Friday, 17 October 2014


With the recent drop in ratings for Doctor Who some fans have begun to question the reason for this decline, citing the popularity of Steven Moffat and Peter Capaldi as possible causes. 

The overall figure for Kill the Moon was 6.91 million, once again down on The Caretaker.

Thankfully eight episodes in and things are starting to change. The ratings for Mummy on the Orient Express actually went up. Shown at 8.37 pm (the latest the programme has ever been shown) the overnight ratings were 5.08 million. Much higher than the previous week. Perhaps things are looking up after all.

Friday, 3 October 2014


The question on the lips of many fans is; where is Ian Chesterton?

Ever since last year's anniversary special, The Day of the Doctor, fans have been eagerly anticipating the return of original companion, Ian Chesterston, after we learned that in the current day he is Chairman of the Governors at Coal Hill Secondary School (see above). It could easily have been a nice little touch added to the anniversary special, but with Clara now a teacher at the school it seemed likely to most fans that Ian would make a long-awaited return -- especially given that the latest episode, The Caretaker (shown last Saturday), was to be set entirely within Coal Hill School. Did Ian turn up, though? No!

Coal Hill School science teacher, Ian Chesterton

Many fans, including professional authors who have written novels featuring Ian, believe this to be a missed opportunity. Other than Carol Ann Ford who played Susan, the Doctor's granddaughter, Ian actor William Russell is the only surviving actor from the original line-up that shaped Doctor Who in it's first year. It's been fifty years since we last saw Ian in Doctor Who, although he has returned in many novels, short stories, comics and audio dramas over the last couple of decades. In these it became known that he and Barbara Wright (the first regular character to be seen in Doctor Who) married after their travels with the Doctor, and this was finally confirmed in 2010 in the Sarah Jane Adventures episode Death of the Doctor when Sarah informed her young friends that Ian and Barbara Chesterston live in Cambridge, and rumour has it they haven't aged since the '60s. Thus we know for certain that both Ian and Barbara are still alive in the Doctor Who universe, although it is unlikely we'll ever see Barbara make a return on TV due to the actress' unfortunate death in 1993.

So, what of Ian? Why hasn't he returned? Gareth Roberts, author of The Caretaker, was asked about this at and has this to say; 'I just thought it would be too much of a distraction. I think that's an episode all of its own.' He makes a fair point. To bring back such an important character from Doctor Who's informative years would and should be a very big deal. Roberts added; 'I'd love to see William Russell back in the show! That's so rich and so fertile for someone to do. You'd have to explain it enough so that everyone would get it.'

Cambridge scientist, Professor Ian Chesterton
But how much would you really need to explain? It could so easily be a passing encounter, in which Professor Chesterton assists the Doctor without even realising who the caretaker, Mr Smith, is. The Doctor would, of course, know and taking the cue from an old Brief Encounter prose story published in Doctor Who Magazine, the Doctor could leave a little gift for Ian. It would be a magical last moment of an episode to have Ian holding that gift, as realisation dawns. A wistful smile plaguing his lips as he lifts the phone to call his wife Barbara...

Perhaps this is all being set up now? Perhaps Adrian, the teacher that bore a passing resemblance to Matt Smith, will be revealed to be Adrian Chesterton, Ian and Barbara's son? Certainly that is what I was expecting as I watched The Caretaker. Was I the only one to think that? Drop a post in the comments, and let us know your thoughts. 

Coal Hill teacher, Adrian... Chesterton?

Thursday, 2 October 2014


Series 8 is polarising the Doctor Who fanbase, with many conflicting views on the various merits of each episode. Despite what the fans are saying, good and bad, the ratings speak for themselves. 

Six episodes in, and Peter Capaldi's d├ębut season is holding its own against some stiff competition...

  • Deep Breath - 9.17 million viewers in total, with an Audience Appreciation of 82.
  • Into the Dalek - 7.29 million viewers in total, with an Audience Appreciation of 84.
  • Robot of Sherwood - 7.28 million viewers in total, with an Audience Appreciation of 82.
  • Listen - 7.1 million viewers in total, with an Audience Appreciation of 82.
  • Time Heist - 6.99 million viewers in total, with an Audience Appreciation of 84.

The Caretaker had 4.89 million viewers in overnight figures, which will almost certainly improve by several million once the final figure is released.