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Prenton
Feb 17, 2011

Ner nerr-nerrr ner

A question from the end of the last thread:

PriorMarcus posted:

Unkempt posted:


Were there a bunch of RAF pilots in it?

'Invasion: Earth'
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0140743/
Yep. That's the one!

I was too young at the time to remember if it was any good. Probably not.

I remember the black and white episode set in World War 2 being quite good, but the rest was crap. There was a weird dodgy "women's hormones in the water are feminising men!" subplot as well.

Other questions people may have about obscure 90's British Sci fi:

What was that one with Dirty Den in it as the leader of asthmatic alien bodysnatchers? The Uninvited

Him from Ballykissangel in some sort of experimental drug trial that gives people gestalt mind powers? There was a good bit where he psychically convinces a group of people they've shot themselves despite the gun not being loaded Oktober

Him from Peak Practice as a scientist/doctor who investigates weird things in a transparent attempt to 'do' the X-Files Bliss

Was Crime Traveller really that crap? Yes

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Wheat Loaf
Feb 13, 2012

by FactsAreUseless


Prenton posted:

Was Crime Traveller really that crap? Yes

I wonder how Anthony Horowitz would do as Doctor Who showrunner/head writer? I've never seen anything he's written for television, but I was mad keen on his books when I was younger.

DoctorWhat
Nov 18, 2011

Someone call the Chancellery Guard. Commander Maxil's out of uniform. AGAIN.

TinTower posted:

That's the one.

Speaking of tumblr, what happened to yours, DoctorWhat? I kinda liked it.

Whadda ya mean? It's still there! bright-coat-and-bravado.tumblr.com

Forktoss
Feb 13, 2012

I'm OK, you're so-so


I thought this was going to be that picture of you with Matt Smith and I prepared to be deathly jealous about it all over again, and then it was something even worse!

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Almost one year ago now, the BBC culminated their celebration of the 50th Year since Doctor Who first aired with the special episode The Day of the Doctor, a 75 minute extravaganza that was simulcast in 94 countries to what felt like near universal acclaim. The special was very much tied in to the idea of the show being 50 years old, and was utterly unabashed about celebrating that, going so far as to recreate the opening of the original episode including use of black and white and the original opening theme/credits. It was absolutely the right move and helped make the episode feel as special as it should have, but there was always a fear that this might age it somewhat or make it difficult to enjoy outside of the 50th Year context.

One year later, I still think Day of the Doctor is an exceptional episode of Doctor Who, up there with the very best the show has done and most definitely the best ever "multi-Doctor" story. It works both as a bridge between the classic and revival series, the RTD and Moffat eras of the revival, and as a capstone to the long-running theme of the Time War and the Doctor's "survivor's guilt", while setting a potential new direction for the show to follow in the future. It's also a tremendous amount of fun and has a beautiful resolution in which the Doctor discovers yet again that when forced to make an impossible choice he can and WILL find some crazy, nonsensical plan that allows him to forge an alternate path. It's a repudiation of the "mature" decision he feels he has to make to drat billions to save trillions - he'll be childish and stubborn and foolish and save EVERYBODY and just because it's impossible why should that stop him? Best of all, it's a human companion who gives him the inspiration to do that, who somehow both grounds him and reminds him of what an inspirational figure he can and should be.

The episode opens at Coal Hill School, where An Unearthly Child introduced us to the Doctor's first companions. Clara Oswald now works there as a teacher, having apparently finally moved on from her role as a quasi-nanny for her dead friend's family. When The Name of the Doctor ended, Clara was lost and splintered and bemoaned to the Doctor that she didn't know who she was, a nod perhaps to her status through most of season 7 as the perfect companion: her character and motivations entirely dependent on whatever the Doctor needed at that time. While it wouldn't be till season 8 that we would finally get an idea of just who Clara Oswald is as a person, in this story we see that since that last episode she and the Doctor have developed a closer friendship without secrets or suspicions between them. Joining him in the TARDIS, their reunion is interrupted by UNIT "collecting" the TARDIS, having apparently not thought to check beforehand if the Doctor was inside. This leads to some lovely physical comedy from Smith, channeling a little Harold Lloyd as he echoes his initial appearance way back in The Eleventh Hour by hanging out of the TARDIS. Somebody noted shortly after this episode that Smith somehow manages to move his body in a way you'd usually expect from a cartoon, and it is a pretty great description of an actor who has often been referred to as an old man in a young body, an alien, Frankenstein's Creature, or Moffat's own "a young body assembled from memory by a committee of old men."



Kate Stewart of UNIT is looking for the Doctor because of an incident in the "Under Gallery" of the National Gallery, a secret place hiding pieces of art considered in some way a threat to the security of the United Kingdom. Here is where the links are first made to the other two Doctors who will appear in this story - David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor and John Hurt as the mysterious "War Doctor", first seen in the last episode of season 7 as a hidden incarnation of the Doctor locked away in the deepest corner of his subconscious mind. It is the inclusion of this character that could have potentially derailed the special, thrusting a new version of the Doctor in and pretending like he'd already been there sounds like a recipe for disaster. Thankfully John Hurt isn't phoning it in at all and slips into the role like an old comfortable pair of slippers, and the writing/characterization is surprisingly strong given that this version of the Doctor literally didn't exist before 2013.

