Monday, 31 May 2010

Doctor Who "Cold Blood"

Just time for a few quick thoughts about last Saturday's episode. It was an entertaining follow-up to the first part with the threat of a human/Silurian war hanging over proceedings, especially when the lizard lady on the surface doesn't survive the human mother's questioning.

But the real "wow" moments of the episode come right at the end.

Firstly that "crack" reappears, the one that is a rip in the fabric of time and space, the one cause by some unimaginable release of energy.

The Doctor concludes that there must be some "shrapnel" from that explosion in the crack and reaches in. As he does so the other lizard lady (also played by Neve McIntosh) fires at the Doctor. Rory pushes the Doctor aside and get shot. The crack energy reaches out for Rory and the Doctor and Amy realise that he will be wiped from history and will hever have existed. Amy tearfully struggles to hold on to his memory but by the time the Tardis reaches the surface she has forgotten him.

And the other "wow" moment? It's a good one.

The Doctor unwraps the piece of shrapnel to discover it's a piece of the Tardis.

Oh. Dear.

Friday, 28 May 2010

Luther episode 4

Another enjoyable episode of this show. This one features another serial killer who uses a taxi to catch his victims.

Early in the episode Luther is told that the serial killer he put in a coma (at the start of episode 1) has woken up. He goes to Alice to tell her he can't see her any more because his phone and email will be monitored. Alice doesn't take it very well.

Alice disguises herself as a doctor and manages to get the policeman guarding the serial killer to go to another ward. Then she smothers the killer so she and Luther can be together.

When Luther finds out he Smashes Stuff again. Brilliant.

She also breaks the news to Luther's ex-wife's boyfriend that the ex-wife is cheating on him (the boyfriend) with her ex-husband. Yes it's complicated.

Once again Ruth is great as Alice Morgan, coldly calculating and just on this side of barking mad.

As an added bonus here is a nice photo of Ruth from the new issue of the Radio Times.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Doctor Who "The Hungry Earth"

I was a little lukewarm about the last couple of stories but I'm happy to say I enjoyed last night's episode very much.

The Doctor and gang arrive in 2020 Wales where a drilling project has passed 21 km under the earth. As a result something has been awoken. Amy get sucked into the earth in front of the Doctor's eyes and he's reduced to making vague promises about getting her back. Later after a creepy scene in a church graveyard where something is prowing around a small boy similarly vanishes. The Doctor realises he was the last one to see him and had absent-mindedly let the boy leave the church.

However the Doctor manages to capture his own "hostage" and it turns out to be a Silurian, a creature that I believe Jon Pertwee first encounted as the Third Doctor. These lizard people are interesting characters because they evolved on Earth millions of years before us ape-people came along and messed everything up. One could understand them being a bit annoyed at the apes running around on the surface.

Doctor Who makeup has improved greatly over the old show and the makeup on the lead Silurian lady is impressive. Speaking of which I noticed the actress who played said lizard lady was Neve McIntosh who played nurse Donna Rix in Bodies a few years back on BBC3. Talk about unrecognisable.

I also feld that there was more than a hint of the BBC's old Quatermass shows in this episode. In particular Quatermass and the Pit where an ancient alien spaceship is found buried under a London tube station. It was remade as a Hammer movie in the 1960s if you want to check it out.

A good episode and I look forward to the next part.

Felicity Jones The Chalet Girl and Cemetery Junction pictures

The Chalet Girl

Cemetery Junction

Thanks to Enrique

Ruth Wilson, Here’s a face to remember

And another Ruth Wilson article appears this weekend. This one focues on Luther, The Prisoner and her upcoming play Through a Glass Darkly.

Are you saying I might be a nutjob?” I had, in fact, been suggesting that Ruth Wilson is becoming something of a specialist at playing nutjobs. The term was a little brusque, perhaps, but, given her high-profile role as the flint-eyed psychotic Alice Morgan in BBC1’s Luther, as well as her forthcoming turn at the Almeida as an asylum-bound woman, it didn’t seem out of place. Even her Olivier-winning performance as Stella Kowalski in A Streetcar Named Desire at the Donmar last year was a character surrounded by madness, if stoically unaffected herself. Some would argue there is even an element of madness in Jane Eyre, Wilson’s breakthrough television role four years ago.

