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I'm really not digging the new season thus far, and I can't put my finger on exactly why.



Each episode has watchable bits, and Karen Gillan has extremely pretty hair. But, for the most part, the season has been a big snore.

Is it too much of a kids' show? Well, the rainbow of Daleks was pretty annoying, although to be honest the physical redesign bothered me more than the recolor- that weird blocky thing the zap gun and the plunger come out of? Was that always there? (And, since the Dalek casing is a machine, why did they need genetic... never mind. That Progenitor thing is a jerk, I guess.)

Is it that the Doctor is full of himself? Yeah, kind of. That trap speech in episode 4 was a groaner. But all the Doctors are like that, even my beloved Ninth. (I almost typed "Nine." Heh.)

I don't understand it. The Empty Child was awesome. Blink was a lot of fun. What, if anything, changed? Is it just me? (Probably.)

(crossposted)

Date: 2010-04-25 04:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tavella.livejournal.com
I'm not much of a Moffat fan, so I'm not terribly surprised. The Empty Child/Doctor Dances are indeed excellent, but other than that Moffat's been somewhat of a one-hit wonder. The 'stick the companions in a box so that the Doctor can be in love with my Special Fairy Princess' was annoying in Girl in the Fireplace and intolerable in Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead. The 'force the Doctor/protagonist to be a total idiot so that my plot works' was grating in GitF -- seriously, the Doctor is a *creature of time, he's had it demonstrated to him a couple of times that time passes faster on the other side, and instead of saying "come with me, we'll pick up clothes later" he says 'oh, yes, go pack while I skip off' -- and laughable in Blink.

I'll grant that the two of them saying oh how can we escape, oh yes we'll look in the cellar for a coal chute IN FRONT OF THE PROMINENT MOONLIT WINDOWS was likely partially the director's fault, but the supposedly blink-fast angels taking ages to cross 20 feet turned them into comedy. And more bothersome to me was the indifference to the plight of the time kidnappees -- obviously they had to suffer and continue to suffer so that they would serve the cause of the Doctor being able to jaunt around the universe.

Yes, I'm not even impressed by the oh so holy Blink.

Date: 2010-04-25 04:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jmatonak.livejournal.com
Yes, I'm not even impressed by the oh so holy Blink.

I liked it, but I have to admit a lot of that was down to Sally Sparrow. I wouldn't call the episode "holy", certainly.

As far as the Special Fairy Princess goes... I think Alex Kingston did a good job with the material she was handed, but that entire secret agent bit in the beginning was extremely grating. I'm not sure if that's the writing or direction or what.

Date: 2010-04-25 05:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tavella.livejournal.com
Oh, I think Blink started okay, even good, but fell apart at the end, and I *really* disliked the whitewashing of the suffering of the other kidnappees. Without that, it would have been a flawed episode but pretty decent overall for a Doctor-light episode. But that left a nasty taste in my mouth.

The holy part is referring to all the people who think it's the best and scariest Who episode ever.

Date: 2010-04-25 11:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] caz963.livejournal.com
Here via [livejournal.com profile] who_daily

the best and scariest Who episode ever.

That's Midnight. Obvously ;-)

I'm trying really hard to see the good and be patient because it's a new team and they're settling in and all that... but having said that, they're professionals and if they want my attention on a regular basis, they shouldn't have to "settle in". I think that the direction has been very uneven - Matt Smith was let down badly last week, I thought - where are the likes of Graeme Harper and Euros Lyn?

Not that there weren't things wrong under RTD - but most of what I've seen of S5 so far has been like ... a picture with the colours washed out. I did like this week's episode, but it was more plot than character driven, and those are the sorts of stories where DW can still do well, even if it's running on autopilot.
Edited Date: 2010-04-25 11:01 pm (UTC)

Date: 2010-04-27 08:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jmatonak.livejournal.com
...where are the likes of Graeme Harper and Euros Lyn?

They could be saving them for later, but I think the new production team is trying to put their stamp on the show- be different for the sake of being different, among other reasons. They seem to be aiming for something that's really popular with kids and kind of tolerable for parents. :)

Date: 2010-04-27 10:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] caz963.livejournal.com
The "different for the sake of it" was something that really worried me after EoT. I've been - a little bit - reassured by some of the things that have happened so far, like the references back to earlier series, as Moff seems to have been trying hard to tell us "no, look - it's the same guy, honest!" Although I have my doubts that that will continue.

