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Doctor Who; All seasons
Topic Started: Sep 2 2012, 11:20 AM (1,933 Views)
KMInfinity
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First, I never commented on the Christmas episode in the S6 thread.

The Doctor, the Wife, and the Wardrobe.
A lovely homage to C.S. Lewis, and a nicely wacky Doctor outing with lots of teetering on the edge of just too damn cute, and then it somehow works and you tear up anyway. So many really great lines and such a nice finish with the Ponds. I just rewatched it before the premiere and it held up great.

Asylum of the Daleks
I knew this was the beginning of the loss of the Ponds, so it made sense there would be issues. I loved seeing the Dalek Parliament, but they just don't seem to have the same 'threat level' any more. I kept laughing at the punning on 'eggs' and exterminate. Clever, but breaks the mood a bit.

Between the skeletons in the crashed space ship and the Doctor's comments about milk for the souffles, i knew Oswin would be a dalek, so I was mostly waiting to see how it was played. I liked that she got to CHOOSE to be human in the end - a key DW theme. Maybe she didn't get annihilated when the planet was torched? I'd like to see a 'friendly' dalek as a recurring. Lots of folks thought the girl playing Oswin was the new companion, and have now written her off. (I'm spoiler free for the fairwell of the Ponds and the addition of a new companion - even to the point that I'm not entirely sure the Ponds are done...) Wonder if it would work to have The Doctor with a dalek companion? That would be twisting the history quite a lot.

This episode seems to be a stand alone, with very little forward arc

I still miss David Tennant, but Matt Smith has grown into the role for me so I can enjoy the show without thinking back to the Tennant years at all.
Edited by KMInfinity, Sep 2 2012, 11:21 AM.
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bilki
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I missed the Christmas episode. But knowing that it was an homage to C.S. Lewis will motivate me to record it the next time they do a marathon. I think I've mentioned before that The Chronicles of Narnia is one of my favorites. I've enjoyed some of his other works of fiction, too.

Asylum of the Daleks

*I liked this one, which was a relief because I still had a bit of a bad taste in my mouth the from the finale of the last season. The Parliament of the Daleks was so cool. Loved seeing all the different Daleks there in one room. Maybe it's because I remember them as a kid but the threat level is still there for me. I see what you mean, though, about the "eggs/exterminate" thing breaking the mood. I don't thinks it's nearly as bad as what they did to the Cybermen last season. I was surprised Rory thought they were saying "eggs," as "exterminate" should be known throughout the universe, LOL. Has he no knowledge of the Daleks???

*Also liked that Oswin wiped the Doctor from the Daleks' collective memory. Cool way to reboot the rivalry between them.

*Quite surprised the Doctor didn't realize the Daleks see him as their predator. I know they've called him "The Oncoming Storm" in the past but it was the first thing that came to my mind. I just went and read the synopsis of "Genesis of the Daleks" (the first Dalek story with Tom Baker as the Doctor) and it says that the Time Lords sent him to interfere in the creation of the Daleks, so he started this in their eyes.

*Jenna-Louise Coleman was pretty awesome as Oswin. I was rooting for her to be the next companion soon after she appeared on-screen. I feel a little silly for not figuring out she was a Dalek. I wondered how she hadn't been converted. And then he kept asking about the milk.

*Thought it curious that the Doctor encouraged Amy to feel scared, because it wasn't Dalek, after he had mocked them earlier for being too scared to come to the asylum planet.

*I love Amy and Rory, and their dynamic with the Doctor. I wasn't completely sold on them being broken up but I did appreciate their argument over Rory's claim that he loved her more. I'm sad that they're going but a little excited for a new companion. I still remember being upset (as a kid) when the Doctor sent Sarah Jane Smith on her way. But it didn't take me long to "love" Leila, the companion who followed.
Edited by bilki, Sep 5 2012, 11:48 PM.
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KMInfinity
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I'm still mourning Donna Noble. So I'll be okay when the Ponds toddle off. :P
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bilki
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What's funny is that I thought about how you felt Donna didn't get a proper send off while writing my post about this episode. Wasn't her last episode Journeys End, another Dalek-centric episode?
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KMInfinity
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It's not that I think she had a bad send off in Journey's End, it just was so sad how she ended.

