We’ve always been close right? You sometimes read blog posts I write. Occasionally you laugh at a line. From time to time, you even share them on Facebook because your soul is full to the brim with kindness today. That said, I think we need to step it up a bit with some serious sharing and caring. I’ll start. I’ve had a rough couple of weeks. Five rough weeks to be exact. I want to believe that it is going to get better but I know deep in my gut that it won’t. I need to tell someone why.
Doctor Who has gotten so bad.
At first I thought, like everyone in denial, that they are just having an off episode. It’ll get better. Oh, what a naïve fool I am! The viewing figures have even been going down by millions – that’s loads! Yes, I care about this topic so much I even did what journalists might call ‘research’ but I call ‘googling’. The first episode (The Bells of Saint John) got viewing figures of 6.18 million and Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS had 4.9 million (more info here). Soon it will just be me and a handful of British geeks, listlessly playing with their toy sonic screwdrivers, half watching and half sobbing. Then crywanking during the end credits. I describe dystopias better than Orwell.
Anyway. Here are the main thoughts that have been niggling away at my subconscious for some time now. They refuse to leave my brain until they are typed up, read and set up a brand new home in your brain. Oh and if you don’t watch Doctor Who, this probably won’t make a whole lotta sense – I’ll continue to write about periods and chick stuff next week. Enjoy.
1. I keep figuring out the ending half way through the episode.
Indeed, I’m intellectually brilliant as well as beautiful but that’s not important right now. I’m not figuring them out because of my awesome brain power; they are just fuckin’ obvious. The leaf of her dead mum? Bitch please. That dead-mum-leaf might as well have had a big neon sign next to it saying ‘I AM THE RESOLUTION TO THIS CRISIS’. PFFT.
Also – a dead mum AND a child singing? Both of those things have to be done well not to be saccharine as hell but TOGETHER DONE BADLY?
2. There doesn’t seem to be any plot.
Common sense tells me that there must be quite a few people who work on making a TV show. Accordingly, the odds are that someone would have noticed. Needn’t be a writer. Has someone’s PA not happened to be listening to a read through and remarked: ‘This is weird. I don’t feel emotionally invested in these characters at all,’ before Steven Moffat promptly slaps her around the face and beats her whilst shouting ‘SAY I’M BETTER THAN RUSSELL T. DAVIES! SAY IT!’
He probably doesn’t do that. It would be awful if we all started a rumour that he does that at writers’ meetings when anyone criticises his scripts.
You don’t have to be a professional script writer to see that the plot just isn’t there. The public isn’t stupid; they stop watching stuff that isn’t good. Sure, there’s a big ‘reveal’ coming up but the other episodes are supposed to have mini arcs with little hints that build up the series to a woah-dude-crescendo. Clara is currently less endearing than Amy which is quite an achievement. She’s not a doormat; Clara is tough and likes adventure… but they have stopped character development at those two qualities. The traits that every companion has.
3. Why does Clara’s hair bounce so much?
It wasn’t obvious until I read this; the author noted that every time Clara moves, her hair moves. This sounds unimportant until you notice it. Then you can’t see anything else. Every assorted alien, creature and demon could be surrounding a completely naked Clara and you would still be watching her hair with fascination as it bounced for side to side.
In the last episode they had her hair up. Have people been writing in to the BBC complaining about how utterly offensive it is to have her roaming locks all over their television screens? A noble cause if e’er I saw it.
4. Yahoo answers speculations about Clara Oswald’s origin are funny.
Here are the best explanations posted by anonymous users:
‘Maybe it is something to do with Amy and Rory and River! And children!’
‘Clara has nothing to do with freaking Rose Tyler,’
‘Even the Doctor would probably be able to tell that he was related to someone before snogging them.’
‘I have no idea what you are talking about!’
‘My theory is that she is hot’
You are welcome.
5. Russell T. Davies was better. I see that now.
When Steven Moffat took over, I praised him like every other schmuck. I kept saying things like ‘Well Girl in the Fireplace is one of my favourite episodes.’ Wasn’t the fez line funny? Oh how I laughed! Oh how we all laughed, thigh-slapped and updated our Facebook statuses with such glee! ‘Fezzes are cool,’ happily chuckled past me. Past me is, was and always will be an idiot.
I recently read the original scripts from David Tennant’s (and Russell T. Davies’) final episodes The End of Time. I love those episodes. The Doctor isn’t calm or collected or in control. It’s totally frickin’ epic; it goes way beyond a kids show about space aliens. He dies alone in the TARDIS. Isn’t that kind of heart breaking and wonderfully poignant at the same time? No? Just me? I’ll show myself out.
Okay, I’ll try to negotiate my way around the territory of incoherent rambles. Davies attracted an audience beyond Sci Fi fans. Getting nerds to watch Doctor Who is like shooting fish in a barrel. Fish that can’t find their contact lenses. Achieving a loyal audience consisting of those who do not own any special edition Battlestar Galactica box sets requires making a good TV show. Actually I own that box set, so lets say… Star Trek: The Next Generation?
I’m not a nerd at heart. I don’t want to sit around for hours discussing technical slip ups and plot inconsistencies. I enjoy the approach of Red Dwarf which accumulated a staggering number of plot holes and loose ends at the end of Series 2. What they did was show a very quick Star Wars style introduction at the beginning of Series 3 that described the stuff that had occurred. The writing goes by so fast that you would have to record it then regularly pause it to read every word. I like that. Incidentally, having been revived after a ten year hiatus, the new series of Red Dwarf that aired this year was totally awesome. So it’s not all doom and gloom for fans of Sci Fi!
So why do I care about Doctor Who being bad? Well… I suppose… Mainly due to fact that… It used to be brilliant. It should still be brilliant. You’ve got this fantastic back story of the Time War; you have the Doctor with all the clever in the universe but all of this loneliness, isolation and assumed responsibility; and finally, the changing companions immediately facilitate exploration of someone’s life in depth. Jesus, I sound like I’m doing an undergraduate dissertation on it. What I’m saying is… With all it’s got going for it…
WHY CAN’T THEY MAKE IT GOOD?
Has the entire writing team suddenly suffered a traumatic breakup? Are they all in bed eating ice cream and watching Friends repeats? Or have they been infiltrated by a terrorist organisation that wants to undermine the quality of Doctor Who in order to bring Western civilization to its knees? They’re making what anyone can see is bad TV in the knowledge that there is a guaranteed audience that will watch Doctor Who no matter how rubbish it gets. It’s a waste of a series. I for one would rather have no Doctor than this badly scripted buffoon guy appearing every week.
Everything might turn around this Saturday. Clara’s hair could remain stationary; no tiny chanteuse may perform; the Doctor won’t ride some kind of space bike for no apparent reason. Given what has happened thus far it doesn’t seem likely. So this one is a bit of a write off (lol), there’s always next series. Also – Rose is in the finale. I love Rose.
And we’ll always have something no-one can take away from us: the fez joke.
Here is a cat in a fez: