Tuesday, 26 November 2013

The Capaldi Continuum

"One day, I shall come back. Yes, one day...."

Well, that's the plan, and with some new fiction too! But, until then, I have a guest article from Chad Gingrich for your delectation, and his thoughts on the casting of the rather splendid Peter Capaldi. 


What Choosing Peter Capaldi Means for Doctor Who   

Geronimo!   As we continue the 50th anniversary celebrations that saw the recent airing of “Day of The Doctor” in 94 countries worldwide (and which was perhaps the most anticipated Who episode of all time), we are left in anticipation of what the 12th regeneration of the Doctor will bring to the beloved British series.

Compared to the last two Doctors, Capaldi is a big-name actor in the UK.  Both Tennant and Smith more or less got their start on Doctor Who and many believed that the 12th Doctor would also follow this pattern.While some fear this could mean a shorter run in the part (ala Eccleston), it definitely shows us the popularity of the property among seasoned actors.  It’s also great to see a true fan of the series in the role; you can imagine the ideas he’s been working on for years for what “his” Doctor will be.

While we probably won’t get a “Malcolm Tucker” Doctor (see: The Thick of It, In The Loop), we can certainly hope for some inspiration from his part.  In particular we can imagine this Doctor being more intense and sporadic, which would be in stark contrast of Smith’s goofy, bumbling Doctor.  But don’t be expecting the hilariously offensive language from Capaldi - this is a family show after all!  As an older actor, we can also hope for a larger sense of gravitas from the Doctor.  This would align well with the timeline of the Doctor and what he’s seen in his 1200 years.  This could signify a nice shift towards some more dramatic storylines, which would be a nice change of pace from Smith’s more comedic tone.

We’ve had the swashbuckling Doctor with Tennant, the bumbling, comedic Doctor with Smith but Capaldi could shift towards a more calm and calculated Doctor.  Smith’s years brought a lot of reveals and secrets about The Doctor’s past and the mythos of the character, which could lead to a much more quiet and reserved 12th Doctor who is more internally pensive and closed off to the world.  This would also bring a really interesting dynamic between companion characters, especially Clara who would have to adjust to a notably different Time Lord.  The age difference will also play well between an older Doctor and a younger companion and could lead to a much more paternal relationship between the two.

The Doctor wouldn’t be our favourite Time Lord if he didn’t have a silly appearance and costume.  While a serious tone might accompany Capaldi, he still has that “goofy” Doctor look.  We can only imagine what kind of costume they’ll come up with for Peter (my personal preference…bring back the veggie boutonniere). Peter Capaldi’s casting isn’t the massive departure many had hoped for. (The Doctor is still white and still male). However, it could pave an easier path to a bigger shake up with the next Doctor.   Of course, the controversy behind the argument that we should move to a different “type” of Doctor really should be about who the best actor is for the part (regardless of gender or ethnicity) and I think we can all agree that Tennant and Smith were both fantastic choices.

Overall, Capaldi is a strong choice for the franchise and one that should ensure its popularity for years to come.  While we’ll all miss Matt Smith, we’ll surely take a liking to Capaldi just like we did when we moved on from David Tennant.

If somehow you haven't yet seen it, watch the 50th Anniversary special “The Day of The Doctor" immediately! And get ready for "The Time of the Doctor" on Christmas Day that will feature the regeneration of Matt Smith into Peter Capaldi.

About the Author 

Whovian Chad Gingrich writes on behalf of Dish Systems , a reseller of satellite TV packages included FLEX TV and other wibbly wobbly timey wimey deals and promotions.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Normal service will resume shortly....

It's coming! Oh yes, it's coming! At last, series 4 is so very, very close and it'll kick off with The Warm Embrace of Life featuring the Fifth Doctor and Nyssa. Which is a complete turnaround as the opener was originally gooing to feature the First Doctor and Steven. However, after two aborted attempts at writing two very different stories, I gave up on that idea and went back to my favourite to get me kick-started. Which is working, which means that series 4 will begin before the month is out!

In the meantime, why not check out some of my other endeavours? There is my ongoing work for Starburst Magazine for which I write a monthly column and features. Starburst is now back in print and available via your friendly local newsagent - though if you can't find it, click here for another easy way to pick up a copy.

In addition, you can hear me speak nonsense on the Fast Return Switch podcast, where myself and chums give our own Doctor Who commentaries on stories old and new.

Plenty to keep you busy for now, and Consequences will be back very soon indeed...

Friday, 23 December 2011

The Box of Delights

Well, it's Christmas! So, as promised, here is the first and last Consequences Christmas tale! It's quite rushed and very slight, but it's something to tide you over until series 4 kicks off next month. Hope you enjoy it, bearing in mind it was mostly written in the last couple of hours!

One last thing: Merry Christmas!

