Pre-Pandorica Reading (Dr Who linkage)

Ah, the Doctor Who season finale two parter looms close. The Pandorica will open and silence will fall…

But, lacking a TARDIS, or preview tapes, we shall have to fill our empty hours with some good Who reading.

I've been really enjoying Andrew Rilstone's Fish Custard series, which starts here:

Seasons 3 and 4 were so bad, and the End of Time was so jawdroppingly shameful, that one is tempted to rave about Steven Moffat on general principles – to give him the Nobel Peace Prize simply because he is not George W. Bush. On the other hand, the degeneration from Dalek and the Satan Pit (as good or better than anything in the Original Series) to, say, the Stolen Earth (literally beneath contempt) happened so quickly that one feels one should err on the side of caution.

Suffice it to say that he gets a lot more positive as the Fish Custard flows on, right up until some interesting speculation about the finale

And this look at disability in the current series of Who is worth a read, too:

I don’t mind telling you that I’ve spent a lot of time watching the new series and cringing, waiting for something to go terribly, horribly wrong. We’ve had two characters show up on the screen with a disability, and neither of them have been evil or horrible, and neither has died valiantly so that more worthy folks can live. It’s been kinda awesome.

Yes, I know this isn't going to fill much of the week's wait, but it's a start…

“Chicks Don’t Get Doctor Who”?

Chicks don’t get it. Unless you are in a relationship where the woman is legally obligated to stay with you or you have possession of her car keys, for Time Lord’s sake, don’t bring up the Doctor.

via oofblamargh.typepad.com

I don’t buy that. Back in the 1980s or 90s, Who fandom was pretty much all blokes. But those days appear to be gone – I’m sure there are as many new female Who fans amongst my Twitter followers, for example, as there are guys.

Anyone care to back me up on this?

Eleventh Doctor trailer 3

w00t! Another trailer for the new series of Doctor Who (thanks, Michael):

How awesome is this? Let's enumerate the ways:

  1. The Amy-balloon. I want an Amy balloon, and we haven't even been introduced to her yet…
  2. World War II Daleks
  3. Stonehenge. It may be tiny and disappointing in real life, but this makes it look cool.
  4. Cyberman FROM THE CRYPT.
  5. What looks suspiciously like aircraft versus a flying saucer
  6. Did I mention World War II Daleks?

I'm quite excited. You may have noticed…

Selling the Kids on the Eleventh Doctor

Last weekend, we went to the cinema with Stacey  to see Alice in Wonderland. And very enjoyable it was, too. But that's not what I want to write about. You see, as it was an afternoon screening, and thus full of kids, they showed the 3D trailer for the new series of Doctor Who that starts next month:

As the 11th Doctor's distinctive physiognomy swam into view, a defiant pre-teen voice announced loudly to the cinema: "I hate him." 

Yes, a small boy hates a version of the Doctor he has seen for all of about a minute's screen time. But then, he's one of a whole generation of new Who fans who are having to deal with an experience that's completely new to them: the Doctor becoming someone else. If that boy was 8 or 9, David Tennant was the Doctor for pretty much the whole of his life. He might vaguely remember the Christopher Ecclestone series – and he's probably watched it – but the tenth Doctor is his Doctor, and this guy is some impostor.

And this is perhaps the last of the great challenges for the new Who: can it survive the transition to a new Doctor, after a long-running, popular predecessor? It's worth bearing in mind that the last time the series successfully achieved this was way back in 1982, when my 10-year old self watched with mingled horror, excitement and dismay as my beloved fourth Doctor fell off a radio telescope and became the alarmingly youthful fifth Doctor. 

So, it's been 28 years since this form of switch was pulled off successfully. That's a challenge. And there will be a generation for whom David Tennant will be as Jon Pertwee was for me: something from the past. And they'll be easy to win over. The adult fans will come easily, if the quality stays high. The challenge is that key childhood group that drive the appeal of this family show. "I don't want to go," said the tenth Doctor as regeneration overtook him. Many of the audience would have been sharing that same feeling. 

The Stephen Moffat, Matt Smith and company have about an hour to persuade the kids that the change is good

Me? I'm already persuaded. I'm looking forward to the new Who. Much as I enjoyed the RTD era, its tics and weaknesses were aggravating me by the end of the End of Time. Time for something fresh. Time for change.