The Friday Docback Prepares For Coming Of 'The Snowmen'!! The DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, Moffy MiniBits, And More!!
This week’s Docback features a quick round up of news from the WHOVverse, much of which transpired over the past week, or even the past few days.
A second Docback will open next week - on Monday (December 24) - devoted to The Snowmen - this year’s DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, which transmits Christmas Day. It will be the only Docback for that week.
To date, the only DOCTOR WHO Christmas Specials I’ve completely fallen for have been The Christmas Invasion and The Runaway Bride (the later of which was instrumental on hooking me on nuWHO, so I have a special affinity for it). This said, every Yuletide-themed DW adventure has had something interesting to offer - even if the whole shebang didn't work out so well. Voyage of the Damned had Kylie Minogue and Bannakaffalatta and Wilfred Mott. The Next Doctor had a lovely performance by David Morrissey and that steampunk robonightmare machine jacking up a whole city at the end.
I thought A Christmas Carol was beautiful in many ways (I mean...it has a fucking FLYING SHARK - it can't be all bad, right?)...but that one didn’t do much for me on the whole...although Katherine Jenkins most certainly did. The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe...never seemed completely formed to me. It felt like a huge number of nice ideas whose packaging was not fully refined. I'm probably forgetting one or two of the specials in there, but you get the point.
On the whole, I found The Snowmen to be the most focused, most fully realized, most lavishly produced of this lot - perhaps because it’s a game changer in a number of regards. It’s not just a “Christmas Special” - by the time it's done it appears to be something of a show re-definer (not unlike Christmas Invasion). More on this when The Snowmen Docback opens Monday.
HERE'S A BETTER LOOK AT THE NEW TARDIS INTERIOR (HIGH RES)!!!
The design offers a very interesting take on the vehicle's interior - hearkening back to the smaller and simpler interiors in which earlier incarnations of the Doctor traveled. There's also a slight FORBIDDEN PLANET sensibility here...which I can't help but love...
The image I initally ran was this size - but I've now made it VERY EMBIGGENABLE with a far higher res version that you can access simply by clicking the pic!
There's been some question about that costume. My UNDERSTANDING of the matter is that this costume does, indeed, represent a style/appearance which will persist on the show for some time. This "throwback" vibe will apparently be evident in several ohter facets of the show as it progresses (one of which is mentioend below).
Thanks to Aint It Cool readers John and Anglophile for initially calling this to our attention!
Vastra Investigates IN A NEW PREQUEL TO The Snowmen!!
Here's another prequel to The Snowmen. Both of the videos below very much put characters into place for the opening of next week's episode.
The last minisode found Vastra (Neve McIntosh) - the hottest lizard lady on or off this planet - encountering a rather Darkish Doctor, in a brief tale which brought us a now immortal line from Sontaran Strax.
This new installment, seen below, continues the set-up for the forthcoming Christmas episode.
GET READY FOR A NEW THEME ARRANGEMENT FROM MURRAY GOLD, TO GO ALONG WITH NEW OPENING TITLES!!
While they don't want to spoil the suprise, the BBC said the new look opening credits are "wonderfully dramatic and striking, with a couple of unexpected touches."
THE MOFF SPEAKS!
WHOrunner Steven Moffat's recent disucssion with Vulture offers some interesting insight into what we can expect from the remainder of theDW's 7th Season/Series, which resums this April.
Regarding how the new companion (played by Jenna-Louise Coleman) will interact with the Doctor, Moffat says...
"For one thing, she's little and so Matt is suddenly terribly tall. It feels like a bigger age gap somehow. He suddenly is the irascible older man, which Matt does extremely well despite the fact he's 30."
This is interesting, and is yet another example of how the show appears to be acknowledging/circling back to its roots.
Referring to the Neil Gaiman's upcoming Cybermen episode, Moff stated...
"I wanted to make them creepier, and a bit more active. I thought we had gone as far as we could with the stumpy Cybermen. I wanted to do the colder, deadlierversion and I was interested in Neil giving it a ghost-story feel. Neil's a good ghost story writer."
There's a bit more, including an assessment of the impact (or lack thereof) of the delay in the next batch of SHERLOCKs, HERE!
Also, THIS piece at DoctorWhoTV offers some insight from Moff about the above-seen changes to the interior design of the TARDIS.
Per Sir the Moff...
“I thought we’d been getting progressively whimsical with the interior of the TARDIS. And I started to think, ‘Well, why is that? It’s not a magical place. It’s actually a machine.’
“And actually potentially, as you’ll see more spectacularly later, quite a scary place sometimes. We make a lot of use of that.”
Regarding the show's upcoming 50th Anniversary, he says...
