Night Terrace: the new project from the Chaps!

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Splendid Chaps may have ended…but the moment had been prepared for!

Night Terrace is an eight-part sci-fi comedy audio series, produced, written by and featuring the Splendid Chaps team! Jackie Woodburne (Neighbours) stars as Anastasia Black, a scientist who used to save the world – and whose quiet retirement is cut short when her house starts travelling through time and space. We’re crowdfunding Night Terrace on Kickstarter, and you can find out more by checking out the campaign, or by visiting the Night Terrace web site.

Night Terrace/Home

Surprise! Just when you thought you’d got rid of us, we thought we’d pop up and tell you all about our new project, Night Terrace! Our Kickstarter campaign is now underway and you can find it here! But rather than just spam your ears, Ben and John thought they should at least record a mini-episode since so many of you have sent lovely messages hoping we’d be back. Since Night Terrace revolves around a mysterious house, we decided to discuss the notion of “home” in Doctor Who in the traditional Splendid Chaps cafe, Penny Farthing in Northcote.

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Our new audio comedy series will follow the adventures of ex-world saving science adventurer Anastasia Black, played by Jackie Woodburne (Neighbours’ Susan Kennedy), as she tries to figure out why her house has started to travel through space and time – and how to get back home. It will also feature chaps Ben McKenzie as her sidekick Eddie, and Petra Elliott as the enigmatic “Sue”. The first series is written by John Richards, Lee Zachariah, Ben McKenzie and David Ashton, and you can find out more at nightterrace.com.

NIGHT TERRACE

What I Learned From Doctor Who

Well, here it is: the last released episode of Splendid Chaps. And what a suitable topic to go out on! John, Ben and Petra discuss what they’ve learned from Doctor Who over the years with guests comedian, actor and teacher Rob Lloyd (Who, Me.) and writer and editor Liz Barr (Chicks Unravel Time) in an episode recorded for the Stonnington Library Service’s [untitled] festival at Toorak/South Yarra Library on Saturday, November 16 2013. There were prizes, surprises, all the usual Splendid Stuff – and a wonderful spoken word performance from the one and only Emile Zoey Baker! (You can find her piece, “Dr Who’s Tom Baker is My Real Dad”, on her web site.)

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We’re not gonna see you again. Not like this. Not with this daft old podcast. And before we go, we just want to say you were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic.

And you know what?

So were we!

The Other Splendid Chaps: The Companions

Time for a bit of time travel: on Tuesday, November 19 2013, as part of Melbourne City Library’s week-long Doctor Who Festival, Ben, John and Petra were joined by writer, director and podcaster Lucas Testro  and broadcaster, documentary maker and podcaster Marian Blythe to talk about those other splendid chaps: the companions! Plus a live musical performance of a lost Doctor Who classic tune by Emma Heeney.

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Splendid Chaps By Request

Six topics, one hour, four chaps. Yes, it’s our bonus “By Request” episode in which Ben, John, Petra and fourth chap David Ashton discuss topics requested by our Pozible backers! And we go back, back to our very beginning, to the place where we recorded our very first episode: Penny Farthing Espresso in Northcote, Melbourne.

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A big thanks to all our listeners, our live audiences throughout 2013, and of course tremendous thanks to all our Pozible supporters, without whom this episode and our live Sydney show would never have happened.

It’s not entirely goodbye, though; while this is our last recorded episode, there are a couple of extras from November we’ll be releasing in January and February next year. And you watch out for more info about our 2014 project, Night Terrace, in the coming months.

By the way, we recorded this on Christmas Eve, and look: Santa Capaldi visited us!

David Ashton, Petra Elliott and Ben McKenzie with presents from "Santa Capaldi" on Christmas Eve.

The Splendid Chaps are visited by Santa Capaldi on Christmas Eve, at the recording of Splendid Chaps by Request. Oddly, we never saw John and Santa Capaldi at the same time…

 

The Splendid Chaps Christmas Special

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night! Yes, it’s our last live (and lively) show, recorded on December 15th back where we started this mad journey, at the Bella Union in Melbourne. It’s also a Christmas party to bid a a fond farewell, and you’re invited – along with guests Thomas Caldwell, Lee Zachariah, Adam Richard, Janet A McLeod, Myke BartlettAlexandra TynanFee Plumley and Dr Djoymi Baker. Plus there’s a Dalek, the magic of theatre, music from the Time Lads, songs sung by the chaps themselves…and perhaps even a Christmas miracle. It’s an emotional time, Christmas, and we’ll miss you all, so let’s go out with a bang!

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It’s not quite the end, though…watch out for our last new episode, Splendid Chaps By Request, on December 31, and we also have a couple of extras from November up our sleeve we’ll put out next year. Oh, and we might be working on a little something new…

The Not-So-Splendid Chaps: Monsters and Villains

We went to Sydney! Thanks to all our wonderful Pozible backers, on Saturday, November 30 the chaps travelled north to the Roxbury Hotel in Glebe to record this episode with guests Alice Fraser, Maddie Palmer and Steven “Bajo” O’Donnell, all about the villains and monsters of Doctor Who. Join us as we try to work out what the difference is between villain and monster, what various monsters represent, and which ones scare us the most and why. And of course we wrap it all up with a song: Keira Daley, backed by Alice, Peter Lead and Catriona Wimberley, cover a Doctor Who related track, 1980’s “(I Wanna Be) Doctor Who”, originally by Adelaide band Jackson Zumdish.