One issue with the Time War was that it required at some point one of the pre-existing Doctors to have "failed", to have reached a point where they did what was necessary and were personally responsible for the deaths of billions. The guy getting that particular short end of the stick was Paul McGann, as Eccleston's immediate predecessor it was assumed that he was the one who eventually made that call, who gave in after the immense pressure became too much for him and betrayed the ideal of what it meant to be "the Doctor" and not only fought in the war but used a weapon of MASS destruction to end it. The Name of the Doctor and the wonderfully unexpected Night of the Doctor put paid to that idea at last, as the 8th Doctor was shown to have held to his ideals till the end, dying because he refused to leave the side of a human who hated him even though he could have easily escaped. Instead John Hurt's unnumbered incarnation of the Doctor stepped in to do what none of the other personalities could tolerate... and this special tells us the heartwarming story of how even when committed to doing the unthinkable this was an incarnation that still thought like, wanted to be, and ultimately deserved to be named "the Doctor".

The 11th Doctor and Clara are shown a piece of Gallifreyan art that has somehow found its way to earth, an actual captured moment of time detailing the Fall of Arcadia, the second greatest city of Gallifrey. The Doctor flashes back to his time as the War Doctor, when he returned to his home planet on the final day of the Time War and stole the last of the forbidden weapons from the Omega Archive, a weapon so monstrously powerful that even with the fate of the universe at stake the Time Lord's didn't dare use it. It is "The Moment", first referenced in The End of Time, and what makes it so dangerous isn't its enormous destructive capabilities (it can destroy entire galaxies just by thinking about it) but the fact that it is sentient. The Moment is essentially the same as a TARDIS mind but capable of articulation with linear beings, and because it has a conscience it will put any who attempt to use it through an emotional and psychological wringer to force them to understand the ramifications of their actions. Played by Billie Piper (though more specifically as the Bad Wolf rather than Rose), the Moment demonstrates how ill-served she was by her time as Rose Tyler, especially the bizarre meta-Rose who she became in season 4. Piper's performance in this episode is excellent, and though she shares screentime with the other actors her only interactions are with John Hurt, removing any chance of once again wallowing in the awful Doctor/Rose "romance" of the RTD years. Questioning if the War Doctor has really considered the ramifications of using it to end the Time War, the Moment allows him to see his own future. Connected by, of all things, a Fez, the 11th Doctor finds himself in England in 1562 meeting the 10th Doctor in the middle of an encounter with Queen Elizabeth I, and shortly after they're joined by the War Doctor, which is when the already compelling story becomes something truly special.



Tennant and Smith play wonderfully off each other, bringing back that old classic Troughton/Pertwee bickering double-act. Things get even better when the War Doctor shows up and is horrified to discover how young he becomes, pondering if he is suffering a mid-life crisis after initially mistaking them as his successor's companions. Despite being entirely a Moffat creation for the late revival, John Hurt's Doctor somehow manages to come across as a classic series Doctor, confused and irritated at many of the idiosyncrasies we've come to expect of the revival-era Doctors. Kissing humans, waving screwdrivers around like water pistols, using nonsensical phrases like "Timey-Wimey" (the Tenth Doctor throws the 11th under the bus on that one!) - he grumpily proclaims that he doesn't know who they are, that he doesn't recognize himself in them at all. This is the necessary conflict, the initial humorous bickering giving way to accusations and recriminations as they discuss the end of the Time War while locked in a dungeon. The Moment gives them the nudge they need by reminding the War Doctor that their sonic screwdrivers are the same software in a different casing, a none-too-subtle reference to the Doctors themselves, and all three realize that they can bypass hundreds of years of calculations in a matter of seconds by taking advantage of their unique situation. Working out a calculation to essentially disintegrate the door holding them in, they congratulate each other on their cleverness before getting a wonderful ego-puncture when Clara bursts through the door which was never actually locked.

There are two stories running through this episode, with the moral message of one obviously meant to serve as a parallel to the greater overarching narrative of the War Doctor's decision on whether to use the Moment or not. An old classic series race of shapeshifters called the Zygons have lost their planet, yet another victim of the Time War (and thus their presence on Earth is essentially the Doctor's fault) and made it to Earth in 1562. Using stolen Time Lord technology (the same stasis cubes used to make the painting of the Fall of Arcadia) they are storing themselves in suspended animation within various pieces of artwork, and will emerge once Earth's technology has reached a suitably comfortable level of advancement for them to enjoy. After a series of humorous cases of mistaken identity by the 10th Doctor (lampooning his penchant for brooding speeches, showing off his cleverness, and getting "romantic") he finds himself accidentally married to Queen Elizabeth I, which is the reason for all the frequent jokes about the Virgin Queen that have appeared throughout the revival. For some bizarre reason I never understood there were people who legitimately thought until this episode actually aired that the series was flat out saying the Doctor had sex with the Queen and that it wouldn't turn out to have been a bizarre misunderstanding/misinterpretation of events in an as yet unseen adventure. That particular running joke finally gets put to rest here as, shock of shocks, it turns out that those (bad) jokes were down to a bizarre misunderstanding/misinterpretation of events in a now seen adventure. Promising to return as soon as his mission is complete (a lie that will lead to the arrival of an older, far angrier Queen in season 3's The Shakespeare Code), the Doctors and Clara prepare to return to the 21st Century where the Zygons have started to emerge, using the 10th Doctor's TARDIS which gets even more confused about tenses when it discovers three Doctors onboard.



