Published on September 9th, 2012 | by Scott Varnham
Martyn Havell: The Bad Wilf Interview
There are so many podcasts out there. Many readers on Kasterborous will be happy to enjoy Christian, James and Brian on the podKast – but what if you need more in your life than that?
You could do worse than listen to the Bad Wilf podcast, and to shed more light on the show we bring you an interview with one of its founding members, Martyn Havell.
Martyn, pleasure to interview you. You and Imran Charles started the Bad Wilf podcast in March of 2010. Since then you and your co-hosts have done over 70 episodes over two years, covering all manner of subjects. How does leaving your main area of expertise affect your audience numbers? Do you get any fans that would rather you stuck exclusively to Doctor Who?
Thank you for having me. I’m normally the one doing the interviewing, so this is a new experience for me.It feels new and exciting to be branching out into new areas, after two years it was getting hard to talk exclusively about Doctor Who. We have other areas of interest and thought we would explore those a little further.
The audience numbers have actually increased quite drastically, since we started covering non-who related topics. I think people are enjoying our new avenue; the ones who aren’t haven’t gotten in touch. We will cover Doctor Who again, but I think it will only be when the series is current.
How do you find time for podcasting with a job and two children, one of whom is a fairly new addition to your family?
Yeah, we have a new addition to the family, Tegan Rose. Not named after characters in Doctor Who, just a happy coincidence, my girlfriend, a non-Who fan picked it.
Time has always been a factor for us, for the first year of the podcast, I was a shift worker and Imran worked a 9-5. Now, Imran is a shift worker and I work a 9-5. We bought in Pete and Ash to help and ease the pressure from us, but as great as they are, they’re equally as busy as Imran and I. We’ve only had six episodes out since March.
We’re working on a schedule that will make it easier for everyone. We’ve been talking about getting together once a month and bulk recording enough content for 3 or 4 episodes.
In a post on your website a year or so ago (hell, we probably covered it on the site), you told the internet the reason why Christopher Eccleston left Doctor Who. What kind of reaction did it get?
I couldn’t have predicted the reaction that story would bring us. I owe all of that to Cameron from Blogtor Who, he retweeted the link to the story to his 20,000 twitter followers and it took off from there. I was about to go to bed when he did it, I didn’t sleep at all that night. I just kept hitting refresh, every minute and reading the next 60 tweets I received. The website had an extra 17,000 hits that night. Three days after I posted the news on the site, every national newspaper in the country ran it as their own, except the Guardian.They gave full credit to the site.
I called a few of the papers that ripped it off; they all gave the same answer “an agency bought it to us”. I couldn’t get any of them to tell me which agency; I’m assuming it’s the same as when they say “an insider”. Having something you’ve worked on stolen from you hurts. It sounds like a cliché but, it isn’t the money, it’s about the credit.
How did you meet the other members of Bad Wilf?
I went to school with Imran, I knew of him. But I had never actually spoken to him. He was the schools kid, everyone had a story about him. We didn’t actually meet until December 31st, 1999. We were at a mutual friend’s house for a party and we’ve been friends ever since.
Pete I met at a Doctor Who pub meet about 2 years ago. He initially came on board just to review audiobooks for us. Imran and I heard his first review and decided we needed him on the show. Ash is a radio DJ and long time friend of Pete. Our latest addition is Chris, Chris and I worked in a cinema back together in 2001.
Chris is unique in our line-up; he doesn’t like Doctor Who and will only be coming on for film reviews.
What podcasts influenced the decision to do your own?
Originally, podcasts seemed to be something that only celebrities such as Ricky Gervias, or Kevin Smith did. It wasn’t until I was searching for a classic Doctor Who on iTunes, that I saw a podcast section. I clicked on one that happened to be the DWO whocast, hosted at the time by Tony Gallichan and Trevor Gensh. I then realised that normal people had podcasts.
From there, I discovered staggering stories, geeksyndicate, the flashing blade etc. DWO and Geeksyndicate were instrumental in making me want to podcast.
What other projects do you have in the pipeline at the moment?
Nothing in the pipeline at the moment. But, we are going to try to put in more work in to the site/podcast. About a year ago Imran and I tried launching another podcast together, but we then quickly realised that we didn’t have time for one podcast, let alone two. I also tried to launch a podcast with someone else that got about 6 episodes in and real life got in the way. I’d like to have more podcasts on the site, even if I wasn’t directly involved.
This one’s two questions in one, really – who’s the nicest celebrity you’ve met, and who would you like to meet? Bernard Cribbins has to be in there somewhere!
Everyone we’ve interviewed has been lovely. Matt Smith is by far the coolest person on the planet. My personal favourite is Eve Myles. We spent 7hrs getting drunk with her in North Wales, she was due at a signing and Q&A the next day and she pulled it off without a hitch, I don’t know how she did it.
As for future guests, Bernard Cribbins of course. We started in honour of him, so getting him would be a dream come true.
I would also love David Tennant, purely for the reason that if he did come on, I would have then had Doctor’s 8,9,10 and 11 on the podcast.
And finally, what are your hopes for the future of Doctor Who? Any stories you’d like to see them do?
I had a basic idea for a story. I thought it would be interesting if, for the 50th anniversary they landed on a planet that was in black and white. Or, if they did a [Star Trek] DS9 thing and put the actors in a classic episode, that would be amazing. I’m sure whatever Steven Moffat gives us will be brilliant.
Big thanks to Martin for chatting with us – head to badwilf.co.uk to start enjoying the Bad Wilf podcasts!