The Doctor Who Changed the TV Universe (Full Presentation) – Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video]

In this presentation given at the 2022 San Diego WhoCon I had the chance to trace the many ways Doctor Who changed the TV universe. By focusing on the interesting and innovative things the many writers did with the show across the years we were able to see the Who footprint by becoming the first narrative program to reach 50 years on the air, the first to create a spin-off across the ocean, and a show alongside Star Trek that created the Con-craze that brought the world of cosplay to the mainstream. Perhaps most importantly, a love of Doctor Who lead more Americans to watch programming from other countries – from Korean dramas to Mexican telenovelas – which has so enriched our culture.

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The Doctor Who Changed the TV Universe (Full Presentation) – Dr. Rosanne Welch

 

Ready to present at San Diego Who Con via Instagram [Photography]

Ready to present at San Diego Who Con via Instagram [Photography]

Had fun as always at the San Diego Who Con talking about the many reasons I’ll miss Jodie Whittaker’s time as the first time the Doctor regenerated into a female form. Then we watched the finale and cried for lots of reasons – most especially how well-written it was as a way to punctuate the importance of her era.

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Emma Thompson on Adapting “Sense and Sensibility”

Emma Thompson on Adapting

On one of my strolls through YouTube, I went down the rabbit hole of wonderful interviews with screenwriter Emma Thompson and landed on this “Making of” Sense and Sensibility.

While it is fun to hear about the casting and the costuming, the best part (naturally) is near the end.

In “Adapting Austen” they discuss choosing the (at that time) relatively unknown-in-the-States Emma Thompson to adapt the novel and then the segment goes over her process in writing the film.

Producer Lindsay Doran had seen some of Thompson’s UK sketch comedy show (then airing on PBS) and knew her favorite novel would need a writer who understood that Austen was funny in her comments about the societal rules she and her sisters were forced to abide.

No surprise Thompson asked for adaptation advice from Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, who had adapted Howard’s End, the film Thompson was then acting in (and which would lead to her 1993 Oscar for Best Actress.

Creative women helping other creative women for the win!

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30 more On From Idea to Execution from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

I recently presented a talk on Torchwood (Why Torchwood Still Matters) where I highlighted a few ways in which the show (airing from 2006 to 2011) came up with progressive and innovative ideas that are being used by other franchises today. 

I always enjoy attending the SD (San Diego) WhoCon because the audiences are so well-informed on the Whoniverse and Whovians love Captain Jack and the crew that made this spinoff program so engaging.

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30 2more On From Idea to Execution from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

Transcript:

Right and even there’s a moment who’s discussing The Waters Of Mars” where but it’s not special enough. It’s just another episode but it’s one of these you know hour and a half ones. I got to do better. What would make it better? And then he writes, what if The Doctor knows all these people have to die and he can’t tell them? Now there are stakes. Now it means something. Now it’s a special and he literally – so it’s a really cool. It’s called “The Writer’s Tale.” Again it’s really thick but it’s great. You’re literally reading the on-time ideas coming through their head and then to the very end and some of the stuff when he’s doing “Torchwood Children of Earth” he’s talking about and then at the very end when he writes his last episode and they go to the table read and then he goes home and he’s like now what do I do? Like now what do I do?

 

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29 From Idea to Execution from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

I recently presented a talk on Torchwood (Why Torchwood Still Matters) where I highlighted a few ways in which the show (airing from 2006 to 2011) came up with progressive and innovative ideas that are being used by other franchises today. 

I always enjoy attending the SD (San Diego) WhoCon because the audiences are so well-informed on the Whoniverse and Whovians love Captain Jack and the crew that made this spinoff program so engaging.

RMW Rosanne Signature for Web

29 From Idea to Execution from Why Torchwood Still Matters (2021) with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video]

 

Transcript:

Now I think it’s really important to think about how then the writer/showrunner has to decide which of these episodes will be mine and what do I want to say with mine and even when it’s not mine, I’m going to do the final rewrite. I’m going to do the polish to make sure it sounds like all these episodes are coming from one voice, right, which is really why all of Russell’s stuff sounds like Russell. In fact, anyone here ever read “The Writer’s Tale” which is his book –– oh my gosh i should have brought a copy of it. It’s really thick. A journalist named Benjamin Cook asked him in the last season of the David Tennant era “Could I email you and ask you questions about where you’re at with your stories and then we’ll publish a book out of it” and Russell was like sure whatever. So what you get are things like, okay so what are you thinking about tonight and Russell will go “I don’t know. It just occurred to me what if water was like acid and could kill you? Can I play with that?” and a few pages later it’s like “You know what? I’m trying to do an episode on Mars. What if martian water is actually what could kill you before you know it you get to he’s writing “Waters of Mars.” So you literally watch from the idea through the execution of the story.

