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The Docback, 'The Doctor, The Widow and The Wardrobe'!! 2011's DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, And More!!




Merrick here...

My initial plan had been to incorporate a bit of retroness into this particular Docback, but I figured anything I contributed would be quickly and properly eclipsed by  "The Doctor, The Widow and The Wardrobe" - aka "This Year's DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special"  - which broadcasts Sunday December 25 at 7pm on BBC One, and  9pm ET/PT  on BBC America.  

But before we get to that...



Gold's score for Season/Series Six was never as wholly inspired or altogether rousing as his work in Season/Series Five, but Season Six remains a damn fine (and often amazing) work in itself.  And, like its predecessor, Gold's efforts here represent some of the best music ever brought to a television series. More details in the coming weeks, but for now...

The 66 track (!?!?), two disc set is now available HERE in the U.K. (where I understand it's also downloadable on iTunes), and is available HERE in the U.S.  Although there may be stocking issues in the U.S. at the moment, so another good U.S. option (and somewhat better price) would be Screen Archives Entertainment.  




In a recent discussion with Scotsman, Grand Moff Steven talks about pushing of the next wave of DW episodes towards later next year:  "’s almost like an aesthetic thing. If you’re having to close the curtains so you can see the screen, that’s not a good time to be watching a show that’s largely about tunnels and torches. I think it’s a show you watch in the dark."  He also hints that we may get multiple episodes commemorative episodes marking the show's upcoming 50th anniversary, and coyly (but decidedly non-committally) addresses a fervent fan desire which pops up every now and again here in The Docbacks:  Scotsman's Paul Whitelaw re: Moffat:  

Fans are clamouring for an anniversary special featuring current incumbent Matt Smith alongside many of the previous Doctors, I venture. “Apparently,” he shrugs with a laugh, with nothing more to say on the matter.

There are many more interesting tidbits to be found.  Click HERE to find the article in its entirety!





A BBC press release describes the story thusly...

Matt Smith (The Doctor) is joined by Claire Skinner (Outnumbered), Bill Bailey (Black Books), Arabella Weir (Skins, The Fast Show) and Alexander Armstrong (Armstrong & Miller) in the new festive special packed full of Christmas thrills and chills from lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat (The Adventures of Tintin).

It’s Christmas Eve, 1938, when Madge Arwell comes to the aid of an injured Spaceman Angel as she cycles home. He promises to repay her kindness – all she has to do is make a wish.

Three years later, a devastated Madge escapes war-torn London with her two children for a dilapidated house in Dorset. She is crippled with grief at the news her husband has been lost over the channel, but determined to give Lily and Cyril the best Christmas ever.

The Arwells are surprised to be greeted by a madcap caretaker whose mysterious Christmas gift leads them into a magical wintry world. Here, Madge will learn how to be braver than she ever thought possible. And that wishes can come true...

Madge Arwell is played by Claire Skinner, Lily Arwell by Holly Earl and Cyril Arwell by Maurice Cole

A few weeks ago, The Powers That Be released this tantalizing, prequelish mini-episode which presumably contextualizes some of the events we'll see this weekend.  

This represents our last blast of "new" WHO for some time - Series/Season 7 will continue sometime next year and The Docback will still be around to welcome it warmly.  Until then, we'll continue steadily forward with our weekly Friday Docbacks as I explore vintage DOCTOR WHO episodes, take a look at whatever new DVDs and/or Blu-rays and/or audios may be released...and plans are currently afoot to potentially broaden our coverage here (i.e. DWverse products and more).  I hope you'll stay with should be fun.  


I'd like to take a moment to sincerely wish  each and every one of you the happiest, warmest, most peaceful, and most meaningful of Holidays.  I hope the next week or two affords all of us the opportunity to put our stresses, worries, and misgivings aside and, simply, re-embrace and re-discover the goodness in our lives. The qualities that are often swept under the rug, marginalized, or taken for granted when  overshadowed by the immediacies of our daily existence.  More than gifts or celebration, that's often what this Holiday Season means to me.  A chance to re-orient to my humble and consistently fractured little universe.  A chance to breathe, clear my head, and reboot.  Which, really, is DOCTOR WHOy in more than a few ways.  Whatever journey you may undertake take this time of it physical, spiritual, or's a tip of the hat and the warmest of regards.  It's been a pleasure getting to know you all, and I look forward to more adventures with you in the coming year.  

We'll be back next Friday with more WHOness, at which time the Docback will become a Lockback as well - for the January 1 premiere of new SHERLOCK telefilms from Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss.  

Until then?  Peace on Earth, and wherever we may travel...







"The Impossible Astronaut"

"Day of the Moon"

"The Curse of the Black Spot"

"The Doctor's Wife"

"The Rebel Flesh"

"The Almost People"

"A Good Man Goes To War"

"Let's Kill Hitler"

"Night Terrors"




"An Unearthly Child" (Story #1)

"The Daleks" (Story #2)

"The Edge of Destruction" (Story #3)

"Marco Polo" (Story #4)

"The Keys of Marinus(Story #5)

"The Aztecs" (Story #6)

"The Sensorites" (Story #7)

"The Reign of Terror" (Story #8)

"Planet of Giants" (Story #9) 

"The Dalek Invasion of Earth" (Story #10)

"The Rescue" (Story #11) 

"The Romans"  (story #12) 

"The Gunfighters" (Story #25)

"The Colony in Space" (Story #58) 

"Day of the Daleks" (Story #60) + Preview of the DotD Special Edition

"The Talons of Weng-Chiang" (Story #91)

"The Sun Makers(Story #95)

"The Awakening" (Story #131)

"Frontios(Story #132)

"Time and the Rani" (Story #144)

"Paradise Towers" (Story #145) + New WHOvian Documentary / Newsbits


Merrick's Personal Journey With The Doctor (How Merrick Got Hooked On DOCTOR WHO)

DOCTOR WHO Title Sequences & DW At Comic-Con 2011

"The Crash of the Elysium" (Manchester version - interactive DOCTOR WHO adventure)

Why Eccleston Left, Here Comes Caroline Skinner, And Season/Series Six Part 1 on Blu-Ray And DVD

New Trailer For Season/Series Six Part 2




1) a Docback should be about completely open and free discourse regarding all things WHO (with, obviously, some variation on subject matter from time to time - the real world intervenes, discussions of other shows are inevitable, etc.)... 

2) matters of SPOILAGE should be handled with thoughtful consideration and sensitivity.  Posts containing SPOILERS should clearly state that a SPOILER exists in its topic/headline and should never state the spoiler itself . "** SPOILER ** Regarding Rory" is OK, for example.  "** SPOILER ** Battle of Zarathustra" is fine as well.  "**SPOILER** Why did everyone die?"  Is NOT good.  

And, above all... 

3) converse, agree, disagree, and question as much as you want - but the freedom to do so is NOT a license to be rude, crass, disrespectful, or uncivilized in any way.  Not remaining courteous and civil, as well as TROLLING or undertaking sensational efforts to ignite controversy, will result in banning.  Lack of courtesy may receive one (1) warning before a ban is instigated.  Obvious Trolling or Spamming will result in summary banning with no warning.  One word posts intended to bump-up any Docback's figures on AICN's "Top Talkbacks" sidebar will be considered actionable Spam - they not only complicate efforts to access Docbacks from mobile devices, but impede readers' abilities to follow or engage in flowing conversation. 
In short, it's easy.  Be excellent to each other.  Now party on...
Readers Talkback
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  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:07 a.m. CST

    Best wishes to each and every Docbacker

    by Mister Vertue

    You're a real credit to Who fans all over the world. Have a peaceful and happy holiday and a wonderful 2012!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:11 a.m. CST

    Merry Docmus!

    by CB Chap

    Ho Ho Ho

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:13 a.m. CST

    There hasn't been a good Xmas special since the first one

    by JonJonB9

    Can't see this going against that trend.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:14 a.m. CST

    Is next years Christmas Special called... The Wizard of Who?

    by CB Chap

    Perhaps something more Christmassy like.. The Sound of Who The Whoman Miracle on 34th and Who Street etc....

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:19 a.m. CST

    Christmas Carol was wonderful

    by HornOrSilk

    And I expect this will be too.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:19 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas

    by HornOrSilk

    Everyone get out of the dark... and have fun!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:32 a.m. CST

    Re: There hasn't been a good Xmas special since the first one

    by thethirdman3

    I disagree. The Runaway Bride and The Next Doctor were both enjoyable. I found them more enjoyable than The Christmas Invasion. I really loved the scene in the Runaway Bride when the Tardis was chasing Donna on the freeway. Also it introduced my favourite companion Donna.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:44 a.m. CST

    Who music video featuring the 8th Doctor's console!

    by Kevin Kittridge

    I made a Doctor Who music video (it just finished uploading to Youtube a few minutes ago). It features the ACTUAL console from the TV movie. It also has all Eleven Doctors represented and is located here: I'm pretty proud of it and hope you enjoy it. Also, while sleeping last night and waiting for my pal Rick to finish the VFX on the video, I had a dream that I was at a Who fan event with David Tennant and Peter Davison. David was my pal, and Peter remembered me from when we got our picture taken together. I was eager to get my pic with Tennant and Davison together. It was pretty awesome.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 10:52 a.m. CST

    "Christmas Carol" was my first real exposure to Dr. Who

    by FeralAngel

    I hope this new Xmas special will be as good...and will temper my sadness at Amy Pond's eventual departure (Rory, on the other hand, can kick off any time. What a drip).

  • he isnt christian why does the bbc hate jews and/or the rest of us

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 11:23 a.m. CST

    Two days!

    by sunspot_mike

    Having the Doctor to look forward to on Christmas has really increased my enjoyment of the Holiday over the last several years. Me and some friends were comparing Doctor Who to some other sci-fi franchises last night and while we were talking about it, we realized that we really can't discuss the show objectively. The other shows we could kind of point out the cheesy parts and the sections that we didn't like. With Doctor Who, it was all like, "Yeah, wasn't that awesome?!" As grown men, we've lost all ability to keep a clear head when it comes to Doctor Who. Bring it on Christmas!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 12:26 p.m. CST

    restyles - 'why does the BBC hate Jews'?

    by Mister Vertue

    You have absolutely *no* idea how ridiculous that sounds. Have you ever been in a BBC boardroom? I wish Alan Yentob could personally respond to your statement. That would be priceless.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 12:43 p.m. CST

    ralph hinkley!!

    by gotilk

    Really wonderful, fun job on the video. Very entertaining. How on earth did anyone get that console?? That's the story I want to hear now that I've seen the video. Loved the little references... like the spoons... and the picking of just the right celery stalk. Wonderful. Great , fun holiday gift. Thanks!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 12:45 p.m. CST

    Have an absolutely wonderful holiday, DocBackers!

    by gotilk

    Thanks to all of you for a great year. And thanks, Merrick for your efforts here and your dedication.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 12:51 p.m. CST

    Thanks, gotlik!

    by Kevin Kittridge

    The folks up in Canada where they shot the TV Movie were cleaning house and just wanted to get rid of it. My friend Paul got it at a STEAL. Thanks for watching, I'm really happy with it. Enjoy the holidays!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 12:51 p.m. CST

    Why Christmas?

    by zacdilone

    In recent decades Christmas in Britain has become more of a winter cultural festival than a true Christian celebration. Not to say that wonderful seasonal expressions from a Christian perspective are completely absent in Britain (some of the best Christian music of the season comes from England, for example), but on the whole the nation seems to embrace more of a secular approach to the holiday. The Doctor is not celebrating Christ's birth, he's joining in the festive spirit of yuletide, and there is a difference.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 12:56 p.m. CST

    Wishing every Docbacker a Merry Christmas!

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    I will be back after Christmas to discuss the new episode. Cheers to all!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 1:04 p.m. CST


    by steverogers5

    Yeah, Runaway Bride is my favourite Christmas Special, and for pretty much the same reasons you listed. In fact I could tell from the last 5 minutes that Donna would make a great companion for Tennat's Doctor, and so I was overjoyed when they made the announcement that that would actually happen! Conversely through I think I disliked the The Next Doctor for pretty much the loss of the companion. I never understood why the Christmas sepcials are becoming increasingly solo affairs for the Doctor. You'd think he'd want to spend them with the closest thing he has to actual family..

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 1:05 p.m. CST

    Merry Christmas Docbackers :)

    by Monkeybumcutlets

    Hope everyone here has great Christmas, and the countdown to a new episode starts now, only two days to go. Oh and thanks Merrick for doing this, I read it every week but don't really feel I'm well enough versed in Who history to comment much, but this docback has prompted me to seek out a lot of old episodes on YouTube which has brought back many happy childhood memories. I'll be checking back about 8:00pm on Sunday too see what everyone thought, but I'm guessing it'll be amazing MBC

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 1:12 p.m. CST

    I think the Christmas Special Next Year

    by HornOrSilk

    Should have multiple Doctors. To start off the ride to the 50th. If I were to use another classical to base it on... I think oddly enough I would do "The Sailor of the Seas of Fate" by Michael Morecock. Not necessarily what one would think as a source for a Christmas story -- however, it could be adapted to make it fit, it would give a new way to do multi-Doctor stories, and it would be fun. And which Doctors would I have in it? 7th, 8th, 10th and 11th

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 1:55 p.m. CST

    Matt Smith has worn out his welcome with me...

    by Angry Mike

    Need new Doctor for the 50th.

  • Can't wait for the special!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 2:15 p.m. CST

    And to Merrick

    by Mister Vertue

    I'd like to add my sincere thanks for all the work you put into the Docbacks each and every week. It's a wonderful gathering of Who fans, old and new (both in terms of age and exposure to Who), and it's fun sharing this space with you all on a regular basis. I hope we can keep this going as we approach the anniversary year, and expand our numbers too. Merrick, you're a star!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 2:36 p.m. CST

    This S6 Soundtrack cannot come fast enough

    by maelstrom_ZERO

    Once that album hits iTunes, I'll be all over that like kids on a half-priced carnival ride. It apparently may not be as amazing as S5's, but I'll take what I can get. I kid you not, every few days I ramp up the S5 OST in Winamp and just listen through as much of it as possible, using it as BG music for whatever I'm doing on the comp. I could live the rest of my life to Who's S5 soundtrack, and I would not get tired of it. It's some of the most poignant, rousing, evocative music I've ever laid ears on, bar none.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:41 p.m. CST

    Merry Christmas to all

    by DoctorTom

    and Happy Hannukah, Happy Kwanzaa, Joyous Yule and joyous other festivals that you may celebrate at this time of year. Only two days until we are halfway through the long darkness, as they said in last year's Special.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:43 p.m. CST

    On the first day of Christmas, The Doctor gave to me...

    by Perigee

    A TARDIS he calls "Sexy..." Your turn...

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:46 p.m. CST

    Next year's Christmas special

    by DoctorTom

    I don't want to see multiple Doctors - I want to see all the Ponds celebrate a Christmas together (maybe this will be the episode we last see Rory and Amy with) - have Rory, Amy and River, and have the Doctor's daughter Jenny. Captain Jack could liven it up too. The comedy potential of River thinking that Jenny being the Doctor's daughter is some sort of spoiler she's not supposed to know about yet, the joy of the Doctor finding out that Jenny's alive, and the comedy potential of Rory's reactions to Jenny calling him grandfather would make it all worth it. Besides, it would let Moffat write the scene he's always wanted to do where Jack goes to hit on River until he finds out who she is, followed by hitting on Jenny until he finds out who SHE is. Now, if you really must have multiple Doctors, having a small bit with Paul McGann during the Time War, with Matt Smith telling him the cost will be great but it will work out in the end might be all you need.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:50 p.m. CST

    On the second day of Christmas, the Doctor gave to me

    by DoctorTom

    Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy" over to someone else now...

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:52 p.m. CST

    Doctortom, brilliant notion

    by KanekoFan

    I love the idea of River thinking that Jenny is a spoiler! And I remember reading somewhere that Jenny was left alive in part at Moffat's request because he might want do something with the character down the line.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:52 p.m. CST


    by Casey4147

    The 66 track (!?!?), two disc set is now available HERE in the U.K. (where I understand it's also downloadable on iTunes), and is available HERE in the U.S.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:55 p.m. CST

    On the third day of Christmas, the Doctor gave to me

    by KanekoFan

    Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy" over to someone else now...

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:59 p.m. CST

    Four Timey Wimeys..........

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 3:59 p.m. CST

    doctortom The Ten Ponds

    by HornOrSilk

    Could be an episode in the season itself. But I think for Christmas, a multi-Doctor story is next. I really do. And remember, I am the one who suggested the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe for a story ;) If only the Moff was reading this and would follow through with my idea. ;)

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 4:04 p.m. CST


    by Casey4147

    Boy that got mangled. Here's what it should have said... (Quote) The 66 track (!?!?), two disc set is now available HERE in the U.K. (where I understand it's also downloadable on iTunes), and is available HERE in the U.S. (End Quote) Heck with that. For $33 and change, I ordered direct from - they have no problem shipping to U.S. addresses - and am getting both the Series 6 and the A Christmas Carol soundtracks for that price. Gotta wait until the end of December for delivery, but that's still quicker than waiting on a U.S. release...

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 4:15 p.m. CST

    casey4147 -- SHAME

    by HornOrSilk

    You could have ordered it on! Doctor Who: Original Television Soundtrack Series 6 From: Silva Screen Records Format: 2 CD Soundtrack Release Date: December 19, 2011 Our Price: $15.95 Quantity in Cart: None They are very worthwhile as DW places go. Look to them in the future!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 4:47 p.m. CST


    by Casey4147

    Wow, never heard of that one. Thanks for the link, I'll investigate them...!

