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Everlong
QUOTE (Wife Of Rolex @ Apr 9 2010, 02:17 PM) *
She'd never acted before. And Matt was very cute with her on set, telling her she was brilliant and clever.


I'd watched Confidential on Sunday for the first time in a couple of years, the girl playing Amelia is Karen Gillan's cousin.
PrincessKate
The Demon Headmaster comes to Who!
Everlong
^ Nice!

Doctor Who: The Adventure Game

Free for download in June, looks alright for a freebie!


gulfcoast_highwayman
Good episode all round, but the 'coming next' bit made me more excited than is wise. British Daleks!!
PrincessKate
I read a few (non-spoilery) fan comments before I watched the episode - including one interesting one where they objected to the Doctor shouting at the Human race, and not knowing the answer to the problem, and thought that made the story rubbish.
I'm not an avid fan, but that would make this version of him closer to one of the original ones rather than Tennant's slightly irksome know it all attitude, would it?

I liked it anyway, he feels more volatile, more unknown whilst still being familiar. And the smilers were horrifying, though Terrence Hardiman was quite underused I think, they could have done more with his character, or used an actor with a less-documented career of playing perfectly sinister baddies.
Everlong
He didn't even take off his glasses. Sod.

Was a good episode. I like how Amy has got the doctor near enough sussed already.

Interesting shot at the end too. Those cracks are this series' Bad Wolf/Saxon.

Next week: Dalek episode written by Mark Gattis, nice.
maian
QUOTE (PrincessKate @ Apr 11 2010, 09:14 AM) *
I liked it anyway, he feels more volatile, more unknown whilst still being familiar. And the smilers were horrifying, though Terrence Hardiman was quite underused I think, they could have done more with his character, or used an actor with a less-documented career of playing perfectly sinister baddies.


I agree that they didn't give him much to do, but it seemed to me that his casting just served as an additional bit of misdirection in an episode which was all about tricking the audience into believing one thing when it was something else entirely: The woman in the red cloak must be the villain - she's not, so the men in the black cloaks who work for her must be the good guys - they don't really work for her, so Terrence Hardiman must be the villain etc.. Having him play that character really just played along with that idea.

That sense of mischief and misdirection was one of the things I liked most about a pretty enjoyable episode. Moffat's story was full of just enough twists and dead ends to keep me guessing without losing sight of the need to move Amy and The Doctor's relationship along. I was impressed by the economy with which the script - coupled with two great performers - was able to get through the usual new companion questions. They didn't spend ages rehashing information that we already knew, and when it came time to discuss The Doctor being the last of the Timelords the show didn't spend ages on it and Matt Smith didn't become maudlin and broody. It was nicely and deftly handled.

Amy really came into her own as a character this week, too. She was a real presence, rather than just someone for The Doctor to explain things to, and I really liked the way that the show had The Doctor convince her to follow the little girl and play the detective. There was also a strong emphasis on the importance of her making her own decisions; deciding to pick the lock on the tent, deciding to forget everything she sees in the voting booth, ultimately making the decision that saved the day. The episode did an awful lot to support the image of her as a strong character that emerged in the first episode.

The overall aesthetic of the episode was very interesting, too. It reminded me a bit of Brazil, or China Mieville's "The Scar".
Raven
I watched this when I got in last night, which with hindsight probably wasn't the best move as I found it to be a little flat and a lot of it didn't seem to make much sense.

Why where some of the "guards" half Smiler? For that matter, what was the point of the Smilers at? Why were all the tentacle things about? How did Amy get to record that warning to herself? etc

I did like some of the Doctor/Amy moments though.

As I say, I need to watch it again when I'm a bit more awake, it should make more sense then!
PrincessKate
QUOTE (Raven @ Apr 11 2010, 12:18 PM) *
Why where some of the "guards" half Smiler? For that matter, what was the point of the Smilers at? Why were all the tentacle things about? How did Amy get to record that warning to herself? etc

Actually now you mention it, I see what you mean, quite a lot of unexplained stuff which could have been elaborated on. The story could easily have been pitched over a few episodes (a la old-school Who).

The tentacles were just a part of the Star Whale though, weren't they?
I liked that explanation, it made sense how they missed Amy all those times, they weren't aiming for her, it was just pain.
maian
The implication I got was that Amy recorded the message to herself just before the truth about Starship U.K. was erased from her memory. That Queen Elizabeth X watched a similar message when she was taken to the Tower of London supports this idea.

