Visit the official Doctor Who website

Visit the official Doctor Who website
Look to the future

Asylum seekers...

Asylum seekers...
Refuge of the Daleks

Doctor Who picture resource

Doctor Who picture resource
Roam the space lanes!

Explore the Doctor Who classic series website

Explore the Doctor Who classic series website
Step back in time

Infiltrate The Hub of Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood

Infiltrate The Hub of Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood
Armed and extremely dangerous

Investigate The Sarah Jane Adventures

Investigate The Sarah Jane Adventures
Fearless in the face of adversity

Call on Dani’s House

Call on Dani’s House
Harmer’s a charmer

Intercept the UFO fabsite

Intercept the UFO fabsite
Defending the Earth against alien invaders!

Uncover the secrets of the Dollhouse

Uncover the secrets of the Dollhouse
Programmable agent Echo exposed!

Hell’s belles

Hell’s belles
Naughty but nice

Love Exposure

Love Exposure
Flash photography!

Primeval portal

Primeval portal
Dressed to kill or damsels in distress?

Charmed, to be sure!

Charmed, to be sure!
The witches of San Francisco

Take on t.A.T.u.

Take on t.A.T.u.
All the way from Moscow

Proceed to the Luther website

Proceed to the Luther website
John and Jenny discuss their next move

DCI Banks is on the case

DCI Banks is on the case
You can bet on it!

On The Grid with Spooks

On The Grid with Spooks
Secret agents of Section D

Bridge to Hustle

Bridge to Hustle
Shady characters

Life on Ashes To Ashes

Life on Ashes To Ashes
Coppers with a chequered past

Claire’s no Exile

Claire’s no Exile
Goose steps

Vexed is back on the beat!

Vexed is back on the beat!
Mismatched DI Armstrong and bright fast-tracker Georgina Dixon

Medium, both super and natural

Medium, both super and natural
Open the door to your dreams

Who’s that girl? (350-picture Slideshow)

Thursday, 21 September 2006

Cover Versions



With David Tennant and Freema Agyeman adorning the latest front cover of the “Doctor Who Magazine”, Issue 374, in which you can win a talking K9 no less, I got to thinking about the covers and asked myself when was the last time they printed a full cover image relating to the original series? I discovered that since the magazine, published every four weeks, proudly announced “We’ve Regenerated!” on the front of Issue 352, and dispensed with the staple binding and adopted the new series logo, the answer is never. They got close with Issue 369 which heralded a “Blast from the Past”, and pictured Elisabeth Sladen as erstwhile companion Sarah Jane Smith with the aforementioned doggy, but this was simply to promote latest episode “School Reunion” and thus nothing to do with the original series.

I discounted images of the TARDIS, as seen on Issues 353 and 350, as these are generic and pertain to all eras of the programme. Dalek and Cybermen covers have been specific to the new series such as the gold Dalek featured on the cover of Issue 356, the Emperor on 358, and, more recently on Issue 370, the newly designed Cyberman, followed, on Issue 372, by the newly designed black Dalek. I want to know why there have been no pictures of Jon Pertwee or Tom Baker, for example? Is the magazine, consciously, only wanting to promote itself to those only mostly interested in RTD’s version of the programme, happy to lose those who have remained faithful to the publication while the show was off air? Or, are they hoping to draw fans of the new to the periodical and get them interested in classic “Who” through the articles within?

I do think the occasional cover harking back to the good old days wouldn’t go amiss. Would it really hurt sales that much to remind everyone that the series has a long and very fruitful history? I had to travel back in time almost two years to find a cover featuring something pre new series! Paul McGann and Daphne Ashbrook reunited eight years on from the TV movie, in Issue 351, published on 9 December 2004, to share their recollections with each other and the readership. This still, strictly speaking, isn’t classic “Doctor Who” I hear you cry! OK, then. Travelling back another couple of months to 14 October 2004, and Issue 349, Colin Baker and Nicola Bryant are on the front, promoting a major feature on the radio adventures of the Doctor and his associates. And, those still not happy that even this doesn’t refer to the television series, as seen on BBC1 between 23 November 1963 and 6 December 1989, then there are many covers to choose from prior to this one! I chose it because it’s the last front cover of a regular issue of “Doctor Who Magazine”, to date, to feature an actor who portrayed one of the first seven Doctors. Maybe it’s time for another McGann cover, this time with Sheridan Smith, but with the same headline as the Colin Baker issue, “Radio Activity!”.

3 comments:

Stuart Douglas said...

Not a magazine I've been very impressed with for long enough - it's basically just an extended advert fro Big Finish and the cannot ber gainsayed (sp?) views of Mr Davies nowadays, from my casual flicking through in WH Smiths.

TimeWarden said...

The magazine ought to cover every aspect of "Doctor Who" as equally as possible as it's still called "Doctor Who Magazine" and not "New Doctor Who Magazine". I'd never heard any of the Big Finish audios until the handful of Paul McGann stories broadcast on BBC7 last year and often skipped reading reviews of them, and the novels, despite heavy promotion of both within its pages.

I've been buying the magazine since late 1983 mainly for the interviews and Andrew Pixley's Archive feature which has long since finished, so I suppose it's become a bit of a habit. I've been thinking of stopping buying it recently, since my views on RTD's "Who" only cemented during the second season, having given his version of my favourite show the benefit of the doubt during its first year.

karensff said...

Hi,

Sorry I haven't been around.

I have to admit that I have only ever bought a few issues of the Dr Who magazine. Very rarely did I find anything of interest in them. I have noticed though that it is usually the new Dr Who that gets front cover space. I can see why it might be nice to occasionally use a classic for the front.

My email is ksime1 at hotmail co uk