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 4:52 p.m. CST

    Casey4147 - you are welcome

    by HornOrSilk

    They are the best of the best in North America for Doctor Who products (though they do more than just Doctor Who). Very reputable. Great people. I know many don't know of them, so I keep pointing to them, because they ARE that good. I get my Big Finish CDs from them all the time.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 4:58 p.m. CST

    I'll agree with you there, hornorsilk

    by DoctorTom

    WhoNA have been very good to deal with. I'm getting my Who CDs and such from Ken's Korner, though. Ken used to have Ambrosia Books, and that was the other good Doctor Who place to deal with.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 4:59 p.m. CST

    On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...

    by DoctorTom

    Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy" over to someone else now...

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:03 p.m. CST

    doctortom I admit my bias

    by HornOrSilk

    Living in Indy, having been to their facility, talking to them in person... and knowing how helpful and friendly they have been through the years even when I wasn't living in Indy.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:06 p.m. CST

    On the Sixth Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me

    by HornOrSilk

    Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy"

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:18 p.m. CST

    I can understand the bias

    by DoctorTom

    Anything Who-related things that I'm not getting from Ken (or the Doctor Who Magazine, which I get through local comic shops) I'll look at WhoNA for. Over the years the two have been good for Doctor Who books when the chains were having problems (I'm thinking back to the Virgin New Adventures, and starting with the early days of the BBC Eighth Doctor Adventures.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:21 p.m. CST

    On the Seventh Day of Christmas my true love gave to me...

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Seven Rorys dying Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy"

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:25 p.m. CST

    On the Eighth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me...

    by DoctorTom

    Eight gangers melting Seven Rorys dying Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy"

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:37 p.m. CST

    On the nineth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me

    by HornOrSilk

    Nine Daleks Dancing Eight gangers melting Seven Rorys dying Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy"

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:40 p.m. CST

    I want for Christmas TARDIS Blueprints!

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    I have the urge to build one, but the prints that I have found online are really crappy in the way they detail the construction of it. I have a friend that builds houses, and he even said that it didn't make much sense. I wish that one day the BBC would just publish the blueprint. I don't see why it is such a problem to do so.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:41 p.m. CST

    Just not looking forward to the special this year ...


    I think I'm still jaded from the averageness of the last series and I'm finding Smith's Doctor a bit predictable now. Be interesting to see the viewing figures for this one.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:43 p.m. CST

    On the Tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Ten Masters laughing Nine Daleks Dancing Eight gangers melting Seven Rorys dying Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy"

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:44 p.m. CST

    I find Smith's Doctor great. And I think he has surprises for us

    by HornOrSilk

    He's the Doctor who will change his past. Count on it ;)

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:45 p.m. CST

    On the Eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me

    by HornOrSilk

    Eleven Cybermen a Piping Ten Masters laughing Nine Daleks Dancing Eight gangers melting Seven Rorys dying Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy"

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:45 p.m. CST

    I had to do 11 for that classic reference...

    by HornOrSilk

    I hope you know about the Phantom Piper ;)

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:48 p.m. CST


    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    We don't reference Colin Baker's Doctor on the Docbacks. ;)

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:50 p.m. CST

    Horn also

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Moonbase was, I thought one of the worst Cyberman stories.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:53 p.m. CST

    On the Twelfth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me

    by DoctorTom

    Twelve Doctors Special Eleven Cybermen a Piping Ten Masters laughing Nine Daleks Dancing Eight gangers melting Seven Rorys dying Six Wirrns a Laying Five Gold Axons Four Timey Wimeys Three Weeping Angels Two Amy Ponds, And a TARDIS he calls "Sexy" ....because that's the present we all want on the twelfth day, whenever somebody takes over for Matt Smith.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 5:56 p.m. CST

    And on the Thirteenth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me

    by DoctorTom

    A Silent, who made us forget that there was actually a thirteenth day of Christmas. That's why the songs only go to Twelve Days of Christmas now. Well, the Silence had to be worked in somehow....

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 6:01 p.m. CST

    mj's ghost

    by DoctorTom

    Of COURSE we reference Colin Baker's Doctor on the Docbacks - we don't hold the poor scripts that he was often given, or the clothing choice foisted upon him, against Colin Baker at all. Besides, if we can't reference Colin Baker, it makes it harder to talk about the Valeyard. And we all know that Santa doesn't actually give coal to the bad boys and girls, he takes them away and gives them to the Valeyard to use as companions.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 6:02 p.m. CST

    michael_jacksons_ghost Moonbase

    by HornOrSilk

    Well, the Phantom Piper/Jamie aspect I loved.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 6:06 p.m. CST

    Oh and I do talk about Colin

    by HornOrSilk

    His Doctor is great. And his audios brings scenes like this:

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 6:08 p.m. CST

    Look who is a winner on X-Factor!

    by HornOrSilk

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 6:14 p.m. CST

    And since it is Christmas, and Prometheus is Popular

    by HornOrSilk

    You got to see this trailer:

  • LOL. I know it is not his fault, and I have met Colin before, and he is the nicest guy. When I was a kid, I went to the Goodwill, and they had 20 some Doctor Who novels for .25cent each!!! Among those were Moonbase. And the only thing I can remember was how boring it was. My taste has changed since I was a kid, so maybe now I might like that story.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 6:39 p.m. CST

    Merry Christmas Docbackers!

    by notspock2

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 7 p.m. CST

    On the Eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me...

    by Kevin Kittridge

    All Eleven Doctors... and the 8th Doctor's console that we used in that music video I mentioned earlier! Seriously, let me know what you think.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 7:35 p.m. CST

    restyles - Why not an Eid special? Or Diwali?

    by Gault

    Maybe there's no Hanukkah special because the Jewish population make up about 0.5% of the UKs entire population compared to over 70% of Christians.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 7:36 p.m. CST

    That 12 Days of Christams song was wonderful.

    by DrBathroomMD

    4 Timey Wimeys

  • More accurately you would be called a torch, a torch, which keeps the light shining over and past this special time of year (well, at least for most of us Docbackers it is called Christmas...). So I want to express my gratitude for this special place within the internet, where we can sneak in, read silently, talk vividly, hang out for a while with each other, exchange private goodies and baddies, take part in each other's insights - and mostly, having a good time visiting this very special place... I won't name each of you this time... because you all know that I address every single living and writing soul on these Docbacks! Have a good time! When that's not exactly possible, make the best of this time - YOUR time! Be with the ones you love! Think of the ones you love (You do it, I'm sure, but I wanted to mention it, anyway...)! Thank You, Merry Merrick to give us these chances to meet and greet, walk and talk - to enjoy the warm (and warming) welcoming here! ALL OF YOU - HAVE (weiterhin!) A GREAT TIME! Per Platjenwerbe (near Bremen, Germany) (I've looked outside... but I still haven't seen this Reindeer with this very shiny nose....)

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 8:56 p.m. CST

    I hope this X-mas special is better than the last couple

    by I am not a number

    THE CHRISTMAS INVASION was my favorite one. The last one had some good moments (the Doctor seeming to step into the film by going back in time, and the twist on the ghost of Christmas Future), but had no emotional resonance. Plus I thought the flying shark was stupid. At least it was better than the dull, THE NEXT DOCTOR - that one was a chore to get through, and yet another waste of the Cybermen (oh look, emotions are making their heads explode again!). This one certainly looks promising; I just hope there's more to it than Moffat showing how clever he is.

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 9:18 p.m. CST

    I like all of the Who X-mas episodes

    by FrodoFraggins

    Just a nice present that more shows should give us

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 9:40 p.m. CST

    I find with who Xmas episodes

    by mukhtabi

    The current one is always the best! Hopefully it keeps up on that streak!!

  • Just thought I'd ask... I jumped on the last DocBack way too late... There's not going to be a lot of people from NewWho there in February, but they'll have Paul McGann, Eric Roberts, Daphne Ashbrook, John de Lancie, and Blade co-creator Marv Wolfman...

  • Dec. 23, 2011, 11:52 p.m. CST

    to ralph hinkley

    by lynxpro

    Are you the bloke in NorCal who possesses the TARDIS TV Movie Console? Phil Segal, the producer, claims that was basically stolen from the set. He'll be at GallifreyOne if you'd like to take that up with him... Personally, I'm envious. The TV Movie Console is just a work of awesome and I think it's cool that it's being stored in Northern California where we have a solid history of being long time Who fans... There's a YouTube video showing the TV Movie Console in storage in someone's garage...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 12:08 a.m. CST

    Alan Yentob...

    by lynxpro

    He tried to bring back Doctor Who and without a lot of the stupid ideas the BBC folks actually wanted to enact. Funny how fandom hates on Fox for the "changes" they requested for what became the TV Movie yet it was the BBC folks who didn't want Sylvester McCoy to take part and instead wanted Tom Baker back for the regeneration scene to Paul McGann and thereby erasing the 5th - 7th Doctors from continuity because they just weren't as popular... It was the BBC themselves who were at fault for the perception back then that Americans were only familiar with Tom Baker since it was their own division [Lionheart Television/BBC Enterprises/BBC Worldwide] that forced all the PBS tv stations to purchase the rights to the entire Tom Baker era each and every time the stations purchased any of the other Doctors to televise...thus the Baker episodes got much much more airplay because of it... And Merrick, it would be really cool if you could get in touch with any of the former people in charge of the old Doctor Who Fan Club of America if you want the scoop on how Doctor Who was here in America from the 1970s through the early 90s before the fandom implosion circa 92...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 12:15 a.m. CST

    where can you find old Doctor Who books in ePub format?

    by lynxpro

    Just after I finally buy myself a decent e-reader, the BBC pulls from their website all the "old" BBC Books line of Doctor Who adventures that were previously hosted on their website [in PDF, HTML, and ePub formats] for free... So, aside from the, ahem, torrents, are there any other URLs out there?

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 12:47 a.m. CST

    To Lynxpro

    by Kevin Kittridge

    I don't own the console, but I do know the fellow who does. It is in Burbank, and indeed in the dude's garage. I know he paid money for it. A steal for how much worth, yet not literally stolen! The video you are referring to may in fact be mine!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 5:22 a.m. CST

    No new Whotininnies until next week, right?

    by gotilk

    Crazy week for all of us I'm sure..... and a great one as well. Personally, I re-connected with someone I thought would remain out of my life for good. It felt great. Best gift ever. Everyone have a great Christmas, holiday, whatever you celebrate. Be well and remember.... Just a day now!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 6:22 a.m. CST

    I woke up way too early today.

    by gotilk

    And here I am searching for that video of the guy with the 1996 TARDIS console in his garage. Anyone found it yet? I'm fascinated for some reason. Found a few other interesting things I had not seen before, including this tour of the 1996 set... I'd see a more abbreviated version somewhere before. But this looks like the whole clip from the DVD release.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 6:33 a.m. CST

    Apologies if I posted this long ago

    by gotilk

    If I did I did not watch it myself. This is an old PBS interview with Colin Baker I just caught and enjoyed...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 7:20 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas with John Cleese and Tom Baker

    by HornOrSilk ;) And Gotilk it was from your link I got to here...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 8:17 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas, Docbackers!

    by Captain Howdy

    Here's your card:

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 8:40 a.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Ahahaha!! Short but perfect. Love Cleese.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 8:40 a.m. CST

    Thanks, gamma-ray_joe

    by gotilk

    You too.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:11 a.m. CST

    Gotlik - 8th Doctor console in a garage video

    by Kevin Kittridge

    Is the video you are referring to at the bottom of this blog? Do I sound like a frigging geek in this video? Yes, I certainly do. Cuz I'm standing at The Doctor's TARDIS console.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:27 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas everybody!

    by Greg

    That is all.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 11:18 a.m. CST

    lynxpro - skipping regenerations?

    by Mister Vertue

    ...erasing the 5th - 7th Doctors from continuity because they just weren't as popular...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 11:37 a.m. CST

    Just over 24 hours to go folks!

    by Mister Vertue

    Are we excited yet? I am! Don't forget, keep your eyes and ears open for those Davison and Eccleston references. Might be obvious, might not be. Knowing my fellow Docbackers, they'll be very obvious. Will this be the last we see of the Doc between now and the new series? Maybe. Maybe not. We can't really be expected to wait nine whole months for something new, can we? CAN WE? Not a whole episode, but *something* to tide us all over. Maybe online. Maybe not. Time will tell.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 12:26 p.m. CST

    Rhoda the Rani's Reindeer

    by Perigee

    Had a timey-wimey nose; She lived on Miasimia Goria And caused the Cardiff Rift to close. All the Shadow Proclamation Thought the Doctor was to blame And even Convention 15 wouldn't stop the Judoon defame Anybody care to continue..?

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 1:15 p.m. CST

    to ralph hinkley

    by lynxpro

    I think the point of contention is Phil Segal is of the opinion that the owners of the warehouse had no right to sell the TV Movie props in the first place. That whole experience may have inspired him to produce "Storage Wars" which has been a gold mine for him along with all the other reality programs he now produces for Discovery/History/A&E channels...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 1:22 p.m. CST

    man of virtue

    by lynxpro

    If you watch one of the documentaries bundled on last year's TV Movie DVD release, it mentions how the BBC folks wanted nothing to do with Sylvester McCoy and wanted the film to start out with the 4th Doctor regenerating into the McGann Doctor. Phil Segal put his foot down on that suggestion. The BBC felt that none of the other former Doctors were well known in the US, and as I posted previously that was wholly the fault of the BBC itself which only seemed capable of marketing the Tom Baker era to PBS stations back in the 80s and early 90s. Very few PBS stations got to show all of the Classic Doctors back then... my local PBS station [KVIE 6] did get that opportunity but the Tom Baker episodes were the ones most often broadcast but like with most other PBS stations, later dumped Doctor Who because the BBC overpriced them when fandom got so popular. Even today, BBC Worldwide seems to think they can charge insane amounts for anything Doctor Who related here in the US. One of their execs a few years back made the asinine statement that American fans were so desperate for Who-related content that the BBC could charge $5 per episode for frikkin' Torchwood. Obviously, that exec wasn't aware of BitTorrent and what fans will go to when they feel like they're being ripped off. In retrospect, I hope that guy got mega fired. Then again, maybe he was the guy responsible for greenlighting Torchwood Miracle Day...

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 2:12 p.m. CST

    lynxpro - epub Who books

    by DoctorTom

    Unfortunately, I suspect the only ones out there in epub format now are the torrents. I've noticed that the BBC doesn't put any of its books for sale for the Nook (epub format) but have them for the Kindle. I noticed they were even going back on the Kindle and rereleasing digitally some of the EDA novels (so far, I think they've just been doing ones from Lance Parkin). Some individual authors might have their books available from their sites (but I suspect not, though). I don't know if any of the books have shown up in epub format in iBooks for the iPad.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 2:19 p.m. CST

    lynxpro - correction on that

    by DoctorTom

    from Barnes and Noble, they have one Missing Adventure - Empire of Glass by Andy Lane (1st Doctor, with Irving Braxiatel), for 99 cents. There's some Who-related books out in epub format - Mad Norwegian has released a couple electronically (Time, Unincorporated vol.1 - Lance Parkin, and the first volume of Running Through Corridors)

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 2:26 p.m. CST

    Seasons Greetings and Festive Salutaions to you all! :)

    by shibleybc

    To Merrick, To Docbackers , old and new, young and old, New Who and Old Who, and all those either +/- 12 hrs timezones from GMT :) This Docback started in a very small and quiet way after a certain Christopher Ecclestone uttered the words "Run for your life" Random and ad hoc it developed into a regular weekly discussion about a TV show we all care very deeply about! At first i watched on from my hiding place, enjoying the wild speculation and theories, the chat about how good/bad the episodes were from the previous week or how dodgy the sets were in "The Horns of Nimon" and often links to amusing (sometimes) videos turned up, i learned about tiny URL from this last bit  There is one other ingredient i observed, an ingredient in the mix that was most definitely a mouth watering! One night i returned from work and settled back with a bottle of shitty cheap wine (in joke) and started to read the docback and next thing you know i stripped off and jumped in! Over the next few weeks and months i joined in with multiple posting to get the docback higher up the charts, i first heard the word Gotilk and i marvelled at his obsession as well as falling in line with his efforts (by accident of course Merrick ;) ) I met Frozen and Axcel1 and Pogue and Handsome and we debated and poked fun at each other  At this point i must note that even in the early days the docback was a self moderating entity that looked after its own and shunned Trolls and offensive stuff  I made friends on facebook with some of these guys and they are still there today. Then season 5 came to an end and things went quiet........but the docback carried on, we assumed the guise of the four(ish, think Blake’s Seven) horsemen of the docalypse and started reviving all the previous episode’s docbacks (as they were now know amongst us,( i obviously lay claim to the patent and am awaiting news from my lawyers..........;) )) We resurrected old docbacks in reverse order, we debated, we speculated and poked fun at each other and had fun!  Then it went quiet, too quiet! Then Merrick arrived and season Six and things were different! Merrick i must thank you for what you have done for Who over the last twelve months, you have turned a rag tag bunch of misfit lovers of Who into a lean mean fighting machine :P Your posts are both brilliant and act as a superb springboard for lively discussion, you are informative and i am loving you going on a journey i made 30 odd years ago with the “wobbly” stuff  Please never give up, you have built a house around the dreams of a few folk and i salute you long may it grow and continue! Finally i wanna thank you all, you are the reason i “stripped off” and jumped in, you are a marvellous set of complete and utter fruitcakes  From the aforementioned lot to Sam Jackson’s (lovely chap) Wig to V’shael, Pogue Mahone, Gotilk resurrected and MOV (is he really the Moff?), Perigee, Handsome, Protocol417, Hornosilk etc etc etc I Salute you all, this docback is a lovely place to come and although circumstances restrict my time posting i still grab a quick check on where things are, particularly so as we approach the Christmas special. For those of you for whom things are not good i send my best regards and best wishes over the festive period and for those of you that this isn’t your festive period bare with it, rampant commercialism will be over soon and things will get back to normal  Finally, i have a special place in my life for this forum for one last reason, but for that you must just have to guess  Love ya all, ya silly bastards  Live long and prosper ;) Simon Peace and Goodwill!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 2:27 p.m. CST

    ralph hinkley THANKS!

    by gotilk

    I'd have been freaking OUT being next to that. Wow! Nice.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 2:36 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    The best to you as well. Thank you for that well-thought-out holiday greeting. May you have the best Christmas and new year ever. Time for me to head over to early celebrations now. It's a strange year without any kids around at all. Even my nieces and nephews are all grown now. It is an odd feeling. Even last year we had stockings for the younger ones (19-25), but this year is the year of realization. Realization that I'd better get off my butt and get engaged with making a life again amidst all the oddness and near-tragedy. I have so much to be thankful for. My health and remarkable continued hold on some kind of youth beyond expectations and reality, re-connections with long-lost relationships. You name it. But the constant positive attitude and good will here has been so important to me this year and I'd like to just say.... Thanks.

