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I am – Hercules!! BBC America doesn't launch the new "Doctor Who" season till next Saturday, but the second episode of the post-Davies era just hit the real BBC over in the United Kingdom. What say the Britons? “Doctor Dan” calls it “very decent”:
DOCTOR WHO 5.2 – "The Beast Below" WRITER: Steven Moffat DIRECTOR: Andrew Gunn GUEST CAST: Sophie Okonedo, Terrence Hardiman, Alfie Field, Christopher Good, David Ajala, Jonathan Battersby, Hannah Sharp & Catrin Richards [SPOILERS] Quite possibly Steven Moffat's worst episode, but his quality level is so high that "The Beast Below" still resulted in being a very decent episode of Doctor Who; albeit one that felt like a familiar hybrid of "The Long Game" and something Terry Pratchett would come up with. This week, The Doctor (Matt Smith) and Amy (Karen Gillan) arrived aboard the Starship UK, a giant spacecraft that's become the post-apocalyptic vehicle for the entire British nation after the planet suffered a catastrophic solar flare. The Doctor immediately sense a police state, becoming suspicious of gargoyle-like "Smilers" that sit inside booths keeping an eye on the population, while Amy discovers a strange tentacle inside a cordoned off area and a peculiar "voting booth" where the horrific secret behind Starship UK is made known to its citizens every five years, before giving you a choice to "protest" (and risk the wrath of the Smilers, it transpires) or "forget" and have the burden of knowledge erased from your memory. "The Beast Below" was a mixed success, helped by the simple fact we have two new lead characters, so half the entertainment was just seeing The Doctor and Amy's rapport together. The Doctor still has the manic energy of his previous incarnation, but it's tempered by a certain scatterbrained tinge that means The Doctor's still undoubted a genius, but it's not a foregone conclusion he'll manage to find the answers and save the day in the nick of time. In fact, this episode's biggest breath of fresh air was in having his companion work everything out before he did; something I can't remember happening so unequivocally since the show returned in 2005. Amy certainly seems to be a more interesting companion, partly because it would be tiresome to have her ask so many questions that sat on the lips of Rose, Martha and Donna at this stage in the show's comeback. Here she learns that The Doctor's not human and he's the last of his kind, and that knowledge was imparted in a way that wasn't tedious for the audience watching at home. Above all, Amy's mix of realism, independence, determination and belief in her own abilities means she's less of a hanger-on than you'd expect at this stage. It's only episode 2 and she's the one outfoxing The Doctor! Where the episode fell down was the overall direction of the story, and how quite a few of the "twists" weren't hard to predict, although with the show aimed at children I'm sure there were plenty of confused faces. Or kids tugging at their parent's arms to ask what "abdicate" means, at the very least. But despite all that, it was still an engaging mix of action and humour -– with the disquieting "Smilers" (the show loves monsters with fixed expressions), a fun guest performance from Sophie Okonedo as the common-as-muck royal "Liz Ten", a trip inside a monster's tongue, some quips about democracy for adults, and the current joy of seeing how Matt Smith's approaches the material. The Good Matt Smith and Karen Gillan. Already a great double-act and I like their dynamic together. Plus, it's just great fun to see Matt Smith put his own spin on The Doctor -– making him a bit angrier ("you don't ever decide what I need to know!") and befuddled. But it's arguably Amy Pond who's making the biggest impression right now, saving the day in her nightie! The Smilers. They weren't really scary, just effectively creepy. Sophie Okonedo. A thin character, overall, but she played it as well as could be expected. The Bad A storyline that felt a little well-worn and the mystery predictable. In fact, this felt like a typical piece of Russell T. Davies moralizing at times, but Moffat's a surer hand at least. The unnecessary decision to have a little girl called Mandy accompany The Doctor, Amy and Liz Ten, for no apparent reason. The Geeky Magpie Electricals make a reappearance, having first appeared in series 3's "The Idiot's Lantern". Nobody dies in this episode, which is something of a rarity in Doctor Who, although Steven Moffat's previous two-parter "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances" also had no on-screen deaths. Moffatism: Amy getting a message from herself in the future, which reminded me of "Blink". This is director Andrew Gunn's debut on the series. Liz Ten references past Queens The Doctor has met: Queen Victoria ("Tooth & Claw") and Elizabeth I ("The Chase", "Silver Nemesis", "The Shakespeare Code"). She also alludes to the fact The Doctor took Elizabeth I's virginity! This episode featured a denouement that sets up the next episode, which I don't believe has been done outside of the series finale's that tease the Christmas special at the end of the year.
“Gabba UK” says he “loved it all with one caveat”:
Hi Herc, Well, after the excitement of last week, the relief that Matt Smith is the real deal and the usual problems of a post-regeneration story, we come to the Grand Moff's difficult second album. The Beast Below. This is traditionally the episode where a new actor as the Doctor firmly plants his flag on how he is going to build on the character. From this evidence Smith is basing his take on Troughton with a lot of Pertwee, some Baker and a dash of Davidson. All good so far, basically The Doctor in his televisual prime. "What are going to do?" "What I always do, stay out of trouble........ badly" So we open with typical Doctor Who. A seemingly normal scene with a creepy twist. Pupils lining up to see how they did in a test except the teacher is a weird dummy in a cubical. Think Zoltar from BIg but no as cuddly. And a fiery pit for Timmy, who got a zero. Bit harsh perhaps but those league tables are what matters I guess. After the new credit sequence, which I like by the way, Amy is floating in space. Not a good position to be in usually but she is being held on to by her ankle by the good doctor from the open door of the TARDIS. Here, they find Starship UK. The whole county, now on a massive ship floating through the stars. A bit of digging around, showing off very well the logical and deductive way the mind of the Doctor works, brings the discovery that Starship UK is a police state. One that is tacitly approved of by the population. Children are crying with adults not doing anything about it. This is very galling for the Doctor and shows previous experience of parenting. And the ship is moving in space but with no obvious source of power, another mystery to solve. I've learned from my writing these reviews for Who is that I don't actually like to give much of the plot away. I used to but I've found that the talkbacks on Who very active and plot-lines are very quickly discussed. What I prefer to talk about are my general impressions of the story. And the impression continues to be good. Matt Smith has stepped into the role like he was born to it. I've already forgotten David Tennent and are more interested in this version of the Doctor. What he thinks, what he does and how he goes about it. He has an aged quality to his portrayal that make you believe that this really is a 900 year old man in the body of a 26 year old. Smith is adding layers to this Who with hints and implications to his past far more effectively that Tennent managed. This is in no way a slur on David Tennet but Smith is being better served by the quality in the writing. Steven Moffett has written these first two episodes and he's outdone himself. The stories haven't been the most original but they've been perfect vehicles to introduce us to his take on Who. Dark fairy-tails is how he has put it in the companion series Doctor Who Confidential on BBC Three. I've praised Smith heavily, it's nothing compared Karen Gillian. Amy Pond has the very real potential to be the best companion for the Timelord ever. She is going to be huge. Gillian has a quality that is very natural, she acts and sounds like anyone would caught up in an adventure such as this but not as heavy handed as Billy Piper and is light years beyond Catherine Tate, who I hated before Donna Noble, hated during and still have to change channels now whenever she is on. I'm actually on the same side as those in the talkbacks that think she has something to do with River Song. My money is on Mother/Daughter but just Who is the father? The best bits? Pretty much all of it frankly. I loved it all with one caveat. It was at times a bit manic and hard to keep up with but the denouement was very satisfying and hinted at a growing and deeper relationship between Amy and The Doctor than that has been the case with previous companions. I also loved the fact that the space faring Police Telephone Box actually has a phone that rings with the greatest British Prime Minister on the other end of the call. Next Week. Spitfires in space. And Dalek's in British Army colours. Cool!
“tomdolan04” says he “enjoyed it a lot”:
Hey, semi-regular reader, North Wales (we’d insist on our own separate ship too in event of the destruction of the Earth) in the UK. Thought I’d chip in my brief thoughts on episode 2 of Matt Smiths Doctor. I’m not into spelling the episode out but If you’re here reading this I don’t buy the whole ‘no spoilers’ deal so if you don’t want to see the main points look away now. With the setup of last week established, does Episode 2 get on down to business? Plot: The Doctor and Amy travel to a floating spaceship-country that resembles the United Kingdom in the far future. On the surface everything is fine, but underneath lies a sinister underbelly of something not quite right. On the surface I felt a little similarity between this series’ episodes one and two of both Ecclestons and Tenants initial series’, where they contrast their first episode finding their feet on present day Earth and their second taking their companions to the far future-yet Earth related locales where everything on the surface is fine but underne…nevermind. After looking into a sad child’s tears Amy goes and finds a discovery about the nature of the Spaceship and what powers it’s flight (I can see the Talkback now covered in ‘OMG teh Discworld rip-offs but really guys, try harder). Ultimately the future-humans are portrayed as the self-serving sods they have been depicted like as in the last four years of Who, and are abusing an alien creature that really just wants to help. The public are given the ‘truth’ every five years (Oh Mr Moffat you tease, anyone would think there’s a General Election here in less than a month) and are presented with two options – to protest and effective destroy the way the country is lead to believe it needs to survive, or to forget the truth and live in ignorance. Parables to current affairs aren’t new to Who, but it’s handled quite effectively and didn’t beat you over the head with a Queer As Folk DVD boxset (or indeed a red or blue pill) To wheel the plot along the Doctor and Amy get stuck in a monsters mouth (more Empire Strikes Back than Moby Dick) and they have help from a lady called Liz 10 – a coloured descendant (PC reference contractually fulfilled for the week) of the Royal Family. I liked the character but felt the references to the Doctors alleged relationship with the old Queen quite forced and not necessary. Liz 10 could have existed just as the ruler of the country, the monarchy tie-in was not needed. To many extents structurally this Episode extends the belief that Moffat does indeed not want to rock the boat too much from RTD’s tenure as a series. Nor should he, no matter what the detractors say (and I’m not the greatest of RTD fans). However whilst tonally and in terms of the ‘beats’ it is the not that different, there were nuances from the actors and story that give me great hope for a fairly solid series throughout (whereas all four RTD’s series were about 50% good/great and the other 50% wondering what the hell I was doing wasting my Saturday night). THE GOOD: Matt Smith, you belter. Throughout the episode he was channelling a doped up Giraffe and (again this may be me) some of his mannerisms were quite Sylvester Mccoy (there was definitely a look near the start where he said something about looking for a fish that made me think that). His performance handled the comedy/serious investigation balance with aplomb and in particular the angst of his difficult ‘choice’ at the end was handled with far more subtlety than I imagine Tennant’s characterisation would have (and I liked Tennant a lot). Matt and Amy’s chemistry is something too, and Karen Gillan really is a gorgeous girl who gives a performance that does her proud. Maybe this was helped by the writing, which allowed some in-jokes and again didn’t force things. I thought the Doctors deductive reasoning in explaining to Amy why something was amiss when they first landed was fantastic (“look – no dust or dirt on it, nor any footprints”) as I remember when I was young I loved little bits like that which made the world seem more….lived in? It adds detail to the surrounding by explaining little quirks which in turn give the environment a much more realistic edge than any amount of CGI landscapes could. THE NOT SO GOOD: Quibbles really. The music guys really need to lay off the crack in terms of overpowering scenes with walls of sound but it isn’t as guilty of this as last week. The CGI of the spaceship and creature were good, but certainly internal shots were on-par with Prisoner Zero in the room with Amy last week (i.e. not so great). The resolution was a bit weak but the performances of the two leads really made up for it. Overall I enjoyed it a lot. The main thing here is that now Moffat is running the show he has responsibilities to balance the whole thing out – something perpetual Russell T Davies detractors tend to skim over. Doctor Who should always try to inspire and hit children’s imaginations first, adults second. I think we’re in safe hands. Now where’s my voting booth. The way we are in the UK with the three main political parties, I dearly wish we collectively hit the protest button. Seriously – their attempts at political debate in the last week makes the dialogue in the crappy ‘Love and Monsters’ episode of Who look like fecking William Shakespeare. Tomdolan04 signing off till next weeks Dalek invasion. Lets hope they don’t get shafted like the 20’s New York one.
“Kelvington” says he “didn’t hate it”:
Last week we got a full on intro to the new Doctor and his new companion and the updated TARDIS. This week starts off a tad darker with a sad child and his apparent death, which in the end turns out not be a death so much as it is an enrollment to a life of servitude. Eerie stuff for a pre-title sequence, but the kind of stuff you would hope for in this new incarnation of “Doctor Who”. I can honestly say, I’m not sure how I feel about this episode. There was a very clever concept here, a huge space ship filled with all of the UK through space, except for Scotland they have their own ship, and an underlying mystery about it. One that could have been solved in two seconds had the TARDIS appeared below the ship instead of high above it. Which brings me to my only real peeve of the episode. Now a few weeks ago when I first started to see images of Amy floating above the TARDIS in space with the Doctor holding her by her foot, in some sort of homage to Superman holding Lois Lane while flying in the air, I thought. Well, this is just a cute image that they use to draw in kids and stuff. There’s no way they would actually make it part of a story. Wow, I couldn’t have been more wrong. I’m not sure I like the new physics of the TARDIS where people can float above the TARDIS and still breath and not float away to their deaths. You remember the time the Doctor put the woman on the edge of an event horizon. She didn’t seem to be having nearly the fun of Amy Pond did. Now one of the reasons I can’t say if I like this episode or not was the fact that they portrayed it as a mystery when really it was a historical episode, just placed in the future. Where we meet a future queen, who has had a very long reign. Plus we get to see the Doctor truly perplexed as to how to solve the mystery in the most human way. The Doctor is sort of all over the map here. Happy to see a future UK, sad to see Amy made a decision to forget something awful, and at times truly lost. The script also seemed to either try and do too much, a living ship, creatures/people with turning drama masks for heads, a new alien, is it good, is it bad. Or too little, forgetting or skipping key plot points. Who were the men or devices who can turn their heads around to show their displeasure? Why did they think abdicating the thrown would kill everyone? Why did we stop talking about the turning head guys? Why were they chasing the Queen? What would they have done if they caught her? It all seemed a bit of mashup. In the end, I’m not sure where in the filming of the series this episode was shot, or why it was used as the second episode. The characters and their development bounced around a lot like a rubber ball in a small box. Maybe I’m just getting too old to enjoy Doctor Who. Also the ending where the past can call you on your phone and bring you home to the UK… well, it’s been done. But I can honestly say, I just don’t know if I liked this one. I didn’t hate it. I know I didn’t love it. But I’ve come to expect more from “Doctor Who” than just not hating it. Just my 2¢
“Jannerman” says it “wasn't as good as last weeks”:
A new week a new Who, so here we go again with another - hopefully fairly spoiler-light review. Ok, last week I was all like, fucking wow, this week it was a little like - errr, did I miss an episode since last week? The story is set 1300 or so years in the future (well, Amy Ponds future anyway) on the Starship UK, the idea being that the sun started to cause Earth to be too hot for humans to survive on so all of the countries built spaceships and took to the stars, well, all that is, apart from us brits, who had to hitch a lift. You'll find out during the episode how that works into the story. (I will refrain from bitching about our proud manufacturing history in the UK , etc, etc!) I was excited to see this dystopian vision of a future UK based on a spaceship but old tech enough to still have streets and stop signs, bicycles etc. Kind of reminded me of a cross between Bladerunner and Neil Gaimans excellent Neverwhere universes, and the creepy "smileys" certainly added a tangible threat, epically in the second half when they unveiled their surprise. Although the story felt a little slow, and even a little light in the first half there were several moments of foreshadow that tied the episode together, and did nothing for me but prove how the current writing team are certainly clever in what they do, you wonder if they're actually enjoying their work so much that it's showing through or perhaps the whole series is just going to be this damn good. Yes, this weeks episode wasn't as good as last weeks, yes it did feel like character-wise things had moved on significantly since last week - if you remember that the Doctor and Amy "met" the previous day their relationship has evolved a lot in a short space of time, but all in all the episode did a lot to develop the characters and their personalities whilst at the same time providing us a decent storyline. Matt Smith is as good as I'd hoped he was going to be, if he didn't own the part after last weeks episode the depth of feeling his Doctor gave us this week has certainly underlined his unique take on the character, you truly feel that the excellent writing paired with the equally good actors and acting will keep the show interesting. Without giving too much away there is a definite nod to Discworld at the end, unsure if that's intentional or accidental, but the story leading up to it actually made me feel quite emotional, of course I could just be being a bit of a soppy git but it's because I'm digging the aforementioned acting/story. So in summary a strong episode, not better than last week, but good enough to further the series/character development nicely but then they did go and do it again with another blistering "on next weeks" preview, Winston Churchill and Daleks? Already looking forward to next week with great interest.
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Readers Talkback
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  • April 10, 2010, 4:31 p.m. CST

    When is the BBC America US premier?

    by fiester

    I don't see why they can't run here simultaneously as they do in the UK. It's just dumb.

  • April 10, 2010, 4:33 p.m. CST

    by deadshot07

    It's next Saturday at 7, I think

  • April 10, 2010, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Trying to find it online

    by ToughGuyRizzo

    Fiester, you can see the 1st Matt Smith on youtube

  • April 10, 2010, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Dr Who?

    by JKrow21


  • April 10, 2010, 4:47 p.m. CST

    WHO's on first.

    by mistergreen

  • April 10, 2010, 4:48 p.m. CST

    Woah, this week's new Dr. Who episode has almost the same...

    by RedEgiraahgnal as the new Scooby Doo* episode that also aired this week?<p> *Yeah, there is again a new Scooby Doo series.

  • April 10, 2010, 4:49 p.m. CST

    BBC America Doctor Who Starts the 17th...

    by Kelvington

    Oh and one more thing (sounding like Columbo) the key being dragged down a piano string sound that was used in the old DT era TARDIS interior, you know the sound, trust me when you hear it, you would know it. That sound is used through the WHOLE DAMN EPISODE! Really guys? REALLY? That pissed me off a bit too. We chuck everything of the old WHO except this one sound which we will play over and over... it's an old ship, it's metal, we get it. Now stop that sound it was annoying when over used in DT era, but here it was terrible. Sorry... Carry on!

  • April 10, 2010, 4:58 p.m. CST

    I'd agree it wasn't as good as last weeks...

    by Gabba-UK

    But it's heartening to hear that my fellow reviewers are all agreeing that Smith and Gillian are really beginning to look like a hell of a team to have on board the TARDIS. Smith's take on Who is really refreshing. Like the man himself last week said, "I'm definitely a mad man with a box!". Also liked the 'crack' appearing again, just wasn't as subtle as the sight of it on the TARDIS' oscilloscope last week but it means we have a game now as to who see's it as what it is first. My moneys on Amy Pond.

  • April 10, 2010, 4:59 p.m. CST

    Connected to THE ARK IN SPACE!

    by ISleptWithKathyBatesAndAllThatIGotWasThisStupidTalkbackName

    Any other fans of the classic series catch the connection, in regards to the solar flares causing them have to flee the planet? I loved that!

  • April 10, 2010, 4:59 p.m. CST

    Why such quick actor turn over?

    by JuanSanchez

  • April 10, 2010, 5:01 p.m. CST



    Early warning signs ........... If RTD had made that we would HATE it. So far the score is 1-1 .... must do better.

  • April 10, 2010, 5:01 p.m. CST

    Is this a reboot?

    by JuanSanchez

  • April 10, 2010, 5:08 p.m. CST

    This didn't work for me

    by offscauta

    Some nice ideas, but too many of them to be dealt with in the time available. The CGI was poor, as was the design of the space whale. The acting from "Liz Ten" was terrible, and the best thing I can say about the directing was that I didn't notice it. Still, the dream of an entire series with no duff episodes was always a long shot. Oh, and if the Space Whale threw up Amy and the Doctor then shouldn't they have been floating in space judging by the final shots of the thing?

  • April 10, 2010, 5:16 p.m. CST

    I've never watched Who before

    by theGoldbergV

    I saw the occasional Christmas special under RTD (the one with Kylie) and it was crap. Actually, almost all the bits of RTD's version I saw were crap. Jokey, over sentimental rubbish that FOR SOME REASON millions of my fellow Blitey's seemed to love. Let us not forget the man wrote a blowjob joke into a kids TV show. Nice one twat. Anyway...anger out of the way, last week I caught the new series and loved it. This episode was very good too. Moffat is a great writer. I watched Press Gang when I was a kid, and loved that too. This guy knows how to write for both adults and children at the same time without alienating either. Fast pace, brilliant performances and a solid story. Oh yeah and the asides towards our upcoming general election were perfectly pitched. Finally some British sci-fi that isn't Being Human that is actually GOOD.

  • April 10, 2010, 5:18 p.m. CST

    For anyone interested

    by Darth_Tarantino

    I'm reviewing each new episode as they air, over at my blog.

  • April 10, 2010, 5:31 p.m. CST

    holy crap

    by palewook

    this worked for me. i really loved this episode. wasn't sure how i felt about the episode until the last 5 minutes when the 3rd act dropped.

