11:45 AM CST USA - FRIDAY AUGUST 8, 2014
Likely leaked from within the Cardiff screening mentioned below, here’s a spy-cam view of the new title sequence for DOCTOR WHO Season/Series 8.
I quite like it.
====== ORIGINAL DOCBACK FOLLOWS ======
…having survived another San Diego Comic-Con (the reason there was no Docback two weeks ago) and my second cross-country move in four months (the reason there was no Docback last week). As some of you may know, I’d moved to San Diego earlier in the year, it didn’t work out in any regard, and I pretty much loathed the city. So, I fell back to Austin, where I am now rather content.
We’re hurtling towards the official reveal of Season/Series 8, set to debut August 23 with an episode called Deep Breath. The script and workprint for this installment were famously leaked about a month ago - hinting at a product which appears to offer a very different style of WHO than we’ve seen in the show’s recent history. Artistically, in terms of concept and performance, etc. Early footage also suggests Peter Capaldi’s take on the Doctor will be less flamboyant and more subtly edged than many had conjectured. A teeny smidgen of his performance appears in footage below.
Perhaps appropriately considering Capaldi’s more subdued tenor in the part, the overall ramp-up to Season/Series 8 feels a tad more understated than we’ve seen in recent years. The show’s official Comic-Con presence was basically nil- save for thew traditional BBC America booth hocking official merchandise, some cosplayers (way, way, way too manny red fezzes…damn it, Moffat, don’t do that to us again - just, don’t), and the standard dealers booths selling Sonic Screwdrivers and whatnot. One reason this is so? Because the show was still in production at the time of Comic-Con, and no personage from the production was able to break free to attend SDCC (my understanding is that the subsequent “world tour” was, in part, a compensatory measure).
I’d bet good money that the more understated ramp-up is also something of a deliberate choice: there’s never a value in overselling a thing, as has been done with DOCTOR WHO in the recent past. This time around, it feels like we’re being allowed to shape our own hopes and expectations, rather than being told what we should be hoping for and expecting. A subtle, but significant (and potentially very valuable) shift in approach.
THE MOFFATEER SAYS MORE DOCTOR WHO COMING - DIGITALLY!!
“We’ll certainly do some more. We’ll do more prequels and stuff. I’ve been in to talk to the channel controller of iPlayer and say ‘We need proper money for it’, and they’re very keen. And we don’t call them prequels, we don’t call them minisodes, we just call them Doctor Who. That’s all they are. As I say, why not do an episode that’s ten minutes? Or an episode that’s half an hour? It depends what it suits.”
…says Moffat in THIS piece over at SFX.
This is a very, very smart move: there’s no reason in hell DOCTOR WHO should not have an amplified presence with original content online, especially given how well some of the DOCTOR WHO shorts have played (Night of the Doctor, for example.)
However, if they’re going to do this, and I can not stress this strongly enough, I deeply, passionately believe they need to use said digital episodes to help lessen the gap between seasons. I.E. NOT juts as “prequels” or side stories - but their own entities entirely from time to time. It may be a year between formal series, but…if we received a new canonical minisode every month or two? This could change the playing field in terms of series perception, better crystalize and stabilize audiences, and reduce the overall frustration and tension experienced by the fan community. These droughts - are far too long. The dearth, far too costly, clunky, and unnecessary in this day and age. Hopefully they’re on the way to making amends?
BBC REPORT ON CARDIFF PREMIERE BRINGS US BRIEF CLIPS OF CAPALDIDOC!!
AS MENTIONED ABOVE, DEEP BREATH PREMIERED IN CARDIFF THIS WEEK!!
Because British people are bastards this time of year.
Reports from the screening suggest that, indeed, my previous assessment of what kind of show S8 appears to be was more or less correct - indicating that DW has texturally changed along with swapping out its lead.
I love this - DW’s ability to morph and re-shape as a series is unique in a historical perspective, and…without a doubt…is a mammoth contributor to the show’s longevity.
DEEP BREATH SEES STANDALONE DVD/BLU RELEASE SEPTEMBER 8!!
Like, two weeks after it airs.
The issuance will reportedly include the rather unfortunate DOCTOR WHO LIVE: THE NEXT DOCTOR special on which Capaldi’s assumption of the role was announced. You know, the one which felt more like an AMERICAN/POP IDOL episode?
Interestingly, all news of this release is coming out of UK. No official word on whether, or if, US will see a similar release - although it does seem almost certain.