  • What a remarkable place this is, and has been since first I noticed it two series ago. There is no place more temperate, no inhabitants more kind, and no conversation more inviting; the Docbacks are unique not only on AICN, but by the standards of even more robust WhoMunities like Gallifrey Base. I am not sure which I miss more during the void between seasons - the series, or the friends I share it with here. I may not have the background to add much to these off-season discussions, but know that I never miss one - and kabitz when I'm feeling especially homesick. ~grin~ To each and every one of you, I send my affection and best wishes for the coming year.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 3:43 p.m. CST

    A Merry Doctor Who Christmas To You, Too

    by HornOrSilk

    To you, to you, and to you -- dear reader of this comment.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 4:19 p.m. CST

    Merrick, the CD can be bought in the US @

    by GenreBoy

    "Who North America", i found them through Underground toys, been searching like a madcap fool for it for a day an age it seems, pretty reasonable price too. It's in the audio section. I ordered it, my fav tune that i heard online is "A Majestic Tale" from day of the moon, It's massive and amazing, A bit like "Words win wars" but with more choir, if that were possible haha. Have a very Merry Christmas, we're all nearly half way out of the dark.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 5:18 p.m. CST

    I have to tak back parts of my last post... well ONE part...

    by wtriker1701

    Tonight, I actually think I SAW Santa and his Reindeer Slide... around 5:26 p.m. (Bremen time...) It was wonderful! I KNEW it could have been no plane, no Sky Lantern... in fact, it could have been a meteor, so they say. And THAT on Christmas Eve.... Or was there another CHRISTMAS INVASION I'm not aware of, yet...? That ...Thing... was real and it was kind of beautiful... Have a good time!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 5:19 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    It's "shitty white wine", dear ;)

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 5:20 p.m. CST


    by notspock2

    my friend in berlin saw the same thing!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 7:10 p.m. CST

    Merry Christmas!

    by The_Mad_Groper

    I just wanted to pop in long enough to wish you all a Merry Christmas! It is my sincere wish that you all get to spend time with those you love and cherish. May you all be safe and happy!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 7:12 p.m. CST

    doctortom, thanks...

    by lynxpro

    That's what I figured...the BBC must've yanked all that formerly *free* content in order to sell it via the Kindle... I swear they had it originally in ePub format on the website but maybe my mind is playing tricks on me and it was probably only available in HTML and/or PDF...

  • The Master character should be the deadliest villain in the whoverse. For some reason the character always underperforms. I hope that the writers finally figure out how to make the character interesting.

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 9:23 p.m. CST

    A Very Merry Timey Wimey Christmas to You All!

    by Terry

    Good evening everyone, Just wanted to wis h you all a very merry Christamas this year. And to my friends that may celebrate a bit differently, I hope your festive season is a happy one spent with friends and family. Thank you to Merrick for all he has done for us this year. My friend, your hard work is greatly appreciated and I thank you for making this a wonderful palce to visit and share with friends. To MOV, Your insights, clues, tips, and tricks have been a pleasure to read all year. Thank you for taking the time from what I am sure is a hectic life and schedule to share all that you do with us. To my fellow Docbackers, Thank you for proving that there is an intelligent, thoughtful, fun and caring place left on the web for people to share a common love. Intelligent conversation and debate is alive and well thanks to you all. May you all have a Joyous Holiday and I wish you the best for the New Year. Now, bring on the Christmas Special, I need me some Doctor Who for the Holiday's!!! Phineas999

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:10 p.m. CST

    Ye Olde Console

    by Kevin Kittridge

    Lynxpro... all that legal stuff is way over my head. I guess it's entirely possible. I'm just glad it's close enough for me to touch! Fun, fun, fun!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:18 p.m. CST

    Merry Christmas everyone, here is a present...

    by Kevin Bolinger

    from The Breaux Show and myself! The Breaux Show Christmas Special, with a guest appearance by a certain Time Lord from Gallifrey! Let this tide you over till the real Doctor Who Christmas episode airs tomorrow. For everyone here...Happy Holidays to all!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:19 p.m. CST

    Ok...I am dumb at times...

    by Kevin Bolinger

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:20 p.m. CST

    Damn did it again!

    by Kevin Bolinger my excitement to post the link, I...forgot to post the link :P So, here it is, The Breaux Show Christmas Special, with the Doctor!

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:41 p.m. CST

    The Doctor and Christmas

    by veteran_of_mu

    Typing from a dark hotel room on the other side of the planet, my sleeping child already communing with visions of sugar plums, I thought I'd turn in a Christmas HAT, my first I believe. Up thread we have a short exchange over why the Doc celebrates Christmas when he is quite evidently no Christian. Mov dismissed this as a little foolish, but I think it's actually a very good question. We have all wished, at one time or another, that people would treat each other as well the rest of the year as they do at Christmas. It's an occasion where we all get to be a bit more than human. We take a step away from the struggle for existence and participate in the great traditions that link us all together. I think Christmas is a large part of the reason the Doctor cares about humans. I think it's the part of us he wishes to nurture, a bright coal glowing in the dead leaves of our usual mutual indifference and paranoia. No knock to non-Christians - I'm no Christian myself - but if you don't celebrate Christmas you're missing a fundamental experience of intellect and romance. It's the same experience the native Americans used to call potlatch and the ancient Greeks saturnalia. It's an event at which we give lavish gifts and share the best stored vittles, sing songs and renew the bonds of family and friendship, not from any sense of obligation, but to express our natural state of loving kindness, wit and nobility. It's who we really are. Call it Hanukah if you like, or Kwanzaa or even Festivus, so long as you celebrate it with gifts and feasts and songs and laughing children, it's the same. So the Doctor calls it Christmas, not because of Christ, but because the Tardis translates everything into a language and cultural context the Doctor"s companions understand, and the companions are all almost exclusively British lasses with Christmas traditions. Can't blame the Doc for that. You could blame Sexy. But I wouldn't advise it. The doc might overlook you blaming people at Christmas tim

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:45 p.m. CST

    Part 2 of the Christmas HAT

    by veteran_of_mu

    ... e - but Sexy wouldn't. [damn iPad keyboard ...]

  • Dec. 24, 2011, 10:54 p.m. CST

    Happy Christmas, you Brits

    by FeralAngel

    And thanks for giving us Yanks the gift of Who.

  • ..... I'll explain later.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 12:25 a.m. CST


    by gotilk


  • Dec. 25, 2011, 12:46 a.m. CST

    darthdevious does it again...

    by gotilk

    Great way to cap a great Christmas eve! That was a lot of fun. Have a great holiday weekend!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 1:18 a.m. CST

    Have a good one y'all...

    by dj_bollocks

    I would have gone for... 12 Regenerations 11 Billie Pipers 10th Planet complete 9th Doctor Dances 8 <insert your own here> 7 Sonic Screwdrivers 6 <insert your own here> 5 Murray Gold's 4 Geronimo's 3 Allons Y's 2 Romanadvoratrelundar's and Alan Partridge as Doctor 13 And lynxpro if you sign up at you'll see all the published books as either pdf's or epub's - Happy Christmas !

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:12 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas from Santa Doc

    by HornOrSilk

    Another classic youtube video

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:20 a.m. CST

    And if you want to be need of a shrink.. watch this Christmas video

    by HornOrSilk Warning: Davros Dancing with the Ood

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:27 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas, Sam!

    by HornOrSilk

    Enjoy The Wardrobe tonight!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 12:29 p.m. CST

    Merry Christmas to all!

    by Minque

    Merry Christmas to all the Docbackers, and especially MOV and Merrick! From someone who reads every entry but rarely posts, I wanted to say that you make each day brighter and more fun. I am sure that there are many more like me, who simply enjoy but also truly appreciate this site. Have a wonderful 2012!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 12:51 p.m. CST

    Merry Xmas Whovians and Talkbackers.

    by s0l

    Currently flopped on the couch waiting for my Dinner to digest... T-10 mins will Doctor Who... Just enough time to wake up and grab a beer and some chips'n'dip before it starts... ^__^

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 1:16 p.m. CST

    11 minutes in and...

    by buggerbugger

    ...I'm already fed up of 'Doctor Who' being a cross between 'Harry Potter' and 'Nanny McPhee'. Maybe it'll get better once the Doctor stops smugly repeating "I know" (because saying, "I know" is cool!)...

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 1:52 p.m. CST

    The hunt for a redeeming feature starts here.

    by Octavian

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2 p.m. CST

    Hello, everyone!

    by The Transformed Man

    I've been lurking but not commenting much lately. Life is weird at the moment. Still here though! Can't wait for tonight!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:13 p.m. CST

    Best Christmas Special Ever !!

    by 2LeggedFreak

    Well its not saying much really when you look at some of the other Christmas "dahn Peckham" type stories or sleigh riding sharks but I quite enjoyed it. Madge and her family were good companions and whilst the plot felt very very thin it was enjoyable except for the Doctor being a bit ineffectual-- Bill Bailey was sadly underused as well. Not the worst hour of telly ever but not the best 6/10

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:25 p.m. CST

    Got the 5th Doctor reference... *spoilers*

    by Captain Howdy

    ... about the Androzani harvester, but missed the one from the 9th. Still taking stock of my feelings about tonight's episode, but it's a solid addition to the ever-growing list of Christmas specials. I'll be re-watching it, tomorrow, once the fog of port and turkey has finally cleared.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:26 p.m. CST

    Just finished, and ....

    by Dalius

    Generally a very sweet episode. But the best bit by far was Bill Bailey and gang - these guys need their own show. Oh, and the bit with the stairs being broken. And the trivia bit is that Madge's husband was played by Alexander Armstrong, who is (was) the voice of Mr. Smith in the Sarah Jane Adventures. Have a great New Year talkbackers and all at AICN.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:31 p.m. CST

    Oh, and did anyone spot ....

    by Dalius

    That the walker, and soldiers, were from Androzani (presumably Androzani Major)? Is this the same evil corporation responsible for the mining in "The Caves of Androzani"? Or was it just a case of quoting old episodes for the sake of it?

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:35 p.m. CST

    That was really terrible

    by photoboy

    I'm afraid I really didn't enjoy that. It was overly sentimental and sappy, the main plot was just silly (did the trees grow that spaceship that could travel through time using the power of thought?) and Moffat seems to be so in love with his dialogue now that it's getting unbearable. He needs to stop referring back to "timey-wimey" (this time with human-y woomany), it might have been clever once, although I never really cared for it, but now it's just an annoying crutch. Worse still, Matt Smith has lost the measured eccentricity he had in his first series and has tipped over into an over-the-top and manic persona. I had enough of that during Tennant's era, I really wish Smith would tone it down back to his original performance as that was much closer to how the Doctors were in the classic series and was much easier to watch. Humbug. :(

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:40 p.m. CST

    Liked it...

    by Ace of Wands real reservations other than it is the type of episode that will only really ever work as a Christmas Special but since that is what it actually was there isn't really a problem. As a Brit I could have done without Alexander Armsrtong as the Pilot/Father but only because it reninded me of his and Ben Miller's WWII RAF Pilot banter sketches from their comedy show. Some great lines, particularly early on, both kids were excellent as was Claire Skinner and I loved the ending with coda. The Tardis, as ever, is fucking awesome, even just sitting there.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 2:59 p.m. CST

    I'd love to rate the episode but I fell asleep after 15 minutes

    by catlettuce4

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 3:22 p.m. CST

    OK episode **spoilers**....


    ..DEFINITELY not as good as last years Christmas special. The central story seems to take a while to get going and then resolved very conveniently. I'm with photoboy in not swallowing the 'tree/angel/space-faring alien' nonsense. Is this really the best Moffatt can come up with? We know & expect the Doc to put the people he gets into contact with in peril, but in this story he decides to take a recently widowed mum of two (plus kids) to a planet that is going to be vertually destroyed by corrosive acid rain? WTF? (yes, I know it's only a story!) It also annoys me the way the TV constantly recycles the same actors over and over again when suppose to be the case that something like 90% of actors are out of work at any time. It takes me out of the story when when the main guest stars are well known on other shows. Not to be completely grinchy, I DID enjoy the Doc calling on Amy (Amy referring to River as a 'good girl' was especially sweet-we should have had more of this in the last season). Anyway, Merry Christmas to all!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 3:24 p.m. CST

    A sweet episode...

    by Peter

    ...and very much in the spirit of Christmas. I very much enjoyed it!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 3:27 p.m. CST

    Minutes away!!

    by gotilk

    Wooo-hoo! And then.... later... in SD on BBC America. They should fix that. We need BBCA in HD.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 3:36 p.m. CST

    Oh, and one more Merry Christmas

    by gotilk

    and happy holidays/new year to you all, and all you love. This is going to be a great year. (and a long wait) I look forward to our DocBacks this year. And many future fart machines.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 4:36 p.m. CST

    Yes, we know the Slitheens have taken over the Dockbacks

    by HornOrSilk

    Fart machines indeed ;)

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 4:46 p.m. CST

    Four to Doomsday, eh?

    by HornOrSilk

    Just trying to figure out all the 5th Doctor refs.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 4:57 p.m. CST

    But the Black Panther isn't too happy with one comment

    by HornOrSilk

    Or is he?

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 5:11 p.m. CST

    maybe not as good as last year's

    by jon pertwee

    but still, fun, and a bit of a tearjerker at the end.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 5:18 p.m. CST

    The 9th Doctor reference

    by Dataset

    He said he'd met a forest once and she "fancied" him. That was The Forest of Cheem from "The End of the World" episode.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 5:24 p.m. CST

    Steven Moffat?

    by DrMeyer

    I know you're here, and I have two words... Thank you. A few more, too. Mostly good job, keep on, you're doing a btrilliant job, I loved the ending, I want more. An old fart in Nashville, who's been a Whovian most of his life, loves your work and insists on more. And again, thank you.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 5:26 p.m. CST


    by DrMeyer

    I know I got repetitive, you lot pay no attention, that wasn't for you.

  • PERFECT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 5:41 p.m. CST

    Anyone else think there is something Sontaran with the tree ship?

    by HornOrSilk


  • Dec. 25, 2011, 6 p.m. CST

    I bet River shows up every Christmas

    by HornOrSilk


  • Dec. 25, 2011, 6:06 p.m. CST

    This year's special seemed to whizz by.

    by Nerfee

    Some nice moments but I wished for more... something.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 6:45 p.m. CST

    gee, that whizzed by...

    by notspock2

    Didn't much rate it on first viewing, my first impression was that it was a bit light and the threat was somewhat inconsequential, however I thought that about last years and on revisiting that, I thought it was probably the strongest Christmas episode yet.. Anyway, I am in too much of a good mood to be critical- I loved the ending and a whole bunch of other stuff, maybe I'll give some proper thoughts after my second viewing.. Merry Christmas Everyone!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:03 p.m. CST

    Oh man oh man....this hurts...

    by gotilk

    I have the episode and things keep happening here (good things). I still have not seen it. Watch me stuck seeing it in SD on BBCA first. lol That's what I get for getting it early by more nefarious means. Karma. But it just looks SO good in HD!! Especially these last couple of years. Reminder to BBCA viewers. Be sure to DVR it, watch it live and re-watch within 2 days for the ratings (if that works, and I think it does). What I do is... even if I cannot actually *re-watch* it again within 2 days, I just let it play in the background while I do other things so that it counts. Glad to see so much positive response! I will read more later.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:10 p.m. CST

    $3,999.95??? Dammit, MOV...

    by Perigee

    I said to tell them to keep the price Down!! Anybody with the cutter is welcome - I'll wait for the wide release. Haven't seen the epi yet - still not home. BBL!

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:20 p.m. CST

    Not bad ... but not great.


