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January 2008 Archives

January 30, 2008

Doctor Who + Google Trends III

Filed in: Doctor Who, Internet.

As Google has the data for 2007 up, we can now look at the Google Trends graph for Doctor Who last year:

[Google trends for 2007]

Comparing it with 2006's graph, it looks like there's a fairly consistant pattern emerging - queries roughly double once the show starts playing, spiking when the finale is aired, then in December there's another spike when the obligatory Christmas special airs.

[Google trends for 2005 - 2007]

Stacking all three years together, we can see that queries increased over 2006, though the difference between the Last of the Time Lords and Doomsday spikes is not as pronounced as the difference between Doomsday and The Parting of the Ways. I expect this trend will continue over 2008, though it will be interesting to see what effect decreasing output to 3 specials will have in 2009.

Continue reading "Doctor Who + Google Trends III"

Posted at 8:35 PM | Comments (4)

January 28, 2008

TSV 54

Filed in: Doctor Who, TSV Online.

TSV 54 is online! 54 was done as a double issue with TSV 53, hence the lack of regular features such as the editorial.

The major article this time is Andrew Pixley's article By Any Other Name, exploring 60s BBC documentation to discover exactly what the names for the first twenty or so Doctor Who stories are. Back then, like now, each episode was individually named, and it wasn't until later in William Hartnell's era that stories were given an overall name onscreen. Thus the first Doctor Who story is known variously as "An Unearthly Child", "The Tribe of Gum", or "100,000 BC" with the title used in any particular reference book depending largely on when it was written and who it was written by.

Unfortunately it looks like they couldn't really decide on a title at the time, at least for most of the stories, so I tend to stick with the traditional titles as applied to the official BBC video and DVD releases. I'm therefore sticking to "An Unearthly Child" for Serial A. :)

There's also another comic strip, titled Whispers and featuring the fifth Doctor and Turlough. And an opinion piece by David Lawrence titled Why Paul McGann is the Best Doctor, though I'd be willing to bet that he's revised his opinion since the new series began...

I had two articles in TSV 54: Confessions of a Melaphile, and a collaboration with Peter Adamson and Jon Preddle: An Addition to the Discontinuity Guide: Slipback, both of which have been online for some time as part of the Mel Bush page and DiscContinuity Guide, respectively.

See also: write-ups by Paul and Jamas.
Previously: TSV 53

Posted at 7:36 PM | Comments (0)

January 25, 2008

An Open Mind

Filed in: Doctor Who, Website Management.

I help out in a technical capacity with a Doctor Who fanfiction archive where recently the moderators made a number of changes to the site policies. Some of the authors didn't like the changes, thus proving you can't please everyone all of the time, but I honestly think that the changes (I had little to do with them myself) have had a positive impact on the site.

Then there are the authors who tried to flagrantly break the rules, got abusive to moderators, and set up LiveJournals named "fighting_spoon" in order to complain about how unfair it was that they got banned. You can read about them in this fandom_wank post.

Which is why I try to avoid running anything.

Posted at 7:54 PM | Comments (0)

January 23, 2008

Big Day Out '08

Filed in: Music.

Last Friday, as well as going to see Cloverfield, I went to the Big Day Out in Auckland. No, seriously. Look, I even have photographic proof:

[Alden with T-shirt]

Yes, I bought a Björk T-shirt so that if the mood takes me, I can dress up as the cover of Volta. Woohoo!

Continue reading "Big Day Out '08"

Posted at 8:35 PM | Comments (0)

January 21, 2008

Friday Movie: Cloverfield

Filed in: TV & Movies.

Yes, this is late. :P

On Friday I went to see Cloverfield, a film from Lost creator J.J. Abrams about the experiences of a group of people during a monster attack on New York. It's filmed Blair Witch style, leading me to dub it the Blairzilla Project.

This is a smashing film and, unlike last week's didn't feel the need to have things jump out suddenly every five minutes just to make the audience jump. That said, there are plenty of scary moments. The movie's framed as video taped by one of the main characters using a handicam, and despite there being no incidental music at all, the mood in any particular scene is quite obvious. I thought the monster itself didn't quite look real enough, but it's hard to say if that's just because visualising something of that size is difficult or if it was something else.

My rating: 9/10

Posted at 7:44 PM | Comments (2)

January 16, 2008

Phone Box

Filed in: Tetrap.Local.

[phone box]

A thing of the past - this old-style NZ phone box graces Post Office Square in Wellington. I took this picture on Saturday, after the book launch for Newtons Sleep.

I should start a photo blog category, really.

Posted at 7:07 PM | Comments (0)

January 11, 2008

Friday Night Movie: I Am Legend

Filed in: TV & Movies.

As something I'm thinking of making a bit of a regular thing, I went to see I Am Legend, starring Will Smith as Robert Neville, the last man alive after a virus wipes out 90% of Earth's population and turns the rest into zombie-vampires.

Will Smith at a desk

This movie is fantastic, and you should go and see it for Will Smith's incredible acting alone. Be warned though that the film makers take every opportunity to try and make you jump out of your seat, which is a pity because a) the film really didn't need that sort of thing, and b) I'm too young to have a heart attack. Robert Neville's slow descent into madness is beautifully done, as he attempts to cure as the virus, despite the fact it's been three years since the initial outbreak.

IMDB's trivia section for this movie mentions that at one point Michael Bay was going to direct. The mind boggles.

Edit: Now with spoilery rant (under the cut)

Continue reading "Friday Night Movie: I Am Legend"

Posted at 9:06 PM | Comments (1)

January 9, 2008

Star Trek Search Terms

Filed in: Internet.

People keep finding the DiscCon entry for "Real Time" using the search text "What Star Trek race has exceptional hearing?" This, as it turns out, is actually a question from a "geek test". Why are you people cheating by googling the answer?! You can't expect to get an accurate result if you cheat!

Now, ordinarily I'd say Ferengi, because with ears that size... but then I'm sure Spock mentioned having exceptional hearing several times in the original series (followed by Dr McCoy making a racially-insensitive crack about his pointy ears). Also, Borg probably have cybernetically-enhanced hearing. Plus Jem'Hadar are probably bred with genetically-enhanced senses. And then there are the Hynerians who - no, wait, they're from Farscape.

Glad I could help!

Posted at 7:22 PM | Comments (5)

January 7, 2008

Transformer Fighters!

Filed in: Transformers.

File under "Things that make you go... what?!"

Shortly before the live-action Transformers movie came out on DVD here, this advert appeared in The Groove Guide:
The Battle to save New Zealand begins...

As you can see from the website advertised (warning: automatically playing music!) Video Ezy appear to be the ones responsible...

Posted at 10:22 PM | Comments (0)

January 3, 2008

Boppin' Doctor Who screengrabs

Filed in: Doctor Who, Games.

A thread on the NZDWFC boards reminded me that there were a bunch of Doctor Who references in the Apogee game Boppin'. Check it out:

Rescuing a Dalek

Continue reading "Boppin' Doctor Who screengrabs"

Posted at 4:41 PM | Comments (1)


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