HORNORSILK REVIEWS THE DESTROY THE INFINITE BIG FINISH AUDIO!!
Fourth Doctor Adventures 3.06 Destroy the Infinite
Written By: Nicholas Briggs
One of the great things about Big Finish Doctor Who is that it has developed a great universe for the Doctor to exist. While I believe there are too many secondary box sets being made (who can afford them all let alone listen to them?), there is still a “real world” sense that comes from this. The Doctor’s universe is full, and he doesn’t always have to be there for the universe to continue on.
Some of the ideas created by Big Finish to populate and establish their cosmology works quite well. One of the best examples of this is the “Web of Time.” We see more of how time works with its own matrix that needs to be preserved. There are places and times where the Doctor is freer to interfere, but no interference lacks consequences to the overall time-space map. This establishes boundaries for the Doctor and his companions better than what we see with New Who and its “fixed points” in time.
But, with as many intriguing ideas developed by Big Finish, we find many which I think do not work. Some are close to working, while others are extreme misfires. One which I think is close to success but still fails is the gaseous entity known as the Eminence. Where it is used, the story feels tired, and uninspired. And so, knowing that this entity is the focus of the newest Fourth Doctor adventure, I did not go in expecting much.
Listening to the story I tried to figure it out what exactly it is about the Eminence that has left me cold. I came to the conclusion that a part of the problem lies with the stories it has been in: they have been short, too short, to establish any serious sense of threat or intrigue, and it is something epic which needs to be made for it to become the grand villain Big Finish wants to establish. But then I figured out another problem, something which I think is highlighted in this story. The Eminence creates “Infinite Warriors” which it controls by having them inhale a part of itself as “the breath of forever.” Those who breathe in the Eminence become part of it as they are taken over by it. And so, the Eminence is a gaseous retread of the “Borg.” There are differences, since the “Cybermen” aspect of the Borg is left out, but the incorporation of the person into some group consciousness has been done better and for better effect with the Borg, and so if this idea is to be reused, it needs something new, something fresh to differentiate it. I admit in Dark Eyes 2 there had been an attempt to do this, making the Eminence a major threat so that the Doctor needed the help of the Daleks to overcome it, I feel the story did not do enough.
There have been a few questions which have remained with us about the Eminence. Perhaps one of the most important deals with the Doctor’s first meeting with it. We were told, when we first encountered them in the Fourth Doctor Adventures, that the Doctor knew of it and had been incorporated by it before. Somehow he was able to break free and defeat it, but there was always the sense that he did so at great loss. He did not want to talk about it. There seemed to be some big secret, some possible shame that the Doctor wanted to forget.
In Destroy the Infinite, we get that story, and, as expected, my imagination of that first meeting created a greater idea of what the Doctor was afraid of than what we get in this adventure. The story begins with the Doctor and Leela encountering a man who has just been given the breath of forever. He is being transformed into an Infinite Warrior. But before he loses himself, he asks the Doctor and Leela to get the rebels to help protect his family. And that is what the Doctor and Leela try to do as they discover who and want the Infinite Warriors and Eminence are. They get involved in the fight of humanity against the Eminence. The Doctor gets captured, and apparently transformed into the leader of the Infinite Warriors. As that leader he is given control of their major battleship, the Infinite, while Leela tries to work with the rebels to find a way to counter-attack and destroy.
The story, being one cd, is again too short. This is what turns the Doctor’s first tale with the Eminence, which could have been interesting, into something underwhelming. If this story had to be told only on one cd, we could have had some indication of a jump in time to indicate the Doctor had been with the Eminence for sometime, doing major harm to some systems in the galaxy, to give us some semblance of what was at stake and what the Doctor had to do in order to overcome the Eminence.
The best part of the story is Leela’s work with the rebels; while cliché, she is the savage who shows those who believe themselves civilized what they need to do in order to win the war. She is given much to do, and it suits her. Tom Baker is also given much to do, and he really fits with the role of the Doctor on audio, much better than he did in Day of the Doctor.
Despite all of this, this is perhaps my favorite Eminence story to date. While too short, and I would have loved some dark sub-story with the Doctor working with the Eminence, it still has things to enjoy. Tom Baker and Louise Jameson continue to give great performances, which make the adventure enjoyable even if the plot is underwhelming. Overall a solid 7/10.
DOCBACK CODE OF CONDUCT
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) 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.