I like what I've seen so far, but I don't love it the way I did. Maybe it'll take more time. After all, David had what, four and a half years in the part, which makes him one of the longest serving Doctors. My biggest problem at the moment, is that I'm not feeling the emotional connection I did with the show under Rusty. Each to their own, I suppose.

Date: 2010-04-25 11:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wendymr.livejournal.com
Nice to see someone else who feels like I do. Yes, I'm bored too. I wanted to love this season. I wanted to love the new Doctor. And, though I haven't been the greatest Moffat fan (loathed SITL/FOTD), I appreciate that he's a good writer and I was impressed by RTD's comments about him in The Writer's Tale. And I did love his S1 episodes.

But... bored. Most of it's Matt Smith's acting, which to me is completely unconvincing. With that lack of acting talent, poor writing will definitely show through. Let's face it, anyone who has the talent of Christopher Eccleston or David Tennant to work with, plus most of the actors playing companions, can't go far wrong. Even with the occasional poor scripts that surfaced, Tennant and Eccleston still managed to shine and produce memorable moments. Smith just can't deliver a line to save his life. And, yes, I agree with your comment on that 'trap' speech. He sounded like a scared little kid facing down the school bullies. Compare that to Nine against the Daleks at the end of Bad Wolf, or Ten talking back to Lumic in the S2 Cyber episodes - not brilliant episodes, but he owned that scene.

It's a shame, because I hate not being excited about my favourite TV program. It's back to the old DVDs for me :(
Edited Date: 2010-04-25 11:15 pm (UTC)

Date: 2010-04-27 08:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jmatonak.livejournal.com
Maybe Matt Smith will be better after he settles into the role. And, the way this usually goes, sooner or later, there will be a Twelfth Doctor. :)

Date: 2010-04-27 06:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] suchnuch.livejournal.com
Oh, absolutely.

I've never been overly impressed with Moffat, though (and that's not even talking about him as a person). I must confess to being someone who reads any and all spoilers before actually viewing the episode, and when I got to 'Blink' I remember thinking '...That was it?'

I'm not saying he can't write some good stuff, but he has absolutely no clue about characterisation. I utterly, utterly loathe 'River Song', whose name I have to put in inverted commas because it looks so ridiculous otherwise. Ditto Reinette. I couldn't watch 'Eleventh Hour' with Amy and Rory without being reminded irrepressibly of Sally Sparrow and whatever-his-name-was. He's so bad at it that he totally screws over existing characters - including the Doctor. How does he even manage it?

No, Matt Smith just isn't selling it to me either. To me, Series 5 still feels like a tacky kid's spin-off. I can't stand the way he jerks around over the set, and his moments of supreme-dark-Time-Lordy-ness feel like a five-year-old having a hissy fit.

And I actually adored the colours of the Daleks (especially that tangerine one), but the actual design was just...no. Sort of like a blocky plasticine model. Ugh.

Date: 2010-04-27 08:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jmatonak.livejournal.com
I utterly, utterly loathe 'River Song', whose name I have to put in inverted commas because it looks so ridiculous otherwise. Ditto Reinette. I couldn't watch 'Eleventh Hour' with Amy and Rory without being reminded irrepressibly of Sally Sparrow and whatever-his-name-was. He's so bad at it that he totally screws over existing characters - including the Doctor. How does he even manage it?

Moffat's writing is a puzzler. I would have said boy-meets-girl stuff was in his toolbox, based on Coupling. I am easily distracted by pretty, so I liked Reinette (as a character) and Sally Sparrow. But the relationship in Girl in the Fireplace just seemed dumb... and then there's River. Oy.

I can appreciate the idea of River- somebody whose special knowledge is as annoying to the Doctor as the Doctor's is to the companions- but actual River? A little goes a long way. The name "River Song" was a good try, but it's still grating. It missed in exactly the wrong way.

Sort of like a blocky plasticine model. Ugh.

The S1-S4 Daleks looked to me like they were made out of metal. These new ones look like scaled up injection-molded toys. I keep expecting to see raised plastic seams on them from where the pieces were glued together.

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