Doctor Who, Jodie Edition

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Just wondering how everyone is finding the new season.

Personally, I've been finding it fine, and I like how its going to different parts of the globe. Not a Tom Baker or Tennant level but doing okay

I'm somewhat torn on it. I like Whitaker's Doctor, but the tone doesn't seem right. It's like slapping Matt Smith into an Eccleston episode. Well, okay, that might have worked with Boom Town, but still.

There have been a couple of good episodes, but I'm still not in love with the series and the only thing I'm sure of here is it's not Jodie's fault because she's been fantastic.

I'm done with it.

The show has been going downhill since Davies/Tennant series ended.
Moffat/Smith series was bad, and the Moffat/Capaldi series was atrocious.
And, the Chibnall/Whittaker series has just been boring so far.

Quite liking it taking a more historical approach to the show, with a bit more explanation and thought on the times it goes to rather than "oh hey we're in the past, time to break out the fancy outfits!"

It's ok...its ok...

Ok, Jodie Whittaker is fine as the Doctor. Not great, but fine. I think having the three assistants has not helped her at either. People used to complain about Clara pulling the attention away from the Doctor, but having three people all vying for screen time is even worse. I think starting her out with one companion to begin and letting Whittaker establish her Doctors character, rather than have her have to share screen time with three others is really hurting that.

Mind you, I think the other thing hurting this series is the fact that there has been no real threat to the Doctor or her gang. I mean other than the first episode, who have they faced? Killer cloth, a space racist (seriously this character had potential as a new character who just wanted to screw time up for shits and giggles, some times helping, mostly hindering the Doctor, but nope, space racist, ok bye), big spiders, a cute little gremlin who ended up saving the day and some emo former assassins. None of this has been exciting in the slightest. Maybe its building to something and it'll be worth it in the end, but at the moment I'm not over enthralled.

It's so tired and creaky. Moffat's seven year trip up his own arse scared away most of the viewers, so it's unsurprising that Chibnall's gone running back to the comfort zone of Russell T Davies' style. The problem is that Chris Chibnall isn't Russell T Davies, and has managed to replicate most of RTD's weaknesses without also matching his strengths. The 13th Doctor is a particularly bland and unoriginal incarnation, and more or less plays like an even more childish and more stupid 10th Doctor, but with even worse acting. Chibnall's also inexplicably opted for three companions, a choice that didn't work in the 1980s when most of the stories were 100 minutes long and works even less well today. Bradley Walsh as Graham is an inspired choice and he's easily the best thing in it, and he's got good chemistry with Tosin Cole's Ryan, which is good because Ryan's not got much going for him otherwise. This leaves Yasmin, played by Mandip Gill, who has thus far served no particular purpose other than providing an excuse for the characters to visit partition era Punjab. Chibnall's decision to write half the episodes and front load almost all of them was also a serious mistake, because Chibnall can't write a good Doctor Who story to save his life and having four out of the first five episodes be written by him quickly dampened most of my enthusiasm for the series. The series opener and the second episode were decent, but Arachnids in the UK ("Let's remake The Green Death, only shit") and The Tsuranga Conundrum were fairly shambolic. Malorie Blackman's episode Rosa was rather good, but was held back by the series' continuing commitment to not including pure historical anymore. The same goes for the last episode, Demons of the Punjab, which also managed to waste squander a properly interesting idea for an alien in the process. None of the monsters or villains have been a properly interesting character or entertaining screen presence. The production design, cinematography and music have been generally excellent this series, but little of it has been aid of truly good writing or acting. The series has three chances left to seriously impress me (the finale has no chance because Chibnall), but only It Takes You Away looks like it's got a hope in hell's chance of doing so.

Also that ghastly new TARDIS interior can die in a fire.

Jodie's just meh. Not great, not bad just meh. Feels like shes trying too hard to be like former doctors rather than make the role hers, but maybe that's the writings fault.
Companions are dull and uninteresting, would rather have none than this lot. Hopefully they get replaced next season.
Tardis interiors lame. No cool column in the center console, just a giant rock/crystal. Color scheme is very reminiscent of Tennants tardis too
Writings been dull and steadily getting worse. That's my biggest issue really. The episodes and their antagonists have been really lame and uninspired.
Hopefully they fire the writer and get new companions next season, though I highly doubt it.

