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Wheat Loaf
Feb 13, 2012

by FactsAreUseless


I guess the moral of the story is that Moffat knows that, whatever we may think of it, the Hugo Awards people eat this kind of thing up, right?

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Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Stealthweasel posted:

The cloister bell also starts ringing at the end which is weird if there's nothing out there, although possibly the TARDIS just got scared too.

It was the end of the universe, maybe the Toclafane were coming!

Ludicro posted:

Never seen any of Everdraed's work then?

To be fair, after his "Loss" gif I think his "gifs" are more classified as modern art

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at Sep 13, 2014 around 23:19

NowonSA
Jul 19, 2013

I am the sexiest poster in the world!


I was digging the episode, but that was because I was sure there was an actual alien creature out there. I do think if they're going to do a "it's all in the Doctor's head!" ending, the way they did it is the best way they could. I would have preferred for there to be an actual creature though. The episode leaves it plausible to introduce such a creature in the future, but I doubt they will.

I agree that "invisible creature that only does things that have another explanation" is a great idea though, and it would've made for a suspenseful "we're trapped in this building and a monster is trying to kill us all" episode. Kind of a final destination-style threat. I suppose that would have been the ultimate evolution of all three concepts the Doctor put on the board: Best hunter because no one can see it, or even be convinced it exists, best defence is the same as best offence, and best hider too. I'd love to see what the Doctor comes up with to trap or defeat the creature, if it's so good at hiding it can't be seen or sensed.

Edit: This could just build up to those creatures actually existing though, and the "plausible explanations" the Doctor was giving actually being incorrect. We do see the monster behind them out of focus, and the Tardis was freaking out and acting as if someone was trying to get inside it while at the last planet, so there is some stuff left unexplained. That could be really rad actually, set up a Silence-ish enemy whose powers are even more bullshit than the Silence were. The Listens .

NowonSA fucked around with this message at Sep 13, 2014 around 23:24

Republican Vampire
Jun 2, 2007



Android Blues posted:

This episode was very bold and clever. Its structure is weird but that's because it's a trick: it acts like it's going to be a Moffat-esque spooky sense-based monster episode, and then near the end reveals that all along it's been a personal piece about the Doctor's desperate desire to see for himself what it was that was under his bed that night, in a way that places him as vulnerable and questioning rather than tally-ho, seeing off the monster of the week with a surge of Murray Gold.

It wasn't my favourite of the episodes so far this season, but I thought that willingness to play around with structure and subvert the cliche was really interesting and made it one to remember.

Doing something like that is not an excuse for producing a structural mess that continually fucks up its own momentum. The two things are separate issues. The subversion's arguably less effective because we keep getting shunted over to Danny and Orson in ways that either break tension or crack up narrative in a way that doesn't really add thread that Moffat's doing a twist on.

Also it's dumb as butt heck because we know there really are about a half dozen monsters that do that so the whole 'lol there's no monsters just the doctor being hung up on a childhood memory" thing doesn't work. It doesn't make sense unless you consider it a complete vacuum, in which case, what's the point?

Dabir
Nov 10, 2012


Something broke the air shell around Orson's ship. It couldn't have been just from the door opening, or it would have been a pretty pointless air shell.

LividLiquid
Apr 13, 2002

BITCOIN BATMAN

Loved it. Loved everything about it. I loved keeping The Doctor's childhood vague, I loved the entire episode being about 12's introspection, I loved them coming right out and saying that Pink is going to be a companion, and most of all, I loved seeing 12 really go. He showed a much wider range of emotions here than he has so far.

The whole thing was magical.

Also, what's a cloister bell?

SNAKES N CAKES
Sep 6, 2005

DAVID GAIDER
Lead Writer


Republican Vampire posted:

The subversion's arguably less effective because we keep getting shunted over to Danny and Orson in ways that either break tension or crack up narrative in a way that doesn't really add thread that Moffat's doing a twist on.

Being scared of monsters under your bed is like dating, and if you're brave you get to kiss the guy you love/join the army. There's something for all ages in this episode.

marktheando
Nov 4, 2006



LividLiquid posted:

Also, what's a cloister bell?

It's the bell that sounds when the TARDIS itself is in danger.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJx88JvEjAg

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


LividLiquid posted:

Also, what's a cloister bell?