And then the teaser in the 2010 special where she ALMOST got her memory back, but didn't and got married instead. She didn't WANT a safe, traditional life, and that's what she got.
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bilki
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Dinosaurs on a Spaceship

*Not my favorite kind of episode but it was fun and playful. I see some comparing it to Love and Monsters, which I haven't seen, but it doesn't sound like a good kind of comparison.

*While I didn't see the point of having Nefertiti and Riddell along for the ride, it was interesting to see Rory interact with his father. The bickering robots made me chuckle.

*Was that foreshadowing when the Doctor told Amy she'd be around until his end, then she responded with him being around until hers? I'm hoping she doesn't die.

*I've seen some surprise that the Doctor set up Solomon to be killed by the missiles. I did think it a bit unusual but don't feel so familiar with the newer series to think it totally out of character. Makes me wonder if there's some intent behind coloring the Doctor a bit darker.



So wiki says we only have three more episodes left before the Christmas special. Is this really almost over for a couple months???
Edited by bilki, Sep 9 2012, 09:48 PM.
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KMInfinity
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ICargirl from TWoP
 

...There were a lot of things I loved about this
Yes!


Quote:
 
In the end, however, I DO feel betrayed,
I did, a bit, because you are right. The Doctor takes horrific chances, makes difficult choices, and his standard (usually) has been 'the greatest good for the greatest number.' So, his act of genocide with the Daleks and Gallifrey is a defining moment for the character. And to erase that is a big deal.


Quote:
 
...But the fact that the Doctor, for all his heroism, and wit, and compassion, is also the type of man that could indeed kill his entire race when the universe depended on it was so essential to the series that backtracking on that is a problem for me. I'm thinking specifically right now of Nine telling Jackie in one of the earlier episodes that he makes impossible choices because he's the only one who can - he doesn't get the luxury of moral certitude. This comes up again in Fires of Pompeii, when Donna is furious at the Doctor for not only allowing Pompeii to happen, but actually causing it, but then realizes that he really doesn't have a choice, and even does it with him (which is one of my favorite Donna moments).
Very good examples. Donna is my favorite companion, and imo she was always trying to counteract that terrible, inexorable quality of the Doctor, where he could indeed sacrifice the one for the many... (to paraphraseSpock) But she comes to understand his moral compass.


Quote:
 
More than that, I can't buy the show's attempt to present this as a legitimate moral issue when the resolution basically comes down to "it was magic." The question of whether it is ever right to do something horrible to for the chance of stopping something even more horrible is a real and difficult one. To decide that because, based on the often arbitrary rules of your sci-fi universe, it was possible on this one occasion to avoid the issue by pulling a fantastic solution out of thin air, we should take it as a general moral principle that anyone who makes a difficult choice in the field of battle is to be unequivocally condemned is a gross simplification.
Dr. Who is full of handwaving and deus ex machina moments, and they annoy me too. (see below) I happen to like the idea of having Gallifrey back on the table, so this timey-wimey magical cuppa-soup solution was okay, because it gets the audience something really good, and something that many pre-reboot fans wanted and disliked about nu-who. It Gets gallifrey back. But I disagree with one point. I don't condemn The Doctor for making the choice to destroy Gallifrey (and the 2.47 whatever children) with the Daleks, and I don't think everyone did. Many did, both fans and in-show characters, because they don't understand his code. And for The Doctor, I think it's not a moral judgment based on universal truth, it's a self-judgment that shows even when a person makes the right decision for the 'good of the many' there is a cost. Understanding that cost, feeling pain because of that cost, is what keeps you 'human' and kept The Doctor from becoming a monster, the thing many feared about him.


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So yeah. I actually liked the episode, but as entertainment, not as great storytelling, which is kind of par for the course with me and Doctor Who over the past few years.
I have been lambasted for expecting more than 'mere' entertainment from Dr. Who, so I understand this.


For me, the story was strong enough that it the characters of 9-10-11 are intact. And the most important story point, imo, is that The Doctors would have made that terrible choice again, if no other option had presented itself. Hurt War Doctor (okay I like that instead of 8.5 - and the actor's name fits!) gives some very good reasons why he will push the red button before Eleven comes up with the alternate plan. So, they still ARE the people they were before, but Eleven has had TIME to think and think and plan and subconsciously incubate a new scenario, and now the chance to execute it.