Samos205:
Jodie's just meh. Not great, not bad just meh. Feels like shes trying too hard to be like former doctors rather than make the role hers, but maybe that's the writings fault.
Companions are dull and uninteresting, would rather have none than this lot. Hopefully they get replaced next season.
Tardis interiors lame. No cool column in the center console, just a giant rock/crystal. Color scheme is very reminiscent of Tennants tardis too
Writings been dull and steadily getting worse. That's my biggest issue really. The episodes and their antagonists have been really lame and uninspired.
Hopefully they fire the writer and get new companions next season, though I highly doubt it.

Chibnall definitely won't be going unless the viewing figures get worse than Moffat's lowest. Although by my current projections that will be some time in the middle of the next series.

Samos205:
Jodie's just meh. Not great, not bad just meh. Feels like shes trying too hard to be like former doctors rather than make the role hers, but maybe that's the writings fault.
Companions are dull and uninteresting, would rather have none than this lot. Hopefully they get replaced next season.

I see every new doctor doing the same thing, even Tennat. They always have to refer back to old Doctors, and... I understand why they do it. Its just becoming tiresome. They do usually stand on their own, but Smith and Capaldi were still too much like their predecessors.

Also, agree about the companions. Worse than Clara though, seemingly the most hated companion of Nu Who?

EDIT: Also hated the whole Rose storyline, particularly from Tennat era. So many companions haven't been that great.

Catfood220:
Ok, Jodie Whittaker is fine as the Doctor. Not great, but fine. I think having the three assistants has not helped her at either. People used to complain about Clara pulling the attention away from the Doctor, but having three people all vying for screen time is even worse. I think starting her out with one companion to begin and letting Whittaker establish her Doctors character, rather than have her have to share screen time with three others is really hurting that.

I think the Clara bit was unfair. Not because I liked her, but because the same complaint was true of every long-term companion (I don't count Jack or Ricky) in Nu Who minus arguably Donna. And even then,m...thedoctordonna. This has been a fundamental part of the show since it was revived, for better or worse. Rose was arguabvly the worst offender, but omgshewasmyfirstcompanioniloverherso so she usually gets a pass.

I mean, I literally prefer every companion so far to Rose, so I don't, but still.

More over, the introduction of romantic companions on the TARDIS heightened tis to an almost Poochie-level effect. Admittedly subverted in some instances, but a big problem in terms of drawing attention away, since even the Doctor was focused. And even without romance, virtually every companion was special, bringing their own mystery box to the table. Off-hand, Rose and Martha may be the only ones who weren't mystery boxes. Donna, Clara, Amy and Rory both, and even some of the temporary companions had this going.

If anything, it's nice to see companions who aren't literally the show's raison d'?tre. At least, so far.

It's a shame I don't find any of them particularly memorable. I hated Rose, but at least I never forgot her name.

That's...honestly my biggest problem with the show. Very little is memorable. Rosa was a standout episode, but the stories, the companions, and the baddies have all just been...meh.

Mind you, I think the other thing hurting this series is the fact that there has been no real threat to the Doctor or her gang. I mean other than the first episode, who have they faced? Killer cloth, a space racist (seriously this character had potential as a new character who just wanted to screw time up for shits and giggles, some times helping, mostly hindering the Doctor, but nope, space racist, ok bye), big spiders, a cute little gremlin who ended up saving the day and some emo former assassins. None of this has been exciting in the slightest. Maybe its building to something and it'll be worth it in the end, but at the moment I'm not over enthralled.

Basically that, but with the stories as well.

Chibnal, said he wanted this to be an entry point for new fans, but they already did this with series 1 and series 5, and both managed to cannibalise exciting villains from the show's past. They also both managed to introduce people without slowing down to explain every little things. I know Doctor Who is a family show, but even kids should find this infantilising at this point. And I know a lot of people don't like Smith, but I maintain his first series is a solid intro to the world of Doctor Who: Moffat edition.

And that's probably what worries me the most., The first series of RTD was basically a sign of things to come. So was the first Moffat series. If this is where things are going, why am I even here?

