The Doctor's Consort

Doctor who Series 10; He has been away for a while but he is back!

123 posts in this topic

Yeah, it was pretty definitely meant to be set during the 29th century diaspora era (which I believe is a concept continued from Old Who) and I think the writers for some reason felt like adding even more drama and unnecessarily ramped up the 'last humans' thing.

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This week's episode was total boring bollocks. Offered some half-hearted insight that racism is bad and humans can be monsters too, featured a ridiculously out-of-place argument over the Doctor's reaction to seeing people die that ended up having no consequence whatsoever, and otherwise offered nothing of value. Didn't even have the grace to be comically bad like Love & Monsters. I'm not saying it was Fear Her levels but it can see Fear Her without a telescope.

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I thought it was pretty good. Not perfect, plot-wise, but I liked the character work. There's a point that must come nowadays in any new companion's introduction when they have to deal with the fact that the Doctor isn't just a quirky charming eccentric, but has a darker side: and honestly, it's better to do it within an episode, as here, than to draw it out and make it a theme. The plot elements did feel rather recycled, but the plot was background here. Foreground was developing Bill's understanding of what it means to travel with the Doctor.

And tbh, in the world today I don't think doing 'racism is bad' as a theme can ever be redundant.

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10 minutes ago, mormont said:

And tbh, in the world today I don't think doing 'racism is bad' as a theme can ever be redundant.



I didn't think it was redundant, I just thought it was badly done.

In some ways it was reminiscent of The Beast Below with the 'humanity exploiting big lonely alien, Doctor gets angry' except with the re-introduction of the idiotic concept from Kill the Moon and some others that the Doctor can't make decisions for humanity so the companion has to do it, which has never been implemented well and isn't here.


You're probably right that its better to get that out of the way now, although I'm worried because one of the trailers sort of indicated that it would be a theme.

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I thought it was an OK episode, reasonably entertaining but definitely formulaic. It felt a bit unambitious, with many of the plot elements having been done before. I don't think there's been a bad episode so far this season, but there also hasn't been one that really stands out.

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I thought it was beyond solid.

Though I continue to fear the:

Spoiler

Bill is secretly the next Doctor theory...ive come to enjoy her as the companion.

 

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Posted (edited)

By the way, what's beyond the door?

If it was knocking four times I'd be convinced it's John Simms but since it's not it might not be.

Edited by polishgenius

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14 minutes ago, polishgenius said:

By the way, what's beyond the door?

Spoiler

The very last set of knocks before the credits was a group of four...

 

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I think the last couple of episodes have been pretty good, particularly the space station one. I liked the 'capitalism taken to its logical extreme' theme and having to measure distances by the number of breaths of previous oxygen it would take to cover them. The blindness plot device was also effective. It wasn't perfect, the crew didn't get much in the way of characterisation, Matt Lucas was intermittently annoying and sometimes the dialogue was clunky (such as the blue skin racism), but overall I liked it.

The previous episode was a decent haunted house story, even if it is perhaps best not to think too much about some of the details of the plot. So far, I think this looks like it could be Capaldi's best season.

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The last couple episodes were enjoyable, the more recent one more so than the house one just because it felt like in the end there wasn't really any stakes since everyone lived happily ever after despite being eaten by beetles. I think that with Doctor Who, it is important that sometimes, the Doctor can't save everyone, like in tonight's episode. I always go back to the episode The Doctor Dances from Eccelston's lone season where at the end, he is so clearly overjoyed over the fact that everyone lived and there was a happy ending, like a weight had been lifted since so often, that doesn't come to pass. I feel like too often now, these stories just kind of follow the format where most everyone important survives and it's all good. The raw emotion and relief that the ninth Doctor got from saving everyone, would just feel forced if that happened now. This just doesn't feel like it would be possible with how this show is written now days.

Does anyone else kind of wonder if maybe Bill isn't Susan, or at least Susan adjacent? I would love for that to be the case. I don't know how the timelines would work since she was left in the 22n't century, though it's possible that something brought her back in time at some point. Perhaps the woman Bill thinks in her biological mother is her and they are both Susan. I think I'd rather that be the case than her being another iteration of the doctor as I think I've seen bandied about.

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5 hours ago, GrimTuesday said:

The last couple episodes were enjoyable, the more recent one more so than the house one just because it felt like in the end there wasn't really any stakes since everyone lived happily ever after despite being eaten by beetles. I think that with Doctor Who, it is important that sometimes, the Doctor can't save everyone, like in tonight's episode. I always go back to the episode The Doctor Dances from Eccelston's lone season where at the end, he is so clearly overjoyed over the fact that everyone lived and there was a happy ending, like a weight had been lifted since so often, that doesn't come to pass. I feel like too often now, these stories just kind of follow the format where most everyone important survives and it's all good. The raw emotion and relief that the ninth Doctor got from saving everyone, would just feel forced if that happened now. This just doesn't feel like it would be possible with how this show is written now days

I think the Doctor has failed to save everyone in all of the other episodes so far this season. I agree that being eaten by alien space beetles apparently being a reversible process does seem a bit odd.

