Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

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Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby HGervais » Sun Dec 27, 2009 11:56 pm

Okay...so part one is broadcast & out there. Speculation and some assumed possible spoilers ahead. Questions & thoughts....question 1: What is Wilf? Is he a sleeper time-lord? If that is so, does that mean Donna is part time-lord and thus can handle that part of herself which mixed with the Doctor? Since the exposition aliens noted the Master set the machine for a human template and since Donna was not affected by the process something would clearly appear to be up with her. Question 2: It will knock four times...a time-lord hearts beat 4 times....is the drum beat a way the time-lords have used the Master to bring about their return? Could they be the larger threat of the piece?....the real Big Bad if you will. Was the time-lord covering her face at the end the Woman who has been communicating with Wilf? Did Wilf fight in the Time War or was he put in place by the Woman? What does a return of the time-lords and possibly Gallifrey mean to the series? Could it see a return to the fugitive status The Doctor had to contend with in his earlier incarnations? I have been saying for some time that what we have seen in the press about these specials and those first photos of the new series have caused me to come to the conclusion that we are getting some major re-set of the series and the universe the show operates within. At this point, I'm feeling pretty good about that assessement. We will all know in a week.
Things I liked about this episode...anything with Wilf & the Doctor. Any moment where Tennant was not required to run or grit his teeth. That scene in the dinner between Crippins & Tennant was golden fried acting gold. The Ood. Brian Cox's voice as the elder Ood. Timothy Dalton getting all worked up and spitting. That quiet scene between Tennant & Simm where the Master realizes the Doctor can hear the drums as well. Euros Lyn's direction was pretty strong through out the episode.
Things I didn't like...the Master's ressurrection. Awful and I think RTD knew it as well. It was rubbish and he moved away from it pretty quickly. Bye bye Lucy Saxon. The preachy writing about how we consume & consume & consume. The aliens who served little purpose except to explain something the Doctor should have recognized in an instand. The father & daughter time....why? Walking, and very boring, plot devices.
Still, the good outweighed the bad, at least for me and I'm really curious as to how RTD leaves the show for Moffatt & Matt Smith come series one...as Moffatt has been referring to it.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby the5thghostbuster » Tue Dec 29, 2009 10:07 am

A strong episode, but flawed opening twenty minutes. The Master's ressurection made little sense and seemed to be something to just get it out of the way when really, it should have been an entire episode's worth of story. I am starting to get the feeling Tennant's final would have been better served as a week long event ala TORCHWOOD CHILDREN OF EARTH.

However, you are right about Cribbin's and Tennant. Those are some magnificent performances and the best scenes of the episode. Diddo Simm, who's is just fantastic as the Master having finally lost it. And the return of a certain group of then Time Lords, led by James Bond? Hell yes!

My guess for the next week are as follows: the lady in white has been manipulating Wilf's Time Line all along, hence his importance. Donna, I'm guessing, is not transformed because she is still, in part, no longer fully human, even if the Doctor Donna was fully repressed.

As for the Time Lords, I believe that either A) they are in the Master's head, and are looking to trigger a MASS world wide regeneration to bring them out, or B) the void, and are connected to the Master in some way in order to trigger their return. I don't think the entire Time Lord race will return. Rather, a select few will make their way out into the universe again, some to try and rebuild their world, others to just freely roam about (come back to us Meddling Monk!).

My main hope, with the one clip from next weeks episode, is a quick scene with Paul McGann. RTD has the moment, use it!
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Eric Profancik » Tue Dec 29, 2009 12:32 pm

Spitting Tim Dalton? Gross. Didn't like that at all.
Matrix Master? Very odd. What's up with that?

Overall - tons of exposition and I wasn't fully engrossed. Love The Doctor and Wilf moments but will hold off total judgment until Saturday night.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Dark Knight » Tue Dec 29, 2009 6:49 pm

The first part of these two-parters usually try and set up the big ending. Because of this they sometimes drag in spots or try to speed up others to get to the main story in part two.
This, I think, was a much better "Part One". Sure it had slow moments and ones that seemed rushed but the moments like the Wilf/Doctor ones made it a bit more special.
And because of the discussions about the Time Lords return and what's happening to Donna and what the Master and Wilf has to do with all of this just proves it did it's job.
It peaked everyones interest enough to want to see what the hell happens in "Part Two". Oh, and how Tennant transforms into Smith.
A McGann appearance would be sweet, but don't see it happening unless they do some kind of flashbacks of the previous Doctors thing.
I'm just glad BBC America showed it the day after it was aired in the UK. Watched the "Directors Cut" via "BBC America On Demand". Uncut and only three very short commercial segments.
I also watched a preview of "Demons" on demand as well last night. That starts Jan. 2nd on BBC America. It was the first half of the first episode. It seemed OK. Not great.
Looks like there were only six episodes done and no second season ordered.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby HGervais » Tue Dec 29, 2009 11:14 pm

Demons is pretty awful.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Dark Knight » Wed Dec 30, 2009 5:38 pm

HGervais wrote:Demons is pretty awful.

