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15 hours ago, Miguel Sanchez said:

She's extremely ordinary! She's from a multi-racial, irregular home, she's a lesbian, she's got an accent and she's got a boy's name. Her outfit has clearly been designed meticulously to look completely random and spontaneous. She's as ordinary as it gets.

I did enjoy her saying the Doctor runs like a penguin with its arse on fire, so at least she might have decent patter.

The reason I've stopped paying as much attention since about midway through Matt Smith relates to the point you're making though. Since it started the companions and stories happened in real places to real people - Rose, Martha and Donna all had lives and families and a real world that were affected by whichever aliens came in to invade each week. The Ponds lived in a village which wasn't real and Clara may as well have been a figment of the Doctor's imagination.

This is fine, but at some point in the last decade all BBC dramas started looking identical. I don't know if they're all filmed in the same place or by the same people but the whole thing looks like a very deliberate TV show. It doesn't matter where an episode of this is set. It could be on a housing estate, a city, a ship, literally anywhere else in the universe, and it all just looks the same, so much so that it looks unreal. The Ponds and Clara at least fit with that since they barely seemed real either but whatever's going on with the filming makes the show a lot less engaging to me than it was before it went to HD.

It is hard to disagree here. For me the rebooted Doctor Who peaked with Matt Smith. It amazed me that the team that made those great episodes then went on to catastrophically shit the bed with Peter Capaldi's series. His ones with Clara are very poor in comparison. 

My memory of his time is that he was a bit let down by poor writing and overly convoluted storylines. It got better in the series with Pearl Mackie as it was essentially a mini-reboot back to the original thesis of a stranger taking a girl on an adventure. Capaldi was let down quite a bit here. 

You think this is bad? Crack on into the Jodie Whittaker episodes. The writing of her series of the show makes Capaldi-era Who writing seem like The Sopranos in comparison. 

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7 hours ago, scottsdad said:

It is hard to disagree here. For me the rebooted Doctor Who peaked with Matt Smith. It amazed me that the team that made those great episodes then went on to catastrophically shit the bed with Peter Capaldi's series. His ones with Clara are very poor in comparison. 

My memory of his time is that he was a bit let down by poor writing and overly convoluted storylines. It got better in the series with Pearl Mackie as it was essentially a mini-reboot back to the original thesis of a stranger taking a girl on an adventure. Capaldi was let down quite a bit here. 

You think this is bad? Crack on into the Jodie Whittaker episodes. The writing of her series of the show makes Capaldi-era Who writing seem like The Sopranos in comparison. 

First Capaldi was good. Second was just... there. Third... I'm ten minutes into episode two, who knows.

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Wouldn't want him back as the main guy. It's always interesting to see how a new Doctor does, and the regular change has become part of the show's appeal. Deciding "we can't think of a new way to take the show so we are just gonna go back to what we were doing ten years ago" would be an admission of failure and not bode well for the programme's future.

Get a new Doctor. Preferably, someone brilliant. Write great episodes for them. 

To clarify: I've no problem whatsoever with Tennant and/or other Doctors coming back for the 60th Anniversary episode. Those stories are the right place for wallowing in nostalgia.

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1 hour ago, Bully Wee Villa said:

Deciding "we can't think of a new way to take the show so we are just gonna go back to what we were doing ten years ago" would be an admission of failure and not bode well for the programme's future.

Like bringing back Russell T. Davies as showrunner?

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16 hours ago, GordonD said:

Like bringing back Russell T. Davies as showrunner?

Be fair to RTD, he has gone on to make some big new TV shows since and has matured. I hope we get a better version of his time. 

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9 minutes ago, scottsdad said:

Be fair to RTD, he has gone on to make some big new TV shows since and has matured. I hope we get a better version of his time. 

I wasn't complaining, just pointing out that some people might see it as a backward step. And he was responsible for bringing the show back in the first place, for which we should be grateful.

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I've finished watching the Capaldi episodes.

To start with, I liked them. It was a change to go from skinny, arm waving person in a suit to... well, anything else, but it was a good change. Miserable Scottish guy not understanding the people around him while simultaneously knowing he's far superior to all of them really resonated with me for some reason. The first series of his kept this up well. Someone in this thread said they liked him because he made the character really feel like an alien, and I'd go along with that.

Second series had that fucking guitar. And had a weird, sudden yet drawn out death for Clara who by this point had actually gained a personality. They fucked up her leaving (and I know she swithered about leaving the show which is why) and I ended up tuning out a bit as a result. Maisie Williams' character was terrible. How bad does someone like this have to be written to make John Barrowman preferable? The lack of a decent series arc started letting the show down here too. "The Pandorica Opens" and "Silence Will Fall" and "A Good Man Goes To War" and "The Name Of The Doctor" all turn out to be nonsense he deals with instantly when it catches up with him, but there's a sense of something worthwhile constantly being in the background that they can't escape from. Here you have a rip-off of the main plot of The X-Files which is explained away almost as pathetically as it was first brought up.

Third series started promisingly with a return to the standard formula as scottsdad noted, and I already said at the time the reason I felt less connected over time since the switch to Matt Smith was a lack of grounding of anything that was going on. This series started out well by attempting to make Bill a real person but then that just sort of stopped. The same problem comes back here for me, there are no consequences to what's going on.

Rose, Martha, Donna, all real people, who live in the real world. It's the real earth that's being destroyed by Daleks or Cybermen and although the Doctor's going to cry about how they always win and always leave him with nothing, they aren't. He's going to win and send them all to another dimension, but I'm still invested in it because there's some relation to a world I understand. Look at Wilfred crying because they're rounding up the foreign people when London got nuked. This actually means something. 

That the third series did a three part episode about some shadowy cabal taking over the world and running everyone's lives only to not make it real or tangible in any way sums up why I'm just finding it more difficult to watch than I did. And even then, what the f**k were those things supposed to be? "We need an alien race that takes over the world and changes all of human history." "I know, we'll put a poncho over a corpse and rig their gaff with a bunch of camgirl fibre optics, that'll look convincing."

Couple that with the extremely clumsy references to things going on in the world ("All the fake news is coming from the pyramid!" and "They charge you for the air you breathe until you can't pay then they don't care" were the highlights, although the clumsy attempts at shoehorning in Timelords regenerating into women was even worse) and with what I've heard about the Whittaker episodes and I'll watch, but I get the feeling it'll be through my fingers. 

That said, I do like Missy. 

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6 hours ago, Miguel Sanchez said:

I can't go Northern accents. 

This big blue lad with all the teeth on his face is about the most horrifying thing I've ever seen. 

If they’re not from the south of England the accent will inevitably be mentioned 

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On 31/01/2022 at 10:53, scottsdad said:

Fair summary @Miguel Sanchez

There were some absolute gems in the Capaldi lot (and some utter dross). 

Looking forward to seeing how the Chibnall era drains you. 

Less than five minutes into the Rosa Parks one. Racism is bad! Who knew. I had no idea.

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1 hour ago, Miguel Sanchez said:

Less than five minutes into the Rosa Parks one. Racism is bad! Who knew. I had no idea.

The episode set during the partition of India is the only good one that series. 

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