 

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28 The Homage from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

28 The Homage from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

Transcript:

Now this homage business reminds me when I teach film history, we do this in movies all the time. Forget just remaking a movie. All you do is you take a storyline and you flip the genders and you have a new movie, right? So if you know “It Happened One Night”, it’s one of the first movie ever to win all five of the major Oscars. A very big deal. Robert Riskin wrote it. It’s the story of a –– Clark Gable is a reporter who’s following an heiress who’s run away on the eve of her wedding and of course, they fall in love on their little journey and by the time they get home they’re going to get married. If you move to the 70s and “The Electric Horseman”, Robert Redford is a rodeo star who’s become a celebrity. Jane Fonda is the reporter. He’s run away with a major expensive horse because they’re gonna like put the horse down and do something and then she follows him to get a story but they fall in love. So it’s exactly the same story. Just flip the genders right? So movies are always ––  I mean writers always do this. We’re homaging something we loved by givingit a little flip. So I think that “Father’s Day” and “Demons the Punjab” fall into that.

 

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27 TV Helps People See The Future from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

27 TV Helps People See The Future from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

 

Transcript:

In the same way, we could do a whole episode on you know Star Trek and Lieutenant Uhura that’s why Mae Jemison is the first African-American astronaut because she saw Lieutenant Uhura when she was a kid. She’s like oh look a black woman could be involved in space and Tada she’s the first astronaut. So just amazing the power of Television even more than films because TV comes into your house. Really I think an important thing.

 

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26 The Companions and History from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

16 The Companions and History from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

Transcript:

So to think about what’s a piece that even in the UK they need to remember their own history and always not the good parts right and the choices that were made. So what a perfect way to use Yaz and what a cool thing you want to see your grandmother’s wedding and then Oh gee it’s a wedding. It’s a wedding for Rose and these are places you shouldn’t haven’t been. So I think that’s a lovely bit and of course, I’m tracing that all the way back to the Original “Star Trek” which is the ultimate sci-fi on tv right, and this beautiful episode – which if you don’t know what you need to know – but won several science fiction awards back in the day by Harlan Ellison “The City on the Edge of Forever” right. Which is where Kirk falls in love with a woman and when they before – Joan Collins, exactly, before “Dynasty” – and then learns – spoiler alert – that she is she’s pushing for peace before World War II and if she succeeds Hitler will have time to rise and he will, in fact, take over the world. So she has to die and you’re like No No No No No, he’s never fallen in love – yeah it’s great. Very funny. Very funny and just the other day right William Shatner is now going to go up to space at the age of 90. Like wow. Amazing how TV affects things. Really it’s William Shatner. He’s just an actor from Canada but he’s Captain Kirk right?

 

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25 Referencing the History of the Show from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

25 Referencing the History of the Show rom The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

Transcript:

Now what you have to do when you’re taking over a franchise like this that’s been around forever and you’re the showrunner, you have to remember its history and I think you have to homage that to the new audiences. So that they feel like this is new but it’s also old, right? I’m still in a world I understand and I appreciate and for me, that’s demons of the Punjab because “Father’s Day” was such a beautiful episode for Rose. I know. Any time a character, of course, wants to go back and see a moment in history that they shouldn’t be tampering with and that’s the temptation of being in a TARDIS. You can do that. Should you do that? So I think it’s so cool that he could have done that with any of the characters right? Graham could have gone back to see something maybe that happened to him when he was younger. Obviously, Ryan could have gone back 10 years. He’s kind of young but I don’t know something might have happened when he was 12 that made him upset but he decided to have Yaz go back and to go back to a part of history that – again in the United States – the Partition – when did I ever learn about that in some high school history class. Barely right unless you did maybe Western Civ and even then they didn’t really get deep into it.

 

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24 The Voice of the Writer from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

It was great to be able to attend this year’s SD WhoCon in San Diego and present this lecture on “The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years” in which I discuss how successful I think showrunner Christopher Chibnall was in making that transition.

It gave me a chance to talk about the creative work of a showrunner/screenwriter while also reconnecting to some friends we had met at this same convention some 3 years ago – and to talk about one of my favorite subjects – Doctor Who!

24 The Voice of the Writer from The Difficulties and Delicacies of Writing the First Female Doctor in 50+ years [Video] [Doctor Who]

Transcript:

Now, this was great out of Witchfinders. Obviously, he had to keep reminding the audience that this is different and I have to deal with this difference and we have to look in history about this difference right? So literally that’s him, I think, that’s Chris Chibnall talking to the audience okay. If i was still a bloke I could get on with the job and not to waste time defending myself all right but I understand that – and think about it they were defending themselves in the public a little bit in the whoa what a choice you made what a crazy choice why’d you do that. So, in a way, sometimes when I’m watching movies I’ll hear a line and I’ll say oh that’s the writer telling us how they feel right now right and putting it into the mouth of the character and this is one of those lines for me. I really think that was the impression that it gave me.

 

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