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I thought the house episode was pretty shit, but I really liked the latest one. Knew I was gonna like it from the off with the whole teary speech then 'well, if my mike worked...', and it continued to be tightly written throughout. These locked-space-station episodes can result in absolute filler, just like the haunted house ones can, but in both cases, when they hit it right they can deliver gold.


The hardcore leftist ideologies being sneaked into children's entertainment made me laugh, though.

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I really liked this week's episode. Tense, dramatic, good character moments, and a nice big middle finger to corporitism.

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Posted (edited)

Enjoyed the latest episode quite a lot. Don't think it was as good as the other Mathieson eps - it seemed a bit closer to generic Doctor Who territory - but I did find the conceit of the dead human bodies trapped in the spacesuits genuinely creepy. Like a nightmare vision of Wallace and Gromit ep "The Wrong Trousers". The plot mostly seemed to fit together very nicely.

The only thing I wondered about was when the Doctor said that the rescue ships coming were just bringing replacements. Now, that might be so, but wouldn't there be a bit of a fuss in the galactic press - if there is one - when the newbies discover a ship full of walking corpses? One imagines it might draw negative attention to the lead mining company. Of course, there are masses of ways to hand-wave it. e.g. robot replacements, humans given hush money, one human discovering a record of tragic oxygen failure on board ship...etc.

The exchange between Bill and Blue Guy seemed a bit off somehow. I wasn't sure what point it was trying to make. It seemed ham-fisted and OOC for Bill. 

Still, I would be very happy if Mathieson were to be a future showrunner. Much better him than Chris Chibnall. 

Edited by dog-days

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Oh, didn't realise this was the Mathieson, no wonder I liked it.

Yeah, it probably wasn't as inventive as his previous (though I'd say it was definitely better than The Girl Who Died), but still the work of a writer who clearly understands Doctor Who. Also clearly a writer who Moffatt trusts- he's handled two big developments now in consecutive seasons. I'm kind of disappointed still that he's not the next showrunner, but then he has absolutely no experience of showrunning afaik so maybe he should go get some of that before he's given this job (plus, in any case, writing single episodes is no guarantee of being great at writing seasons, but...).

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Posted (edited)

21 minutes ago, polishgenius said:

Oh, didn't realise this was the Mathieson, no wonder I liked it.

Yeah, it probably wasn't as inventive as his previous (though I'd say it was definitely better than The Girl Who Died), but still the work of a writer who clearly understands Doctor Who. Also clearly a writer who Moffatt trusts- he's handled two big developments now in consecutive seasons. I'm kind of disappointed still that he's not the next showrunner, but then he has absolutely no experience of showrunning afaik so maybe he should go get some of that before he's given this job (plus, in any case, writing single episodes is no guarantee of being great at writing seasons, but...).

Yeah. If you're reading this, Mr Mathieson, then go and get some experience of showrunning! (I'm not sure how he could do that, mind, unless he has masses of kids and can write a ten episode show for them, then chivy them into acting it out so he can film it on his phone and send it into the BBC.)

Ok, more seriously: Chibnall I think hopped from Doctor Who to being head writer on Torchwood, and that opened up opportunities for him outside of the sci-fi ghetto as showrunner on Law and Order UK and Camelot. But I doubt he'd have been allowed anywhere near the reins of DW if not for the success of Broadchurch. Which I haven't watched - not my kind of show. The Beeb, no doubt looking at DW's falling ratings, are probably hoping he'll be able to reel in a few hundred thousand of the Broadchurch audience. 

Moffat was made showrunner because he'd written a load of the best recent DW episodes, and had masses of writing experience(really - masses: he's written hundreds and hundreds of episodes). If he didn't have showrunner experience, it's probably because the concept of the showrunner hasn't been around that long in the UK. 

Just hope that Mathieson gets the development opportunities thrown his way that Moffat and Chibnall have had. 

Edited by dog-days

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Posted (edited)

30 minutes ago, dog-days said:

Moffat was made showrunner because he'd written a load of the best recent DW episodes, and had masses of writing experience(really - masses: he's written hundreds and hundreds of episodes). If he didn't have showrunner experience, it's probably because the concept of the showrunner hasn't been around that long in the UK.


It seems to me like he was effectively the showrunner on Coupling even if that title hadn't officially come over yet. Does seem like especially on smaller budget/less prominent shows the person titled 'writer' was also doing producing duties quite a lot, and certainly Coupling is his baby.

But anyway yeah, I wonder if he has anything in the pipe, I'd certainly keep an eye out for it. He doesn't seem especially active, although he is basically a rookie as far as I can tell, so time is on his side.

Edited by polishgenius

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Damn, that was a great episode. Was it a Steven Moffat episode? Yes, indeed it was. Thank you Steve Moffat. Perhaps for the last time on Doctor Who, you've knocked it out of the ballpark. 

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That was a good one.

I like this season because Moffat is building up a complicated story brick by brick from the ground up, keeping everything comprehensible and making sure it all makes (relative) sense, as opposed to his previous seasons where he went 0-60 in five seconds and threw every idea he had at the wall and promptly ignored half of it. This feels like Moffat taking a very different tack to his normal approach and it works so much better.

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I'm not 100% convinced that it does make sense but nonetheless that was really good.

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