“[Plans] are immense, they are considerable. They will be full of tremendous surprises. But they wouldn’t be surprises if I accidentally said them now, would they?
All of this and more can be found HERE!
More on Monday...
[Season / Series Seven Docbacks - MOST RECENT DOCBACK IS HIGHLIGHTED]
[SEASON / SERIES SIX DOCBACKS]
"The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe" (2011 Christmas Special)
[RETRO-WHO DOCBACKS ]
"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 Sensorites" (Story #7 - full DVD release)
"The Reign of Terror" (Story #8)
"Planet of Giants" (Story #9)
"Planet of Giants" (Story #9, full DVD release)
"The Dalek Invasion of Earth" (Story #10)
"The Rescue" (Story #11)
"The Romans" (Story #12)
"The Crusade" (Story #14)
"The Space Museum" (Story #15)
"The Chase" (Story #16)
"The Time Meddler" (Story #17)
"Galaxy 4" (Story #18)
"Mission to the Unkonwn" (Story #19)
"The Myth Makers" (Story #20)
"The Gunfighters" (Story #25)
"The Tomb of the Cybermen" (Story #37)
"The Mind Robber" (Story #45)
"The Krotons" (Story #47)
"The Seeds of Death" (Story #48)
"Spearhead from Space" (Story #51)
"The Abassadors of Death" (Story #53)
"The Claws of Axos" (Story #57)
"The Colony in Space" (Story #58)
"The Daemons" (Story #59)
"Day of the Daleks" (Story #60) + Preview of the DotD Special Edition
"The Three Doctors" (Story #65)
"Carnival of Monsters" (Story #66)
"Death to the Daleks" (Story #72)
"The Claws of Axos" (Story #77)
"The Robots of Death" (Story #90)
"The Talons of Weng-Chiang" (Story #91)
"The Sun Makers" (Story #95)
"The City of Death" (Story #105)
"Nightmare of Eden" (Story #107)
"Kinda" (Story #118)
"Snakedance" (Story #125)
"The Five Doctors" (Story #129)
"The Awakening" (Story #131)
"Frontios" (Story #132)
"Resurrection of the Daleks" (Story #134)
"The Caves of Androzani" (Story #136)
"Vengeance on Varos" (Story #138)
"Time and the Rani" (Story #144)
"Paradise Towers" (Story #145) + New WHOvian Documentary / Newsbits
"Dragonfire" (Story #147)
"The Happiness Patrol" (Story #149)
"The Greatest Show in the Galaxy" (Story #151)
"Doctor Who: The Movie" (aka TVM) - McGann)
Merrick's Personal Journey With The Doctor (How Merrick Got Hooked On DOCTOR WHO)
"The Crash of the Elysium" (Manchester version - interactive DOCTOR WHO adventure)
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Dec. 21, 2012, 8:39 a.m. CST
I liked the Christmas Invasion, half of the Runaway Bride, End of Time, and Christmas Carol. The Christmas Carol one is one of my favorite Doctor Who stories. I didn't expect it would be but it has become it. There is much to it, more than I think the Moff intended, which connects to me and my own philosophical-theological studies. Runaway Bride, the problem for me is the villain. End of Time I think gets too much ill treatment. I love what is done in the end with the Master.
Dec. 21, 2012, 8:43 a.m. CST
They need a scene with a blonde kid and his stuffed tiger, if only for a couple seconds.
Dec. 21, 2012, 8:54 a.m. CST
Ok...now I'm interested. <p> But what about the new arrangement of the theme?!?
Dec. 21, 2012, 9:04 a.m. CST
Difficult to describe. I *really* like it. Highly kinetic opening suggesting cosmic fury. Hard-drving theme arrangement merging 80s sensibilities with Hans Zimmer stylings. Some definite callouts to classic WHO title sequences, but it doesn't feel like a patently "retro" opening. More like a retro vibe/theme arrangement realized with modern "oomph"...
