Tonight, or today, depending on you time (its all wibbly), the first episode of Doctor Who's eighth season premieres. With that premier comes new gadgets for the Paternoster Gang (Madame Vastra, Jenny and Strax). Last November, Blue Peter (a BBC childrens show that has existed almost as long as Who itself), ran a contest for kids 6-15 to design a new sonic device for either Sontaran Commander Strax, Madame Vastra or Jenny Flint. Winners were told the inventions would be featured in an upcoming episode.
This is the episode. 13-year-old Connor from Somerset, 11-year-old Arthur from Hampshire, and seven-year-old Amber from Kent were announced as the winners, just before Christmas (what a x-mas present). Connor designed a sonic gauntlet for use by Jenny. Arthur's design was a sonic lorgnette (a pair of handheld eyeglasses) for Commander Strax. Amber's winning device for Madame Vastra was a sonic hat pin that works as a remote control for her carriage but can also turn into a sonic sword that increases in size with the flick of a special switch.
Sonic Hat Pin--Amber
Steven Moffat said "All the finalists, they've all won because every single one of these ideas is good enough to be in Doctor Who . . They're all brilliant . . . There were so many stories there, that's what impressed me. It wasn't just the idea or the drawing or something simple, it was the whole back story to what this does, what its limitations are, what it costs you, how it gives you something. It's more than just design, it's actual narrative, and a huge exercise of the imagination."