DRW50

Doctor Who

478 posts in this topic

We've had a dozen threads but never one collective thread. And what good timing, starting this AFTER the season just went on hiatus. I was still so depressed about the last episode I decided to start this.

The obsession of my youth, a show I couldn't actually believe came back. I've always had slightly mixed emotions on the return but when it's good it gets right to your heart more than almost anything else in entertainment can. And when the right companion comes along, I become very attached (see my breaking my 3 and a half year avatar allergy).

I wish Amy and Rory had been able to just leave of their own volition, but barring that, the last scenes were heartbreaking and harrowingly acted by everyone involved, especially underrated Matt Smith, probably the actor who has best captured the Doctor's spirit since the 70s.

I loved Jenna Louise Coleman on Emmerdale and her first episode showed promise. I do wonder how they will bring that character back. If it's the same characters, before her death, then the Doctor will have to spend all his time not telling her or River he saw them die. Awkward.

And then Doctor Who fandom always has first rate vids. For example:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3bJpfFLtbdY&list=FLNEnwk1pvnNWCT3Fn9r49Eg&feature=mh_lolz

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Loved the video. You're right, it is first rate.

.

I will miss Amy and Rory. I loved them as individual characters, as well as a couple. I would have preferred they leave on their own as well, but I'll take what they gave.

I avoided spoilers this portion of the season and I'm so glad I did.

And I agree about MS. IMO, he surpasses DT as the Doctor. Even though MS is in his 20s, he has the aura of an old soul, which makes it easier for me to believe that his Doctor is 900(+?) yrs old. I never felt that way about David T.

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Smith is a real link to the past - he's not a big fan, as Tennant was, but he has a lot of respect for the show's history. I appreciate when he talks about Patrick Troughton, because he's obviously not just paying lip service. He adds a lot of Troughton and William Hartnell.

For a while I didn't like Amy but once they toned down the predictable bickering and strong female companion saves the day stories, I began to like her. Moving away from the typical Doctor/young female companion relationship and adding Rory and bringing in more focus on her relationship with Rory was the best idea, focusing more on how the Doctor has affected both Amy and Rory. Episodes like The Girl Who Waited were a fantastic showcase for her.

There haven't been any Doctor/companion relationships so deep in a long time, and sometimes I wonder if they should even have the Doctor with companions since he seems to increasingly destroy their lives. Hopefully this might be addressed when they bring Jenna Louise Coleman back.

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I liked Amy from the start. People got on her because she was 'too sexy' or too bitchy or whatever, but I think the character is one of the most fully realized companions ever. She has a profound arc. She goes from confused, insecure, defensive young woman to wife to working woman to mother. She has a life and times outside the Doctor, while with the Doctor. No other companion has truly had that. I loved Rose in her day, but it grated on me how willing she was to throw everything away for him. Part of it was that she was very young, but it didn't help that the creative team seemed to valorize that POV at the time. And it made Series 2 unbearable for me.

Rory, too, was a huge step. A similar character, Mickey Smith, was basically mocked and dismissed early on under Nine and Ten as the 'tin dog' and left there, though they did eventually rehab the character - but he never got Rose, as I'd once predicted would be his arc. When I first watched Series 1 I thought Rose would eventually grow out of her life with the Doctor and come to find a mature relationship with Mickey. Instead, he left her and she got a clone. That was a wretched ending for an incredibly influential and important companion and co-star who, despite my issues with Rose's later character development, had a profound and immensely positive effect on making the revival work. Without Billie Piper it would not have gone off so well.

But with Arthur Darvill and Rory, they promoted and championed him at every turn. Every time you thought Amy was preaching the gospel of the Doctor, it turned out she was preaching the gospel of Rory. They made him a full, amazing character and hero in his own right. I loved so much of the RTD era, but one key failing was that he never would have thought to do that.

I will miss them both terribly, and I think they were incredibly influential and groundbreaking companions both as the first team since the '80s, and as a married couple - and two people that lived their own fully fleshed-out lives alongside the Doctor, as opposed to Rose or Donna, who had their fine backstories and supporting cast but lived for their times with the Doctor.