    Much like the last series it kept its head above water and was perfectly entertaining and festive but when all is said and done it was just a bit average ... I thought the strongest part this year was the acting ... The kids were great and it refreshing to be able to really focus on Smith without the 'Ponds' involved.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:41 p.m. CST


    by The Transformed Man

    You're in Nashville? I used to live in nearby Bowling Green, KY. I discovered Doctor Who when PBS showed Tom Baker episodes late Saturday nights sometime around 1985.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 7:42 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Wow, indeed that price appears a little bloated, even for what it is... which is marvelous. Maybe 800 bucks, I could understand. But I'll be waiting for the wide release as well. Must admit they make some fine things though. Truly. I would love to see a miniature TARDIS interior, or several of them. In very fine detail, with moving/working parts.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 8:16 p.m. CST

    Man, I love Matt Smith.

    by The Transformed Man

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 8:43 p.m. CST

    Pretty good episode. I'll have to wait till next fall for Dr who :(

    by mistergreen

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 9:42 p.m. CST

    I really enjoyed the episode! - spoiler (just in case)

    by Terry

    I think the last scene was perfect. Matt Smith beautifully showed the surprise, wonder, and joy of the realization that the Doctor truly is loved and wanted. The episode as a whole did exactly what I wanted, which was make me smile, laugh, and sit back and have fun. Thank you The Moff and everyone else involved with the special. A lovely Christmas gift from you all. And I am sorry, but I really can't think of any Doctor and companion that have a better on screen chemistry than Matt and Karen. I am REALLY going to miss that. Look at that last scene again and tell me it didn't effect you too.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 9:47 p.m. CST

    I found that truly moving. (spoiley-ish)

    by gotilk

    Very nice episode! Made me feel all warm and tingly. Especially the ending. Nice to see The Doctor getting a moment of pure happiness. Yeah, when she said... *Ohhh... because we always do* Got a bit choked up. I'm a sap. A proud sap. And the tree people are a perfect example of why Confidential will be so sorely missed. I'd really like to see how they did those. They looked amazing. And what a great beginning!!! Truly thrilling throughout. BRAVO! I missed the *The Doctor returns soon in TIME TO BURN(Rome)* or something or other. *ahem* And now we have to wait how long? Eep. Oh well. Time to dive back into the classics! That really capped off the holiday nicely, even if I had to wait for-friggen-ever to finally sit down and watch it.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 10:29 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I have to agree. The chemistry is just perfect between them. And I think Rory also has so much more to offer. It will be sad to see them go. That last scene really had an effect on me. Strong moment. This is going to be a long wait.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 10:33 p.m. CST

    Didn't like it.

    by cerberus

    It was so shameless and by the numbers that it felt like something you would see on the Hallmark channel.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 10:41 p.m. CST

    I'm going to re-watch it when everyone has gone to bed.

    by gotilk

    With the lights off and curled up with a girlfriend substitute. NO... no that kind. I mean like a Slanket. You dirty, dirty DocBackers you!! And BONUS... when I'm done I can walk around the house chanting while I wear it with the hood on and anyone who wakes up will think the home has been invaded by a brightly-colored cult with a predilection for fuzzy slippers. Or I could pretend to be on Silver Eden. *sigh* Too much Egg Nog.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 10:58 p.m. CST

    If you didn't like this episode, then you're a

    by gotilk

    really great person who disagrees with me. I love this place.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 11:07 p.m. CST

    Where are you west coast US viewers?

    by gotilk

    Come on! You know you loved it. Did almost everyone seriously see it early? I blame providers that only carry BBC-A in SD. It's a blurry mess. Call your cable/satellite providers and demand BBC-A in HD! Dish Network, Time Warner cable and Cox Communications (cable) carry it in HD. Everyone else? Nope. (with the possible exception of smaller carriers) That includes DirecTV, who is about to lose a customer because of it. I'm fed up. They took too long to get AMC in HD. Now it'll probably be years before they get BBC-A in HD. These reality TV channels and crime themed channels I can understand. But BBCA is like a showcase for great HD programming. What a waste. We get things like REGIONAL sports in HD.... and Doctor Who in blurry SD. Blech! Sick of it. End rant. Call 'em and demand it. Nicely.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 11:10 p.m. CST

    Also not a huge fan of this one.

    by Darth_Nader

    I thought the beginning was a great start. The mother helping the angel/alien, and the Doctor 'making some improvements' to the house. But the 'box' thing kinda ruined it for me. At first I thought they were going to retread the kid's closet from the one with the killer toys. Keeping running this through your head. The trees were 'advanced' enough to make a ship that could enter the time vortex, and they were afraid of acid rain? Too much smaltz. I did like the very ending. I am trying to figure out how old Amy is at this point. He seems to skip a couple of years each time.

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 11:21 p.m. CST

    Finally got a chance to watch it...

    by Kevin Bolinger

    I really enjoyed it, very moving. The end almost brought a tear to my eye! Matt Smith, brilliant as always! The Moff gave us another winner! Loved the 5 and 9 references, very nice indeed! It will be a very long wait till we get new Who :(

  • Dec. 25, 2011, 11:48 p.m. CST

    Best Doctor Who Christmas Special EVER.

    by ToughGuyRizzo

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 12:11 a.m. CST

    I quite liked it.

    by The Transformed Man

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 1:28 a.m. CST

    Liked the Pondy end especially...

    by Perigee

    Which is kind of a scary end to go out on; the chemistry of that set of characters is so strong (compared to the rest of the episode where Smith is out on a loose end somewhere) that it makes me worry whether they can really center 11 without the Ponds in tow. The Doctor was back to the same Cat In A Hat formlessness I found him in the last Proms: Pirouette. Mug. Technobabble. Wave the sonic. Swoop around. Do slapstick. Be serious. Caper. Eccleston Could have been a great Solo Doctor - his character had an internal focus. Tennant needed people to play off, but as long as he had somebody, he could move forward. Smith's Doctor Needs someone he cares about to put him in drive - otherwise he seems to just flutter around in neutral.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 4:28 a.m. CST

    Very good... with spoilers

    by dj_bollocks

    Bit slow to build and randomy but well worth it in the end.... Nice and heartwarming and full of the joys of Christmas, rather than some of the messes of the past - and no pantomime this year. In just some of the looks, especially the brief look to camera as the kids open their presents at the end when the Doctor quietly looks on Matt Smith just owns this role with such an assured confidence. And the end, perigee you might want to put a spoiler tag for sensitive types, very nice, blue door, we always make a place. Just a nice piece of Christmas telly surrounded by fuck awful soaps and other shite ! Reminded me a bit of The Box Of Delights as well for those of you that remember that ! Have a great rest of your Christmas and New Year - see you in 2012

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 6:16 a.m. CST

    Not bad but not great

    by Candy ass monkey suit

    An ok xmas special but nothing earth shattering. Ive learnt by now that the xmas specials are by far my least fave who's of the year and this year was no different, what bugs me about the whole xmas special ep is that why does it always have to be set at xmas? The tennant specials which he bowed out didn't overly enforce the xmas aspect and were just like a normal ep for the most part but i hate all these fairy tale like guff moff is putting out now. And to the BBC please don't keep blowing all the series budget on the xmas special!

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 6:34 a.m. CST

    I didn't like it (spoilers)

    by I am not a number

    Started out ok, and the ending with Amy and Rory was great, but the main story just felt perfunctory. A bunch of trees not only grew into a tower, but also grew into a space/time vessel? Did they grow the fuel for takeoff as well? How did the trees produce the metal headband? The three dimwits from Androzani Major were so cartoonish that I could not buy into those characters at all, and the mother's reaction (or lack thereof) to everything going on didn't ring true at all. Worst of all, I found it boring. Not the worst Christmas special, but it did increase my appreciation for last year's effort.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 8:47 a.m. CST

    Not as good as last year's, but still

    by clupula

    better than The Christmas Invasion and the Titanic one. I have to say that the mother's reactions to things occasionally seemed very unrealistic. Still, there were some solid Matt Smith moments, especially his physical comedy with the backwards spacesuit and his realization that the sonic screwdriver wouldn't work at all because the entire building was wood. The moment at the end, though, was a mixed bag for me. 1) I loved that the moment with Amy and Rory. My two favorite companions, by far. 2) However, if he is trying to lay low, nowadays, wouldn't parking the TARDIS outside the home of his two most recent companions be counterproductive?

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 9:14 a.m. CST

    Thought last years was better, but still enjoyed it

    by batmancw

    Though the episode started kinda slow & the "I know" bit did get old, I found myself enjoying it more and more as the episode progressed. It was a nice "sweet" Christmas episode, and Madge's scolding that sent him to visit Amy & Rory was a great way to end the episode. It's nice for the Doctor to know that his mother & father in laws "always" set a place for him at their table.

  • Christmas Invasion takes the 3rd place for me. I loved this one, though, very much. Had a great warmth - and a very Christmas feeling. I found Claire Skinner, though, a little bit cold throughout... couldn't really connect to her... The children, both, were great! Matt Smith was awesome - and his great, warming, assuringly performance was the bond all the time. Loved The Androzani Reference verry mucho!!! But the best part goes to... THE PONDS!!! Hell, I would have loved me even some River appearance, if also for just one or two sentences like Rory. It would have been a complete Family Reunion! So sad, they'll be leaving. I wished, they'd have guest appearance through the next seasons "from time to time"... such a great chemistry... It's been a 4 star journey (out of 5)... not dwelling on action nor running... but silently being enjoyed. The award for the best Christmas Special still goes by far to Mr. Dickens and Co. Have a nice evening/day!

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 12:28 p.m. CST

    This Xmas special is one of the few

    by Ian

    missteps this show has made since the 11th least for me. Awesome that so many had fun with it though!

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 1:14 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Love the name!

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 1:15 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    A Christmas Carol is hard to beat, huh?

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 2 p.m. CST

    I Liked This Episode

    by proper

    I was a bit "Oh here we go, oh no" & then I was "I'm enjoying this" Ending with "Ah That's touching" when the Doctor turned up for his tea. There's Room For These Kind Of Episodes,& after the Titanic "special" I'm Grateful ;>. Merry Christmas All AICN Crew & This Space's Inhabitants,I Declare The Powers Of The Doctor Who Talkbacks Can Overturn Any Doom Propechies In 2012.....Happy New Year, Let's Go!!!!!!!!!!

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 2:11 p.m. CST

    As much as I love the Ponds…

    by Vektorix

    …and the chemistry between Amy and Rory and The Doctor, I would rather Mr. & Mrs. Pond be left here in happiness (with a place set for The Doctor every Christmas) than have some heartbreaking sad end for them sometime during Season 7. They're The Doctor's family and best friends (and in-laws), it would be nice to know that whatever trials and evils The Doctor faces in the future, that at home, on the planet he's put such a lot of work into, there IS a home, always.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 2:26 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    They're good, but I like Alien Entertainment better. It doesn't hurt that their physical store is in my area, and they are a major player in ChicagoTARDIS... but it is about as close as you'll get to a Whovian paradise this side of the Atlantic. Actually, they had just as much, if not more, Who merch than Forbidden Planet in London.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 2:35 p.m. CST

    Huge WELCOME to all the names I have not seen here before!

    by gotilk

    Welcome to the DocBack. Stick around! Pleasure to meet you all.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 3:08 p.m. CST

    by glenn_the_frog

    Now and then, every once in a very long while, every day in a million days, when the wind stands fair and the Doctor comes to call... everybody lives.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 3:10 p.m. CST


    by DrMeyer

    Yepm in Nashville, down the road a jot from the Corvette Plant. But PBS wasn't where I was exposposed to the Doctor first. That may be blamed jointly on WGN Chicago, and Harlan Ellison, who spoke of visiting Michael Moorcock, who pushed down to sir in front of the TV and said, "Shut up and watch". I figured anything that could get Harlan to shut up and pay attantion was worth seeing. My first episode was Tom Baker and "Robot"; I think it was so for a lot of people...

  • I can't believe the same Moffat that wrote Blink also wrote that.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 4:27 p.m. CST

    although thank god we've got the return of Sherlock next week!

    by TheSeeker7

    I'm quite anxious to see the portrayal of Irene Adler.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 4:33 p.m. CST


    by Noel

    That has to be my favourite Who Christmas Special yet. It had a proper dramatic plot and a decent story. The location was Christmassy AND relevant to the plot. The guest cast were well used and the resolution wasn't just about Doctorish techobabble. Loved it! Also loved the Androzani reference.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 4:59 p.m. CST

    The Christmas Special *mild spoilers*

    by Renee Knowles

    I didn't particularly care for it myself. I'm a huge fan of the Moffat era, and Matt Smith is in my opinion one of the best Doctors ever. Also, I usually have no issues with the whole suspension-of-disbelief thing, but there were too many things that took me out of the story. Right off the bat... the Doctor hurtling through space with no TARDIS, no spacesuit, nothing. It's the first time I've ever called BS on an episode of Doctor Who. While the premise was interesting, the whole first half was far too The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe to me (yes, I know that was the point)... but it destroyed the whole "alien planet" concept for me. The Doctor madly running through the house bit was fun, but a tad too over-the-top. *mild spoiler* Madge told her kids that their father would be home for Christmas. She also told the Doctor that she wasn't going to tell them what really happened to their father until AFTER Christmas. So what happens when Dad doesn't show? "The three dimwits from Androzani Major were so cartoonish that I could not buy into those characters at all, and the mother's reaction (or lack thereof) to everything going on didn't ring true at all." I couldn't agree more. The bit where she was crying and whining about it being Christmas had me cringing. I also had trouble with the ultimate purpose of the tower (trying to remain as spoiler-free as possible). It seemed very implausible that the trees would "grow" a you-know-what. After their getaway, once Madge had, shall we say, cleared her head... the explanation by the Doctor of where the trees had gone to was a bit throw-away and schmaltzy at the same time. My last little niggle is a bit of a strange one. While I loved how they treated the news of the father's death, and that brilliant conversation between Madge and the Doctor where they discussed why she hadn't told the kids yet... the resolution of this plot point left me disappointed. I know Christmas specials are supposed to be happy and all but I think I would have had a rather bittersweet one instead of what actually happened. Then again, I'm weird. But now for the things I DID like :) Yes, the ending. The other one, the one with Amy and Rory, not the one mentioned above. Loved it :) The whole conversation between the Doctor and Madge about why she wasn't telling the kids until after Christmas. That was very sweet and heartbreaking. The trees that grew ornaments... very cool. The childrens' bedroom. I loved everything about it... especially where they slept. I want that room! :) The stairs were broken "Guess we'll have to /walk/" delivered with that perfect dripping-with-childish-distain voice that Matt Smith does sooooo well. Hilarious! But overall... I thought the writing was poor, and well below Moffat's normal standard. The characters were not well-developed, either. A lot of wasted potential, and in fact, I'm pretty close to saying that this is my least favorite episode of the Moffat era.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 5 p.m. CST

    Here are my thoughts.

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    I liked it for a Christmas episode. Now would I say it is better than some of the previous Christmas But I will say that this episode is better than all the other Christmas episodes in one aspect.....that it is written for children. This episode was made for children, and the story is very simple/easy to follow. The Christmas episodes from earlier seasons are not really kid friendly as to the story telling, they were written for adults, with the exception of last years Christmas episode. What I liked: Matt Smith, this episode really shows that The Doctor, for being 900 + years is really just a big kid at heart. The story for what it is. What I disliked: The short role that Bill had. The CGI at the beginning where the Doctor falls to Earth.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 5:02 p.m. CST

    lisab - YES EXACTLY!

    by Renee Knowles

    You described my own dissatisfaction with the resolution of the secondary plot regarding the father quite well.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 5:07 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    I'm done with this show until Stephen Moffat leaves and they get a writing team that isnt so impressed with its own supposed cleverness.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 5:50 p.m. CST

    You can tell bad fantasy from a reluctant writer ...

    by MichaelH

    when the story insists that all you have to do is believe and the fantastic will come true. Its the Lost and Battlestar Galactica creators telling us that we don't understand its just a story, and a lowly scifi story at that, when we complain about the endings. But no, good story telling is internally consistent, and bad story telling is just the mark of a writer that doesn't give a damn. Sorry folks, but this may have been the announcement that Moffet has grown tired of Who. The good stuff of the story was formula, and the bad was just disrespect for the genre.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 6:03 p.m. CST

    Well 8.9 million watched it...

    by dj_bollocks

    admittedly down from 10.3 million last year...

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 6:35 p.m. CST

    Humany Wumany... Yuck!

    by Jawsh Murdock

    Not a bad episode overall, but non spectacular. I'm ready for a new head writer. Let Moffatt write individual episodes where he was the best. Also, wanna see 11 work apart from Amy and Rory.

  • and yea I forgot to mention this detail before, since when in the hell can the Doctor survive in open space???

  • The 5th Doctor did it, for a short period. The Peter Davidson Doctor had to get the the Tardis parked outside a space ship. He said it was a Time Lord thing. The Tom Baker Doctor did it too, but in self induced suspended animation.

  • and correct me if I'm wrong, but to the best of my knowledge, the one "limitation" we knew them all to have, no matter where they came from, is they needed a self contained oxygen environment in which to breath, they couldn't safely exist in the vaccuum of space without cover.