  • April 10, 2010, 5:32 p.m. CST

    The Poem Girl

    by shockingmood

    Anyone else notice the similarity between the poem girl in the lift and that old BBC2 test pattern? And the video footage in the voting booth was very Open University.

  • April 10, 2010, 5:35 p.m. CST

    Smith is great. The writing is awful, still.

    by Hint_of_Smegma

    Have to say after seeing this episode, I really like Smith as the Doctor - I really wish the writing would improve however. Who at it's best had writing aimed at everyone - the kids loved it because it was scifi and a bit "grown up" for them, making them hide their head intheir hands at the scary bits. Now it's aimed at kids only, and everyone is losing. I'm glad it's doing well, but it'd be doing even better if the writing was stepped up. Smith could easily rcome one of the best Doctor's incarnations so I'll stick with it, but I really wish they'd aim at an older audience.

  • April 10, 2010, 5:48 p.m. CST

    Ripped off

    by Celtican

    The plot was ripped off from TNG, shame on you Moffat!

  • April 10, 2010, 5:53 p.m. CST

    Recycled TNG EP

    by Carri

    I agree with Celtican. First thing I thought of was ST:TNG. Captured, tortured space creature, been done before.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:08 p.m. CST

    Series Five is off to a good start

    by SpyGuy

    No, I don't really care if "NEXT GEN did it" first because "The Beast Below" was another solid episode for the Matt Smith era. As others have mentioned, Smith and Gillan already have a terrific dynamic and I hope Amelia Jessica Pond isn't limited to the current trend of companions leaving at the season's end. The next episode, "Victory of the Daleks," looks extremely promising, if only to see the Doctor getting along with Winston Churchill like they're old poker buddies.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:14 p.m. CST

    I was very disappointed with one aspect of this episode...

    by ISleptWithKathyBatesAndAllThatIGotWasThisStupidTalkbackName

    Amy's great. She really is. But you don't need to sell her to the audience by cheapening The Doctor. This is her second story with him and she's already out-thinking him! I'm not happy about that.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:27 p.m. CST

    How can anyone say this was not as good as last week!?...

    by LittleManFromAnotherPlace

    It wiped the floor with last week & Smith was MUCH better. He pulled it back much more & instead of acting MANIC all the time we instead had The Doctor - someone like a Professor with a strange other worldly quality about him. He also played him like I was hoping he would as a young man in an older man's body. And if you want unpredictability, how about the companion saving the day instead of The Doctor for a change? Still loving Amy Pond. Excellent. Nothing to complain about.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:33 p.m. CST

    Fuck, you lot are hard to please

    by lead_sharp

    Why can't we just sit back and enjoy a well done bit of story telling for a change?

  • April 10, 2010, 6:33 p.m. CST

    I must admit to a twinge of annoyance

    by Majereuk

    The whole 'every other country built an ark except Britain' thing annoyed me, a bit. Especially given that the Scots apparently managed to flit off on their own. I know it's trendy to get a bit of Brit-bashing in, but I'd rather Who didn't smack me on the head with a shovelful of it. Here's hoping next week doesn't do it again, because it's looking 50/50 from the trails..

  • Another PERFECT Doctor Who episode!!!!!!!!!!! Mr Steven Mofitt, We're not worthy, we're not worthy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • April 10, 2010, 6:53 p.m. CST

    moffats worst episode

    by Candy ass monkey suit

    I wouldnt say this was a perfect ep,far from it. Whilst smith and Gillan were as amazing as last week the ep was really sub Russell T Davies fare and by far moffats worst ep to date. The Mill are also delivering some very average CGI this series. After a lot of good stuff they did last couple of yrs (especially the stunning mars stuff in Waters of mars) they're churning out some of the worst cgi ever to have graced the small screen since who returned..what happened? I liked the end where amy turned things around but the rest left me a bit cold. What happened to the man who wrote Blink and The girl in the fireplace? So Far - ep 1 The eleventh hour 8.5/10 ep 2 the best below 6.5/10

  • It was just under 42 minutes long!!!!!!!!!!!! OH MY GOD!!!!!!! The horror of it all!!!!!!!!!!!! I rest my case. An almost perfect Doctor Who episode, I stand corrected.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:54 p.m. CST

    why the turnover

    by Himbo

    Patrick Troughton once told Peter Davison, "don't do who more than three years. You'll be typecast." <p> Since then, three years has been pretty standard. Especially since Davison and Tennant have a familial relationship. I imagine Davison gave Tennant similar advice. Eccleston apparently said he'd do one year from the go. Maybe Matt Smith will hang around a while and will milk it as his first MAJOR role. Tennant had had decent varied success before Who, so maybe he lost his taste for it.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:58 p.m. CST


    by The Marquis de Side 3

    "Encounter at Farpoint"! A living creature is turned into a space station! But watching the new Doctor in action with his companion was what really made it fun.

  • I give ep 1 The eleventh hour two thumbs up & ep 2 the beast below two thumbs sideways.

  • April 10, 2010, 6:58 p.m. CST


    by The Marquis de Side 3

    "Encounter at Farpoint"! A living creature is turned into a space station! But watching the new Doctor in action with his companion was what really made it fun.

  • April 10, 2010, 7:06 p.m. CST

    the difference between this dr and tennants dr

    by emeraldboy

    is that tennant's dr is obvious. tennants dr who was manic and when backed into a corner came up with a rescue plan and it always worked. I think this series will end with an obvious conclusion. geting amy pond up the aisle for her wedding. when moffat took over he wiped the slate clean.

  • April 10, 2010, 7:08 p.m. CST

    Doctor Dan - What about the Sontaran run into Doc's Daughter?

    by Steve Rogers

    Not being funny but if you're going to say something hasn't been done in a while (in this case the immediate lead into next episode) try not to make it something that happened IN THE LAST SERIES.

  • April 10, 2010, 7:10 p.m. CST

    Candy ass monkey suit, a little irony here.................

    by axcel1

    You called this episode "the best below". Maybe, you did like it?

  • April 10, 2010, 7:12 p.m. CST

    And to all you sad fuckers still bashing RTD...

    by Steve Rogers

    GET THE FUCK OVER IT! Seriously, he is GONE. He's not on the show, you can let it go. Unless you're gonna be so thorough as to say "It was also much better than the shit we got in the JNT and Graham Williams eras". Which you won't. Cos you just luuurve bitching about RTD in talkbacks and are keeping it up even though he has nothing to do with the series anymore. Get over yourselves, you pathetic twats.

  • April 10, 2010, 7:13 p.m. CST

    They need to get out of that shithole they call 'Cardiff'!

    by workshed

    I love Dr Who and Matt Smith is da shit as the good Doc BUT PLEASE - now that RTD is gone move it out of the hands of BBC Wales. They haven't an 'effin clue how to make good sci-fi and it cheapens the entire show imo. I don't think I'm alone in this opinion.

  • April 10, 2010, 7:22 p.m. CST

    Moffet gets tons of slack from me.

    by fiester

    The guy has hardcore writing chops. I don't need to be blown out of the water out of the gate. I look for a slow build and an overarching storyline build. He's the rare creative type who is both understanding and knowledgeable of the source material but also willing to take it to new places. In Moffet we trust. <p> However: I would not mind if they got out of Wales either. I am guessing there's some sort of financial reason for the Wales-centric epsiodes (like Wales is the Canada of the UK, where media gets tons of tax breaks, etc.) but please put Doctor Who back in London proper. <p>Unless The Doctor goes to Portmeirion to rescue Number 6, I would not mind another Wales-centric episode this century.

  • April 10, 2010, 7:23 p.m. CST

    Another great episode

    by kwisatzhaderach


  • April 10, 2010, 7:36 p.m. CST

    The final act choked me up.

    by mistergreen

    yeah, I'll admit it. I cried a little. What's more sappy than kids and space whales?

  • April 10, 2010, 7:57 p.m. CST

    If you didn't like it, well, fair enough, I LOVED IT.

    by V'Shael

    Matt Smith is the Doctor, as far as I'm concerned. Amy being the savior... loved it. Comparing it to Escape from Farpoint... is nuts. Finding the slightest similarity (giant alien used for other purpose) does not constitute "rip off". Tossers.

  • April 10, 2010, 8:10 p.m. CST

    ISleptWithKathyBatesAndAllThatIG otWasThisStupidTalkbackName

    by palewook

    amy is not out thinking the doctor. moffat setup the doctor's blindside earlier in the episode. children. <p> he's so worried about saving the kids, he's ready to do something that is damning but humane to spare the kids. he can't even begin to consider the option of risking the kids. <p> its why after its over, he even says to amy, you risk them all. <p> she was about to see the solution because it was something he could never consider under the circumstances.

  • April 10, 2010, 8:48 p.m. CST

    Too Short!

    by frankenstone

    At 42 minutes, it felt rushed. Didn't this show use to be an hour? (I do remember when it used to be a 30 minute serial, so each story was like 2 or 3 hours long when edited together and shown on our local PBS station.) I guess it's just so good I don't want it to end.

  • April 10, 2010, 9:33 p.m. CST

    no apparent reason??(spoiler)

    by gotilk

    I could have sworn she was the reason Amy figured out that the StarWhale had essentially volunteered to power the ship in order to save the children.. or at least quell their incessant screaming. It was affectionate toward the child, ferchrissake! <br><br> But yes, I agree with Frankenstone. Too short. It felt like it flew by way too fast. Felt like a 30 minute episode to me. To sum up.. I LOVED IT! This new Doctor is not just growing on me like Tennant did.. this doctor HAD me from episode one. The writing is SO much better, even if this episode did feel a little bit (tiny) silly. I feared that this Doctor would not be able to pull off anything close to foreboding or darkness, even anger. But he did pull it off, and well. Now, already, we get a Dalek episode right away next week. <br><br> I'm not one of those who "bash" RTD, not at all. But there's no question that just 2 episodes in, this is MY doctor. Just because this is true doesn't mean RTD's whole run was shit. Hell, I have him to thank for where the show is now. This is just SO much better. <br><br>Me too, Mr Green. I seriously was moved by the last act. Somehow, with this show, I can turn off my cynical nature and just get sucked into it all. We're so lucky to have this series finally. I just hope the season isn't as short as some of the others. I don't want to wait a year after seeing only 8 or 11 episodes. How many are planned for this series (season)?

  • April 10, 2010, 9:34 p.m. CST

    See, See......................................................

    by axcel1

    I'm not the only one who thought it was too short. It's the only thing that kept it from being perfect. Like I said, two thumbs sideways.

  • April 10, 2010, 10:07 p.m. CST

    Starting later than usual next week...

    by gotilk

    just in case anyone was wondering. I think something like 25 minutes later than usual. I was really spoiled by that nice lengthy first episode. This one really, seriously felt too short. I've been googling it, too, and I still have not found out how many episodes there will be in this new series.

  • April 10, 2010, 10:28 p.m. CST

    gotilk, now you are getting me worried.....................

    by axcel1

    I just thought that, except for last year's 5 episode unoffical season (series), it was always 13 episodes plus a Christmas special. And, I have only seen 8 episodes listed on some sites.

  • April 10, 2010, 10:29 p.m. CST

    I actually liked the episode.

    by nrn

    With smart thinking on the companions side and not some out of the box theory. The episode had content and purpose. This new season is turning out to be my favorite already. Can't wait for the Daleks next week.

  • April 10, 2010, 10:34 p.m. CST

    Man..that was disappointing

    by HermesTrismestigus

    It seems like they are trying to do too much with the episodes..this one didn't seem to have a vibe or any just sat there. The space whale should have been one episode...and the genius idea for the smilers should have been one episode. The smilers concept would have been pretty scary if that was all the show was about..but between forget-abdicate..the monster below...the little girl it seemed like all the dramatic weight was spread out butter scraped over too much toast.

  • April 10, 2010, 10:35 p.m. CST

    A solid episode.

    by Rhuragh

    I'd rate it a 6 or 7 out of 10. In earlier RTD years this would have been one of the 50% of the episodes that don't suck (excepting the Tate fourth season which completely fucking sucked). In this season, I have a feeling that this will turn out to be an average episode for the season. <BR><BR>For specifics, I love that Smith played the role a bit more subdued this week. He's coming down off the manic-high Tennant style and becoming a bit more reserved. It gives him the wise quality everyone has been complimenting. Still loving Gillan's work. If she continues like this, she'll quickly become the best companion since the relaunch. As far as the plot goes, I really liked the political commentary. People exercise their franchise every few years and then stop paying attention and take no responsibility for what happens in the interim. And yes, I agree, it felt a bit short. I felt that they should have lengthened out the scene where the Doctor tells Amy that the Time Lords are all dead. A few more intelligent (vs sentimental, like RTD always went) probative questions on Amy's part would have firmed up the grounding for her epiphany in the climax of the episode. <BR><BR>One thing I have noticed though. The dialogue seems to be much denser now. I have trouble with the accent sometimes, so, I tend to have to watch the episode twice to finally pick up everything. If they keep the quality where it is, I don't think I'm going to mind.

  • April 10, 2010, 11:04 p.m. CST

    It's too short for a reason - money

    by Corwin_X2

    The BBC isn't a commercial station that shows adverts. It's funded by a TV tax in the UK - you have to buy a "licence" to watch *any* TV channel. But when the show is sold to stations in other countries, invariably commercial, they have to leave room for those channels to insert adverts. Hence the 42min, plus 18min of ads, equals an "hour-long" show as in the States. So viewers in the UK are taxed to subsidise a show which is then sold for profit everywhere else on the planet. Go figure.

  • April 10, 2010, 11:10 p.m. CST

    People, Series 5 is 13 episodes then a Christmas special

    by SpyGuy

    And considering Episode 12 is reportedly titled "The Pandorica Opens," I think it's a safe bet there will be more than 8 episodes this season.

  • April 10, 2010, 11:31 p.m. CST

    So, once and for all, who was the woman behind Tim Dalton in

    by James_O'Nasty

    the last Tennant episode?

  • April 10, 2010, 11:48 p.m. CST

    the woman behind Dalton was the Doctor's mom

    by FrodoFraggins

    RTD addressed that somewhere but don't have patience to find the source

  • April 11, 2010, 12:05 a.m. CST

    It was ok..

    by dj_bollocks

    ...I think it stands up to better scrutiny 2nd time around. Encounter At Farpoint is an interesting comparison as I had thought star Trek IV - particularly when the word whale was mentioned. A bit of a jumble but some great political allusions in there especially with a UK general election coming up. So yeah a bit run of the mill - but Moff run of the mill is infinitely superior to RTD run of the mill... Rose tinted specs off...

  • April 11, 2010, 12:06 a.m. CST

    Isn't the BBC America delay because...

    by dj_bollocks

    ...They'll probably be showing the Eurovision shit contest in May thus pre empting the show for a week...

  • April 11, 2010, 12:07 a.m. CST

    Sold for profit?

    by gotilk

    So the profits do not go back into other programming and such? I thought the profits from programming like Who went into the production and survival of other programming. <br><br>I've always known about the licensing thing, but I've always wondered how exactly it worked. Per household or per adult viewer? What happens if you don't pay and they catch you watching TV? Plaster your mug next to the kiddie fiddlers and hoodlums in the morning newspaper or something? <br><br>Thanks for clearing that up, SpyGuy. And good to hear. But I'm always hoping for a good old 22-episode run of the Doctor someday, US style. Probably never going to happen.<br><br>I get the sense that the US will embrace this Doctor quite a bit more than the ones in the past. It's probably just wishful thinking, but I'll be damned if this series hasn't charmed the pants off me this time around.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:08 a.m. CST

    Cheers, Frodo...

    by James_O'Nasty

    I owe you one... Psychically, down the line.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:08 a.m. CST

    I must applaud, "

    by James_O'Nasty

  • April 11, 2010, 12:09 a.m. CST

    Moffat's Worst Episode, out of two, mind"

    by James_O'Nasty

    There had to be a best and a worst, just didn't think, out of two, that it would have come so soon. <p> BURP! WHOOOOOOPEEEEE!!!

  • April 11, 2010, 12:10 a.m. CST

    SO this is never going 2b on SyFy again?

    by RickSlamu2

    who the fuck has BBC America? That a satilite getto station for fucks sake!! SO no who for me again. Fuck! I Had better luck When old Doc was on PBS.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:15 a.m. CST

    Another great episode

    by smellmycheese

    I agree, some of you guys are hard to please. This wasn't the greatest episode ever but was solid and enjoyable. And it made sense. And it had some genuine humour in it. And it made children realise that adults and people sometimes do horrible things even with the best of intentions. And they learned a new word ("mum, what does 'abdicate'...")<br><br>I'd say the Doctor is now properly "cooked" and he's a twitchy, eccentric genius all right. I'm loving this portrayal. <br><br>As for being out-smarted by Amy, I liked the Tenth but he was a bit of a know-it-all wouldn't you say? This is refreshing. I don't think it'll happen often: I dare say Amy was just one step ahead on this occasion - she's known him for 12 years, which is longer than he's known himself in his current incarnation. She was able to see a parallel that he wasn't.<br><br>Plus it was convenient for her to do so to show her merit as the new companion. Job done. <br><br>Next week should be a corker.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:17 a.m. CST

    t'aint necessarily so

    by micbenxyy

    Doctor's Mom? How about a Time Lady with some ethics, and leave it at that. Otherwise you have to prove it. Is she called 'Doctor's Mom' in the script?

  • April 11, 2010, 12:27 a.m. CST

    Dirty boy

    by smellmycheese

    At the start, when the Doctor is holding Amy by the leg as she floats in space, you can see him looking up her nightie. He even chuckles to himself as he sneaks a peek. The Doctor's regenerated into George McFly. Dirty boy. Can't blame him though. I would.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:59 a.m. CST


    by Hairy Nutsack

    You obviously have internet access like I do here in the United States where some people I "know" watched it here in my house, tonight. ;)

  • April 11, 2010, 1:12 a.m. CST

    No, this was not Moffat's worst episode...

    by Rhuragh

    That was the two part Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead, simply due to the presence of the Shrew. In fact, Moffat hated her so much he killed her so he wouldn't have to write her with the Doctor. Of course, "worst" is also a relative term. Moffat's worst doesn't even come close to how fucking bad some of RTD's episodes were. Seriously. Love & Monsters, anyone? In fact, if you were to make a list of the top ten episodes since the relaunch, four of them would be by Moffat. The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances, The Girl in the Fireplace, Blink, The Impossible Planet/The Satan Pit, Human Nature/The Family of Blood, The Unquiet Dead, and then one more episode. Nothing in particular stands out. The Eleventh Hour maybe? If that's the case, then Moffat is responsible for five of the top ten. <BR><BR>Oh, also, anyone care to speculate on whether the space whale is the same thing we saw on Torchwood in Meat?

  • April 11, 2010, 1:19 a.m. CST

    who at farpoint

    by loonatic

    when your big scifi plot twist is that similar to another scifi show, of course people are going to point it out. spoiled an otherwise fine episode for me. Smith and Gillan were great... yeah, this is probably Moffat's worst episode but considering the standards he set are that high, it's still not bad. i still have faith in him

  • April 11, 2010, 1:28 a.m. CST

    Torchwood : Meat

    by gotilk

    In the transcript of the episode (not the script, I don't think, even though it's credited as property of the BBC.. so who knows) it is referred to as a "whale" and it is from "space", so unless there are other kinds of "space whales", and I think we can assume there are not since it wasn't called a "blue space whale" or a "Dipendurian Space Whale", I think it's safe to assume it's the same type of space whale. Before it was hunted to near extinction. Would seem like a nice idea to go back and "save the space whales", eh?

  • April 11, 2010, 1:29 a.m. CST

    OMFG next week looks awesome!

    by alexgk

    I thought this was a very good episode. Pretty cool story, and when Amy figures out about the doc..just a good moment. Amy and the Dr. have great chemistry. She's already better than Rose and Marth in my opinion. Tennant is my favorite Dr, but this new guy is very likeable in the role. New intro rocks too. Loved the sort of teaser at the end of the episode.

  • April 11, 2010, 1:47 a.m. CST

    Oh yes, can't wait for next week either...

    by Rhuragh

    Ian McNeice as Winston Churchill? Sign me the fuck up. McNeice is such a great actor.

  • April 11, 2010, 1:58 a.m. CST

    I'm enjoying them so far

    by damned-dirty-ape

    I've really liked Matt Smiths take on the Doctor so far. He seems to have the right mix of childlike wonder mixed with the pomposity of an old man who's seen it all. I can certainly see some of Troughtons and Pertwee's doctor. I always enjoyed Tennants doctor but found that there was never any build up, planning or thought put into the conclusion of the episode with him, it would always be an 'OH YESS' moment and he'd press a button and that would be it, whereas with Smith and Moffat, you can actually see the things running through the Doctors mind and that he really doesn't always have the answers. It wasn't the greatest Who episode ever, but it really does beat 60% of the RTD era of episodes. The theme music has really grown on me too, it's just a shame the usual series composer, Murray Gold, is there. I've always found his music to be completely out of place and it's always the same.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:08 a.m. CST

    Episodes, Length

    by ShadowTiger

    There will be (as usual) 13 episodes, plus a Christmas special. There will be three two-parter pairs (six of the 13 episodes). The regular episodes have been around 44 minutes long since the series revival in 2004, sometimes (rarely) as short as 41 and as long as 51. As far as the episode went, I really enjoyed it, and usually when I feel an episode is over too quickly (as I did for this one) it's because I was really into it. I think Matt Smith and Karen Gillan are amazing. Looking forward to next week! (And the week after that...River Song *and* the angels from Blink!)

