Posts Tagged ‘ Dalek ’

“Time of the Doctor” – The Second Trailer

A second trailer for “Time of the Doctor” has been released by the BBC. It’s similar (if not identical to the BBC America one). Not sure about the dodgy voiceover bloke though: might as well have got Peter Dickson in to do it. Completely detracts from what would otherwise have been a nice tease. However, it does seem to be fulfilling the promise that a lot of the loose ends from the Matt Smith era will be tied up, even to the extent of going back to “The God Complex“, to find out what was behind the door to “Room 11”.

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50th Anniversary Retrospective: “The Day of the Doctor”

Doctor “I could retire and be the curator of this place.”
Curator “You know, I really think you might.”
Doctor “I never forget a face.”
Curator “I know you don’t. And in years to come you might find yourself…revisiting a few. But just the old favourites, eh?”

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Whenever I watch Doctor Who, it has almost entirely been from the sofa of whichever house I happened to be living in at the time, although I do have memories of my childhood viewing technique of lying down on the floor, elbows under my head, with chin perched on my hands. Most of the time, viewing was a solitary experience. My parents, to this day, don’t really get it, and my brother was never a fan. I married in 2002 (during the wilderness years), over a year before the show’s triumphant return was even announced and nearly three years before “Rose” was broadcast. My wife had no idea what she was getting into, but she has enough taste in good television to sit and enjoy the new show with me. Having said that, I’m still not sure I could convince her to sit down and watch “Image of the Fendahl” or “The Romans” or somesuch. Given all this, it was beyond my comprehension to think that I would be watching the 50th anniversary special by leaving the “Official 50th Celebration” at the Excel with a bunch of other fans, many of whom were in Doctor Who costume, getting a cable car across the River Thames to the O2 arena, where we would watch the episode with 775 other fans on a screen 22-metres wide in glorious 3D. Not only that, there were more than 1,500 cinemas worldwide showing the same thing at the same time as it was simulcast in 94 countries and dubbed or subtitled into 15 other languages, watched by nigh-on 13 million people in the UK and who knows how many elsewhere. Not bad for kid’s show. But what to make of it all? The brief was not exactly a simple one: write an episode of the greatest television show that the world has ever seen that celebrates its dazzling, fifty-year heritage; that impresses dedicated fans of all ages as the centrepiece of the anniversary celebrations; that appeals to a large slice of an audience who have a take it or leave attitude to the show (the fools!); and paves the way to securing another half-century of Whovian goodness. It would not have been many people’s first response to this challenge, which had indeed been laid at the feet of Steven Moffat, to say, “Right. Let’s bring back the Zygons”. Continue reading

“Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS” – Review: Redux

Doctor “I met you at the Dalek Asylum. There was a girl in a ship wreck and she died saving my life. And she was you!”

Clara “She really wasn’t.” 

Doctor “Victorian London. There was a governess who was really a barmaid and we fought the Great Intelligence together. She died and it was my fault. And she was you!”

Clara “You’re scaring me.”

Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS

There was a sinking feeling that I had, when I heard that there would be an episode called “Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS” because it sounded for all the world like one of the those episodes from Star Trek: The Next Generation, just as it was about to jump the shark. You can imagine Journey to the Centre of the Enterprise taking place (as I type these words, and without looking at Google, I’m actually quite sure that this a premise that was in fact used), but it all just seemed so… unnecessary. Even in the pre-title sequence we had contrivance layered upon contrivance as the impregnable, impossible time machine had all its defences taken down for the first time in 1200 years of travel, just as a salvage team needed the defences taken down. Continue reading

“Asylum of the Daleks” – Review: Redux

Oswin “Run, you clever boy. And remember.”