In the 21st Century, the UNIT science crew have been captured and impersonated by Zygons but also escaped and made their own way into the "Black Archive" to confront the alien menace. The Black Archive is another new addition to the show that pretends like it has been around all along, but like the War Doctor it is one that makes sense and is inserted smoothly into the show without feeling like it has been forced in. Filled with dangerous technology and information on every contemporary human companion (or alien companion that spent time on contemporary Earth), it has been designed to prevent the TARDIS from entering out of fear of how the Doctor will react to what they are hoarding and the information they've collected on him. Unfortunately for them, now the Doctor can't get inside while Kate Stewart and her Zygon counterpart find themselves in a standoff over an armed nuclear warhead beneath the archive that will destroy London if it goes off. The parallels between Kate's decision and the War Doctor's are obvious and not exactly subtle, and she is making the same decision that we know the War Doctor will eventually make - to let many die to save many more. The Zygon wants to live, of course, but is hardly the good guy in this since it is planning to conquer the Earth, so it is a problem with no solution that won't involve death or destruction.

And to that the Doctors say bullshit, there is ALWAYS another way.



In what is essentially The Veil of Ignorance, the Doctors selectively wipe the memories of the Zygons and Humans present in the room so that neither knows which is which any longer. This causes both Kates to immediately halt the countdown because if THEY are the Zygon they don't want to die, and the Doctors declare that they're now going to work out a peace treaty between the races.... and they better make sure both sides get treated fairly because for all they know, THEY could be on the losing side if they don't. After spending multiple incarnations trying and failing to get humans to work out peaceful co-existence with other alien races (remember how badly things went in Hungry Earth/Cold Blood?), he's finally figured out how thanks to help from his other incarnations - he'll just temporarily remove all prejudice, sense of entitlement, or attempts to pull a fast one so they have no choice but to be entirely fair.

The best thing is that this solution is earned, making use of various things introduced throughout the episode, a quality paralleled by the overarching narrative of the War Doctor's pondering of his own situation. In a truly sweet moment, the awkward but endearing UNIT tech Osgood and her Zygon duplicate work out which of them is human and which Zygon.... and both silently and happily agree to shut their mouths and say nothing and allow the perfect peace treaty to be formed. It's a moment that tells us that both sides are ultimately deserving of their place on Earth, and given the nature of the Zygons' shapeshifting abilities, it is a peace treaty that can exist without impacting on the status quo of contemporary modern earth, allowing it to remain familiar to viewers as being possibly the same as our own world.

With the Zygon threat gone, the War Doctor is able to sit back and ponder what his own future brings. His initial fears and distaste for his successors is gone and he he now considers them with pride and a small measure of longing - these men are "the Doctor", they have earned that title in a way he feels he himself has not. Clara, proving her insight, is the first to figure out that he has not yet used the Moment, with both the 10th and 11th just assuming they'd met him AFTER he did it. Unfortunately for her, the War Doctor has taken the lesson from this adventure that he must do what he does in order to "light the fire" for his future selves, so that they will have the strength of character to help the universe left over after the end of the Time War, to be in place to solve this Zygon crisis now. He tells the still unseen by everybody else Moment that he is ready, and to Clara's surprise she looks away for a moment and he is gone.

Back in the barn that he carried the Moment to (as it accurately notes, he doesn't want the TARDIS to see him commit this obscene act), the Doctor prepares to do the moment we have all been told over the previous seven seasons that he (or rather, A Doctor) did. In season 8's Listen we'd learn this barn had a particular significance to the Doctor, but for now all we know is that it is a desolate place where he came to be alone as he performed an act he and the rest of the universe would consider abhorrent. The Moment isn't done teaching him lessons though, and though she provides him with the "big, red button" he asked for she makes him wait a moment to ask him a question. What follows is one of the most inspiring moments of the episode to me:

Moment: You know the sound the TARDIS makes? That wheezing, groaning. That sound brings hope wherever it goes.
War Doctor: Yes. Yes, I like to think it does.
Moment: To anyone who hears it, Doctor. Anyone, however lost..... even you.

And then the sound of the TARDIS is heard, and before his astonished eyes the 10th and 11th Doctors show up in a place they CAN'T be in, in a time that all the laws of time say it is impossible for them to be. They know it too, the 10th Doctor saying the Time Lock should have prevented them from arriving and the 11th Doctor noting that this means that something has let them through. Why are they here? Because Clara has told them that the War Doctor hasn't made his decision yet, so they're here to tell him something. What is that? That he doesn't have to do it? That he shouldn't do it? No, they're here to tell him that not only should he do it, but that they will help him. Before the Moment's disappointed eyes, all three place their hands on the button and agree to share in the moment, gifting the War Doctor with the only absolution he could ever hope for - telling him that they were wrong and that he more than anybody else deserves the name of the Doctor, because he was the Doctor on the day it was impossible to be so. And that is what the entire story has seemed to build to, an acknowledgement of the status quo set in place by RTD in series 1 as a way to bypass much of the baggage of the show's continuity. The Time War had to end this way, the Doctor had to make the decision to kill all those people (and all those children) to save so many more. It's the mature thing to do, the acknowledgement that sometimes you can't pull a magic solution out of your hat, and that this wasn't a failure on the War Doctor's part but a decision that they are all complicit in, ALL Doctors - including those that follow, because they were him so they did it too, and now they'll do it again. Because it is necessary. Because it is the only option. Because it HAS to happen.



And to that the Doctors say bullshit, there is ALWAYS another way.

I have always said the best companions are those who ground the Doctor, and by that I mean they are the ones who show him a better way. They remind him of his "humanity" for want of a better word, of his need to not lose the details by looking at the bigger picture, to remember all those little "unimportant" people who are ALL so very, very important. It is best shown here when, of the three Doctors present, the only one who actually has a companion (the Moment doesn't count) is the one who stops for a moment and allows an outside voice in. Clara is in tears, telling him that she never imagined HIM as doing this thing that he's only ever told her about as a thing of the past, an action of a past incarnation. Clara points to them all - a warrior and a hero so what does that make him? She wants him to be a Doctor, and reminds him of what he told her in The Name of the Doctor - that his name is a promise. What was that promise? To never be cruel or cowardly, to never give up and give in. And in that moment, the 11th Doctor realizes that yes there IS another way, a mad way that has no hope in hell of working but gently caress it he's going to do it anyway! Why? Because he's the Doctor and being the Doctor means that when you've got two terrible options and have to choose one, you find a third way and at least TRY to take it. He's been breaking rules all his lives, so why stop now?

Everything that follows is essentially a gigantic, unapologetic wallowing in the show's history. Coming up with a plan that, like with the Zygons, makes use of every element introduced throughout the body of the story so far, they return to Gallifrey in the midst of the final day of the Time War and report to the War Council of Gallifrey that they have a plan... a terrible plan that probably won't work, but they're going to do it anyway. Using the stasis cube technology and their individual TARDISes, they're going to shove the ENTIRE planet of Gallifrey into a single moment of time locked away in a pocket universe. The General of the War Council is horrified, they'll be lost outside of the universe with no way back, but the Doctor reminds him that they still have hope, a hope that one day that shall come back (yes, they shall come back), which is more than they have now. As the assembled Dalek fleet continues to pound the planet, the Doctor reveals an even bigger version of the earlier seen sonic screwdriver plan - the calculations to work out how to apply the stasis technology to the entire planet would take hundreds of years if not well over 1000 years.... but the Doctor has been working on this all his lives. Introduced by a pitch-perfect impersonation of Hartnell announcing his presence to the War Council, every single Doctor from the 50 years of the show's existence appears on the scene, much to the General's astonishment/horror - it's all 12 of them? "No sir," corrects his aide,"All thirteen!"



So in this the 50th year celebration of Doctor Who we get not only the appearance of the original 7 classic series Doctors and the TV movie's Paul McGann, but the first ever appearance of the 12th Doctor himself, Peter Capaldi. Every Doctor appears together in a scene that left me gasping the first time I saw it, an exhibition in excess that absolutely works thanks to the unique nature of this special episode. So Moffat ties everything up in a neat little knot as he so often attempts (successfully in season 5, not quite as well in season 6), getting his cake and eating it too as he leaves the impression of the Time War intact while "cheating" the result and removing Gallifrey from the universe instead of destroying it. The Daleks destroy themselves in the crossfire of their surrounding fleet suddenly no longer having a target, even showing a single Dalek being blown away, one that will presumably fall through time and space screaming and end up in the season one episode Dalek. We don't see the Emperor but know he'll end up in a similar position, but neither of them will be privy to the exact actions of what the Doctors did - all they'll know is that something happened and Gallifrey and the Time Lords were gone, the Time War over and them left to try to rebuild their once formidable armies, something they will ultimately fail to do.

Joining the 10th and 11th Doctors in the National Gallery in a world now presumably occupied by both humans and Zygons, the War Doctor ponders that he'll never know if they actually succeeded in saving Gallifrey or not... and also realizes that due to the screwed up nature of hanging around with his future incarnations, he will have no memory of the fact he ended up at least TRYING to save Gallifrey. As far as he will know, he took the Moment into that barn, did something, and Gallifrey and the Daleks were gone. The Doctors will live with that guilt until this moment when they are the 11th Doctor... but that's okay, he and they can live with that because they know they did the right thing, and he finally accepts the name of the Doctor, because he finally lived up to that promise he made to himself. The War Doctor says his goodbyes and leaves, not at all surprised (quite pleased even) when he realizes that he is regenerating, echoing the 1st Doctor's words when he declares that he is wearing a bit thin. Sadly, we cut away from his regeneration JUST before we can see Eccleston's face, a result of the actor eventually deciding not to take part in the special (though he did strongly consider it and it wasn't a snap,"gently caress off I don't want anything to do with it" reaction). Meanwhile, the 10th Doctor convinces the 11th to tell him where their fate is leading them, since he won't remember any of this either. Learning about their fated death at Trenzalore, he unknowingly echoes his future "I don't want to go!" from The End of Time but otherwise departs in high spirits, and though he won't remember "fixing" his actions at the end of the Time War, I'd like to think residual happiness is responsible for his irritably cheerful attitude towards the Ood at the start of The End of Time.