Mostly because I like Whitaker as the Doctor and I'm waiting for that one killer episode to make me all excited for the series, but I'm also an episode or two behind because Jodie's not enough to make me excited for each new episode.

Moffat wasted a lot of talent. I don't want to see that happen again.

Jodie Whittaker as the doctor, fine but not yet apparently making the role her own. Forgettable villains. Average thrills. Too many assistants diluting focus. It's all okay, but nothing making it unmissable.

The Rosa Parks episode slipped into annoyingly heavy-handed sermonising. Normally, I find "issues" episodes to be characteristic of a show that's gone on too long and the creators have got too serious or are running out of ideas; so pretty worrying a handful of episodes into a new showrunner.

Honestly, it feels like a return to what could questionably pass as "form" for this show, after the awfulness of Moffatt's run and the heavy handed emotional gurning of Rusty's later seasons.

So, this is going to sound weird, but I missed people dying in Doctor Who. In a show where the main character is so powerful, it's difficult to have stakes because you always know the Doctor is going to pull out some bullshit solution which will solve everything. The fact that people die, and we see them die and they don't get immediately brought back by some kind of techno-magic is really important to this show, because it establishes that there are stakes. Sure, the Doctor is going to succeed, but other people might not make it.

I do agree with the general criticism that there are too many companions. This will probably be solved over time by giving them episodes in which they are more prominent, like Demons of the Punjab for Yasmin. Speaking of which, I think everyone's going to focus on the Rosa as the "woke" episode, but Demons of the Punjab is essentially an example of how to do the same thing vastly, vastly better. It feels like a deeply personal episode, rather than the whole "meet your heroes" thing which Doctor Who frankly does too much.

I mean, for me it feels refreshing that I don't come out of each episode feeling like someone's just been jangling keys in my face, and maybe people liked that sort of rapid pace and quote/unquote "big" sci-fi ideas which were absolutely never resolved or used in an interesting way, but me I found it exhausting and trite. Doctor Who has never been a good science fiction show. It's a show about British people having feelings about things, and parts of this season have delivered on that.

Personally I'm enjoying it a whole lot.

Jodie's a lot of fun in the role, the companions is pretty entertaining, the production values well done and the new music is pretty great.

I do agree with a couple issues on 2 or 3 episodes for the writing. Arachnids in the U.K. is the only one that's been a dud for me so far. Surprisingly didn't hate the Tsuranga Conundrum like everyone else did. Happy that Yasmin got some nice depth in Demons of the Punjab. I even really liked the new one Kerblam! as a nice mix of classic/new series type of story.

I liked series 10 surprisingly considering how much the show's been letting me down the past couple, but series 11 has kinda made me excited for Doctor Who again.

I'm really enjoying Jodie's Doctor. She does seem to be channeling a bit too much Tennant/Smith into the role at the moment but she has frequently referenced how she is still figuring herself out, so I'm guessing the first series will be a kind of 'homage' series where she deliberately mirrors previous aspects of the Doctor before finally coalescing into Whitaker Doctor in the final few episodes.

I'm not particularly alongside the new-found importance of her companions though. As far back as I remember, the Doctor's companions have been innocent bystanders swept up in the mad-cap life of the Doctor, whereas in this series it kinda seems the other way around. Graham, Ryan and Yas already have their own drama going on, and it feels like the Doctor is just along for the ride, at least for the moment.

The writing, as many have said, still leaves a lot to be desired. To be honest no story, for me, has surpassed the Tennant/Tate character arcs, and since then the series has been stretching itself trying to rekindle the same magic those two had but with little success. I think, as well, with such a long-running series the writers are simply running out of new ground to break. At this point it's almost all been seen and done before, and there seems to be a definite 'scraping-of-the-barrel' going on with the newer episodes.

In conclusion, I would have to say that Whitaker strikes me as another Capaldi - which is to say a brilliant Doctor let down by average companions and bad writing.

Natemans:
Surprisingly didn't hate the Tsuranga Conundrum like everyone else did.

I thought it was one of the better episodes.

Grouchy Imp:
which is to say a brilliant Doctor let down by average companions and bad writing.