By watching that half of an episode, I thought that's the way it was going. Then when I read that it just had six episodes I kind of figured it wasn't going to be that great.
Kind of reminded me of a lame (not the good ones like BSG) SyFy series with British actors.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby HGervais » Wed Dec 30, 2009 11:15 pm

Six to eight episodes is pretty common for Brit TV and the show got a little better as it went along but yeah, pretty cringe worthy for the most part.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby HGervais » Fri Jan 01, 2010 11:40 pm

I won't say much since most have not seen it yet but I will say that while it is in many ways a great summation for everything that is right & wrong with the way RTD has handled the show by the time "the moment" arrives, the show delivers. The way the prophecy plays out is absolutely heartbreaking. Oh and I think Matt Smith is going to be great. More tomorrow when everyone else is more or less caught up.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Eric Profancik » Sat Jan 02, 2010 8:34 pm

Initial thought: That was underwhelming.

Outside of "the moment" I felt it was another missed opportunity. To wrap things up so quickly, quickly fixing the return of the Time Lords and not letting that explain the "reboot," I walked away wanting more. While I liked the goodbyes, they really weren't necessary. Those minutes could have been used in the story itself. Nonetheless, let's see what the new Docs got. I wonder why they won't make him ginger?
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby HGervais » Sat Jan 02, 2010 9:16 pm

RTD has never been good at structure but excels in character based dialogue which is why I think this pretty much summed up his run on the show. Lots of great little bits and touching moments that don't hang together as a whole. The goodbyes didn't bother me and the one with Verity Newman at the book signing especially got me teary eyed. I think the Claire Bloom character that appeared to Wilf was pretty clearly Donna in a future version. To that end I guess I liked how RTD left the door open for Moffat as far as Donna & the Time Lords are concerned. I for one would be really happy to see Wilfred Mott again. Bernard Cribbins owned these two specials. My main complaint with these two-parts, and in fact with all the specials and with a lot of Tennant's run in general is how much self-pity the Doctor displays. And if this special proved anything to me it is that when it comes to Doctor Who proper we would have all been better off if Davies had taken on some co-writers during the run. Gareth Roberts & especially Phil Ford with "The Waters of Mars" did wonders for Davies. As noted Davies is a great dialogue guy but he is also a great big ideas guy....he just needs the help of another writer to help shape & mold those great ideas into a coherent whole.
If I got anything off of Matt Smith's two minutes of screen time is that this will be a Doctor who is a bit mad...shades of 1st & 4th versions but also one with a spirit of adventure & fun...3rd Doctor. We will see. Bearing that in mind I loved the preview for Matt Smith's Doctor. Hot Scottish redhead, River Song, Daleks, hot vampires and was that a Ice Warrior I spied? Four short months that will seem awfully long.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby the5thghostbuster » Sat Jan 02, 2010 11:06 pm

HGervais wrote:RTD has never been good at structure but excels in character based dialogue which is why I think this pretty much summed up his run on the show. Lots of great little bits and touching moments that don't hang together as a whole. The goodbyes didn't bother me and the one with Verity Newman at the book signing especially got me teary eyed. I think the Claire Bloom character that appeared to Wilf was pretty clearly Donna in a future version. To that end I guess I liked how RTD left the door open for Moffat as far as Donna & the Time Lords are concerned. I for one would be really happy to see Wilfred Mott again. Bernard Cribbins owned these two specials. My main complaint with these two-parts, and in fact with all the specials and with a lot of Tennant's run in general is how much self-pity the Doctor displays. And if this special proved anything to me it is that when it comes to Doctor Who proper we would have all been better off if Davies had taken on some co-writers during the run. Gareth Roberts & especially Phil Ford with "The Waters of Mars" did wonders for Davies. As noted Davies is a great dialogue guy but he is also a great big ideas guy....he just needs the help of another writer to help shape & mold those great ideas into a coherent whole.
If I got anything off of Matt Smith's two minutes of screen time is that this will be a Doctor who is a bit mad...shades of 1st & 4th versions but also one with a spirit of adventure & fun...3rd Doctor. We will see. Bearing that in mind I loved the preview for Matt Smith's Doctor. Hot Scottish redhead, River Song, Daleks, hot vampires and was that a Ice Warrior I spied? Four short months that will seem awfully long.