I've basically been all this entire review and I think with good reason, because it's a really goddamn great episode. That said, yeah of course there are issues and problems with it because no work is perfect. Again, I have to say that many issues I might have had more trouble with were smoothed over by the overall sense of joy that permeates the entire episode, the unabashed celebration of the show that is Doctor Who. The War Doctor IS a complete retcon of events and a shoving in of an entirely new Doctor into established events, the kind of thing that Joseph Lidster gets so wrong but that Moffat - in this case - got so right. The absence of Chistopher Eccleston is a drat shame, but anybody who says that the War Doctor is just the 9th Doctor with a find/replace run through the script is being ridiculous, as the characters couldn't be more different. It would have been nice to have the classic series actors dub in new lines for the "ALL THE DOCTORS!" scene rather than just sampling pre-existing episodes.

The Time War is also such a mind-bending concept that any even tiny slice of that action is inevitably going to be a disappointment because it can't match up to the crazy poo poo you come up with in your own head. I think they go some way towards blunting that by having the action take place so explicitly on the LAST DAY of the Time War, when all the crazy time-bending, reality-altering weapons and strategies and craziness has been reduced to a flat out infantry attack on the capital city of the losing side. It's effectively The Battle of Berlin - the might of one force has been reduced to nothing but frightened and underequipped conscripts getting blasted from all sides as their leadership squabbles and falls apart. Remember that Rassilon was in the process of trying and failing to teleport the entire planet into Earth's orbit while all this was going on, and that shortly after he and the Master were probably rolling around on the floor of the High Council room strangling each other only for the General to send in his troops in to arrest and detain them both. All the big weapons other than The Moment are gone, and if you think about it the entire episode is about one of those super-crazy weapons being used, screwing with time and space and turning literal events into a metaphor for the execution of events that are already in the past.

In one final glorious moment of celebration, Tom Baker appears to offer Matt Smith's Doctor a cheeky suggestion about the direction the show might take in the future. There are two ways you can take this scene - you can try and figure out how and where this future regeneration might fit into the show, which would be silly, or you can enjoy what was a fantastic moment where perhaps the most popular Doctor of the classic series (and the oldest living "Doctor) met the incumbent in the role so together they could celebrate 50 years of the show. Baker's "Curator" provides the final tidying up, explaining he is the one who acquired the painting ("under remarkable circumstances") that started this all off, and gives the final push into acknowledging the inspirational and heartwarming message of this episode. When it began, the painting was considered titled either "No More" or "Gallifrey Falls", neither of which were particularly positive messages. By the end of the episode, we learn that it is called,"Gallifrey Falls no more", and speaks to the clearly positive and joyful theme of the special. The Time War was an interesting and even necessary addition to the show to help provide a fresh start and a level of pathos to the character. After 7 seasons though I think the idea had been mined for as much drama and conflict as could possibly be had without committing the giant mistake of trying to show the war at its height. This special wraps things up about as well as could ever be hoped for and provides a new direction for the show - the 11th Doctor narrates, explaining that like everybody else he dreams, dreams about where he is going. For too long now he hasn't really been going anywhere, everything has been in response to his ending of the Time War, but now he can put that behind him. Now he has a new thing to do, to find his home planet and possibly restore it to the universe, to bring his old home "home" and give lives to those 2.47 billion children that it turns out he never killed. Rather than running/recovering/getting over the before now unseen events of the past, he is moving forward with hope towards a new goal... so long as Trenzalore doesn't get in the way and he runs out of time to do so.

In short, Day of the Doctor is a tremendous episode of the show, a feel-good celebration of everything that has come before and a promise of more to come. You only get one chance to make a 50th Year Celebration work, and Moffat and his cast and crew absolutely knocked it out of the park.

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at Jan 7, 2015 around 21:43

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


That was a much longer review than I was expecting it to be, sorry! But please talk about Day of the Doctor because it's about the right time of year to do so and holy poo poo was it good!

DoctorWhat
Nov 18, 2011

Someone call the Chancellery Guard. Commander Maxil's out of uniform. AGAIN.

The actual best part of Day of the Doctor is the unspoken punchline of "Let zygons be bygones", and I will maintain this opinion until my dying day

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


DoctorWhat posted:

The actual best part of Day of the Doctor is the unspoken punchline of "Let zygons be bygones", and I will maintain this opinion until my dying day

Even better than using waxwork Tom Baker in the line-up in the closing shot?

