This Week In Doctor Who - December 28, 2001
- THIS WEEK IN DOCTOR WHO - December 28, 2001
by Benjamin F. Elliott
Vol 4, No 52
Welcome to the weekly guide to Doctor Who broadcasts worldwide.
The year 2001 is drawing to a close. Doctor Who is still performing well as
a book series and a direct to audio series. The DVDs are successes, and more
are on the way in the UK, Australia, and North America. It saw success as an
online drama. The Restoration Team http://www.restoration-team.co.uk/ found
new ways to make the old episodes look good on video & DVD releases.
The one area where Doctor Who hasn't been successful in lately is its
original format - a TV series. Constant rumors about a TV show or a movie,
but nothing has happened. The reruns were benched in New Zealand back in
June, though they are supposedly returning to Prime TV shortly. Doctor Who's
back on TV in Canada on BBC Kids http://www.bbckids.ca/ , but alas, that
channel is part of the digital cable launch, so most Canadians can't see
it - based on the early ratings results, all of the Canadian digital
channels are in trouble. In the US Doctor Who was dumped by BBC America and
discontinued in North Dakota and Tampa, Florida, while it was picked up in
Dallas, Texas - on the plus side, the Sci-Fi Channel picked up rights to
repeat the McGann TV movie, which we had lacked for years. BBC Prime in
Europe, Africa, and Asia started airing two episodes a week instead of one.
Australia ended the year with the weekday episodes being suspended to let
the weekend repeats catch up. In the UK, UK Gold started airing 2 movies a
weekend instead of 1 movie. Very much a mixed bag of a year.
This Week In Doctor Who itself has seen some changes over this year. There's
a fair chance you are reading the column in a different place than where you
were reading it back in January. On April 4, 2001, I launched a Yahoo! Group
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/thisweekindoctorwho/ to enable me to take over
some of the distribution of the column. The timing was fortuitous, as that
was the day that Shaun Lyon announced that the Doctor Who Alliance
newsletter http://www.drwhoalliance.com/ was going on hiatus for several
months, and that on its return it would no longer be a weekly publication.
Most of my readership was reading the column in the Alliance, but no longer.
Also, the mirrors of the column carried at http://www.whonews.fsnet.co.uk/
and http://www.gallifreyone.com/ were discontinued shortly thereafter.
This Week In Doctor Who is still carried in Australia at
http://www.varos.com/drwho/uktv/ (courtesy of Jason Fraser - take a bow,
Jason), the UK at http://www.wolvesoffenric.freeserve.co.uk/ (courtesy of
Roger Clark - your turn to bow), and in the US at
http://nitro9.earth.uni.edu/doctor/homepage.html (courtesy of Dr. Siobahn
Morgan). You can still read it Friday mornings on the rec.arts.drwho
newsgroup. If you lost track of TWIDW during the Spring - the column was
I am happy to say that the TWIDW Yahoo! Group is growing nicely. As I write
this, it is up to 179 subscribers. While a tad less than the venerable
Alliance Newsletter's 2851 members, it is the 6th largest Group, and 4 short
of the 4th largest. Considering the availability of the column in other
locations and that you don't even have to subscribe to read it at the
Groups! site, I think it is doing well. Whatever happens to Doctor Who on
TV, TWIDW will still be here, and hopefully you will be here too.
Christmas Week was pretty quiet, but there were a few developments:
INTERNET - The BBC has announced the premiere date for episode 2 of "Death
Comes To Time", the online 7th Doctor story. Episode 2 goes up at
http://www.bbc.co.uk/doctorwho/ on February 14th in real audio format with
illustrations. Episode 1 was originally recorded last year for broadcast on
BBC Radio 4, but it was rejected, so visual illustrations were added and it
premiered on BBC Online on July 13, 2001. Response to episode 1 was far
above expectations. Yes, episode 1 is still online. Sylvester McCoy, Sophie
Aldred, and Stephen Fry star in this story.
USA - DirecTV added numerous channels to its local station coverage on the
27th, in order to comply with Must-Carry rules. Subscribers of DirecTV in 41
markets where they can order any local stations on satellite can now get
nearly all the stations in those markets. 12 stations that air Doctor Who
serve 13 of those DirecTV markets. For some reason, only 10 of those
stations have been added, serving 11 DirecTV local markets. NHPTV New
Hampshire - eligible for the Boston, MA market, and WYIN Gary, IN - eligible
for the Chicago, IL market, have not been added to their local DirecTV
packages at this time. When/if they are added, their channel assignments
will be provided here.
USA - Dish Network is trying to get must carry stations added to their 36
local station packages by January 1, 2002. 12 stations that air Doctor Who
serve 12 of those Dish Network markets. Channel assignments are now
available for most of them. WYIN fans will be happy - you have a channel
assignment with Dish. NHPTV fans in the Boston area - it's not clear yet if
your station will be carried or not.