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Dax
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Changed thread title... instead of saying 'All seasons', I almost put 'Doctors 9-on', because that would be funny...
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blosslover
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I was thinking 21st Century Who...

I was able to get the special Behind the Lens off of Vimeo, someone took pity on people outside the UK. It is a 13 minute behind the scenes video that reminded me of the Doctor Who Confidential series. What I've seen of that show was so great.
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KMInfinity
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Dax
Nov 24 2013, 01:54 PM
Changed thread title... instead of saying 'All seasons', I almost put 'Doctors 9-on', because that would be funny...
hahaha! Thanks dax.

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blosslover
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That would have been...

Anyway, so thoughts would be cool.

I liked certain things, some made me pause...and others made we want more.

Reading stuff about the con in the UK. Have you seen anything complete?
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bilki
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I'll have to check out the new Doctor when he starts. You know, just to see. I feel like I'm burnt out on Moffat and his schtick, so I doubt I'll stick around for the full season when it airs next Fall.


OK, I see he was on the 50th Anniversary Special. I was thinking he was going to "debut" on the Christmas Special.
Edited by bilki, Nov 26 2013, 12:19 AM.
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blosslover
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His eyes were on the 50th special. What about Moffat don't you like. I'll be honest, I'm an RTD fan and in some circles that makes me bad because his stuff was dramatic and angsty. Sorry, I prefer an adult show that kids can watch, to a kid show that adults can watch. I think the character development with Moffat in some ways SUCKED like how Amy/Rory found out their friend Mels was actually their daughter. That was like 3 seconds..really..

Regardless of the 50th special bilki if you have a chance you need to watch the Five(ish) doctors special if possible. This video was beyond hilarious and Moffat is the bad guy.
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KMInfinity
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Big agree Bloss. I'm not a Moff fan much. He even messed up his own Weeping Angels - started with a really scary, simple monster then made them too complicated. He's a better writer when he's under someone else's control. I don't like him as the showrunner/producer. I loved Empty Child/The Doctor Dances BECAUSE it was unusual that "...Just this once, everybody lives..."

Now, everybody lives all the time.

I prefer angsty RTD too, in all his glorious melodrama...

Edited by KMInfinity, Nov 26 2013, 08:56 PM.
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Dax
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I have no idea how I'll prefer my Doctor Who (I've never gotten into it, but I'll get assimilated one of these days...), but I like Moffat and Mark Gatiss' Sherlock very much.
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KMInfinity
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Gatiss is great. His biopic with Bradley as the First Doctor, Hartnell, was wonderful.

It's been a great weekends to be a Whovian.... : D
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blosslover
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Exactly I wept watching the "Everybody lives" scene because that is so rare. It was a double whammy emotionally thinking about how so many people were lost during WWII in London for reasons that had nothing to do with the episode.

Blink was genius even if Martha and the Doctor were barely in it. They went back to the well too many times with the concept as I didn't understand why 11 didn't copy what was done in the Blink to defeat them.

Dax, I think since Moff doesn't see Sherlock as a kids show and he can't play with timey wimey stuff it is more sane. (The part where 11 uses that term, and 10 lies about where he got it from to the War doctor was funny.) I agree with KMI about Gatiss.

Another thing I wonder, I read somewhere that they said that Matt Smith's Doctor was written/created to be more US accessible. Do you think his Doctor is more appealing to US viewers or is it just because Who is more available in the US than it used ot be...

ETA: Just read this...If true I hope it helps. Capaldi being a DW freak for most of his life may make things better. "So, I was at the 50th in London Excel yesterday and I thought you might find this interesting. During the Eleventh Hour panel when talking about Capaldi, Matt mentioned that the new Doctor knows as much about DW as Moffat (sure you disagree with that statement). Moffat replied by saying that him and Capaldi have already argued over scripts. I've a feeling next season will have a lot less continuity errors and plot holes."
Edited by blosslover, Nov 26 2013, 10:55 PM.
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bilki
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blosslover
Nov 26 2013, 01:04 AM
What about Moffat don't you like.
His stories are too often convoluted or sappy. I'm still mad about what he allowed to happen with the Cybermen back in Closing Time. I didn't care for most of the episodes that were the last run of Amy and Rory. It's just not the Doctor I remember. I grew up watching Tom Baker's Doctor, and I'm pretty sure there weren't any sappy endings.