Dec. 21, 2012, 9:43 a.m. CST
Sounds like Moffat and Co. are circling back to doing more traditional, "classic" styled Who - which I will be overjoyed to see if that holds true. I've said before that I was never a big fan of the Williamses (yes, Williamses, not the "Ponds", that very notion rubs me the wrong way) - except I really liked Rory's dad. I wish we could have gotten to know him a lot better. He would have made for a really fun companion, much like Wilfred would have been. I hope that they will someday have an older gent onboard the TARDIS as a regular. I think there's something to be said, and something to be learned from having an older actor around, and an older character that can lend some wisdom to the weekly adventures. The show on the whole over the last few years has become entirely too "whimsical" - as Moffat himself points out in those quotes above. They need to get back to hard-hitting sci-fi stories, and get away from the fairytale nature that they've been using for the last few years. The Doctor isn't supposed to be a magical character that pops up when you least expect him and use whimsy and eccentricity to save the day. He's not supposed to be Tom Bombadil. He's a traveler who happens to show up at the right time and help put things to rights. And I hope they steer the show more in that kind of direction in the future. I don't mind a dark, brooding Doctor either. That makes him more interesting, and more relatable too. Portraying him as some sort of ADHD kid who can't sit still for more than 30 seconds is very annoying to me. (And as I have two kids with ADHD, I get more than enough of that at home, thanks very much.) I look forward to seeing a new portrayal of the Doctor as a brooding, crotchety sort. And having JLC as a really hot new companion can't hurt either. : )
Dec. 21, 2012, 9:56 a.m. CST
The single biggest difference between "classic" Who and modern Who is that the Doctor has shifted from a static icon for the British Superman to a dynamic character who is evolving and reacting to the universe (and its denizens) around him. In a way, it's the difference between Frodo Baggins and Harry Potter!
Dec. 21, 2012, 10 a.m. CST
Y'know the whole "action movie" style to the nu-Who theme music doesn't do anything for me. Part of the unique appeal of it throughout the years has been the otherworldiness created by Ron Grainer/Delia Derbyshire with the original, which despite the updates, still (to my ears at least) sounded "alien" up to the McCoy years. Now, it just seems like generic action show music. For me they need to give it to an electronic artist who could respect the integrity of the original, but modernize it without losing that other-worldy factor. Lose the orchestra, basically...
Dec. 21, 2012, 10:03 a.m. CST
by I am_NOTREAL
I keep NuWho at arm's length (if I get a Time Lord itch I'm most likely to scratch it with an adventure from Drs I - V), but that sounds like it has loads of potential. Always dug the Cybermen. Best stories for my money are Earthshock and Best of Both Worlds Pt 1, which I know is Trek but c'mon.
Dec. 21, 2012, 10:13 a.m. CST
by Paul Crider
I couldn't have said it better myself--I have only liked maybe 2 or 3 of the Smith eps altho he seems like a fine actor--I have been going back to my collection of the old Whos to watch the old take-charge/eccentric Doctor I remember when I first started reading the novelizations back in the early 80's (couldn't get the TV show on our local PBS station here then)--I also sincerely hope the new companion is not as irritating as the recent descriptions have made her sound (She's "a match for the Doctor" Really? Do we want "a match"? The Doctor is supposed the be THE hero, if I'm not mistaken, that why the show is called "DOCTOR WHO", not "Doctor Who and _______")--I thought the Dalek ep that the new companion/actress was in was one of the, if not THE, worst of the series (Doc screams like a little girl in front of her AND the Daleks? I. Don't. Think. So.) Anyway, will keep watching and hoping and supporting the show.
Dec. 21, 2012, 10:31 a.m. CST
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:16 a.m. CST
Is often not the central hero of a given story. From the beginning it has been flexible, sometimes making him the center, sometimes a participant.
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:33 a.m. CST
Although I do think this will be really rather good... I think this will be up in The Christmas Invasion territory... Introduction of a new companion, enough new "shiny" to get excited about... But I will temper my excitement... It's on a bit earlier in the UK, 5.15pm I think... It's got "something for the kids, something for the dads" written all over it !
Dec. 21, 2012, 12:12 p.m. CST
So if Moffat's heading in that direction then that's progress to me. I've never been a big fan of the direction the show's gone since it came back in 2005.
Dec. 21, 2012, 12:17 p.m. CST
I've been banging on for a while about Matts annoying portrayal of the Doctor. It doesn't help that he's so young too.
Dec. 21, 2012, 12:21 p.m. CST
DOCTOR WHO - SEASON 7.2 - THE GANGER'S ADVENTURES! Or vice versa... although, the impact of losing Amy and Rory would have gone... But a new TARDIS interior? Without a regeneration? Consider me intrigued. I stay with the Ganger theory! X-MAS can't come too soon!
Dec. 21, 2012, 12:21 p.m. CST
Film and tv companies seem to think if everything isn't fast and loud kids will think it's boring..........but they're the ones feeding it.
Dec. 21, 2012, 12:28 p.m. CST
He might have brought Dr Who back ( mind you i think it would have come back anyway with or without him) but he said before the show came back that it had to be fast moving and loud cos kids would find it boring otherwise. Again just feeding the ADD monster when there wasn't any need too.
Dec. 21, 2012, 1:12 p.m. CST
The online community by it`s very nature of strength of numbers always considers every potentially exciting option that could be `cool`. I don`t ever remember seeing any enacted in Dr Who or any other show/movie for that matter. Always go with the least option, its generally how TV works unfortunately. Writers tend to lean toward the bland side of creation because it sells to the majority.