  • April 11, 2010, 2:15 a.m. CST

    I guess Siffy

    by NippleEffect

    isn't airing Doctor Who any longer<br> Probably to make room for 'rasslin shows

  • April 11, 2010, 2:21 a.m. CST

    "a lady called Liz 10 – a coloured descendant "

    by The True Priapic

    Jesus Christ, reading those reviews made my brain ache.Obviously people with no literary ability attempting to use some grammar and failing and not recognising. And quite fucking frankly, what fucking colour is Sophie Okeneda anyway you useless wanker. "coloured"? jesus H Fucking christ almighty.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:46 a.m. CST

    Literary advice

    by tomdolan04

    from someone who says 'fucking', 'fucking' 'wanker', 'fucking' and can't spell the name of the actress their trying to make a point of is probably par for the course. <p> Regardless I'll take it on board.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:48 a.m. CST

    Who Confidential...

    by dj_bollocks

    ...joined up a few dots as it usually does... They all look like they're having a laugh...

  • April 11, 2010, 2:56 a.m. CST

    hey, 70's racist!

    by The True Priapic

    You've used too many apostrophes.

  • April 11, 2010, 3 a.m. CST

    I Enjoyed This

    by proper

    From the first 5 minutes when they gave the impression that the kid got killed I thought to myself "yeah scare the little bas......fellas,this is going to be ok".....New Dr. Who Is the Frickin' Man.Worst - Yeah Right,will some of you just stop :> ;> :> Saying that I got a text during the show and missed an explanation on how thier clothes dried out so clean and fresh.....I'll be very upset if they meet W.Churchill in that state I Tell Ya....Oh crap I'm doing it too :0.........I'd watch this episode in 3 years when it's on rotation on UK Gold or whatever they call it nowadays.Check this out......

  • April 11, 2010, 3:32 a.m. CST

    The TV licence and why it's a VERY good thing.

    by Gabba-UK

    This is going to be a long post but it's something I'm very passionate about as the TV licence is a relatively cheap way we get quality TV and Radio in the UK and it's under threat with the upcoming General Election. It's a one per household 'tax' that funds the BBC. I believe those over seventy are exempt. The money it generates pays for the TV output and a lot of people complain because they 'don't watch the BBC'. What they convieniantly forget of course is that is also funds the BBC national radio stations, their local radio and TV stations and new output. It funds the upkeep and building of the transmission towers which the commercial stations also use. It helped fund the creation and invention of Teletext, nicam stereo broadcasts, digital TV and now terrestial Hi-Def. It also funds the worlds largest TV news gathering operation, the BBC World Service and BBC online. It has a commercial arm, BBC Worldwide, which BBC America is part off. It annoys those in the private sector as it uses public money to turn a profit but as that profit is put back into programming I don't have a problem with it. The BBC is currently going through a self imposed review of it's current structure with the online section being hit the hardest. This will be denied by many by here perhaps but it is common knowledge within the media here. This review is due the upcoming election and the belief that the Conservative's will become the majority party in a hung parliament. Why? Because the Conservatives are supported by Rupert Murdoch, who ordered the editors of the national press to editorially endorse the Tory party, a couple of days after the Shadow Minister of Culture promised a review of the BBC and didn't rule out the revoking of the Royal Charter. Coincedence? Murdoch and his son, who runs Sky TV, have in the last year publicly attacked the BBC, saying it has too much influence within the UK media market and in particular the online news sector. A bit rich Murdoch complaining about too much influence. News International have reciently announced they're to start charging for online news content, both here and abroad. What would be the point of that if customers could get their news for free from other sources, say the BBC website? No point at all, unless News International were confident that the BBC's online prescence were soon to be gutted. Who says we have a free press? The BBC have decided to do it itself in order to prevent perhaps more savage cuts being implemented by David Cameron and his Murdoch pay masters. Flame away if you want but don't complain to me in one year if the next series of Who is all studio based with little sfx because their budget has been halved. You've been warned.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:33 a.m. CST

    I think the reviewers are a little had on this..

    by chronicallydepressedlemming

    They can't ALL be full-on horror episodes. I thought it was a pretty solid Doctor Who episode. The plot was interesting and the character interaction was pretty note-perfect. Can't really see a problem with it. We even got something creepy in the Smilers thrown in there. You can definitely tell the writing is better.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:34 a.m. CST

    Dr Who (and Torchwood) in Wales

    by penhapus

    Because both series up until now have been produced by BBC Wales, by a Welsh production team, shooting primarily in studios in South Wales. While I agree an over reliance on Cardiff is a bit much 'just because it is there' but the hordes crying 'more shows in London' - why? I'd love to see a Who set in the 50s or 60s in Liverpool, an episode or two that makes the most of Glasgow, do something in Belfast, Birmingham or Leeds. I'm guessing sooner or later they'll shoot something in Manchester to make it look sexy to the BBC employees being shipped out to Salford Quays.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:42 a.m. CST

    Gabba-UK.. no flames here..

    by gotilk

    Thanks for the explanation. Pretty much anything Murdoch is for, I'm against. Sounds like he'd like to have a hand in leaning the UK media in a certain direction as he's tried to do here.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:52 a.m. CST

    I wish we could petition to have longer episodes...

    by Medicus

    Back in the day, when a complete Who story was about 90 minutes long, there was enough time to actually develop a few characters. Since the new 40-50 minute format started, I think we the stories have suffered. This one is a prime example. This was an interesting idea and there is no reason that it could not have been done well. But in the 42 minutes alloted for the story, we just had too little time to develop the characters and do them justice. As a result, we have a small girl who trails the team, but seems oddly out of place. We have a queen that seems very good with a gun and barking orders, but no real sense of a person. We have ministers who seem vaguely sinister, but only vaguely and without any real sense of presence. All this just makes me wish we could have more two episode stories. I would not complain about 6-7 two-part stories a season. It is no guarantee that we would get better stories (RTD certainly had difficulty with both formats), but it would increase the chances I think.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:02 a.m. CST

    I saw this when it was called "Encounter at Farpoint".

    by RobinP

    Startling similarity in concept. And when the Doctor and Amy were in that mouth...why weren't they dead instantly. It was explained that they extended the air bubble around the TARDIS in the very beginning, when she was floating around...but the mouth and looing out from behind the teeth? Nah - ain't buying it. Never mind, Daleks next week, and life will be better.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:03 a.m. CST


    by tomdolan04

    Nice write up of the License Fee, pretty much sums up my view too. May 6th is going to be interesting here...<p> And Priapic, sorry I thought you were just trolling at first. If you seriously got 70's racist from coloured descendant in a meant to be fun Doctor Who write-up, then you're no better than the deranged PC mentality that is epidemic in the UK Media (BBC and Daily Mail subscribers I'm looking at you) that is determined to be offended about...anything and everything. <p> This mindset does far more damage to the cause of racism, as it belittles the cause. But you go ahead and keep being 'disgruntled from Tunbridge Wells'

  • April 11, 2010, 4:15 a.m. CST


    by sam jacksons wig

    Do you own your own Tardis my friend? Are you capable of bending time and space? Next weeks episode starts at 8.20pm, which is considerably longer than 25 minutes...... I would hate for you to miss it!!!

  • April 11, 2010, 4:16 a.m. CST


    by sam jacksons wig

    Come on mate! We Britshae o have SOME TV exclusives! We're already boned on pretty much everything from 24 to Lost and most thingsin between when it comes to airing dates.....

  • April 11, 2010, 4:24 a.m. CST

    Moffat=RTD=every doctor who ep.

    by appleipad

    guys its a kid's show, of course none of you are always happy and over analyze it. I mean seriously, the smilers? and no explanation at all? kids stuff to frighten them. its doctor who.......a kids show. and i think RTD bashing is veiled at best, we all know what your saying guys.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:38 a.m. CST

    oh and speaking of Murdoch..

    by emeraldboy

    he outbid everybody for the rights of the pacific. the ten part follow up to band of bros. you can only see this is in the uk if you have sky movies plus and sky movies plus hd. have to wait for box set at christmas. re dr who I agree with appleipad on rtd bashing being veiled and the rtd "is a crap writer" excuse to kick him is a bit feeble.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:38 a.m. CST

    It Wasn't a Message From The Future. . .

    by BroVinny

    The message Amy saw wasn't from a future time; it was from the twenty-minute gap in her memory the brain wipe had created.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:52 a.m. CST

    Oh emeraldboy...

    by Gabba-UK

    you don't HAVE to wait for the boxset... the internet is a wonderful thing. Not that I'm encouraging you to do anything that might be considered slightly dodgy.....

  • April 11, 2010, 4:54 a.m. CST

    Just to confuse matters...

    by penhapus

    next weeks episode is on BBC1 at 6.30pm, and on BBC HD at 8.20pm *thanks for that BBC planning, thanks*

  • April 11, 2010, 5:03 a.m. CST

    If you're going to do naughty internet viewing...

    by penhapus least use an IP address confuser and watch via iPlayer, so at least your 'vote' counts in the viewing figures.

  • April 11, 2010, 6:31 a.m. CST


    by Candy ass monkey suit

    Thats not actually quite true. Other BBC programmes like Hustle and Survivors ar all 60 mins long without breaks so i don't know why who should be truncated into 44 mins? The Beast below felt rushed to me and i'm more worroed about next weeks Victory of the daleks ep as im sure this is a story that could justify another 15 mins or so.

  • April 11, 2010, 6:38 a.m. CST

    V For Star Wars -- F for fucking up Amy...

    by DC Films

    Take the future fascism of 'V for Vendetta'....<p><p> Throw in a 'V for Vendetta' mask wearing aesthetic....<p><p> Throw in an 'Empire strikes Back' scene in a space monster's mouth, and a 'this ain't a ship [moon], it's a space whale [space station] conceit....<p><p> Throw in a falling down a chute into putrid crap (a la Star Wars) scene....<p><p> Throw in a 'Prince And The Pauper' conceit (the Queen walks among her subjects in disguise)....<p><p> ....And there's the recipe for Matt Smith's second episode....<p><p> I have no problem with this plagerism - they're good sources and it's done with good intention -- and nothing truely original.<p><p> What i do have a bloody problem with is Amy Pond's totally implausible character development...<p><p>She hardly know's this crazy Dr Who bloke, but already she 'knows his pain....' --give me a break - give her a chance to get to know him first!!!<p><p>She's catapulting over a thousand years into a deep space future that has country floating in the heavens, but takes it all in her stride - nothing unusual there!!! Straight away picking padlocks (something all kiss'o grams are trained to do!!!?) and solving problems....<p><p>I like Moffats writing (the creepy first act of 'Eleventh Hour' was best Dr Who since the early 80s), but boy has he shot his load here - he's blown Amy development for the next 5 episodes and given a decent actress nowhere for her character to expand into - there can be no education and surprises for a girl picking padlocks on her first visit to future space.<p><p>Moffat's given her a vertical learning curve, so for me, she's 100% cartoon. What a shame.

  • April 11, 2010, 6:43 a.m. CST

    Medicus, about the episode length

    by chronicallydepressedlemming

    Actually old Doctor Who episodes weren't super long in themselves, but the plot of a given destination would last 3-4 episodes each. So it's a choice between that and more stories/destinations with a few 2-episode spanners thrown in. While I'd like to see them take their time with a story, I'd prefer more locations.

  • April 11, 2010, 6:56 a.m. CST


    by kuryakin

    It's always lazy people who can't be bothered changing the way they speak who moan about "PC gone mad". The term 'coloured' hasn't been acceptable for oooh, twenty years or so, any more than Paki or wog. For fucks sake, some people... <p> Then again you also talk about the "cause of racism" when I assume you mean anti-racism and (most comically of all) refer to subscribers of the right-wing, xenophobic and frankly , stupid and racist Daily Mail as prime examples of this PC culture <p> Clearly you are either tripping or having a laugh

  • April 11, 2010, 7:01 a.m. CST

    Gabba UK

    by kuryakin

    Never a truer word spoken, that speech Murdoch's son did where he accused the BBC of having too much sway was jaw-dropping. <p> Seems to be the latest thing to bash the BBC and the licence fee but for fucks sake it's a tenner a month - I pay that for a Spotify account and I pay more than that for an unlimited cinema card. <p> Any one of the services you mention is more than worth that money - the online arm is truly outstanding,every kind of resource you'd imagine online and free. One thing I'd also add to the list is the 2 kids channels. <p> CBeebies is always on in the Kuryakin house and what a pleasure it is to have a TV channel that entertains kids without bombarding them with ads for shitty toys and crap that I'd have to shell out for

  • April 11, 2010, 8:07 a.m. CST

    Thanks for the support guys.

    by Gabba-UK

    I usually get flamed for bigging up the BBC. But in a media dominated by reality TV shite like X-Factor, Britains got no fucking talent, I'm a celebraty (just), it's just nice to have an oasis of decent telly, Strictly Come Dancing and Eastenders not withstanding. Can you imagine ITV giving Top Gear the budget they must have? You want to turn a Robin Relient into a space shuttle? Here's the cash and don't come back untill you have a classic moment of TV. If the BBC's wildlife dept made just one series of the quality of Planet Earth every 3 years it would be worth the licence fee. But they don't, they make one every year. And can you ever imagine Sky commissioning a period drama series with the level of quality the BBC can? The BBC is one of the greatest cultural achievments of modern western civilisation. End of discussion.

  • April 11, 2010, 8:20 a.m. CST

    Unlimited cinema card?

    by gotilk

    Jeeze, I'm in the wrong country. I gotta agree about the RTD hatred (as opposed to fair criticism) being veiled "something else". The outright hatred thrown in that man's direction over the last few years, especially in regard to Torchwood (which was a BLAST! you know it was.. and you completely fell in love with Ianto...and that's the true reason why you hated yoursel.. I mean the show... just admit it, you closeted poofters), is just completely over-the-top unfair. Sure, his episodes were goofy sometimes. But then again, some of the most hated episodes by fans are some of the ones I've most enjoyed. Including but not limited to the UNIVERSALLY detested "Love and Monsters", which I found refreshing and full of ELO, which is always a plus in my book. Did it belong in the Who-verse? Probably not, but that didn't prevent me from getting a hell of a kick out of it. Uh oh.. here come the flames now. That episode is SO hated. No apologies. And even if you hate RTD, you have to admit he could have been much looser with the history and continuity. There was a lot of attention to details, and connections. Even though some of the connections had a forced, "mitichlorians" and "building c3po" feel to them.

  • April 11, 2010, 8:27 a.m. CST

    I'm curious as to the unlimited cinema card myself kuryakin.

    by Gabba-UK

    How'd you get that, which cinema and how much? 'Cos if it's less than £250 a year it would save me a bloody fortune!!!

  • April 11, 2010, 9:11 a.m. CST

    chronicallydepressedlemming - episode length

    by Medicus

    The story arcs themselves were usually 4-6 episodes long in the classic series (a few were shorter or longer, but that was the standard). That means that the average story was at least 90 minutes or so for 4 episode stories and slightly longer then 2 hours for 6 episode stories. For much of the run, there were 5-7 stories per season. What I'm advocating is having more two-parters so that we can return to that format which I think works well for Doctor Who. Unlike some shows, it is a series that has to reinvent itself almost completely between each story and as such I think does better when there is more time to develop a backstory for the non-regular characters.

  • April 11, 2010, 9:41 a.m. CST

    The worst Moffat episode...

    by Cap'n Jack still better than the best RTD episode.

  • April 11, 2010, 9:41 a.m. CST

    too young

    by MrShootist

    Smith is too young, IHMO. Too bad they cannot cast a Pertwee or Troughton. Did anyone catch the "ginger" hair comment in the regeneration scene. The only Doctor with Red hair was . . . Tom Baker. Bring back the Doctor's Daughter!

  • April 11, 2010, 9:46 a.m. CST

    If RTD had written this episode...

    by Steve Rogers

    it would be taking a kicking and called a rip off of other stories - "space whale" is hardly a brand new sci-fi conceit - but because it's the Moff the RTD bashers *have* to love it, and any flaws it did have would get overlooked. Personally I thought it was great, but let's not pretend personal fanboy bias doesn't come into play. For me the new series has started brilliantly, the only shit things are the new theme (URRRGGH) and the sometimes sub-par CGI. Smith isn't a better Doctor than Tennant.... YET.

  • April 11, 2010, 9:50 a.m. CST

    You people are too high on your horses

    by nrn

    That episode was brilliant. It flew by and was an awesome spectacle - (The UK in space). Plus it didn't have the oh I GOT IT LETS JUST PUSH A BUTTON! Plus Amy is actually a SMART companion, unlike rose and Donna that were just there because he wanted company. In total I really liked this episode and don't see where the complaints are coming from. Are you guys just looking for a reason to complain? Go watch Heroes.

  • April 11, 2010, 9:53 a.m. CST

    Who has always been amateurish, that's what gives it charm.

    by Gabba-UK

    The series has always made do with budgets that are less than the catering budget for most other shows. It's those limitations that have made it what it is. I'm constantly amazed with what they can do with the resources they have. So it can be accused of being amateurish, big deal. It's still enjoyable television and has greater merit than Z-Factor ever will.

  • April 11, 2010, 10:16 a.m. CST

    Gabba - thoroughly agree about the BBC.

    by Hint_of_Smegma

    I've been lucky enough to travel extensively the last 16 or so years, and have lived for the last 6 in Canada and the US. Being a displaced Brit, I can say quite truthfully that while there are high spots of content on other television networks, none of them - not even HBO - come close to the consistent amount of high quality television that the BBC offers - and that's before you even get into the radio services and the world service. I can access all of them via a proxy server in the UK, so I watch any show I want from the BBC iPlayer hooked through my television - and any show I want from ITV, Ch 4 and 5 for that matter from their online services. I could do that for free if I wanted, not being subject to the license fee here - but I firmly believe the BBC is worth every penny, and more - so I still pay my license fee as if I'm still at my old UK address. I'd pay it at twice, three times the current level. No-one makes as good television consistently as the BBC. Their radio service alone is worth the money - jeez, I'd pay 200 quid a year just to hear I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. Long live the BBC. That said, wish they'd move Who from being a kid's show to being aimed at an older audience like it used to be.

  • April 11, 2010, 10:31 a.m. CST

    Steve Rogers, if RTD had written this episode..

    by chronicallydepressedlemming

    the space whale would have been gay and the Doctor would have spent the entire episode saying how amazing humans are while they drill into its head.<p>

  • April 11, 2010, 10:42 a.m. CST

    if you all think the bbc is bad..

    by emeraldboy

    you should see what passes for tv in the continent. the berlusconi show documentary is one finest things bbc broadcast in recent times.

  • April 11, 2010, 10:47 a.m. CST

    Candy ass monkey suit

    by Corwin_X2

    I think it depends on the market they feel it'll sell into. Hustle for example isn't likely to have major international distribution. I figure they're thinking (or may already have the contracts) that commercial stations will want to run this as an hour long with ads. Other programmes may be made as 60min and shown elsewhere as an hour and a half or edited down to make room for ads.

  • April 11, 2010, 10:49 a.m. CST

    Murdoch hates tje bbc and wants it destroyed..

    by emeraldboy

    on the evening of the publication of Hutton, the sun newspaper broke its contractual agreement with fleet street. the rule was the report was to published in the press at midnight on the day its publication. The sun published the story first at 11.55pm. Treveor Kavanagh then went on the media to say that he had gotten report from seurity source. but refused to say. but the man who really destroyed the bbc Sir john Birt. there was item on newsnight about the late Charles Wheeler and you can see questioning lord birt with some steel.

  • April 11, 2010, 11:26 a.m. CST

    Steve Rogers

    by Rhuragh

    ...except the talkback is FULL of people talking about all the sources Moffat borrowed from, deliberately or not, to write this episode. So, yeah, you'd have a point, if, you know, this talkback didn't exist.

  • April 11, 2010, 11:28 a.m. CST

    TNG did not invent living spacecraft..

    by DrNookie

    I remember the first TNG and panning it to my mate for ripping off the concept from the author Julian May. She (actually Julia) probably got it from someone else, so give Moff a break. Not a together episode mind.

  • April 11, 2010, 11:29 a.m. CST


    by Rhuragh

    While I agree with you that Moffat isn't writing the Doctor like RTD did with his deus ex machina bursts of insight at the last second followed by a string of techno-babble gibberish, technically the solution to tonight's episode WAS to push a button. :) Of course, it was Amy pushing it, not the Doctor.