As for the Smilers, I assumed that they were designed to keep the population scared enough not to discuss or question what was going on, as well as an automated system for controlling the feeding of people to the space whale. The half-human ones, assumingly, fulfill the same function, but allow for the government to send them around the place without scaring the people even more.

There wasn't a lot of elaboration, but I thought it all made sense.
Raven
QUOTE (PrincessKate @ Apr 11 2010, 12:27 PM) *
The tentacles were just a part of the Star Whale though, weren't they?


Yes, they were, but why would a space whale have lots of relatively small tentacles like that? Like the Smilers they just seemed to be their to scare, they didn’t seem to have any function past that.

QUOTE (maian @ Apr 11 2010, 02:12 PM) *
The implication I got was that Amy recorded the message to herself just before the truth about Starship U.K. was erased from her memory. That Queen Elizabeth X watched a similar message when she was taken to the Tower of London supports this idea.


But how - and why - did she do that? It makes sense for the Queen to have recorded a message to herself, just in case she needed convincing in the future, but surely it would have made more sense for Amy to remember what she had learnt so that she could better prevent the Doctor from having to make the choice she knew he would otherwise have to?! Okay, so we know she would have ended up being fed to the whale - but she didn't - so why did she choose the "forget" option, the truth wasn't that horrific, after all!

QUOTE
There wasn't a lot of elaboration, but I thought it all made sense.


I'm not sure it did, but I shall refrain from making further comments until I've watched it again!
maian
QUOTE (Raven @ Apr 11 2010, 02:25 PM) *
But how - and why - did she do that? It makes sense for the Queen to have recorded a message to herself, just in case she needed convincing in the future, but surely it would have made more sense for Amy to remember what she had learnt so that she could better prevent the Doctor from having to make the choice she knew he would otherwise have to?! Okay, so we know she would have ended up being fed to the whale - but she didn't - so why did she choose the "forget" option, the truth wasn't that horrific, after all!


What I took from it, based on the fact that more or less everyone decided to 'Forget' when given the option, was that the video she watched intentionally made the situation seem as horrific as possible, and gave them the same choice that the Doctor has at the end of the episode; either keep torturing a living creature relentlessly, or everyone dies (since they didn't know that the space whale had volunteered to help the humans, those would have been the only possibilities). Faced with that, Amy and everyone else chooses to forget.

As for Amy recording the video, I think that it's an option open to everyone, and as such the purpose of the video varies from person to person. The Queen's one, seeing as she has been through the same process several times, is to convince herself that the right thing to do for her people is to just keep forgetting, knowing full well that she would continue to make that choice every time she made it to the Tower.* In Amy's case, she would have thought that the only message she needs to give herself would be to stop The Doctor, which she didn't do because she didn't understand why she had to stop him, because he would not be able to abstain from getting involved, and would have to make an impossible choice based on what he knew.

*Thinking on it, this may be one of the main reasons for The Smilers' existence; to keep The Queen safe, and to ensure that she always finds her way to the Tower by perpetuating the idea that there is some huge conspiracy for her to uncover.
Everlong
Well, the doctor said that about 20 mins had been wiped from her memory, plenty of time to record that message, then hit forget.
maian
QUOTE (Everlong @ Apr 11 2010, 05:59 PM) *
Well, the doctor said that about 20 mins had been wiped from her memory, plenty of time to record that message, then hit forget.


Yeah, that's what my guesswork is largely based on.
Raven
Okay, fine, but where was the record button? tongue.gif
lola
On the console. You see it briefly when she first goes in.
Bloomeeney
The thing I liked about the 2nd Ep was the little nods towards other sci-fi (unless I am reading far too much into it!)

eg 1: Amy wandering around in her nightie and dressing gown - Hitchikers Guide anyone?

eg 2: The whole space whale carrying a country on it's back - hmm, that would be Discworld if I am not very much mistaken!

Might watch it again see if there are any more
Starscream`s Ghost
I'd also wager that the plot was a bit of an homage to an unmade story that was written by Pat Mills and John Wagner:

'The Song of the Space Whale'
blackcherry
I'm still enjoying this series smile.gif I am really looking forward to next week's episode as I like things set in wartime and it has Daleks!

I also seem to turn into an excited child whenever I watch or talk about Doctor Who.
Raven
QUOTE (Raven @ Apr 11 2010, 06:15 PM) *
Okay, fine, but where was the record button? tongue.gif


QUOTE (lola @ Apr 11 2010, 06:30 PM) *
On the console. You see it briefly when she first goes in.


Okay, proof - if ever it were needed - that:

1) I should not watch programs when dog tired and
2) I should not try to argue points after doing so!