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I think at first she didn't fit the patterns of the most popular companions she was going to be compared to, like Rose. Strong, brave, spunky, in love with the Doctor. Of course she wasn't actually in love with him, that was just the early impression. Then you started to get a lot of complaints, some I'd agree with, some not, that the story with the Ponds was too soap opera, or not enough about the Doctor, or too complicated. I think it did get too complicated last season, but never felt like it was "soap opera", because they didn't focus as much on the big emotions as they would have with someone like Rose.

I understand the idea that the show must be about the Doctor and a young cutie who idolizes him, but I think they'd gone as far as they could (which is why they brought Donna in). I guess we might be going back to that again, and it might work, but if so it's in large part because of the breathing room from Donna, then Amy/Rory.

Over time I started to appreciate more of the darkness and sadness in Amy's character, which Karen Gillan played expertly. There were times when Amy was very underwritten but there are other times which were small scenes that stayed with me for years, like the scene after Rory was killed, where she was looking at a future version of herself, from a great distance, and waving, and wasn't sure why she felt sad (earlier, Rory had been there beside her in the future, then been killed and wiped out of history). Another was the nightmare episode where, after Rory was killed, Amy went back to reality by driving her car straight into a wall, knowing she had nothing to live for without Rory.

I loved Donna (she's probably the only other companion from the Who revival I loved, aside from Rory, although I liked most of the others) but that's always a little tainted because of her exit, and the idea that she was nothing without the Doctor. Even if I wish we'd seen a little more of Rory at the end, mainly a Rory/Doctor scene, I'm glad we knew that Rory and Amy did get to be together, and that ultimately Amy made the choice.

Mickey was treated horribly in his first season, although they gave him a decent ending (if you can ignore the whole idea of him suddenly becoming a freedom fighter and suddenly marrying Martha, who was now also a freedom fighter). If you didn't love Rose and the Doctor as OTP then you had to struggle a little in the first season. The show started to open up a little more in the later episodes of the first season, and then the second. I started liking Rose as everyone else seemed to start hating her. Ultimately I liked her family the most, which might be the part of RTD's era I miss most (he did bring in Rory's father but then we never saw him learn about Amy/Rory).

What I'll always appreciate with the writing of the last few years is we weren't asked to look down on Rory because he wasn't the Doctor. He was his own person, and we were allowed to respect him in his own right, and to know that in many ways he was just as strong as the Doctor, and a very vital part of the TARDIS, not just the tagalong. The main focus was probably always on Amy and the Doctor, but in the end, Rory was what mattered most to her.

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I don't think Moffat cares much for women who idolize the Doctor. Amy grew out of it, and River never truly has. He understands, I think, that the Doctor stands apart in a way - though I did love the Doctor and Rose's romance when it worked in the first series, and I love the Doctor and River. And Jenna-Louise Coleman's companion, whoever she truly turns out to be, has been heavily promoted as someone who can out-think and out-talk the Doctor.

And while I loved Donna, I will say that the inability of RTD to truly conceive of a character who didn't either idolize or love the Doctor was what screwed up Martha. I adored Freema Agyeman and Martha, and I thought she had the kind of game staying power and spunk that made Elisabeth Sladen stick in people's minds. If they hadn't forced a crush angle and written her out for the more high-profile Catherine Tate - who could only ever do a year - I think Martha could've done a long, long run as a fully functional companion like the old days. As it is, Amy and Rory ended up being the ones to do that instead.

Edited by Vee

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I wonder if we'll ever see River again - I'm not sure if we will get one last time before she leaves for good, or if she'll keep popping in. She's so close to the time of her death now. Alex Kingston has such a tough job with the role, especially once they revealed her background and she could never quite have a real relationship with Rory and Amy after this. I think the best of River were her first interactions with Amy and Rory before they learned she was their daughter, when she was more vulnerable with them. And her first scenes with Matt Smith, which had fantastic chemistry. I especially loved some of her scenes with Rory where she was talking to him like his teenage daughter describing her first date, and he had no idea why.