Dec. 21, 2012, 1:22 p.m. CST
by Christopher Bynum
Wait, sorry. I thought this was the Star Trek thread.
Dec. 21, 2012, 1:39 p.m. CST
have been getting progressively worse every year. Christmas Invasion good, I liked Runaway Bride, loved Next Doctor, End Of Time was a good-bye to Tennant (I didn't care for the Master/return of the Time Lords thing); after that we hadChristmas Carol which was just OK and then D,W,W which was just painful. I'm hoping this one is better, but not sure with the Silurian and Sontaran.
Dec. 21, 2012, 1:53 p.m. CST
The Doctor: Who's she? Kazran Sardick: Nobody important. The Doctor: Nobody important? Blimey, that's amazing. Do you know in nine hundred years of time and space I've never met anyone who wasn't important before.
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:22 p.m. CST
My blog-post on Christmas Carol explains what I saw in it... though I would add more to it if I wrote it now
Doctor Who is an extraordinary television series – it is, to be sure, my favorite. The newest head-writer-producer, Steven Moffat, is one of the best writers the series has ever had. Even though I sometimes think he adds too many double-entendres, thinking they will please the parents, his stories are filled with so much wit, and intelligent plotting, that the more one views them, the deeper and more thought out the story ends up being. This year, he wrote the Doctor Who Christmas special, based it upon A Christmas Carol (even gave it that title), and in many ways, you have what one expects in a story based upon Dickens: a grumpy old man is changed, and goes from hating Christmas, to being a kind, benevolent benefactor of humanity. But what makes this Christmas story so special is that, while taking on the story and theme of a Christmas Carol, Moffat, probably without knowing what he has done, has produced an episode of Doctor Who which can be used to help explain the notion of grace. Grace perfects nature, taking what good they have and using it to transform the person, sometimes very slowly, into a new creation. Because this is a science fiction story, and the Doctor is the person who takes on the persona of the “ghost of Christmas” to change this story’s Scrooge (Kazran, expertly played by Michael Gambon), what we see is the presentation of how grace changes people in a way that could have been written by Philip K. Dick. Philip K. Dick is the expert of alternative realities; he felt he experienced them, and saw worse worlds than our own, and he felt there was some force which was interacting with history, changing it, perfecting it, and some people like him have memories of both realities. Sometimes he thought it was God, sometimes an alien, sometimes a computer, sometimes Sophia – he was never quite sure what it was, but he felt it had been guiding him and his life. In this story, the Doctor does what Philip K Dick’s “VALIS” or “Zebra” would do: change time. He took the good he saw in Kazran (when, at one point, the Doctor saw Kazran stopped himself from hitting a small child), and worked on it to create the new man. By going back in time, and, starting with Kazran in his youth, the Doctor befriended him and showed him a new way of looking at the world. Kazran remembers his past before meeting the Doctor, and yet finds himself with the new memories; it is having some change on him, but it is only something else, something even greater, which can bring his full redemption: beauty. Beauty will save the world, and in here, beauty saved Kazran. His father had a collection of frozen people, used as collateral; one of them was Abigail. When Kazran first meets her, he is a young boy, and she is a woman who was let out and charms a flying shark (cue Saturday Night Live); it was wounded and Kazran wanted, with the Doctor’s help, to find a way to save it. Through her ability to sing to the shark, she was able to help lead it back to its proper place and live. Afterward, she had to go back to her frozen state, but not before the boy Kazran says this is going to happen every Christmas Eve: that the Doctor and Kazran would let her out, and have fun together. And so we see a series of adventures they have, as Kazran grows older and, eventually, becoming a young man falls in love with her – and she with him. Her beauty, internal and external, has an effect on Kazran, and makes him different. Through her beauty, he learns love, and knows love. Von Balthasar’s aesthetics are shown in dramatic form here. But then, it becomes a wounded love when Kazran learns she is dying. He then wants to stop his association with the Doctor, and loses his hope, his love, and follows his father’s ways once again. What the Doctor tries to do, to help change him, seems to backfire, and yet, in the end, the Doctor has one last trick. I don’t want to ruin the story for those who have yet to see it: but it is a unique twist on “The Ghost of Christmas Future.” It brings out all the good the Doctor has nurtured in Kazran. The ending is the marvel of a redeemed soul, redeemed by the aid of the Doctor, but more importantly, by the power of beauty to produce love, a love which, once pure, leads to spiritual healing.