Additions and corrections are welcome at bfelliott@... ,
bfelliott3 on AOL IM, or thebfe on Yahoo! Messenger. And now, the listings:
UK Gold http://www.sceneone.co.uk/s1/tv/listings
Sat 9-11AM GMT "Time And The Rani" movie
The TARDIS is forced to crash on a gravel-covered world, precipitating the
Doctor's regeneration into his 7th incarnation. Now the Time Lady who forced
the TARDIS down hopes to use the Doctor's knowledge for scientifically evil
Sun 9:10-11AM GMT "Paradise Towers" movie
In need of a vacation, Mel convinces the 7th Doctor to visit a famous
vacation high rise apartment complex. Alas, the tourist trap is also a death
BBC Prime http://www.bbcprime.com/
Late Fri 12:35AM, Sat 4:15PM CET "The Two Doctors" 6 pt version, ep 3
Sat 4:37PM, Late Sat 12:30AM CET "The Two Doctors" 6 pt version, ep 4
Wed Noon CET "The Two Doctors" 6 pt version, ep 5
Thu Noon CET "The Two Doctors" 6 pt version, ep 6
The 6th Doctor searches for his previous incarnation, hoping to find him
before a monstrous experiment turns his past self into a cannibalistic
madman. With Patrick Troughton as the 2nd Doctor.
Sun 7AM, Late Sun 1AM AEDT "Enlightenment" all 4 eps
Eternals use human crews in a space race to obtain the prize of
Enlightenment, and more importantly to avoid being bored. Things turn
dangerous when one of the eternals decides to cheat. 5th Doctor: Peter
BBC Kids http://www.bbckids.ca/
New Years' Eve Special Programming:
Mon 8-10PM EST (5-7PM PST), Late Mon 2-4AM EST (11PM-1AM PST) "Pyramids Of
Mars" all 4 eps
U*N*I*T HQ - 1911. Decades before the top secret organization moves into
this home, the property is used in a plot to free the dreaded Sutekh from
his prison on the planet Mars.
Mon 10PM-Mid EST (7-9PM PST) "The Robots Of Death" all 4 eps
The 4th Doctor and Leela are the prime suspects on a Sandminer when the crew
are murdered one by one. Meanwhile, the actual killers decide to kill again.
This story is famous for its art deco sets and witty dialogue.
Weekdays 7:30PM, 10:30PM, 2AM, 4AM EST (4:30PM, 7:30PM, 11PM, 1AM PST)
Tue-Thu "The Brain Of Morbius" eps 2 - 4 of 4
The 4th Doctor learns that he is part of Professor Solon's plan to bring the
evil Time Lord Morbius back to life.
Fri "The Seeds Of Doom" ep 1 of 6
Alien seed pods are found in the Antarctic. If they are allowed to
germinate - the Earth is doomed.
DirecTV subscribers - the channel location depends on your receiver. Older
receivers will display the channel in the 800s and 900s. Newer receivers
will display the channel in the 2-99 range. Ex: 947/13 means that older
receivers should tune to 947, and newer receivers should tune to 13.
Dish Network subscribers - if the channel number has "??" after it, that is
a guess based on which frequency in the area is still available for another
channel. Dish Channel numbers are taken from the grid at
NHPTV New Hampshire 11,49,52 http://www.nhptv.org/
Dish Network Local 8781?? effective 1/1/02??
Late Sat Mid EST "Castrovalva" eps 3+4 of 4
The 5th Doctor attempts to heal his mind in the paradise of Castrovalva. But
something is amiss in this idyllic town. And why can't he remember the name
of Ad, er, um, who was he? - that guy in the yellow shirt who's good at
Late Thu Mid EST "Four To Doomsday" eps 1+2 of 4
The 5th Doctor and company arrive on a spaceship bound for Earth. The
spaceship has visited Earth before, and now it is coming to stay. These
episodes will not be repeated, as the Saturday repeat is being pre-empted by
sports on January 5th. Catch it on Thursday, or alas, you have missed it.
WQED/WQEX 13,16 Pittsburgh, PA http://www.wqed.org/
DirecTV Local 947/13
Dish Network Local 8136 effective 1/1/02
Sat 11:30PM EST "Castrovalva" eps 3+4 of 4
See NHPTV for story description. Beginning next week, 1 episode per week
starting at Midnight.
WYBE 35 Philadelphia, PA http://www.wybe.org/
DirecTV Local 909/35
Dish Network Local 8162 effective 1/1/02
Sat 4AM+5:30PM EST "Robot" eps 3+4 of 4
Hilda Winters and the SRS cronies prepare to start World War III, in hopes
of ruling the survivors of humanity.
Sat 11PM EST "The Ark In Space" eps 1+2 of 4
In the distant future, the 4th Doctor, Sarah, and Harry awaken the survivors
MPT Maryland 22,28,31,36,62,67 http://www.mpt.org/
DirecTV Washington, DC-Hagerstown, MD Local 980/62
DirecTV Baltimore, MD Local 980/22
Dish Network Washington, DC-Hagerstown, MD Local 808_?? effective 1/1/02??
