Shiny Shelf
By Eugene Jones on 23 May 2011 Comments Off

After three BBC series shot entirely in the UK, ‘Torchwood’ comes back later this year with a fourth series shot partially in the US, subtitled ‘Miracle Day’. Following on from the surprise critical success of the high-concept mini-series ‘Children of Earth’, ‘Miracle Day’ also starts with a big idea – one day, no-one on Earth [...]

By Mags L Halliday on 12 May 2011 3 COMMENTS

contains spoilers… for ‘Lord of the Rings’.
Steven Moffat has a thing about spoilers. You’d have guessed it, given he snuck the word into ‘Doctor Who’ and then turned it into River Song’s catchphrase. But his recorded complaint about fans posting spoilers made BBC Breakfast News (and elsewhere).
I agree with Moffat. The kind of person who [...]

By Mags L Halliday on 06 January 2011 4 COMMENTS

The return of 165 Eaton Place is compact and lively, with only the odd wandering accent to let it down.

By Shiny Shelf on 27 December 2010 Comments Off

Like Scrooge, we’re a bit at sea about what the future holds for our favourite kinds of nonsense.

By Shiny Shelf on 25 December 2010 Comments Off

One late Christmas Ever Ebenezeer Scrooge was visited by three spirits who showed him the past, the present and the Yet To Come. This is like that, but with three reviewers & Shiny’s usual pop culture nonsense. Merry Christmas.

By Mags L Halliday on 17 September 2010 Comments Off

The third series of ‘Merlin’ has started with grim spectacle, aside from the odd slapstick scene that’s escaped from a different tone meeting.

By Jim Smith on 28 July 2010 2 COMMENTS

I thought I’d like ‘Sherlock’, because I like both Sherlock Holmes apocrypha and Steven Moffat scripts, but I didn’t think it possible it would surprise me. Thrillingly, I was both right on the first count and very, very wrong on the second.

By Shiny Shelf on 29 June 2010 11 COMMENTS

So, ‘The Big Bang’ went off and there’s no more ‘Doctor Who’ until Christmas. Luckily, we’re here with a recommendation list of ten old ‘Who’ stories (well, not exactly ten, but we’ll get to that later) that are worth watching to help the next six months pass a bit quicker.

By Jonn Elledge on 24 June 2010 2 COMMENTS

‘Doctor Who’ the series, like Doctor Who the character, has a tricky habit of regenerating, with producers and other creative types moving on. The current season, which ends this Saturday, marks the first time the show has made that transition since its 2005 relaunch – and even by the standards of such jumps this was a risky one.

By Mags L Halliday on 24 May 2010 Comments Off

A couple of years ago Philip Glenister, TV’s Gene Hunt, swore he “wouldn’t do bloody ‘Tin Machine’” so it’s best to assume that this really is the end of the ‘Life on Mars’/'Ashes to Ashes’ franchise. Huge spoilers ahead…

By Mark Clapham on 06 May 2010 1 COMMENT

Luther, the first British star vehicle for Idris Elba, is a combination of lightweight detective show cliches and preposterously grandiose villainy that isn’t so much bad as a bit baffling.

By Mags L Halliday on 16 April 2010 4 COMMENTS

‘Ashes to Ashes’ is not a great TV drama. It’s enjoyable, and a pleasant lightweight watch for the weekend. But it’s not a great police procedural series, and it’s not an overly complex mystery series.

By Mags L Halliday on 29 March 2010 1 COMMENT

‘Eddie Izzard, Marathon Man’ follows the comedian as he attempts to run 43 marathons in 51 days. The Olympic sports doctors and trainers are aghast when he arrives at their centre for training. He’s never run a marathon before: “I’ve run for the bus.”

By Mags L Halliday on 21 October 2009 Comments Off

This ‘Emma’ isn’t clueless…

By Mags L Halliday on 19 May 2009 Comments Off

I can’t seem to stop watching ‘Robin Hood’…

By Mark Clapham on 29 March 2009 Comments Off

… they take up most of our time: recent UK TV crime series ‘Whitechapel’, ‘Moses Jones’, and ‘Red Riding’ hit DVD.

By Mags L Halliday on 24 December 2008 Comments Off

A 21st century ‘Wizbit’.

By Mark Clapham on 30 November 2008 Comments Off

Bleak and beautiful.

By Mags L Halliday on 01 April 2008 Comments Off

Season one of ‘Love Soup’ didn’t quite taste right, but season two has fixed the recipe…

By Mark Clapham on 05 January 2008 Comments Off

Was it me, or was this a fairly quiet Christmas for the BBC?

By Jim Smith on 19 December 2007 Comments Off

The BBC’s new adaptation of ‘Oliver Twist’ offers high production values and a cast stuffed with ‘names’.

By Mark Clapham on 22 November 2007 Comments Off

‘Doctor Who’ has a long history with the BBC’s ‘Children in Need’ charity telethon…

By Mags L Halliday on 16 October 2007 Comments Off

That don’t impress me, Much.