I've just re-watched it.

Previously, I think I was getting the buttons mixed up between Amy's choice and the Queens (I was remembering it as there were only two buttons in each case).

It now makes a lot more sense, although I would still argue that there are some plot holes.

QUOTE (maian @ Apr 11 2010, 02:39 PM) *
As for Amy recording the video, I think that it's an option open to everyone, and as such the purpose of the video varies from person to person.


The thing that confused me is the way the scene is cut. Amy has all the images flashing in her eyes and she then immediately hits the forget button. As played on the screen it looks as though she sees the truth, panics and presses forget, so it is then a little confusing when she appears on the screen. When I originally watched it - in my sleep deprived state - I was expecting something really nasty to happen to the Doctor later in the story and that this message was one that Amy had somehow been able to record after the event. Part of me now wonders if that instantaneous pressing of the forget button is in part supposed to represent that she has forgotten what has happened – although thinking about it that doesn’t make much sense either . . .

I'm still not convinced about the role of the Smilers, or the Space Whale tentacles. The former I'm coming around to a bit more, but the latter just seemed to be there to add a bit more jeopardy (okay, so they also lead to the plot resolution, but I'm still not sure how Amy manages to pull all of the pieces together!).


Overall, I enjoyed it a lot more on second viewing though.

There were some nice touches; the scientist who gives the intro to the "what really happened" information was very well done; the bit where Amy gets shut out of the TARDIS; the subsequent lecture from the Doctor about non-interference that ends with Amy watching him trying to console the little girl and the scene where the Doctor tells her that he is the last of the Timelords - all very well played.

Matt Smith continues to impress; the way he delivers his lines, and the quirky way he articulates are more than selling me that he is the Doctor.

I'm not so sure about Karen Gillan, there are moments when I think - yes, she's good, but there are others where I'm not entirely sold.

The two do spark off of each other quite well, however, so I guess we will just have to wait and see how things develop.
Serafina_Pekkala
I wish they'd make the theme all electronic again. The increasingly more orchestral versions are awful awful.

They should get Brian Eno to do a version. Or Will from Goldfrapp.
omni
I would very much like to live in a world where there are giant space-faring whales that come to help children in need.

Wonderful episode.
m0r1arty
Photo from upcoming episode:



Ex-tea-man-ate!!

-m0r
Everlong
Please let them ask if anyone wants tea!

WOULD-YOU-LIKE-SOME-TEA?

OR-PERHAPS-SOME-COFFEEEEE?
gulfcoast_highwayman
It's one of Victor Lewis Smith's gay Daleks. surely?
Serafina_Pekkala
QUOTE (gulfcoast_highwayman @ Apr 13 2010, 08:31 AM) *
It's one of Victor Lewis Smith's gay Daleks. surely?


I still think of those.

White Wee Wee.

Ew. wink.gif
Raven
Unless you want this week's episode to be spoiled for you, avoid this weeks Radio Times! (I've not seen it myself, I've just heard that it is rather spoilery).
Henry Krinkle
I kinda liked it, although nothing like as much as The Eleventh Hour.
It felt like there was way too much going on - which is pretty much what everyone else is saying. Smilers, tentacles, recorded messages and forget buttons - part of me thinks this episode would have benefited from a longer running time to explain things, and part of me thinks the audience is more than capable of filling those blanks with their own imagination, and that the story probably wasn't interesting enough to hold my attention for any longer than it did.

I am greatly enjoying the logic in the new episodes, this week Amy making the connection on how to solve the end game dilemma. Some of the more deus ex machina-ey endings of other episodes left me frustrated and lacking in faith that the Doctor can't just get out of any problem with something we've never seen until now. Whilst I might not have been thoroughly entertained or enthralled this week, I at least admired that it made sense where it counted.
To me, it didn't matter that I didn't quite know the origin of the Smilers, or how the specific events came to be. It just mattered that it wasn't solved by magic or ill explained technology.

It did feel a wee bit Doctor-lite though. He didn't really do an awful lot in this episode save for noticing the plugs weren't connected inside the electric boxes, the water didn't vibrate, that the floor was a tongue, and that he would be very angry at having to make a whale brain dead. But perhaps every Doctor needs to let his companion be the hero sometimes. He needs to be fallible. He needs someone to correct him, to remind us that it can go wrong.

Also, am I genuinely the only person who loves these new titles?
maian
QUOTE (Henry Krinkle @ Apr 13 2010, 11:40 AM) *
Also, am I genuinely the only person who loves these new titles?