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:29 p.m. CST
When I zoom in on the highly embiggenable version of the above pic, I swear I can almost make out some of the Gallifreyan writing on it as seen on The Doctor's watch in Human Nature / Family of Blood. Now it simply could be the same watch without his essence, consciousness, whatever stored in it and now he's just using as a plain 'ol watch, which would be cool as a nice little easter egg. HOWEVER, the geek in me wonders if it will have some larger part to play later on, what with the 50th anniversary coming up maybe he'll spring it open and out will pop McCoy, Mcgann, Eccleston, Tennant etc. in some form or another. I know, I know. Total geekboy fanwanking but still, fun to speculate.
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:38 p.m. CST
Nice catch! Didn't notice it, or think to look. Very cool. Shades of doctor pasts 'popping out'? That would be interesting to think parts of the doctor are always there, stored like sexy stores old control rooms to be used in emergencies.
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:42 p.m. CST
Some great ideas but they didn't gel. Finally got some major use out of the sonic not working on wood. Liked the mom in driving the whatever-it-was although they could have said she was a Rosie The Rivetter type for an easier explanation of how she could drive the thing. I thought Christmas Carol went unresolved. Happy or not, she was dying and they kind of skipped the inevitable ending to that. The Titanic episode I LOVE but only because Kylie Minoque shows up in a maidservant uniform. yum ;-) Can not resist her. Even if she showed up in a parka. I wonder what they'll do next Christmas. Maybe some kind of threat involving something nasty hiding in Chrismas Crackers. Or someone wants a sonic screwdriver for Christmas but The Doctor says "You'll shoot your eye out."
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:57 p.m. CST
That would be a twist
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:57 p.m. CST
Well done sir!!!!
Dec. 21, 2012, 2:59 p.m. CST
Yes, last year's story was a big disappointment for me, especially since it had so much potential. And the one nagging thing with the Christmas Carol is the Doctor not saving her life. As for next year, what I think they need to do (for a Christmas story, and yes, should still be Christmas-themed) is simple: Charlie Brown.
Dec. 21, 2012, 3:26 p.m. CST
Utter shite even if Kylie looked nice in her maids uniform.
Dec. 21, 2012, 3:58 p.m. CST
Go .. go now and watch.
Dec. 21, 2012, 4:01 p.m. CST
no wonder he doesn't tell anyone his real name! I guess I'm the young punk who loves everything about NU WHO. I have been slowly getting into the classic who. The pace is slower and special effects less than impressive on old who, but that makes it really cool to me. I like the electronic music alot, but Murry Gold's scores are excellent on modern who. Anyway, back when watching Freaks and Geeks I didn't know who Tom Baker was, now I think he is awesome. I figure with so much going in the Doctor's mind, how could he not have ADD or ADHD, Doctor Donna almost over heated from all the mind activity. Be honest we will all have ADD in the future with the internet and pads and i phones, no one will be able to focus. Anyway consider me envious as the mod has already seen the XMASS special, but shame on you for opening your presents early. I'm too old for gifts, I only give now, but Doctor Who is my gift. Thanks Moff and Smith, and the British. I don't care about football
Dec. 21, 2012, 4:06 p.m. CST
I am a pure fan not a critic at all, but yeah Voyage of the Damned was my least favorite. You mean they made another Titanic after the last one crashed? A Titanic space ship? That should go well. The visuals with the gold angels carrying the Doctor up as they flew upwards was cool. Something about the Doctor flying in his suit with his Chuck Taylor's makes for a cool video. I think I'm gay for Doctor Who and I'm not gay. They haven't made a Who porn parody yet? Thank goodness but it would be fun to be the Doctor with all his hot companions. OK that was close I almost went gay. Sucks for the Ponds having to live in the past without modern technology though. How is the ADD or ADHD medicine? I need some, my comments are too long and rambling with no point.
Dec. 21, 2012, 4:55 p.m. CST
by Mac Styran
I REALLY hope the new opening will do the theme justice. Maybe a little bit like mine? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=USTsaUckmV8 [End]Shameless self-promotion. :) As for the Christmas special ... I actually like that Amy and Rory are "history" and they do a bit of a reset. Not that the last two seasons were bad ... far from it ... but I STILL have dozens of questions that Moffat has to deliver the answers to. One can hope, ey?
Dec. 21, 2012, 5:58 p.m. CST
by Rebel Scumb
but then I just don't really like christmas in general High hopes for this one though just because of the guest list and its old timey setting
Dec. 21, 2012, 6:21 p.m. CST
Specifically an accent that isn't developed until after the American colonies revolt and form their own nation? Seriously, I half expect to find out she's been working with Professor Henry Higgins.
Dec. 21, 2012, 6:51 p.m. CST
In case you haven't noticed, the Tardis (which ultimately is what is providing the translation service) has an eccentric fangirl fixation with a certain corner of time and space.