It's a TARDIS warning alarm that basically acts as shorthand for,"poo poo's about to get serious."

Gaz-L
Jan 28, 2009


Jerusalem posted:

It was the end of the universe, maybe the Toclafane were coming!

Speaking of, I did like the little "The TARDIS isn't supposed to come this far" nod, which immediately made me think of Dark Eyes, which opens with the Eighth Doctor trying to disable exactly those safeguards.

Emerson Cod
Apr 14, 2004
Here I was just about to tell you all to shut the hell up, and then you stopped talking so I didn't have to.

Ha, also in the trailer they showed a Slitheen, the Trickster, Captain John Hart (James Marster's character from Torchwood, and an alien I didn't recognize.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Gaz-L posted:

Speaking of, I did like the little "The TARDIS isn't supposed to come this far" nod, which immediately made me think of Dark Eyes, which opens with the Eighth Doctor trying to disable exactly those safeguards.

This actually came up in the classic series as well, I think it's in Frontios where the TARDIS travels further forward in time than it is supposed to and gives a warning to the Doctor. The human race has retreated to a planet to escape an undefined threat which you could conceivably argue could have been an early example of the human retreat from inevitable extinction mentioned in Utopia.

Heft
Mar 31, 2010


Probably my favorite of this season so far, and definitely the strongest initial impression.

Regarding the "monster", I think it's deliberately ambiguous whether or not there was actually a monster. Personally, I think there probably was one, but I also think we're not supposed to be sure one way or another. After all, part of the spookiness of the dark is not knowing what, if anything, is actually there. Either way, I'm fine with it. Also, the fear of the monster is the point of the episode, not the monster itself (which, if it does exist, would seem to be almost always harmless anyway - just spooky).

It's definitely not an 'origin story' for the doctor, and it doesn't really show or tell us anything out of line with what the show (at least since the revival) has already established or implied. Leaving behind the toy soldier was a bit much, but everything else was handled quite well, I thought, and it allowed more growth for Clara (one of the few things this season has been pretty consistently getting right).

Admittedly, the structure did seem kind of weird in the middle (mostly just the awkward date redux), but I don't think it really encumbered the story, so I don't have a problem with it.

Most importantly, I thought the story used all of its principal characters (The Doctor, Clara, and Danny) well, using the plot to give us further information and insight into all of them, and as that's been one of the weaknesses of the last several years of Moffat's writing, that counts for a lot.

Republican Vampire
Jun 2, 2007



SNAKES N CAKES posted:

Being scared of monsters under your bed is like dating, and if you're brave you get to kiss the guy you love/join the army. There's something for all ages in this episode.

The second equivalence is especially hosed up. It's almost as if Moffat is just jumbling things together under the broad heading of fear in order to fake having an interesting idea.

Also could you take over the threads from Trin? Something ala DA2 is way more fitting considering what's coming.

PrBacterio
Jul 19, 2000


Jerusalem posted:

Maybe it was a Gallifreyan boarding school.
That's just what I assumed it was and frankly the idea it might be an orphanage didn't even occur to me until it was mentioned in this thread, but I'm not a Doctor Who expert by any means so

AndyElusive
Jan 7, 2007



Anytime we get to see more War Doctor I'm happy.

So this was the third color variation of 12's threads in four episodes. Capaldi having fun with the tone of the story reflecting in his costume? Is 12 still deciding?

Cojawfee
May 31, 2006
I think the US is dumb for not using Celsius

I enjoyed the episode overall. Sure it has some organizational problems, but still enjoyable. I don't care if Clara convinces the Doctor that nothing is really there, there was a creature under that blanket. I hope it comes back at some point. It would be stupid to introduce something new and then forget you showed it and then pretend it never existed. I also enjoyed reading this thread and seeing all the goons who lack the imagination to figure out possibilities for why a thing is.

jng2058
Jul 17, 2010

Power Gamer for Hire


AndyElusive posted:

Anytime we get to see more War Doctor I'm happy.

So this was the third color variation of 12's threads in four episodes. Capaldi having fun with the tone of the story reflecting in his costume? Is 12 still deciding?


Maybe he's decided that if Amy (and many of his previous Companions to boot) can change clothes between episodes (and sometimes within an episode) he can too?

Thunderfinger
Jan 15, 2011



jng2058 posted:

Maybe he's decided that if Amy (and many of his previous Companions to boot) can change clothes between episodes (and sometimes within an episode) he can too?