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A collage of images from our Sydney show

A collage of images from our Sydney show; photos by Carrie Hardie.

Eleven/Future

It’s the big one! Our actually-released-on-the-anniversary spectacular features hosts Ben McKenzieJohn Richards and Petra Elliott discussing Matt Smith, the future, and plenty of other Doctor Who goodness with guests Stella Young and Justin Hamilton, plus music by house band The Time Lads and an original song by guest musical superstar, Casey Bennetto. Yes, our year nears its end with this, the final Doctor/Theme episode of Splendid Chaps, recorded at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne on November 21, 2013.

Big thanks to John, Petra and David for all the hard work they’ve done on post-production getting this massive episode ready in just two days!

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Don’t forget you can go into the draw to win the complete box set of season seven of Doctor Who (Matt Smith’s last! *sob*) on DVD, courtesy of our friends at BBC on DVD! To enter the draw, just comment on this episode at splendidchaps.com. How do you feel about Matt Smith? Does he make a good introductory Doctor? Do you love him but dislike his era, or do you think the Grand Moffat is the best thing to happen to Doctor Who in years? And what about the future in – and of – Doctor Who? Comment by December 14 to be in the running, and we’ll announce the winner at the recording of our Christmas Special on December 15.

The Eleven/Future viewing list

One again we’ve been so busy we almost forgot to deliver a text version of the viewing list! You still have four days until Eleven/Future, though, so here’s your homework viewing for the last of our regular Doctor/Theme episodes, which will be recorded on November 21st at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) in Melbourne (full show details here). Also, a quick reminder that this show is sold out – sorry if you didn’t manage to get a ticket! But it will be released, by hook or by crook, on the Day of the Doctor, November 23! (Good luck John!)

Your homework viewing for Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor is:

  • The Eleventh Hour
  • Vincent and the Doctor
  • The Girl Who Waited

If you’ve never seen Matt Smith’s Doctor before, we realise you might miss a few things, but don’t worry – these episodes mostly work on their own!

To experience THE FUTURE! as envisioned by Doctor Who, we suggest:

  • The Enemy of the World (Patrick Troughton, 1967-68; six episodes) 1
  • Day of the Daleks (Jon Pertwee, 1972, four episodes)
  • Frontios (Peter Davison, 1984; four episodes)
  • The End of the World (Christopher Eccleston, 2005; one episode)
  • Utopia (David Tennant, 2007, one episode)

There are plenty of others, of course, including The Tenth PlanetInvasion, arguably the entire UNIT era 2, most of Tom Baker’s first season – The Ark in Space, The Sontaran Experiment and Revenge of the Cybermen - The Robots of Death, The Invisible Enemy, Kinda, Snakedance, Terminus, Vengeance on Varos, The Mysterious Planet and Terror of the Vervoids (from Trial of a Time Lord), Paradise Towers, Dragonfire, The Happiness Patrol, Battlefield, Survival, Dalek, Fear Her, The Beast Below and The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood. 

But we’re sure you have your own suggestions – so let us know in the comments!

Notes:

  1. Note The Enemy of the World is currently only available via iTunes
  2. As previously stated, Splendid Chaps policy is to not engage in discussions of the UNIT dating controversy.

The Splendid Chaps Christmas Special (live show)

Yes, it’s the end…but the moment has been prepared for!

All right, we know we’ve said that before. But now, after eleventy episodes of Doctor Who discussion covering the Doctor, his friends and enemies, and topics ranging from clothes to evil to comedy, it’s time to bid farewell to hosts Ben McKenzieJohn Richards and Petra Elliot (and our invisible fourth chap, sound engineer David Ashton). To see out this year of Doctor Who, the chaps look at all the Time Lord goodness that didn’t fit into the rest of the year, including not-quite-Doctors Peter Cushing and Richard E Grant, spin-offs The Sarah Jane Adventures and K9 & Company, and much much more.

There’ll be special guests both new and old, including Cyberman designer Alexandra Tynan, comedian Adam Richard, technoevangelist Fee Plumley, academic Dr Djoymi Baker, comedian and quiz master Janet A McLeod, writer and Bazura Project guy Lee Zachariah, journalist Myke Bartlett, film reviewer Thomas Caldwell and maybe even one or two more! Plus songs from house band The Time Lads, a Christmas Dalek, and a special Christmas lucky dip of Doctor Who prizes, with all lucky dip proceeds donated to two very Doctorish charities: the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) and Medecins San Frontières (MSF).

We’d love to see you one last time!

Space: The Bella Union, upstairs, Melbourne Trades Hall, corner of Lygon and Victoria Streets, Melbourne
Time: Sunday, December 15; doors open from 4:30 PM
Accessibility: This venue is wheelchair accessible; please contact the venue for lift access.
Tickets: $20 (including booking fee)
Bookings: via bellaunion.com.au online, or at the ACMI box office (subject to availability)
Podcast: not yet available; released 23rd of December, 2013.