  • When he tell the widow he is so much older and beyond caring, And that humans cry when happy. Then at the end, He cries, How humany-wumany. And that Amy and Roroy always sat a plate for him, Like you do for a lost family member, Ahh so sweet. It warmed this grizzled heart. I sat snuggled with my sweety and my son and had a happy joyful hour, That I am sure Isome time in the future for would give anything to trade them. The worst hour of Dr. Who with my family, is better than most anything I can think of.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 10:24 p.m. CST

    Where do TARDISes come from Moffy-Woffy? (*SPOILERS*)

    by veteran_of_mu

    Dear Mr Moffatt, I liked the Pond ending just fine. And you know I have adored your run on DW. And I know you don't like cynics but really ... Madge is a hollow shell of a character, her kids cardboard and unless you squint really hard hubby has only one dimension. The wood nobles were a knock off of the weeping angels plus House from TDW. The rest pales to transparency by the inevitable comparison with CS Lewis. The real problem, however, is the basic premise, that the forest of Androzani can grow itself a TARDIS whenever it wants. And that it's perfectly satisfied with a human pilot rather than a time lord to pilot it ... I know dear Mr Moffatt that you maintain DW has no canon and can therefore accommodate any idea you like. But this particular idea was, really um, crappy-wappy. What to do? Unless you're really going to take the strands of last season and weave something coherent out of them, stop now. Give the show to Gatiss if you must - he's certainly no worse than the creator of TDTWATW. He's no better, either, but if you give the show to him it might afford you enough leisure to get your head right and turn out some real DW scripts again. Or give it back to RTD. No shame in that and he'd be happy to salvage some fred for a season or two. Then you can come back strong and we'll love you again.

  • Dec. 26, 2011, 10:27 p.m. CST

    Salvage some fred => salvage some cred.

    by veteran_of_mu

    Damned iPad spelling correcter!

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:14 a.m. CST

    Another crap Xmas episode


  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:18 a.m. CST

    And Matt Smith was irritating too.


    I'm not really a fan of Smith anyway but he wouldn't have been out of place in a Charlie Chaplin movie acting like that.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:20 a.m. CST

    Mind you....a lot of the new show is downright irritating.


    And that goes for the R.T.D. years too. I've seen more grown up shows on the kids tv channel.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:07 a.m. CST

    Who universe rules...

    by Patrick

    Don't get me wrong I love Doctor Who and maybe it is the low points that make the good episodes so good, but I would be prepared to take the risk that it is not. I can also appreciate that a show where they have various writers and such a large Who history that consistency is going to be hard to maintain, but I don't mean just consistency of the standard of stories or character traits but of the actual rules of the Who universe. So this maybe a whim or wishful thinking but I thought we could help out the writers with a simple list of rules their stories should not break. Basically it's a list of things that annoy me that should not be repeated, I would love others to add to the list. 1. Time travel should be exclusive to Time Lords. (feel free to steal time travel technology from said Time Lords, but trees doing it!!!), Time agents I could have bought if they were set up by Time Lords just to do menial stuff. 2. The general public at large should not know aliens exist and should be surprised when the few involved in the episode find out they do. (aliens crashing into Big Ben and most RTD specials..not allowed), Dalek Invasion of Earth I don't mind because it's in the future.) Having the public know takes it out of the universe we live in. 3. Doctor having Super Human powers is also a no for me. I could handle hypnotism and better powers of recovery and not being susceptible to human illnesses but some stuff RTD had him do was bad. 4. Please can we have some science behind the fiction, mixing all cures together so they cure everything..crap. And I am willing to forgive a lot, just give us something that could be remotely possible. over to you guys to add more..

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:07 a.m. CST

    At this point id prefer RTD

    by tomdolan04

    At least with him there wasnt this faux intelligence that surrounds Moff. That was terrible writing and im getting very bored that the writers think that because its Who they dont have to construct episodes with internal logic. Care to complain? Apparently you cant for 'its a family show'. <p> The offshoot is that i couldnt give a hoot about the resolution or story per se because i know their going to wave a magic wand and create a solution to the problem that hasnt in the slightest way been earned. I used to term Who as sci-fi however broad but now it isnt - its as light entertainment as strictly come dancing. No problem with that but it leaves you with an empty feeling

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:39 a.m. CST

    Whine, whine, whine, whine. Want cheese with that?

    by HornOrSilk

    Is this my favorite Christmas episode? No. But I understand it is as it is, and Christmas episodes tend to be more of this kind of magic/enchantment than anything else. All those complaints forget that the source material includes Narnia. The "crown" is like the ending of Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe --- connecting to the salvation of Narnia and the four kids finally making it to their thrones. The "time ship" is like a giant seed. We know in Doctor Who many species are able to throw things into time and space. It's limited, very limited; not anything close to a TARDIS. It can be thrown into the time stream, and it can be semi-controlled for one trip, but that doesn't mean the trees have great technology like the Time Lords -- anymore than our trees with their seeds have power to become airplanes just because they can have their seeds fly. Doctor Who fans -- please, stop and think. Doctor Who tries a little of everything. If you don't like one thing, wait for the next one. There is no need to make it sound like it's all over. It isn't. This was a good Christmas story for Christmas. Just because you don't have a sense of wonder anymore doesn't mean the world shouldn't have more of it.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:11 a.m. CST


    by tomdolan04

    Xmas episode - sure all bets are off in terms of turning up that enchantment as you say. But my issue is that with Who over the last few years is that 'magic' is becoming synonymous with 'crap weve written ourselves into a corner and need an out' <p> This worked to an extent (and im hungover typing from bed on my phone so ill put this crudely) during RTDs era because he did naff emotionally bombastic episodes well - but tonally Moff is simultaneously trying to get characters in the show to take oodles of scientific-Who lore seriously whilst also cheating with plot leaps of massive faith throughout series 6. Whether they call it magic or cures mixed together to cure all cures...<p> Just cause some detract doesnt make people whiners - im still a docbacker and watcher. Off now till new year, all the best everyone

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:41 a.m. CST

    Horn & Tom Dolam

    by dj_bollocks

    Love a good discussion... I put it down to this both RTD and The Moff (when writing Christmas eps anyway) invoke a bit of fantasy, wonderment etc into the stories, so much so that you might have to swallow some stuff with a pinch of salt. (And if you try to pick it apart you will find many faults with everything they try to do...) But RTD modus operandi was pantomime, it was camp, it was bombastic, and in the case of the Cyberman Christmas story it was ridiculous (personal opinion). Moff's past two Christmas stories have been a little less pomp, and a bit more subtle spirit of Christmas type stories and I have to say as Christmas fluff I'bve enjoyed them more before they don't shout "Are we enjoying ourselves yet !?" like RTD's did. Two different styles, one I have a preference for. Doctor Who Christmas specials are not meant to be torn apart with glee like the wrapping on the big day itself, and yes non of the Christmas Special's have been perfect, but this was a nice bit of Christmas fluff sandwiched between Soaps and Movies and despite it's flaws I really enjoyed it. Hope you can all find it in your hearts (x2) to enjoy it at the very least too.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:09 a.m. CST

    Advanced technology IS magic

    by HornOrSilk

    Machine and magic are cognates for a reason. Science comes out of the occult sciences and is about controlling the forces of nature. Advanced sciences which are beyond our understanding will appear as "magic." But that is something most good sci-fi writers understand. It's a part of what makes for advanced civilizations in sci-fi stories.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:40 a.m. CST

    as bad as this was, but let's not forget the overall point

    by TheSeeker7

    As much as I hated this Christmas episode, this is ultimately just one blip on an otherwise incredibly brilliant resume of writing by Moffat on this series. There's absolutely no reason to just trash him completely because of this.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 6:26 a.m. CST

    It was not bad!

    by HornOrSilk

    It wasn't the best, but come on, compare it to anything made in America for Christmas...

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 6:44 a.m. CST

    Writing by rote.

    by Octavian

    I've been saying for some time now that Moffat's gargantuan ego is damaging the show. I think this Christmas episode underlines that point clearly. He believes his own hype. For the first time I was also disappointed by Smith's OTT performance which was reminiscent of Tennant's gurning at its worst. Perhaps he was over compensating for the water thin gruel he was served up in the script. Moffat's career smacks of the Emperor's new clothes. He fails to deliver again and again, and although the times he has got it right have been wonderful I'm afraid those tales are very few and far between. He seems to think being a smartarse somehow compensates for decent storytelling. This was clear from the tag to the Sherlock trailer ("created by Stephen Moffat & Mark Gatiss..." according to the credits lest we forget) that followed Who's Xmas episode, "Secret Horns Lurk." The other trailer tags are apparently "Rush Relents Rock," "Run Rocks Shelter," "Reckless Nor Hurt," all anagrams - it sez 'ere - of Sherlock Returns, and all sloblock.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 6:59 a.m. CST

    Sigh. I want my old DocBack back

    by HornOrSilk

    Fun and cheery, not negative, negative, negative.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 9:03 a.m. CST



    Sorry if some of us have been a bit negative, but we are all entitled to our opinion. In my view, Moffatt is continuing his quest to turn the doctor into some sort of Mary Poppins type fantasy figure, appearing when a mother sobs or a child cries. WTF!?. Moff has been a lifelong fan, so now with his hand on the reins, he wants to turn the show into some kind of childrens 'Harry Potter' fantasy. I agree with an earlier talkbacker, the people who are cheering for these mediocre offerings cannot be true fans of the old WHO, as they are totally different animals. Throwing in the odd classic reference doesnt work for me! Ah well, if the sci-fi premise is watered down enough, maybe we'll get even MORE viewers! HAPPY CHRISTMAS!

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 9:12 a.m. CST

    siskokid not true Who fans?

    by HornOrSilk

    Who are you to judge that? Seriously? Some of the greatest, longest lasting fans love the Who of today.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 9:27 a.m. CST

    Oh, and if proof of the new WHO agenda was needed.....


  • Dec. 27, 2011, 9:30 a.m. CST

    Steven HAS been earning his money, hasn't he?


  • Dec. 27, 2011, 10 a.m. CST

    by Type 40

    Okay, it wasn't the best episode ever, but it was Cristmassy and gave us a somewhat solo adventure for the doc before the new series/season. I agree with patrikwards about some of his rules, particularly the bit about Timelords being the only time-travellers. Or at least the only competent, grand-scale ones. In my opinion, it does somewhat take away from the whole "timelord" thing when every man & his dog can slap on a thing on his/her wrist & they're time-travellers.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 10:13 a.m. CST

    Time Lords

    by HornOrSilk

    We must remember, they seemed to control time and space, and so looked after and prevented major advancements from others. Or so it seems. So in this way, without them to prevent the natural progression, clearly we will see more time traveling going on. However, it is not anywhere near the level of the Time Lords. The Time Lords are sensitive to time and the possibilities involved with their actions. Others are not. Time Lords are better at controlling outcomes and preventing paradoxes or destroying the "web of time." The others are more likely to get themselves into trouble because they can't sense the changes they do.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 10:38 a.m. CST

    Re. Horn

    by Type 40

    Yeah, that's true. Although I can't help but feel that it takes some of the mystique from the doc. But, as you say, it fits in with the current lack of Timelords in the universe. Anyway, after re-watching the Christmas special today, I must say it does make for a very nice Christmas present! I don't often post, but read the docback every week & have gotten a lot of satisfaction from the build-up! Thanks everyone!!

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 10:48 a.m. CST

    hes_the_man I think they are doing other mystique now

    by HornOrSilk

    Doctor Who? Season 25 is Season 50?

  • I have so many issues with comments like this I don't even know where to begin. The basic premise of DOCTOR WHO, since its earliest years, has allowed the show to be interpreted in a variety of means, through a number of tones. And nowhere has this flexibility been more evident than in the casting of radically different Doctors, each bringing substantially different personality traits and role interpretations to the table. And, in general, each re-casting of the role (somewhat naturally) brings about changes in the "vibe" of the show - sometimes introducing new show runners, each advancing their own unique visions or agendas as well. I.e. DOCTOR WHO has always been about change, and I'd even argue that the very essence of the show's heartbeat is just that. "Change." How does the Doctor change physically and spiritually? That's an exploration of the 'human' condition right there. How does he change those he comes into contact with? Another exploration of the hum,an condition? What is the price of any of these changes? How does the series itself change over the years? The list goes on. Taking all of this into account, I'd have to counter the assertion that "the people who are cheering for these mediocre offerings cannot be true fans of the old WHO" by suggesting that such comments themselves come from folks who don't fully 'get' WHO. Because diversity and re-interpretation has always been a part of the DW landscape, and it will be again someday. Just because one doesn't happen to like a showrunner's particular interpretation of WHO doesn't prohibit someone from loving what has come before, or what may come after. New WHO is not a bastardization, it's an interpretation. There have been other interpretations before, and more will come later. That's what this show is - a stream of differing interpretations. This ongoing evolution/mutation is one of the chief reasons DW endures. One of the primary reasons we keep talking about it and caring about it. Anyone reading this message has a 'favorite Doctor' and their 'favorite era. That doesn't make them any more, or any less, of a WHO fan because they prefer one interpretation over another. To suggest this is rather narrow and ludicrous. Personally, I am loving the Moffat/Smith era (ON THE WHOLE - as it certainly isn't flawless) and think The Moff's particular brand of energy is exactly what the show needs at this juncture in tis life cycle. Yes, it's a sometimes flawed energy and madness (see below), but I do not think it's *any* coincidence that DW has enjoyed a substantial increase in visibility in the global marketplace since The Moff and Smith came on board. Again, one might not enjoy the particular flavor they're selling...but there are PLENTY of people who embrace vintage WHO and new WHO both. Because, again, DW by its very nature has never been about being consistent in terms of...well...anything, really. For whatever it's worth, it's *sounding* like the next Season/Series of WHO will be closer to vintage episodes in terms of tones and gags and whatnot (per various Moffat interviews). Which, again, reflects an evolution or mutation of that ever-felxible WHO concept. This flexibility has pretty much been there since somebody had the balls to not only conceive of "regeneration,"and the unparalleled audacity to put it on screen and make it work. The moment when Hartnell changed into Troughton? THAT is the birth of *true* DOCTOR WHO, as far as I'm concerned. Because it set a concrete precedent that anything was possible, and all bets were off. Regarding inconsistency: I wasn't the biggest fan of this Christmas Special. But...pertaining to some of the macro criticisms mentioned above...television is very much a political game and above all a numbers game. Any long running series is going to have 'ups' and 'downs.' Some inarguably 'classic' (non DW) series are riddled with both 'high points' and 'bottom dwelling episodes.' It's inevitable, and logical, given the nature of television production and the practical and budgetary demands of time sensitive development. In DOCTOR WHO's case, the episodes which don't work as well sting a little more than lesser eps on other shows might- because so many of us are personally and deeply invested in it, and wish only the best for it. Many shows we become attached to...are shows we instinctively KNOW will only last three or four years. We approach those titles from a certain immediate, knee-jerk perspective. But DOCTOR WHO? Has been around longer than many readers of this forum have been alive. That's a lot of time for personal investment...and a broader base for perspective than an overwhelming majority of TV series can claim. Some shows we just watch. DOCtOR a relationship. Thus, yeah, it's sometimes a kick in the balls when a DW ep or era doesn't work out...but no one should be throwing the baby out with the bathwater, and all of us should keep our sights on 'the whole' of the experience. By way of analogy: do *any* of us have spouses or partners or offspring or pets who are 100% flawless and devoid of aggravating tendencies? If you answer 'yes,' I think more than a few suspicious eyebrows would be raised.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 11:39 a.m. CST

    Well Merrick went there....

    by dj_bollocks

    Fair play to you, you didn't shit on the negative posters, and as someone who did enjoy it I'm absolutely in support of anyone's opinion to love, loathe or leave it... I do think that everyone before casting the first stone should go back and watch The Christmas Invasion, The Runaway Bride, Voyage Of The Damned and The Next Doctor again and then tell us what you think... I really really hated all but The Christmas Invasion - which was really a regeneration story - and whilst I wasn't so keen on last year's either I appreciated what The Moff tried to do with it. If you talk about messy, RTD's Christmas stories have hardly been tied up in a bow... Even The End Of Time has enough ridiculousness to it although it doesn't particularly obsess too much with Christmas. Ranking Christmas stories ? I'll leave that up to you !

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 11:49 a.m. CST

    The damn thing made me cry!

    by FeralAngel

    Well, as good as "Christmas Carol" was, this beat it by a good British mile. And yes, I'm glad to be a totally different animal than those of you here griping about this wonderful terrific fantastic heartwarming magical special. I'm able to enjoy it for its own sake. I really like Madge. And the kids. It'll never happen, but wouldn't it be something if she and those kids became the next companions? It'd be a hell of a lot of fun if you ask me. Merry - oh sorry - Happy Christmas, Mr. Moffat. What a great gift for your viewers. And for Narnia fans. And for anyone who loves a great offbeat Christmas tale. May your days be merry and bright.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 11:55 a.m. CST

    Nothing would make me prefer R.T.D.


    Dr Who under Moffat's been more miss than hit but I thought the overwhelming majority of R.T.D. stuff was a load of badly written rubbish.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 11:57 a.m. CST

    There's definitely a damn Harry Potter vibe to it.