And of course this.

I don't know if you saw this but it's a lot of fun.

So is there anyone you'd bring back? Would you like to see Jack again?

Edited by CarlD2

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That is cute.

We really don't know how close we are to the end with River. She's pardoned, but she's part-Gallifreyan, and her age and appearance are admittedly fluid; she confirmed in Let's Kill Hitler that she could manipulate the aging process. She could have years left. I'm fairly positive we'll be seeing her at least throughout the rest of Series 7 at key points, like perhaps the anniversary. The ongoing Silence/question story is still lurking, waiting. I actually liked a lot of her scenes later on with Amy and Rory, particularly the garden scene in last year's finale. You could see how their family relationship worked and that it worked for them. And I liked the Mels micro-saga, showing that they actually had 'raised' her in a way. That was weird and wonderfully Who.

I would love to see Jack again. I know he was supposed to appear in A Good Man Goes to War but Barrowman wasn't available. I'm sure he'll turn up soon. I have a selfish wish to see, say, Janet Fielding as Tegan - I think that would be hilarious with Matt Smith - but I doubt she's high on the list, though the Fifth Doctor is supposedly Moffat's favorite. (And RTD had planned an Ace episode for The Sarah Jane Adventures before Sladen passed, which sounded fantastic. Personally I wish they'd done a similar new kids' spinoff with Katy Manning as Jo...)

I'm sure James Corden will return soon as Craig Owens. He's great. I also wouldn't mind seeing William Russell, but I doubt he's in any condition to do so. Most of all I want to see Paul McGann recognized next year.

Edited by Vee

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Russell still does audio work for Doctor Who but I don't know if he does other acting.

I never knew they were going to bring Ace back. I guess that's why they mentioned her in one of the episodes. I wish they'd brought Liz Shaw back, before Caroline John passed away. I wouldn't mind seeing Leela again either. Tegan again would be wonderful, as she would be on the wavelength of this Doctor and they'd argue back and forth.

I felt sorry for Freema because she had to come right after Rose, and a lot of her stories seemed written on the fly (especially her family). She was someone who would have shone with another companion to spend time with. I think her best work was the Human Nature two-parter, which was one of my favorite stories. I wish that her trip to Torchwood had been a longer stay, although I know Freema left to do L&O UK.

Some fans felt like the Rory/Amy marital breakup was a big distraction in the last Dalek episode. I thought it flowed well with the story, overall. The only thing I would have changed was I wouldn't have made her sterile and I would have had this happen soon after they found out about River. Then they could have reconciled in the Girl Who Waited episode.

I think Jack would have been a good fit with this group, especially River, but I guess the show has moved on. I wonder if the constant death and misery of Torchwood also kept them from bringing him back.

I also wish they could recast The Master and start over again with him. Simm's version never worked for me. I wish Derek Jacobi had stayed on longer.

Here's Barrowman interviewing them a few months ago.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEjnUAsZJ-Q

Edited by CarlD2

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There is a long, lovely story with Sophie Aldred in one of the recent DW Magazine issues where she reads aloud an email from RTD outlining in detail her scripted return on SJA, with Ace driving up in a stretch limo, a hip, beautiful businesswoman, as Sarah Jane mentions at the end of Death of the Doctor. Later in the story, "Dorothy" would prove she is still good ol' Ace despite her wealth and power, helping Sarah Jane and the kids bash the monsters with a bat. I wish they'd gotten to do it.

Both Freema and Noel Clarke were intended to become regulars on Torchwood after DW Series 4, which is why they leave with Jack at the end of Journey's End. It didn't pan out, as Freema got other shows and Noel is busy with his films and such, and so the Lois Habiba character was added to Children of Earth in Martha's place.

Jack is a Moffat creation, and I'm sure he'll be back sooner or later. I do think Torchwood is a shambles again. COE was masterful IMO, perhaps the best thing produced in the entire franchise since 2005, but the first two series were dross despite a great cast, and Miracle Day was mostly awful.