  • April 11, 2010, 11:31 a.m. CST

    Speaking of borrowed sources...

    by Rhuragh

    Several people commented last week that the Doctor taking Amy away on her wedding night was very much like Peter Pan taking Wendy away so she wouldn't grow up. Some also cited the scene from the preview and the beginning of last night's episode with Amy flying as a direct quote from Peter Pan. You were all right on the money. Moffat himself mentions the Peter Pan imagery in last night's Doctor Who Confidential. Good catch, all.

  • April 11, 2010, 11:34 a.m. CST

    For those asking about Unlimited cinema cards...

    by moobit

    If it's the same as the one i used to have, its for Cineworld and they are now £13.50 per month. I used to have one myself when they were £9.99/month, but I cancelled when they put the price up (and I had a daughter...) ;-)

  • April 11, 2010, 11:40 a.m. CST

    Gee, you guys sure make the BBC sound great..........

    by axcel1

    I'm sure we americans only get a fraction of that on PBS & our cable. Plus, you get the best of american tv, too. (Of course, our best is crap.)

  • April 11, 2010, 11:55 a.m. CST

    I thought it was self indulgent and most of all boring.

    by Smashing

    Moffatt seems to be remaking his older episodes over and over, this was another kids, monsters and oh look something no one has spotted, I was dissapointed and thought it looked cheap and a little naff. Why would a UK over 1000 years in the future look like the 1920's? why would the Doc lie to Amy? Why was the entire premise again based on a one note trick? I hope things improve but am worried here, plus we get it the shows British, point made, enough patriotism and enough bloody fairy tale, it's a science fiction show ffs.

  • April 11, 2010, 11:59 a.m. CST

    Don't be too harsh on your own TV axcel1.

    by Gabba-UK

    When American tv is good, it's often very, very, good. Anything that HBO makes pretty much rocks and I consider The West Wing as the greatest drama series ever made.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:23 p.m. CST

    gotilk, grow the fuck up...

    by spud mcspud

    Wow, I hated RTD's writing so I must be a self-loathing closeted Ianto-fancying homosexual.<P> No, I hated RTD because he wrote public service announcement style sermons disguised as soap operas with SF elements crowbarred in there to qualify it as SF. The best SF he wrote - TORCHWOOD: CHILDREN OF EARTH - was THE QUATERMASS CONCLUSION in all but name. I hated Ianto because he was a shit character played by an actor who could have been outclassed by a birch tree, he was so fucking wooden. And most of all, when I watch drama I watch it to be entertained, not preached at. For an avowed atheist, that RTD sure was good at preaching his version of how life should be from his particular soapbox, which unfortunately happened to be one of the best British SF shows ever created.<P> Either you're a troll, or you're really that dumb. But either way - grow up.

  • April 11, 2010, 12:30 p.m. CST

    Steve Rogers - Wrong again...

    by spud mcspud

    Nope, I'm an avowed RTD hater and I thought this episode was structually all over the place, had too many Tennant-era lapses into histrionics and melodrama (such as the Doctor blaming Amy for the fact that the humans were torturing the whale, erm, why is it AMY'S fault? Xenophobic much??). I think the Doictor would be smarter than that - if after 900+ years he hated humans that much, why wouldn't he just avoid Earth like the plague? I'm getting well sick of hearing how awful humans are ('cos, y'know, the fucking DALEKS were SO much more morally advanced), how terrible the UK is (Moffat, stop being a racist and fucking deal with your anti-English hate, same as RTD should - I've been to Scotland AND Wales and they're nothing to fucking shout about, either), how great the Doctor is all the fucking time... Same tropes, same old same old. Moff said he'd shake stuff up a bit - last night wasn't much evidence of that, was it??<P> Still, like many have said before me, a shit Moff episode is still better than an awesome RTD episode, mainly because it still feels like story first, soapbox preaching second (anti-English digs notwithstanding). And like chronicallydepressedlemming said before me, "If RTD had written this episode, the space whale would have been gay and the Doctor would have spent the entire episode saying how amazing humans are while they drill into its head"... ;P

  • April 11, 2010, 12:31 p.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    DR WHO - THE BEAST BELOW (Episode 2)<P> So. The UK is in space in a giant spaceship, and Amy Pond gets her first proper trip away from home with the Doctor. And much weird (though strangely familiar) stuff happens...<P> Minor spoilers only from here on in. We're following our new Doctor and his sexy new companion as they board Starship UK - the remainder of England and Northern Ireland (we're free of the Taffs and the Jocks, who went their own way) and immediately spot a little girl crying. The new Doctor does his patent "notice EVERYTHING" thing to realise that something is rotten in the state of Spaceship UK, and it take Amy no time at all to get herself into mortal peril. Then a not-at-all-anything-like-V-from-V-FOR-VENDETTA shadowy figure called Liz Ten shows up, helps our heroes, and the REAL mystery is revealed - that something terrifying lies beneath Starship UK, and that something is ultimately not so much frightening as terribly tragic. And that to do the right thing, the Doctor has to either do something dreadful or do something dreadful. What will he do??<P> THE GOOD - Well, Matt Smith is still knocking it way out of the park, in a hokey adventure that moves at a cracking pace. Karen Gillan is suitably feisty as Amy, but Matt Smith gets all the best lines and scenes here, make no mistake. then there's Sophie Okenedo, being one of those temporary companions in the episode who nearly steals the show, all Cockney patter and Lara Croft swagger as she blows away Smilers left and right. Then there are the Smilers themselves - which are awesome looking creatures, absolutely nightmarish. The set design is completely illogical, but looks FANTASTIC, assuming that when the UK relocates to the stars it will morph into the centre of London. The attention to detail is just staggering, and it all looks great. A crack in the universe is there for those who keep their eyes peeled. The segue into next week's adventure is a lovely touch, too. There is a funny (but completely dumb if you know anything about whale physiology) nod there to THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (think "this is no cave"), and also a line directly ripped of from STAR WARS in there too. And the eventual end to the mystery of what Starship UK actually is, and the full horror of what that means (and what it says about all the people who colluded to create this horrific situation in the first place) is suitably horrible, frightening and extremely upsetting to boot. Let's just say, this is a hard watch for anyone who doesn't like cruelty to really big animals...<P> THE BAD - Moff's treading water here, and though a bad Moff episode is more than equal to a great RTD or a mid-range anyone else episode, it's a bit worrying to see an episode with virtually no structure whatsoever, some truly massive leaps in logic, and over-hysterical melodrama coming out of nowhere in a manner reminiscent of RTD at his worst. The line "Nobody human has anything to say to me today!" is one great example - from nowhere, the Doctor is blaming Amy Pond for something terrible that some future humans 1000 years after her birth have done. Why is it Amy's fault? And why do we have to have an obligatory "Doctor hates humans" scene in the first few episodes of every new season? It feels like some random RTD stuff crammed in there every time this happens, and it's jarring. If the doctor felt this strongly every time he disvoered human fallibility, he'd never come back to Earth again - so move the Doctor on from this. It's almost as stale and boring as all the Tennant-era moping that (thankfully) we seem to be getting past. There's also a worrying tendency for Amy to suddenly deduce things that are absolutely unrelated to each other - like the behaviour of a scary beastie being compared to how the Doctor behaves. He's a Time Lord, it's a beastie - HOW are they going to behave in the same way? Too many massive leaps in logic that would not be made here are being made. Moff, tighten up those script polishes, stat!<P> THE AWESOME - Matt Smith and Karen Gillan. Roll on next week. DALEKS!!!

  • April 11, 2010, 12:33 p.m. CST

    Comparing this to ST:TNG...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Hey, you may as well compare it to Moya on FARSCAPE or the living ships on LEXX. Living creatures turned into spaceships (or space cities) is nothing new in TV SF...

  • April 11, 2010, 12:39 p.m. CST

    and I actually LIKED "LOVE AND MONSTERS"...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Although that had to be the most misjudged blowjob joke in the history of blowjob jokes - it's a fucking KIDS SHOW, RUSSELL!! - I really liked it. The madness of Rose and the Doctor chasing the Hoix at the beginning, the whole conceit of Elton thinking the Doctor killed his Mum as a kid when actually he tried to save her, Peter Kay's hilarious yet still sinister performance, everyone they got to play the LINDA members (particularly Marc Warren - this was the first thing I'd seen him in and he was AWESOME), the loneliness of being an SF geek with no friends and the feelings he got of fellowship and friendship when he joined LINDA... Marc Warren really sold and carried that episode, and even Jackie Tyler wasn't TOO annoying in that episode. And you can't go wrong with ELO either. My only real hates in that episode were the Doctor yet again doing his "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry" schtick for the gazillionth time, and that massively misjudged and inappropriate blowjob joke. but of everything I've ever seen of RTD's writing in WHO, I think LOVE AND MONSTERS had the most heart.<P> And how can you hate an episode that has Peter Kay say "I'm not from Raxacoricofallapatorius, I'm from its twin planet Clom! I spit on 'em!". Funny as hell, and full of heart...

  • April 11, 2010, 12:48 p.m. CST

    Not enough joepardy or peril in Moff's WHO...

    by spud mcspud

    Nobody died in the 1st episode, nobody died in this one. Nobody died in THE EMPTY CHILD / THE DOCTOR DANCES, and the only guy who died in BLINK did so of old age. Yes, people died in SILENCE IN THE LIBRARY / FOREST OF THE DEAD, but it was hardly the most frightening death, was it? And the deaths in THE GIRL IN THE FIREPLACE were either offscreen (the ship's crew) or of old age (Madame De Pompadour). So... Moff... MAKE WITH THE DEATHS!! DOCTOR WHO IS NOT SCARY UNLESS PEOPLE CAN ACTUALLY DIE ON THE SHOW!!<P> Actually, NOW I'm starting to worry about the Moff's reign after all. Must have faith, must have faith...

  • April 11, 2010, 12:50 p.m. CST

    JEOPARDY, not joepardy...

    by spud mcspud

    Damn this keyboard! Who'd have sonic??

  • April 11, 2010, 12:54 p.m. CST

    I loved how Moff could be anti-english too

    by spike fan

    When England pays more in proportion of Tax to prop up Scotlaand and its dead beat economy. Which lets be honest is the main reason why the dont Vote SNP and declare independence that and the fact the whole fucking Labour Govt is mainly made up of Scots# Its also a misnomer to have the Starship UK and just have England. UK stands for United Kingdom which includes England,Scotland,Wales and Northern Ireland if it does not have one of those others its just FUCKING ENGLAND. Besides its pretty damm hypocritical when the Moff works in England and makes his living off the BBC.

  • April 11, 2010, 1:01 p.m. CST

    RTD / Moffat

    by rosasaks

    DC Films already made some of the points I came here to articulate, so I'll just agree that I didn't mind the cribbing from sources such as Star Wars... what I DID mind was the way the story fell apart at the end, because the Doctor's emotional response was too overwrought for the flimsy exposition, I just sat there blinking, feeling totally disconnected from whatever he was upset about. <p> It was enough to make me question whether we might detect something a bit unexpected... namely that RTD wasn't very good at coming up with his own stories, but may have been playing a substantial roll in polishing the other scripts that came to him. Maybe he was good at that. <p> Still dislike a lot of the music. Which sucks, given how great the original theme was. Think the whole show has got serious tonal problems too. But Moffit seems to be more literate with regard to the history of TV, and the show itself, so am encouraged by some of the things that he's getting right. It could be he's in a bridging phase of allowing some visual continuity to the past. Except realistically, it's just the subpar BBC budget, isn't it. I've always held the belief that Buffy was the model for the revamped series. I think Moffat has wider vision, so hopefully good stories to come. It seems to me he's trying to link the stories at beginning and end more so than recent years. Not sure how that's going to play. <p> I find the action sequences the last two weeks very jarring with the style of what else he's looking to do. Hopefully his directors and editors can sort that out and give the show a more distinct, consistent feel. I don't think the problem is Moffat's vision, it's the physical execution. The production doesn't feel as accomplished as it should for a show that's effectively in it's fifth season I guess. And when you compare what a genre show like LOST can do with a standalone episode like Ab Aeterno, well it's a bit embarrassing. Yet I guess there was some charm to the fact this week they seemed almost to be channelling a retro 1980s WHO British feel, almost. Continuity to past eras of the show too, in feel. Except I'm not sure they got it quite right. It feels uneven in style even within specific episodes, let alone from one to the next.

  • April 11, 2010, 1:13 p.m. CST

    spud mcspud

    by gotilk

    If I grow up, will you promise to grow skin thicker than a sheet of facial tissue?

  • April 11, 2010, 1:19 p.m. CST

    ...and did I call it or what?

    by gotilk

    You're like my ex sleeping with her new boyfriend across town.<br><br> COMING.A.MILE.AWAY.

  • First, thank you for the happy birthday wishes. Second, would I be right in saying that we don't have a Moff Lovefest this week? I'm still giving this one two thumbs sideways, if only because of the last-minute save by Amy.

  • April 11, 2010, 1:54 p.m. CST

    who has always had an adult following

    by brabon300

    doesnt stop it from being a kids show<p> this epi was too rushed<p> and seriously...he aint the watcher and he has broken his prime directive since the early days, so can he not say that he is only there to observe?

  • April 11, 2010, 1:56 p.m. CST

    Rhuragh - difference between noticing and complaining

    by Steve Rogers

    Yeah, people are citing the similarities/sources here, but the level of ranting bile that would accompanied such posts in the RTD era is markedly absent. Still, we're early doors yet. A season or two in and you can bet we'll seeing people with the old "AGAIN with this fairytale shite?! Give me some good old Bidmead po-faced SF!"

  • April 11, 2010, 2:01 p.m. CST

    I would love to know how long Moffat's contract with bbc is..

    by emeraldboy

    I dont envy his successor whoever it will be in the future. this person has alot of shit coming thier way.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:15 p.m. CST

    gotilk - About my thick skin...

    by spud mcspud

    You can't help but have a thick skin when you've taken flak for 5 years from the RTD apologists as I have. But that old argument - that making a statement about disliking an openly gay writer's style of writing shows I must be a closeted self-loathing homosexual - is naive, poorly thought out, easily disproven, not particularly intelligent and just all around plain dumb. I don't get why this keeps on getting thrown around - why does hating a gay writer's style of writing make me a gay guy in denial? That's like saying that as Smashing disagrees with me per the RTD era stuff, and I'm a straight guy, that Smashing is a straight guy who's denying his heterosexuality! See how that works? It's ridiculous!<P> Having a laugh is one thing (and if you were just being funny, then apologies, it didn't come across in your post) but this dumbass arugment gets so tired after five years of it...<P> As for how tight RTD kept the continuity - so why was Rassilon suddenly the Lord President of Gallifrey? And about those powers the Master suddenly got from the wonky regenerating in THE END OF TIME? Or the entire "killed the Daleks and Gallifrey - nope, suddenly trapped them in a time-lock instead" thing regarding the Doctor's immediate past? In fact, the entire Time War thing itself?<P> I think we can safely say, RTD DID play fast and loose with the continuity.<P> I DO agree with you on LOVE AND MONSTERS though. Barring the blowjob joke, and the gazillionth use of "I'm sorry... I'm so sorry", I thought that episode was full of heart, funny as hell, and beautifully played by everyone concerned. To this day I don't understand the level of vitriol aimed at it. It's one of very few RTD episodes that I will wholeheartedly defend, because it's one of the rare few episodes that doesn't feel like a politically correct sermon aimed at the white working/middle-class indigenous English heterosexual males in the audience - basically, those of us who represent EVERYTHING that RTD detests most in his audience...

  • April 11, 2010, 2:18 p.m. CST

    "The Space Whale would have been gay"? Bullshit!

    by foxthebloodied

    The only gay characters RTD had in main Who (we'll leave Torchwood to one side) were tiny bit characters and even then it was fleeting references. You're acting like he wrote the Doctor getting blowjobs from rent boys every five seconds. I'm so sorry gay people exist. How fucking terrible that is for you. Clearly we should go back to the good old days when only heterosexual white guys were allowed on TV.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:19 p.m. CST

    axcel1 - Cautious thumbs almost up...

    by spud mcspud

    It's by no means a shit episode, but the lack of real jeopardy or danger (not one person has died yet!), coupled with some bizarre shifts in tone (the Doctor's completely uncalled-for outburst of "Nobody human has anything to say to me today!") and humungous leaps in logic (how does Amy figure out that hitting the Abdicate button will NOT destroy the station, and that the whale will NOT destroy the spaceship, JUST by knowing that the Doctor seems like a nice guys after the, oh, 48 hours she's known him??) is ringing alarm bells. Reasons to be cheerful: (1) It's utterly unfair, not to mention unrealistic, to expect anyone - even the Grand Moffat Steven - to get it right 100% all of the time, and (2) It's still 100% better than most of RTD's output, so let's see where this goes, eh??<P> Bottom line: THE BEAST BELOW felt like treading water, but it's still early days, and I want to see more about where this Pandoracle arc goes...

  • April 11, 2010, 2:21 p.m. CST

    Gabba-UK, don't get the wrong idea.........................

    by axcel1

    I like american tv, for the most part. There are some things on tv I don't like, reality show, partly because they are cheaper to make than scripted shows and networks not giving a new tv show a chance to build an audience, (If it's not munber one in the ratings, out it goes.) I do wonder how that works in the UK, the same as here in the US?

  • April 11, 2010, 2:25 p.m. CST


    by DC Films

    I agree, Moffat's heart is in the right place - his aims seem to be towards good genre storytelling, rather than RTD populist show-boating (though he was very good at that, and it was what the relaunch needed at the time to find a new audience. <p><p>But as you say, the execution is poor - there seems to be a lot of hangers-on from the RTD years in the crew, so they're still producing that now hackneyed tone, despite Moffat's efforts. But this can change - they need to get hiring (i'm available :)<p><p>Biggest problem thought, that has leapt from RTD to Moffat, is that the original Who (that i grew up on) was kids TV adults could enjoy. Now those kids have grown up and so new Who is adult TV made for kids to enjoy --- in short, it used to be for smart kids, but now it's for dumb adults. They need to stop patronizing the smart kids in favor of the x-factor addicted brats and put a bit of intellect and class back into Who.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:29 p.m. CST

    Lets keep it real ....


    That was SHIT .... next week will be better.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:31 p.m. CST

    Nobody human has anything to say to me today!

    by Rhuragh

    You have that completely wrong. That is NOT an RTD'ism. I found that very much in character and very haunting. Allow me to explain. <BR><BR>In the wake of World War II psychologists attempted to explain the phenomenon of authoritarianism and how normal people could be manipulated into doing horrible things. Enter Yale University's Stanley Milgram. He was prompted to study authoritarianism due to the defense used by Adolf Eichmann at his trial. Eichmann claimed he was little more than an accountant and that he only did what he was ordered to do. Hannah Arendt famously coined the phrase "the banality of evil," to describe the phenomenon. Milgram, fearing Arendt was right, was interested to know whether anyone could be "ordered" to do horrendous actions such as were carried out under the Nazi's Final Solution. <BR><BR>Milgram designed an experiment to test the theory. He recruited volunteers to take part in an experiment ostensibly intended to test whether electric shocks could be used to prompt better memorization skills. The experiment consisted of the volunteer, the "teacher," unaware of his true purpose in the experiment, and two actors, an "experimenter," and, on the other side of a glass wall in another room, a "learner." The learner-actor was given an assignment to memorize nonsensical word pairs and recite them at the prompting of the teacher-volunteer. If the learner-actor failed to recite them properly (as he did deliberately), the experimenter-actor would instruct the teacher-volunteer to administer electric shocks to the learner-actor in increasingly larger amounts. The amount of the shock was clearly visible to the teacher-volunteer as was their effect acted out realistically by the learner-actor (he wasn't really being shocked, he was just acting very convincingly as if he were being shocked). If the teacher-volunteer showed hesitation at delivering the increasingly large shocks, the experimenter-actor would calmly reassure them that everything was fine. If asked, the experimenter-actor would confirm that they were responsible for anything that happened and that the learner-actor had agreed to be there willingly. Milgram's experiments found that 65% of the volunteers would willingly sublimate their own conscience to the authority of the experimenter and deliver assuredly fatal electric shocks to the learner even when able to visually observe the learner struggling and then going quiescent at the shocks. <BR><BR>Subsequent experiments by Milgram and others in authoritarianism have shown results north of 80% would be susceptible to submission to authority of this nature. After World War II, there were many people in the United States who claimed that the Nazi phenomenon could not and would not ever happen here. They claimed that we were morally superior to the Germans of the 1930s and 40s, and that such a thing was impossible. From Milgram's results, it is clear that such a thing COULD happen here, or indeed _ANYWHERE_ on Earth no matter how "advanced" the society. <BR><BR>If you haven't studied authoritarianism, you really should. It's like going down the rabbit hole. A very nightmarish rabbit hole. A decent understanding of the state of the science of authoritarianism can be gleaned by reading the Wikipedia pages on Authoritarianism, Milgram experiment, Stanford prison experiment (I highly recommend that one, it shows an even more terrifying experiment than Milgram devised), and Robert Altemeyer. Altemeyer is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Manitoba. He is one of the most prominent experts on authoritarianism and has made available an everypersons PDF explanation of his research, as well as covering earlier research by Milgram and Zimbardo (responsible for the Stanford prison experiment). <BR><BR>Continued in the next post...