    And that ain't a good thing in my books.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:21 p.m. CST

    It's only been about change to a certain extent merrick


    You watch the best era (imo anyway).....the era from William Harnell to Tom Baker...and you'll see that it's all very, very similar. The Doctors and companions might have changed but the overall tone of the show was pretty consistent. Then when John Nathan Turner took over...the tone of the show gradually changed and then became more of a pantomime in the Mcoy era. When Dr Who becomes a parody......and the Doctor himself becomes a parody (like a lot of Matt Smiths Doctor...especially in the Doctor the Widow and the Wardrobe).....that's not a good thing. And Dr Who's not Harry sodding Potter.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:53 p.m. CST

    Ah the Potter comparison.

    by gotilk

    I get it. It had some children, and it... and it... and.. well... Hmm.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:56 p.m. CST

    Watched it a second time and still loved it.

    by gotilk

    Definitely a children's tale, but still really enjoyed it. If I decided to site down and pick it apart, it would fall apart in my hands like much of the beloved (by me as well) classic stories. I do have some specific gripes with some of the criticisms here, but ... I'll explain later.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:58 p.m. CST

    lordoflight -- there was a lot of change between the eras

    by HornOrSilk

    Not only do we have a big change in the personality of the Doctor for the first Doctor himself being shown on screen, causing his adventures and how they come about to change, the change to the Cosmic Hobo provided a significant change of how the show felt (read audience reactions). With the UNIT era, the show really had an even bigger change -- not just color episodes, but the Doctor being grounded, working with the military, dealing with threats on Earth more often than not. The Fourth Doctor has at least three different eras with significant differences. Early on is the "monster" era. Then we get the comedy era. Then we get JNT. No, the show was always changing. Always.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 12:59 p.m. CST

    Besides, I don't want to be a *true* fan of anything.

    by gotilk

    It would be like being a *real* musician or a *real* writer or a *real* painter... Bullocks. You either write, play music or paint. Or you do not. The results may be up for debate, but being a *true* or *real* anything is just silly. I find it to be cheap criticism. No offense intended, but I'm not wrong about that.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:02 p.m. CST

    Potter comparison

    by HornOrSilk

    Potter had old, wise men guiding children around. As did Narnia. Potter is like Narnia. This is based upon Narnia. It's a good thing. Fairy story is a good thing.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:04 p.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    Yeah. I can take it if people said, "This isn't the kind of story for me. Shrug. To each their own." But the denigration of the current crew of Doctor Who we see coming on here... something tells me something else is going on.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:05 p.m. CST

    Could someone explain to me how it was like Harry Potter?

    by glenn_the_frog

    And please, I insist that you must have actually seen or read Harry Potter if you're going to make that comparison. Is it because it had a sense of adventure, fun and joy? Because it had a happy ending where everyone lived? (Which is never the case in Potter) Is it because it stated in plain terms that, as we all know, mothers are magical and capable of anything? Would it have been better if there had been some technobabble about the second X chromosome and chemicals emitted from the womb during pregnancy? About how an ancient alien society distributed nanites into the trees a million years ago? If it had been the same exact virus from The Doctor Dances? If it was the same forest from Silence in the Library? Did the Doctor need to reverse the polarity of the neutron flow? Or could it just be as simple and whimsical as a Christmasey "Mothers are the right ones for this job." Personally, I found it was a fun idea of an episode, and Smith was having a blast as always. While not as strong as last year's Scrooge episode, but still, its what you want from a Christmas story, a little light, not too scary, some christmasey visuals, snow, some fun bits and a happy ending. The last minute or so was really touching, though it would have been PERFECT if River had been there as well.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:08 p.m. CST

    Sorry. Typo up there. Gotilk. My fingers do that often

    by HornOrSilk

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:08 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    That comparison to Potter at least makes sense, that's fair.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:11 p.m. CST

    glenn_the_frog Well, I can list how

    by HornOrSilk

    1) it's a story for the whole family 2) there is a wise old man guiding children 3) there are trees which grow their own christmas ornaments like you would expect at Hogwarts 4) women are strong Ok. There. But really I agree. The "it's like Harry Potter" is silly. I think it is just because it follows some similar angles as most children's adventure stories and some people just don't like magical adventures. For me, I revel in them. I, like Tolkien, want the great stories to be told.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:13 p.m. CST

    Read what I said hornorsilk


    Forget anything after Tom Baker.....that's imo when Dr Who went downhill. That's what I'm talking about. Of course there were changes here and there in the era from Hartnell to Tom Baker.......but it was still all very similar. Go and watch it. The Doctor might have changed but he was still very recognisible as a proper Doctor. He wasn't a parody like David Tennant, Matt Smith and to a lesser extent Eccleston.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:13 p.m. CST

    gotilk comparative work is what I do a lot of times

    by HornOrSilk

    So I can come up with them -- but you know, I think there was more Potter-like elements with "A Christmas Carol." I mean, Dumbledore was in it -- and he certainly played the part of a Dark Lord if you think of it... ;)

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:14 p.m. CST


    by Merrick

    *** something tells me something else is going on *** What's your take on this? I have a theory...

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:15 p.m. CST

    hornorsilk -well that I can get

    by glenn_the_frog

    But then its rather like the Phantom Tollbooth or Willy Wonka as well. Well, being compared to the most popular, highest selling book and movie series of the last 30 years that appeals to all ages isn't a bad thing, I suppose.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:17 p.m. CST

    lordoflight clearly you didn't read what I wrote

    by HornOrSilk

    Since I talked about the first four Doctors. Not only have I watched it, I know what I am talking about, and have even READ the complaints about how different the show was in the different eras. Graham Williams' era often gets a lot of backlash today -- sadly because I think it is the era which most kept the show on the air (not because it was the best, but provided the elements which have since been seen as what Doctor Who must include). The Hinchliffe era is dark and dramatic... the Williams comic and panto... that is just with the 4th Doctor. We could see the changes in the first Doctor, from grumpy old man who is an anti-hero, to the loving grandfather. Really it's all there. Different eras within each Doctor, if we want. Early UNIT vs the Sarah Jane season for Pertwee... etc.. really.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:20 p.m. CST

    With that, lordoflight -- I will bid you adieu

    by HornOrSilk

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:21 p.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    I'll try to email -- hope you get it. Let me know since I remember once I tried you didn't.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:27 p.m. CST

    And some of the lingo they give Matt Smith is awful


    Should the Doctor be saying words like "cool"? It's as if the BBC and Moffat are trying to make the Doctor this trendy teenager type guy who travels the universe making children happy. Mind was the same thing with David Tennant and Eccleston.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:38 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Part of why it works when he uses modern terms like that is that it feels very awkward, like your mom saying something was *the bomb*. For me, that's part of the charm of Smith's Doctor. He may be very confident sounding when he says it, but it's still awkwardly charming.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:41 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Oh that video!! Wash my eyes! lol I have NEVER seen that before. Talk about wanting to hide behind the couch.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 1:47 p.m. CST

    gotilk lol

    by HornOrSilk

    Well. It was from the first full Doctor Who story I ever saw. It was so funny in its way I was attracted to the show. Thankfully I got a sense of Doctor Who beyond it!

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 2:34 p.m. CST

    ~Cool...~ Err...

    by Perigee

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 2:35 p.m. CST

    Should I not be saying that?

    by Perigee

    I mean, it ~WAS~ my generation's word... was there a copyright expiration or something? Now am I just a weird old guy that says something he oughtn't? ~Sigh~ Great. Now I'm all socially awkward again...

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 2:38 p.m. CST

    perigee the first Doctor was cool, too

    by HornOrSilk

    Watch War Machines ;)

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 2:43 p.m. CST

    lordoflight I'm with gotlik on this...

    by dj_bollocks

    The Doctor to me has always been this alien character who is supposedly superior in his intellect but he has ALWAYS been socially awkward, particularly around humans for which we are led to believe either Earth is important, or he is curious about humans... Smith's language is just to highlight this awkwardness, like your embarrassing dad or uncle would have done, trying to be cool, but is anything. It's easy when you're an older actor to tap into the Doctor's tetchiness, irritability or irascibility... Since the Doctor has been younger actors he's less of an alien uncle and more of a misfit, his after all as has been at pains to have been explained for nearly 50 years ultimately a lonely traveller who takes on companions for company... The greatness of Matt Smith's Doctor is his inability to fit in - hence why the Pond's, who appear to be rooted in reality, take him to task when his social skills are inadequate. Moving on, I do find it hilarious that this story has illicited... it's like a really bad family get together where too much mulled wine has been imbibed and now it's all kicking off... in a good way of course !

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:12 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I admit a tiny cringe when he said *humaney-wumaney*, but when I heard it a second time, it made sense. I love to make up new words that are inappropriate for my age range, like.. Marv. (not a new thing, but I thought it was at the time) Rowfull (a pronunciation of ROFL) Adding names to words like: *that's Terry-rific* or *Albert Awesome!* or *Dunderful* and *WANDAful* Most of the time I just get weird looks. Appropriately. So I relate on some level. I currently like *Blighty* to describe the town I live in.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:13 p.m. CST

    Quick question...

    by gotilk

    Have there ever been *space hippies* on Doctor Who? Yay brother.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:30 p.m. CST

    Just saw the special, and thought it was pretty terrible

    by Rebel Scumb

    Granted, the Christmas Specials have always been my least favorite episodes of New Who, with the one exception of 'A Christmas Carol' last year, which I thought was amazing, but: -christmas invasion -the runaway bride -the end of time are by far my least favorite episodes of new who. Actually the Next Doctor wasn't too bad either, but this episode I thought was dreadful. It's the first time I haven't liked Matt Smith as the doctor, all the side characters were annoying. Bad pacing, predictable ending. Nothing really worked for me at all in it.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:31 p.m. CST

    Also a bit weird that the kids didn't age in 3 years.

    by Rebel Scumb

    From the intro to when it cut to after the father's 'death'

  • I noticed the actress who played the Mom is now an executive producer of Dr Who apparently? and they did hint at the doctor seeing her again. I hope not though...

  • I have to admit that I was disappointed by this episode. And, perhaps because of the heightened expectations of a Christmas special, I'll agree with a talkbacker above and say that it's probably my least favorite of the Moffat era. I'll also agree that there were a number of bits that took me right out of the story and had me questioning (e.g. the doctor flying through space; the tree tower with the spaceship on top; the survival of Madge's husband). I'll submit something to this discussion, but first I'll preface with this: I think I, like many of you, am probably a more "aware" viewer than most. First, I'm a huge Who fan and as I watch an episode I'm very aware of Moffat and co. working behind the scenes. As a writer, I'm also hyper-analytical and aware of story etc. So, this is my thing: I have huge respect for Moffat as a writer. I think he's kind of a genius. For the most part, I love what he's done with the show and, maybe more, I love his Tennent eps. Brilliant. But, for the first time, I felt (and I actually hate to admit this) a little bothered by his style. I felt too aware of Moffat. For instance: Moffat's his humour, his cleverness. I didn't really find the Doctor and his bits so charming this episode. "Humany woomany". I wanted to like this a lot -- and part of me did -- but I was just like, Really, Stephen? I also didn't completely buy the various set pieces that Moffat set up. I've thought about this before: I think Moffat sets up great stuff but sometimes this stuff doesn't quite feel like it has the story to back it up... Like, in this ep, the doctor jumping out of the spaceship, or that whole thing in the prequel with calling Amy etc.... It's like, Well this is cool to look at -- and I actually did enjoy it -- but isn't this just kind of, like, showing off something that feels kind of sensational... or showing of the -- awesome -- score? Or, in another example: Demon's Run. We were just kind of told that that was a huge thing and that it was going to be huge and that it was huge, but it actually wasn't such a big deal in the end... right? But, again, I still loved it; I was just a little aware of Moffat's orchestration of the series' story. But with this episode... I couldn't buy it -- ie, the tower, Madge driving the robot thing... It just felt forced and a little bullshitty. One of the things I love most about Who in general is its self-awareness. I love that the show works with its own mythology. It plays with its own TV history and it's brilliant. I love that a viewer can watch the show and be so aware of watching something that so often reminds you that you're watching a ridiculous sci-fi TV show, but then also feel so engaged -- emotionally, intellectually. We know, for instance, that regeneration is just another actor taking over a role. It's so clear. But we also feel so invested in that moment and in the show's story... I just don't like to see Moffat making the show too Moffat-y and playing on his own bits too much, I guess. Oh -- and I often love that that whole thing of elevating the story and mythos of the show to some kind legend-like or fairy-tale kind of feel. But, I agree with many here: A little too fantasy this ep... More lasers, please.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 3:35 p.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    Jo Grant.... ;)

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:15 p.m. CST

    MERRICK -- Moffat interviews

    by Jordan

    Merrick, can you point us to these interviews in which Moffat says that next season will be more "vintage"? I'm curious.... And I need more procrastination reading. He also said before series 6 that the show was going to be more hard sci-fi this season -- and I guess we got a big of that in a few eps... But not as much as the Tennent years I think.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:19 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Hahahaha!! There ya go.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:31 p.m. CST

    I can't remember any hard sci fi in the Tennant years jrizzle.


    That was pretty much the same thing.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:45 p.m. CST

    lordoflight -- scifi and Who

    by Jordan

    Right -- but I think those years demonstrated a more "B," sci-fi feel in some ways... And I think what Moffat was maybe referring to was this season's use of more sci-fi-like devices -- like the gangers.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 4:53 p.m. CST


    by gotilk


  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:03 p.m. CST

    Don't look at me.........

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    I just come here for the free food. :) Maybe this Friday's Docback will be back to normal. normal as it gets! Cheers

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:15 p.m. CST

    It is still great here.

    by gotilk

    ..and yes the free food is of excellent quality. Especially the Vervoid cocktail wieners. *choke*

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:34 p.m. CST

    Speaking of Jo Grant...

    by Rebel Scumb

    I've been watching a lot of Pertwee stuff lately, she's really grown on me. I think I actually perfer her to Sarah Jane now. Some really great chemistry between her and pertwee. I quite enjoyed Frontier in Space/Planet of the Daleks

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:38 p.m. CST

    Utter, utter, utter shite

    by snappy

    I missed it on Christmas Day so just caught up via the miracle of the BBC iPlayer. What an absolute pile of cack that episode was - starting with the Doctor chasing a falling spacesuit to Earth, in much the same way as those action films where the guy gets thrown from a plane and has to chase a parachute. Complete soppy bilge from beginning to end. If this is where the character is going, then I won't be following. 1/10 - and it only gets that for the cameos from Bill Bailey, Arabella Weir and Alexander Armstrong.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 5:56 p.m. CST

    I will readily grant…

    by Vektorix

    …that the opening made no sense. How did The Doctor get on to the alien ship without the TARDIS, and why did he need to go without it? Stipulating that the whole spacesuit thing was rubbish, how did he manage to steer himself to a crash landing within driving distance of where he'd stashed the blue box? The whole opening seemed like a poorly-done afterthought. That said, once the main story got under way, I really didn't have much problem with it. It was sweet, the characters were engaging, and it was pretty much exactly what I'd expect from a DW Christmas Special that had as its whole premise a riff on Narnia. And I suspect that aside from the Narnia riffage, the whole episode evolved backwards from the desire to have The Doctor "come home" for Christmas, and he developed the story into a direction where that happened. And the last three minutes of the episode made it all worthwhile. Do I wish Moffat had come up with a better opening? Absolutely. *I* could have come up with a better opening that used the same elements, and I'm not as talented as Moffat. But I don't think this is evidence that Moffat is bored or is a hack or any of the rather severe pronouncements that people have made here. Sometimes good writers write bad stories, or bad chapters, or bad scenes, and for whatever reason they don't get corrected before they go live.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 6:06 p.m. CST

    Doesn't it make a bit more sense...

    by dj_bollocks

    Once you watch the prequel ?

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 6:49 p.m. CST

    Re: dj_bollocks

    by Vektorix

    The prequel shows a bit of what The Doctor is doing on the alien ship, and how he caused it to blow up, but aside from one line about how he doesn't have the coordinates for Amy to fly it there, it doesn't elaborate at all about how he got on board without the TARDIS or why he had to leave the blue box behind. And to be fair, the prequel should not be required viewing to understand the episode. The prequel itself is fine - it's the writing of the first part of the episode itself that is a mess.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 7:15 p.m. CST

    but vektorix...

    by Rebel Scumb

    It's not meant to be a main plot point, it's like the opening of a James Bond or Indiana Jones film were we just know that the Doctor gets into all sorts of crazy adventures and this is a snippet from the end of one of them. Nothing wrong with that.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 7:17 p.m. CST


    by notspock2

    Just watched it a second time... I didn't have the near complete 180 I had on the second viewing of "A Christmas Carol" The beginning and end are both great, great stuff. (Anyone selling christmas trees decorated with train sets next year deserves to clear up) The middle in my opinion is a bit off, and lacks a dramatic story engine, there's very little well defined conflict - the consequences of the acid rain are not elucidated early enough and aren't deadly enough, to create tension, the bad guys are too comical to be something one has to really struggle to defeat. Most importantly, I am not sure entirely what Madge's character arc was- she seemed the same character mostly at the end as at the beginning, there seemed to be no inner journey for her, she really didn't seem to struggle too much with anything that faced her... whilst this made for a strong female representation, it also made for a character that was harder to empathise with. Still, it was fun though, and it made me well up at the end, so despite its perceived weakness, it did its job. Merry Christmas to you all once again.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 7:35 p.m. CST

    vektorix/rebel scumb

    by Renee Knowles

    That was my biggest problem with the opening. All of these "wait a second"s we've been having were completely avoidable. The Doctor could've gotten in the suit sooner, and then it wouldn't have quite been such a strain on our suspension of disbelief. After all, even if he IS able to survive in space with no oxygen... he had begun entry into Earth's atmosphere before putting on the suit. That's hardcore. Rebel scumb: Great point about the kids' not aging!

