Doctor Who - Series 9


Television

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Is this the season of all two-parters?

Is Clara a better character now that her fiance is dead? Should she have taken a pot-shot in the dalek at Missy on general principles?


I never liked Clara that much to begin with, but she is not the problem. Moffat has run out of ideas. Let's see, this season we've had two arcs of "This time the Doctor dies for realsies!" On top of the other two he's done. Oh, and what to do with Clara? Well, we've only put her in a Dalek twice before. Nobody will notice if we do it again.

*sigh*

Sovereign Court

sigh indeed....


Moffat needs to GTFO. He wrote a couple of damn good stories but almost immediately proved himself entirely unsuited to running the show with his generally terrible stories, bad use of companions and his almost Michael Bayan blindness to everything except forcing whatever harebrained idea he has into an episode without any regard for continuity, characterization, consistency or taste.


Eh, I've enjoyed this season so far more than the last at least. I've only seen the first three episodes though.


Well, at least no one here is complaining about sonic sunglasses.


I do hate those.


I don't particularly like them, but I don't hate them either.

The Sonic Screwdriver is so much more...Doctor Who than the glasses, but every Doctor has a quirk. Capaldi's seems to be trying desperately to be "hip" and "with it" (sunglasses, guitar, etc.) and looking hilariously awkward doing so. Intentional or not, it's fun to watch to me.


The issues with Dr Who these days seem to be that someone devises a good quality long story, but then this is cut down for length and to add "action" scenes to the point that the story loses any credibility or internal consistency. The worst for this has to be the ridiculous ghost in the submarine two-parter.

Spoiler:

Can anyone give me a clue as to why the red shirts, sorry crew members, were being turned into ghosts, or an even slightly plausible reason for the doctor would be a ghost for the cliffhanger? because the one given at the end of the second episode, I'm sorry, I'm not buying it!


As opposed for the good old days when someone devised a good quality story, that was then padded to fill out the episode count - a common complaint about classic Who.

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coldvictim, I liked the ghost episodes. The Doctor's ghost was pretty clearly there AS a cliffhanger, but I thought the idea of turning spirits into [ spoiler ] was a nice villainous plan.


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Shadowborn wrote:
Well, at least no one here is complaining about sonic sunglasses.

Apparently the sunglasses have already been broken and repaired at least once, going by previews of this Saturday's episode. If they are not permanently destroyed before the Christmas special, what is the chance that River Song will fail to permanently destroy them as she did with the Doctor's western hat a few years ago?

Silver Crusade

Mostly I feel that there have already been plenty of wasted opportunities. Clara never particularly struck me, so I'll abstain from further judgement, but her emotional scenes with the Doctor fall flat for me since they don't really hold a candle to those he has had with previous companions.

Anyway, the Fisher King was completely wasted. Excellent design, voice, presence, apparently some sort of necromancer, and what do we get? Maybe 5 minutes of him, without the Doctor even so much as questioning who he is or what he wants. Why does he let the Doctor go? Apparently, because he just got tired of the Doctor's time-babble. Then he gets crushed by a torrent of water, the end. But hey, at least we had a whole scene dedicated to looking for Clara's phone!

And even though I can roll with it, I still don't really buy that a couple scratches in the wall can irrevocably alter your mind and soul, and turn you into an honest to goodness ghost. What, after years of everything having an albeit tenuous logical explanation, even the time the Devil himself had a quasi-believable backstory, now we're just straight up carving magic runes into s$#!? After the whole deal with the Doctor vehemently not believing in the afterlife at the end of the last series, now ghosts are perfectly reasonable?

Mainly, this series seems to be lacking direction. Nearly every season of New Who has had a throughline that has vaguely connected everything, some times more than others. What is it now? Searching for Gallifrey? If that's it, he's not trying very hard. It just seems like a lot of meandering, which is fine sometimes, but I'd really appreciate some structure about now.

Also, those

Spoiler:
Dalek/Time Lord Hybrids
really did just seem like normal Daleks, didn't they? Maybe they'll be back, but that's the best the latest series seems to be giving us: maybe something will be important later. For now? Just watch them faff about a lot, and occasionally something cool will happen. I mean, the Time Lords are back, somewhere; you'd think a lot more cool things would be happening!