I have enjoyed some of his stuff, though. I really liked Amy and Rory. The Silence is kinda cool. River Song was fun for a bit. Asylum of the Daleks was a good story for the Daleks, I thought.

I've only seen a handful of RTD-helmed episodes but I probably like him better. I loooooove Midnight!
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blosslover
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Bilki too bad you haven't seen more of RTD stuff as I'd love to discuss it with you. It isn't like classic Who in a lot of ways (not that I know much about the classic stuff.) In a video I watched about series 1, RTD mentioned how he intentionally tried to make the revival Doctor Who into a show that women would also want to watch. Some fans say that goes against what Doctor Who is, which I find kind of sexist. Really, so girls and women shouldn't watch..and it should go back to the days where the female companion is crying/screaming and not doing anything. :(

While I thought Stormaggedon (aka Alfie) was adorable, the episode was ridiculous. Right, someone lives and isn't made a cyberman because of a child. That makes no sense...if that happened in a parallel universe it would have been easier to accept.

I really liked Amy and Rory too, though I felt they were underwritten...things like how they remember things that were undone and such...

Each of RTD's seasons had a different tone...while I think Moff's show was more consistent in that way and it wasn't just because Moff only had Matt Smith as the Doctor. KMI does that make sense? I could write about that, but no time...

Bilki have you seen School Reunion? That's the episode from RTD where Sarah Jane came back into the story as a guest star and she has a lot to do. It is one of my personal favorites. Midnight I thought was interesting from an acting POV and the idea that the Doctor was the one possessed. What I didn't know while watching was one of the guest performers in the episodes was Patrick Troughton's son. ;)

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bilki
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Haven't seen School Reunion but I loved Sarah Jane Smith, even though she was probably one of the crying/screaming companions. She was the first companion in Tom Baker's time as the Doctor. As a kid, I was a little heartbroken when the Doctor left her behind. I liked Leela (his next companion) but wished and hoped for Sarah Jane's return. I've seen Journey's End and thought it was so cool to have Sarah Jane and Davros reunited.

I'd agree that Amy and Rory were underwritten. I can't remember what it was but there was something that always bothered me in regards to their relationship with River Song.
Edited by bilki, Nov 28 2013, 10:32 PM.
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KMInfinity
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Bloss
 
Dax, I think since Moff doesn't see Sherlock as a kids show and he can't play with timey wimey stuff it is more sane. (The part where 11 uses that term, and 10 lies about where he got it from to the War doctor was funny.) I agree with KMI about Gatiss.
LOL----http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vY_Ry8J_jdw

I don't mind a judicious amount of timey wimey servicing the plot, but if hasto be written well or it's too obviously a writer's cheat.

Bloss
 
Another thing I wonder, I read somewhere that they said that Matt Smith's Doctor was written/created to be more US accessible. Do you think his Doctor is more appealing to US viewers or is it just because Who is more available in the US than it used ot be...

ETA: Just read this...If true I hope it helps. Capaldi being a DW freak for most of his life may make things better. "So, I was at the 50th in London Excel yesterday and I thought you might find this interesting. During the Eleventh Hour panel when talking about Capaldi, Matt mentioned that the new Doctor knows as much about DW as Moffat (sure you disagree with that statement). Moffat replied by saying that him and Capaldi have already argued over scripts. I've a feeling next season will have a lot less continuity errors and plot holes."
The various arguments from various Whovian factions make the GL subfanbases look sane and rather unified. :eek: With that caveat, I'd say that a lot of old school fans enjoy Moffat's version of Dr. Who because they claim he is more old school, which for many means more child centered. Moffat seems to agree because in a recent interview he said he writes best what he is living, and so right now is best at writing what it means to be a father. So he sees everything through the lens of what his preteen sons will think of, and also admits he consults with them on various plots and monsters and stuff. (How this relates to his Sherlock stuff I don't know. Someday I'll catch p on that, just to see.)

I'm a little worried about Capaldi because everyone is just so gaga over him and i don't know him at all...But if he's arguing with Moff that's good because I think Moffat is a great writer, but maybe one who works best with a partner, and/or a counterbalance that brings out his best.

