The Torchwood Institute - A Doctor Who and Torchwood Blog

Wednesday, November 30, 2005


As a point of comparison, the SRP for The League of Gentlemen - The Collection is $99 as well, so I imagine that the "real" price may likely be something similar over time. (It's probably a pretty comparable set in a lot of ways.)

I called it: Doctor Who 2005 direct to US DVD in 2006.

Sci Fi Wire is reporting that the BBC is going to release the 2005 series of Doctor Who directly to DVD here in the USA, skipping over any US cablecast. It looks like it's going to be just what I had hoped for earlier today.

Suggested retail price is $99.98, but I'm sure we'll see some discounting.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Anime, Future of TV, and You-Know-Who

I saw two posts over on Boing Boing [by Cory Doctorow , Xeni Jardin] referencing an article in Fortune about how the Anime companies have embraced technology and fans to make money.

I suspect that this is the model that the BBC should look at when it comes to Doctor Who (and for that matter, Torchwood), circumventing the American cable networks that have to date passed on the new series of Doctor Who -- and while many of the current fans in the US are perhaps older than anime fans, the general target demographics of the new series could be very similar to the Anime demographic. The various fan-made telesnap reconstructions that have been made over the years, where 1960s era audio recordings are matched to old pictures, making episodes the black and white episodes that were deleted by the BBC more available, are in fact very, very similar to fansubs in a lot of ways.

Therefore, my advice to the BBC is this -- get the Region 1 DVD set of the 2005 series out as soon as possible; and go around the Sci-Fi channels or other networks....especially with at least two more new seasons of new Doctor Who, and one of Torchwood...

In fact, genre and niche television producers in general should look at how anime is marketed and sold -- and I think we're seeing some of that already when you get alternative endings for Veronica Mars ending up posted online, or the Children in Need special of Doctor Who posted on the BBC website for a week earlier this month.

Obviously, Doctor Who has been hugely succesful in the UK over the past year -- thankfully, perhaps so successful that the American market isn't as important as it might have been viewed in the 1990s. But still, right now Doctor Who is more like Robbie Williams or the music career of David Hasslehoff -- perhaps big in the UK, but unknown (or largely forgotten) in the US.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Neil Gaiman on Doctor Who

I see that Neil Gaiman (and more particularly his daughter)reviewed the new Doctor Who.

The Doctor Who Effect

There's an interesting article about the upcoming series from UK Television, describing a "Doctor Who effect". One of the things that is perhaps the appropriate comparison to where Doctor Who is in the UK at the moment is something like Lost.

One interesting element about both series is that both have some connection to the tension between dramatic series and reality television. Lost, after all, at first glance appears to be a dramatic version of Survivor. And in the Bad Wolf episode of Doctor Who, the reality television fad is projected into the distant future, with recognizable versions of modern reality television. It's an interesting connection....

It'll be interesting to see which, if any, of these upcoming series will cross over to this country. (Including Doctor Who, of course...)

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Beginning

Appropriately enough for Doctor Who's anniversary, TV Shows On DVD has posted news that the long-awaited Beginning boxset, which contains the first thirteen episodes that started 42 years ago today, from An Unearthly Child to The Brink of Disaster.

According to the Restoration Team, the boxset is also includes a quick summary of Marco Polo, the first story that no longer exists in the BBC archives. Even better, there are going to be several documentaries about the first year of the programme.

And if that's not enough, there are going to be a couple of comedy sketches by new series writer Mark Gatiss and Little Britain's David Walliams from a couple of years ago, which are worth the price of the package alone. And while the restoration team comments that "The Kidnappers" might not be the best fit for this particular DVD, as it's not based around the original years of the series, it's one of my favorite comedy sketches *period*, above and beyond it's Doctor Who connection.

I don't imagine that the people involved in the genesis of Doctor Who 42 years ago would have conceived that people a continent away would be anxiously await a chance to buy these stories *again*, on some strange digital format, at the same time awaiting new episodes of the same series -- but that's the magic of this collection.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Happy 42!

Doctor Who fandom, perhaps more than any other franchise that I can think of, has institutionalized it's anniversary. Even for those of us that aren't in Doctor Who's country of origin recognize it, reaching back to distant memories of seeing The Five Doctors for the first time on November 23, 1983, or the legends of the mythical Chicago conventions held by multiple organizations and groups over the Thanksgiving weekend across three decades. (Chicago TARDIS is the current incarnation. I'm not going this year, but if you're in the area..)

The date is recognized enough that when the series was relaunched earlier this year, they went through the effort of placing the Doctor at the assassination of JFK as a way to connect the new incarnation of the series with the original back in 1963 when An Unearthly Child originally aired.

