The Doctor Who Franchise

American Influence, Fan Culture and the Spinoffs

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About the Book

As Doctor Who nears its 50th anniversary, it is very much a part of British popular culture, and the Doctor has become a British icon. Nevertheless, thanks to BBC America and BBC Worldwide’s marketing strategy, as well as the Doctor’s and his companions’ recent in-person visits to the U.S., the venerable series is becoming more susceptible to an “American influence,” including the possibility of becoming “Americanized.” Doctor Who and recent spinoffs Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures offer American audiences very different insights into the Whoniverse and have met with varying degrees of success. Whereas Torchwood became a U.S.-U.K. co-production, The Sarah Jane Adventures was largely mismarketed. To complicate matters, the interrelationships that keep the Doctor Who franchise alive through radio dramas, audiobooks, comics, novels, etc., during hiatuses in television broadcasts, may give U.S. and U.K. audiences different understandings of the lead characters—the Doctor, Captain Jack Harkness, and Sarah Jane Smith. Although the past decade has been an exciting time in the Whoniverse, the Doctor—and the franchise—are poised for yet another regeneration.

About the Author(s)

Lynnette Porter is a professor in the Humanities and Communication Department at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida, and has written extensively on television and film.

Bibliographic Details

Lynnette Porter
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 200
Bibliographic Info: bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6556-9
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0091-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments vi

Introduction 1

1. The Culture of Doctor Who 9

2. Doing Business with the U.S. 37

3. The “Americanization” of British Television 59

4. Intertextuality and the Doctor 78

5. Intertextuality, Captain Jack, and the Future of Torchwood 89

6. “You Don’t Kill Sarah Jane!” 119

7. Tweet Success: Social Media and Television Marketing 132

8. Friday Is Fez Day: The Popularity of Conventions 148

9. The Cosmos Is Their Oyster 164

Bibliography 179

Index 189