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FROM THE SFX OFFICE

Half the team are on holiday and the other half spent yesterday afternoon watching movies, anyone would think we didn’t have a 148-page magazine to finish

[caption id="attachment_37611" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="The champagne we won in Future Publishing's excellence awards this month."] [/caption]

In the SFX Office it never rains, it pours, so it’s no surprise that when one member of the team decides to go on their hols, two more decide to join in the party. As sod’s law would have it of course multiple absences in SFX Towers can mean only one thing, we’re a smidge behind on issue 202 with precisely three finished pages in the can and a week to go. If you could see the look on production editor Russell’s face right now…

One of the absentees, Rich, is recovering in France after dedicating the past few months of his life to birthing his very own Joss Whedon special (it’s not as dirty as it sounds). The double mag goes on sale next Thursday and features all new interviews and features with the Wheonverse’s biggest icons including Nathan Fillion, Anthony Head, Eliza Dushku and 14-pages dedicated to our chat with the man himself. And that’s not all because also in the spiffing wallet is a whole separate magazine brimming with a complete TV and movie guide to the works of Whedon,  even Alien Resurrection . The things we put ourselves through for you.

Deputy art ed Catherine has been living the good life in Greece’s sunny climes, but is back in the UK now and off for a trip to Alton Towers (jammy so-and-so). Dave B meanwhile is spending his time off over the border in North Wales, stopping in the original Village, Portmeirion, on the way. That still hasn’t prevented him sending the team work-related emails on a regular basis, however. He might not be able to perform all his Editor-In-Chief duties, but he can at least dispatch Rover to bring back a fleeing Number Six.

The team were shocked this morning to find that early-bird Dave G wasn’t in the office beavering away on his regular morning sfx.co.uk updates. Rumours circulating round the office included everything from a wonky alarm clock to alien abduction, that is until he strolled in half and hour later and told us about the argument he’d been having with a lorry driver who blocked his car in his driveway. You won’t like Dave G when he’s angry.

What with living in Bristol, Ian was very excited to discovered that Doctor Who was filming there earlier this week for the first time ever (hey, Cardiff stole Being Human from us, so it's only right!), 15 minutes down the road from where he lives, so he ambled along to take a quick look. As expected, there was pretty much nothing to see... When you get invited on set in an official capacity they always carefully select days when there is really cool stuff to watch, so we're always happy to wait for those! But it was kind of fun to be on the other side of the fence with the denizens of Gallifrey Base, and his girlfriend was very excited to get a glimpse of Karen Gillan, which was the main reason for heading down - you can't take your partner along on official set visits! His other highlight of the week was a 45-minute phone interview with Swedish author John Ajvide Lindqvist on Monday morning - he's the author of the book Let The Right One In , and has a new book called Harbour (out on 30 September). Did you know that he used to be a stand-up comic, and a street magician? He also really, really knows his Morrissey B-sides, and is a big fan of Clive Barker. Look out for the interview in issue 202. Ian’s also been busily commissioning stuff for another SFX special (the one after the Joss Whedon special). Can't tell you what it’s about yet, but it's all shaping up very well.

Regular readers will be delighted to hear that last night Jon, Jordan and Nick headed to Russell’s house to do a Couch Potato for issue 203. We’ll keep the subject of our evening’s viewing secret for now, but we can reveal some juicy secrets, such as Russell’s 500-strong Spider-Man comics collection and his other collection of breakfast cereals (the loon). The less said about the warped candles, upside down mirror and bar of soap on the conservatory roof the better. By the end of the day much tea had been consumed (but not green tea as Jordan and Nick turned their noses up at it), different discs had been spun (everything from The Hurt Locker to ‘70s sitcom Not On Your Nellie which Jordan watched in utter perplexity) and banter exchanged. Look out for it in a couple of months in the mag.

In sports news, Russell grabbed a brace in a fantastic 6-2 victory in the Future Cup on Monday night. Then sneaked a swim at the pool.

Nick is rushing to complete this month's Development Hell before fleeing to France for his first holiday of the year. He's heading to the Cote d'Azur, and hopes to live out all of his Roger Moore in The Persuaders fantasies. If that fails he'll head to Pinewood and fake it with rear projection and stock footage. In other news he's feeling a little guilty for being quite so dismissive of Russell's attempt at a cup of tea at yesterday's Couch Potato. But it did look like liquidised moss.

Jordan on the other hands has no regrets at refusing the revolting cuppa, though he did enjoy the proper brew Russell made him after. Inbetween watching stuff for the mag (and new episodes of Chuck of course) Jordan has been making his way through an epic Buffy rewatch and watched “Once More With Feeling” for the first time in years this weekend. He’d forgotten just how much he loves that episode, but now worries that means he’s only one step away from finding out he’s a Gleek.

Ade is mega busy with the next edition and has no time for mobile phone companies calling to sell him an upgrade. He couldn’t resist playing the Star Wars phone game where you quote a line, so imagine the jolly female's reply when she heard this after  asking if he had time to talk: “Uh, we had a slight weapons malfunction, but uh... everything's perfectly all right now. We're fine. We're all fine here now, thank you. How are you?”  Ha…. She didn’t want to talk anymore. How Strange!

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Random quote of the week: “It looks a bit like John Barrowman’s Christmas tree…”

Whose shoes? (Last week’s answer: it was Ian’s tie! And if you don’t believe us, the proof can be found above)

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