You take that back! Nardole is the greatest companion of all time!

evilthecat:
Speaking of which, I think everyone's going to focus on the Rosa as the "woke" episode, but Demons of the Punjab is essentially an example of how to do the same thing vastly, vastly better.

It certainly was. That Rosa one set my teeth on edge for when the Demons of the Punjab episode arrived. But that was very nicely handled. It removed to a large extent the simplistic notion of heroes and villains, and addressed the tragedy and complexity of how such tumultuous times tear people apart without it making it an absurdly simply good versus evil morality tale.

And I really quite enjoyed the recent Kablam! episode, which obvious satirises big tech like Amazon, but was mostly well done.

Agema:
It certainly was. That Rosa one set my teeth on edge for when the Demons of the Punjab episode arrived. But that was very nicely handled. It removed to a large extent the simplistic notion of heroes and villains, and addressed the tragedy and complexity of how such tumultuous times tear people apart without it making it an absurdly simply good versus evil morality tale.

Regardless of the inanity that Rosa's villain offered, I quite liked the episode. We got to Demons, and the opposite happened. I liked the twist of the villains, but I overall found the episode flat and uninteresting. The ending was killer, but I thought it did a poor job of getting there. I got to that end and thought I'd probably have felt it more if I had for a second felt anything leading up.

And I really quite enjoyed the recent Kablam! episode, which obvious satirises big tech like Amazon, but was mostly well done.

Kerblam! was really fun. What I particularly liked ab out it was that it managed to work its messages in without necessarily slowing the plot to a crawl, which has been my issue with several of the new series' episodes up until now.

Side note: I always used to mock BBC for ruining any suspense with their extra-long teasers for the next episode, so I'm glad they stopped doing it, but I've noticed they're now sometimes shorter than the message to click to subscribe on YouTube and now it just seems kinda silly.

Agema:

evilthecat:
Speaking of which, I think everyone's going to focus on the Rosa as the "woke" episode, but Demons of the Punjab is essentially an example of how to do the same thing vastly, vastly better.

It certainly was. That Rosa one set my teeth on edge for when the Demons of the Punjab episode arrived. But that was very nicely handled. It removed to a large extent the simplistic notion of heroes and villains, and addressed the tragedy and complexity of how such tumultuous times tear people apart without it making it an absurdly simply good versus evil morality tale.

And I really quite enjoyed the recent Kablam! episode, which obvious satirises big tech like Amazon, but was mostly well done.

Kerblam! gave me some nice classic series especially its take on major retail or management corporations.

I like Jodie Whittaker as The Doctor. What I don't like is that the episodes so far seem to be making really heavy handed statements and it's annoying. Not that I'm against making a statement, Star Trek used to be good at making statements, but they're being really annoying with it. I liked that last episode though, it was more like the kind of thing I want to see out of Doctor Who.

Hawki:
https://screenrant.com/doctor-who-jodie-whittaker-showrunner-exit-2019/

Might be a moot point soon.

It might be, like that time Kathleen Kennedy was fired from Star Wars.

So, I felt that the Witchfinders was a pretty mediocre episode at best, but Alan Cummings as James I made it for me.

I honestly love that the Twitter reaction is all like "lol, they made him a super extra gay, this is awesome!" No honey, that's a historically accurate depiction of James I..

evilthecat:

So, this is going to sound weird, but I missed people dying in Doctor Who. In a show where the main character is so powerful, it's difficult to have stakes because you always know the Doctor is going to pull out some bullshit solution which will solve everything. The fact that people die, and we see them die and they don't get immediately brought back by some kind of techno-magic is really important to this show, because it establishes that there are stakes. Sure, the Doctor is going to succeed, but other people might not make it.

I wouldn't say that's a weird complaint. I think one of the better moments in "Nu Who" was towards the end of The Doctor Dances, where the Doctor realizes that for once there's a possibility of a truly happy ending without casualties. There's a desperate hopefulness to the scene, emphasized by the plea to the universe during the climax and punctuated by the Doctor's sheer joy that everybody lived through the adventure. It's a powerful moment that simply could not meaningfully exist if such an outcome was the rule instead of the exception. And that's how I think it should be. Being able to save everyone should feel like an incredible victory, a perfect game, something that you constantly hope for but that only happens when the stars align. So I certainly don't think it's weird to miss people dying in Doctor Who. Death has to be common to make it feel special on the [ideally] rare times when the Doctor can actually pull off a full save.

evilthecat:
So, I felt that the Witchfinders was a pretty mediocre episode at best, but Alan Cummings as James I made it for me.