Dec. 21, 2012, 6:57 p.m. CST
Or Torchwank as I like to call it.
Dec. 21, 2012, 8:13 p.m. CST
I loved Christmas Invasion. I thought Runaway Bride was decent. I enjoyed Voyage of the Damned (yeah, I'm the guy); I thought it was great fun, terrific atmosphere, and of course Kylie was smokin'. Next Doctor was not a fave of mine. I found the female antagonist to be boring and bland, and the Cybermen did nothing for me. And the Cyber-puppies or whatever just looked AWFUL. David Morrissey was awesome, though. End of Time is magnificent, if nothing else for the final half hour-ish: the Master's redemption, the scene with Wilf and the radiation (still chokes me up when the Doctor says, 'It's my honor'), the farewells...and the most amazing regeneration scene ever. Christmas Carol...hmm. It was beautiful, with terrific performances from a top-notch cast. The kid was great, Gambon was great, Jenkins was good and gorgeous...but the story was a non-starter for me. The Doctor needs someone to cooperate with him, so he goes and fiddles with the guy's past to make him nice? Really? That's just not Doctor Who to me. The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe was awful. Just awful. I'm hoping for better. I'm hoping this is Matt Smith's best Xmas special yet. Please, Moff. Can you please arrange that? Oh, and enough with the ADHD comments. TV doesn't cause ADHD. It's a physiological condition. Do you blame anime for causing epilepsy?
Dec. 21, 2012, 8:28 p.m. CST
Not saying it's the only cause but I can see how all this fast paced speed freak tv (like a lot of nu Dr Who) can make kids hyperactive. Especially with someone like Matt Smith running about like a loon and talking a thousand words per mili second.
Dec. 21, 2012, 9:13 p.m. CST
...this is my cue to say that End of Time is my favorite NuWho, by a very large margin. I loved the central idea of the "drumbeat" sound (first introduced in The Sound of Drums), which the writers use almost like a leitmotif in an opera, and which accumulates not one but two clever double-meanings... It occurred to me while I was watching that the "drumbeat" sounds like the opening motif of Beethoven's Fifth. There's a possibly made-up story about that motif which I have just now, to refresh my memory, looked up on wikipedia. Here's the story (as told by Beethoven's assistant): "[Beethoven] pointed to the beginning of the first movement and expressed in these words the fundamental idea of his work: 'Thus Fate knocks at the door!'" I suppose the writers must have known that story, right? If not, it's a hell of a coincidence. Either way, Clever Double Meaning #3 slips into place. So much else to admire in the ep. Loved the Master's eating disorder, loved the trick he pulled off at the end of Part 1. Both plot developments are insanely over-the-top and yet rich with symbolic meaning. Loved the mythology-expanding revelations about the Time War and about the nature of regeneration. I loved the Doctor's speech to the Master about how he didn't need to own the universe, how it was enough just to see it; one day I found myself more or less repeating that speech to my three-year-old daughter, as she skipped around a Target pointing at everything that caught her eye and suggesting "let's buy this, let's buy that". The strange thing is that it totally worked on her. Thanks, NuWho. I loved that Wilf finally got to take a ride in the Tardis, since I'd been waiting for that particular shoe to drop since the minute we met Wilf... ...which, unfortunately, brings me to the biggest damn plot hole in this or any Who episode. Did anyone else think that the mysterious lady-in-the-television (the Doctor's mom, according to Moff) was incredibly unhelpful? I mean, instead of dropping cryptic fortune-cookie hints about what was to come, why couldn't she just tell the Doctor to let Wilf sit this one out?
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:12 p.m. CST
by Kathryn Gail
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:17 p.m. CST
by Kathryn Gail
Merrick, your top vid is the 60s song, then there's the pic of the new interior, then The Great Detective, the. . . Dinosaurs on a Spaceship trailers? I LOVE dinosaurs! Every episode should have dinosaurs (or mammoths) (with Churchill actually riding one). But it reads like maybe you meant to put Vastra Investigates there. . .? http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p012q4yl ~which is on the ADVENTure calendar at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p011gpsb/features/doctor-who-adventure-calendar-2012 in case anyone missed it!
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:23 p.m. CST
by Kathryn Gail
I've been totally enjoying http://www.radiotimes.com/doctorwho lately, too. Haha--especially the wallpapers at the bottom of the page, which are so good yet so snarkable at the very same time! Who needs D10 Tennant when you can have Up All Night Bad Mood Not Actually Ordering Anything at the Cafe Tennant? AND Gillan as a sexy chestburster (that gray wolf didn't have a chance. . . maybe it was a BAD wolf. . . ).
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:43 p.m. CST
ADHD is widely misunderstood, but it's not something caused by TV or anything else. It's a medical condition; a physiological one. TV doesn't cause violence and it doesn't cause ADHD.