Love the look of Matt's Docgtor so far! The moment he kissed his leg, I was sold.

However, I have to disagree with the identity of Claire Bloom's character. Yes, the Doctor looks at her, but she is framed with Wilf and Sylvia. While it could be an Avatar of the Doctor Donna, what would she be doing on Gallifrey any way? My view is that it is Susan, the Doctor's granddaughter. it makes sense of the look over to Donna and the emotional moment of that scene to make sense. Besides, this woman was encouraging and manipulating events in Time: as impressive as Donna is, I'm only figuring another Time Lord would make sense.

As for the special overall, I dug it. Certainly, it was flawed, and I prefer the Parting of the Ways for best regeneration story, and perhaps even Caves of Androzani over the End of Time. But I have to admit, RTD did give it an emotional punch, that's for sure.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Eric Profancik » Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:02 am

Definitely agree there's a ton of great character moments, emotionalism, and a great Wilf. What I'd like are some answers to some basic questions: Why can the Master fly? Who is that woman? Who is the other Time Lord covering his face? How can the Doctor hold off his regeneration for days? Is this the 12th Doctor or we going to include David's self-regeneration?

My whole thought to this year was one of "that's it?" I understand the significance put into each episode, but they were nowhere near as wholly entertaining as years past.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Eric Profancik » Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:53 am

And if the flying isn't bad enough, what about the electricity?
What about Donna's mind frying and then not?
Rasillon just reversing what the Master did. Why? Why care if Earth is toast?
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Hatte Gasim » Thu Jan 07, 2010 3:13 am

I thought that woman was Romana! I would have to agree about the rather lip-service reintroduction of the Time Lords. They looked great, as did Gallifrey, but there was no chance for their storyline to breathe (standard RTD). No offence to Russell, he has brought back our show, but if he had stayed any longer, DW may have become as silly as the Douglas Adams era with everyone looking tired and just camping it up. I have great faith in the Moff and young Matt and I look forward to the show, not just the Doctor, regenerating.

Please, oh please, could the Master regenerate? Yes, we get it, the Master is in many ways the Doctor’s darker side, so it is right that Simm should be as cheeky-yet-intense as Tennant (just as Delgado was a suave as Pertwee), but I certainly could do with a more urbane, cold Master in future.

There were so many wonderful things in that final episode, and did anyone other than me see a hint at a resurrection/reinvention of the Movellans? It was just the image of Freema Agyeman in braids holding a blaster. I propose that some alien or other sees in Martha the template for the ultimate fighting android and makes hundreds of copies. We have the digital technology now for our screens to be filled with masses of Freemas wreaking robotic havoc on the universe, so why not? It’s a way for Freema to come back without being Martha. Actually, I really hope that we get no more returns of former companions. Continuity kills the enjoyment for anyone who wants to come new to the show.

What ever happened to that “Mister” red-herring in season 2 (or rather 28)? All those people called Mister something – Mr Crane, Mr Magpie, Mr Finch, Mr Jefferson, Mr Skinner. Was that just to make us subliminally alert when we first started hearing about Mr Saxon? But then there was Mr Copper. Were they all supposed to be dispossessed TIme Lords with fob watches? Did Russ and co just forget? Curious…
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Eric Profancik » Thu Jan 07, 2010 4:37 am

Romana? Very interesting idea. I like that.
I actually thought it might be the Doctor's mother. Who knows?
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Michael Stailey » Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:31 pm

Apparently the comics have expanded on Romana's involvement in the Time War, in that she was deposed as Lady President for dissenting against aggression in favor of peace talks with the Daleks (http://tardis.wikia.com/wiki/Romana). Perhaps a RTD nod to the written Doctor, with her being portrayed as one of the two shamed Time Lords.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Michael Stailey » Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:35 pm

BTW, I got the feeling that The Doctor's line to Wilfred about "perhaps I've stayed too long" might just have been Russell's own admission that it was time to pass the reigns onto another creative team. Suffering from a case of George Lucas syndrome, these specials were far from his best work on the series.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Polynikes » Thu Jan 07, 2010 4:39 pm