  • April 11, 2010, 2:34 p.m. CST

    Oh, spud mcspud.....................

    by axcel1

    I was going to say maybe this year's theme was "Nobody Dies", but, with the Daleks showing up next week and it being set in 1940s WWII, I think people will be dying next saturday on DW, don't you?

  • April 11, 2010, 2:35 p.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    Methinks chronicallydepressedlemming was being disingenuous - over-stating it for comic effect. But if you want to get into all that, consider this: current stats claim that approx 6-10% of the world's population is gay. Assuming this is correct, it means that out of every 100 characters - main, nin-main or just extras - only 6 to 10 of those characters should be gay, if we're being all proportionally representational about it. The proportion of gay characters in RTD's WHO was substantially higher - so if you want to get into the politics of it, the straight characters were under-represented in RTD's tenrue at WHO!<P> But then, you don't want to hear that, do you? It's all or nothing for the RTD defenders - if we protest, we're self-loathing gays who hate seeing ourselves outed as gay characters in WHO. It CAN'T be that you're just trying to have your particular socio-sexual group over-represented in a mainstream kids' TV show, can it??<P> For crying out loud - you got your wish. The BBC made a gay SF show. It was TORCHWOOD, and it was fucking shite. Enjoy your gay-oriented SF, and STFU about it. The rest of us will continue to bask in the glow of a new WHO whose primary purpose is to entertain us, THEN to inform us - rather than spend every fucking week telling us how evil we are for being heterosexual.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:38 p.m. CST


    by emeraldboy

    there was a very interesting article once i was sent about drs and terrorism.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:44 p.m. CST


    by Rhuragh

    Altemeyer's guide can be downloaded for free here, by the way: <>. Oh, also, while you may think that you wouldn't willingly go along with throwing Jewish people into ovens, the experiments I listed above show that you're probably wrong. Most people claim to be above such things, but given the proper societal pressures, these experiments show that upwards of at least 60% of us would happily accede to the pressure to conform. <BR><BR>Now, how does this relate to Doctor Who? The Doctor has made a habit of picking companions who invariably will do the right thing. They don't sheepishly follow along and conform with the rest of the pack just so they don't stick out. The Doctor's anger towards Amy was very much justified there. She learned that the future British people were doing something absolutely repugnant and instead of confronting it, and helping the Doctor rectify the situation, she chose to accept it. Even worse, she chose to wipe it from her mind so she wouldn't have to live with the knowledge of her tacit approval of the situation. To me, with my knowledge of authoritarianism, that stinks of rank cowardice to me. I do think I am one of the few who would refuse to conform in a situation like that, and unfortunately, as the episode shows, Amy isn't. This is actually my biggest problem with the episode. Just because Amy solves the problem in the end doesn't mean that she still doesn't have the character defect she showed at the beginning of the episode, a character defect that the Doctor was right in despising. However, as Altemeyer's research shows, once authoritarian followers are confronted with the knowledge of their behavior they do sometimes reform (unfortunately, not often). It is possible that this experience has changed her such that she would not make the same mistake again. I do hope that Moffat is smart enough to follow up on this in later stories. Considering that it's Doctor Who, there tend to be an abundance of such situations, so I'm sure we'll see more on this.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:45 p.m. CST

    Beautiful. AICN ate the URL.

    by Rhuragh

    The PDF by Altemeyer on Authoritarianism can be downloaded here:

  • April 11, 2010, 2:48 p.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    I know the Milgram study well (I studied psychology to A-level for 4 years at college) and it feeds well into various other great studies in authoritarianism, such as Morton Rhue's seminal novel THE WAVE, based on an experiment by an American teacher back in the late 60s.<P> My point wasn't that authoritariansim doesn't exist, or that it doesn't have a bearing on this episode - it's obvious that that;s how the humans could continue to do what they did to the whale. My point is that the Doctor just went from nice guy trying to save the day to raving anti-human hater to nice guy Doctor again - and not in a well-written, fluid way, but in a box-ticking, we-have-to-have-a-Doctor-loses-it-with-the-humans scene way. If the Doctor hated humanity as much as these constant tiresome anti-human rants would have us believe he does, then why the hell does he keep on coming back to the Earth and to its rescue? A line about how it took one human (Amy) to figure out how to stop this torture and madness somehow redeeming the evil actions than started the torture in the first place - THAT would have re-established the Doctor's true feelings towards the human race. But no - we get a guy who changes moods and attitudes with all the consistency of a psychotic schizophrenic. It's just shitty writing, is all, and it smacks of the kind of atonal lack of assurance that RTD used to excel at when writing the Doctor.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:53 p.m. CST

    Straight people underepresented in Who?

    by foxthebloodied

    There have been like maybe ten characters referred to as gay over 4 years and it's the straight people who were under-represented? Yeah, whatever. I can't wait to see what your reaction will be if Moffat writes a gay character in any of his episodes... Oh and I did watch Torchwood and yeah it was patchy as hell but it was certainly better than shit like Primeval and Demons.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:55 p.m. CST

    Rhuragh - re Amy's choice

    by spud mcspud

    I think the reason it felt so jarringly atonal as well was that they didn't make much of Amy making the choice - she acted more confused and possibly brainwashed after making the choice than anything else. After watching it again, I was struck by two thoughts: (1) Did she choose to forget because if she were the one to tip it to 1%, she would be the one who caused the entire Spaceship UK to bdestroy itself, and (2) Was she subliminally brainwashed by the programming into choosing to Forget - thereby eliminating the idea of a choice at all, and just forcing her to hit Forget against her will? With the fast-cut editing of the message Amy watched, it seemed more like a subliminal kind of info-dump that could easily contain a message FORCING Amy to hit Forget than a proper expose of what was really happening that then relied on the person to make a REAL choice based on their own feelings. Not to mention - doesn't telling a person that their choice of Protest may be the vote that destroys what's left of the ENTIRE HUMAN RACE actually kind of influence them into NOT having a choice at all??<P> Either way, the doctor wasn't being fair. And for a 900+ year old alien who supposedly is one of the biggest fans of the human race, it just doesn't ring true.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:56 p.m. CST

    spud mcspud

    by Rhuragh

    But spud, that's _exactly what happens_. Rewatch the scene of the Doctor and Amy in front of the giant glass window. It's clear that the Doctor is still pissed at Amy and the rest of the ship's population, but he's also internally debating whether to continue traveling with Amy given that she did fix the problem in the end. I quote: <BR><BR>Amy, you could have killed everyone on this ship. <BR>You could have killed a star whale. <BR>And you saved it. I know, I know. (said not defensive or recalcitrant, but accepting and humbled). <BR><BR>While still disappointed with Amy, he knows she has hopefully learned her proverbial lesson and also knows that she caught something he didn't. (My other quibble with the episode is that the Doctor made it clear that he was the last of his kind, but didn't say anything about how old he was. I don't recall this being stated in the previous episode either, so I don't think Amy had any way of knowing that the Doctor isn't just lonely, but _old_ and lonely, as her dialogue suggests). Moffat didn't gloss over the Doctor's reaction, he wrote it perfectly.

  • April 11, 2010, 2:59 p.m. CST

    foxthebloodied - Moffat DID write in a gay character...

    by spud mcspud

    ...In THE EMPTY CHILD / THE DOCTOR DANCES, Moffat introduced Captain Jack Harkness. It was that rare occurence where Jack's sexuality was second to his original motivation for his actions in the episode (salvaging a Chula ambulance ship for sale later to the highest bidder), rather than have his entire existence seemingly ruled by his need to stick his dick in anything even vaguely shaped like a hole, as he was in TORCHWOOD. Because obviously a guy like that would be the first choice to head up the most secret last-line-of-defence-against-alien-threats organisation in existence, wouldn't he? Oh, wait...

  • April 11, 2010, 3:01 p.m. CST

    spud mcspud

    by Candy ass monkey suit

    Still, like many have said before me, a shit Moff episode is still better than an awesome RTD episode Completely disagree there. The Beast Below was ok but it wasn't better than Doomsday/Journeys End/Tooth and Claw/Christmas invasion etc. Was better than shit like New Earth,Fear Her though..even if RTD didnt write the latter. Moffats a good writer but i never rated The empty child at all..thought that ep was wildy overated. Blink and Girl in the fireplace were genius and silence in the library just ok for me.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:01 p.m. CST

    fox - Oooh! Another one!!

    by spud mcspud

    Remember the butcher in THE EMPTY CHILD?? His motivation was to be pissed off at Nancy for having the orphans steal all the food from his table - until Nancy cleverly turns the tables on him by revealing that he didn't in fact earn the food with "the sweat off his brow", but in fact got it as a kickback from his secret male lover? See how that works? The fact that he's gay is a DETAIL, NOT THE PRIME MOTIVATIONAL CHARACTER TRAIT!!<P> THAT is good writing. THAT is how you write gay characters in Who - as people with fully-rounded lives, for which being gay is just a part of it, not THE ONLY PART OF IT.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:04 p.m. CST

    Amy's vote alone wouldn't have destroyed the ship

    by Steve Rogers

    The dude said 1% of the population would need to protest. Unless there were only 100 people on board the massive gargantuan starship Amy's vote could only be cumulative - and indeed would only be the start of the process as it's pretty much stated that *everyone* has always chosen to forget.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:05 p.m. CST

    DC Films

    by Candy ass monkey suit

    Have you seen an old Who ep recently? A lot of the old series was fuckin retarted..especially the shit colin baker and mc coy yrs. the episodes were dreadful..i don't know how mc coys doctor battling an alien replica of bertie bassett could be constrood as adult tv ! There were some good stories like the brilliant Genesis of the daleks..still one of whos best ep's but a lot of it now is so stupid as not to be taken seriosly in the slightest!

  • April 11, 2010, 3:06 p.m. CST

    Rhuragh - I see what you're saying...

    by spud mcspud

    ...I'm just not sure it's all there in the episode, it might be that you're attributing most of it (though he DOES seem to be accepting that Amy is smarter and more caring than he'd first thought in the way he says "I know, I know"). I don't expect Moffat to give us all exposition and no silences - we need to have SOME gaps to fill in, after all! - but a little less ambiguity would be useful.<P> I vaguely recollect the Doctor mentioning how old he is in the first ep, but can't remember where - if I get chance to rewatch it in the next few days, I'll let you know!!

  • April 11, 2010, 3:08 p.m. CST

    spud - speaking of gay characters?

    by Steve Rogers

    Didn't you complain after Waters Of Mars about the throwaway reference on the tele-link to the gay bloke back on Earth? HIS motivation in the scene was to speak to his brother who was out in space doing a dangerous job, the gay thing was a pure bit of additional bumph. But in that instance the gayness was being gartuitously shoe-horned in, right? Whereas if a writer we like sticks it in, it's just a fun story detail? <p> If I'm wrong and you didn't actually complain about the oh-shit-gay-agenda-again in WoM then apologies.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:10 p.m. CST

    spud mcspud

    by gotilk

    Original point missed. Go back and read it again. The fact that you reacted to it suggests to me that ALTHOUGH I wouldn't label you as someone who throws stupid, lame, not-well-thought-out criticisms toward RTD, perhaps you fear that in fact you do. I don't remember addressing the post to you, but you reacted as if you were the target. I think there's a term for that. Something better than and more than "hitting a nerve". Bah, maybe I'm wasting my time on you. Good day. Enjoy your fantasies.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:16 p.m. CST

    Has anyone here ever read a post and..

    by gotilk

    thought "hey, that person means ME!", when in fact your name was never mentioned? If so... you might want to get that checked out by a professional.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:19 p.m. CST

    spud mcspud - re Amy's choice

    by Rhuragh

    My impression is that Amy had a genuine choice there. As the Doctor noted, they were living in a police state enforced by the Smilers. If the Government had no interest in giving them a real choice, why pretend to offer a fake choice at all? Particularly with the presence of the forget button. If your choice has no effect anyway, and they wipe the fake choice from your memory, why bother providing the fake choice in the first place? A fake choice would serve only to _perpetuate the illusion_ of democracy. If you've forgotten the choice, and even the dilemma that spawned the choice, in the first place, there's no point to offering the false choice. I also imagine that she was candidly informed about the star whale, and that the ship would stop running if it were freed, with doom for the humans as a likely result. Informed consent, and all. I do not, however, imagine that potential dissenters are told that they'd be whale food if they dissented. That seems like something even a charitable totalitarian political establishment would keep hidden. Getting rid of the dissenters to avoid having their malcontent spread is logical. You wouldn't inform them of this, of course. To do so would encourage them to simply hit forget, and hope that they could survive to relearn the truth and possibly spread their knowledge and foment revolt later. <BR><BR>Oh, one more thing. This episode also establishes that other nations had their own ships, and that the UK was simply one ship among many. Yet everyone assumes that the death of this ship means the death of the human race, including the Doctor. If I were the Doctor making this choice, I'd be weighing a not-insignificant portion, but by no means all, of humanity versus the _last_ of the star whales. The star whale would win that equation, I think.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:23 p.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    I've been pilloried by pretty much every RTD defender on these WHO TBs since "Rose" got shown back in 2005. Yep, most of the "You hate RTD so you must be a slef-loathing closeted gay guy" shit has been thrown at me in lieu of a REAL argument for the last five years. Excuse me for thinking that the latest person to throw that witless argument out is aiming it at me. <P> I'd settle for a decent debate on the subject myself, but I'm resigned to end up with guys like you popping up every so often to say "You only hate RTD 'cos you're secretly GAY!!" then running off into the shadows, giggling to yourself about how fucking witty you are.<P> As for well-thought out criticisms of RTD's writing - perhaps you don't think anyone's criticisms against RTD's writing are well-thought out because you are so in awe of the man and his writing style, that you think he's above criticism? Or do you in fact think he's really that good a writer?<P> Either way, I have five years worth of explanations about how shit RTD's writing is - and crucially, many, many well-reasoned and discussed arguments supporting my point of view. If you can be bothered, go and read them all. I really don't have the time to rehash it all again.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:27 p.m. CST

    Episiode 2

    by 2LeggedFreak

    I still like Matt Smiths Doc a lot and Amy gets better and better.<br /><br />Felt that the story was crammed into 45 minutes and the little uns may have found it a little complex to hang onto.<br /><br />Story felt somewhat of a rehash of other sci-fi themes but I liked several aspects very much:<br /><br />Gun toting Liz 10<br /><br />Doctors quips ("we're looking for an escaped fish")<br /><br />The spooky smilers -another image for the little uns to cherish.<br /><br />The vote/forget buttons and Amy's video...all eminently understandable but only with a little thought...programmes that make you think..whatever next.<br /><br />On a slightly more grown up and nit picky level:<br /><br />When the Doctor shows Amy Space-ship UK at the beginning he speaks with a lot of authority about it..seems odd with him knowing so much that he misses the fact its sat on the back of a fucking big alien.<br /><br />Whilst I understand why they did it I didn't quite buy into the juxtoposition of Amy saving the creature because the Doctor missed it.<br /><br />I'm being overly greedy here and maybe 40+ years of watching Doctor who means nothing will ever surprise me again but despite a new Doctor we seem to be in very familiar story territory very quickly. Doesn't feel very fresh and exciting to me at the moment outside of the new dynamic duo.<br /><br />Liked the hug at the end...this is a heck of a team thats being built here and hopefully that'll help us through some of the story shortcomings.

  • April 11, 2010, 3:35 p.m. CST

    As always, the perpetual outsider...

    by Rhuragh

    ...and this time in the fallacy of the excluded middle: I hate RTD's writing, specifically due to all the deus ex machinas, however, I have absolutely no problem with how references to gay people were incorporated into the show. As I'm sure dismays some of you, _gay people actually do exist!_ Probably between ten to twenty percent of us, actually! Most aren't openly gay. Most are probably in denial. But yes, they do exist. Incorporating them into our entertainment isn't surprising. They're just another extremely underrepresented minority finally getting a few seconds in the very very lily-white spotlight.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:09 p.m. CST

    Anyone also note how the "big button push" also solved tonight's

    by Steve Rogers

  • April 11, 2010, 4:09 p.m. CST

    Anyone also note how the "big button push" also solved tonight's

    by Steve Rogers

  • April 11, 2010, 4:10 p.m. CST

    Damn double posts!

    by Steve Rogers

    I *meant* to say - Anyone also note how the "big button push" also solved the problem in this episode? Man I would LOVE Moffat to do an experiment and stick out one of HIS episodes with RTD's name on. See how apeshit the dipshits can go.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:18 p.m. CST

    by zeppp42

    I was wondering the same thing...if the space whale was the same type of creature in the Torchwood ep Meat. I also was wondering why the Doctor and Amy were not shot out into space when the whale puked...I rationalized to myself that there was a room connected to the whale when it was a prisoner but when Liz 10 abdicated and the shackles were thrown off, so to speak, that room was ejected out into space.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:21 p.m. CST

    Great episode

    by ominus

    Matt Smith is the best Doctor since the Tom Baker era.And amy pond is great,i love her chemistry with the Dr.<br /><br /><p>The only thing i dislike with the new series is the new music theme and intro of the series.They suck.<br /><br /><p>Now Moffat is a better writer than Davis,that is pretty obvious.But it seems that he is forced to use the formula that Davis established for the success of the series: Love interest between the Dr and his companion,Daleks and the dominant UK setting.And this thing will disappoint the fans who expected something new and refreshing from Moffat.<br /><br /><p>And anotehr thing: is it only me or it seems that the budget for the new series,has been reduced a lot? i find the quality of the vfx and sceneries of the new episodes very poor compared to the ones of the past

  • April 11, 2010, 4:36 p.m. CST


    by Rhuragh

    As was hinted above a bit, the coming elections in the UK will almost certainly end up with the Conservative Tories on top (around 40% of the vote, probably). Labor and the Liberal Democrats will still have more, but they'd have to build a coalition to do it. Assuming the Tories form a minority government, it is widely anticipated that they are going to gut funding for the Beeb. The BBC has already started cutting their budget in anticipation of these cuts. Apparently the FX budget on Doctor Who has fallen victim to this. <BR><BR>I do not see that the Amy/Doctor relationship is becoming romantic. We're only two episodes in though, but so far it looks more like they're just going to become very close friends. Judging from the spoilers I've read for future episodes I don't think they're going to go the romance angle either.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:37 p.m. CST

    Oh, British politics...

    by Rhuragh

    BTW, I'm an ignorant amurkan, so I may be misinterpreting or misunderstanding the current situation in British politics. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

  • April 11, 2010, 4:45 p.m. CST

    Steve Rogers

    by Rhuragh

    You have missed the point completely. The criticisms levied at RTD are due to the fact that nearly every episode he wrote, and a vast number of the ones he even simply edited, resulted in the Doctor having a last second epiphany whereupon a few seconds with the Sonic Screwdriver, a few spare bits of electronics, cables, and hoses, and about thirty seconds of expository technobabble was the go-to resolution for any and every dilemma encountered in the story. Those of us who are half-way literate know that the Doctor is based on Sherlock Holmes. In classic Holmes stories, indeed, in classic mysteries, all of the clues to solve the problem are given earlier in the plot. The genius of the character is due to the fact that he figures out the problem before the audience does. In the RTD era, this was seldom the case. A bunch of shit was thrown at the screen, and then the Doctor deus ex machina'ed up a solution at the last second. While, as I noted above, technically the solution in The Beast Below involves pressing a button, the reasoning behind that is clearly established due to clues laid earlier in the episode. The solution doesn't just come out of nowhere, information regarding the eventual solution is established through character bits going back to the first scene after the opening credits. That's logical plotting and characterization, not deus ex machina.

  • April 11, 2010, 5:08 p.m. CST

    the irish have had coalition govts since..

    by emeraldboy

    1989 or later. here is a cast iron warning for the british. if the lib dems hold the balance of power and start spouting the watchdog rubbish, do not believe a f*cking word of it. fianna fail and its ministers have been part of the same govt for the best part of 13 years from 1997-2007. we had an election in 2007 and the "watchdog party" the pds were subsumed into Fianna fail. when things started to go wrong and fianna fail ran the country into the ground with connivince of seanie and the board of anglo. the govt needed a whipping boy and the pds were litterally hung out to dry and were destroyed. in 2007 ff concocted a secret deal with the greens. and the green activists did not know about it. the irish people only found about that deal two months ago. when the cabinet reshuffled that wasnt happened. the greens wanted to rotate thier ministers. what is happening in ireland is about to happen in the uk. any uk politician who says the uk is prosperous is bullshit artist. About a week the irish people saw what one man did to the irish economy, seanie. one word described it all. catastrophic.

  • April 11, 2010, 5:09 p.m. CST

    To be fair about the Doctor and Holmes

    by ganda1f

    In many Holmes stories Sherlock would pull many (previously unmentioned) details seemingly out of thin air to support his conclusion. The best stories introduced the pivotal evidence early on, but many did not.<br><br>That said, as average as this episode was(and it *was* pretty mediocre, IMHO), I appreciated the fact that they didn't resolve it with a bit of manic speaking and a sonic screwdriver.<br><br> (BTW: I still have traumatic flashbacks to DoctorDonna. *Shudder*. Never have I seen such great setup ruined by an ending so terrible.)