I honestly love that the Twitter reaction is all like "lol, they made him a super extra gay, this is awesome!" No honey, that's a historically accurate depiction of James I..

Yes, Cummings stole pretty much every scene he was in. Not sure how accurate it was but Jimmy boy was a very very strange person by all accounts so as far as I'm concerned it was 100% historical.

Also, liked the claymationy style to the mud monsters. Reminded me a bit of the Boneless from Flatline

Asita:

I wouldn't say that's a weird complaint. I think one of the better moments in "Nu Who" was towards the end of The Doctor Dances, where the Doctor realizes that for once there's a possibility of a truly happy ending without casualties. There's a desperate hopefulness to the scene, emphasized by the plea to the universe during the climax and punctuated by the Doctor's sheer joy that everybody lived through the adventure. It's a powerful moment that simply could not meaningfully exist if such an outcome was the rule instead of the exception. And that's how I think it should be. Being able to save everyone should feel like an incredible victory, a perfect game, something that you constantly hope for but that only happens when the stars align. So I certainly don't think it's weird to miss people dying in Doctor Who. Death has to be common to make it feel special on the [ideally] rare times when the Doctor can actually pull off a full save.

That moment you described, with Eccleston, totally made me a, appreciate him as a Doctor, and b, resonated with me for this exact reason- to be able to save everyone was supposed to be so rare but always strived for.

Oh, and c - That was when I really got on board with the Nu Who. I'm kinda out of it now - I'm not really in a place to comment on anything post Matt Smith, sadly, but I hope everyone is enjoying it.

Asita:
There's a desperate hopefulness to the scene, emphasized by the plea to the universe during the climax and punctuated by the Doctor's sheer joy that everybody lived through the adventure.

I didn't really see it as desperation. I saw it as the Doctor's heart growing three sizes that day. To this point, it had been intended that Eccleston had been the regeneration to end the Time War (and would be as such until they had to cast John Hurt). This was a character who had committed genocide and just recently, and so he'd been behaving like someone who is dealing with trauma. We see it with the Nestine in the first episode as almost paralysis, depression in the third, and anger in Dalek. And he sees hope and just for a scene or two, we see him come to life again. While it is a retcon, we see this with the War Doctor as well; he never truly stops being the Doctor, even though he has grown tired of a war to the point of killing everyone.

"Everybody lives" applies to the Doctor, as well. Least, in my opinion.

On the overall point, I guess I sort of agree. Doctore Who was overusing the hell out of certain tropes, and this was one of them. Like the Daleks, I needed a break but wanted it back. My only problem with the recent return is my prior complaint revisted...tonal issues. Jodie and the tone of the episodes often seem at odds. It's like putting Daffy Duck into Schindler's List or something. People dying around her, that kind of episode, seemed more appropriate with Nine or Ten. Twelve, too.

I don't know, it's just weird seeing someone so irrepressible in these scenarios.

Something Amyss:

Asita:
There's a desperate hopefulness to the scene, emphasized by the plea to the universe during the climax and punctuated by the Doctor's sheer joy that everybody lived through the adventure.

I didn't really see it as desperation. I saw it as the Doctor's heart growing three sizes that day. To this point, it had been intended that Eccleston had been the regeneration to end the Time War (and would be as such until they had to cast John Hurt). This was a character who had committed genocide and just recently, and so he'd been behaving like someone who is dealing with trauma. We see it with the Nestine in the first episode as almost paralysis, depression in the third, and anger in Dalek. And he sees hope and just for a scene or two, we see him come to life again. While it is a retcon, we see this with the War Doctor as well; he never truly stops being the Doctor, even though he has grown tired of a war to the point of killing everyone.

"Everybody lives" applies to the Doctor, as well. Least, in my opinion.

