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Monday 3rd September 2001

TWIDW Alert 9/3 - Good News Europe, Bad News Canada
(posted 3rd Sep 2001, 3:45pm - TWIDW post #0037)
We interrupt your daily life for a This Week In Doctor Who special report. Please do not adjust your computer screens.
Two Doctor Who TV news items of note have broken since Friday's (8/31/2001) column.
First, the good news:
BBC Prime (BBC for Europe, Africa, and Asia) has doubled the number of Doctor Who episodes airing each week. Instead of airing 1 episode 4 times a week, they will air 2 episodes 3 times a week.

The new airing times (Central European Time - convert for your local time zone):

Saturday 4PM - episode 1
Saturday 4:25PM - episode 2
Late Sunday 12:30AM - episode 1
Wednesday 12:00PM - episode 1
Thursday 12:00PM - episode 2
Late Friday 12:30AM - episode 2

BBC Prime is claiming that the first airings will be on Saturdays. I am not yet convinced of that - they seem to be beginning Frontios with the Wednesday airing this week, instead of waiting for Saturday.

BBC Prime has aired Doctor Who since 1995, but only aired one episode a week, so they are still on their first run of the series.
Now, the bad news, from Canada:
BBC Kids IS still launching on Digital Cable this November. And it IS still airing Doctor Who. However, according to the list of digital channels at , BBC Kids is only going to be on Shaw cable systems. So, if you don't have Shaw, no need to bother getting digital cable for Doctor Who - at least at launch time, you won't have it.
BBC Canada is apparently being offered to everyone, but it is not airing Doctor Who, or any sci-fi programming (see for their launch lineup - link not up all the time).
The bright spot in this is that we can now resolve a mystery from 23 Feb 2001 earlier in the year. A subscriber to this column told me some months back that a representative at Shaw Cable was claiming that they were going to get Doctor Who on Shaw cable systems this year. Since most fans (myself included) assumed that BBC Canada or BBC Kids would get Doctor Who, the claim seemed rather odd. But if BBC Kids is the Shaw station the representative referred to, then the odd claim is solved.

This has been a special report from This Week In Doctor Who.

Benjamin F. Elliott