DoctorWhat
Nov 18, 2011

Someone call the Chancellery Guard. Commander Maxil's out of uniform. AGAIN.

Jerusalem posted:

Even better than using waxwork Tom Baker in the line-up in the closing shot?

That's a very close second. Really a goddamn fantastic joke.

"Let Zygons be bygones" is still WAY better, especially when left unsaid.

Sydney Bottocks
Oct 15, 2004

Eh.


I have often criticized Moffat's run on the show, for various reasons, and I still stand by those criticisms. Under his direction I have completely gone off the show and haven't watched an episode since that one with the dinosaurs or whatever. With one exception.

That exception is "Day of the Doctor" and I will happily state that I give Moffat full credit for making it a wonderful, joyous celebration of the show's history. Sure, it was nonsensical in parts, but it was the sort of fun nonsense a multi-Doctor episode should be. It pushed all my fanboy buttons and I'll happily take my hat off to Moffat for it.

(it also helps that he preceded it with "Night of the Doctor", which gave Paul McGann another go at portraying the Doctor on TV, which he did a wonderful job of. Also that Moffat had just wonderful things to say about both McGann and Big Finish in the interview that followed. I don't always like Moffat but in this case he was truly a class act)

DoctorWhat
Nov 18, 2011

Someone call the Chancellery Guard. Commander Maxil's out of uniform. AGAIN.

Sydney Bottocks posted:

I have often criticized Moffat's run on the show, for various reasons, and I still stand by those criticisms. Under his direction I have completely gone off the show and haven't watched an episode since that one with the dinosaurs or whatever. With one exception.

That exception is "Day of the Doctor" and I will happily state that I give Moffat full credit for making it a wonderful, joyous celebration of the show's history. Sure, it was nonsensical in parts, but it was the sort of fun nonsense a multi-Doctor episode should be. It pushed all my fanboy buttons and I'll happily take my hat off to Moffat for it.

(it also helps that he preceded it with "Night of the Doctor", which gave Paul McGann another go at portraying the Doctor on TV, which he did a wonderful job of. Also that Moffat had just wonderful things to say about both McGann and Big Finish in the interview that followed. I don't always like Moffat but in this case he was truly a class act)

Dude, Series 8, bar a couple of stumbles, has been a vast improvement and is well worth-watching. Moffat at his Series 5-style best.

Linear Zoetrope
Nov 28, 2011

A hero must cook

It took me a long time to warm up to DotD. I know I'll probably catch flak for this, but I was honestly hoping for something more like Stolen Earth/Journey's End. The episodes are kind of self indulgent, bringing a mishmash of the Doctor's buddies in, and polluting the story with so many you can't do anything interesting with them. Still, I really wanted some absolutely ridiculous thing where Wilf, Craig, Jack Harkness, most of the surviving old Doctors, and whoever else got together and did silly things probably involving Gallifrey.

What we got was much better, but it took me a while to forgive it for not being what I wanted it to be and see it as a good episode.

I finished my first binge watch of Who the day Name of the Doctor came out, so Day was the first episode I ever waited for, I don't know if that colored my expectations.

PriorMarcus
Oct 16, 2008

ASK ME ABOUT BEING ALLERGIC TO POSITIVITY


DoctorWhat posted:

Dude, Series 8, bar a couple of stumbles, has been a vast improvement and is well worth-watching. Moffat at his Series 5-style best.

I don't agree. Though you should watch Mummy and the episode after it whose title I keep forgetting.

Rannos22
Mar 30, 2011

Everything's the same as it always is.


PriorMarcus posted:

I don't agree. Though you should watch Mummy and the episode after it whose title I keep forgetting.

Flatline. Though I'm pretty sure there was another decent episode this last season that I feel like I'm forgetting.

Edit: If you were turned off by the season and a half of the River Song Show I think now might be a good time to return since she hasn't been present at all thus far.

Rannos22 fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2014 around 09:03

Sydney Bottocks
Oct 15, 2004

Eh.


DoctorWhat posted:

Dude, Series 8, bar a couple of stumbles, has been a vast improvement and is well worth-watching. Moffat at his Series 5-style best.

Quite honestly I think Series 5 was, on reflection, rather overrated and I'm not really likely to revisit the series as it stands currently under Moffat's direction. I'll just bide my time until he finally departs.

(he's never going to leave, is he )

Proposition Joe
Oct 8, 2010

He was a good man


I think that if you're going to look back at entire seasons of the show then Series 5 is one of the best ones not only because of the quality of the episodes but also because of its consistency. Almost every season has these weird highs and nadirs but Series 5 doesn't really have a nadir. Even though people complain about the Silurian two-parter, it is closer to the quality of the rest of the season than Love & Monsters or Let's Kill Hitler were with their respective seasons. It also helps that they didn't do anything silly that year like split the season in two parts.

Also it legitimately had a lot of good episodes.

Neddy Seagoon
Oct 12, 2012


We've got this thing licked!



Rannos22 posted:

Flatline. Though I'm pretty sure there was another decent episode this last season that I feel like I'm forgetting.