I personally would love to see Tommy Knight as Luke. But that would require addressing Sarah Jane, which I'm not sure I can bear. I do not want them to write Lis Sladen's death in - I'd rather they say she is still off in space on adventures - but I guess they must soon.

Edited by Vee

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You know how I feel about CoE so I won't have to bring that up closedeyes.jpg Lois felt like a very undeveloped character, so I guess that is why. I wouldn't mind seeing Rhys and Gwen again, or Andy. Perhaps they are best off where they are, though.

I go in and out with DWM so I never saw that interview. I'll look for it. I wasn't a huge fan of Ace but Sophie Aldred always seemed so down to earth and likeable and cool in all her interviews. Seeing her again would have been a jolt, especially since I will forever have the mental image of New Adventures Ace, wearing that skintight black leather suit, broken inside because of what "time's champion" put her through. That's the type of thing which I wouldn't have minded seeing a little more of on the show - I wanted Rory and Amy to have more of a reaction to what the Doctor had done to their lives, and to the Doctor. The closest was in Girl Who Waited when Rory said, "You're turning me into you," which was such an incredible line and scene.

A part of me wanted them to address Sarah Jane's exit, and pay tribute to Lis Sladen. I understand why they didn't, but I wanted to say goodbye. I liked Clyde, and Luke, and Maria, and her incredibly perfect father. Rani and her family were OK but never quite the same. I read a fic once about Maria's father and Martha hooking up and somewhere along the way decided I'd just pretend that was Martha's exit. I really wish they hadn't had to marry Mickey and Martha off at the end. I don't know why but it annoyed me.

So do you ever read any of the books? The Big Finish stuff is too expensive for me. I bought a few books. I think the last one was the one about Donna's grandfather, and his close friend, who had Alzheimer's.

I was going to post the Donna fanvid set to Breakaway but I guess it was removed years ago. Thanks for nothing Youtube.

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I haven't read much of the books, but I'm familiar with them. I know most of the current writers worked on the New Adventures or the rest of the novel range, so I like to think most of that happened - Ace just came back home later. I do think time with the Doctor also turned both Rose and Martha fairly paramilitary - Rose is running Torchwood, and Martha did her time with UNIT and then became some sort of roving mercenary.

I'm sure Sarah Jane will be addressed soon. They dealt with the Brigadier and they'll get to her. I just am not entirely looking forward to it, simply due to the fact that Lis Sladen's death still makes me so incredibly sad.

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I think they may just not mention Sarah Jane from now on. I'm not sure which I'd prefer. It's been an awful few years. Her death was so unexpected, and it was even tougher because I'd almost begun taking for granted that she'd be around a long time, that Sarah Jane could always return, after many years where I thought the most we'd get to see of her again would be those 90s video stories, or audio adventures. I love that as soon as they knew the show was a success, one of the first things RTD did was bring Sarah Jane back in. It was so natural you almost don't realize the effort this must have taken.

Caroline John and Mary Tamm were awful too. I don't think Mary ever got the material she deserved on Doctor Who, but what a stunning woman and capable actress, and so charismatic, such a good match for Tom Baker. Caroline's bothered me even more because Inferno is one of my favorite Doctor Who stories ever, and she is the heart of that story.

Somewhere on this or the next page I started a "depressing TV stories" thread, mostly consisting of Doctor Who or - what else - Survivors. If there was anything you wanted to add, I'd love reading it.

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Oh, I'd taken Elisabeth Sladen for granted too. I think everyone did at that point. Who else could possibly have staged such a comeback in pop culture, capturing yet another generation of fans and children and actually getting her own spinoff as a woman in her sixties? We thought she'd outlast us all. With Lis and Sarah Jane I think it's different than acknowledging another companion's death. It also makes me worry for Tom Baker.

I loved Caroline John - particularly on her Jon Pertwee-era DVD appearances and commentaries, which she was sharp as a tack - and Mary Tamm. Mary Tamm was a huge shock. I actually thought she had a lot of fun in her year on the show, though obviously not enough for her to stick around. I remember her in one of those crazy international thrillers in the '70s - The Odessa File with Jon Voight.

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