By Mark Clapham on 02 October 2007 Comments Off

In the first three episodes of this teatime ‘Who’ spin-off the Slitheen return, the Gorgon rises, and the Sontarans get a namecheck…

By Jon de Burgh Miller on 09 July 2007 Comments Off

Over the last few years Doctor Who has built a tradition of ending each season with a multi-part epic where the Doctor confronts a major enemy from his past. For the conclusion of the current season it was the turn of the Doctor’s old nemesis the Master.

By Mark Clapham on 23 June 2007 Comments Off

‘Utopia’ is low on plot, but high on major developments…

By Mark Clapham on 15 June 2007 Comments Off

Following ‘The Empty Child’, ‘The Doctor Dances’ and ‘The Girl in the Fireplace’, writer Steven Moffat continues his faultless run of ‘Doctor Who’ stories with ‘Blink’…

By Jonn Elledge on 06 June 2007 Comments Off

‘Human Nature’ is one of the best bits of television ever broadcast under the label ‘Doctor Who’.

By Mark Clapham on 23 May 2007 Comments Off

Fun in the sun…

By Jim Smith on 12 May 2007 Comments Off

‘Doctor Who’ newcomer Stephen Greenhorn peppers his first script for the show with allusions;

By Mark Clapham on 02 May 2007 Comments Off

The 1930s are inescapably associated with a certain kind of straightforward adventure story…

By Jonn Elledge on 22 April 2007 Comments Off

If you’ve spent any time in the last two years in the festering cesspool that is ‘Doctor Who’ fandom, then you’ll know there have been two distinct reactions to Russell T Davies’ reinvention…

By Mark Clapham on 03 April 2007 Comments Off

To have lost both of your original leads by the third season of a series may be considered careless, but on balance it doesn’t seem to have done ‘Doctor Who’ any real harm…

By Mark Clapham on 03 January 2007 Comments Off

No bite, but plenty of suck.

By Eddie Robson on 03 January 2007 Comments Off

Sometimes different versions of a text can complement each other, but this is a case where experiencing one first is pretty much guaranteed to spoil the other…

By Jim Smith on 02 January 2007 Comments Off

You could be forgiven for thinking that Sydney Newman’s forty year old creation had taken over Xmas 2006 entirely.

By Eddie Robson on 14 December 2006 Comments Off

The BBC may have caused a bit of noise this year with its decision to cancel ‘Top of the Pops’ but it has, very quietly, kept the show ticking over…

By Mags L Halliday on 06 December 2006 Comments Off

The tradition of the Christmas Special is embedded in British culture…

By Jim Smith on 24 September 2006 Comments Off

Surprisingly restrained in its use of graphic violence the first episode of BBC One’s drama-documentary series ‘Ancient Rome – The Rise and Fall of an Empire’ boasted outstanding production values and an extraordinary central turn from Michael Sheen.

By Eddie Robson on 31 July 2006 Comments Off

It was fundamentally wrong-headed for TOTP’s final edition to be an exercise in nostalgia: a compendium of material from the past, linked by ancient DJs…

By Jon de Burgh Miller on 18 July 2006 Comments Off

It was always going to be difficult to live up to ‘The Parting of the Ways’, so people were expecting great things from the conclusion to the second season of Russell T Davies’ ‘Doctor Who’…

By Shiny Shelf on 18 July 2006 Comments Off

Belated Billie bye-bye.

By Eddie Robson on 25 June 2006 Comments Off

It’s perhaps unfortunate that ‘Fear Her’ comes straight after ‘Love & Monsters’ in this season, because after an episode in the company of Elton, stuck on ‘the slow path’, what we could really do with is a big old cosmic epic…

By Eddie Robson on 25 June 2006 Comments Off

Traditionally, ‘Doctor Who’ has often managed to make a virtue of necessity…

By Mark Clapham on 11 June 2006 Comments Off

To the Doctor, a devil.

By Eddie Robson on 27 May 2006 Comments Off

Mark Gatiss’ previous ‘Doctor Who’ episode, ‘The Unquiet Dead’, attracted some criticisms of playing to the gallery…

By Eddie Robson on 17 May 2006 Comments Off

For once we’ve been able to peep at an advance copy of this week’s ‘Doctor Who’: however, you’ll find no spoilers here…

By Eddie Robson on 15 May 2006 Comments Off

Considering it’s one of the most shopworn sci-fi clichés in circulation, ‘Doctor Who’ has done surprisingly few alternative universe stories…

By Mark Clapham on 07 May 2006 Comments Off

Steven Moffat’s ‘The Empty Child’ was one of the highlights of last year’s series of ‘Doctor Who’: funny, scary, romantic and ingenious. With ‘The Girl in the Fireplace’, Moffat has done it again – this is as good as ‘Doctor Who’ gets…

By Jon de Burgh Miller on 02 May 2006 Comments Off

The Doctor Who New Adventures were a series of novels published during the 1990s that bridged the gap between the old and new series of the television show. ‘School Reunion’ shows that the thinking behind those books was way ahead of its time…