasons (plus the year of David Tennant specials and the 50th anniversary), he’s moving on.  And they’ve found someone really special: a relatively young but extremely talented Nigerian-British composer named Segun Akinola.  His work has a sweeping, cinematic style that I’m really looking forward to hearing more of.  I’m especially eager to see what he decides to do with the theme song, reimagined so many times since Delia Derbyshire first reworked Ron Grainer’s theme into pure magic.  But we will have to wait a while.  😉  No premier date has yet been released, but it will be at least a few more months.

In the meantime, check out Akinola’s other work on his Soundcloud page!  It’s amazing to just sit and listen to.

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Just sixteen days until DOCTOR WHO!!!!

The Christmas Special “Twice Upon a Time”, Peter Capaldi’s swansong as the Doctor, is just over two weeks away now.  And the BBC has released another trailer, this one showing rather a bit more detail:

Whatever the alien menace is this time, it’s obviously got some teeth to it — what could it be?  What could be freezing time?  And what, exactly, does “freezing time” even mean in this context?

Now, we know there will be a British officer from World War I, and of course the First Doctor is appearing during the events of “The Tenth Planet”, which is set in 1986.  (Alas, that was the future at the time it first aired, back in 1966.  Today, many of those watching won’t even have been born in 1986!)  So something is causing time to merge, or slip, or otherwise get jumbled . . . what could that be?

Well, it’s apparently not the Cybermen, even though 12 just escaped them, and arguably so has 1 . . . the creatures debuted in “The Tenth Planet”.  (By the way, it’s rather clever to include 1.  Due to William Hartnell’s declining health, his part had been kept to an absolute minimum, so during that adventure, he’s often not to be seen.  Perhaps this story will explain where he went!)  Instead, the BBC has hinted something about “enchanted glass people”, who steal their victims out of frozen time.  So perhaps they use time freezing merely as a means of capture, and are not expecting to find a couple of Time Lords (or one Time Lord twice over, anyway), who are capable of maneuvering out of such a situation.

So who are the enchanted glass people?

A transparent version of the Weeping Angels?

Something like the Auditors in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series, beings not properly part of this universe but annoyed by its unpredictability and striving to make it more orderly?

Kidnappers, a la the Carnival in Space, capturing specimens for their amusement?

Or something more nefarious, something seeking to remove specific individuals surgically, so as to alter the timeline?

The Vardans?  (Nah, they are the only race in history ever to be defeated by the intellectual might of the Sontarans, after all.  But they do look a bit glassy, and they have tried to mess with time before.)

And what if the glass people are working for someone else?


Christmas can’t come soon enough!

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Happy Doctor Who Day!

Fifty four years ago today, in a junkyard on Totter’s Lane, two schoolteachers worried about their young student wandered into a police box, and everything changed…..

So that makes today Doctor Who Day.  😉  Anniversary of the most extraordinary science fiction series ever recorded.  And in honor of that, Tom Baker has recorded a message:

(Yeah, I know in Britain it’s been over for a while now.  That’s the great thing about time zones — holidays get to last a bit longer!)

(Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving too!)

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Waiting for Series Eleven: introducing Team TARDIS!

The BBC has announced the new cast of regulars for Series 11.  There are three regulars being added, in addition to the new Doctor, but it’s not clear whether all of them will be traveling on board the TARDIS, 0r whether some will be homebodies like Danny, or Donna’s mother and grandfather, or Rose’s mother.  I’m calling them “team TARDIS” anyway for now.  😉

The new cast include Bradley Walsh as “Graham”, who will be joining Jodie Whitaker’s Doctor #13 on the TARDIS, Mandip Gill as Yasmin, and Tosin Cole as Ryan.  What role Yasmin and Ryan will play is currently unclear, but we’ll find out next year!  (Dang, that seems so far off still…..)

Left to right, their characters are Yasmin, Graham, the 13th Doctor, and Graham.

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Waiting for Christmas: Doctor Who 2017 Christmas Trailer Is Out!

At ComicCon, the BBC premiered the trailer for this year’s Christmas special, and Peter Capaldi’s swansong.  The title is “Twice Upon a Time” and it’s a bona fide multiple Doctor adventure — the Twelfth, of course, but also the First, as portrayed by David Bradley.  We know very little, except that it’s set in World War One and something is wrong with time — also, neither incarnation of the Doctor wants to regenerate (confirming that for One, it’s happening alongside the events of “The Tenth Planet”, a clever use of the fact that the First Doctor was oddly absent for much of that serial, due to William Hartnell’s illness).  It will also feature yet another performance from Mark Gatiss, and a previously-kept-secret final appearance by Pearl Mackie as Bill!  I am so excited and so thrilled, and I love this trailer.  Now I just have to wait five months…..

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The Thirteenth Doctor is Revealed!

SQUEEEEEE!!!!!  I am so excited!  Now begins the long wait to the Christmas Special and then Series Eleven….

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