Read the whole article at

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Black Widow 12 inch figure catches my eye

I've mentioned before how Black Widow is one of my favourite Marvel comic characters. Well, I've discovered that Hot Toys are doing a 12 inch figure based on Scarlett Johansson in Iron Man 2 and she has caught my eye.

Here's the "blurb":

Iron Man 2 - Black Widow 12 inch Figure

The movie-accurate Black Widow collectible is specially crafted based on the image of Scarlett Johansson in the movie, highlighting the newly sculpted head, hair implantation, highly detailed costume and accessories.

* Authentic and detailed likeness of Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in the movie Iron Man 2
* Newly sculpted head with movie-accurate facial expression and make-up
* Real fabric hair implantation
* Newly developed female TrueType body
* Approximately 28 cm tall
* Over 28 points of articulations
* Two pairs of interchangeable gloved palms (one pair of relaxed palms; one pair for holding pistols)
* One extra right gloved palm for posing on waist
* Each piece of head sculpt is specially hand-painted
* One-piece tight dark blue coloured jumpsuit with one belt included
* One extra greyish black coloured belt with pouches and pistol holster
* One pair of leather-like greyish blue coloured platform boots with buckles
* Two pistols
* One pair of bracelets with multiple-bullet design
* Figure base with Black Widow nameplate and the movie logo

Expected 18th December 2010

All well and good. Except for the price; Forbidden Planet are listing it at £149.99!!! Just a wee bit out of my price range.

Royal Mail crushed my posters!

In a diversion from my normal posts let me present this tale of woe. I ordered a couple of James Bond movie posters from a seller on ebay. They were packed well in a good sturdy poster tube but despite this Royal Mail somehow managed to crush the end of the tube. This resulted in my brand new posters being all creased down one side.

I took a few photos for my compensation claim and here are a few of them.

Licence to Kill came of worst.

Thunderball was not as bad but was still creased.

I'm not a happy camper about this. I want to get some replacements but it should be Royal Mail that has to pay for them so I put in a claim. I'll let you know how it goes.

Kelly Sotherton back injury

Longtime readers of my blog thing will know of my admiration of all things related to Kelly Sotherton. I am sorry to read that she has a back injury and will not be competing this year.

Heptathlete Kelly Sotherton has been ruled out of the rest of the 2010 season with a back injury.

The 33-year-old, who won bronze at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, will miss the European Championships in Barcelona in July and the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in October.

"I'm extremely disappointed not to compete this year," said Sotherton. "There are some great events coming up this summer and I wish my GB&NI teammates the best of luck. I fully intend to compete in 2011 and am working towards that."


Oh well, hopefully she'll be all better for the 2012 Olympics...

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Luther Episode 3

Episode 3 and I'm really enjoying this show now. I do find myself looking forward to each new episode. This is largely due to Ruth Wilson's performance as Alice Morgan. I don't think you could find a role farther away from her Jane Eyre.

However be warned that this weeks episode contains some disturbing imagery. The lead bad guy is sick and twisted beyond what I've normally seen in UK cop shows. He's an occultist who has a thing about abducting young mothers and writing in their blood. Told you it was disturbing.

Very early in the episode the boyfriend of Luther's ex-wife is attacked by some girl hoodies. He suspects Luther was behind it but of course it is Alice Morgan who arranged it. She's enjoying pulling strings.

Luther is obviously trying to keep his mind on catching the mad occult guy and at one point goes to Alice to get an "insight" on what he should do. It's a scene obviously and deliberately reminiscent of Silence of the Lambs but rather than take place in an over-stylised movie dungeon it happen in a modern university computer lab. Alice advises Luther to "change the game". And he does.

