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The Doctor calls UNIT for help - Doctor Who - BBC04:05

The Doctor calls UNIT for help - Doctor Who - BBC

Planet of the Dead was the first of the 2009 specials that ended David Tennant's tenure as the Doctor. It teamed the Tenth Doctor up with an aristocratic thief named Lady Christina De Souza for a one-off adventure that also heavily involved UNIT. Behind the scenes, it was important for a number of innovations, as it was the first episode to be filmed in HD, and the first to involve location filming in the Middle East. As of 2013, it was the only Doctor Who Easter special.

The women who gave Doctor Who back to us
JaneTranter
Click for video

Think Doctor Who is just for boys? Don't you believe it. Not only was the show's very first producer a woman, but it would never have come back without the fierce advocacy of Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner. Considering her importance to Doctor Who it's somewhat ironic that Tranter's only on-screen credits are for Torchwood: Miracle Day. But Gardner, her "partner in crime", is tied only with Russell T Davies as the most prolific producer in Doctor Who history.

Industrial action

Paintbox

Click for a video of a 21st century geek as he takes delivery of one of the two Paintboxes used by the BBC in the 1980s
The Quantel Paintbox was a graphics workstation that allowed Doctor Who to have a primitive form of colour grading in the 1980s. To find out more about the "business of show", go to category:production information, where you can read about colour separation overlay, low loaders, telerecordings, vidFIRE, rostrum cameras, 2" quad tape, Ealing Studios and tons more.
Surprising guest star
Astrid-peth-kylie-minogue
Click to see David Tennant giving Kylie a Brit Award
Though she's never had much of a Stateside career, Kylie Minogue has been a Big Damn Deal everywhere else since she first appeared on the Australian soap, Neighbours. That's why RTD's team pursued her vigorously when looking for a 2007 Christmas Special guest companion. Her turn as Astrid Peth worked a treat, giving the show some of the highest ratings in its history — and getting tons of free copy in the global English press. Find out more about the thousands of actors who have been on Doctor Who by exploring Doctor Who guest actors.
Ex-Doctors never die, they just make audios

The careers of the Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Doctors are significantly longer in audio than on television. Check out their latest works at category:2017 audio stories

The relevance of comics

Officially, only The Lodger has been explicitly adapted from a comic strip — also called The Lodger.

10MickeyFootball

However, several stories have clearly taken material from comic strips — often those in Doctor Who Magazine. The Shakespeare Code contains a good amount of material from A Groatsworth of Wit, and the notion of the Doctor absorbing the time vortex in order to spare a companion was explored in both The Parting of the Ways and The Flood.

The first of the "money men"

Donald Baverstock was the BBC executive who set the the wheels in motion that eventually led to the creation of Doctor Who. Essentially the original commissioner of the programme, he hired Sydney Newman and later imposed a sense of financial responsibility upon producer Verity Lambert.

But Baverstock wasn't the only BBC executive to have a profound impact on the development of Doctor Who. Make sure you read about Lorraine Heggessey, Mark Thompson, Danny Cohen, George Entwistle, Tony Hall, Shaun Sutton, Sydney Newman and others.
Things released on 20 October


Did you know…


20 October births and deaths
Production history for 20 October

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