Don’t know enough about Doctor Who yet?

Go on. You can feel it, can’t you? The obsessiveness, the need to know more, the constant worry that perhaps you’ve missed some subtle reference in a story that actually speaks volumes – International Electromatics, Jamie McCrimmon? If only you’d known what the Doctor was talking about.

Give in. You know you want to.

The Beginner’s Guide to Doctor Who has arrived at the BBC web site. Lots of lovely Flash animations, no text to read, just handy narration plus Daleks on badly animated flying things. Everything you could hope for and a whole lot less (thankfully).


Five’s plans for new channels are going badly wrong

Well, they may have invented a channel just for me, Five US, but no good deed goes unpunished. It looks like there won’t actually be any programmes on it, according to Broadcast.

Five’s new US acquisitions channel is facing an autumn launch without a number of its biggest hit shows, including House, Grey’s Anatomy and Law and Order.

Living TV owns the exclusive rights to Grey’s Anatomy, which it licenses to Five but does not want to share with Five US. Hallmark, meanwhile, is not prepared to give up multichannel rights to popular Five series House, Law and Order, Special Victims Unit and Criminal Intent.

Five is also locked in a bidding war with Living over the multichannel rights to its highest rated series CSI with US producer Alliance Atlantis. Living is believed to hold the rights to the most recent series of the show but older episodes coming out of licence are up for grabs.

So what can we expect to see instead?

Five US is expected to launch its limited hours primetime line-up with recently purchased series it owns exclusively, male-skewing Hollywood movies, music shows, US documentaries and US sport.

Aargh! That’s not a TV channel just for me! That’s a TV channel expressly designed to ensure I never watch so much as a second of it! I have visions of Five US turning into ESPN 8, aka “the Ocho”, from Dodgeball: “And now, live from Arizona, midget-tossing!”

Oh well. Maybe something better will come along.


Emu lives

Curious news. Emu is to come back in a sitcom for kids, with Toby “Son of Rod” Hull as the hand behind the beak this time. Hull has apparently already appeared on stage with the puppet bird a couple of times, so it’s not without precedent, but is licensed sexual harassment and physical assault the best thing for kids these days?


24 movie given the greenlight

Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer

After much mulling, musing and moaning, there’s finally going to be a 24 movie, according to Variety. Kiefer hasn’t signed up for it yet, although frankly the producers would be insane not to spend a good part of the budget, if necessary, to get him on board.

A couple of notable facts

  1. It’s not going to real time. Neither is it going to be 24 hours long. Let’s face it, a 24-hour movie wouldn’t be a great attraction. However, it is likely that part of the film will be in real-time, so if you can imagine the first hour being set-up and the second hour being continuous, you’ve got a good idea of how it’s supposed to work
  2. Parts of it could be shot in London. Clearly, that won’t be the real-time part because having Kiefer standing on the Northern line platform for seven minutes, waiting for the train, only to realise he really needs the City branch which means going up to Euston then coming back down again just isn’t that interesting.

It’s going to occur between seasons six and seven (because you just know there’s going to be a season seven). Since they work something like 26 hours a day, nine days a week while they’re filming and rely on the two or three months they get free between seasons to catch up with their sleep, expect a certain degree of tiredness, hallucinations, irritability, sudden mood swings, etc, in the main characters’ performances


Who are you? Oh crap, you’re real

Imagine this. You’re a kid in a Florida High School. Your teacher has a jolly wheeze. Why don’t we go on a CSI field trip? We’ll dig up stuff – planted of course – and you’ll have to work out what happened using forensic science.

Sounds great, doesn’t it?

Now imagine you’re out in the field, the sun beating down as you gently brush away the dirt and the grime from the artfully placed props. Is this what it’s like for Gil, Sara and Catherine? Wow. This is great. I’m going to be a real CSI when I grow up (good luck kid. The pay’s rubbish, the courses over-subscribed, applicants-to job ratios massive and people have to make do with a magnifying glass and an old distilled water bottle to do anything, most of the time, the budget’s are so tiny).

But what’s this? It’s a hand. Cool. It’s so real-looking. But you can tell it’s fake.

Oh bugger. It’s not. It’s a dead homeless guy.

How much would you sue for?