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 8:07 p.m. CST

    exactly: james bond opening

    by bongo dummy

    The opening was a James Bond set piece; over the top and bombastic. After all, what has the guy been doing since he went into hiding? A lot more than a little. It set him up to be this greater than anything character for the story. Then by the time he meets Marge--who is a strong willed character and who cuts straight to the chase and is unflappable--by the time he meets her she takes him as something great. Then he knocks it down a peg with his dorkish craziness, the helmet and the want to hang out in a police box. The next part was a revision of that opening. After establishing The Trials Men and Their Families Go Through in a Time of War, the Doctor is reintroduced as The Caretaker. That allows him to be just as fantastic and yet to Marge his is just "ridiculous" and to be avoided. The way I look at the show is kind of simple:there is a lot to it, sometimes. However, to take it too seriously is to ruin it for my viewing. If I focused on why the kids didn't age in three years or how the tree creatures had an escape plan or how the Comdey Rule of Three was introduced in the astronauts/villains of the piece, I'd not enjoy it at all. It is simply a silly Christmas time story. A little bit maudlin, sentimental and over the top. It was fun. BTW, The father never dies, he just skips through three years. Amelia Earhart should have been so lucky.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 8:08 p.m. CST

    Re: rebel scumb

    by Vektorix

    Oh I agree that a good way to open the show was some big set piece that you just roll with - that wasn't my argument. I just think that set piece could have been just as succinct and exciting without the glaring holes in the writing.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 8:34 p.m. CST

    I look forward to a little Doctor Xmas...

    by Coldsnap

    Just like I do for my wife's Quests: Only comes around once a year, takes up too much of my time for what it's worth and yet I wouldn't give it up for the world.

  • Dec. 27, 2011, 11:16 p.m. CST

    I'm surprised

    by maelstrom_ZERO

    Given how much nerd rage I effusively dumped on this season finale's resolution, you would think that this Christmas episode of Doctor Who would inspire as much exasperation and frustration from me. But oddly enough, I actually really enjoyed the episode. I'm not sure if I'm managing to overlook the episode's faults simply because it's so nice to have Who back that I'm willing to overlook logic gaps/etc., or if because the episode was really that good. But I had a good time watching it and I came away satisfied. Was the episode perfect? Not really, no. I think A Christmas Carol last year was much more superb in every respect. But regardless of its faults, the episode redeemed any problems it might have had by having the perfect ending: a lonely Doctor hesitantly reaching out to one of the best friends he's ever had, and having Amy reach back. Amy Pond is always brilliant by the way. I could watch another 5 seasons of her as the Doctor's companion, and I would never tire of it. She's just that awesome.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:05 a.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I have to tell you this. That moved me to tears. For many reasons, all good ones. You, sir, are doing it RIGHT and you are AMAZING! That's so creative and loving and just.... perfection. I cannot come up with enough words to describe how impressed I am with all of that. I only did this one time in my marriage, and it was a memorable holiday (her birthday). Perhaps if I (or we) did those things more often, we'd still be married. Not to bring anyone down... we were cursed... But this makes me want someone to do that for in my life again. The time will come. Anyway, I watched the whole thing and I just had to say something because it was so inspirational. You rock! THAT is how you do it. Thanks for sharing. Liked, shared, subscribed... everything.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:14 a.m. CST

    The HATs that saved Christmas

    by veteran_of_mu

    While we seem polarized on its quality, I don't think there's anyone who'd disagree this episode was intended to help us Whovians breed. It's Christmas and Moff's guaranteed lots of littlies will be snuggled up late with Mum & Dad watching DW. Not, in itself, a bad thing. And there are many prominent Docbackers whose inner littlies got a thrill from this as well. While I'm not one of them, I'd die to defend their right to their ya-yas and certainly don't count them as ~not true Whovians~ or ~a different kind of animal~. Nothing wrong with their wires in my book and I count 'em as friends and comrades. In fact I envy them. They got their Christmas present from the Moff while naughty folk like me didn't. Nothing wrong with the way we're wired, but we got coal lumps anyway. So I thought maybe there's a way we can build a hard-science BBQ out of all this coal. We could go about it by adding just a little exposition that would have satisfied us coal-clutchers if it had been included in the ep or the prequel. Nothing that will take away toys from those whose inner children hold 'em. Let's begin with the beginning. The Bogons or whoever whose ship got smithereened were plainly about to announce the enslavement and/or destruction of Earth. I can accept that Doc got on board by ferreting out one of their fifth column, stealing his transmat thingumbob, then activating it to follow it to its source. A bit of snooping around leads to his finger on the button. We've seen Doc pull this kind of jape more times than Rory's been killed. Next we have the fortuitous impact suit. Well we saw the Doc sonic-ing for all he was worth as the ship was blowing up as those who recall HAT #771 ( know what that means. The Doc was making or choosing a universe in which the Bogons had impact suits and there was one handy to him via the Sonic's point-and-think interface. As for surviving vacuum long enough to get into the suit, we've seen the Doc do that before. And as for the suit being tough enough to withstand re-entry and then repair whatever damage same caused, again that's not a terribly big bit of SF. Wave around the word nanites and you're gold. As for landing within driving distance of Sexy - it's been established she goes where Doc needs her to go. And there's HAT #771 again if that fails - Doc really can't get very inconvenienced, all right? Now as for Madge, she just fits the Doc's criteria for being a good egg. Claire Skinner who plays her is married to the bloke who directed Moff's HN/FOB episodes, so she's drawn from the show's circle and Moff has assumed a bit too much about how a stranger would relate to her for my comfort. But the point of the ep. is that Doc hands out wishes to people who have a certain something even if they don't go on to become companions. We've seen that in previous Christmases too. Question is what the something is and frankly I'm going with intellect and romance - if you don't think the Doc blesses those things you can makes up a HAT of your own. So now let's consider the blue present. The Doc put it together himself. Its purpose is not to go scampering about in some pocket universe's woods. Its purpose is camouflage for returning Madge's favour by sending her husband home. And if you doubt that, check out the scene where the Doc sees his bauble-reflection turn into the wooden King. That's the Dream Lord's trick and don't forget we heard a Dream Lord music queue in the prequel. Doc wearing the red tie fits okay with that ... Obviously there are no forests that magically create TARDISes. But there is one particular TARDIS that has a functioning chameleon circuit - when She wants it to function. If she can turn invisible, she can certainly put on the appearance of a geodesic dome and whip up a desktop that looks like the golden throne. Androzani tree harvesters can be dream artifacts or confederates - they're scenery. All the Doc is really doing is dragging Mr Arwell's plane through the vortex to Uncle Digby's country estate. One ~Digory~ is of course the hero of Lewis's ~The Magician's Nephew~ and an alias for Professor Kirke in ~The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe~. I take this as allusion, not ramification, though I should say I think it's a prime example of where Moff failed to grasp the nettle ... Anyway I think that's all it takes to put Christmas 2011 back in continuity. Doesn't make me feel all that satisfied because, heck, if I can toss this off without thinking very hard I expect much better of Mr Moff when he does his turn. Hence my harsh words at the end of my review above. Moff could still have had his kiddy market and yet kept the likes of me merry. The fact that he didn't makes me think he's looking a bit tired ... Ho! Ho! Ho!

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:15 a.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I've fallen for Amy too. I love her awkwardness, her *just barely* geekiness, her laugh (she appears to laugh with her entire body, which I adore) , the way she looks when she's mad.... I too could do with another 5 seasons of her. And Rory aint too shabby either. He does exasperated better than almost anyone I've seen.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:18 a.m. CST

    theseeker, re: The Doctor in open space...

    by lynxpro

    The intro was in its self a reference to ClassicWho. There was a 5th Doctor episode where it established Time Lords can survive out in open space for 30 seconds. And The Moff is a big fan of the Peter Davison era so that was deliberate. That and the Harvester being mentioned as an Androzani Harvester which harkens back to the 5th Doctor's best - and last - story... "The Caves of Androzani". I'd classify that episode as perhaps the greatest story of ClassicWho, or at least in the pantheon with "Genesis of the Daleks", "Day of the Daleks", "The Deadly Assassin", "The Key to Time" season, "Logopolis", and "The Pirate Planet"...oh...and not to forget "An Unearthly Child"...

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:22 a.m. CST

    gotlick, and DirecTV's lack of BBCA HD...

    by lynxpro

    Don't drop DirecTV over that. It infuriates me that BBCA HD isn't on DirecTV but content providers are often buttheads over charging the services to carry their channels. That's why Comcast's G4 got dropped by DirecTV. On the West Coast, it is rather limited your choices to switch. Comcast doesn't have BBCA HD either. And while Dish [ghetto satellite] and AT&T Uverse apparently have the channel, they have a lot of negatives associated with them that won't make up for having that 1 channel. I hope in 2012 BBCA/BBC Worldwide will drop whatever asinine pricing they are dictating to DirecTV so we can finally have the channel in HD and not in the SD blurrovision that the channel seems to be televised in exclusively here on the West Coast...

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:31 a.m. CST

    caractacuspotts with another brilliant HAT

    by gotilk

    HATs are cool. I could read your style of writing all day. Very funny and sweet, while being slightly critical about it. Not many can pull it off, and you are part of why this place is as fun and welcoming as it is. Thanks!

  • Of course, for the most part during 2005's revival, I thought to myself, "wow...and people complained about the 1996 TV Movie and cheer on this stuff?" For me, New Who didn't truly begin again until 2010...not counting the Moffat penned episodes prior to it...

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:36 a.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I'm still thinking it through. Some of the SD channels are so bad at that... interpolating thing they do... that sometimes still shot close-ups have the backgrounds moving around like someone was shaking a second camera... like a bad special effect (traveling matte). Have you ever noticed that? Happens with trees a lot, too. Dancing trees.... and horizon lines... that should not be dancing. Very odd. Distracting at times. Maybe that's a DirecTV thing, maybe it's an up-scaling thing in general. But yes, I am still thinking it through before making any rash decisions. After all, we finally got AMC in HD. So there is that. And yes, I had Dish network a long time ago and hated it. Comcast is RIGHT OUT. U-verse? Don't know enough about it. Thanks!

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 3:06 a.m. CST


    by thefirerises

    So stoked for the Lockback. Kinda confused as to how the episodes have been structured - we ended on the Moriarty cliffhanger, but the trailers for the new episodes seem to suggest that we won't be seeing him again until the 2nd and mostly 3rd episodes, so if that's the case how do we even begin? Have the two just randomly escaped the snipers and gone home, "Oh, time to start another case..." Reichenbach Fall sounds like it could be excellent. The other two I'm not 100% convinced on yet, though Scandal's trailer makes it look damn fun at least.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 7:16 a.m. CST

    Can't believe the criticism here!

    by Peter

    It's Christmas. Relax your critical faculties, find room for just one more mince pie and accept that the Doctor Who Christmas special is going to be a pleasant fantasy that all the family can watch - not hard science fiction! At least it's truly written for Christmas, rather than an adaptation of a non-Christmas tale. Honestly, I've watched some of my favourite American series in the last few weeks and normally their concession to Christmas is to have the murder victim in a Santa suit! They may be Christmassy, but they're not "special". Incidentally, Merrick, your thesis on why people care about the good Doctor is spot on. This is more than just a show that we watch for a couple of seasons - it's part of our childhood, part of our present and part of our future. I expect still to be watching it when I'm 70, though it may take a little break from time to time. And for those that bemoan the quality of the show at the moment, check this out - the serial that made even me, a lifelong fan, turn off the TV set and write off the whole thing for a decade:

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 7:53 a.m. CST

    Forgive my obvious Yankee ignorance, Mr. True Fan

    by clupula

    But if you feel that the show started to go downhill during the Tom Baker days...why are you still watching? In fact, why have you been watching any of the past seven Doctors? Once again, I'm an American, so I probably know nothing of your mysterious ways, sir, but...wouldn't it be pretty clear that the show hasn't been for you in a very, very long time?

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:01 a.m. CST

    thefirerises - Lara Pulver! Lara Pulver! Lara Pulver!

    by Mister Vertue

    If you're not 100% convinced after Lara's performance alone, you can claim your money back. Okay, you can't, but I'm convinced you're going to love series 2.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:17 a.m. CST

    Scandal in Bohemia is one of my favorite Holmes Stories

    by HornOrSilk

    As is the Musgrave Ritual. I'm looking forward to the new Holmes New Year. For Season 3, I hope they do a modern Musgrave story. I would have it based upon WWII and Jews, however.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:19 a.m. CST

    Ok maybe not WWII and Jews

    by HornOrSilk

    That's too recent (sorry, still recovering from a bad cold ). But still, Musgrave needs to be done.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:38 a.m. CST

    I did not care for this Christmas special or DW 6.2

    by Dr_PepperSpray

    Season 6.1 was brilliant, and even if Demon's Run didn't quite add up to it's hype, it was a great cap to an other-wise smooth run. So what the hell happened? It was almost as if no one cared after setting up the mysteries from the beginning of the season. I felt the same sort of gnawing disappointment watching this Christmas special. I know it's primarily a kids show, but come on guys. I just want Moffet to go back to helming this ship, and add more Niel Gaimen episodes. <P> Either way, I sincerely hope they put more effort into 7.1 & 7.2...

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:57 a.m. CST

    The Intro was a tip to the hat! NO CHRISTMAS INVASION THIS YEAR!

    by wtriker1701

    Don't know, if anybody mentioned that before. But I just loved the intro for what it was: Telling, we're more into Fairy Tale Who than Sci-Fi Who with Moff's X-Mas Specials. There could have been another Special with Aliens invading Earth - but not this time, not AGAIN! I loved it! (Though I loved THE CHRISTMAS INVASION by RTD - 3rd rank in my list!)!

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 10:10 a.m. CST

    Re: Maelstrom & Gotlik

    by Vektorix

    I absolutely 100% agree that the Ponds (and especially Amy) are among the best friends The Doctor has ever had. Both Amy and The Doctor have grown during their companionship - Amy is no longer the damaged, disturbed girl she was in her early appearances, and The Doctor seems to not only accepted that he is loved but finally moved past the guilt (most of it anyway) over the Time War. And it certainly helps that Matt and Karen seem to be fast friends out of character - the chemistry is so strong because it isn't faked. I too could watch the Ponds for another five seasons, but in some ways I understand why it's time for the Doctor to have a new companion. Amy and Rory have a home and life outside the TARDIS now, and they (esp. Amy) don't NEED to be off having adventures because their lives are their own adventure now. The Ponds' "heartbreaking" departure could be the realization that they can't be the Companions any longer, as much as The Doctor might want them to be. Killing them off would be too predictable and easy, in my opinion, and The Ponds deserve better…

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 11:39 a.m. CST

    By the end of the episode ....

    by Dalius

    I thought it had some great bits, but overall it was a bit "meh". But in the UK, the episode was followed (in our house at least) by an hour and a half of dreadful soap operas. I couldn't stay in the room, and they made Dr.Who look like a majestic work of art by comparison. It's all relative (as Einstein once said .... ish).

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:53 p.m. CST

    I wonder if your viewing pleasure correlates to whether or not

    by V'Shael

    you read the Narnia books as a child? I mean, it's obvious that's where the show was riffing from. And I wonder if the people who loved it, like me, read the Narnia books? And the ones who were Meh about the whole thing, didn't? Just a thought.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 12:59 p.m. CST

    Watched it a third time before bed.....

    by gotilk

    ..while I caught up with a game I was doing some repetitive tasks on. Coincidentally, a member in the game gave me something very valuable and cool, just out of the blue. I mentioned Who. Yep. He was cool, randomly generous AND he turned out to be a Who fan. Small world. He was just walking around giving free items and money away, with a hearty MERRY CHRISTMAS greeting. Still adored the Christmas episode. ESPECIALLY that ending. Wow. Smith owns the role. And the *I KNOW*s... hahahaha! Also caught a line I had missed BOTH times. The *famous final/last words* line. Hilarious. Not sure how I missed it, although I live in a very distracting environment. Understatement of the year. And speaking of years.... Anyone want to share resolutions? I decided to not do them a few years ago, but I feel it stirring in me again this year. (or is that gas?) What do you want to do (or WILL do) this year?

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 1:01 p.m. CST

    By the way, that third viewing was on the DVR (DirecTV)

    by gotilk

    And I would like to just take a moment to complain again that it was like watching WHO through a glass of 1 percent milk. Blurry.Mess.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 1:55 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I never read them, but the stories/characters were a constant in my youth because I had several friends obsessed with Narnia. I was too busy with cheap Alan Dean Foster novels (I mean cheap as in 25-50 cents, not quality, many of his books were real page turners) and Tolkien as well as a ton of non-fiction. .... ...and I adore this Xmas episode. Good to see you, by the way.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 2 p.m. CST


    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    My New Year's resolution is that I am starting the Insanity workout, and am looking to lose about 60lbs by May. Oh will happen!

  • I did enjoy the beginning stuff with the spaceship and the Doctor's reentry to Earth (I'm willing to accept that they must be special spacesuits that absorb the energy of the impact, or else Time Lords have skeletal bypass systems that work when their bones get completely pulped ;) ), and the bit showing off the house was fun. I also thought that the bit with Claire making the Doctor realize that he needed to go visit Amy and Rory was well done, as was the entire reunion with Rory and Amy Slight note on Pond chronology. I thought she said it's been 2 years since they've been dropped off, but really it coulld be just about any time on the calender (it could easily be Chistmas this year). Given what happened in Season 6, and seeing the Ponds post-TARDIS travels in the department store the day before their earlier selves were having a picnic at Lake Silencio (and, given some time to establish the perfume line), the Ponds could easily have been dropped back in 2009. Rory would be the wise one here and advise Amy not to interact with their past selves in order to keep the universe from blowing up. I will also give Moffat much credit for not resorting to another invasion/destruction of Earth plotline except for wrapping up the precredits sequence, and trying to do a completely different story. The bits with Bill Bailey were fun (with a nice nod to Caves of Androzani), but part of my vague disappointment might have been because their parts weren't more substantial in this. It might be that the threat didn't seem more palpable. Maybe it's because I didn read Narni books as a child. It just felt to me that the special was less than sum of its parts. It was lke a magnificent souffle that went flat during cooking.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 2:29 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    That's some pretty hardcore stuff! Best of luck! I'm going low(er) carb again for a while. I originally lost 60lbs in about 3 months. Then I gained back about 25-30. Going to lose it again and then start doing that wrestler's/combat conditioning thing again that a friend gave me the videos for. They really made a difference for me regarding back/neck pain.. and it is all body weight exercises. No free weights or machines. I still have a 24hr fitness membership though. Love the spa/pool/jacuzzi. And it's good for cardio.I see the Insanity thing is cardio-heavy. I'll need to look closer at that. But I'm still not sure about my resolutions. I've already started the lower carb thing again. I'm thinking of setting some creative goals.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 2:44 p.m. CST

    Any other DocBacker resolutions ?

    by gotilk

    There have got to be a few. I came up with one. For this to be the year I at the VERY least catch up 100% with the classic Who DocBack viewings. That's not much of a resolution. But then again... aim low and reach higher... (and slip in a few more of those Davison years episodes I have never, ever seen).

