If ever we needed to trace a single week as the highlight of this month's entertainment roster, then the coming one would fit the bill without question. From Doctor Who's 50th Anniversary Special to the Xbox One's launch, from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire to Need for Speed: Rivals, from An Adventure in Space and Time to The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, the level and quantity of major releases in the next seven days is simply astonishing!
Let's neither dilly nor dally any longer, then, and in the words of Rizzle Kicks, 'skip to the good bit'. Here's our definitive round-up of everything you need to watch out for this week!:
- DOCTOR WHO: THE ULTIMATE GUIDE- BBC Three kick off a Doctor Who-intensive week (well, it is the 50th Anniversary, after all!) with a glorious retrospective on the show's dense history. Monsters, companions and Doctors are here in full force to get fans ready and exhilarated for The Day of the Doctor, in what promises to be the ultimate warm-up treat...(Monday 18th, BBC3)
- THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE- Katniss Everdeen is back in action, as the much-anticipated follow-up to 2012's The Hunger Games (4.5/5) arrives in cinemas worldwide. Catching Fire's action commences as Katniss and Peeta cross the twelve Districts of Panem for their Victory Tour, only to find that the Capital has other devastating plans in order to quell the rebellions which have emerged ever since the 74th Hunger Games. A blockbuster adaptation of Suzanne Collins' greatest novel, this is an unmissable motion picture experience! (Thursday 21st)
- AN ADVENTURE IN SPACE AND TIME- Shortly before the Eleventh Doctor, the Tenth Doctor and the War Doctor enter a new adventure across the fourth dimension and beyond, Mark Gatiss is offering fans a touching glimpse into Doctor Who's inception. Starring David Bradley, Jessica Raine and Brian Cox, Adventure depicts the world of 1960s England, and the trials and tribulations the show's original production team underwent in order to bring an icon to BBC One. (Thursday 21st, BBC2)
- XBOX ONE- Amidst all of the Doctor Who presents to be unwrapped this week, a different yet similarly juicy gift awaits gamers too. Microsoft's Xbox One is launching worldwide on Friday, with initial titles for the next-generation console including Forza Motorsport 5, Dead Rising 3, Killer Instinct, Ryse: Son of Rome and Need for Speed: Rivals. With the PlayStation 4 set to release next week, prepare for the commencement fo the ultimate hardware war once more...(Friday 22nd)
- THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: A LINK BETWEEN WORLDS- It's been a fair while since Nintendo fans received the brilliant The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword- two full years, in fact! Thankfully, the team's latest effort starring Link, The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, looks to be a spectacular return to form for the franchise. Featuring intriguing connections to the series' original 2D chapters, Link Between Worlds retails exclusively on Nintendo 3DS and 2DS. (Friday 22nd)
- THE CULTURE SHOW: YOU, ME AND DOCTOR WHO- You'd think that viewers already had enough Doctor Who content to deal this week, but BBC Two are taking the quantity of releases ever further. This special edition of The Culture Show investigates Doctor Who's impact on British and worldwide culture in the last half-century, presented by lifelong science-fiction fan Matthew Sweet and housing one or two satisfying cameos from none other than Matt Smith! (Fri 22nd, BBC2)
- DOCTOR WHO: THE DAY OF THE DOCTOR- What could the Doctor's darkest day possibly entail? And what does his most precious secret mean for the entire universe? These game-changing questions will be answered in spectacular fashion as Doctor Who's 50th Anniversary Special finally broadcasts fifty years on from Saturday November 23rd, 1963. Matt Smith, David Tennant, Jenna Coleman, Billie Piper and John Hurt all headline this incredible feature-length blockbuster adventure, which fans can experience on BBC One, on international networks across the world simultaneously or on the big-screen in 3D at cinemas everywhere. Suffice to say that you will not want to miss the live showing of one of Doctor Who's most anticipated and most significant narratives ever! (Saturday 23rd, BBC1 & Cinemas)
- DOCTOR WHO LIVE: THE AFTERPARTY- And to round off an amazing night of Doctor Who celebrations, BBC Three have one final programme in store. The Afterparty is a grand successor to The Day of the Doctor- hosted by Zoe Ball (grit your teeth, those who remember her contribution to Doctor Who Live's Twelfth Doctor reveal!), the one-off special will incorporate live reactions from fans to the 50th Special, video congratulations from One Direction (yes, really!) and many other celebrities and plenty more besides. Don't expect the world of this one, but if the adrenaline rush that The Day of the Doctor needs to continue in a celebratory form, then this is the perfect solution...(Saturday 23rd, BBC3)
Next week, Oliver and Moira face a potentially catastrophic trial in Arrow: State V. Queen, Nintendo's iconic plumber returns in Super Mario 3D World, Doctor Who fans get the chance to reclaim lost episodes on DVD with Doctor Who: The Enemy of the World and Marvel's Agents of SHIELD continues with its ninth instalment!