Bilki
 
His stories are too often convoluted or sappy. I'm still mad about what he allowed to happen with the Cybermen back in Closing Time. I didn't care for most of the episodes that were the last run of Amy and Rory. It's just not the Doctor I remember. I grew up watching Tom Baker's Doctor, and I'm pretty sure there weren't any sappy endings.
And you would find yourself in a weird subgroup if you showed up on the Gallifrey Base website http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gallifrey_Base (one of the biggest Brit Who fan sites) because Baker's Doctor included lots of horror elements and some think he was 'closest' in mind to RTD's view of The Doctor. But others disagree and remember more of the 4th Doctor's humor and antics. So one camp argues Baker is more of an 'adult' Doctor Who, as is RTD's Nine and Ten, whereas a bunch of others argue the exact opposite. lol. Interesting that the writers and producers for Baker's Doctor, at one point, were told to make the show more 'kid-friendly' as was Moffat after RTD supposedly.


Bloss
 
I really liked Amy and Rory too, though I felt they were underwritten...things like how they remember things that were undone and such...

Each of RTD's seasons had a different tone...while I think Moff's show was more consistent in that way and it wasn't just because Moff only had Matt Smith as the Doctor. KMI does that make sense? I could write about that, but no time...
I LIKED that each season under RTD was a bit different in focus, in style, in companion. Moff was consistent, but imo in ways that weren't always good. We were discussing this on TWoP and one of the comments was that he always rushed the character development to push the action forward. I think that's why Amy and Rory felt underwritten. Imo, the whole of Moffat is underwritten because it sacrifices character to plot. For example, is anyone really satisfied with the way River, Rory, and Amy played out as a family. There was a lot of richness that could have developed, and never was. I could think of a dozen examples of beats that were missed, character moments that were ignored or brushed aside in what i saw was a manic rush to the next BIG PLOT DEVELOPMENT.

ETA
Loved School Reunion (Not Spike's intro in School Hard :P ) because of Tony Head....
Edited by KMInfinity, Nov 29 2013, 03:12 PM.
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blosslover
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Bilki, this may be revisionist, but when people talk about Sarah Jane today, she seems to be the precursor to the stronger female companions (not assistants) that appear on 21st Century Who. Part of the issue people supposedly had about the show in the 80s was how the female characters regressed and Sarah Jane/Romana were stronger in earlier episodes. School Reunion does touch upon how the Doctor left her…and all of that good stuff. Plus like KMI mentioned Tony Head. Before the gang figures out what is going on children die, and during the story everyone has to RUN away from the villains. I can get you a link to an online vid from some website outside North America if you want…

I agree about the writer's cheat. The problem is if a cheat is used too many times it gets ridiculous.

KMI not at all surprised by the various subgroups within the Doctor Who fandom. While I've posted a tad on TWOP, I doubt I'd survive on a site like Gallifrey Base. :D Interesting how people see it both ways. (As I've mentioned before since I only started watching in the summer and just because of seeing two episodes of Broadchurch I'd be an easy target. They would think I was only there for the "pretty" or some such…well I only do that if the episode is bad and that's all there is to it…"embrace the pretty if the show/episode is ##$itty.) So what is your opinion KMI do you think about the argument re: Baker's time at Who.

Capaldi being a Whovian himself is part of why he gets so much love. Also within the UK he has an established fan base. (Hopefully since he and Craig Ferguson are real friends they were in a band together years ago and did drugs together…there will be a whacked interview.) I also believe part of it is because he is older, so some fans are happy there will be less of the fangirl stuff. Matt Smith seems to get a bit of that, but the David Tennant fans seem to be legendary in that regard. Someone posted the opening how to use 3D video from their local movie theater of "The Day of the Doctor" showing and well people just started to cheer seeing Ten on screen. Unfortunately due to that, I couldn't hear what he was saying, which was frustrating… I can sort of understand why this would drive some Classic fans insane.

Yes I would have loved to see River, Rory and Amy act like a family even if River looked older she was younger than Rory and Amy. I'm a character fan over a plot fan, have been for years. Complained about that for years with GL, so I agree.
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KMInfinity
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I haven't seen much of the old-Who. Just an episode here and there, or a full 'episode' of one particular title (It drives me crazy how one 'EPISODE' in old-Who is several half hour episodes, sometimes as many as eight or ten... I think they call it a 'serial' and the season is a series...