Edit: If you were turned off by the season and a half of the River Song Show I think now might be a good time to return since she hasn't been present at all thus far.

The season finale two-parter and Into the Dalek were pretty good. Forest of the Night was an utter piece of crap though.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


I loved Robot of Sherwood but it was a very silly episode (which is part of why I loved it).

Rannos22
Mar 30, 2011

Everything's the same as it always is.


Neddy Seagoon posted:

The season finale two-parter and Into the Dalek were pretty good. Forest of the Night was an utter piece of crap though.

Haha no it was definitely not those. None of those were the other good episode I was thinking of.

Jerusalem posted:

I loved Robot of Sherwood but it was a very silly episode (which is part of why I loved it).

Yeah that episode was pretty alright. Fun and mostly lightheated. It at least knew what it was trying to accomplish which is more than can be said for the meandering finale.

Rannos22 fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2014 around 10:15

ewe2
Jul 1, 2009

TRUMP TRUMP TRUMP

put clinton in prison imo


Lipstick Apathy

Jerusalem posted:

That was a much longer review than I was expecting it to be, sorry! But please talk about Day of the Doctor because it's about the right time of year to do so and holy poo poo was it good!

I watched it recently and the only bug in my ointment is that I would have preferred Donna over Rose as The Moment. Donna had the conscience, not Rose. I know there's several excuses, including Bad Wolf, none of them are good enough for me.

Fez's are cool though. ASAP PRONTO LOL

Cleretic
Feb 3, 2010

Fans always know better than the creators.


Jerusalem posted:

I loved Robot of Sherwood but it was a very silly episode (which is part of why I loved it).

Robot of Sherwood is a great episode to have, but it's never one I'd put forward to someone just getting into the show. I realized it when I was watching the Yogscast and one of them mentioned seeing it more or less in isolation, but it fits too perfectly into what people think Doctor Who is like to be a good early-introduction episode.

There's nothing wrong with what it is, one of the great strengths of Doctor Who is that it can do stuff like that, and then immediately follow it up with something like Listen. But if you're trying to introduce the show to someone, it's not a good episde until they're properly sold on it. It would be easy to dismiss the show as a whole based on Robot of Sherwood, because it fits squarely into what people picture Doctor Who to be like.

CobiWann
Oct 21, 2009

There are lost episodes of course. Stories that were commissioned but never made. Or made but misfiled, post broadcast. Sheer incompetence, of course.

I can sum up how I feel about The Day of the Doctor, even a year later, by the fact that this line from The Runaway Bride takes on a whole new meaning after the episode.

quote:

My home planet is far away and long since gone, but its name lives on. Gallifrey.

Davros1
Jul 19, 2007

You've got to admit, you are kind of implausible

Jerusalem posted:

Even better than using waxwork Tom Baker in the line-up in the closing shot?

DWM just released a Special called "The Year of the Doctor" which covers the making of "Night", "Day", and "Time". It has the un-Doctored (pun intended, sorry) version of that closing shot. It's Smith, Tennant, Hurt, and 9 extras dressed in the previous Doctors clothes. The heads were just shopped in later.

DoctorWhat
Nov 18, 2011

Someone call the Chancellery Guard. Commander Maxil's out of uniform. AGAIN.

It's a real goddamn shame Gridlock is so continuity-heavy, because if it weren't, it'd be the perfect introductory episode for the show as a whole.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


DoctorWhat posted:

It's a real goddamn shame Gridlock is so continuity-heavy, because if it weren't, it'd be the perfect introductory episode for the show as a whole.

Ouch, Gridlock is certainly not an episode I'd recommend - good ideas but they're not strung together into a particularly cohesive whole. I'd still say The Eleventh Hour is probably the best episode of the revival to act as an introductory episode.

ewe2 posted:

Fez's are cool though. ASAP PRONTO LOL

I love the Doctor's insistence (and Clara's bemused disbelief) that he could absolutely have a job if he wanted ("have it on my desk... do I have a desk? Get me a desk!"), which even gets touched on at the end when he happily declares that he could be a curator if he wanted.

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2014 around 17:40

NieR Occomata
Jan 18, 2009


Irony Be My Shield
Jul 29, 2012

PRETTY SURE THAT ONE'S SARCASM, BOSS


Jerusalem posted:

Ouch, Gridlock is certainly not an episode I'd recommend - good ideas but they're not strung together into a particularly cohesive whole. I'd still say The Eleventh Hour is probably the best episode of the revival to act as an introductory episode.
I like the idea of just picking up at the start of Moffat's run. I was wondering though - the library two-parter from series 4 is sortof important as an introduction to River Song and is also good, does it make sense to try and work it in somewhere?

Rannos22
Mar 30, 2011

Everything's the same as it always is.


Irony Be My Shield posted:

I like the idea of just picking up at the start of Moffat's run. I was wondering though - the library two-parter from series 4 is sortof important as an introduction to River Song and is also good, does it make sense to try and work it in somewhere?

I recently rewatched the library two parter and it wasnt nearly as good as I remembered it being. Eleventh Hour is probably a lot better introduction despite the Disney TV movie vibe it gives off.