I don't recall old Who generally having series-long arcs except for the Key of Time. It did, however, tend to have 4-6 episode long stories.

American shows tend to have an overarching story which is told over a whole season or several seasons, with little side-trips to explore the development of the character of recurring characters (there's probably a more elegant way to put that). They are very much about the development of the continuing characters and a single story. Dr Who isn't like that. It is a series of individual stories that are tied together by being about or involving one character, the Doctor. Frequently, in fact usually, it is that he stumbles into someone else's story. There are gaps and we don't know what happens to him in them. We just see the interesting bits. It's as if he is a storyteller and he is telling us the stories he has become involved in. In some ways it isn't really about the Doctor at all, it is about a new cast and a new story each time. It's just that the Doctor and (usually) his companion(s) witness these stories and tell us about them. In contrast, something like Stargate is primarily about the main continuing cast and the weekly temporary characters are very much less important.

YMMV, of course.


Creative folks and die-hard fans tend to prefer more serial shows with multi-episode, season-long, and series-long plotlines.

Execs and sorta fans tend to prefer episodic shows, where if you miss an episode or 7 (or syndication airs them out of order), it is still easy to pick up.

Studios have developed a hybrid approach to most long-running series, usually starting in the second or third season (first is still usually very episodic), to have episodic plotlines, combined with larger meta-plotlines that last a whole season or longer.


KJL wrote:

I don't recall old Who generally having series-long arcs except for the Key of Time. It did, however, tend to have 4-6 episode long stories.

American shows tend to have an overarching story which is told over a whole season or several seasons, with little side-trips to explore the development of the character of recurring characters (there's probably a more elegant way to put that). They are very much about the development of the continuing characters and a single story. Dr Who isn't like that. It is a series of individual stories that are tied together by being about or involving one character, the Doctor. Frequently, in fact usually, it is that he stumbles into someone else's story. There are gaps and we don't know what happens to him in them. We just see the interesting bits. It's as if he is a storyteller and he is telling us the stories he has become involved in. In some ways it isn't really about the Doctor at all, it is about a new cast and a new story each time. It's just that the Doctor and (usually) his companion(s) witness these stories and tell us about them. In contrast, something like Stargate is primarily about the main continuing cast and the weekly temporary characters are very much less important.

YMMV, of course.

Classic Who didn't, though some of the later seasons had more continuity between stories.

New Who pretty much has, though it's definitely varied from season to season. Some being essentially episodic with occasional references to the season's metaplot - usually unrecognized at first, then being revealed in or near the season ender. Others where the metaplot was more dominant throughout.

Overall New Who has been less just about the Doctor wandering into other people's stories, though he certainly still does that.

I haven't actually seen any of the latest season yet, so I can't comment on how it fits the pattern. I suspect there is some season main plot, even if it isn't apparent yet.


I have to say, the part two of the Maisie Williams two parter might be one of my favorite Who episodes. She really is one of the best actors of GoT, and I would love to see her take a turn as a companion in the future.


Part 1 was my favorite episode of the season so far (despite the villains being pretty weaksauce), so if the new one is at least as good I'll be happy.

Maybe they can keep that level of quality. So far I've liked every episode except episode 2 of "Underwater Ghosts: IN SPAAAAACE" well enough. More than the last season anyway.


Part 2 was very entertaining. I like things that ponder the perils of immortality


For the most part I'm enjoying the current series and Capaldi's version of the Doctor.

I think Rynjin is on the money with it. This is an old Man trying to be hip and cool in an awkward way and it's brilliant and then every so often you see the Old man rise to the surface. An Old Man who has seen too much and is still trying to pretend that a large part of his life never happened. "The old man who runs away."

the bit where he realized "Why this Face" was great and I think it helps his character a lot.

Anyone else want to see a Captain Jack + Lady Me team up story

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Even more so now, after "Face the Raven". It puts the modern Lady Me in context for Captain Jack.

Dark Archive

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Is it wrong of me to be glad that Clara's gone? Her whole story has been adrift ever since Danny Pink died.


Misroi wrote:
Is it wrong of me to be glad that Clara's gone?

Certainly not. I've detested Clara since her introduction because of that awful nonsense about her timeline diving as well as being a generally terrible companion and all-round annoying person and, most importantly, how the Doctor is so obsessed with her (and all the other terrible companions in nuWho). At best, Clara is ignorable, as in the underwater two-parter. At worst she his genuinely horrible to watch.

