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Published on July 9th, 2007 | by Simon Mills

Kopic’s News Round, Issue #1

Well, here I am ensconced in my own murky corner of Kasterborous Towers for a few weeks, whilst the busy Mr Cawley takes a well earned break. It has been a rather busy few weeks news-wise, what with the “The Last of The Time Lords” marking the end of the most consistently high-quality series of Doctor Who to date. And he does needs his rest, bless him, not like the high energy John Barrowman or the ever gleeful David Tennant…

Anyway, on with the news. Did you see David Tennant getting down and funky with the hottest pop and rock acts at the Live Earth gig on Saturday? Russell Brand introduces him as what sounds like “Doctoroo”, then DT goes on to quip “back in 2005 when I was Christopher Eccleston…” and then spouts forth on global warming for a minute or two before introducing The Pussycat Dolls. An excellent run-down of the event is here at The Sunday Mirror and there are some videos here (DT’s intro) and here (this is the first part of five interview clips) on YouTube for your viewing pleasure. I like the joke Jonathan Ross cracks about harnessing the power of John Barrowman to power a small community – he’s such an energetic and full of life person that you can just imagine this actually working. Well, I can, anyway.

In more David Tennant news, it seems he could well be playing Hamlet (or is that Hamnet?) for the RSC in a production which could run next summer depending on David’s schedule – if he’s not busy filming series 5 (here’s hoping that he is!) or the Christmas special for 2008, that is. Baz Bamigboye of the Daily Mail also thinks David Tennant is the best Doctor ever:

Time-travelling David Tennant – the best of all the Dr Whos – is in negotiations to play Hamlet for the Royal Shakespeare Company.

To be, or not to be the Danish prince, that is the question for Mr Tennant, who starts shooting his third series as the Time Lord in Cardiff on Monday.

The plan being developed by RSC artistic chief Michael Boyd is for Mr Tennant to play Hamlet in a production he wants to direct next summer. The exact timing will depend on whether the actor will do a fourth batch of episodes as the Converse All Stars-sporting Doctor.

Speaking of being the best ever, the UKTV Drama channel will be showing some stories from all ten Doctors next weekend for their “Who Is The Greatest Doctor Who?” special event. Their website lists all the stories that will be shown (including the rarely seen original “pilot” that was never broadcast) along with some facts and video clips. There’s also a link at the bottom of that page where you can vote online for who YOU think is the greatest. Go on. You know you want to…

On to the Christmas special now, “The Voyage of the Damned” is set to have Clive Swift amongst it’s cast members, reports the Jewish Telegraph (via Outpost Gallifrey). Clive was a founder member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, no less, and you may remember him from his turn as Jobel in the sixth Doctor story, “Revelation of the Daleks”. If you don’t, then you’ll more likely recognise him as Richard Bucket from the UK sitcom “Keeping Up Appearances”.

In more Christmas special news, I’ve just discovered that Kylie is half Welsh – her parents are from Maesteg, so this explains why she was cast. It’s her Welsh blood and nothing to do with being a diminutive diva that will keep men and women of all persuasions watching, regardless of story. As the special is set to include an appearance of The Titanic, we can be quite sure that at least it won’t be yet another display of robot Santa infested festive hokum. The Titanic only sailed between 12th April 1912 and 14th/15th April 1912, so not much in the way of Christmas festivities there!

Billie Piper, it seems, may well be getting married (or saying “I DWHO” according to The Sunday Mirror) to her boyfriend Laurence Fox (son of James) at the end of July. The pair met while both starring in “Treats” and soon became an item. Kopic and the rest of the Kasterborous team wish her and Laurence (henceforth known as “The Luckiest Man On The Planet”) well in this new adventure!

Series three has now premiered in the US on the Sci Fi channel with “The Runaway Bride” and “Smith and Jones”. The ever wonderful freemaagyeman.com has a couple of articles on display showing the sort of coverage that Freema and the show are getting in the US and Canada. Lots of news outlets list Dr Who amongst their highlights to watch and there’s also a rather nice article about Freema at The Star which says of her being cast in the role,

…her unprecedented, colour-blind casting has had much more than the requisite impact. “I’m so proud,” she beams. “It’s a massive achievement. I’m really honoured. I mean, the show is such an institution …

“The part wasn’t specified as being `non-white’ – there were all sorts of people, I gather, going up for it. It’s just such a reassuring and reflective sign of the times. At the same time, it is so great to get this fabulous female part that isn’t synonymous with my colour. It’s not stereotypical in any way.

The article touches on the subject of minorities several times and mentions that Freema as Martha is the first to be of a “visible minority” but also mentions Mickey. However, he is discounted as he only “travelled briefly” with the Doctor in the last series. Of David Tennant she is quoted as saying,

“There is not one day he does not walk on that set absolutely beaming … whether they are stringing him up, or blowing him up, or whatever. I mean, complete glee … It’s infectious, really.”

Can you imagine what a dream job it would be working with David Tennant and John Barrowman? Such joy and enthusiasm for life and the show itself.

Now that filming is well under way for the next series of Torchwood, we find that John Barrowman has been visiting CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (isn’t that a cocktail made with coconut rum and pineapple?) and there was a podcast on the subject, too, an excerpt of which is on YouTube (of course, it is – everything finds it’s way on to YouTube!) which also says you can download the whole thing from iTunes by searching for “LHC Podcast” or you can grab it from the http://www.cernpodcast.com/ site yourself.

Barrowman said “It’s nice to be able to see where all these questions that we have hopefully one day will be answered”

“And its nice to know that the scientists, the guys and girls who work here, still have questions too. No one knows the answer, that’s the good thing… except Captain Jack!”

Meanwhile, that cheeky scamp James Marsters (the mockney Spike from Buffy) revealed recently at the Fangoria convention, according to Torchwood.TV, that his episode would see his character doing something “omnisexual”. I’m wondering if this is a hint at a link to Capt Jack’s origins in the 50th century…? Or just more blatant attempts by the production team to shout to the world, “look we’re a grown up TV show!”? Also at Torchwood.TV we see that Torchwood Declassified is to get a new producer next year.

I’ll finish my first set of round-up duties for Kasterborous with this quote from this rather good article in iF Magazine, on the new series being aired in the US,

While it’s not the best season of DOCTOR WHO thus far, it features the best performances of any lead in this series to date – and just like sex, even when it’s bad, it’s still pretty damn good.

Simon R. Mills,
Editor and Chief News’bot of Kopic’s Doctor Who and Torchwood News

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