Doctor Who has had its most successful year pretty much everywhere around except the US over the last year. Hopefully next year we'll get a real invitation to the party, but seeing the success it has had so far has been a great thing to see.

Sunday, November 20, 2005 - News - RACHEL IN LINE FOR DR WHO ROLE

some Torchwood casting gossip

Friday, November 18, 2005

Children In Need

Obviously, one scene is way too short to judge David Tennant -- especially something that's little more than a quick little teaser for The Christmas Invasion -- but no problems so far...

And I think donating to Children in Need makes a lot of sense, especially since they've made it available for us.

[Edit: It was online at the official site for a week, but isn't there anymore. Still, it was great for it to be available for that little while...]

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Teen Titans vs a Dalek

I was watching an episode of the Teen Titans cartoon (Homecoming). In it, the Teen Titans and Doom Patrol fight a disembodied Brain, called, well, Brain, and in it, he's clearly sitting on a converted Dalek base, with slits and Dalek bumps.

But then, there's been a lot of times where comic books have clearly been influence by Doctor Who -- and it occasionally goes the other way, because if you remove the handlebars one of the new Cybermen look quite a bit like Iron Man, especially as drawn by Bryan Hitch. (None of this is a negative in my book.)

Speaking of Cybermen, I'm not the only person looking at new series Doctor Who domains, there's a fantastic Cybus Corporation website that's been built by another eager Doctor Who fan... (and they've got more graphics skills than I do...)

Goblet of Who

Friday is probably the biggest day of David Tennant's career -- he's in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire playing Barty Crouch Jr, and then he also appears in his first starring scene as the Doctor as part of the Children In Need Appeal and perhaps more significantly, the scene is going to be made available online as well, making it accessible around the world.

It's my opinion that worldwide Doctor Who fans should definitely donate to the cause, as it looks like they will take credit cards. I don't know if it'll register as a connection to Doctor Who or not, but at the very least it's good karma, especially for those of us in the largest English-speaking market in the world without any proper distribution of the new series.

David Tennant also turned on the lights of Cardiff, and apparently enjoying every minute of it. I don't recall Christopher Eccleston and Billie Piper making any real public appearances together, so I'm pleased to see Tennant and Piper make appearances. While Eccleston is a fantastic actor, and made a fantastic Doctor, my impression is that Tennant is a lot more instinctively Doctorish; in much the same way that Tom Baker was (and really still is, if you listen to him on something like Little Britain).

Old Articles

Once again, refreshing on some of the previous Doctor Who content I've written over the years...

Doctor Who in St Paul, Minnesota 1986 Press Clippings
Doctor Who USA Tour (1986, 1987) Clippings
1988 Time Festival Press Clippings
April 1987: <=?=> Volume 2, Issue 4
KTCA Pledge Drive Screenshots
Doctor Who translated in German
My trip to Gallifrey 1998
My trip to Visions 97

My recollections of my experiences of Doctor Who, including a history of the Whoniversity, the club I was involved in the 80's.

The results for my poll on canonicity and
the new adventures
. It is for every sad fan out there. It is also
several years old, so the results are probably irrelevant. [of course,
they probably always were...]

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


I'm not sure if one way to prime this site is to recycle links to old content -- especially as it looks like the main way old articles and reviews show up are by people googling for the topic of that article.

I posted a lot of reviews back in the day that the New Adventure Doctor Who novels were at their peak, and into the first set of BBC Book as well.

Here they are, completely unchanged from when they were posted in the late 1990s:

Dead Romance by Lawrence Miles [NA, Chris]
The Taint [BBC, 8, Sam, Fitz]
Realitywarp [Fan Video/The Federation, 6/Peri]
The Infinity Doctors by Lance Parkin [BBC, The Doctor]
From A to Z by Gary Gillatt [Nonfiction]
Fury From The Deep [Recon, 2, Jamie, Victoria]
The Tenth Planet [Recon, 1, Ben, Polly]
The Macra Terror [Recon, 2, Jamie, Ben, Polly]
The Invasion [Recon, 2, Jamie, Zoe]
Vanderdeken's Children by Christopher Buils [BBC, 8, Sam]
Shadowmind by Christopher Bulis [NA, 7, Ace, Benny]
Placebo Effect by Gary Russell [BBC, 8, Sam]
Doctor Who Magazine #268
Seeing I by Jon Blum and Kate Orman [BBC, 8, Sam]
The Face of the Enemy by David A. McIntee [BBC, UNIT, Master, Ian, Barbara]
The Dark Path by David A. McIntee [MA, 2, Jamie, Victoria, Master]
So Vile a Sin by Ben Aaronovitch and Kate Orman [NA, 7, Chris, Roz]
Dreamstone Moon by Paul Leonard [BBC, 8, Sam]
Phase Four [ Fan Video ]
Legacy of the Daleks by John Peel [BBC, 8]
Walking to Babylon by Kate Orman [NA, Benny]
Longest Day by Michael Collier [BBC, 8, Sam]
White Darkness by David A McIntee [NA, 7/Ace/Benny]
Short Trips [Short Stories Audio Book]
The Reign of Turner by the ex-Federation [Fan Parody Video]
Option Lock by Justin Richards [BBC,8,Sam]
Kursaal by Peter Anghelides [BBC,8, Sam]
Business Unusual by Gary Russell [BBC, 6, Mel]
The Devil Goblins From Neptune by Keith Topping & Martin Day [BBC, 3, Liz, UNIT]
The Sands of Time by Justin Richards [Virgin, 5, Tegan, Nyssa]
Alien Bodies by Lawrence Miles [BBC,8/Sam]
War of the Daleks by John Peel [BBC,8/Sam]
Genocide by Paul Leonard [BBC, 8/Sam]
The Bodysnatchers by Mark Morris [BBC, 8/Sam]
Licence Denied Edited by Paul Cornell [Fanzine retrospective]
The Eight Doctors by Terrance Dicks [BBC, 8/Sam]
Lucifer Rising by Andy Lane and Jim Mortimore [NA, 7/Ace/Benny]
Evolution by John Peel [MA, 4/Sarah Jane]
The Pit by Neil Penswick [NA, 7/Benny]
Vampire Science by Jon Blum and Kate Orman [BBC, 8/Sam]
The Highest Science by Gareth Roberts [NA, 7/Benny]
State of Change by Christopher Bulis [MA, 6/Peri]
Cat's Cradle: Witch Mark by Andrew Hunt [NA, 7/Ace]
The Dying Days by Lance Parkin [NA]
Lungbarrow by Marc Platt [NA]
Return of the Living Dad by Kate Orman [NA]
Sleepy by Kate Orman [NA]
Venusian Lullaby by Paul Leonard [MA]
The Menagrie by Martin Day [MA]
The Room With No Doors by Kate Orman [NA]
The Nth Doctor by Jean-Marc Lofficier
Scales of Injustice by Gary Russell [MA]
Christmas on a Rational Planet by Lawerence Miles [NA]
The English Way of Death by Gareth Roberts [MA]

Cold Fusion by Lance Parkin [MA]
Doctor Who - The Novel of the Film by Gary Russell
Who Killed Kennedy
Transit by Ben Aaronovitch [NA]
Invasion of the Cat-People by Gary Russell
System Shock by Justin Richards
Sorcerer's Apprentice by Chris Bulis
Cat's Cradle: Warhead by Andrew Cartmel
The Also People by Ben Aaronovitch
Head Games by Steve Lyons
Just War by Lance Parkin
A History of the Universe by Lance Parkin[reference book]
Dimensions in Time and Happy Endings[TV Special and 50th NA]
Time Rift[Fan Video]
Enemy Within[FOX Doctor Who TV Movie]
Millennial Rites by Craig Hinton[MA]
Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible by Mark Platt[NA]
Timewyrm: Apocolypse by Nigel Robinson[NA]
Decalog 2, Edited by Mark Stammers and Stephen James Walker[Short Stories]
Timewyrm: Exodus by Terrance Dicks[NA]
Decalog, Edited by Mark Stammers and Stephen James Walker[Short Stories]
All-Consuming Fire by Andy Lane[NA]
Set Piece by Kate Orman[NA]
Timewyrm:Revelation by Paul Cornell[NA]
The Romance of Crime by Gareth Roberts[MA]
Shakedown: Return of the Sontarans[Video]
Iceberg by David Banks[NA]
Deceit by Peter Darvill-Evans[NA]
Timewyrm:Genesys by John Peel[NA]
Original Sin by Andy Lane[NA]
Human Nature by Paul Cornell[NA]
The Reference Guide Review (Handbooks, Discontinuity Guide)
Love and War, and No Future by Paul Cornell[NA]
The Left Handed Hummingbird by Kate Orman [NA]
Goth Opera by Paul Cornell[MA]
Blood Harvest by Terrance Dicks[NA]


Welcome to the Torchwood Institute

This site is going to be a new site relating to Doctor Who and the 2006 spin-off series Torchwood, with an eye to promoting both series to an American audience.

Both Doctor Who and Torchwood are Copyright © by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), and no infringement is intended. This site is intended to promote and celebrate both series.