At the end of the episode Luther and his ex hook up for some passionate smooching in an apartment with no curtains. Predictably Alice is watching from another building and I suspect she's not too happy.

It looks like things start to kick off next week.

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Doctor Who "Amy's Choice"

In this week's episode the Doctor, Amy and Rory are reunited five years in the future. Amy is heavily pregnant and Rory is sporting a hideous ponytail. And it might be best to avoid all the residents of the old folk's home.

And in this week's episode the Tardis looses power as it falls towards a "cold star" and the Doctor, Amy and Rory are reduced to wearing "Peruvian folk group" ponchos to keep warm.

Which one is real? It's important because, as Toby Jones says, if you die in a dream you wake up, whereas if you die in reality you, er, die.

Nothing Earth-shattering in this episode. The viewer knows at least one of the realities is fake so the sense of jeopardy is lessened. However the Doctor is forced to face his "friendships" with his companions and Amy is forced to realise how she feels about Rory.

Felicity Jones UHQ photoshoot link

I just found a set of ultra high quality Felicity Jones images at

Here are two of the images that I have rezised. You can find the fill-size versions at the above link.

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Felicity Jones Albatross news and Cheri premiere photos

Thanks to Enrique for these Felicity Jones updates. First of all there's some news on her movie Albatross at

Cheri premiere photos

Bonus portrait

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Ruth Wilson in JFK movie (maybe) and Luther episode 2

Just a quick alert that is reporting a potential Ruth project about JFK with her playing Jackie!

Now, on to Luther...

Last night's second episode was very interesting. Ruth wasn't in it as much as she was in the first episode because the story focused on Sean Pertwee's son assassinating police officers in revenge for his dad being locked up. However Alice Morgan was around and clearly up to no good. In one scene she's disguised as a hospital volunteer and chats to Luther on the phone while sitting next to the serial killer he put in a coma.

Later in the episode Luther's wife and boyfriend hear a noise downstairs and investigate. There's Alice at the kitchen table drinking a glass of wine and chirpily enquiring if Mrs Luther knew her husband put said serial killer in the coma. Zoe's silent rely speaks volumes and Alice happily lets herself out with a cheery goodbye.

My favourite moment in the episode was the scene at the end when Alice and Luther meet up on the bridge where they had a Dramatic Confrontation at the end of the previous episode. I think Luther's last line was something like "one cup of coffee doesn't make us friends" and off they went practically arm-in-arm! I guess no one else "gets" him and they've made a connection. Bless.

This is not your usual cop show...

Lara Pulver in True Blood

A number of sites including are reporting the news that Lara Pulver will play the recurring role of Sookie’s fairy godmother Claudine in the third series of True Blood.

This is of interest to me as I became a big fan of Lara when she turned up in the third series of the BBC's Robin Hood this time last year playing Gisborne's sister Isabella.

I've not seen much of True Blood beyond the first couple of episodes, but I guess I'll be making an effort!

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Doctor Who "The Vampires of Venice"

In this week's installment we get exactly what it says on the tin, i.e. vampires in Venice. Sort of. It turns out they are alien fish people that are disguising themselves as humans.

I'm a bit in two minds about the episode. It was fairly enjoyable but I didn't feel much a threat from the fish people. I was also a little disappointed that the vampires didn't turn out to be, well, vampires. I had assumed the episode would be about a humanoid alien race with big teeth that were responsible for vampire legends. Oh well.

We did get a reason for why vampires cant be seen in mirrors. It's because their "perception filters" don't work on reflections. So now you know.

Good comic timing from Matt Smith, nice vampire ladies slinking around and a new companion Rory (Amy's fiancee) added to the mix for bickering possibilities are all positives.

My favourite moment in the episode was probably when the Doctor holds up what he thinks is his psychic paper to someone. It turns out to be his library card, complete with photo of William Hartnell!