Asylum of the Daleks

252 days passed between the previous episode of Doctor Who, “The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe” and first instalment of Series Seven. Of course, that is assuming that you are discounting the Blue Peter special “Good As Gold”, the quirky online/red button curtain raiser “Pond Life”, and the episode prequel. Whether or not you do discount these offerings, they probably didn’t satiate the desire to sit down in front of the now familiar 45-minute slice of Moffatian goodness. Before launching in to my review of “Asylum of the Daleks” it is probably worth giving “Pond Life” a quick mention. The collection of daily, mini episodes only ran to about five-and-a-half minutes in total and, right up until the final moments, it seemed set to be little more than a comic diversion. However, the sit-com feel turned slightly sombre as it became clear that the happily ever life of the Ponds was going through problems of its own. It might have just made us ready for the fact that AotD wasn’t going to be a laugh a minute affair. “We need you, Raggedy Man” said Amy, and so did we, the viewers. Continue reading

“The Big Bang” – Review: Redux

Professor River Song “Right, I have questions. But number one is this: what in the name of sanity have you got on your head?”
The Doctor “It’s a fez, I wear a fez now. Fezes are cool.”

The Big Bang

So, here we are at the end of The Moff’s first series in charge and we’re waiting to see just how the Doctor is going to get out of the Pandorica in which he was trapped by the alliance. The answer it turns out was funny, exciting, thrilling and, yet, a little bit unsatisfactory. This is where it starts to feel like the story, while brilliantly written, might be seen as being a bit too clever for its own good. The first shock is that it is that two-thousand years later, as the Pandorica rests in the National Museum, that it is not the Doctor but Amy who appears in the Pandorica after it’s been opened by little Amelia. We get a non-linear story to try and get our collective heads around as the Doctor from the future jumps back in time to instruct Rory how to open the “box” to free his younger self and replace him with Amy, who can later be restored. To dismiss the paradox (that the Doctor must’ve escaped from the Pandorica *before* being able to go back and instruct Rory how to fashion his escape) in such an off-hand way effectively gives rise to the notion that he could always do things like that to get out of perilous situations. As a one-off it is justifiable, but as a repeatable process it might become tiresome quite quickly. Continue reading

“The Pandorica Opens” – Review: Redux

Rory “I died and turned in to a Roman. It’s very distracting”

The Pandorica Opens

The season finale of Series Five begins with the longest pre-title sequence yet seen; it takes so long for the titles to arrive that you feel like you’re half way through the episode already. This, of course, may also be due to the fact that so much is packed into that sequence. Following on from “Time of Angels” and setting the scene for future stories when the two time travellers (the Doctor and River) arrange to meet, there are a series of wonderful little, for want of a better word, minisodes. The central conceit being the question of how to two people out of sync with one another arrange to meet up? The variety of ways of answering that question that are sprinkled liberally throughout Moffat-era Who, are always fun. Here we get a painting made by van Gogh in his fugue state, being found by Bracewell and Churchill, who, on the advice of River leaves it in the Queen’s estate all the way through to the reign of Liz Ten, where (after a small detour to obtain Captan Jack Harkness’s vortex manipulator via Dorium Maldovar), it is stolen by River herself, who carves a message along with necessary coordinates on the oldest cliff-face in the universe where it waits for the Doctor to come and translate it, before the final meeting in Roman Britain. Continue reading

“Victory of the Daleks” – Review: Redux

Ironside Dalek “Would you care for some tea?”

Victory of the Daleks

Our heroes are summoned to blitz-torn London by none other than Winston Churchill who, concerned about his new found “Ironsides” that were helping the war effort, decided to call upon his old friend, the Doctor to give a little support. I loved the way that Churchill and the Doctor had the bond formed already off-screen and the way that the PM had the ability to call the TARDIS directly. It was a clever little device that allowed the rather wonderful Ian McNiece and Matt Smith to side-step a whole bunch of exposition and get straight down to buiness. However, after the phone call and in another example of the Doctor not quite getting his timing right, he arrives a whole month later, by which time Churchill has put aside all concerns about these Ironsides and happily demonstrates to the Doctor and Amy an anihilation of an attacking Luftwaffa squadron by zapping them out of the sky. His “allies” of course are the Daleks, clad in khaki, eblazoned with a Union flag and subserviently helping out with tea and crumpets for the hard-working folk in the bunker. Something is very wrong. Continue reading