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Blu-ray Giveaway: Doctor Who Series 7 (Part One)

It seems that the first half of Doctor Who Series 7 only just finished airing, but already today brings the home video release. And, thanks to the ongoing generosity of BBC America, Connect the Pop has three of these brand spanking new Blu-rays to give away. There’ll be more on Doctor Who tomorrow, especially on the show’s role in science education, but for now let’s get right to making one of these discs yours…

Product Details

Content: Five episodes, including “The Angels Take Manhattan,” which represents a key turning point in terms of the Doctor’s companions (no, no outright spoilers here).

Length: Approx. 225 mins + bonus material / 2-disc set

Extras: Bonus features include the BBC AMERICA specials The Science of Doctor Who and Doctor Who at Comic-Con, as well as the Pond Life featurettes, the prequel to Asylum of the Daleks, and The Making of The Gunslinger.

Giveaway Rules

1. Readers with U.S./Canadian mailing addresses please comment on today or tomorrow’s post with a thought on how Doctor Who might be used in school or public library programming, in teaching science or science fiction, or in media literacy education.

2. Simply do this between now and 12:01 am ET on November 16, and the email address associated with your comment will be entered automatically into the drawing. If you don’t see your comment, contact me on Twitter and/or by email (both are provided below).

3. If you win but don’t respond to an email request for your mailing address in 48 hours, I’ll just draw another name.

About Peter Gutierrez


  1. Not just for science, I think it could be used to make learning history fun. There are so many historical figures (Van Gogh, Shakespeare, Churchill, …) that appear on the show. This could get kids interested in learning more about the real folks behind those characters by comparing how they are portrayed in the show to historical accounts. I know I’ve personally hit up Wikipedia (I know, maybe not the most reliable source) after many of the Doctor Who episodes to read a bit more about these figures.

  2. steve weber says:

    Doctor Who would be good in school because it brings the historical characters that these kids are reading in the textbooks to life.. almost like a digital book on screen

  3. Jacqueline Pinn says:

    A great documentary teachers can use is actually on this DVD set called “Science of Doctor Who” It would introduce students to a little bit of each of the major sciences and get them thinking about if things like Time Travel, Alien life and Dalek’s could actually become real.

    • Peter Gutierrez says:

      Yes — thanks for pointing that out: I’ll actually be writing about that featurette in tomorrow’s post. Also, I believe that the BBC posted it to YouTube and possibly elsewhere online, so teachers actually don’t need the DVD if they want to show/project it from a computer. :)

  4. I actually think Dr. Who could be great for many disciplines. For the science minded, Dr. Who is always traveling through (and interacting with) various types of people and landscapes. It addresses everything from pollution, to natural resources, to respect for other cultures and their political and physical boundaries.

    From a media standpoint, episodes that involve literary references (I’m thinking all the way back to the Charles Dickens episode during the Eccleston era) speak to the way contemporary media blend and feed off of each other. Half the fun of that episode is understanding Dickens references, but at the same time there’s a fascinating intersection between classic literature and the science fiction world.

  5. The show would be a great way to talk about history, teamwork, thinking outside the box but the main benefit would be to spur the students imaginations.

  6. Not only for historical figures (which would be a fabulous connection) but for an exploration of alternative history–in most DW stories involving actual figures, the plot twist involves speculative history. It would be a great way to discuss history as something that is fluid and contingent, as opposed to the traditional handed down facts and assumptions, and engage students with thinking about how history could have been altered, had certain events not occurred or occurred differently. Melody makes this observation in “Let’s Kill Hitler” (s6, ep8) where she continually answers teachers’ history questions by saying “because the doctor wasn’t there to save them/stop it/ etc.”. These kinds of discussions could also lead into a literature unit writing either alternative history, first person accounts of historical events, or even fan fiction.

    Many episodes also address ecology (i.e. s3, e3 “Gridlock”) or politics (anything with Slitheen, the Master, Liz 10…) and even fields like medicine (New New Earth, Cassandra, the Face of Bo…)

    So many possibilities…

  7. The show is rich with opportunities to discuss and demonstrate how narratives are built and how perspective/point of view can be used to tell story or add depth and complexity, both as part of the show’s content (perception filters, etc) and in the overall structure. It can be discussed how even though the Doctor is the “hero” of the show (and even that can be questionable sometimes), the character the audience is meant to identify with is almost always the companion. (The Doctor even makes explicit comments at times about how he uses his companions himself as an alternate point of view, to be able to “see” the universe with fresh eyes.) Some episodes also explicitly play with point of view (“Love and Monsters”, “Blink” using the audience-as-participant keeping the angels in stone) while longer story lines, especially with River and the Ponds, leaves you guessing whose time-stream you’re actually following – theirs or the Doctor’s – and which interpretation makes more sense.

  8. Charles Cuthbertson says:

    In addition to its emphasis on science and history, Doctor Who is a deeply humanistic program, one that in a non-patronizing, non-lecturing fashion promotes basic morality, respect for others and their cultures, and compassion. These aspects are ingrained in nearly every episode of the program I’ve seen, making Doctor Who a superb and engaging tool for students learning about science fiction as a metaphoric genre.

  9. I’d love to use this to work with the middle school science teacher (I’m a school librarian). Anything we can do to help the students understand that science/history/literature is FUN and not just something you have to learn in school is very important. We’re already collaborating with writing and research; Doctor Who could add so much more to the classes.