  • April 11, 2010, 5:16 p.m. CST

    Well About This Episode.........

    by Real Deal

    Let me just begin by saying I agree with the people who are saying Matt Smith may be the best Doctor since Baker. And Gillian follows as possibly one of the best companions in a long time. I loved their chemistry at the end of the first episode. It was a bit like a fairy tale. It really warmed my heart to watch it! Moffat seems to have the correct idea when it comes to what DW need s to be great ( what clicks and what doesn't ). However this episode was a bit of a let down. It had some great ideas, sentiments, and acting by Smith and Gillian but it was wrapped around a weak ( and slightly silly ) premise. I don't have a problem with the idea that earth has to evacuate when the Sun acts up. I still enjoy that old Baker episode about The Arc in Space. But this episode had some silly elements to it that were barely held together by logic ( that have been already mentioned by others here ). DW by it's nature is whimsical and it is part of it's charm. However if Moffat wants the Doctor to be great I think I'd stay away from this kind of episode which was a little like the one with the Titanic. One of the weakest xmas specials. I did like the fact that Amy came up with the solution before the Doctor. I also liked the fact that it seemed to draw them closer with a greater respect for each other. Like I said great moments and ideas wrapped around a weak episode. If this had those elements in connection with a great episode just think how much more important those moments might have seemed. But when alls said in done didn't hate it.

  • April 11, 2010, 5:17 p.m. CST

    I enjoyed it more 2nd time around.

    by Smashing

    Though it is still worrying that the second episode wasn't a winner, really with only 13 a year they could try harder. Plus is it me or do all Moffs stories have a very similar vibe? like he is reusing the same elements again and again?

  • April 11, 2010, 5:33 p.m. CST

    Spud kids make blow job jokes all the time.

    by Smashing

    I think you're just so old you forget and think of them as tiny angels when in reality there sex addicted, happy slapping killers in waiting.

  • April 11, 2010, 5:41 p.m. CST

    Smashing - Agreed about me being old ;D

    by spud mcspud

    Yeah, agreed, but then kids stab each other all the time too - doesn't mean that belongs in a prime-time kids TV show, though...<P> Plus... EWWW!! She was a paving slab!!!

  • April 11, 2010, 5:43 p.m. CST

    Also enjoyed it 2nd time round

    by spud mcspud

    I'm finding that Moff is a bit over-fond of the old expository speeches, and also the whole episode revolving around gigantic buttons that can solve the entire problem in one big push...<P> I still think he'd have a long way to fall ot be anywhere near as bad a writer as RTD, but he's definitely below par for THE BEAST BELOW. I have very high hopes for next weeks, VICTORY OF THE DALEKS though - and it's a Mark Gatiss ep too!!!

  • April 11, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST

    For those who think I hate gay writers...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Mark Gatiss is yet to put a foot wrong with WHO. I enjoyed ALL his eps so far. So it's not the orientation then...

  • April 11, 2010, 6:04 p.m. CST

    Mark Gatiss is gay?

    by Smashing

    He was quite rude to me once, so was Simon Pegg so maybe it is me?

  • April 11, 2010, 6:31 p.m. CST

    oh and speaking of twilight..

    by emeraldboy

    worrying rumours are flying all over the place that a major star associated with twilight is about to be cast as an iconic rocker who died in the 1990s. This dead iconic rockers wife has been making money out of him ever since.

  • April 11, 2010, 7:37 p.m. CST

    Am I the only one...

    by DuncanDisorderly

    <p>...who saw a "crack" in the side of the Spaceship UK at the end of the episode?<p> <p>It looked similar to the crack in Amy's wall in the first episode and so I was wondering if maybe there was a connection?<p>

  • April 11, 2010, 7:40 p.m. CST

    DuncanDisorderly (RE: The crack)...

    by MisterE

    DuncanDisorderly, either one of the reviews or one of the earlier Talkback posters mentioned it. The crack also appeared as one of the waveforms on the oscilloscope in the TARDIS at the end of last week's episode.

  • April 11, 2010, 7:54 p.m. CST

    spud mcspud

    by gotilk

    Did you hear a slight whoosh from above? Honestly, truly go back and read what I wrote. If the shoe fits, fine. But the fact remains I botb liked parts of and had criticisms of part of RTD's run. The people who go around spouting off about his "agenda" raise flags, that's all I'm really saying. I thought with a bit of fun. No, I'm sure with a bit of fun. You really shouldn't have assumed I meant you. But if you go around the Internets calling everyone who disagrees with you (even indirectly) a troll or an idiot, then.. well.. as they say "when you fight on the Internet, you're.. something something.. running with mongoloids.. something something" or however it goes. Cheers. Didn't mean any harm by it. At least not harm directed at anyone in particular. As a matter of fact, I've read comments about current and past Who in many, many more places than this wretched hive of scum and basementry.

  • April 11, 2010, 8:01 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I noticed that, too. It's absolutely a foreshadowing. I gotta say, I have not been this excited about a show since the first season of Lost. Or when I discovered The Prisoner(original). I did have high Moffat expectations, and they've been met. I'm just happy I'm not the only one. <br><br> Oh and Kristen Stewart (or is it Kirsten? I can't be bothered to check) would make a great Kurt Cobain. Is she seriously being considered, or are they going with the other girl that's a vampire?

  • April 11, 2010, 8:37 p.m. CST

    The reason the Doctor is mad at Amy

    by offscauta

    A few people seem to have missed why the Doctor is mad at Amy. It's not about what has been done to the whale. When the whale is revealed, Amy asks the Doctor, "Why would I choose to forget this?" and the Doctor replies that she was trying to spare him the dilema of dealing with the situation. He then says to her, "You never decide what I need to know." He's pissed off because she's kept things from him.

  • April 12, 2010, 1 a.m. CST

    Speaking of Sherlock Holmes

    by rosasaks

    Hugh Laurie would make a good Doctor :-)

  • April 12, 2010, 1:29 a.m. CST

    Star Wars Hommage Anyone?

    by durmer killik

    You are are only hope. The Queen wearing Jedi robes. Sliding into a ships refuse bin. Inside a monster with the tongue for a floor. Standing in front of a star field at the end of the episode with the same wipe effect. Or was I just drunk?

  • April 12, 2010, 2:43 a.m. CST

    RTD gone & forgotten

    by nobbythehappyelf

    In all honesty I have enjoyed the first two episodes of the "New Who" for more than the RTD era. The camp cheesey subtext and gay propaganda of RTD has been replaced with genuine excitement and could hopefully be a return to vintage Who scares. DT was a fantastic Doctor - but the whole Torchwood/Capt Jack travesty was utter bollocks. Here's to the new team! Keep up the good work! BTW I haven't seen any Caprica yet - worth it or not?

  • April 12, 2010, 3:52 a.m. CST


    by Rhuragh

    That's because he already _IS_ playing Sherlock Holmes. It should be blatantly obvious. House. Holmes. Wilson. Watson. The address on his apartment is even 221B.

  • April 12, 2010, 4 a.m. CST

    The cracks start to appear

    by Madmarek

    Does Amy Pond wear knickers under her nightie? Well after the first few minutes of The Beast Below the Doctor found out using the old, “Do you want to float outside my TARDIS is space for a bit?” routine lol. I liked this episode overall but not as much as last weeks. The concept was huge and took a lot of guts to do but it wasn’t quite up to the BBC’s budget in parts. I loved the mechanical/biological Smilers, there were really creepy. I also like the idea of a UK in space even though it was blatantly influenced by Terry Pratchett and ST – TNG. However as the episode progressed the cracks started to appear and not just the one we saw. Amy’s wide-eyed reaction to practically anything is already starting to wear a little thin, as is the Doctor’s tendency to lean in close to everyone for a random few seconds and then move off leaving them confused and startled. They need to be careful they both don’t end up using the exact same mannerisms. As in most films and TV programs the weakest part was the third act. The Doctor has gone to great lengths to inform us he is a keen observer. We saw in The Eleventh Hour he has the ability to replay events in his mind from several different angles and he noticed in The Beast Below the ‘ship’ wasn’t moving by any engine yet he failed to notice the children ‘playing’ with the bad CGI tentacles and put two and two together. It took Amy to do this and seemed simply a badly written tool to wrangle some tension and emotion out of the episode but it simply made no sense. Nor did it make any sense that the Star Whale wouldn’t have gone literally insane with the decades of torture, it seemed quite happy actually lol. I’m also surprised no-one else isn’t getting a massive sense of Deja-Vu. If you look at RTD’s first season with Eccleston we had Episode 1 “Rose” – Where the Doctor is in a race against time to stop the destruction of all humans on Earth. Episode 2 “The End of the World” – Set in a space station in the future where the Earth has been abandoned and is due to be destroyed by the sun. Also In both episodes we’d encountered several references to ‘Bad Wolf’ which had us all intrigued. Moffat may have written some of the best Who episodes but he’s also ‘borrowing’ heavily from all sorts of Fantasy and Sci-Fi references and pretty much cut & pasting the formula from RTD first season of Who! So what next? An episode set in WWII with Daleks. Will that be a mix of Dalek and the Empty Child? If this had been a RTD episode the homophobic talkbackers would be up in arms lol!

  • April 12, 2010, 4:42 a.m. CST

    speaking of British politics..

    by emeraldboy

    I have read an article in the observer about cameron and the tory party links, which he and william Hague fostered to a far -right wing polish party called the polish law and justice party. these are apparently very homophobic and nationalisitc people. a report was done up warning the tories about this party and it has been ignored. one its senior members was killed in a plan crash, notably the polish president.

  • April 12, 2010, 4:45 a.m. CST


    by emeraldboy

    you all need to take breath. cause when i mention this this place is gonna. the actor in question to play Kurt Cobain is R-pattz.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:03 a.m. CST

    I've been badmouthing this show for ages...

    by Mr Gorilla

    ...But i saw this ep and it was a MASSIVE improvement on the last one. My one feeling is that it would have worked better as a two parter. It was like a movie where Act 2 was the shortest act of all.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:47 a.m. CST

    Plot hole! (spoiler)

    by 1st and only

    frying a whale(even a space whale)'s brain over and over would cripple it, not somehow magically convince it to keep on going regardless...for decades. Stupid. At some point the torturing would have stopped momentarilly then suddenly the whale would have increased speed(as what immediately happens) and everybody would have realised their brainlessness. BIG plot hole. Still, its the 1st watchable Dr Who series since Peter Davidson in my opinion...yup, gave up on every Dr Who since then, although i always watch the first few to give it a go. And thank the time lord Catherine Tate has, she was beyond awful and the scariest creature the show has ever put on screen.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:52 a.m. CST

    1st and only

    by jacksparness

    so, you know a lot of space whales then?

  • April 12, 2010, 6:19 a.m. CST

    spud mcspud gets my vote.

    by chronicallydepressedlemming

    He consistantly voices my opinions about RTD vs Moffat, ham-fisted gay agenda included. I still can't believe RTD apologists are using the same tired old arguments that have been knocked down years ago. Again, ITS NOT THAT THERE ARE GAY CHARACTERS. ITS THE FACT THEY BROADCAST THEIR SEXUALLITY FOR NO REASON. For the record I watch this show quite often with my gay cousin and his fiancee, and it also irritates the fuck out of them too. But hey, don't let logic get in the way of your homophobe-hangings.

  • April 12, 2010, 6:29 a.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    Usually I'm quite good at spotting the sense of humour if it's there, so for some reason I haven't noticed it in your posts. Sense of humour failure on my part, then. If you're just having a bit of fun, I apologise for being a bit arsey :D<P> That said.... I DID hear a whooshing sound above my head...

  • April 12, 2010, 6:38 a.m. CST

    Smashing - Don't doubt yourself!!

    by spud mcspud

    The difference between you and those two - unless you're actually someone famous in diguise - would be that you're famous and they aren't. Fame inevitably turns even the nicest person into a self-obssessed egomaniacal twat, those two probably not excepted. I'm surprised at Gatiss, who seems very accommodating and pleasant in all the LEAGUE OF GENTLEMEN behind the scenes stuff, so I am surprised. Pegg recently became the God Of All Geeks (except AsiLives, obviously) playing Scotty in STAR TREK, so I'm NOT surproised he's now a wanker. Especially since he worked with Tom Cruise in MI:III. And you've never been less than a gent even when we were tearing strips off each other in these TBS in the last few years of RTD's reign, so I REFUSE to believe it's you.<P> My very few brushes with fame have led me to think most - not all - famous people are arseholes. Take Jordan, who I met at an autograph signing (it was fre, I sold it on eBay a week later - don't judge me!). The kid in front of me, some 12 or 13 year old, was literally shaking with excitement at getting to meet the object of his affection. After she signed the autograph, she giggled to her minder, "He's gonna go and wank over that lay-TAR!!". What class, what absolute class.<P> I also got to be an extra on a movie back in 1994 starring Embeth Davidtz, James Purefoy, Ben Chaplin, Gemma Jones, Tom Bell and a few others. Embeth was stand-offish, but understandably so, as she was filming the last scene of the movie where she was mourning the imminent death of her beloved, who was being hanged for defending her honour by killing a guy who raped her. Fair dos - that's a heavy scene, she doesn't want bothering by star-struck extras. Purefoy was an absolute class act, chatting with the extras and saying hi, and Gemma Jones couldn't be nicer - pointing us all to the free tea and doughnuts services, asking if we were all enjoying ourselves, etc. Ditto Tom Bell and the others (Ben Chaplin wasn't there, unfortunately, but I'm told he's a gent as well). So in my limited experience, the ones on the way up the fame ladder, or those who've lived their whole lives doing great work but not mega-famous for it, tend to be okay - it's those who are ridiculously famous and think it gives them the chance to behave like twats that I cannot stand.<P> Commence bitching stories about stars behaviong like twats, people!

  • April 12, 2010, 6:41 a.m. CST

    chronicallydepressedlemming - well said

    by spud mcspud

    You don't hear me slagging off QUEER AS FOLK, because it WAS well written - and a very informative look into a slice of life I've never seen before. But his WHO work always seemed agenda led, and I've always felt that a moral or a piece of advice should lie WITHIN the confines of a story - not stick out of said story like a very sore thumb. Basically, RTD can't write SF without shoving HIS prejudices and opinions front and centre, above story, narrative or character development - which is sub-amateur writing at best. He should stick to writing real drama about real people, which he is far stronger at than his sub-standard SF writing.

  • April 12, 2010, 6:54 a.m. CST

    For those wanting to hate the famous...

    by spud mcspud

    ...And Steven Moffat or Jay-Z in particular, you should read LAWRENCE MILES' DOCTOR WHO THING, his blog about the WHOniverse and the people in it. Lawrence created the Faction paradox spin-off from WHO and has written several New Adventures, and other bits and pieces. He's been slagged off or insulted by Moffat many times, and almost attacked by Jay-Z's bodyguard, and while you get the impression it's mostly all his own fault (because he does come across as over-pedantic, pernickety, awkward, sometime rude and mostly hard to get along with) it's still very entertaining reading. And if there's any truth that Moffat insulted Lawrence over his purchase of THE COMPLETE BAGPUSS - well, FUCK YOU MOFFAT!! You may be writing some quality WHO, but never- NEVER!! - go after the work of Oliver Postgate! Your output thus far on children's TV isn't fit to lick the boots of the Great Postgate Legacy, you twat!!<P>

  • April 12, 2010, 6:55 a.m. CST


    by Candy ass monkey suit

    I don't know how anyone can criticise the new intro! the vortex looks 1000 times better than thecheap pc version used in RTD era who. Thetheme im on the fence the epic first few bars that builds into the main theme but i prefer the old one overall.

  • April 12, 2010, 6:55 a.m. CST

    Smashing - Intentional error ahoy!

    by spud mcspud

    "You're famous and they aren't" - OBVIOUSLY I meant "THEY'RE famous and YOU aren't". Sorry 'bout that. Unless you are famous, in which case I'll get me coat.

  • April 12, 2010, 9:51 a.m. CST

    oh and another thing...

    by Madmarek

    This is the second episode in a row now where there has been no deaths and the bad guy simply just stands there looking menacing. The Smilers were psychologically sinister but there didn't actually hurt anyone, just like Prisoner Zero! Loved the fish joke though, very Tom Baker! :)

  • April 12, 2010, 9:57 a.m. CST

    The Doctor is Simply Too Powerful.

    by DarfurOnTheRocks2

    Much like Superman, I feel that the Doctor is most interesting when he is not Omnipotent. I am old Skool and loved it when the Doctor would be reigned in by the Timelords. I know that they are "locked", but in the pantheon of Whoverse we have the Guardians and other powerful beings that could serve to depower the Doctor.... What does anyone else think?

  • April 12, 2010, 10:26 a.m. CST

    Spud cheers, I'm (sadly) not famous.

    by Smashing

    I always wanted to be but alas I have zero appreciable talent, however I did used to read the news on BBC radio but alas doing live radio stoned and wanking in the office are frowned upon at the BBC for some petty reason.<P>I need sympathy too, on Friday I sliped with a q-tip in my left ear and perforated my ear drum, I'm half deaf and it is driving me mad, my ear keeps bleeding, the pain is shitty and I talk funny now, I hope it isn't permanent, my doc thinks not but he looked about 10 too.

  • April 12, 2010, 10:57 a.m. CST

    @Smashing - Perforated ear drums can heal

    by V'Shael

    quite easily on their own. I wouldn't worry about it. Just make sure you don't get an infection there.

  • April 12, 2010, 11:04 a.m. CST

    without Tennant the viewing figures are dipping !

    by Candy ass monkey suit

    The Beast Below avearged around 6.7m viewrs on sat. Down from last weeks 7-8mill for the eleventh hour. The series so far is easily down on Tennants era on who..especially the more recent yrs.

  • April 12, 2010, 1:51 p.m. CST


    by 2LeggedFreak

    Thanks for the link....quite a funny blog.<br /><br />Liked the Cyberman used gold advert: "Gold prices are at an all-time high. Do you have gold jewellery you no longer need? We'll give you cash for it, no questions asked. At, we just... we just want to take it away from you. Please."<br /><br />Doesn't like Mr Moffatt much does he ? Lol.

  • April 12, 2010, 2:11 p.m. CST

    durmer killik, Thanks and River Song.

    by Jayemel

    durmer killik, I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed that. The "you're our only hope" line was so obvious. <p> Also, I expected the woman behind the mask to be River Song. Now I expect Moffat to be teasing that reveal all season. Now I'm leaning towards him having an intricate overall plan that will make us reconsider these episodes.

  • April 12, 2010, 2:27 p.m. CST

    Fear not Gabba-UK

    by Octavian

    The BBC is beyond Murdoch and the Tories. It is untouchable. It's amongst our finest national institutions. It may need to trim some of its non-programming extravagances, but it exists on pubic money and should do so as a matter of course.

  • April 12, 2010, 3 p.m. CST

    This episode definitely re-establishes this as a kids' show..

    by AnnoyYou

    But are today's kids actually watching DW? I don't think so - not even in the UK. RTD had the right idea: market this show to adults. The mighty tween market probably thinks the homely 27-year-old Matt Smith is an "old guy," and let's forget about his ripe companion. I think this is a misstep on Moffat's part - if he really wanted a successful 2010 kids' series, the Doctor should have been played by someone like Alex Pettyfer or Commonwealth boy Justin Bieber [ICK]. Sad but true.

  • April 12, 2010, 3:03 p.m. CST

    It did occur to me...

    by 2LeggedFreak

    ..that the Doctor may have been testing Amy in this episode.<br /><br />Maybe I am justifying the fact that she solved the problem not him but I still think a freaking great alien underneath the city would have been hard for the Doctor not to know about..he seemed to know a fair bit about the place.

  • April 12, 2010, 3:08 p.m. CST

    Crack/Not a Crack...

    by Hagakure

    ...We know that River is going to be making an appearance this season, and everyone is waiting for some kind of "connection" between Amy Pond and River Song...anyone else get the feeling that the reoccuring "crack" is not actually a crack but will somehow be a "river" when laid down on a map somewhere? (For some reason, I am thinking of that "Smallville" bluff, when a map turned out to be a tree.) Just a thought. But maybe I am just reaching?

  • April 12, 2010, 3:27 p.m. CST


    by Hairy Nutsack

    That's a good point actually. The Doctor knew all about the how's and why's of the UK spaceship except for how they got into to space to begin with? The Doctor has an encyclopeadic knowledge of history, the "engine" of spaceship UK isn't something he's likely to forget methinks.

  • April 12, 2010, 3:28 p.m. CST

    Mister E and gotlik...

    by DuncanDisorderly

    <p>Thanks for the clarification, guys. I thought it may just have been me reading too much into it.<p> <p>I'm glad that for once I was actually paying attention.<p>

  • April 12, 2010, 3:29 p.m. CST

    The virgin queen thing...

    by Hairy Nutsack

    Why is this being mentioned again, and in such a short period of time? Did someone on the writer's staff fall in love with their own joke or what?