The Box of Delights

The moonlight reflecting off her face accentuated her beauty, the whiteness of the snow all around helping contribute to the ethereal glow that seemed to bathe her entire being.  As she looked around, she smiled, drinking in the surroundings and the company.

                “Now, Doctor Song, is this the sort of thing you had in mind?” The Doctor was dressed in his finery, resplendent in top hat and tails once again.

                River, wearing an extremely warm-looking faux-fur coat over a glorious crimson evening gown, nodded. “Perfect. As always, you know what this lady likes.”

                “Well we can’t have you going about saying your husband doesn’t know how to show you a good Christmas now, can we? So, how about,” he whipped a hand out from behind his back, seemingly pulling two glasses out from nowhere, “a glass of mulled wine? All the rage at Christmas, so I’m told.” He handed one to River, who gratefully accepted, and brushed snow from a nearby bench so as to allow the pair of them room to sit.

                River sipped at the beverage, then looked curiously at the Doctor. “You don’t like wine. Why have you got two glasses?”

                The Doctor shrugged. “It seemed polite. It’s what people do, isn’t it? Besides,” he looked down at River’s now half-empty glass, “I’m sure you could manage it after that one. Especially in this cold.”

                River smiled slyly. “Oh so that’s it. Get me intoxicated and have your wicked way with me? You don’t need to go to all that trouble sweetie.”

                The Doctor was flustered, not knowing where to look or what to say.

                River laughed. “Oh you should see you face! Don’t worry my love, I’ll be gentle.”

                The Doctor stood up, paced, then sat down again having seemingly achieved nothing. Yet, when River looked, in front of them was a gentle fire. “Well now, that’s a little better isn’t it?” The Doctor was clearly trying to change the subject, and River didn’t attempt to turn the conversation back to its previous course. “Now what I thought, what I always like at Christmas, is a good story by an open fire. The kind your parents will tell you, just before...” He looked at her sadly. “Sorry, wasn’t thinking.”

                River waved aside any suggestion of upset or offence. “I may not have had a happy childhood with the kind of Christmases that children should have, but I’m making up for it now. In fact, mummy and daddy dearest received a visit from their wayward daughter only the other day. Father’s quite the chef! Who knew?”

                The Doctor looked at her, unsurprised.”Of course he is! Rory the Roman, living a life for 2000 years. He may have been plastic, but he wasn’t idle all the time, I’m certain of that. Unless he was, in which case it is a big surprise, but...” He held up a hand as if to stop himself. “I’m going to tell you a story of Christmas past –well, my past. Just because it’s a Christmas story, you understand, and well, who doesn’t like a good festive tale with their mulled wine on a wintry night?”

                River turned, holding her glass with both hands and getting comfortable. “Ok sweetie, “she smiled, “I’m all ears.”

                The TARDIS landed, completely of its own volition. The Doctor thought little of it, he was used to its idiosyncrasies by now. A few hundred years of travelling for so long with companions, yet now alone for the first time in a very long time. It was for the best, he was sure of that. People had died, good people, and he didn’t want to be responsible for any more unnecessary deaths. So they’d been taken home, the pair of them, free to live their lives safely without his interference. He sighed, looking at the empty console room. “Yes, I shall miss them.” He looked above him, as if speaking to some unseen force. “Not that I had a choice in the matter! Sent back to their own times, their memories of me erased. It’s...it’s not right!” The TARDIS made an unsavoury noise, and the Doctor backed away, as if fearful they’d heard him. “Well I’d better take a look outside then, hadn’t I?” he said, wringing a handkerchief through his hands and dabbing his brow with it.

                The doors to the ship were open, and outside it the Doctor could see snow and little else. Aside from a figure, a child stumbling towards him with clothes that were far too inadequate for the adverse conditions.

                “Don’t be afraid! Follow my voice!” He called out, and he could see the distant form heading towards him. “That’s it! I’ll come out to meet you then we can go inside for a nice mug of cocoa and get you warm.” The child was gaining ground, almost at the Doctor, yet suddenly stumbled and fell in the snow.

                The Doctor hesitated briefly then dashed out into the snow, hefting the fallen child over his shoulder and haphazardly making his way back to the TARDIS. As he crossed the threshold, the doors closed behind him of their own accord and he headed straight for the sickbay.

                Finally, reaching his destination, he laid the child down on one of the beds, letting the TARDIS’ automatic scanning equipment check her for signs of any infection or disease. Knowing it would take time, he headed back to the console room, brushing the snow from his frock coat.

                He collapsed into a chair and sighed once more. “Oh dear, I wonder what it is you want from me this time?” He asked it of no one in particular, half expecting a message cube to appear before him, like the one he’d sent what seemed like decades ago. Could it have been that long? Surely not. He sat for a while, looking into the console’s polished surface at the older figure that stared back at him. His hair was greying now, not like the rich black it had once been. Would they ever carry out his sentence as they kept threatening to, he wondered.