I loved her dying, despite the drama immediately preceding it. I am just convinced that they will make an arse-pull save before giving her a nice final farewell for a quiet life.
They haven't had the balls to actually kill a companion since Adric, and while we was not the greatest companion he was leagues better than anything in nuWho apart from Captain Jack.

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I won't go so far as to say I detested her. I just felt like she was a ship adrift for this entire season. I mean, she lost Danny, and that should be something she's working through this season. Instead, she's thrown herself feet first into the Doctor's adventures. Maybe she has a death wish, maybe she's trying to cram in as much adventure as she can with the time allotted to her, maybe this is her form of grief - but the elephant in the TARDIS has never been addressed to my satisfaction, and as a result, she's this fifth wheel, along just so the Doctor has someone to riff off of.

Case in point - Clara is wearing the sonic specs (another bit of this season I wish I could remove) and dangling out the TARDIS door high above London. The TARDIS hits some turbulence (or whatever), and it's jostled, flinging her waist-deep outside the door. The Doctor is worried about how she is perfectly fine with this - there's not any worry with her that she might plummet to certain doom. I'm sure the thought in her head is "The Doctor will save me." But for all the posturing that he does about how important Clara is to him, they never discuss how unhealthy her obsession with running around the galaxy with the Last Son of Gallifrey really is. Maybe that's coming in one of the last two episodes, maybe it's not. But dammit, this should have been discussed prior to this - her death is on The Doctor's hands, and he better damn well know it.


Yet at the end when she knows that the Doctor can't save her, Me can't save her and she can't save herself, when there is nothing that she can do except face her executioner, she walks out and does it. She's clearly afraid, but she accepts the consequences of the decisions that she took to save Rigsy. She won't let the Doctor go bad because of it. It is a very brave death.

The Impossible Girl is scattered throughout the Doctor's timeline. They don't need to undo Clara's death to have more of the Impossible Girl and much as I love her I hope they don't. It was a good death and heroic in the way of ordinary people's heroism, facing what has to be faced.


I don't know, it seems like everyone's taking issue with Moffat and Clara (and the sonic specs, which I agree on), but Series 9 seems just as Whovian as any other Series I've watched, and that's coming from someone who started with Tom Baker.

Just given the internet buzz, I've been waiting to watch Clara meet her end since the beginning of this series, and it did not disappoint. Less shocking than Adric, though, I'll freely admit that.


I'm an idiot.
I just realized what Me's real name was. I blame English who can't pronounce things worth s##$ and don't understand grammatical suffixes.

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Ashilda?


Probably supposed to be Áshild - at least I've seen it written Ashildr when I googled it to check my hunch.
So with butchered pronunciation in non-rhotic accents you get what you hear in the show.

The -r is the strong masculine nominative suffix in old Norse, and too many people open a dictionary and don't get that, which is why you see things like Jormungandr (but not Thorr - or Þorr - for some reason).

Now you could argue that they've probably never heard of the name before and therefor have no idea how to pronounce it, but honestly, that's 5 minutes of looking it up, tops. It would sound bad but recognizable unlike this mess.

The Exchange

F#!!ing English. Imagine not being able to pronounce Old Norse?


Read the last line in the post just above yours.
And Åshild is a name that is still in use so it's even easier to find a half-way decent pronunciation.

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You realise that the Scandinavian demographic is probably not the first thought when coming up with character names for British shows? And sometimes things are Anglicised so those without a background in Nordic languages can get a grip on it. And, watching The Bridge, I can tell that the Swedes and the Danes pronounce the main character's name differently, so there clearly isn't a single way of doing these things. And given all the other b~&$~&!s in Dr Who, including a very casual attitude to actual science in what is described as a science fiction show, picking on this seems somewhat eccentric as an example of inaccuracy.

But yeah, I haven't seen it yet but I'm glad Clara is dead. A really irritating character.


There's different pronunciations and there's wrong pronunciations.
If all it takes to get a general idea of how to pronounce a name is 5 minutes (tops) looking it up, it's worth to take that time when you're putting on a show. It may be butchered but it will probably at least be a recognizable attempt.