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Luther Episode 1

Episode 1 of Luther was on BBC1 last night and seeing as Ruth Wilson was in it I made a special effort to watch it. Actually it did require a bit of extra effort as BBC1 Northern Ireland broadcast the episode almost two hours later than the rest of the country. This was because we in NI had the dubious pleasure of watching the Northern Ireland Leaders Debate.

Please note I use the words "pleasure", "leaders" and "debate" in the loosest possible sense of the words. But I digress...

On his first day back on the job Luther is given the task of investigating the murder of a husband and wife. The only witness is their daughter Alice Morgan played by Ruth Wilson.

Luther early on realises Alice must have committed the murders but he cannot prove anything. However he is sure that the chink in her armour is her intelligence and she will be too arrogant to stop letting something slip eventually. After she is released he confronts her in an attempt to try and provoke her. This in turn reveals his own arrogance at thinking he can outsmart her.

Ruth's character Alice promises to be an unwelcome presence in Luther's life in future episodes. Ruth as always is a revelation. Alice looks likes she is having too much fun and Ruth gives her a presence that puts me in mind of a cat lapping up a particularly delicious bowl of milk, especially when sparing with Luther.

To be honest not a lot happens in the first episode but I think it's very much a setting-the-scene type of episode and the series probably should be assessed as a whole. For example I wonder what Alice has in mind for the serial killer in the coma...

Writer Neil Cross wrote the following on the BBC website:

I love John Luther, naturally. But I also love unreservedly the character of Alice Morgan. In fact, on that first night out with the cast I seem to recall telling Ruth Wilson (who plays her) that in many ways I considered Alice to be the perfect woman. She looked at me, it has to be said, with a degree of horror.

Alice was a formidable role - chilly and flirtatious, murderous and vulnerable, high-minded and caustic, sometimes in the same sentence. But Ruth makes her absolutely real, and utterly riveting. There's a moment in episode four where she truly frightens me.

I was on set when Idris and Ruth filmed their first scene together. It was a spine-tingling event - but I don't think it's good for me to hang round on set, because that's just not where a writer belongs. So I made myself scarce and let them get on with their jobs.


News on the first ratings can be seen here:

PS There was also a good scene where he kicks the crap out of an innocent door.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

The Prisoner on DVD and Luther update

I was a little surprised to see the The Prisoner is out on DVD in the UK this week, exactly half-way through ITV1's broadcast of the six-part series. Normally TV DVD's are timed to appear the Monday after the last episode of the series has been shown.

In any case it's out there for those who can't wait to see how it all turns out. Here's the Jim Caviezel-shaped cover art:

In addition to the six episodes the DVD contains the following special features:

• Deleted scenes
• The Making of The Prisoner
• Character profiles
• The Prisoner read-through
• Jamie Campbell-Bower interviewing Ian McKellen
• Comic Con 2009: The Prisoner panel
• Inside The Prisoner

In other Ruth Wilson developments we have episode 1 of Luther on BBC1 tonight. I had assumed that Ruth was only in the first episode but looking at the Radio Times today I was very pleasantly surprised to see her name listed in episode 2's cast list. Can we hope for Ruth in all six episode I wonder? If so I give a resounding "yippee".

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Doctor Who Flesh and Stone

This episode continues from the cliff-hanger at the end of previous one. The Doctor and gang make their way into the ship with the angels in pursuit.

While they make their escape the Doctor notices Amy "counting down" from ten, although she remains unaware of it. He discovers that an angel has got inside her and will take over when she gets to zero. The only way to stop it is for her to close her eyes. But the only way to stop and angel is to look at it...

Also the crack in Amy's bedroom wall in episode 1 makes another appearance. It appears to be following her...

There are some creepy moments in the episode such as Amy's countdown and the soldier forgetting that his comrades ever existed after they go to investigate the crack.

Also we discover that River Song was in prison for killing a "good man". Methinks the next time the Doctor and River meet will explain who that was.

This was not a bad episode by any measure, but it did feel like it was just a smaller part of the "season arc" rather than a stand-alone episode.