Monday, September 15, 2014

Listen - A Clever Little Moffat

Since I've mostly covered Classic and Audio Who up till now, something won't be that clear. That I'm not one of the fans that complains about Moffat's tenure as Showrunner. However, I do think he's a brilliant episode writer, but I'm just not sure he should be in the big seat for much longer.

I wasn't a big fan of 'The Pandorica Opens',* but I loved Clara's debut, and the revelations in 'The Name of the Doctor'. But in 'Listen' Stephen Moffat manages to makes us believe he's pulling off another 'Blink'. And he does a brilliant job of it. The monster you can't see. The thing that has you talking out loud despite no one else being there. The reason you never feel alone. It's genius storytelling, and it has all the hallmarks of the man that brought us the Weeping Angels and the Silence. It's possibly the scariest Who Moffat's ever done too. It was so easy to just accept he was doing it again.

Except he wasn't. He wasn't doing anything of the sort.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Who Robs from the Rich to Give to the Poor? - The Doctor meets Robin Hood

A light hearted episode. It shouldn't be that much of a surprise for New Who. A light hearted episode always slides in there early on. Yet I can't help feel it was a mistake. We're going for a darker Doctor, it feels way too soon to be throwing an episode like this around.

Then again it does manage to tell us a bit about our new Doctor. By teaming him up with Robin Hood, a man who as far as history is concerned doesn't exist, and having the Doctor spend most of his time refusing to believe he was real, we get to see a more cynical Doctor. Tennant and Smith would have both gone along with the Robin Hood ruse with smiles on their faces. The reveal that it was a robot would be the twist for their version of this story. That Capaldi refused to admit it, and the twist being Robin is real, sets him very much apart from his two big predecessors.

Monday, September 01, 2014

Into the Dalek - the Dark Doctor

It’d be easy to look at 'Into The Dalek' and think “Oh, a new Doctor, radically different to any since the restart, let’s keep them watching by bringing out the Daleks. Everyone loves the Daleks.” Yet it’s decidedly cleverer than that. We’ve already seen that this is a new Doctor trying to figure out exactly who he is. Who better to find that out against, than his greatest enemy?

This is the enemy who Davison picked up a gun against without even thinking. That Tom Baker nearly wiped out as they were created. That Sylvester McCoy did something massive about, like maybe blowing up their planet, I think, I still haven’t watched Revelation of the Daleks.

The Daleks bring out the worst in the Doctor, so who better than Twelve to have his identity crisis with than the one enemy who will show him how bad he can be? And for a Doctor who is struggling to figure out just who he is, we do see his terrible decision-making when it comes to Daleks. While he doubted it would work, he really hoped that he could save Rusty, but on learning that the only thing that had made Rusty ‘good’ was radiation poisoning, he gave up at the fact all Daleks are evil, and he was right all along. It takes Clara to knock him back on course, just like she did at the Moment, to get on with things and actually think of another way.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Take A Deep Breath: It's a New Doctor

This weekend brought us the Twelfth Doctor, and since today is Doctor Who day, I'll be taking a look at Peter Capaldi's first proper time out with the role.

My Classic Who and Big Finish lookbacks are pretty far advanced compared to what's been published – I've actually got about eleven already to go - but they're going on hiatus while we have all new Who to worry about. If there's any two parters then I'll wait until they're finished and do them in a oner. When I look at a Classic story I do the whole thing at once, so it's only fair New Who gets the same treatment. So on those one or two occasions during the new series you might get a Classic Who article instead.

Well, except for Cyberman 2. I'll put that out Friday. My Maths went wrong.

Anyway. Capaldi.

Friday, August 22, 2014

No Friday Blogs

Well, not ever. But definitely more sporadic. Which probably doesn't come as a surprise to anyone who reads this place regularly as they've already been a bit spotty. Basically while I was a full-time writer, I had this place to take a break and write about sci-fi and games I wasn't being paid to write about, and everything was great. But bills were getting harder to pay and I had to get a job. This meant less time for writing, and I ended up using all that time just keeping here up to date. Which is the exact opposite of what this place is meant to be. This is meant to be me waxing lyrical about stuff I have to write about, not grinding an article for a deadline. More to the point I feel I wasn't doing a brilliant job of those I did publish. Not just missing posts, but the writing of some of them hasn't been up to the standard I expect of myself.

There's also one rather important fact, the one that really got me thinking. I haven't been finding the time to write fiction. The stuff I really want to write. So I sat down, and decided something had to give. It was the random Friday posts or Doctor Who that was on the chopping block. I'm keeping my jaunts through Time and Space because I'm really enjoying writing those, and there's very little chance of me falling behind as I've got so many banked. Plus Capaldi launches tomorrow night :D

So Friday becomes a non-update day. Or at least not a regular one. I'll still write about the big stuff like when the next Marvel movie comes out. But it's when the mood hits me now. Or at least till the writing starts paying the bills again.

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Doctor gets his Doctor Doom - Terror of the Autons

We start the second series with Pertwee in the main role with the same bad guy as the first, The Autons. This would strike me as a really odd decision except they've added Master, who sees his debut here and proceeds to be the bad guy for the entire season.

We also meet Jo Grant, the Doctor's new companion after Liz Shaw's one and only series. Liz is not even given a decent goodbye, but is written out between seasons because she went back to Cambridge. But at least the Brigadier gets the decent line of “what you need, Doctor, as Miss Shaw herself so often remarked, is someone to pass you your test tubes, and to tell you how brilliant you are.”

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Road to Spider-Verse

I make no secret of my love for Spider-Man, in fact I practically wrote a love letter to him a few months ago. Since then I have actually managed to read some Superior with Doc Ock web-slinging. But now Peter's back in charge of his own body, Miguel has his own comic again, and Kaine's title might have ended, but he got to join the New Warriors by the same writer, so it's cheat continuation. All in all it's a great time to be Spider-Man.

Yet that's not all. For you see Dan Slott is building towards a giant Spider Event called Spider-Verse. It's been a long time since I've got all fanboyie about a big crossover but Spider-Verse has sent me back to that way of thinking.