The last three actors had variations of their costumes, why can't he?

SirDan3k
Jan 6, 2001

Trust me, you are taking this a lot more seriously then I am.


It was Clara the whole time, impossible girl linked with his timeline and all that. Shows up at the beginning and at the very end.

Republican Vampire
Jun 2, 2007



Thunderfinger posted:

The last three actors had variations of their costumes, why can't he?

Costume variations are actually an interesting point. Smith alternated between the two looks in his first series because they opted for an extremely expensive designer shirt in two colours. I'm fairly sure they thought that its delicate swirl design would show up on HD, so that was his main variation in that series. They later went cheaper with costume pieces.

With Capaldi, the expensive bits are the boots and the Crombie coat. So they can achieve variation just by switching his shirt colour. Since his shirt seems to be a pretty standard solid colour, it's much less expensive.

RunAndGun
Apr 30, 2011


DoctorWhat posted:

Again - SONTARANS PERVERTING THE COURSE OF HUMAN HISTORY!

Isn't there a VERY long list of aliens that do that? And trying to reconcile them all is impossible, because continuity what?


Jerusalem posted:

I would love that.

"I am an alien who communicates via eye-blinks, I am looking forward to first-contact with these huma.... they... they won't look at me "

They should meet the Venusians. (Eye-blinks, eye-brows, close enough?)


Ludicro posted:

Never seen any of Everdraed's work then?

Anyways, episode had its moments but felt a bit too disjointed and all over the place for my taste. Looks like Into the Dalek remains at the top spot for this season. Capaldi does get better with each story though.

It was still better than last week's. Clara led/dictated the Doctor around far less this episode. Though I can't see him NOT looking at the logs and figuring out what she did during his childhood, especially when he gets bored again. (I mean how fast did he find First Time Traveler?)


Dabir posted:

Something broke the air shell around Orson's ship. It couldn't have been just from the door opening, or it would have been a pretty pointless air shell.

Something wrote "Listen" on the TARDIS chalkboard. And all those accounts throughout history of the same dream?


Heft posted:

Probably my favorite of this season so far, and definitely the strongest initial impression.

Regarding the "monster", I think it's deliberately ambiguous whether or not there was actually a monster. Personally, I think there probably was one, but I also think we're not supposed to be sure one way or another.
...

Very good excuse for a Moffat hook in a future episode also.

terrordactle
Sep 30, 2013


Am I the only one reminded of the Midnight entity? The knocking on the doors on the ship especially. Some ancient thing that's trying to go back in time.

RunAndGun
Apr 30, 2011


terrordactle posted:

Am I the only one reminded of the Midnight entity? The knocking on the doors on the ship especially. Some ancient thing that's trying to go back in time.

Almost, but that thing possessed people.

Cliff Racer
Mar 24, 2007

by Lowtax


Well that was a crummy episode. Loaded with okay ideas but for every good one there was stuff that did pretty substantial damage. Any suspense with Clara and Danny is now gone, not that there was any to begin with and while I wasn't livid with the concept of "young Doctor" like some people were I definitely feel that that got worse the longer it went. If it had just been Clara hearing that he'll "never be a Timelord", hiding under the bed and grabbing the leg that would have been fine. All of the talking she did to him was pretty annoying. Why do all these modern companions have to be shown as being so loving special. Rose, Clara, even Amy and Rory. Can't we just have a bunch of average guys/girls with no special characteristics for once? Then there were little details. "Why aren't there good hiders?" As if that isn't what chameleons or stick bugs or flounders are. Oh and pretty rude of Clara to give away someone else's family heirloom too! Oh, and I was never really scared for anyone's safety (or even weirded out by the monsters) like I was in Blink.

As for good stuff? Capaldi had some good moments. All of his making fun of Clara's looks stuff was good. I had forgotten all about that barn so the "never be a Timelord" thing really caught me off guard. The concept of the "astronaut" in the pub worked really well for me, seems like a classic moment. Clara calling out the Doctor's creepy nursery rhyme as being just that was also appreciated.

Astroman
Apr 8, 2001



I thought it was a great episode. I liked the subversion via "monster at the end of the book." And it coming circle with the War Doctor. I think Moffat has been thinking about this for awhile. I always wondered why the Doctor went to some abandoned building in the middle of nowhere on Gallifrey to set off The Moment. Well now we know.