I do have some old Who DVDs I've been collecting, and haven't watched yet, because I've gotten Mark to watch and we are midway thru Tennant's second series... The only Baker I've seen is the one that followed his 2013 "Dr. Who Revisited" outing back in April, "The Pyramids of Mars" which I liked, but reminded me too much of Stargate which wasn't fair (of me). The story is considered one of Baker's best, so I will be interested to see what I think about how it fits in with the general show, and Baker's overall work.

I also have put Old-Who on the back burner because my next big thing this summer will be to begin Dark Shadows from Episode One. Mark got me the complete series last year for my birthday and I've only watched a couple episodes. The first six months or so, until Barnabas Collins shows up, is most a gothic romance about the governess, stolen pretty much from the lesser imitators of the Brontes, but I am determined to watch those early episodes anyway. :P

Looking up the episode reminded me that RTD had to rename UNIT because the UN didn't want to be associated with Who any more. So it became the UNified Intelligence Taskforce...
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The full Dark Shadows set... cool.

I have a couple of friends that bought the set-by-set releases, and (they don't watch a lot of current tv) have gone through the series TWICE, which is... wow. That's a lot.

I watched it for a few months, a daily syndicated run here... fun, but I don't remember a lot of it now...
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KMInfinity
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I think it's 1200 plus episodes, but only 22 minutes each. And just now googling...Barnabas doesn't show up until episode 211. Crap.

So, 449 hours.

4 hours a week = more than 2 years. So I'm NOT finishing this in the summer. lol
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blosslover
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Just wanted to share this from TUMBLR... I think it well explains the issues with Moff. Basically it is a genre clash...

Here is the beginning of the commentary:

I’ve been hemming and hawing about adding this comment to it, because it’s only half relevant. So here’s my half solution…

I feel like it’s because Moffat started his career writing sitcoms.

That’s not intended as an insult or an attack. Writing sitcoms is hard. Turning out something like Fawlty Towers or Dad’s Army… whoa. I couldn’t do it.

But it does require a rather different skillset to sci-fi drama, doesn’t it?

http://charamei.tumblr.com/post/69161417682/theres-a-post-going-around-that-begins-one-of
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I don't know enough about Moffat's work (and NOTHING of his Dr. Who work, other than what I've read ABOUT, which is not the same as experiencing it), but I wouldn't say that you could point to every writer that started out in (another genre) and then went to another, and keep a solid classification bias going...

Matthew Weiner started out on Becker. So he's a sitcom writer...

Early credits of Charlie Kaufman are the Chris Elliot sitcom Get A Life, forgotten sitcom Ned & Stacey, and sketch shows The Edge and The Dana Carvey Show... not great predictors of what was to come (other than that Get A Life was also delightfully 'weird' and funny)...

Whedon on Roseanne... Okay, and Joss is 'funny', but not a 'sitcom writer'... but he WAS, so...

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blosslover
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I get what you mean, but between this and the other article I think it hits a lot of my issues. For me it isn't that he wrote for sitcoms, just that sometimes he relies too much on things like the reset button, which is quite common in that genre. (And yes I remember Ned & Stacey, and Get a Life was great).

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KMInfinity
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YES! Good insights in that article, Bloss. I think the "kick the plot into gear' sitcom trope is very much a Moff thing, and the idea of having the 'status quo' as the end result. Both of which I dislike heartily in DW. I agree it's not that a sitcom writer can't stretch to do other things or are trapped by sitcom writing patterns, but that MOFF is. the zygon plot is an EXCELLENT example because it is one of the very few missteps in the brilliant 50th anniversary show.
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bilki
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Due to the Doctor Who marathon, I just got to watch The Day of the Doctor. Mixed feelings. As one who has occasionally wished Gallifrey was still in the picture, I must admit that I like the potential that has been opened up here. But, I kinda hate that he went back and re-wrote one of the defining moments in the Doctor's history. A very Moffat move, though, with so much of what he writes being happy ending-ish.

Now the comment about Zygon plot disappearing at the link you provided above, BL, makes sense.

Waiting for the Christmas special to start now.....
Edited by bilki, Dec 25 2013, 08:16 PM.
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