I was not trying to say that he was experiencing desperation, but desperate hope as in "desperately wanting something". Synonyms veered closer to frantically, severely, and excitedly than anything else. "Is this actually happening? Please tell me that this is happening!", as it were.

I think it is sad that one of the few good male role models on British TV became a woman. Most guys on British TV tend to be thugs, morons, and see violence as the first option.

As to the casting itself. Jodie Whittaker is a great actress and certainly had the chops to pull of the role. Unlike others I really enjoyed the first episode, I thought Jodie pulled off the confused regeneration period really well and I thought she wore Capaldi's costume far better than he ever did. But the show seems determined to sabotage her. Her Doctor has become more childish as the series has gone on and her costume looks like a cross between something that should be worn on Rainbow and another famous alien, Mork from Ork.

It is as if the BBC deliberately are making this series badly. I can't believe that any of the higher ups, no matter their political leanings, looked at this season and thought "yep, this'll be a ratings winner."

Perhaps the most annoying thing for me is how much this current season of Doctor Who feels like The Sarah Jane Adventures. Now that isn't a terrible thing as the SJA was a brilliant show but it had its own style and feel to Doctor Who, even when the Doctor appeared in it. I want Doctor Who to feel like I'm watching Doctor Who and at the moment I just don't.

So now that it's over...thoughts?

From what I've heard, the season's been pretty dire, with reactions ranging from "terrible" to "meh." I may give it a chance, but right now, there seems to be so many better options.

I liked Rosa and It Takes You Away a fair bit, and Kerblam! was fairly good as well, bar some mangled messaging. The Woman Who Fell To Earth, The Ghost Monument, and The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos were basically fine as well, although nothing I'm in a hurry to return to. Demons of the Punjab and The Witchfinders were both victims of wasted potential stemming from not making them pure historical stories, but weren't total losses. Arachnids in the UK was a dire remake of The Green Death, and The Tsuranga Conundrum was a shambles. Bradley Walsh as Graham lights up the screen and is easily the best thing in the show, Tosin Cole as Ryan has excellent chemistry with Graham but struggles on his own, Jodie Whittaker as the title character is a highly proficient performance of an often insufferably stupid and moralistic Doctor I hope to God goes out like the bitch she is, and Mandip Gill as Yasmin barely exists, even in the episodes that are meant to be about her. The show's gotten away from the absurd overambition that blighted the Steven Moffat era, and has promptly run too far in the opposite direction, largely offering up plots that we've seen variations on a hundred times before, and generally done better. Doing away with two part stories was also a mistake, as fifty minutes isn't enough for most Doctor Who plots to really work. At least under RTD and Moffat two or three stories a series benefited from being roughly feature length. It's mostly not bad, but it's certainly not great either. 6/10

Well now it's finished, I would give the series a meh. There were only 3 episodes I liked, The Witchfinders, the one where the parallel universe is a frog (can't remember the name) and the finale. Jodie Whittaker was fine as the Doctor, Bradley Walsh was great as Graham and Yaz and Ryan where there. Which as I've mention before is the problem with having three companions.

Like I say, the series was meh, but the first series ofca new Doctor is never the best as they are busy establishing the character of the Doctor and the companion(s). But it seems like just as it was getting going, it ended and other than the special on New Years Day, Doctor Who won't be back until 2020, killing any momentum it might have gathered. It's like the BBC are trying to kill it off completely.

This season was far more consistent. Not many highs or lows (or any). Which means there is nothing that stands out. It gets a meh from me too.

Graham is THE companion and everyone supports his progress. He seems to care about Grace's death more than her own grandson.

But I seem to remember something similar happening in old Who with multiple companions. One was clearly more important than the others

I don't really like Dr.Who, but I've heard good things about this one. Anyone recommend it?

Silentpony:
I don't really like Dr.Who, but I've heard good things about this one. Anyone recommend it?

If you didn't like Series 1-4 (The ones with Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant in the lead role) then you almost certainly won't like Series 11 because it's essentially the same thing but worse.

Silentpony:
I don't really like Dr.Who, but I've heard good things about this one. Anyone recommend it?

Yeah, I kinda do. Liked it a lot.

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