Sci-Fi Month

Sci-Fi Month 2015: Falling Out Of Love With The Doctor

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This post is part of Sci-Fi Month 2015, a month long event to celebrate science fiction hosted by myself and Over the Effing Rainbow. You can view the schedule here, follow the event on Twitter via the official @SciFiMonth Twitter account, or the hashtag #RRSciFiMonth.

Back in 2013, I posted about my love for Doctor Who. Since then, the series has gone through many changes, most notably a new Doctor. The Doctor is now in his twelfth regeneration, ignoring the War Doctor, played by Peter Capaldi.

And since this change, I’ve come to realise I’m really not enjoying the show as much as I used to.

Gone are the days when I would eagerly await Saturday evenings, a brand new episode full of adventure. For this series and the last, I’ve not watched a single episode as it aired. I’ve caught up online, sometimes weeks after airing.

The series just does not feel like Doctor Who any more. An over-arching plot has replaced the new monster every week element that it used to have. To me, the series has almost lost its sense of fun. The episodes don’t feel like adventures. The opening two-parter of the current series was one of the dullest episodes of the show that I have ever watched. And I am so, so bored of the Daleks. They are not scary, and they never will be. But they keep going back to them.

Me too Clara, me too.

Me too Clara, me too.

There are moments where Peter Capaldi feels like the Doctor: that childishness, his inquisitiveness, his social awkwardness. But ultimately, I don’t really like the Twelfth Doctor. He pities himself, and is halfway to giving up on everyone and everything. This is not me criticising Capaldi’s acting in any way, but the producers/writers etc and how they have chosen to represent the Doctor.

However, I absolutely love the Mistress – Michelle Gomez is just fabulous. She pretty much captured my heart as the crazy staff liaison Sue White in Green Wing, and it was clear she would do a fantastic job on Doctor Who. If we can’t have River Song, at least we’ve got Missy.

I’m not giving up on the series, not just yet. It has meant so much to me that I still want to cling to it, hoping that it returns to the good ol’ Doctor Who I remember and love.

Do you watch Doctor Who? Are you enjoying the current series as much as the past ones?

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Recap

A Trip Through Time And Space

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Warning: this post will be image heavy!

On Saturday 21st June 2014, me and my friend Kerry went on an adventure through time and space… we took our space transport/Kerry’s car across the galaxy/Severn Bridge, passing many obstacles/the £6.40 toll on the way – until we finally reached the strange land known as… Cardiff. After a long and arduous journey through the cosmos/down the M4, we came upon this terrifying sight:

Daleks Ahead!
DALEKS AHEAD!

Following the signs warning us of Daleks (perhaps a foolish choice?) we eventually reached our destination: the Doctor Who Experience in Porth Teigr, Cardiff. Words cannot describe how happy it made me to see more and more people sporting their Doctor Who t-shirts and costumes as we got closer and closer. As we got there quite early, we decided to have a browse in the shop first. It was actually a LOT smaller than we expected, and much more reasonably priced than the Harry Potter Studio Tour shop, although some items were still a bit pricey. Anyway, when we finally queued up, we were told that there was no photography in the first bit of the tour, which has an interactive element to it.

Eeek!
Amazing artwork in the lobby. That you’ll probably forget about.

I don’t want to tell you much about the interactive part of the tour because I want it to be a surprise for anyone who is planning on going. However, if you don’t mind spoilers, then click under the cut to read about my favourite part. [spoiler]One room was pitch black as we entered – then suddenly some of the lights came on really quickly, and there were a couple of Weeping Angels littered around us. Then the lights flickered and the Angels had ‘moved’! AHHH I WAS ACTUALLY TERRIFIED. It was so well done![/spoiler] Overall, the exhibition was actually quite a bit smaller than we’d expected, but it still had a decent amount of props and costumes. Now to share some photos!

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Some of the amazing costumes on display – a mix of original and replica.

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The first and fourth TARDIS consoles.

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That oh so familiar sign, and the infamous scarf!

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Creepy Peg Dolls, and the Face of Boe.

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OOD! and the Silence – wait, what? What was I talking about?

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I made a new friend, he didn’t like my offer of a Jammie Dodger though; got my eye on you…

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I was strangely disappointed by this Weeping Angel… there was only one.

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Genuinely sad that I couldn’t go inside.

The whole tour and experience didn’t actually last too long: we were in there for about an hour and a half (basically as long as it takes to drive there), but I suppose you can spend as long as you like in the main exhibition bit. So after leaving the experience, we decided to do some sightseeing around Cardiff. Spoilers for Torchwood below.

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The fan-made shrine to Ianto Jones in Mermaid Quay (by the ‘official’ Torchwood entrance), with the plaque the BBC put up afterwards.

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The secret Torchwood entrance by the Millennium Centre!

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It was a gorgeous day, so we finished off with some sight-seeing of the city, including the Millennium Centre, Mermaid Quay, Cardiff Bay and an open top guided tour bus!

Have you visited the Doctor Who Experience?