I love the titles themselves, in terms of the smoky wormhole effect, but the theme tune hasn't quite won me over yet.
Everlong
QUOTE (Henry Krinkle @ Apr 13 2010, 11:40 AM) *
Also, am I genuinely the only person who loves these new titles?


I like the visuals, not so much the tune, but it's a grower.
Henry Krinkle
Good. Lets all start a gang or facebook page.
Serafina_Pekkala
And shag each others bums.

Fnar.

The tune is terrible. The wormhole is okay - as they go. At least it isn't the Eye of Sauron again.
Raven
I may have said this before, but it took me a while to realise the opening credits had started when watching the first episode.

The music is a very different arrangement from the previous versions, but I think I'm starting to come around to it. I don't think it's going to become my favourite version ever, but I can live with it.

The graphics are okay, not sure about the lightening or clouds, but if we get 40-odd minutes of good story I'm not too worried what it looks like.
curtinparloe
QUOTE (omni @ Apr 13 2010, 03:41 AM) *
I would very much like to live in a world where there are giant space-faring whales that come to help children in need.


It might happen now Wogan's off the radio.
Serafina_Pekkala
You are more forgiving than I.

I heard the original Delia Derbyshire version t'other day. Reminded me of the current shitness.
gulfcoast_highwayman
The music makes me chair dance. I like it.
Raven
QUOTE (Serafina_Pekkala @ Apr 13 2010, 03:51 PM) *
You are more forgiving than I.

I heard the original Delia Derbyshire version t'other day. Reminded me of the current shitness.


Yes, the original is pretty much still the best, but I also like the Peter Howell(?) version from the Davison years, and Murray Gold's full orchestral version that first aired on The Christmas Invasion.
Serafina_Pekkala
Also - the end version without orchestral swoops is much better. Although when the wind tunnel turns from blue to reddish, it somewhat resembles an endoscopy.

It's the swoops I don't like. Too much decoratation. The original melody is strong enough and doesn't need lacey bits.

Seeing the first Matt episode again was even better - and I can't wait to see some of the episodes. I wonder who Helen McCrory is playing in her Catherine De Medici garb? She is always good value and as a (possible) sexy vampire - couldn't pick a better role for her. The Vampires of Venice one looks just my kind of thing.
Jon 79
QUOTE (Everlong @ Apr 13 2010, 11:49 AM) *
I like the visuals, not so much the tune, but it's a grower.


I agree. I bitched about the tune after the first episode to all who would listen, but it is sounding better the more I hear it.
But then I guess that's cos it is the Dr Who theme, and I reckon the Dr Who theme would sound alright even if it was a bag-piped/belched/RnB* version.

*delete as inappropriate.
Raven
Matt Smith & Co. in New York.

You really should be going Widdy!
Wife Of Rolex
I noticed less of a music invasion in last week's episode. I hope this continues through the rest of the series.

It was interesting to see the end of episode 2 flow into episode 3's story rather than end and then have a trailer for 'Next Time...'. If this is a pattern of future episodes it'll bind the episodes together in a way previous series didn't manage with the one-off story format it's had since 2005. Series 5, so far anyway, seems to have more of a concept album approach. Before an episode is finished you're already drawn into the next one and so on. Like...Lost. Or 24.

Stephen Moffat clearly likes his dvd boxsets.
Everlong
QUOTE (Everlong @ Apr 13 2010, 08:06 AM) *
Please let them ask if anyone wants tea!

WOULD-YOU-LIKE-SOME-TEA?


laugh.gif Close enough!

Was a good episode. Ending felt a bit sudden, but this episode is setting something massive up. The Spitfires vs Dalek Saucer dogfight was quite cool.

Really liked the Bracewell guy too.

Most interesting though is Amy not remembering the Daleks or the earth being stolen, wonder what's going on there! We see the ol' crack again too, stalking them!
Starscream`s Ghost
I enjoyed it a lot.

And I LOVE the new Daleks. They remind me a lot of the movie versions.
Everlong
QUOTE (Starscream`s Ghost @ Apr 17 2010, 09:36 PM) *
I enjoyed it a lot.

And I LOVE the new Daleks. They remind me a lot of the movie versions.


Indeed, they are pretty old school, tall bulky fuckers too, more imposing.
maian
I thoroughly enjoyed that episode. I don't think it had quite the impact of The Eleventh Hour, and it wasn't as creepy as The Beast Below, but it was very good fun.