  • April 12, 2010, 3:51 p.m. CST

    Smashing - WHAAAAAAAT??

    by spud mcspud

    Wanking in the office is frowned upon? On the Jonathan ross show, that'd be the highlight of a weekend brainstorming session. I'm fucking amazed you're not on the Board of Directors yet!!<P> Get well soon, mate. I have trouble with my ears too (had to have grommits at 14 yrs old and had trouble ever since) but not on that level. Hope it clears up soon.

  • April 12, 2010, 3:53 p.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    ...Interesting theory. Would also explain why he got over the being-mad-at-all-humans thing so quickly too, and for that heistant "thank you" at the end of the episode.<P> Hope you and Rhuragh do some regular reviews for the rest of this season. You've both got a gift for finding some unusual perspectives on new WHO, which I'm pretty sure we all appreciate :D

  • April 12, 2010, 3:56 p.m. CST

    Watched it again..well you've got to haven't you ?

    by 2LeggedFreak

    2nd time around it didn't feel as rushed as I had more time to absorbe it. I think it stood up well to a second viewing although still nothing earth-shattering...the performances of the Doctor and Amy were top notch though.<br /><br />Some interesting things in there...I liked the way Smiths Doctor can calmly talk about being the last of his race without going OTT ---"it was a bad day!. Be interesting to see how he gets on with the Daleks, maybe a few regenerations have a pyschological healing factor.<br /><br />Can't say I am bothered if they went for a Harry Potter/ Twilight kind of approach in appointing Matt Smith because for me :1) Smith works 2) A decent Dr Who story is nothing like the simplistic HP nonsense. In a sort of back handed compliment of a rebuttal I think that if somebody was going to go down the route of casting for a mass market appeal they might have picked somebody more normal looking !!!.<br /><br />Didn't see any evidence for my theory the Doctor was testing Amy but what the heck!!<br /><br /><br /><br />

  • April 12, 2010, 3:59 p.m. CST


    by 2LeggedFreak

    Aw Shucks..thanks.<br /><br />If I get too geeky though, you have my permission to shoot me.

  • April 12, 2010, 4:02 p.m. CST

    Annoy You

    by 2LeggedFreak

    Interestingly though, my 16 year old who glanced briefly at the previous versions and then paid no attention, has watched both the Smith episodes and called him "quality".<br /><br />Could of course be the Amy content..the naught lad !!!

  • April 12, 2010, 4:26 p.m. CST


    by Zorba_the_geek

    Is it me, or does Matt Smith sound like Oliver Postgate, particularly during his quieter moments of exposition?

  • April 12, 2010, 4:33 p.m. CST

    2LeggedFreak... also watched it again

    by Zorba_the_geek

    Agree 100%. Initially thought it was rushed, but this time it just seemed succinct. Not a word or line wasted.

  • April 12, 2010, 4:35 p.m. CST

    Doctor testing Amy theory

    by Zorba_the_geek

    = bollox, though... sorry

  • April 12, 2010, 4:43 p.m. CST

    Timelines must be maintained...

    by Zorba_the_geek

    Until the Doctor & Amy intervened, the UK got wherever it was going by torturing the space whale with Liz Ten continually forgetting her way throughout. Once at whatever destination, the whale would be killed or sent on its way, then all evidence would have been destroyed and the memories of those in the know wiped. Or was that yet another episode of TNG?

  • April 12, 2010, 4:45 p.m. CST

    No history...

    by Zorba_the_geek

    So how could the Doctor know about it? The 'hesitant' thank you was just him being humble, IMO.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:14 p.m. CST

    A rather enjoyable episode

    by TinSpider

    .. the only negative being the over dramatic score(again). <br> I did find it odd that a ship housing all the inhabitants of the UK (minus Scotland) would have a stall in the market bit selling british souvenirs..

  • April 12, 2010, 5:38 p.m. CST

    Moffat's disgraceful agenda

    by scottishagenda

    I'm sick of Moffat using Doctor Who to push his Scottish agenda. Every episode of this series he's rammed Scottish characters and comments down our throats. I don't have a problem with Scottish people, don't get me wrong, but they have no place in Sci-fi. I've even heard there might be some Scottish kissing scenes later in the series. This is supposed to be a kid's show! And before people accuse me of being a Scotophobe, I have Scottish friends and cousins and they agree that the non-stop references to Scottish things in Doctor Who are annoying and inappropriate. We get it, Moffat, you're Scottish, no-one cares, now stop going on about it. After all, remember that less than 10% of the population are Scottish, so they're completely over represented in Doctor Who.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:43 p.m. CST

    And just to be clear...

    by scottishagenda

    It's not that there are Scottish characters, it's the fact that they broadcast their Scottishness for no reason.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:54 p.m. CST

    V'Shael it's already infected.

    by Smashing

    I am on antibiotics now too, I stuck my finger in there after I did it and blew cig smoke out of it too, it burned so bad.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:54 p.m. CST


    by Pogue__Mahone

    You almost owed me a few Canadian Dollars for a new keyboard as I almost spat my glass of water all over it! Well done, sir! Hands down the funniest thing I've read on this site in ages!!!

  • April 12, 2010, 5:55 p.m. CST

    Smashing's Ear

    by Pogue__Mahone

    Let's all pitch in and get him a bionic one like Jamie Summers. get better soon, man.

  • April 12, 2010, 5:58 p.m. CST

    Matt Smith

    by Pogue__Mahone

    Doctor Who has become a MOnday night ritual for me and my gang every week at my place. They're all en route now with a few cans of beer and a need to be entertained. We're all unanomously loving Matt and Karen - but I'm educating them on their Who Lore by watching a few old episodes every week too. They all love Tennant and Baker's been a big hit!

  • April 12, 2010, 6:09 p.m. CST

    If there is a Scottish Agenda...

    by Hairy Nutsack

    ...and it continues on and on then I will get pretty annoyed with that actually. I hate any writer that has to grind out his personal issues out of context with the material at hand.

  • April 12, 2010, 6:26 p.m. CST

    criticisms about Torchwood...

    by lynxpro

    Oh please, people. Just because one criticizes Torchwood does not make them a magical homophobe. Torchwood is worthy of criticism because it is a poor man's Angel. I mean come on. Gwen couldn't even properly handle the guns she was touting in Children of Earth. I've seen children handle toy guns with more vigor than her; granted, those kids were American so they weren't allergic to them. And for a show about Captain Jack, he was rarely shown in a positive light in the show. Captain Jack was always at his best in Doctor Who proper. Of course, Captain Jack was best in his debut episodes which were written by...drumroll please... Steven Moffat, not RTD.

  • April 12, 2010, 6:40 p.m. CST


    by Shoegeezer

    Well, Amy was in a flying England so obviously someone would mention her accent and they made a decent gag out of it. The only way they wouldn't have mentioned her accent would have been if they were on a flying Scotland, then perhaps you would have a claim on an "agenda". Don't tune in next week as it has Scottish actor Bill Patterson playing a Scottish scientist from Paisley in Scotland and he talks to Scottish Amy about Scotland a bit.

  • April 12, 2010, 7:34 p.m. CST

    One Thing I Forgot To Mention.....

    by Real Deal

    Has anyone noticed how the music on the show seems to have improved? I know it's probably still the same guy doing it but in the first episode I really liked the way the music went with the story like it was really enhancing it. Also the new Tardis interior was much improved.

  • April 12, 2010, 9:18 p.m. CST

    Few things, first, scottishagenda...

    by Bileranter

    wow. Just wow. Scots have no place in sci fi. Wouldn't want one if it were next to cunts like you. Moving on. Enjoyed that episode but then the second I thought about it, the dafter it became. OK, the whale, gay or not...might have been welsh, it agreed to help them without the torture. Only, they were still goin to have to feed it citzens weren't they? Or something? Ready for society to collapse given the lack of threat of being fed to the beast below. Next, if it didn't like Children, why did they keep feeding it children. I mean, surely having to fish out the kids and clean them up is a pain for them. Ok that's all. No place in sci fi. Fuck right off

  • April 13, 2010, 12:12 a.m. CST

    Bileranter, spud mcspud

    by Rhuragh

    Sarchasm: (sär'kăz'əm) 1. (n.) The abyss between the creator of witticisms and the intended recipient who does not find the humor in it. <BR><BR>Thanks for the kind words, Spud. I don't get to watch the episodes until after they air, so, by the time I've watched it, and written up a review, Herc has usually already posted his article. I still try to comment at least. I do sometimes regress to my natural lurker though.

  • April 13, 2010, 12:16 a.m. CST

    Even better than last weeks ep!

    by MorpheusTheSandman

    Loved the buttons! I wanted to press FORGET after seeying Shutter Island ...

  • April 13, 2010, 5:55 a.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    ...Moff may be Scottish, and have a thing for denigrating the English at the expense of bigging up his own nationality (which is a bit rich, since the English are paying for the Scots' free prescriptions, free uni tuition fess, etc etc) - but at least he also has the sense of humour to take the mickey out of the Scots sterotype occasionally. Example: "You're Scottish. Fry me something."<P> And yes, I get the tiresome and oh-so-fucking-witty weay that you swapped the word "gay" for "Scottish" and made an even more tiresome extended metaphor that made everyone laugh until their critical faculties kicked in and realised - you actually didn't really make a point at all. <P> Then again, unless you're English and living in England, and are of indigenous English caucasian descent, are heterosexual, and anything except upper class, you will not understand how it feels to live under a government whose sole purpose seems to be to legislate you and your opinions out of existence. We celebrate St Patrick's Day officially - we DON'T celebrate St George's Day officially. Any idea why not?<P> And while we're on the subject of trying to make a point by pointlessly swapping a word for another word and calling it an argument, here's how you do it RIGHT:<P> When's the last time you saw a Straight Pride march? Placards saying "It's Great To Be Straight... Yeahh!!", "Would You Adam & Eve It, I'm Straight", "Sorry Gents, I'm All About The Ladies" etc etc, people of all colours, shapes and nationalities, coming together in a celebration of being straight??<P> No??<P> Might be because in England, a march like that would be quickly banned by the local authorities on the grounds of offending someone. And we all know who the authorities are so fond of NOT upsetting, don't we? Step forward our new liberal left-wing rights-for-everyone-EXCEPT-the-majority oppressors! HEIL GORDON!!

  • April 13, 2010, 5:56 a.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    Then again... are you so upset about people slagging off Scots because you are a Scot, or because you hate everyone who isn't "Scottish"??<P> Twat...

  • April 13, 2010, 6:09 a.m. CST

    BBC archives: WHO material released

    by palimpsest

  • April 13, 2010, 9:37 a.m. CST

    Straight Marches for Spud!

    by Madmarek

    You don’t need a straight march because straight relationships have not been the subject of extreme hatred for centuries. Contextual references about straight relationships are so common in all forms of entertainment people don’t notice it; however one sentence alluding to a gay relationship causes some to regress to Neanderthalic comments. I think RTD initially wanted to create a Gene Roddenbury type universe were such petty hatreds had been abolished. Out there in space, or in the future a same sex or inter species sex relationship would be so ‘the norm’ no one would blink an eye. However this utopian vision doesn’t exist in the angry, hate filled Talkback section. One sentence in Waters of Mars (which was so quick and lightly mentioned I didn’t actually notice it on my first viewing) sent the Talkback homophobes into flaming uproar. And yes you guys may vehemently claim not to be homophobes and use the old, “Some of my friends are gay” argument but homophobic comments are still homophobic comments. ScottishAgenda’s post was funny and spot on because no matter how many times Moffat references Scotland in this series of Who the response will never be any more than slight annoyance. You can’t say the same if RTD makes one gay relationship reference in one sentence of an episode and you know it, which is why ScottishAgenda’s post made you so angry Mr Spud. Calm down, stop reading hate filled newspapers like The Daily Mail and try to enjoy stuff! :)

  • April 13, 2010, 1:25 p.m. CST


    by 2LeggedFreak

    Yep succinct is the're right...there wasn't a line or a moment wasted ( e.g running for long periods of time along corridors).<br /><br />I think the pacing and speed of information slightly put me off when watching the first time but my little old noggin was ready at the second time of watching and I enjoyed immensely.<br /><br />I'll be ready for the next episode if he keeps this kind of pacing up.

  • April 13, 2010, 1:56 p.m. CST

    New Daleks

    by Pogue__Mahone

    I don't know if I like the new Dalek redesign, Smashing! The original design is perfect in what it was, basically - a tank. All sharp edges and fierce geometry. The new Daleks look all sleek and rounded... more like bumber cars than tanks. They're pretty and all and will certainly make nice toys but why redesign a classic?!? Like making Spider-Man's costume black or turning the Punisher into a reanimated corpse. Like that stuff would NEVER happen! Haha... I guess I'm just old school when it comes to my WHO. The Daleks were frightening and very utilitarian... and that's why they've resonated with fans - and general science fiction pop culture - for decades.

  • April 13, 2010, 2:20 p.m. CST


    by paineywoo

    Sorry. Been ready this talk back for ages and had to explain something... In 'The Eleventh Hour', Prisoner Zero (after materialising out of the hospitals air con unit) kills Dr ramsden (played by Nina Wadia). So definitely no 'no one dies' subtext this series... However, there have already been a lot of 'Zeros' so far (especially for a British show) - Prisoner Zero, little Timmy scoring a 'zero' at school. Obviously, we Brits (why does this site call us Britons? Too many Astrix books as children?) say 'nothing', or 'nought'... Anyway, parting aside...and linked a little to the above, notice Bill Nighy making the Prisoner Zero clicking sound as he grinned in the series preview? Thought not - it's probably zero - I mean 'nothing'... :)

  • April 13, 2010, 2:26 p.m. CST

    Scottishagenda - Hahaha, awesome

    by Steve Rogers

    Funniest post I've read in a talkback for yonks. And you defo touched a nerve with some on here! Madmerek, I raised the Waters of Mars vs. Empty Child gay reference disparity above and was greeted with deafening silence - hmmmm. <p> Spud, why not just STOP GOING ON ABOUT: a) RTD - we all know how you feel, it's BORING. And b) gayness, in Doctor Who or otherwise. You've got your views, fine. Let it go for fuck's sake. With every passing week the only person who seems mental is YOU cos you can't seem to shut up about it.

  • April 13, 2010, 2:31 p.m. CST

    On another note

    by 2LeggedFreak

    What are we to make of Amy's ability to pick a lock?<br /><br />Maybe its part of the modern TV lady's artillery ( i.e. sloppy writing) but it was an odd place to have a pad lock...could just as easily been a few knots to undo.<br /><br />

  • April 13, 2010, 2:58 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Thanks for the biggest talkback-related laugh I've had in a long, long time. That was hilarious. Next thing you know these Scotts will want to have the right to marry or something. I mean, really, if someone asks them where they're from, do they HAVE to answer?? Every time? Like they're rubbing it in our faces or something? lol We should call them the "New EVANGELICAL Scotts"

  • April 13, 2010, 4:07 p.m. CST

    So in the Eleventh Hour

    by 2LeggedFreak

    If RTD had written it , would it have been "You're Gay, Mince something."<br /><br />Sorry..No, Really....Sorry.

  • April 13, 2010, 7:29 p.m. CST

    Pogue__Mahone, gotlick, Steve Rogers, Madmarek

    by scottishagenda

    Thanks, I'm here all week. Try the veal.

  • April 14, 2010, 4:28 a.m. CST

    Steve Rogers

    by spud mcspud

    Why don't I shut up about RTD and his gay agenda?<P> For the same reason gotilk, yourself, Madmarek, scottishagenda etc etc don't shut up about it... I have an opinion and this is a TB, specifically created for opinions to be aired on. Simple as that. It's called a right to reply. And if I didn't fight my corner - which isn't anything to do with hating gay people, but IS to do with hating any form of hypocrisy and specifically people claiming to want equality when they actually want to reverse the bigotry oin their favour - then you guys would have the first, last and middle words. So I reply. Big fucking deal.

  • April 14, 2010, 5:12 a.m. CST

    I gotta try to get this straight, Madmarek...

    by spud mcspud

    "You don’t need a straight march because straight relationships have not been the subject of extreme hatred for centuries." - Well, then, presumably to achieve a status quo between straight and LGBT people, we need equal rights for both sides - the right to marry, to cohabit, for public displays of affection to be legal on both sides, for both sides to be proportionally represented in the media, for both sides to be free of being physically threatened for who they are and what they do. Fair enough?? So where does the concept of a pride march even fit in here?? I'm brown-haired, and I'm left-handed. It's how I am; it's the tendency I was born with in both cases. It's not alterable (no naturally); it is what it is. The concept of being 'proud' of being left-handed, or brown haired, or straight, makes no sense to me - not when the idea of pride is usually the result of satisfaction felt for achieving something. I deliberately raised the idea of a Straight Pride march to illustrate how dumb the concept of gay pride is: how an you be gay of something that you were born as - not earned, built, created, achieved, worked for or strived for, but BORN WITH. It makes as much sense as Blue Eyed Pride, or Brunette Pride - it only serves to create division. The concept of Straight Pride is deliberately silly because straight is something a straight person is BORN as - how can you be proud of something that takes no effort, is not an achievement or the result of hard work, and is not something you have in any way had any influence over? Can any of you gay guys out there explain to me what the concept of Gay Pride means to you, please??<P> "And yes you guys may vehemently claim not to be homophobes and use the old, “Some of my friends are gay” argument but homophobic comments are still homophobic comments" - You'll need to read this first to get my response:<P> <P> This is interesting, because here we get to why I hate RTD so much - it's not his being gay, it's his attitude to how people react to his being gay. Fine, so the woman at the wedding was not only being tactless, but also rude. But switch this round: imagine, for ANY reason, a straight person telling a gay person " 'You're an unfit mother. You're ignorant. Your children are cleverer than you.'". Wouldn't happen - I'm willing to guess, your liberal hackles are rising at the very thought. But - hey! - being gay gives you special privileges! You can insult anyone you want, and it's OK! A bit like how only black people can say the "N" word in any context, or how a gay person calling a straight person "breeder" in a derogatory manner is strangely okay but a straight person calling a gay person something like a "poof" is not. Unless you're Jonathan Ross, and you're talking about your band. It's this attitude that if you're part of a minority, you are exempt from being an arsehole and can therefore treat other people as contemptuously as you wish by virtue of being gay/black/rich/whatever. There's no fucking excuse for this! I agree with the concept of equality between LGBT and straight people - but when you tell straight people they CANNOT be abusive, but LGBT people CAN, how is that equal?? Put simply, it's not. It's fucking hypocritical. And I have a problem with HYPOCRISY, NOT with sexual orientation - though there are so many hypocrites in the heterophobic community, it's one of the places I find myself at my most vociferous.<P> "ScottishAgenda’s post was funny and spot on because no matter how many times Moffat references Scotland in this series of Who the response will never be any more than slight annoyance. You can’t say the same if RTD makes one gay relationship reference in one sentence of an episode and you know it" - Well, leaving aside that Scottishagenda's post wasn't that great because (a) it wasn't funny and (b) it had no point to make, here's the main mistake he makes: MOFFAT CAN MAKE FUN OF HIS OWN AGENDA, RTD CAN'T! "You're Scottish - fry me something." The Moff had to be aware of what he was saying when he wrote that - he's IN ON THE JOKE, he KNOWS that there's a lot of Scottish influences in his new Who series, and he's having a laugh AT it as well as WITH it.<P> Can you give me one reference from the RTD era where he is having a self-aware laugh at the expense of his gay agenda?<P> I'm guessing not.<P> God knows how many posts have mentioned WHY RTD's gay agenda was so jarring to watch in action, so there's no point in rehashing it at length - suffice to say, he wrote the gay references in so obviously that he HAD to be doing it specifically to rile up the supposed "heterophobes". He's admitted as much several times in many interviews. So you have a grown man starting arguments by intentionally writing certain characters so one-dimensionally that their sole defining characteristic is their sexuality? What the fuck is that even supposed to achieve? You want LGBT and straight people to be equal in all areas of life - so to help achieve that, you widen the divisions between LGBT and straight people by turning what should have been a kids SF TV show into a public service announcement soapbox?? and you think this is the way for LGBT characters to find mainstream acceptance on TV??<P> Even Anthony Cotton's character in CORONATION STREET is better written than most of RTD's second-tier gay characters, and that's saying something, considering there isn't a more flamingly camp homosexual stereotype character on TV than Anthony Cotton's character.<P> Gay rights in the UK are going much the same way that black rights in the US went after the early 90s - it's no longer enough to be euqal with your so-called "oppressors", now you have to be (with apologies to Orwell) MORE equal - more rights, more protection, more freedom of speech (even if it's mostly hate speech) than the straight/white people. This causes MORE division, not less- but if that is the point, then it makes sense that the liberal media in the UK allow this to happen - because they WANT the idea of a white straight indigenous English males to become the minority. Why? Because that is the ultimate expression of liberalism in the UK today - the self-loathing of the post-Imperialist rich white person, who feels that the only way to make amends for all these horrors they believe the straight white Englishmen are responsible for is to eradicate said straight white Englishmen from any kind of public expression. Which is why Chris Rock can do a skit on the difference between a black perason and a n*****, but a white guy couldn't. This is why Dave Chappelle (who is otherwise a genius) can get so much mileage out of the differences between those crazy racist white folks and black people (who in his act are sterotypically all poor, on crack and eat chicken), while the white comedians stay the hell away from such material on the grounds it'd get their asses kicked. It's pernicious, but it's there - the final act of revenge on post-Imperialist white Englishmen... by their own kind, as reparations for sins that this generation never committed. I'm all for equality - but the liberals don't think equality is enough. I'm just speaking up for those of us who DIDN'T agree with apartheid, DIDN'T endorse slavery, DO NOT oppose gay rights or equality... but are being punished as if we are by being so demoonised by our own government in the media. It's no wonder so many dumb white people in the UK are voting BNP - it's because they are aware of what's going on, but (wrongly) assume that the BNP would redress the balance, when in fact they'd take us back to the evils that the liberals are trying to redress so heavy handedly right now.