Dish Network Pittsburgh, PA Local 8140?? effective 1/1/02??
(At press time, Dish was apparently considering adding MPT to the Pittsburgh
locals. Dish does not carry locals for Baltimore. There were too many
unassigned frequencies in the DC list to guess which one Dish is giving to
MPT. DirecTV is not adding MPT to their Pittsburgh locals, but they do offer
local channels in Baltimore.)
Late Sat Mid EST "The Mutants" movie
The 3rd Doctor and Jo are sent on a mission by the Time Lords - deliver a
package to a revolutionary which could have long lasting reprecutions on a
planet and the Earth Empire.
WCET 48 Cincinnati, OH http://www.wcet.org/
DirecTV Local 909/48
Dish Network Local 8356 effective 1/1/02
Sat 11PM EST "Meglos" ep 4 of 4
The 4th Doctor and Meglos (disguised as the 4th Doctor) battle for control
of the Dodecahedron.
Sat 11:30PM EST "Full Circle" ep 1 of 4
A CVE swallows the TARDIS, flinging the 4th Doctor, Romana, and K9 into
WYIN 56 Gary, IN (Chicago, IL) http://www.chicagowho.com/
Dish Network Local 8502 effective 1/1/02
Pre-empted by sports this week. Moves to Saturday 11PM next week.
WILL 12 Urbana, IL http://www.will.uiuc.edu/
Sat 11:35PM CST "The Face Of Evil" ep 1 of 4
The 4th Doctor lands on a world where he is known as the Evil One.
TPT St. Paul, MN http://www.tpt.org/
analog KTCA 2, digital KTCI-DT 16.5 (2.5)
DirecTV Local 891/2
Dish Network Local 8576 effective 1/1/02
Sat 11:30PM, Sun 5:30AM CST "Nightmare Of Eden" ep 2 of 4
Someone has smuggled Vraxoin onto the ships - the most dangerous drug in the
galaxy. It makes people stop caring about responsibilities, just when danger
IPTV Iowa http://www.sffn.com/ http://www.iptv.org/
analog 11,12,21,24,27,32,32,36 digital KDIN-DT 50 Des Moines, IA
Sat 11:35PM CST "The Five Doctors" 4 pt version, eps 3+4
The Doctors continue to approach the Dark Tower, hoping to learn why they
were taken out of time. The Master and the Cybermen decide to double cross
KERA/K24AD Dallas/Wichita, TX http://www.kera.org/
analog 13,24 digital KERA-DT 14.1 Dallas, TX
DirecTV Local 889/13
Dish Network Local 8406 effective 1/1/02
Fri 11:50PM CST "The Sea Devils" eps 1+2? of 6?
If the various online listings are correct, KERA is skipping The Curse Of
Peladon, moving Doctor Who to a 12:15AM start time next week, and airing all
of The Sea Devils next week, including these two episodes.
KBDI/K32EO 12,32 Denver/Colorado Springs, CO
DirecTV Local 910/12
Dish Network Local 8211 effective 1/1/02
Late Fri 12:30AM MST "Arc Of Infinity" eps 1+2 of 4
Sat 11PM MST "Arc Of Infinity" eps 3+4 of 4
A traitor on Gallifrey enables an anti-matter creature to bond with the 5th
Doctor, enabling it to return to our universe. When the plot goes awry, the
creature's existence threatens our universe.
KUED/KUES Salt Lake City/Richfield, UT http://www.kued.org/
analog 7,39 digital KUED-DT 42 Salt Lake City, UT
DirecTV Local 982/7
Dish Network Local 8536 effective 1/1/02
Sat 11PM, Late Sat 12:30AM MST "The Invasion Of Time" ep 6 of 6
The 4th Doctor violates who knows how many laws of Gallifrey with his plan
to defeat the Sontarans. He wants to build a DeMat Gun. Borusa thinks that
the solution is worse than the problem.
KBTC/KCKA/K65BU 28,15,65 Tacoma/Centralia/Gray's River, WA
DirecTV Local 970/28
Dish Network Local 8620 effective 1/1/02
Sat 7PM, Late Sat 12:30AM PST "Logopolis" eps 3+4 of 4
The 4th Doctor's era comes to an end, and so does the Universe. The CVEs
have shut down, and the universe is going out of style faster than Brittany
Spears albums. Now the Doctor's only hope - is the co-operation of the
KTEH 54 San Jose, CA http://www.kteh.org/
DirecTV Local 903/54
Dish Network Local 8234 effective 1/1/02
Sun 11PM PST "The Day Of The Daleks" eps 3+4 of 4
The 3rd Doctor faces off against the Daleks in both the 20th and 22nd
Centuries as a plot to keep the timeline permanently damaged unfolds.
Thanks for reading. Until next year, take care.
Doctor Who is a BBC Trademark. Copyright 2001.