Oh and yeah, there's no reason the house they were talking about Young Doctor coming into couldn't have been a House.

Slimy Hog
Apr 22, 2008



I liked the episode, but I feel like Clara is taking up too much of the show this season.

Android Blues
Nov 22, 2008



RunAndGun posted:

Something wrote "Listen" on the TARDIS chalkboard. And all those accounts throughout history of the same dream?

Clara points out that it looks like the Doctor's handwriting and makes clear that he quite possibly could have written it down and forgotten, because he's that kind of person. A dream where you wake up partially and hallucinate something else being in the room with you actually is a real phenomenon experienced cross-culturally, because it's one of the ways in which sleep paralysis manifests (also hypothesised as the partial source of incubus/succubus/demon myths).

The Doctor just reads all that material through his own personal lens because he's always wondered what happened to him that night in the barn and is determined to turn it into a grand, heroic unified theory as a way of coping.

There's a very strong case in the episode, and I think this is much of its strength, for there never having been any monster at all. Every single thing the unseen monster "does" is offered an explicit on-screen explanation for what could actually be happening, and then at the end we find out that the thing which caused the Doctor to pursue the monster in the first place was actually a totally explicable event. It's much more about the psychology of fear and how people cope with it than any kind of supernatural adventure.

Cliff Racer
Mar 24, 2007

by Lowtax


Android Blues posted:

Clara points out that it looks like the Doctor's handwriting and makes clear that he quite possibly could have written it down and forgotten, because he's that kind of person. A dream where you wake up partially and hallucinate something else being in the room with you actually is a real phenomenon experienced cross-culturally, because it's one of the ways in which sleep paralysis manifests (also hypothesised as the partial source of incubus/succubus/demon myths).

Yes, but part of that recurring dream is an inability to move (the sleep paralysis.) I should know, I had it happen once and it was scary as heck (a faceless man was feeling around my bed, put his hands on my face, etc.) Its a very scary concept and they really screwed it up and made it non-scary I thought. I suppose they probably had to excise it because a guy just lying still trying to look scared makes for boring television. I suppse that thats probably another reason why the "fear factor" wasn't there. People were hardly ever alone throughout the whole episode. If its just some kid worried about what is under/over his bed then yeah, that can be scary. But he had first one and then two adults in the room with him, so how does it remain scary after that?

Republican Vampire
Jun 2, 2007



Android Blues posted:

There's a very strong case in the episode, and I think this is much of its strength, for there never having been any monster at all. Every single thing the unseen monster "does" is offered an explicit on-screen explanation for what could actually be happening, and then at the end we find out that the thing which caused the Doctor to pursue the monster in the first place was actually a totally explicable event. It's much more about the psychology of fear and how people cope with it than any kind of supernatural adventure.

The leaked script lays it on even heavier. There's no monster. It's just the Doctor acting like someone who's had head trauma.

Android Blues
Nov 22, 2008



I think it's brilliant that for once the Doctor is entirely wrong from foot to toe and his ludicrous, larger-than-life approach to the world is in this case just a way of coping with a basic, very human insecurity.

It's not the kind of plot arc you'd want to see all the time in Doctor Who, but being able to shake up the formula and have the Doctor be operating under a complete and total misapprehension for once is really clever, the more so because it's exactly the sort of theory he would formulate and get really excited about despite its basic improbability.

Senor Tron
May 25, 2006



Cliff Racer posted:

Oh and pretty rude of Clara to give away someone else's family heirloom too!

Not really, it was given to her because it's apparently one of her family heirlooms

Republican Vampire
Jun 2, 2007



Android Blues posted:

I think it's brilliant that for once the Doctor is entirely wrong from foot to toe and his ludicrous, larger-than-life approach to the world is in this case just a way of coping with a basic, very human insecurity.

It's not the kind of plot arc you'd want to see all the time in Doctor Who, but being able to shake up the formula and have the Doctor be operating under a complete and total misapprehension for once is really clever, the more so because it's exactly the sort of theory he would formulate and get really excited about despite its basic improbability.