  • April 14, 2010, 5:13 a.m. CST

    Just to drag the thread back to "The Beast Below"

    by offscauta

    I realise that nobody is still reading this, but has anybody read "The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas" by Ursula Le Guin? Possible inspiration for "The Beast Below". With a Space Whlae instead of a child, obviously.

  • April 14, 2010, 5:14 a.m. CST

    2Legged Freak

    by spud mcspud

    "If RTD had written it , would it have been "You're Gay, Mince something.""<P> That's EXACTLY the retort I should have written - because that's EXACTLY why the comparison between the Scottish agenda and RTD's gay agenda AREN'T A GOOD COMPARISON. Because, unlike RTD, Moff can actually laugh at himself, as well as with himself.

  • April 14, 2010, 5:14 a.m. CST

    Space Whale, not Space Whlae

    by offscauta

    The perils of piss poor proof reading.

  • April 14, 2010, 5:23 a.m. CST

    Steve Rogers

    by spud mcspud

    Deafening silence? Addressed as follows: The reference in WATERS OF MARS, though it is nowhere near as jarring as most of his others, is still jarring because by this point - RTD's antepenultimate episode - we've all got the RTD bingo card out and are just watching to see how many fuckups he comes up with. John Carpenter theft aside, WATERS OF MARS was one of the better episodes RTD wrote in the Specials year - but far more than the gay reference, the main problems in that episode are the Doctor's psychotically schizo lurches from one mood to the diametrically opposite, for no appranet reason than that RTD needed to get from the patented "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry" to "I'M A TIME LORD AND I CAN DO ANYTHING!!" but isn't a good enough writer to handle the transition from one mood to the next. There's also the idea that after only a few hours in his company, Captain Adelaide can be so convinced of how utterly wrong the Doctor is in his new-found megalomania that she would GIVE HER OWN LIFE to show him - why would such an otherwise rational character do such a thing? More to the point, why doesn't the Doctor have more of a fucking reaction to it than a slight griamce??<P> There are WAY bigger problems in WATERS OF MARS than the gay reference. and as for THE EMPTY CHILD? That reference worked, not because it related to the character and his hypocrisy in telling Nancy that he earned this food "by the sweat of his brow", but crucially THAT THE REFERENCE CAUSED A CHANGE IN CIRCUMSTANCES WITHIN THE SCENE - in this case, it forced the butcher to stop talking and not to violently drive the kids out of his house or attack Nancy - and that gave Nancy the chance to get the kids out safely across the gardens. Not only was there a REASON for that reference, but it DROVE THE NARRATIVE FORWARD - and when's tha last RTD gay reference you can quote me that did THAT?

  • April 14, 2010, 5:24 a.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    Proper Proof-reading Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance :D

  • April 14, 2010, 5:37 a.m. CST


    by scottishagenda

    Just to clear things up, the idea that Moffat has a Scottish Agenda was a joke. I don't think he does, and I don't think RTD had a gay one. Davies is gay and occasionally incorporates gay characters and references into his scripts. Moffat is Scottish and occasionally incorporates Scottish characters and references into his scripts. But you disagree, and that's fine. Difference and diversity are what make life interesting. By the way, are you English? And are you proud to be English?

  • April 14, 2010, 5:54 a.m. CST


    by spud mcspud

    I got the joke (and it did make me smile, though I doubt many on here believe that) but RTD has admitted in many interviews that he intentionally DOES add throwaway gay references to rile up the "ming-mongs", as he calls us. I just think that to behave in such a childish and inflammatory way, for a man who claims to want more respect for LGBT characters in the media (which I agree with also) is a bit of a joke, frankly. By all acounts, RTD isn't a very nice guy. Unless, of course, you whole-heartedlky agree with his every word, and write fawning interviews about him (as the interview I linked to earlier does), in which case, RTD is your best friend.<P> I think it is noteworthy that Moff took the mickey out of his own Scots references with that "You're Scottish - fry something". I like to think he realises that the amount of Scottishness in his WHO is noticeable, and so played up to it with some humour :D<P> Re the being English thing... Good question! My kneejerk reacion is to say yes, but on more thought, I'm proud of what England has achieved as a nation, past and present. I'm actually more proud of the heritage - the stuff that England has achieved - than of physically being English, though. Can one say the same for being gay? Can you be proud of what other gay people have achieved just because you're gay? I suppose, in the same way I can be proud of what other English people have achieved, just because I'm English, so in THAT way, I CAN see the comparison. But then, I could move to America, get the citizenship, take the pledge then say I'm proud to be an American - whereas you don't choose to be gay or straight, you're just born that way - so is "pride" the right word? And in case you're wondering, I don't remember the last time I saw an English pride march either - though in the UK these days, it'd almost certainly be cancelled for being "racist". <P> Short answer, I do feel some kind of pride for being English. But not for being straight, or brown haired, or left-handed, or anything that I was born as, so I'm not sure how gay pride works in comparison to national pride. I'd love someone who's actually attended a Gay Pride march, or who subscribes to the idea of gay pride, to tell me more about how this works, because to me, it's the same as being proud of being straight - it's just what I am, not something I do or choose. How can you be proud of something you can't control??

  • April 14, 2010, 11:21 a.m. CST

    Wow we sure do argue about queers a lot eh?

    by Smashing

    Sounds like a lot of men are just too tempted to try the cock, I can initiate anyone willing to try, I once had a mad gang bang at Rosyth Naval base that to this day provides wank bank material, so line em up boys and lets all try to move on from moaning about gays, especially you know since were English and most of the world think were gay anyway.

  • April 14, 2010, 11:27 a.m. CST

    Burn the evil left-handed McSpud!

    by Madmarek

    You mention you are left-handed and feel no need to go on a March about this but if you’d experienced oppression about naturally being left-handed, you may think differently. In most Western countries, being left-handed was seen as evil right up to the mid to late 1900’s. Left-handed pupils in Catholic schools had their left-hand tied behind their back to force them to use their right; it was common practice to strike pupils on the knuckles for using their left hand. Even today manufacturers predominately produce tools and equipment for right-handed people. Left-handed stuff is seen as ‘specialist’ which is why a large percentage of lefties develop ambidextrous abilities. As you may have gathered I am a leftie as well. My sister (who’s 4 years older then me) was but it was forced out of her at school, the experience was not pleasant. Luckily the school had abandoned such barbaric policies by the time I went through the elementary system. Now although you don’t get ‘Left-Handed’ marches you do have left-handed societies and there’s even a national left handed day in the UK (which is in August I think). Downing Street was petitioned in 2007 calling upon the government to “Apologise for the continued oppression of left-handed people and to legislate to end the discrimination - particularly in the manufacture of tools - that causes thousands of needless injuries to left-handed people every year". A light-hearted protest indeed but the point was well made. People who are gay as well as people who are Black have faced oppression on a massive scale (and still do really) compared to lefties so is it that hard to understand people wanting to shout out about it? Yes you are left-handed naturally and yet don’t feel the need to shout out and tell the world about it but this is because you have no reason to at all; you’ve never faced any real persecution over your natural tendency to favour the left hand over the right. Is it really that hard a concept to grasp? Dragging the discussion back to Who a bit, although I had some problems with some of RTD’s writing I really didn’t notice the gay references that much. Sure there’s Jack but Jack was ominsexual; he’d shag anything lol! People who have a problem with gays had a problem with Jack because they couldn’t see the character at all, they could only see the openly gay actor who portrayed Jack. RTD believed having gay relationships referenced in a predominantly straight TV show was an attempt, I believe, to make the subject so standard and normal no-one would notice or differentiate it from a straight or inter-species relationship. He may have thrown a few more in towards the end as a rebuttal against the online bigotry but I really didn’t notice it that much at all. Overall I really enjoyed RTD’s Who and think he should be congratulated for not only bringing the show back but making it bigger than ever. I’m enjoying Moffat’s Who as well but he is in no way proving to be the near perfect writer the RTD critics are making him out to be. The third act in The Beast Below was quite terrible but I’m looking forward to the rest of the season and think we are in for some treats!

  • April 14, 2010, noon CST

    Left-handed and proud!!

    by spud mcspud

    The weird thing is, I have a much greater problem with RTD's deus ex machina way of getting out of the stupid corners he wrote himself into. The gay stuff is fairly obviously his ham-fisted way of trying to start a debate on having gay characters in the media. I've NEVER argued over that - I have no problem with that - but the way he goes about it... I don't see how trying to antagonise people is meant to help to heal the division between gay people and straight people. Far more useful, isn't it, to try to understand WHY there is such a strong reaction to seeing same-sex kissing on prime-time TV? I'm not a huge fan of watching men kiss on TV - and yes, I'm the stereotypical straight male that LOVES watching women kiss (as long as they're good looking, heh heh) - but by no means would I advocate NOT showing it! I also understand why gay people would be offended by straight people going "EWW!" at seeing same-sex couples kiss. Doesn't mean it won't happen! The way the UK government is dealing with this is to just legislate against it - Don't like gays? Tough! It's against the law NOT to like it! - which doesn't get to the heart of why there is a problem - and if you don't truly understand WHY there's a problem, how do you deal with it?<P> Just telling people you are legally NOT allowed to dislike the idea of same-sex couples kissing does NOT eradicate or dissipate the problem - it drives it underground, and then you DO go back to the bad old days of gay people being beaten to death in secret for being gay. What RTD is doing isn't a dialogue - it's "Fuck YOU - you'll do it MY way", which isn't about shrinking the divide, it widens it. Why isn't this obvious? Do people REALLY think the only way to get the straight population who do feel uncomfortable watching same-sex kissing is to force it upon them and tell them if they dopn't like it, to go fuck themselves? Or should we have a media that is TRULY liberal enough to encourage discourse, where the straight people who do feel uncomfo0rtable with same-sex kissing could maybe explain WHY it makes them uncomfortable without the entire liberal media intelligentsia treating them like they are 60s era Ku Klux Klan members? Because - and this may come as a shock - most people who feel uncomfortable watching same-sex kissing do NOT want it banned in public, do NOT want it banned on TV, do NOT want it banned full stop - most of these people blieve in freedom, of all kinds, and only ask to have the freedom to feel the way THEY feel without being demonised for it.<P> The problem is, in this climate, in this country these days, such a situation is unthinkable. The choice is that you are so pro-gay-in-the-media that you accept the idea of grossly over-representation of gay people in the media (eg the glut of camp presenters on house makeover programmes in the UK, for example), or you are a slavering psycho who advocates the violent killing of all gay people, everywhere, all the time. Real life is WAY more shades-of-grey than this, but the RTD supporting liberal media will not have this - it doesn't fit in with their dogma. It's all or nothing with these people, and THAT is the problem I have - not with gay people, but with this climate of intolerance that is apparently a righteous intolerance because now it's gay people being intolerant of all those who do not support their over-representation in the media, rather than straight people being intolerant of the gay community. And I've said in the past, many many times - TWO WRONGS DO NOT MAKE A RIGHT. We need a discourse, not the opposite of what happened to gay people back in the bad old days.

  • April 14, 2010, 12:05 p.m. CST

    Smashing - cheers for the offer...

    by spud mcspud

    ...But though you're a good looking bloke (and you are - not being sarcastic here), and you're a smart bloke who I'd love to have a drink with - and you once wanked in the BBC radio booth, which is fucking PRICELESS - I went to private school in the UK. By the end of five years in THAT system, trust me - you know EXACTLY where you stand on whether or not you love the cock.<P> But you know why I love the idea of gay guys in the UK? Less men chasing the single women. This isn't as relevant since I've been with Mrs Spud-To-Be for the last decade - but to all the young single straight English men: cherish the gay men of England! For they are NOT chasing the women that you are!!

  • April 14, 2010, 12:19 p.m. CST

    Madmarek - re leftie oppression...

    by spud mcspud

    I'm probably part of the last generation to have handwriting lessons, letter writing lessons etc etc in the state school system, and I did go through the whole "write with your right hand, you're in the wrong if you don't" thing. but you know what? I learned to eat right-handed, to hold tea right-handed, but do most other things with my left. It never changed my life, I just wondered why some people are so hung up on changing the way you do things, eventually concluded that it was because they were idiots, and proceeded to do it my way anyway. No big deal, just ignored the stupidity.<P> For the same reason, I never had a problem with the idea of people being gay. At private school, male rape was not uncommon, but I never saw that as being particularly gay either - it was just another way for the bullies to make their chosen miserable victims suffer in a different way. So I do understand the complexities involved with the idea of straight vs gay, and the fact that there are levels of experimentation etc that don't necessarily end up with you being either "gay" or "straight" but sometimes between the two.<P> So, as for oppression? I'm not saying bad things don't happen in the UK to gay people in the wrong place at the wrong time - but the idea that foisting John Barrowman's questionable acting skills on us in a prime-time show is going to somehow reduce oppression of gay people and encourage straight people to lay aside their prejudices and engage with the idea of gay people in the media is just ridiculous in the extreme. You want change in the way gay characters are perceived? A good start would be to have characters written for whom the fact that they are gay IS NOT THEIR SOLE DEFINING CHARACTER TRAIT. Is that honestly too much to ask for people to understand?? And to allow people to express their reasons for being prejudiced against gay people (which in 99% of cases is just that initial "Eww!" refelx they get on seeing same-sex kissing or whatever) without fear of reprisal or slander, in order to get people to understand that there is nothing wrong with people being DIFFERENT from the rest of us, be they a different colour, race, sexual orientation or football supporter??<P> Suppressing freedom of speech just drives it underground, and - crucially - gives those who feel unable to express their true feelings a new axe to grind: that THEY now feel oppressed. And so you're back with gay people feeling oppressed angrily hating straight people who feel uncomfortable watching gay kissing but feeling too ostracised to openly talk about why they feel that way angrily hating them back. In other words - RTD'S ACTIONS ARE MAKING THINGS WORSE.

  • April 14, 2010, 5:53 p.m. CST

    Getting back to "The Beast Below".........................

    by axcel1

    Is it me or did the sonic screwdriver look bigger? That looked to me like a huge attachment on it. YES!!!!!!!!!! You know what they say, bigger is better!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • April 14, 2010, 5:56 p.m. CST

    Ooooooooooooooooo, I have to say this....................

    by axcel1

    Is that a sonis screwdriver in your pocket or are just glad to see me?

  • April 14, 2010, 5:57 p.m. CST

    Ooooooooooooooooo, I have to say this....................

    by axcel1

    Is that a sonic screwdriver in your pocket or are just glad to see me?

  • April 14, 2010, 5:58 p.m. CST

    Spud - seriously mate, in all friendliness

    by Steve Rogers

    I don't think it serves yourself or the points you make any good tyo keep banging on about it in every Who thread. I'm not taking the piss, this is seriously just a friendly bit of advice. Maybe next week just TRY and not bring it up? I can only speak for myself when I say I have no interest in having "the first middle and last" words about gayness in Doctor Who, but do any of the people you name REEEAALLY give much more of a shit? Or does the same argument get trotted out cos you bring up the same thing *every* week? <p> Again, I'm not having a pop, but I think for your own good you should give it a rest and not write rant after rant every week.<p> Obviously this is a talkback and opinions are the currency of the medium, and shit, I'm even interested to hear what you thought about the latest episodes, you can make some really good points. But *eeeevery* week the whole thing is derailed into this RTD-bashing gayness crusade. <p> Whoever started it, whoever said what, fuck it, let's just none of us bother anymore. In all friendliness I would ask you to see if you can make it through the Victory of the Daleks TB without going on about: a) RTD - he's gone, let's get over. b) the "gay agenda". Seriously, I think all involved should just say no more of this old shit, ignore the trolls, and just talk about what a top programme Who is (aside from the new theme tune, which is still yurrrrgh).

  • April 14, 2010, 5:59 p.m. CST

    Ok, one more time.................................

    by axcel1

    Is that a sonic screwdriver in your pocket or are you just glad to see me? Third time's the charm.

  • April 14, 2010, 6:02 p.m. CST

    Or, as we say in the USA....................................

    by axcel1

    Can't we all just get along????????????? Short and to the point.

  • April 14, 2010, 6:05 p.m. CST

    And, one more thing.........................................

    by axcel1

    I hope you all enjoy the next doctor Who, "Victory of the Daleks", I already know I will.

  • April 14, 2010, 6:11 p.m. CST

    And, one one more thing.......................................

    by axcel1

    If "Victory of the Daleks" does not jump start the Moffit Lovefest, I'm going to be worried, really.

  • April 14, 2010, 6:16 p.m. CST

    Is that a tear in the corner of my eye?

    by axcel1


  • April 14, 2010, 7:48 p.m. CST

    Daleks, sadly will start the hating...

    by cricklewood

    I'm 40. I've watched DW since Pertwee's last few eps. I first saw a dalek in real life when I was 10 and nearly exploded with excitement. I love 'em. Unfortunately this is all set to change next week when the redesigned, HUNCHBACKED, Weeble-inspired, garishly coloured new designs come in. They seriously look shit. Moffat, you've changed too much now. :(

  • April 15, 2010, 2:53 a.m. CST

    Looking forward to Winston Churchill's Daleks!

    by Madmarek

    Yes I think it's time to move onto this TB - I look forward to more Who chat in the next one where hopefully we can focus on Moffat, Matt and the lovely Karen Gilian....oh and DALEKS!! :)

  • April 15, 2010, 7:37 a.m. CST

    Anybody seen the Dalek redesign yet??

    by spud mcspud

    Not sold on them - they look like a rounded-off kiddies toy version of Daleks - here's hoping it's a one-off and NOT the real design...

  • April 15, 2010, 7:39 a.m. CST

    Steve Rogers - Understood

    by spud mcspud

    I'd LOVE to leave it there - RTD's gone, I'm happy, so are all the other RTD-haters, we got what we wanted.<P> That said, if someone goads me, I'm not gonna sit here like a bitch and get slagged off. I'll leave off the gay agenda stuff (which thankfully seems to not be a problem in WHO any more) if the apologists can lay off me. Because if they don't, this shit will just keep happening every week.<P> So - VICTORY OF THE DALEKS! A Gatiss episode! And WWII DALEKS!! Not sold on the new design though - am hoping they're just an offshoot, and not a permanent redesign...

  • April 15, 2010, 1:42 p.m. CST

    I wish this site had the option to delete posts.

    by Smashing

    I'm not typing things whilst on Codine anymore, I come across like a sex mad teenager. Spud I like the new Dalek look, apparently they have ranks. Blue is a scientist, Red a drone, White a leader, Yellow a eternity! and Orange something I can't remember.

  • April 15, 2010, 2:47 p.m. CST

    Gold Dalek in "Victory of the Daleks"

    by offscauta

    The "Next Time" trailer shows at least one of the gold Daleks that we're used to from the last 5 years. I personally hope they don't ditch it completely.

  • April 15, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Smashing, stay off the codeine...

    by spud mcspud

    ...Well, until you want a REALLY good night in!! Because you + codeine = a cornucopia of sexual delights and perversions with one lucky (and soon to be knackered) young bloke! You dog - you're putting us straight blokes to shame with that libido...<P> Dalek ranks, eh? I'm not averse to THAT idea, and I'm always up for a radically different Dalek look - I fucking LOVED the Emperor Dalek in PARTING OF THE WAYS, it was every kind of awesome - but these things look like sex toys! Honestly - or those weird plastic 3-limbed vibrating shoulder massagers or something. It's hard to imagine fearing the evil of an empire that looks for all the world like Ann Summers' vilest sexual desires made life-size. I liked the fascistic Daleks best - the ones RTD brought us, all hard angles and bristling weaponry. To hell with the Sex Daleks - bring back Gun Fetish Daleks!!!

  • April 15, 2010, 5:58 p.m. CST

    So, does that mean..................................

    by axcel1

    We'll all going to play nice in the next post, in honor of the return of the Daleks?

  • YES, yes we will!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • April 15, 2010, 8:02 p.m. CST

    I think the new Dalek design is inspired by Tupperware.

    by Smashing

    It came to me as I fell asleep last night.