Trin Tragula
Apr 22, 2005



Jerusalem posted:



Every time I see this, I'm just in utter awe of what an amazing physical actor he is. He's an actual cartoon character. It's the only explanation. How do you even do that without dislocating your hips?

egon_beeblebrox
Feb 29, 2008

WILL AMOUNT TO NOTHING IN LIFE.



So I'm about halfway through Zagreus and Uhhhhhhhhh....

It's a Hell of a Thing.

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Jsor posted:

Still, I really wanted some absolutely ridiculous thing where Wilf, Craig, Jack Harkness, most of the surviving old Doctors, and whoever else got together and did silly things probably involving Gallifrey.

It is fun to imagine what an RTD 50th would have been like, if only for the trainwreck factor. I do think he probably would have just cast the old actors in despite the age difference and just thrown in some handwaving technobabble to get the explanation out of the way so he could play with his toys. It probably wouldn't have made any sense at all and been enormously frustrating in parts, but it would have been a hell of a lot of fun.

I'm very, very glad we got what we got instead though.

egon_beeblebrox posted:

So I'm about halfway through Zagreus and Uhhhhhhhhh....

It's a Hell of a Thing.

It tries so hard, I'll give it that. But it's soooo long and bloated and the big climactic resolution just kind of stumbles along in a thoroughly unexciting way.

Irony Be My Shield posted:

I like the idea of just picking up at the start of Moffat's run. I was wondering though - the library two-parter from series 4 is sortof important as an introduction to River Song and is also good, does it make sense to try and work it in somewhere?

If I was recommending somebody to start at The Eleventh Hour, I'd say watch the whole of season 5 and then if they felt like it jump back and check out the Library 2-parter. If anything it might encourage people to check out more Tennant, which in turn might encourage them to check out more Eccleston.

I used to recommend Rose as a great starting point, and it still is as far as the RTD era goes. But it already feels like a bygone era of television despite only being 9 years old. Compared to the production values on the current show it's kind of incredible how quickly it has aged.

Jerusalem fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2014 around 20:41

CobiWann
Oct 21, 2009

There are lost episodes of course. Stories that were commissioned but never made. Or made but misfiled, post broadcast. Sheer incompetence, of course.

Jerusalem posted:

It tries so hard, I'll give it that. But it's soooo long and bloated and the big climactic resolution just kind of stumbles along in a thoroughly unexciting way.

They really tried so hard, they wouldn't even let death stop Jon Pertwee from making an appearance.

Jerusalem posted:

If I was recommending somebody to start at The Eleventh Hour, I'd say watch the whole of season 5 and then if they felt like it jump back and check out the Library 2-parter. If anything it might encourage people to check out more Tennant, which in turn might encourage them to check out more Eccleston.

I'd actually suggest the Sontaran two-parter over Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead. Set on Earth, more action packed, and a little less weird than the Donna-in-the-computer scenes. Plus introducing someone to River Song without a little more Ten experience seems off somehow.

CobiWann fucked around with this message at Nov 22, 2014 around 21:26

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


The Sontaran 2-parter suffers from Martha being jammed into the story for no reason (and doing nothing) - as an introduction it throws too much at the viewer whereas Rose or The Eleventh Hour all set the scene pretty well for a new viewer.

Deep Breath is like The Christmas Invasion in that it starts with the Doctor already a known quantity for the other characters. The companion acts as audience stand-ins for existing viewers coming to terms with the Doctor's new incarnation, but they're completely up to the play with who and what the Doctor is already. Season one and season 5 by comparison allow the companion to be a stand-in for new viewers learning all about who the Doctor is and what he is all about.

Noxville
Dec 7, 2003



Jerusalem posted:

The Sontaran 2-parter suffers from Martha being jammed into the story for no reason (and doing nothing) - as an introduction it throws too much at the viewer

Also it's a bit rubbish

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


Noxville posted:

Also it's a bit rubbish

I love the Sontaran 2-parter

CobiWann
Oct 21, 2009

There are lost episodes of course. Stories that were commissioned but never made. Or made but misfiled, post broadcast. Sheer incompetence, of course.

Noxville posted:

Also it's a bit rubbish

I love the Sontaran 2-parter

PriorMarcus
Oct 16, 2008

ASK ME ABOUT BEING ALLERGIC TO POSITIVITY


Noxville posted:

Also it's a bit rubbish

I love the Sontaran 2-parter

Jerusalem
May 20, 2004

Would you be my new best friends?


CobiWann posted:

I love the Sontaran 2-parter

PriorMarcus posted:

I love the Sontaran 2-parter

Wheat Loaf
Feb 13, 2012

by FactsAreUseless


The Sontaran two-parter is good on its own merits, but I often feel it seems a little weaker than it really is for being sandwiched between "The Ark on Space" and "Genesis of the Daleks".

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MrL_JaKiri
Sep 23, 2003

Ask me about my calm and reasonable opinions on cycling!

I am in no way a zealot about cycling!

Cycling helmets are ABSOLUTE HARAM!


Noxville posted:

Also it's a bit rubbish

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