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4.5 out of 5 stars86
4.5 out of 5 stars
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on 24 May 2013
This book is absolutely brilliant! All the info on the Doctor you ever wanted to know! Accompanied by lovely black and white illustrations. Great for all Doctor Who geeks out there. Impossible to put down. Covers all the Doctors right up to Matt Smith. Perfect celebration of the longest running Si-FI TV series.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 15 May 2013
I have been anticipating the release of this book for almost a year - before I even knew what it was, in fact, due to teasing Twitter mentions by its illustrator Ben Morris. (Whose unique stylised work many Doctor Who fans will know from the pages of Doctor Who Magazine/Doctor Who Adventures and last year's charity Doctor Who book Behind the Sofa: Celebrity Memories of Doctor Who.)
I'm pleased to say the finished product does not disappoint. It never pretends to be more than it is - a fun, witty collection of assorted Doctor Who minutiae. It is very well presented; a nice, solid hardback volume in similar size to hardback novels, with a striking yet simple full colour cover (by Lee Binding) and then in black-and-white throughout. The illustrations (as previously mentioned, from Ben Morris) are in a simple, striking and effective black and white caricature style that sits well with the sometimes-less-than-serious (but certainly never comedic) content. Ben has a unique graphic style that remains both faithful to its sometimes complex subject matter and yet clear and dynamic to look at.

The authors, Cavan Scott and Mark Wright, have worked hard to compile a huge amount of information from both sides of Doctor Who. The fictional adventures of our favourite Time Lord are represented just as well as the behind-the-scenes production info. Expect timelines, actor biographies, character summaries, episode listings, fact compilations and quotations.
It's possible that the style of the book may not be to everyone's taste. There's a lot of detail for the casual fan to absorb, yet not as much real in-depth knowledge that the hard-core fan would expect. (The thanks section duly acknowledges the book's debt to painstaking Doctor Who researcher Andrew Pixley. His work, and that of others like David Howe, Mark Stammers and Stephen Walker, sets the standard in detailed television production research.) I believe, however, that this is a book that can be enjoyed as a fun collection of information. At this price (currently under £8 on Amazon) it costs no more than a couple of issues of Doctor Who magazine - and indeed LESS than the SFX Magazine Doctor Who special published in 2011. This should be bourne in mind when judging it. As always, I refer anyone seeking really in-depth Doctor Who production knowledge to the works of both Telos Publishing and Miwk Publishing. This is more of a digest, a gathering of numbers and facts to celebrate the huge achievement that is the show's Fiftieth anniversary. Fun to flick through and enjoy - there's bound to be something you didn't already know - plus there's all those pretty pictures too.
Don't let these words about in-depth content make you think the book is style-over-substance though. A reader who had never seen Doctor Who, given only this book, would come away knowing all the key dates, cast, events, stories, characters, production times, monsters and much more. Plus 40 different ways to destroy a Dalek, which can't be bad.

With the relatively high ratio of small-font text to pictures, maybe this isn't a book for the youngest of fans, but certainly anyone who loves the show and is aged (about) 10 years or older is likely to find much enjoyment within its pages.

To summarise, I think this is a book that all Doctor Who fans will enjoy. If you're seeking a gift for someone who likes the show, you'll be hard pressed to find anything that matches this in this price bracket.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 31 May 2013
Call an Ambulance! My brain is officially frazzled, lacking the ability to absorb any more information as it spirals uncontrollably out of control.

And it's all with thanks to BBC BOOKS' Police Box design wrapped, DOCTOR WHO - THE OFFICIAL MISCELLANY compiled by Cavan Scott & Mark Wright.

Should it include a `health warning' sticker on the cover? Certainly. Your life will never be the same again.

Irrelevant and irreverent in glorious & simultaneous measure that is, literally, regrettably for the post-lunch washing-up of crockery & utensils as it slowly plays host to colonies of bacterial mould as it remains unattended for days, literarily addictive. Ideally, the publishers should have designed into the publication `pace-pages' (never heard of them? Me neither...) that stop you firmly in your reading tracks, with a gentle reminder that "Please, feed the cat" or "Homework to complete" or "Go to Work and earn money".

How does knowing that Daleks have screeched their infamous battle-cry 496 times across the series, or that Matthew Waterhouse is the youngest actor to play an original TARDIS companion, or that the Third Doctor's `flying car' was actually called `Alien' help you improve your daily life? It doesn't but DOCTOR WHO fans are, in Freudian psychology terminology, `anally retentive', scrabbling for every nuance of information whether factual or incredulously creative, and DOCTOR WHO - THE OFFICIAL MISCELLANY will sate that feral appetite.

Impressively, the publication painstakingly charts and abstracts anomalous information from across the 50-year history of the series (and even the major `players' behind the genesis of the series) though the bias is marginally slanted toward the NEW SERIES (to, I assume, meet the expectations of the current purchasing demographic).