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:43 p.m. CST
by Kathryn Gail
and most especially not by Matt or Murray nor Murray's enormous orchestra
Dec. 21, 2012, 11:45 p.m. CST
You've described EXACTLY why I love End of Time, but far more eloquently than I could have.
Dec. 22, 2012, 3:44 a.m. CST
Well, well, well. Shatner would like to play the Master. The Moff says he can't be because Simms is. I say let him be the Master; an earlier version of the Master, in a two-Master story. The Two Masters. Let him somehow be the Master before the Time War, somehow breaking the laws of time.... and in the end, let him be transformed into the decrepit Master of the Tom Baker era.. http://trekmovie.com/2012/12/21/william-shatner-as-doctor-whos-next-master/
Dec. 22, 2012, 9:16 a.m. CST
...what would Oswin sound like if she spoke Canadian? ;-) Besides hot I mean. What language would it sound like if she said "I was having Timbits and drinking a twofour, eh, and I ended up spilling Vico all over the chesterfield but luckily I had serviettes."
Dec. 22, 2012, 9:25 a.m. CST
Time Lord accidentally stumbles through a sci fi convention on his way to something. Flies by a steady shot of Shatner's autograph table, then comes back, asking for an autograph, saying "I'm like your ultimate fan." Just babbling. Shatner, annoyed, because everyone says that. The Doctor runs off(screen) again. The comes back and nitpicks some little bit of Star Trek lore - like the resort planet is actually Rigel IV not II and its really called [some long impossible ridiculous name]. Shatner looks away to one side and yells, "Security!"
Dec. 22, 2012, 11:18 a.m. CST
by Kathryn Gail
~if the Doctor was a babblingly nervous fan of Boston Legal, or T.J. Hooker, or Shatner's books, or his horses. . . shoving past convention fans to get a picture of a horse autographed. . . You know if they did a spoken-word album together for charity. . .
Dec. 22, 2012, 11:41 a.m. CST
by Kathryn Gail
. . .on the SONGtaran Carols short from the BBC/Who ADVENTure calendar on Friday: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p012ytxy I completely missed that, yesterday!
Dec. 22, 2012, 1:44 p.m. CST
Yet for some bizarre reason only known to those at the B.B.C. they chose Matt Smith. Morisey had that gravitas needed for the role unlike Matt and his schoolboy on speed act.
Dec. 22, 2012, 1:47 p.m. CST
i'm saying this constant fast loud pace in programmes like Dr Who with a manic Doctor doesn't help things in the overall picture of hyperactivity in people--especially kids.
Dec. 22, 2012, 4:23 p.m. CST
by mark howard
was inspired casting, and I still do. Moff always said he had an alien quality, and he does. Looking forward to the Christmas episode, and hopefully this year it will actually live up to the expectations.
Dec. 22, 2012, 5:07 p.m. CST
Here's a blog post I found by a writer I follow concerning what all there is to like about DOCTOR WHO. I think it sums it up pretty well: http://bloggersaveus.blogspot.com/2012/09/whats-to-like-about-doctor-who.html
Dec. 22, 2012, 5:54 p.m. CST
by Rebel Scumb
for some reason they weren't on black friday this year but as of thursday most of them are 25%-50% off A good time to help complete your collections
Dec. 22, 2012, 7:56 p.m. CST
It passes the smell test so far. Well, there's that nasty ego-scent-rism emanating from Matt Smith but that's part of being The Doctor. If you're playing someone about whom the universe revolves you really can't be blamed for thinking that might be a little bit true. And that's the conundrum. You see, for us, the secret society of hiders-behind-the-couch, Matt Smith is many steps removed from The Doctor. Ordinarily actors are just 1 step away - there's the actor, there's the character, the one inhabits the other, we throw bouquets or brickbats, that's all there is. But an actor playing the doctor inhabits just one of his many faces and personalities. There's the actor, there's the incarnation, and like a Russian doll there's (at least) 11 layers inside. In the centre, containing all of them inside out, is Sexy. Likewise it seems Smith gets to play and we can only watch. When he laughs, the Doctor laughs. When he cries or broods or larks about, the Doctor does too, like a puppet. Then again Smith cannot violate the fundamentals or speak or act as the Moff does not instruct. The Moff is a loyal servant of our secret society. It's us lot who sit around in our big leather-backed easy chairs in the ersatz Diogenes, smoking and quaffing away in our silence. We are silent, but if we didn't care for the Moff's tastes, the Moff would be replaced. And if the replacement didn't satisfy us, there might be a hiatus. One year or 25, or longer, it doesn't matter. We would still be here, waiting patiently for the Doctor's next adventure. And it would come, in time. Because the Doctor - the forlorn fellow outside of time - is an inevitable fiction. He must feature in stories of cultures on alien worlds. Unlike Santa Claus, who must repeat himself with the season, unlike Christ, who merely regenerates a single time and leaves, more like Krishna or Shiva, whose avatars come again and again, or vice versa inside of Tibetan tropes in Planet of the Spiders, the Doctor is a universal. It hardly matters whether The Doctor is physically possible. Even if he were, the odds of your actually meeting him, or meeting anyone who meets him, are basically zero. Because even if you did, once, the wibbly-wobbly universe would shift around, and in most of the wobbles you don't. What matters is what you believe. And for me the Doctor happily fulfills my internal need for a deity in whom to believe. I don't mean I believe the Doctor exists, or can exist. I mean I believe in The Doctor as the thread of Christmas, the harbinger of the beautiful box from which wonders emerge.
