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Frank Collins
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And not wanting to feel left out, I'm also continuing to post reviews of Series 6 and Who DVD releases over at http://www.cathoderaytube.blogspot.com You'll also find lots of television and film goodness there as well as competitions to win books and DVDs.
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Thought this was by far the strongest script of the series this year. A really decent plot, if half-nicked from 'The Key to Time', and some pretty good performances from Daniel and Anjli and the supporting cast. They demonstrate here and in the previous story that given a good script the series can continue, dare I say it, without the lead actor. Not that I'd want that, I hasten to add. But when required, Clyde and Rani are clearly capable of carrying the series.
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Loved your review, Neil. I think I'm in agreement that the 12 regenerations limit would have made a bloody epic story in itself and would probably have provided a suitably magnificent excuse to then provide the Doctor with an extra life-cycle. Whatever! The line could easily be construed as a throwaway joke and we might get that epic we yearn for. It's all still possible in the upside down world of Doctor Who. The real pleasure here was the gorgeous interplay between Katy and Lis. So lovely to see Manning back in the Whoniverse proper and not making a completely arse of it. And as you say the story pretty much summarises everything that RTD ever brought to the series, including plots that evaporate on the air. Like you, I found some of it really quite moving. But then, I'm a soppy old so-and-so.
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It'll only go well if you buy it Damon. But thank you for being pleased on my behalf. It fair warms the cockles.
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Paul, postmodernism is what you make it as far as I'm concerned! Glad you're cheered by this. Just think of it as a bumper version of the reviews I did on here for the last series. I can't guarantee good jokes but there will be food for thought. Thanks!
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Much as I would love to review The Sarah Jane Adventures, I simply don't have the time at the moment. I am completing the book. This entails a lot of work to get it done on time and on schedule. Alas, SJA reviews will have to wait along with the tons of other reviews that were lined up. So, yes, it's disappointing for you but if you find a way of cloning me then do let me know. I have 25,000 words that one of me could do whilst the other me watches SJA. Them's the brakes, I'm afraid.
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I'll go with that. For what it's worth, I think the series can be read in many different ways. Granted, my own reading is from a particular point of view, primarily that of a gay man watching an episode written by a gay man about how some men are scared of leading their own lives. And they're anxieties that both straight and gay men can understand because of the way it's written to appeal to them both. Perhaps Moffat's going for a 'metrosexual' agenda...
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'Vastly' over-intellectualising? 'Vastly'? Nah. Prefer 'massively'. Or how about over-intellectualisng of 'Brobdingnagian' proportions? That's a belter. :D
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'Infra-red' homosexuality! That means he could turn it on and off by remote control. :D
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I'd have to disagree. I found that there was a whole lot more in that episode that interested me beyond the genre conventions of sci-fi rom-com. The casting of James Corden himself simply begs for the kind of reading I gave it.
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Oh, yes. *Now hitting head on table* Still, it makes Curtis' over-indulgence even more extravagant. Allowing the Doctor to create an entire time stream so that Vincent can tell Amy how hawt she is over the centuries. Yuk.
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Quite right. He was her son. And I said he was her son right at the top of the review and then changed that to brother later in the review. Senility is setting in. Nurse, where's me tablets!
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Matthew, glad it's not just me then. Now the fuss has died down since 'The Eleventh Hour' debuted, I've had the same thoughts about the way this season has been structured. It does rather uncannily mirror that first RTD season and in doing that I agree there has perhaps been a slight aversion to going out on a limb and more of a concentration on changing the cosmetic appearance of the show. And as you say we've got a rather good Doctor at the centre of it all. Is 'Amy's Choice' this year's 'Father's Day' then I wonder?
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Hello, Lee! Lovely to see you over here. Thanks for the comments about the review. Interesting ideas there about the power of stories in the season. It'll be fascinating to see if your hypothesis is borne out by the rest of the season. Whilst I might agree that 'Victory Of Daleks' has some lovely ideas in it the script that contained them was begging for two episodes to properly explore them. What we got was clunky and messy. And don't get me started about the re-design of the Daleks. If your entire episode is going to revolve around such a major change then you'd better make sure a)it's a bloody good episode and b)you don't cock up the design. And that's my last word on the bloody Daleks.