                A sudden bleeping from the console shook him from his daydream. The scan was complete, so he headed back to the child, who when he arrived was still sleeping. He looked at the screen next to the bed, displaying the results of the scan, and his face fell. “Oh dear, that’s not good at all. Well we’ll see about that...” His hands played over the various switches that were positioned all around the area. He could at least make her comfortable, that much he was certain of. Maybe take her on a trip. Yes, one last journey. Maybe then they’d let him go, finally make happen what they’d sentenced him to all that time ago.

                Perhaps it really would be the end of this life after all.

                The child opened her eyes. Looking up she saw a small man with a mop of greying hair standing over her. She didn’t remember much about what had happened before she’d fallen, but she assumed that this man was her saviour.           

                “Hello,” she offered, a little nervously at first.

                “Hello,” said the man with an infectious grin. “It’s nice to see you awake at last. I thought you might like it here.” He gestured around their surroundings.

                She looked, and it seemed to be a wooden cabin, like the kind she’d read about in books. She stood up, slowly, the man stepping back to allow her the space to move around. She saw a window, the man offering his arm to help her reach it. She took it gratefully. She reasoned that if he had planned to hurt her he would have done so by now. As they moved towards it, she could see outside a frozen pond and trees covered with snow, yet as she turned she could see a roaring log fire warming the room.

                The man helped her back to her seat and sat in a chair next to her own. “I expect you’re wondering who I am,” the man said.

                The girl nodded.

                “Well,” the man looked around, seemingly nervous in his own skin, “I’m a sort of...doctor, and...”

                The girl’s eyes brightened. “So you’re going to make me better?” She coughed raucously.

                The man closed his eyes, then opened them with an impish grin on his face. “How about some cocoa? And then, if you like, we could try some ice skating. Have you ever been ice skating before?”

                He pulled two steaming mugs seemingly from nowhere and handed one to the girl, who accepted it gratefully. They both drank in silence, neither really knowing what to say.

                Suddenly, as they finished, the man leapt up and grabbed her by the arm. Almost instantaneously it seemed they were outside, sliding about on the ice. They both tried to hold each other up, both falling over and laughing repeatedly.

                “Now, have you ever built a snowman? Not a Yeti, they’re very different. Well not the real ones of course, but....” The man tailed off as the girl started gathering snow and making it into a rather elaborate figure that looked remarkably different from a regular snowman. The detail was very precise, looking more like a specific person than a formless lump of snow. It had defined arms and legs, and a very distinct face which the man thought he might recognise, but couldn’t place.

                Once formed, the girl immediately threw a barrage of snowballs at the shape, causing it to collapse and be at one with the rest of the ground once more.

                The man was by now making his way back to the cabin, and the girl followed at a pace, stopping to have to cough viciously, then dashing after him once again.

                They sat and warmed themselves by the fire, and it was then that she noticed the Christmas tree for the first time. Underneath were wrapped parcels, which the man began to pass to her.

                “All yours. It seems I’m on Father Christmas’ naughty list this year.” He gave another feint toothless smile and watched as she opened the gifts, all containing new warmer clothing to replace the borrowed items she currently wore.

                “Do you mind if I...?” He shook his head.

                He watched as she disappeared into another room, and saw one present remained under the tree. He took it out and opened the perfect cube of a box. Inside was a glowing white container which he held to his head.               

                “Well,” he said, eyes open and staring at the object, “well that changes everything.”


                She’d collapsed again not long after, and the Doctor knew immediately what he had to do. The message made it very clear, and he’d crossed into a timeline he should not have done in the first place. He’d only wanted to help, but again, in their eyes, he’d interfered and time needed to be set back onto the right track. If he didn’t then they would take matters into their own hands.

                Reluctantly, he carried the girl outside of the TARDIS, and set her to rest on the soft ground. As he did so, he whispered into her ear. “Now, don’t you worry. Everything will be quite alright....”

                River reached out and placed a hand on the Doctor’s arm, then pulled him in for a passionate kiss. The Doctor didn’t rush to extricate himself, but upon doing so managed to utter, “What was that for?”

                She smiled, that smile again. “Oh you know, you wonderful clever man.” Turning around she saw a wooden cabin behind her. “I thought I recognised this place, but I assumed it was from my dreams. Amazing how regeneration affects the brain, isn’t it?”

                “Ah,” the Doctor started, but didn’t get very far.

                “I always thought – always – that the one Christmas I could remember from my childhood I’d imagined. But it was you, all along, even though you didn’t mean to.” She threw up her hands. “How do you do it?”

                The Doctor shrugged. “Well, if it’s any consolation I have no idea at all. Which really isn’t much consolation at all, is it? I mean that was hundreds of years ago and you said yourself that regeneration does funny things to the brain and it does. It had no idea that that child was...”