Dec. 23, 2012, 8 a.m. CST
She is Hot. I would kiss her and things.
Dec. 23, 2012, 11:28 a.m. CST
by jason baum
so, you know how the jenna coleman surprise was kept a complete secret from the world, despite early viewings of AOTD? i'm wondering if you think there is going to be another shocking ace up the sleeve in 'the snowmen', that has already been viewed, but is also being (WONDERFULLY) kept a secret? i felt the coleman surprise showed a lot of class by those who had seen early screenings, and also huge respect for the show and its entire team by allowing us to view it as they intended - not spoiled weeks ahead. i would be beyond delighted if we were treated to another twist in the same vein. just wondering if you think that's a possibility. thanks bud, cannot wait to jump on the boards during the episode!!!!! happy holidays to you guys, talk to you soon!
Dec. 23, 2012, 11:42 a.m. CST
@charlieboy: Ben Wishaw (the new Q from Bond..) would've been inspired casting for a young Doctor...(link)
Some of Matt Smith has grown on me over time, but on the whole, I find him just too grabby, needy, and attention-deflicted to really carry the role - reminds me of my sister in-law... Daniel Craig's intro to him I think underscores the arrogance, aloofness & intelligence you'd expect guy as old & dangerous as the Doc to radiate: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCNb5QDtc18
Dec. 23, 2012, 11:43 a.m. CST
...why flush your hard-earned cheese on something that's out there floating in the ether 7x24x365?
Dec. 23, 2012, 12:05 p.m. CST
Hand-shandy time I think !
Dec. 23, 2012, 8:43 p.m. CST
It really looks like Moffet is intent on making any series other than Dr. Who. Lately, these all look like some sort of Science Fiction comedy. His first series was the adventures of Pond and Rory and this one just looks like he's trying to redo Red Dwarf. It just seems like the whole scope of the series has become so small under the control of Moffett--too many throw away episodes. Don't get me wrong there have been a couple of really good ones--like the Van Gogh episode, but the Vast Toffey MN--just seems too willing to go for the quick laugh or worse the easy, depressed, life is horrible heart-strings--and too often his characters act illogically with their only purpose being to further an outlandish and over-the-top plot. Honestly, by the time the series was done with Amy and Rory--I was so happy to see them go that the hellishness of their departure just seemed like bathos. Now with this last series and moving forward, Moffet's characters seem like muppets or the cast of gumby--characters that are types or tropes--with no real internal motivation--just one liners and character types. This just doesn't feel like Dr. Who--but instead feels more like M wants to use this vehicle to write about anything that takes his fancy. So, why am I writing this, obviously, its not just to knock SM, or the series. But, rather, I hope to make my dissatisfaction known to hopefully get the series back on track. If that does take a different writing crew, I understand, but that isn't my goal. Anyway, I am very interested in seeing if I am the only one who has had a problem with the show since SM took the writing reigns.
Dec. 24, 2012, 6:41 p.m. CST
by jason baum
THIS is why Merrick has one of the best 'who-boards' on the web. holy shit that is an inspired idea! i feel it's too late now, as he will no doubt be blowing up on the big screen, but so far, he is the only name ive heard who i would be excited to see after smith. HOWEVER let me be clear - i am not in any way shape or form looking forward to smith's departure. Tennant is my doctor, but somehow during smith's tenure i have come to enjoy him damn near as much as i did david T. i really don't know if i'll be able to welcome #12 with an open mind when the time comes. anybody else heard any names thrown around that have got you excited - or at least not terrified?
Dec. 24, 2012, 8:53 p.m. CST
...and best of all, he's actually INTERESTED http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=yHIJ4or1nCc
Dec. 26, 2012, 9:14 a.m. CST
Don't know where they're going with the whole Clara/Oswin thing, but they gots me hooked!
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