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Yes, that whole notion about Mark Gatiss' episode was thrown into sharp relief with this. Here, the pacing was supporting the plot development and characterisation precisely because there was room to develop it over two episodes. The Dalek story really did need to be longer to avoid the disjointed quality we ended up with and would have been all the better for it.
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Thanks for comments. I was not personally suggesting for one minute that Islam actually is "the most powerful, most malevolent life form that evolution ever produced" but I'm sure most of us would agree that the so called ideological 'war on terror' being conducted by the West is directed at Islam. Islam is being 'demonised' by the West and vice versa. I found it interesting to view the episode from that perspective despite, what I agree, are the negative connotations suggested by a reading of such imagery and references. I'm sure if this episode went out 30 years ago then the ideology of the Cold War would be used as a comparable analogy. There are probably just as many Christians who would equally disagree with your own chain of thought over the suggestion that Moffat is discrediting that faith, as satirical as it may be, with the episode's suggestion that the Christian Church defend itself using a team of crack troops, explosives and guns. Interesting stuff...
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You're perfectly correct and I shall adjust immediately! Bit rusty on my war films, y'see.
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Exactly. The class structure of the Daleks is another affectation too far for me. I don't care if they're an homage to TV 21 or whatever it is. And then naming one Eternal because it sounds cool? Never mind. Character Options will have pound signs in their eyes.
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You see, I didn't think it was at all clear. I was left very confused by that sequence of Amy in the voting booth. It needed a bit more clarity for me and until I'd seen it for the third time I was quite ready to go on a wild goose chase involving time loops!
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What a cracking review. A really good summary. Yes, I did wonder what the poor old Hath and Ood had done to become the galaxy's most wanted. I am hoping we've got a 70s super-computer agenda going in the TARDIS. One that complements the sex toy agenda. Is it just a lighting effect or is it like...some kind of scanner? Whatever, it's purdy. Me, I just don't want any more of that 'I'm chirpy but inside I'm hurting crap' that became so very worn out by Tennant in the end. No more 'I'm the Last Of The Timelords...boo hoo...I'm sad' stuff. It's over and done with. Just give me a bonkers Doctor and a companion who really doesn't want to get into his pants. That'll do me.
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Great bit of analysis there. The weird scanner thing at the end hadn't passed me by and it obviously does have some sort of significance. Whether it's a lie detector is debatable. It's obviously registering something that he wants to keep to himself - something to do with the crack in the universe that he already knows about perhaps - and doesn't want her to see. That scanner is just an indication of the bigger story that's going on and in which Amy is already a part. With that in mind, the whole idea of him protecting her is key perhaps. She's important to the time-line and he is shifty about the reason for taking her with him. He knows she's important in some way and as Moffat has hinted in DWM - he has a time machine and therefore will know how crucial she is to later events - and that is I suspect what is at the centre of the timey-wimey Moffat structure to the season.
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As in 'nurse-boy' rather than 'Doctor-man' perhaps?
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I think quite a bit of it is, particularly the sub-plot with the alien threat. But I also think Matt, Karen and Moffat do offer something a bit more refreshing with the new Doctor and Amy. And Adam Smith really pushes the look of the series more towards the cinematic rather than the glossy version of CBBC we've been watching the last five years. You could also say that the start of the season mirrors that first RTD series - the next story takes us to the far future and the next back into the past with Daleks too. How Moffat executes these will be of greater importance I feel. Let's wait and see.
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The 'Gaviscon' title sequence! Love that because it perfectly sums up how I feel about it too. That's going to stay with me for the rest of the season now...a bit like acid indigestion, in fact! :D
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Hello, Lisa Well yes, horror stories about title sequences! I still haven't recovered from the logo used in the Sylvester McCoy era and certainly the theme arrangements by Messrs Glynn and McCulloch still send the wrong kind of shiver down my spine. But like all fans, we live with it because we're only really interested in the episodes. And I think we're in for a treat for this year!
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