Science..I already accept time travel and what basically amounts to gods - the moon being an egg is rather tame compared to other stuff they've had on there.


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Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:

There's different pronunciations and there's wrong pronunciations.

If all it takes to get a general idea of how to pronounce a name is 5 minutes (tops) looking it up, it's worth to take that time when you're putting on a show. It may be butchered but it will probably at least be a recognizable attempt.

Science..I already accept time travel and what basically amounts to gods - the moon being an egg is rather tame compared to other stuff they've had on there.

It's okay: I am still deeply annoyed that the vikings had electric eels, which are endemic to South America


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Vikings also didn't generally have horned helmets. I think a lot of the things they got wrong might have been deliberate -- but we won't know that for sure unless they attach some significance to those things in the last couple of episodes.

One point of interest, for those of you who remember the two parter The End of Time: Do you remember the horrors that the doctor named that would escape into our universe if the Time Lords were freed from their time lock? I think we have seen most if not all of them this season. Ashildr, for example, is clearly the "Nightmare Child" -- and the sewers of Skaro were clearly full of "Skaro Degradations".


The viking inaccuracies and eels were instantly annoying, the whole point of my little post was pointing out how wrong Ashild was pronounced to the extent that I couldn't recognize what it was supposed to be until several weeks later, not that it was as bad or worse than the butchering of science or history or zoology/geography (what's the term for the study of where animals live?) and certainly not as bad as the characters they give us.


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
But yeah, I haven't seen it yet but I'm glad Clara is dead. A really irritating character.

Clara may be dead but the Impossible Girl is scattered all over the Doctor's timeline. While Jenna Coleman is alive, she can reappear! :-)


Since the Doctor has his sonic sunglasses, this is the perfect opportunity for him to give his sonic screwdriver to River, since he doesn't need it any longer.


Oh boy
Is it next Saturday yet


thenovalord wrote:

Oh boy

Is it next Saturday yet

No, it is last Saturday.


A few ok ideas but generally rubbish. So a bit better than most of Moffat's efforts since he took over.


I thought that last nights episode was one of the better episodes in awhile. It managed to both the creepy nature of some Dr. Who while also being rather smart in its plot, something that um...a lot of Moffat Who hasn't always succeeded at.

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Without spoiling "Hell Bent", whoa.

And my first thought afterwards was: "And Jenny's still out there."


Apart from the old console room coming back (briefly) and a few lines that could have been spouted by D4, it was utter crap.
All the s*&* I dislike about Moffat in one package.

F+%* you, Moffat, for mishandling DW even worse than RTD. I think Clara has even surpassed Rose as the worst companion.


I rather liked it


I rather enjoyed it

It was a bit offputting to see the Doctor with a gun though. That's not something that should ever happen

Next up River Song
(woohoo)


Decent episode.

Disappointed this means Clara could come back. Face the Raven was a good send-off, so of course Moffat had to ruin it somehow.

Can't possibly have a character face their death honorably and own up to their own screw-up, no, they have to not just survive but BE REWARDED for their own stupidity. F!#$ youuuuuuuuu.


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That series ended pretty well with two good episodes. Face the Raven definitely the low point of the series. And while I liked one or two episodes from the last series more than some in this one, it was an improvement overall.

Cheers
Mark


Mark Norfolk wrote:
Face the Raven definitely the low point of the series.

Wat


Greylurker wrote:

I rather enjoyed it

It was a bit offputting to see the Doctor with a gun though. That's not something that should ever happen

Hm,.. I think I understand where your coming from, But I'm not sure I agree. Previous Doctors have grabbed a gun and threatened to use them before when the situation demanded. David Tennant in his last episode for one, and even Tom Baker held the bad guys at gunpoint at least once while rescuing Sarah Jane Smith. (AGAIN!) :)

BBEG-"And what do you do for an encore Doctor?"

Dr ?- "I win!"

In your defense though, I do not recall his ever actually firing the gun. Or killing anyone if he did. :P That's the part that bothered me. Even his comment afterwords ,...

Spoiler:

"Killed a man? This is Gallifrey.'Death' is Gallifrean for Man-Flu"

,... Couldn't quite wipe that bad taste out. :/
Another example of how far the Doctor has gone past his own rules.

Greylurker wrote:


Next up River Song
(woohoo)

Indeed!

On THIS we agree! :D

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