Usefully, now that SERIES 7 has completed its televised run, the highlight of this officially sanction tome is four-page assessment - or, quite frankly, demystification - of who and how is River Song (and all of her `incarnations'), and such is the detail either the authors have brains the size of a planet and offspring of Douglas Adams or the pause button on their remote control is worn through as they assimilate the exponential strands of the character's life/lives together into one cohesive lineation. Impressive work, and, as this is an `official' publication it would seem that, perhaps, the `timeline' has been combed through by the series' Executive Producer (and, effectively, River Song's `parent), Steven Moffat.

Categorised into effective eight chapters and with an extensive Appendix, DOCTOR WHO - THE OFFICIAL MISCELLANY is like a printed Sonic Screwdriver; multi-functional, credible and essential, and it certainly supersedes the BBC BOOKS 1997 `official' publication, DOCTOR WHO - THE BOOK OF LISTS (Justin Richards & Andrew Martin).

Furthermore , DOCTOR WHO - THE OFFICIAL MISCELLANY would be an ideal as an entertaining `random choice' App that selects innocuous and divergent facts & trivia to entertain and beguile.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 May 2013
If you're a fan of 'Doctor Who', whether it's the classic series or the new rebooted series, I would recommend picking up this book, it covers it all and then some! Reading more like a digest of everything Whovian from the last 50 years, this hardcover book has it all.

From the very first episode, and all the way up until the 2012 Christmas special, the 384 pages are bursting with the facts and figures from the entire series. It's all presented very well in a hardback volume, with a cover illustrated by Lee Binding and accompanied by black and white interior illustrations by Ben Morris. 'Who-ology' details the timelines, actor biographies, character summaries, episode listings, fact compilations and quotations. There's a lot of detail for the casual fan to take in, yet not as much that a hard-core fan might expect, but it's still fun to flick through the pages and get lost in the mythology of the Doctor.

For the price, you can pick this up for less than a tenner, this is a book that fans of Doctor Who will enjoy. A perfect celebration of the longest running science fiction TV series.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 17 June 2013
It's simple - if you are a Whovian, you need this book! Even if you do not class yourself as a Whovian, but enjoy doctor who, this book is still worth a whirl... Enjoy!
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VINE VOICEon 25 August 2015
Doctor Who Who-ology (Dr Who)
The 50th Anniversary of the Dr series of programmes brought out a plethora of books covering the programme and its history. So this book ( again by BBC books) is but one of many covering ( in this case) up to 2012/13.
I have probably ( at one time or another) seen all of the episodes since the first dramatic episode in November 1963 (broadcast delayed by the death of President Kennedy , if I remember correctly) .(I will never know if I am correct as , sadly , so many of the early episodes ( film or early video) were trashed by the BBC and odd film copies only arise now in odd parts of the world like Nigeria – not that Nigeria itself is odd – just that finding Dr Who film there is somewhat unusual)
So to the book – it starts with a 50 year diary of the Who timeline
It proceeds to discussing companions, villains, sonic screwdrivers and onto such gem trivia as to which actors also featured in Coronation street , the archers, James Bond , Harry Potter and other worthy programmes and films . Famous first and last words , time lord abilities , UNIT , the Tardis and its technology and the like are among many of the topics tackled. ( Too many to mention here)
It ends by listing by month/year of the Who episodes (with dates of transmission but little about the actual plots )
The book is for the dedicated WHO trivia buff aiming to bore the local pub to tears but if you wanted exact details and plots of the programmes in order you may need to look elsewhere – still give it a 5 star rating for effort and shear zaniness.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 26 May 2013
I love this bok. It is great if you are a whovian. It has everything about Doctor Who. From the very first episode to the Chirstmas Special 2012 with Clara (Jenna-Louise Coleman) I Absolutely love this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 27 February 2015
This is a good book if you like statistics,who said or did what,why they said/did it and to what effect.All there is to know about the first fifty years of the series,episodes,Tardises,(Tardi?),sonic screwdrivers,companions and most importantly the various incarnations of the Doctor and lots of info you wouldn't even think of were it not for this book.As has been said in other reviews,this is not so much a book to read from cover to cover - more a book full of facts,figures and details - a book to read between books!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 2 September 2014
Love this book, lots of background information and little nuggets of trivia that Whovians will lap up. I did, however, find a couple of mistakes - such as suggesting Colin Baker filmed the regeneration scene, which he didn't. These minor mistakes aside, a thoroughly enjoyable and well researched hardback.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 29 December 2013
I bought this as a Christmas present to myself and am very glad I did. There are plenty of facts but it is easy to browse or dip into without having to wade through copious amounts of text.

The only criticism is that inevitably it is out of date - roll on the 60th anniversary update!
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