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Published on September 28th, 2011 | by Christian Cawley

Confidential Axed!

It’s a sad day for fans of behind the scenes shenanigans and the talking heads of Doctor Who producers, creatives and stars as the BBC have announced that Doctor Who Confidential will not return after the current run.

This may come as a surprise to some readers and viewers, but the writing has long been on the wall for the BBC Three show since the broadcaster announced that changes would be made to the channel. With BBC Four also under threat and a big question over whether or not BBC Three might survive the cuts (calling into question the naming policy!) DWC is sadly a victim of circumstance, and its status as a bit of a rarity on the channel – a long running show that isn’t a past-its-sell-by-date sitcom or a reality show – has done it no favours when it comes to this decision.

BBC controller Zai Bennett has announced that the show will come to an end with the current run. A spokeswoman for the BBC said:

“Doctor Who Confidential has been a great show for BBC3 over the years but our priority now is to build on original British commissions, unique to the channel.”

Hang on: Doctor Who Confidential is both unique and British, so that’s quite a strange piece if reasoning…

Note that there is a chance that Doctor Who Confidential may return on another channel or in a different format at a later date. Also note that Doctor Who naysayers will jump on this as some sort of justification that the series itself is in trouble, something that is simply not the case (and believe us, should it ever be the case, we’ll be pointing the finger).

(Thanks to Bionic_Tangfastic)


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About the Author


A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

13 Responses to Confidential Axed!

  1. avatar Mr Brak says:

    It’s been a while since DWC has much of interest to report on though. The rare gem recently was Gatiss talking about the difference in writing for each Doctors’ personality. Mostly it’s irrelevant on-set ‘whackiness’ which got tired quite early on.
    Put the money saved on this into bringing back Totally Doctor Who or something a bit more creative.

  2. avatar Francis Cave says:

    Personally, I can never get enough of Matt Smith pointing at the camera saying “Oh look, its Confidential. Hi there!” while Karen Gillan prances about making silly faces in the background…

  3. avatar zarbisupremo says:

    I haven’t watched Confidential since the end of Series 3.

  4. avatar tommyscot says:

    The content of Confidential was always patchy and a little too lite for my taste. I do miss the exposition of script to set; the taste of the reality of the editor’s rationale when it comes to telling the story in the time available- while satisfying the writers. Not enough of that in recent times.

    I’d like to see the return of the red button commentary that RTD employed. That was surely cheap enough.

    Thinking of cost cutting- why not allow media students and interns the chance to make a Confidential style web-cast? Low cost, supporting young talent too.

    • I would be very surprised if we don’t get a new website focusing on this, official or otherwise…

  5. avatar stlshawn says:

    OK, Someone give me a camera, I’ll do it for FREE! Seriously! I will Move across the ocean, and make Confidential for FREE!

    It’s become a part of the show for a lot of us. To watch the episode, then Confidential a couple days afterward.

    Seriously, how much could it possibly cost to produce DWC? It’s what, maybe four people including the announcer!
    I would bet we could get free voice overs, and some retired cameramen, and this entire site is filled with good writers who would do it FREE!

    OK, even if it’s not getting immediate ratings it’s just so interesting. It has given my children a very real insight into how DW is made and what these people do. It’s a mini-documentary that is simply fascinating. It’s educational! It’s good for people! It’s wonderful!

    Great googly moogly! I so hope it comes back in some form.

  6. avatar Gruff says:

    Hmmm I watch and record all the 45 minute Confidentials that I possibly can, but it has been getting a bit boring with the cast being a bit Sixth Form in between takes, which however true to life is not in the least insightful. Shame as their characters and performances are greater than this real life stuff. Perhaps it can come back in a refreshed format which links old with nu Who in such a way that can educate younger fans of the rich history of the show and show us all how the show gets from the ideas stage to the screen.

  7. avatar Alex says:

    The thing about Confidential is it really made viewers of the show part of the family. Even the Cutdowns had more quality and spirit to them than a lot of similar behind-the-scenes productions I’ve seen on DVDs for other shows. And especially these past couple years the stars have really gotten hands-on with the show, from recording video diaries to even performing skits. (Not that they weren’t involved before – David Tennant even directed one, you’ll recall).

    True, the decision not to release the full versions to DVD may have hurt somewhat. But some PBS stations in the US are now airing them, and many fans will have viewed the full versions via alternate methods.

    One thing I love about Doctor Who is that it’s the most thoroughly documented TV series ever. I’m confident in that statement – in order to have the equivalent, the original Star Trek would need to produce a 79 documentaries of equal length to the episodes. And even then – Confidential made more episodes! (And then add in the behind-the-scenes DVD featurettes for the classic series, Torchwood Declassified, and the late lamented Totally Doctor Who as well.) It’s a shame we won’t be able to enjoy this level of in-depth coverage anymore. Some of my favorite moments in TV, period, this past year involved Karen, Arthur and Matt spoofing TV interview shows with their antics. The show will be missed. Maybe 2 Entertain will be able to clear up the rights and put out a “full series” set of the complete episodes?

  8. avatar Krumstets says:

    DWC has run it’s course. It was a nice idea while it lasted,but really there is nothing new to say.
    As long as there are excellent websites like this then who needs DWC?
    Not me, that’s for sure.

  9. avatar Gaz says:

    A full series boxed set of uncut episodes from the last 6 years, including specials, would be incredible. I would buy it for sure. I love the show and it annoys me that they get cut down for the DVD sets.

    I mean they announced who the 11th Doctor was going to be, right there on DWC.

    Add @SaveDWC on Twitter and sign the petition they post in order to try and keep the show around.

  10. avatar Andrew says:

    I’ve only watched about 2 DWC this series. It’s far too long and nothing but the same behind the scenes shenanigans, setting up stunts and special effects. It’s especially a worry when they have to explain plots of the episodes.

    The 10 minute cut downs on the DVD extras are quite long enough.

  11. avatar Mugen Pharoah says:

    This is a bit of a surprise really – but, this series some episodes have been painful…

    remember the extended sequence during The Doctor’s Wife Confidential when it followed Neil Gaiman having breakfast, and then interviewed the man who cooks the bacon? NIce enough chap but odd odd odd.

    Also Russell Tovey, good enough actor though he is, seems to be half asleep doing the voiceover.

    Still in the same episode as the bacon man, we did get a glimpse of the eighties TARDIS in the design workshop…ready for the 2013 special year maybe.

    Still I will miss it.

  12. avatar Gazza100 says:

    It was a bad move to make it as long as the programme it was covering and really it’s just dull now. And the makers don’t seem to care about what’s on screen. Where they could talk about something of interest, they miss the opportunity. I watched last weeks, and was soooooo bored. Why was that? Where was the look at the return of the Cybermats? Their history? Their previous episodes? Nowhere. And hello? Lynda Baron? She was in stories with the 5th and 1st Doctors? No interview? No look back at what the show used to be? Anyone would think this is a new show with no history. Oh, what do you mean it’s nearly 50 years old? They are missing opportunity left, right and centre. Rethink or let it go.

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