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 3:31 p.m. CST


    by veteran_of_mu

    Bodyweight exercises and the Shangri-La Diet.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 4:30 p.m. CST


    by Rebel Scumb

    I've never required Dr Who to be hard, or even moderate science fiction. Onl

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 4:32 p.m. CST

    petermck cont'd (stupid cat hit the enter button mid sentence)

    by Rebel Scumb

    only an entertaining and imaginative show. I just didn't feel that this particular special worked. Matt smith whom I usually quite enjoy was very grating, and there just wasn't anything in this episode I particularly could latch onto or enjoy. But as I've said before, I don't really like the xmas specials in general except for 'a christmas carol' last year, and to a lesser extent 'the next doctor'

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 4:34 p.m. CST


    by Rebel Scumb

    Fair enough. I misunderstood your original comment

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 4:59 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Now THAT is interesting. Especially the section on self-experimentation. Wow. And I know it may sound weird, but I did speak with someone who said she lost fast weight by wearing a nicotine patch for a few weeks. She was a non-smoker, so cessation wasn't an issue for her when she was done. Since I have not read the book or really looked into it, I'm not even entirely sure that this is recommended. I just noticed it is mentioned. And that book they link to, *Guinea Pig Scientists: Bold Self-Experimenters in Science and Medicine*, I was surprised to discover is a children's book. I want it anyway. It reminds me of that whole Trans-humanist movement in the late 80s/early 90s as well as the PIHKAL/TIHKAL books. Extolling the virtues of self-experimentation to children is pretty radical sounding. But kind of strangely refreshing that they are assuming 9 to 12 year old kids have the ability to reason. Thanks so much for the mention of the diet book. Now I have about 7 books I'm looking forward to reading. Awesome. Now there is a good historical figure for The Doctor to visit... Lazzaro Spallanzani. So, what are we swallowing today? Wood? Cloth? Here's a link to the book: (amazon link w/Docback affiliate ID) I hope I got that code right.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 7:22 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    Wasn't the Doctor already entering Earth's atmosphere before he got into the suit? And could you please clue this already-old-and-irrelevant 29-year-old into what "HAT" means?

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 7:33 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    We don't really do Christmas specials, hun. I'm not sure if it's because Christmas has become such a political hot potato the last few years or if we're too busy watching Christmas classics (films) or what the reason is. Most shows just take the week off. *shrugs*


  • Blink? or perhaps another?

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:07 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    If I'm allowed to use two parters, it would either be Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead (especially if you rewatch it after catching up to current events with regards to River Song) or The Doctor's Wife.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:09 p.m. CST


    by veteran_of_mu

    @Gotilk, Shangri la diet works. No hunger, you can eat as much as you want of whatever you want, no pills, no special foods, you don't even have to exercise. And you don't even need to buy the book - all the information is right there on Roberts' site. I bought the book anyway. Out of gratitude, first, then a few times as a gift. @Protocol417, HAT = Half Arsed Theory. Several of them are at . And at 29 you're far from old. I've got 20 years on you and I'm far from old. @theseeker7, Vincent And The Doctor. Hands down.

  • I enjoyed it though. Maybe the weakest episode to me since the Dalek episode in the 5th Series, but I still enjoyed that, and I still enjoyed this. Not been too great a holiday season for me this year. Couldn't get into the holiday mood. Then I got violently ill Thursday night/Friday morning. Forced myself to drive down Christmas morning to spend time with the family. Probably shouldn't have been driving but it's Christmas you know? Got back home Monday and just tired, weak and worn out. Went to buy the Christmas ep off Amazon video-and it wasn't up. I had to wait until Tuesday. Regardless of its faults, it got me in the holiday mood (a bit too late but oh well). I really wished I had seen it earlier.

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:47 p.m. CST

    serious question

    by Merrick

    At any point in its run does DOCTOR WHO get shittier than 'The Web Planet'?

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 9:52 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    Oh, I know I'm not old! :) A little behind the times in internet memes, music, and lingo... In some ways 39 is the new 29, and in some ways, it's the other way around! ;) Thanks for explaining the whole HAT thing :) Vincent and the Doctor was excellent. If I hadn't rewatched SitL/FotD I would have put that just behind The Doctor's Wife. Have you seen SitL/FotD since River Song has become a semi-regular character?

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 10:15 p.m. CST


    by TheSeeker7

    Ya know as soon as I officially posted that question, the FIRST damn thing to come to my mind was, you just KNOW some sneaky git's gonna say theirs is a 2-parter :p lol

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 10:45 p.m. CST

    Why were their leaves on the trees at the country home?

    by iceman199

  • Dec. 28, 2011, 10:46 p.m. CST

    Isn't it supposed to be winter?

    by iceman199

    They can do a whole other world filled with snow, yet they forget to make it look like winter when the family arrives at the house on Christmas Eve.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 3:17 a.m. CST


    by emeraldboy

    i would say the eleventh hour. matt smiths introduction. and any episode with sexy amy pond.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:01 a.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    It depends. Some people think the worst story happens in the 6th Doctor's era. I will let you figure out which story. As for me, I like the idea of the Web Planet and give it a lot of props for trying to do an entirely alien story.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:03 a.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    Other option: Dimensions in Time

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:12 a.m. CST

    Liked every xmas special but this one.

    by happybunni

    This one definitely wasn't anything compared to the others. The writing seemed sub-par... The story wasn't all that interesting or compelling. The mother being a stuck up cow was highly annoying. Seemed like they just phoned it in

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 5:28 a.m. CST

    Merrick - jump around a bit...

    by dj_bollocks

    Whilst you are to be commended for starting at the beginning and carrying on, there's really nothing stopping you from taking the occasional interlude here and there... Might make the journey a little more enjoyable ? Because there is some dull and slow stuff coming your way my friend ! Maybe do a 12 Doctors for 2012... (although you've probably seen all of Peter Cushing's Doctor's right ?) Take a story from each and reward yourself ! If it were me - and out of sheer randomness I would go for: Hartnell - The Dalek Invasion Of Earth Troughton - The Krotons Pertwee - Invasion Of The Dinosaurs Baker - Robot Davison - Arc Of Infinity Baker - Vengeance Of Varos McCoy - Paradise Towers McGann - TV Movie Eccleston - Parting Of The Ways Tennant - Blink Smith - Vincent And The Doctor Cushing - The second movie... Anyone else ?

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 6:35 a.m. CST


    by Peter

    It seems you might have interpreted my post as colonial arrogance. Apologies! I didn't mean it that way. I'll try and clarify. Us Brits do Christmas Specials. You traitorous Yanks generally don't. I'm not saying our approach is better, it's just a minor cultural difference. In fact, Christmas Specials tend to be a little naff and contrived by their very nature. It's practically part of the remit. Maybe that didn't sit will with the American public - hey, look at the infamous "Star Wars" Christmas Special. Naffness at Christmas is part of British culture. We like pantomimes, which are inherently bad musical theatre! (OH NO THEY'RE NOT) In that spirit, I give the Doctor Who special a Christmas pass. Leaps of logic and all-round festive mischief are practically required. As an aside, Clupula, the Kandy Man made his infamous one-off appearance during Sylvester McCoy's run, not Tom Bakers. Tom's stuff was the golden age, as far as I'm concerned. Sylvester's stories descended into bad parody and I switched off in embarassment. It was cancelled not long after and the Doctor languished alone in the Time Vortex until the 1996 telemovie, which while flawed, was about a squillion times better than the last few years of proper Auntie-Doctor. Frankly, I think we're in a new golden age, now, Christmas Specials excepted!

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 11:30 a.m. CST

    Watched it 3 times so far

    by FeralAngel

    Man, I love this ep. Speaking as a proud Yank, do we have anything on the "telly" here in the States that's as good as Who? I don't think so.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 1:45 p.m. CST

    Hi Guys

    by ComicGuru

    I'm just going to throw in my two penneth worth. The Christmas Special this year had a way too high silliness quotient for the first ten minutes but the heart it had on display more than makes up for those shortcomings. I've also completed another vlog and threw in a Doctor Who reference. The one after this will be Doctor Who centric. Check it out if you like it then subscribe. The 9 month wait for new Who is already taking its toll.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 2:03 p.m. CST


    by Peter

    It might not be on at the moment, but Star Trek, especially the original series, is consistently better than Doctor Who (in my opinion), although I think the best episodes of Who might just pip the best of Trek. But Who could be so uneven. Both show's 'concepts' have proved to have enough stamina and creative scope to last for decades and both are bloody brilliant. As a child I was fascinated by Tom Baker's Who, but idolised Kirk.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 2:32 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I would say from what I have seen, the episode/serial featuring the Candyman was the worst. Even the voice was so grating I could see how someone could stop watching for years after seeing it. Poor McCoy . Even his series finale looked like it cost gas money and VHS tape to make. He was so shafted in so many ways, yet still comes out in the end with dignity and love from much of fandom in more recent years. I know there is a TON of hate for Love and Monsters. But I didn't actually hate that episode at all. I found it touching, but certainly not great in any sense. I think if I hated ELO I would have liked it less. But I LOVE old ELO, so I guess it hit certain buttons in me. But that doesn't mean I don't see that the criticism leveled at the episode is accurate. It IS. I will even admit that if I didn't like ELO at all, I would have probably hated the episode. The casting was so good for that episode, and it did feel wasted. It also wastes what could have been a very interesting expansion of the Whoniverse in L.I.N.D.A. by creating and essentially destroying it within the story. I did find a very cool custom action figure of the CandyMan... I found the name of the serial. *The Happiness Patrol*. That has my vote and I've only seen about 10-15 minutes of it. That's enough for me.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 2:51 p.m. CST

    Oh we do Christmas *specials*.

    by gotilk

    But they are usually just considered Christmas *episodes* and sometimes are not advertized as such. We just don't put emphasis on it, and like was mentioned before,many times it is in the form of a murder victim in a Santa suit. Ungh, procedurals. (with the exception of House, which in spite of it no longer really deserving it, still has my loyalty) I have noticed fewer Christmas episodes on US tv shows over the years. But they are still done. Many times they are called Holiday Specials or Holiday episodes. A lot of people here interpret that as a *war on Christmas* because people are attempting to be INclusive rather than EXclusive, but what can you do? Christmas is still the dominant holiday here, and saying Happy Holidays will never change that. I find it to be an over-reaction, but those tend to come from all sides don't they? I still celebrate in spite of my atheism, because I honestly enjoy the holiday and what it brings out in people. I still say both, too. Happy Holidays AND Merry Christmas. Occasionally, Happy Festivus. I think Christmas is a beautiful tradition, and over the years more and more so.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 2:56 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Hi! Welcome! Really enjoyed the video. Subscribed.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 3:09 p.m. CST

    You know, The Candyman is so horrible...

    by gotilk

    I would like to make a custom figure of it, spinning eyes and all. Seems simple enough. The only problem the custom had in the video I posted above is the head had the wrong texture. It needs those blue candy *beads* glued to it.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 3:42 p.m. CST

    Happiness Patrol

    by HornOrSilk

    I think it is better than many think of it, if they understand it. It's a satire. It does it quite well for the budget. I actually like the story and, though I wish the budget was better, find it better than many other stories. And I think the Kandyman would be wonderful for a revival.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 3:44 p.m. CST

    And for you gotilk ..... a custom review!

    by HornOrSilk

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 3:50 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    I think the concept could be great fun,too. If they did it right, it could be a fantastic parody and a very funny episode. As far as episodes/serials with childish elements, I think The Greatest Show In The Galaxy was so much better.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 3:53 p.m. CST


    by gotilk

    Thanks for the link, I hadn't seen that. If I can do any better (with help from a friend that does these things all the time) I'll be sure to post images.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:01 p.m. CST

    gotilk Greatest Show/Happiness Patrol

    by HornOrSilk

    I think of them more or less equally. There are elements I love about both of them, but I find both of them hurt by the budget. I find the werewolf in GSITG to be worse than anything HP. However, I find FIFI and the studio aspects of HP to be its downfall. The Kandyman I actually like.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:27 p.m. CST

    Kandy Man

    by Peter

    Do you guys have Liquorice Allsorts in America? Have you seen their mascot, Bertie Bassett? The BBC had to promise not to use Kandy Man again. To a British audience, seeing Bertie as a villain made the programme a laughing stock.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:31 p.m. CST

    Possibly of interest to some of you...

    by gotilk

    A 1963 episode of *The Sky At Night* was discovered at an African TV station (they should check for old Who there as well), featuring an interview with Arthur C Clarke. Very fascinating. It is on YouTube in its entirety.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 4:55 p.m. CST

    We do have Liquorice Allsorts here.

    by gotilk

    But I've never seen a mascot. I just did an image search and the character does look familiar though.

  • Dec. 29, 2011, 6:12 p.m. CST


    by Renee Knowles

    Sorry! ;) If you don't mind, I'm going to take the "sneaky git" part as a compliment. ;) Well, if I must separate it, then I'll go with Forest of the Dead. :P

  • Dec. 30, 2011, 4:27 a.m. CST


    by gotilk

    No, actually probably not. Anyone watch Great Expectations? I think it was a fine adaptation of my favorite Dickens story. Great lead, great supporting cast. Looked lovely. The Lean version (40s?) is still my favorite though. Have a great LockBack!

  • Dec. 30, 2011, 5:40 a.m. CST

    Antoher favourite Christmas Carol? SCROOGED!

    by wtriker1701

    That's how they did right for Christmas in the Eighties! Scrooged And Christmas Vacation are THE movies that have to be watched EVERY Christmas... least in my family... my two sons do it also every year...

  • Dec. 30, 2011, 12:47 p.m. CST

    Merrick - worst episodes (side notes on Happiness Patrol)

    by DoctorTom

    If you include some of the related material, I would definitely agree that Dmensions Time is by far the worst - it will make you want to gouge your eyes out. As for the regular series, you've already watched one of the worst stories (no, not Web Planet) - Time and the Rani. The general wisdom for the worst story is generally held to be either The Twin Dilemma or Timelash, depending on your mood. Timelash might have been better if they had let Paul Darrow go as over the top as he wanted - it might have then ended up being compared to Horns of Nimon and the ott performance there. The Twin Dilemma, though, shows how you can take a story and make almost every wrong choice possible. Last story of the season, let's show the new Doctor as mentally unstable, unfriendly and unsympathetic, then dress him up as a circus clown. Put this n a feeble story, add some tin foil (though I'm trying to remember if it was more for the special effects or some of the costumes), and cast precious kids in the story just to show that the showrunners hadn't learned the lessons from having Adric. Then, let people keep this image in their mind for half a year before the new season starts. Who would blame people for not wanting to come back to the show? (None of this is to be taken as a reflection on Colin Baker himself. Going back to a more crotchety Doctor is perfectly fine, but doesn't do any favors if you don't get to see his good points in the one story. They should have had Caves of Androzani as the last story of the season, and started Baker out at the beginning of a season, so that people would have a chance to develop a better opinion of his character rather than base is all off of a story when he was deliberately written to be menatlly unstable because of his regeneration. No, the fault startw with JNT and Eric Saward, and cascades down to the production crew.)

  • Dec. 30, 2011, 12:50 p.m. CST

    Happiness Patrol

    by DoctorTom

    forgot to throw this in the last post. This one definitely divides people. I'm in the Hornorsilk camp on this one and enjoy the story, particularly in how McCoy topples a regime in one night. Some people don't seem to get past Kandyman, though, and that's their rght. This might be a situation where not having had the exposure to Bertie Bassett growing up might have actually helped in not prejudging Kandyman.

  • Dec. 30, 2011, 12:58 p.m. CST

    One thing about the Christmas Special

    by DoctorTom

    This will be as close as we will probably get to having a television story with John and Gillian; the kids in the special take up that function rather nicely.

  • Dec. 31, 2011, 1:30 a.m. CST

    Good ep.

    by captain_kirk

    Very true to the character. Curious about prequel...

  • Who shall stop me? No one! For they talk of time - but they do not think of it!

  • Aug. 27, 2012, 8:29 a.m. CST

    That's the thing about Time...

    by V'Shael

    you just got here... MOV has just gotten a FIRST post, without shouting FIRST... your LAST post has been there for 10 thousand years... it's still rendering... you're still composing it. It all depends on your point of view, Time. Did I have to arrive at Feb 10, 2012 9:26:24 AM CST to make this point? No... So the next time you think you're putting an end to a thread, just remember the legion of fans out there, arriving at fixed point threads from their own many timelines, strewn about the cosmos like crazy paving.