Sci-Fi Month, Thoughts

Sci-Fi Month: The Last of the Timelords – Thoughts on Doctor Who

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Well hello there, dear readers! For my first proper Sci-Fi Month post, I want to share my love of Doctor Who with you all. I’ve only been watching the show since 2009, several years after they rebooted it, but once I watched one episode I had to watch them all. It’s been love ever since. I plan on discussing my favourite things about the show, and would love to hear yours too! I will try and avoid spoilers where possible. Don’t forget to check out the schedule for the rest of today’s posts. You can also Tweet about the event using the hashtag #RRSciFiMonth.
 

Why do I love Doctor Who?

Because it’s just so wonderfully varied and fun, and as well as all the great adventures the Doctor and his companions go on, the characters are just so well-built and I just… I just can’t explain it! I sat down, watched one episode and literally did not stop until I’d finished them all. I marathoned series one to four in a couple of weeks during my first year of university, then watched from series five onwards as they aired. Time and space travel have always fascinated me, so that’s a big part of it, but I think all the little elements of the show come together to make one amazing big thing. Plus, you know, there’s an archaeologist. And it sure knows how to tug at the heartstrings one minute, and have you roaring with laughter the next. In three, very fangirl-ish words: all the feels.
 
I’ve also met one Doctor, and seen another cast member in person (revealed below)!
 

My favourite episodes

  • The Impossible Planet/The Satan Pit (series two, episodes eight and nine) – a brilliant two-parter, the Doctor and Rose land on a base of a crew who are drilling through a planet for resources. However, they dig too deep and awaken ancient evil.
  • 42 (series three, episode seven) – you’ll notice a trend here, I kind of love all the episodes where a small group of humans is stuck out somewhere in space, and then something starts killing them off or threatening them – they’re the scariest to me. In this particular episode, Martha and the Doctor only have forty-two minutes to save themselves and the crew, as the ship is hurtling into an alien star.
  • Blink (series three, episode ten) – the first time we meet the Weeping Angels, the scariest Doctor Who villain out there. The Doctor is actually barely in this one, but it’s so creepy and eerie and somehow classically Who, despite the lack of Doctor. This episode features Carey Mulligan as Sally Sparrow.
  • Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead (series four, episodes eight and nine) – I love my two-parters! This is the first time we meet the brilliant River Song, and also the Vashda Nerada – invisible, flesh eating swarms who live in the shadows. Hey, who turned out the lights?!
  • The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone (series five, episodes four and five) – more Weeping Angels! More terrifying scenes! More River Song!
  • The Waters of Mars (special episode) – this is my favourite Doctor Who special. It’s another Alien-style humans living on a base and being picked off one by one type episode, and this time there’s something in the water. This one is preeeeetty creepy…
  • I also think Vincent and the Doctor (series five, episode ten) deserves a special mention for making me blub like a baby when the Doctor takes Vincent van Gogh to the future and shows him how much people love his work. His face at that moment makes me weep.

My favourite companion

This is a really difficult choice, because I kind of love them all for different reasons, but if I had to choose one it would be…

Donna Noble. Because unlike Rose, she’s not in love with the Doctor. Unlike Martha, she’s not super clever and able to bring some change to the world. Unlike Amy, her life hasn’t centered around him, and unlike Clara, the Doctor’s life is not centered around her. Donna is just a temp from Chiswick, a normal (albeit rather mouthy) woman, with a brilliant sense of humour and a kind heart. And what happened to her… well, it wasn’t fair.
 

My favourite non-companion character

I suppose there aren’t all that many to choose from really, at least regular characters. But hands down, it is definitely…
 

River Song. Professor of archaeology (YES) and all round bad-ass, what other character would get away with uttering the above words on prime-time family television? I love River’s sass, her sarcasm and wit, and her ability to look after herself in any situation. Her flirting with the Doctor is wonderful.
 
And I’ve seen her in real life! I was on an excavation in 2010, and she visited with her daughter. I got a sneaky stalker photo of when she went up in the cherry picker to look over the site, but it’s not very good… A couple of people actually got photos with her, but not me. Boo!

My favourite villains

I expect it’s rather obvious by now that the villains I find most terrifying in Doctor Who are…

The Weeping Angels. These horrors pose as statues, and can only move when not being watched. Once they touch you, they send you back in time to… live yourself to death! (as the Doctor puts it…) and feed off of the energy that you leave behind. Okay, it doesn’t sound scary, but when you see these things in action they are terrifying. Although in one episode they actually start snapping necks. Here’s a cool fan-made trailer that someone put together, using various clips of the four episodes the Angels are featured in.
 
Oh, and just remember. Don’t blink. Don’t even blink. Blink and you’re dead. Don’t turn your back. Don’t turn away. And don’t blink.
 

My favourite songs from the soundtrack

Yay, more playlists! I’ve put together a list of my favourite songs from the soundtrack of the show. Warning: may cause sudden weepiness in Whovians.
 

What are your favourite things about Doctor Who? If you’d like to do a similar post, please share your link in the comments below!