My children became interested in Dr Who from Series 3 onwards, so I have watched all subsequent episodes. Based on what I have seen, Russell T Davies would have been better off directing or taking an oversight of the script and leaving the bulk of the actual writing to others. I have found episodes written by him to be weak in terms of plot, and self-referential/indulgent (appealing to the Dr Who fan club rather than the casual viewer) to the point of irritation. The End of Time magnified these faults several fold. It seemed to be more a case of In Memoriam: Davies and Tennant than a Dr Who episode written to entertain the viewer. Mr Davies could not be bothered even to come up with a coherent plot - too many holes to list. The best Dr Who episodes i saw were Blink (the one with weeping angels) and the one with the library, the shadowy dead, Dr Moon, River Song etc. Simple, but powerful ideas, without multiple obscure allusions relying on the viewer having an encyclopaedic knowledge of Dr Who episodes in order to be able to enjoy the programme. I think Steven Moffat wrote these episodes, so I have high hopes for the future. I suspect in the fullness of time that David Tennant will be remembered as a "better" Dr Who than Matt Smith, as the latter looks a bit young to me and lacks sufficient gravitas to be able to carry it off as successfully as Tennant did. However, it is still a good change, as Tennant had really nothing new to add to the role, and seemed to be acting on auto-pilot towards the end of his long run - still very good, but lacking freshness. A change of personality might reinvigorate the character of Dr Who.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby HGervais » Thu Jan 07, 2010 11:03 pm

Polynikes wrote:I suspect in the fullness of time that David Tennant will be remembered as a "better" Dr Who than Matt Smith, as the latter looks a bit young to me and lacks sufficient gravitas to be able to carry it off as successfully as Tennant did. However, it is still a good change, as Tennant had really nothing new to add to the role, and seemed to be acting on auto-pilot towards the end of his long run - still very good, but lacking freshness. A change of personality might reinvigorate the character of Dr Who.

I don't know how anyone can say that based on the 2 1/2 minutes we have seen on Smith as The Doctor and it's worth noting there is always this kind of trepidation about a new actor taking over the role. For many Tennant is "their" Doctor and they just can't imagine anyone else in the role....until they actually see someone else in the role. It's the beauty of Doctor Who...there is always a new Doctor lurking somewhere in the background to renew the role & the series. As I've noted a few times, I have probably seen more of Smith's outside work than most people and I can see what Moffat saw in him. He has an ability to come off as both very young & very old at the same time. I too tired of Tennant towards the end, or maybe I just tired of RTD's writing of him but either way I think we are in for good times.
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Re: Doctor Who: The End of Time Discussion Thread

Postby Polynikes » Fri Jan 08, 2010 2:34 pm

HGervais wrote:
Polynikes wrote:I suspect in the fullness of time that David Tennant will be remembered as a "better" Dr Who than Matt Smith, as the latter looks a bit young to me and lacks sufficient gravitas to be able to carry it off as successfully as Tennant did. However, it is still a good change, as Tennant had really nothing new to add to the role, and seemed to be acting on auto-pilot towards the end of his long run - still very good, but lacking freshness. A change of personality might reinvigorate the character of Dr Who.

I don't know how anyone can say that based on the 2 1/2 minutes we have seen on Smith as The Doctor and it's worth noting there is always this kind of trepidation about a new actor taking over the role. For many Tennant is "their" Doctor and they just can't imagine anyone else in the role....until they actually see someone else in the role. It's the beauty of Doctor Who...there is always a new Doctor lurking somewhere in the background to renew the role & the series. As I've noted a few times, I have probably seen more of Smith's outside work than most people and I can see what Moffat saw in him. He has an ability to come off as both very young & very old at the same time. I too tired of Tennant towards the end, or maybe I just tired of RTD's writing of him but either way I think we are in for good times.


There is nothing more enjoyably mischievous than rushing to judgement based on a first impression! (No jokes about marriage, please). I think my instinctive judgement above about Matt Smith was more about me than him - based on the fact that Dr Who is and looks half my age, and I find it hard to believe in a Time Lord whose appearance makes me want to say "Go and get a job in the real world, son". I was also instantly irritated by the cry of "Geronimo!" which from the trailers I have seen looks set to become an annoying foible of the next Dr Who (with apologies to those afficionados of the programme who say that he is "The Doctor", not "Dr Who"). Anyway, I am usually wrong about these things, so Matt Smith's name will probably live forever on the lips of men, as David Tennant fades into obscurity - or worse, appears in EastEnders and I'm a Celebrity . Enjoy the new series, everyone.
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