Things I liked most about it (in no particular order):
- The appearance of the new Daleks, particularly their decision to kill the "unclean" ones that had brought them to life. The use of the term "Master Race" in an episode set during WWII was also a nice way of linking the Daleks to their real-life inspiration.
- Bracewell, though I think that may be because I very rarely get to hear my name said so often on television. I thought he was a really likable character and his conflict about his identity, whilst hurried, felt believable and really grounded the idea of deactivating the bomb by having him experience human emotions.
- The fact that the Daleks weren't wiped out at the end. The decision to keep killing them and bringing them back was one of the most frutsrating aspects of their treatment under RTD, I'm glad that Moffat seems inclined to have them as returning villains rather than slasher-movie boogeymen that just keep popping back up every time that you kill them.
- Like last week, the episode hinged on The Doctor having to make a difficult decision, one which could not have an out-and-out positive outcome. This series really seems to be about establishing the fallibility and humanity of The Doctor (His weakness is his compassion, but that is what will always separate him from the beings that he fights)
- And again, Amy wasn't just window dressing. She came up with a solution and played a major role in helping to save the day. It felt like they were a real team in this episode.
- The Dalek "Victory" poster. It's mostly because my dissertation was on the iconography of propaganda, but I always enjoy seeing the visual language of posters used for other purposes. It captured something very essential about that particular brand of propaganda material.

It was a bit creaky in place, the opening 10 minutes or so, whilst interesting since the show went to great lengths to frustrate The Doctor, did drag for me, but otherwise I thought it was good.

QUOTE (Everlong @ Apr 17 2010, 09:24 PM) *
Most interesting though is Amy not remembering the Daleks or the earth being stolen, wonder what's going on there! We see the ol' crack again too, stalking them!


I thought that was very interesting, too. It seems like the cracks are distorting space and time, changing reality around them. (Amy grew up with a crack in her wall and doesn't know what the Daleks are, the Daleks show up in WWII where there is also a crack etc.) I'm really intrigued by them and wonder how the seires as a whole will progress.
PrincessKate
QUOTE (maian @ Apr 17 2010, 11:44 PM) *
I thought that was very interesting, too. It seems like the cracks are distorting space and time, changing reality around them. (Amy grew up with a crack in her wall and doesn't know what the Daleks are, the Daleks show up in WWII where there is also a crack etc.) I'm really intrigued by them and wonder how the seires as a whole will progress.

It looks like that will tie up with Rory becoming a nurse in 1990, potentially?
I'm excited by this plot.

Not entirely enamoured with this episode, but the Confidential after it was superb - I could probably watch Mark Gatiss talking enthusiastically about things all night and never tire of it. The emphasis was very much on his personal interest in the story and his research processes, instead of half an hour of the design team going "We were lucky that we found this fantasic old disused quarry/prison/wheelie bin in Cardiff which we could easily dress up to look like a dying planet/dungeon/whore's boudoir".
curtinparloe
My favourite so far. I felt like the Doctor messed up, as he must have realised the daleks were going to set up us the bomb anyway. I can only guess he was playing for time in order to deactivate Bracewell, but I'm not so sure about that.
Still, the space spitfires and dalek charladies were inspired!

Good work from Mark Gatiss.

EDIT: Glen, according to Gatiss, they were deliberately like the old movies. I thought they were a bit hunchbacked, but they might grow on me.
NiteFall
I have to say I really like the United Daleks of Benetton. They seem a lot more imposing and threatening, rather than being loomed over by anyone of average height.
PrincessKate
QUOTE (NiteFall @ Apr 17 2010, 11:57 PM) *
I have to say I really like the United Daleks of Benetton. They seem a lot more imposing and threatening, rather than being loomed over by anyone of average height.

The reasoning for that on Confidential was really dumb, I thought.
I mean, it made sense, but it was still dumb.
Zoe
Loved this week's, even with the very silly parts I found it rather moving. You could tear it to shreds if you focused on specifics, but the story as a whole more than made up for its holes (Gatiss' most convincing perhaps)

Heavily indebted to one of my favourite Philip K Dick short stories, but allusions of that high quality are only to be welcomed. It's very reflective of the fact his series already has a very different feel to Davies' reign. Focus on story, solid SF plots, great performances that are moving not mawkish, an unpredictable Doctor and some occasionally really gorgeous looking visuals mixed with flashes of invention.

Quality stuff.

Oh! And I'm really hoping Amy not knowing the Daleks means Moffat's found some way to undo the stupid 'everybody knows aliens exist now' thing. I hated that.

(Read 'Imposter' by Philip K Dick)
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