There are ways to do that without making a plot that's an absolute structural hash, without obnoxiously reitterating every thematic note of every story you've done for the past nine years only to poo poo on it, and without leading to a stupid anti-climax.

gently caress, the last episode did a better job of depicting the inability of the Doctor to cope with real human things, and in that case the real human thing was a slightly stripped down version of Robin Hood.

2house2fly
Nov 14, 2012

You did a super job wrapping things up! And I'm not just saying that because I have to!

I thought it was pretty cool. I did the motion at the start basically reiterating the concept of the Silence and the Doctor apparently having never encountered, say, a chameleon or a stick insect. But the creepy scenes were really good, especially when the Doctor was talking about the hidden creatures showing themselves to the last person alive in the universe and such. I didn't like the dating poo poo, and Clara's little speech at the end didn't resonate with me, but I didn't come out the other side thinking the whole thing had wasted my time. Although it also didn't convince me that Steven Moffat can still write.

TL
Jan 16, 2006

Yeah, it is. Isn't it?

Bowties are cool.

I love how much Capaldi has done so far to stress the Doctor's alienness. It's not that he's trying to be a dick, he just doesn't understand the basic niceties that normal human beings have come to embrace as essential during interaction.

SNAKES N CAKES
Sep 6, 2005

DAVID GAIDER
Lead Writer


Something still opened that door and destroyed the air bubble; and of course the Doctor gets interrupted just as he's asked what he saw. This is Moffat's schtick at this point, introducing something obviously incongruous in a minor episode that takes on ~cosmic significance~ later on. I would be happy if these "monsters" are really just random insanity brought on by the Doctor remembering an event from his childhood (okay, I wouldn't, because I wouldn't like that kind of Doctor, but at least I could easily ignore it), but I'm pretty sure this storyline will get yet another really clever twist.

I also hate the contrivance that DP's great-grandson just happens to get stuck in the perfect place for these hypothetical monsters to reveal themselves, and that he has no objections to fleeing the place he's mortally afraid of, walking around a bar in full astronaut gear to attract Clara's - and only Clara's - attention, then going back to that place for one more night.

They're also really laying on the soldier stuff with the hammiest of fists, from the "broken" unarmed toy soldier (heal my soul Clara, heal my soul!) to the "I don't take orders"/"Do as you're told" final exchange.

SNAKES N CAKES fucked around with this message at Sep 14, 2014 around 04:15

Maxwell Lord
Dec 12, 2008

I am drowning.
There is no sign of land.
You are coming down with me, hand in unlovable hand.

And I hope you die.

I hope we both die.




Grimey Drawer

TL posted:

I love how much Capaldi has done so far to stress the Doctor's alienness. It's not that he's trying to be a dick, he just doesn't understand the basic niceties that normal human beings have come to embrace as essential during interaction.

There's quite a bit of Tom Baker's doc there- that sense that he just doesn't react to things the way humans do.

I quite liked this one, and actually enjoyed some of the structural weirdness- it wasn't yet another "here's a terrifying conceptual monster", it starts as a traditional "spooky" episode but goes on to explore weirder territory, and ends with a fairly strong assertion about a core element of the Doctor's character (he's compelled to explore the unknown because he's scared by it.)

One Swell Foop
Aug 5, 2010

I'm afraid we have no time for codes and manners.

I wonder if the fact that 'Listen' is an anagram of 'silent' is going to play into this somehow.

WarLocke
Jun 6, 2004

You are being watched.


Android Blues posted:

Clara points out that it looks like the Doctor's handwriting and makes clear that he quite possibly could have written it down and forgotten, because he's that kind of person. A dream where you wake up partially and hallucinate something else being in the room with you actually is a real phenomenon experienced cross-culturally, because it's one of the ways in which sleep paralysis manifests (also hypothesised as the partial source of incubus/succubus/demon myths).

The doctor puts the chalk down between pages, stalks back and forth talking to himself, and when he turns back notices the chalk is gone. Only then does the chalk roll out from under the desk(?) and he notices the 'Listen' written on the chalkboard (right after his last question being "What would you DO?!?")

The best thing about this episode is that the monster adapted perfectly to hiding actually managed to hide from the Doctor.

e: And you can see his hands during that scene, so he wasn't carrying the chalk absent-mindedly and then dropped it. Something Else was in the TARDIS with him.

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TheBigBudgetSequel
Nov 25, 2008

It's not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me.


That episode was great until the Gallifrey stuff. Then it became just okay.

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