                “Me. And you told me, when you left me for that first time. You told me not to be scared, that there was a trick, that I would be alright.” She paused, remembering the events as if it were mere moments ago. “And you were right. And here I am, living proof!”

                The Doctor smiled, and stood up. “And what proof you are River! A dance, in the snow? I’ve got Frank and Deano all ready to sing?” He gestured behind him, where two men stood and waved, and upon the Doctor’s thumbs up, began to sing.

                As ‘Winter Wonderland’ could be heard all around them and they twirled in the moonlight by the frozen lake, River whispered in the Doctor’s ear. “Just one question – where are we? I have a good idea, but...”

                The Doctor leant in close. “Where else Doctor Song? Where else could we be but my box of delights.”

                She held him close. “Merry Christmas sweetie.”
                 And they danced.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Hell in High Heels

Well, hello one and all! Yes, I am back and I've been busy! First off there's my first story for Nic Ford's splendid Companion Chronicles Prose Series featuring none other than the good Dr Song herself and called 'Hell in High Heels' (couldn't resist!). If you head here, then you can read it! Please let me know what you think of it, either on here or on Nic's site. There's another coming next Saturday too (featuring Nyssa) so I shall put a link to that once it's up.

ALSO, I couldn't resist writing a Christmas story. Since it's the last series of Consequences, it needs something special to kick it off, and this seems like the best way to get it started! It's not tied in with the arc and will stand alone - though the 'consequences' element will still be in play. Wait and see! What I can say for now is that it's called 'The Box of Delights' (anyone who follows me on Twitter will know I have an affinity with that particular television show) and will be up in the week leading up to Christmas - so in two weeks' time more or less!

So, things are happening, and series 4 will kick off in early January.

I shall return again soon with more news. Hope you enjoy 'Hell in High Heels' for now...

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

It's coming....the end.....

Hello all! Well, it's been a while since I announced anything on here regarding the series, but lo, it shall be upon us soon! Yes, it's happening (though it looked for all the world like it wouldn't) and will be up and running just the other side of Christmas. Will there be a festive special this year? Do you know, I'd only just thought of that mere seconds before I typed it, so I can honestly say...maybe.

So, this is it, the last hurrah before I move onto pastures new. Hopefully the series will go out with a bang rather than a whimper, but that's for you discerning readers to decide. In the meantime, I shall try to be a bit more frequent with my updates AND I'll post a link to the stories I've written for the Nic Ford-overseen Companion Chronicles prose series, that I originally set up a long while back. Without Nic's dedication it would have died months back, but he rescued it and has made it his own.

Fear not, I shall be back soon!

And the subject of my first Companion Chronicles story? The picture's a bit of a giveaway...

Monday, 17 October 2011

The parting of the ways...

Inevitable. It was always going to happen, and now is that moment of realisation. It suddenly dawned on me today that I have to stop writing Who fic, and so I'm making the decision to do so. So that's it! Well, not quite....I'm in the process of writing two stories for the rather splendid Mr Nic Ford, and I shall finish both of those. I will, of course, also finish series 4 and get it out there at last, though I won't be writing as much. An opener and a finale, bookended by the First and Eleventh Doctors (quite fitting really), but there'll be no tale of the Second Doctor and Ben, trapped in an alien experiment watched over by.....or the tale of the Sixth Doctor and Peri as they fail to prevent the destruction of.....- those are consigned to the 'What if?' pile, forever to remain mere plans.

Yet fear not, for the future holds more exciting plans and ideas, and while I'll be leaving the Whoniverse behind, there's a far greater unchartered expanse that'll I'll be voyaging through, and that's the most thrilling thought of all.

I hope you'll stick with me, and enjoy all that is to come, both the last of the Who stories and the undiscovered worlds to be explored.

And to soften the blow, more gratuitious Karen Gillan.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

The bearer of more bad news

Yep, it's true, more news that will not delight (unless you hate this site, in which case, what the HELL ARE YOU DOING HERE? Ahem...): series 4 will not see the light of day this year. There, I said it. It WILL appear next year, probably very early on, but not in this one (unless the planets are somehow suddenly all in alignment...). Why? Well, it's still me. I've been so busy doing non-Who fic writing stuff (and working, sleeping, spending time with the family...) that I've just not managed to squeeze it in. I will, and it'll be a bit here and a bit there, but not so as I can give a definite start date. I apologise to all those who've already done the hard work, but rest assured your efforts will see the light of day, and in the grand scheme of time it'll be very soon. Having done 3 series over the course of a year has undoubtedly taken its toll too, so a break from it will be good too - and hopefully it'll come through in the stories that I produce.

Apologies again, and as for my follow up series The Last...I'm not sure. Yet. It may happen, it may not. Time will tell, as a wise man once said.

By way of distraction, here's lovely pics of Amy and River, my two favourite Who ladies of the moment.