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Old 03-18-2014, 07:23 PM   #111 (permalink)
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I've been doing a lot of behind the scenes stuff so when I do start writing again I can knock them out a lot quicker.
Yes but he didn't ask about your sordid sexual habits; he wants to know when your next Doctor Who update will be?

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Old 03-18-2014, 07:33 PM   #112 (permalink)
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Old 03-19-2014, 11:13 AM   #113 (permalink)
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208: Doctor Who : The Movie

Doctor : 8th (Paul McGann)
Companions : Grace Holloway (Daphne Ashbrook) Chang Lee (Yee Jee Tso)
Series : -
Originally Transmitted:
14th May 1996 (U.S.)
27th May 1996 (U.K.)




Now where do I begin with this clusterfuck?

The mid 90s was a weird time to be a Doctor Who fan. In 1993 the show had just celebrated it's 30th anniversary, BBC Enterprises (As opposed to BBC Television) had planned to make a special 30th anniversary straight to video story called 'The Dark Dimension'.
It was a disaster from the start, many ex Doctor's complained that the script just arrived at their homes with a note saying 'looking forward to working with you' without them even bothering to call their agents to check their availability or even if they wanted to do it, some were annoyed that the story centred around Tom Baker feeling it was unfair to Slyvester McCoy who was still the current Doctor at the time.

As 1993 turned to 1994 there was still a buzz about the show. The BBC were releasing VHS tapes of old episodes monthly, Virgin books were releasing 24 original new novels a year, but still nothing from the BBC in the way of the series. During the 30th anniversary documentary '30 Years In The Tardis' head of BBC programming Alan Yentob was asked about the series coming back. He was non-committal but it was known he was a supporter of the show and wanted it back. It was around that time that rumours began circulating that Steven Spielberg was interested in Doctor Who.
And they were true, almost....

Steven Spielberg had history with Doctor Who. In the early 80s Disney had attempted to buy the rights of the show and Spielberg was their choice to run it. He was willing to do it but fell out with them during negotiations. He wanted it run by Disney's parent company with their full backing to give the show the justice he felt it deserved. Disney wanted it run by Touchstone Pictures one of their subsidiary companies.
The project never got off the ground.

The BBC were actually in negotiations with a man called Philip Segal, a British television producer who had been trying to acquire the rights for an American Doctor Who series since 1989. In 1992 he joined Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment which was when he was really able to get things moving, by moving I mean spending the next 3 years trying to keep the BBC, Fox, Universal & Amblin all happy. Segal couldn't get Fox to commit to a full series but did manage to get them to make a 2 hour movie with an option for a series depending on the reaction. He also left Amblin Entertainment in mid 95. Because it was him personally who owned the rights to the show Amblin & Spielberg's involvement ended at this point. In October 1995 it was finally announced Doctor Who was coming back, and in the new year Paul McGann was announced as the 8th Doctor.
All we had to do now was wait.

Then on 14th May 1996 the world watched as Doctor Who returned triumphantly to our screens again......

Only it didn't.
In the U.S. Fox decided in it's wisdom to screen the episode opposite the final ever episode of 'Roseanne' meaning that not many people watched it. And the BBC didn't screen it at all deciding that showing it on Bank Holiday Monday on the 27th would be a better idea, and even then most people who did want to watch it had already seen it by then because they had also decided to release it on VHS a week before it was broadcast.

So the week before May bank holiday I woke up early and for the first time in my life went into town and waited for Woolworths to open at 9am, bought it and rushed home to watch it before I went to work at 12pm. So what was it about?

The Plot

The Master is being tried by The Daleks on Skaro for 'a list of evil crimes', It's never explained why the Daleks would hold a trial rather than just exterminate him or why they would even care about his crimes but we'll go with it. Then we're told The Master's last request before being put to death was that The Doctor takes his remains back to Gallifrey. So now we're supposed to believe that The Daleks would let their biggest enemy swan into a court on Skaro and leave without them even attempting to kill him. And all this is just the spoken intro to the thing.

The chest containing the Master's remains breaks open and we see a black slime emerge, the Tardis starts to go wrong and instead of landing on Gallifrey the 7th Doctor lands in San Francisco on December 30th 1999 where upon landing and exiting the Tardis is immediately gunned down by a gang of Chinese Triads.

Chang Lee, a boy being chased by the gang sees what happens and calls for an ambulance. He goes with the Doctor in the ambulance to the hospital, meanwhile the Master in his black slime form also gets aboard the ambulance.

Doctor Grace Holloway is at the opera with her boyfriend when she is paged back to the hospital. She looks at the Doctor's X-rays which show he has two hearts and just dismisses it as a double exposure. While preforming surgery on him (In her opera gown) The Doctor briefly comes out of conciousness and tells her to stop because he's not human. They put him under and Grace inserts a probe into the Doctor's heart in the wrong place which causes him to have a seizure and kill him. Grace asks Chang Lee if he knows anything about the guy but he says no and then runs off with the Doctor's possessions.



Meanwhile the Doctor is placed in the morgue where he regenerates, and escapes by kicking it open.




At the home of Bruce the ambulance man the Master now in the form of a black goo snake takes over possession of Bruce's body. Both Time Lords are reborn.



The Doctor picks out some clothes from the hospital lockers which are mostly filled with costumes for the new years eve fancy dress party. He discards a 4th Doctor scarf and finally settles on a Wild Bill Hickok costume and then goes into the hospital waiting area.

He spots Grace who has just resigned from her job after the hospital administrator burned the Doctor's X-rays and told her to pretend it never happened. He follows her back to her car and Grace thinks she's dealing with a nut until he cries out in pain and then pulls the probe from out of his chest.



Then Grace realises it's the same man she operated on only with a different appearance and takes him back to her place where on arriving discovers her boyfriend has left her and cleared the house out.
The Master arrives at the hospital and the receptionist tells him he looks awful, he tells her he had a rough night and then peels off a fingernail, already his body is beginning to fail and he's looking for a new one. He begins by looking for Chang Lee.

Lee finds the Tardis key in the Doctor's bag of possessions and enters it, he is soon joined by the Master where he tells Lee that the Doctor stole the Tardis and his body from him and he wants Lee's help to get them back. He forces Lee to open the Tardis Eye of Harmony (Which was on Gallifrey last time it was mentioned in the old series, but Steven Moffat went with it being in the Tardis for the new series so I guess I should too).



Lee can open the Eye Of Harmony because for some unexplained reason only someone with a human retina pattern can open the Eye Of Harmony. The Master then discovers that the Doctor also has a human retina pattern meaning that he is half human, he explains to Grace that he is half human on his mother's side.

** At this point I need to take a break to vomit**

The Doctor is taking a walk through the park with Grace and his memories of who he is begin to return and he also gets excited about the shoes she gave him. Then we get The Doctor kissing Grace which had tons of Doctor Who fans choking on their jelly babies with horror. I never had a problem with it. He then realises that The Master has opened the Eye of Harmony and wants his body and the Eye of Harmony will suck the Earth through it if it is not closed by midnight and that he needs an atomic clock component to get the Tardis to close it. She doesn't want to believe him and goes back to her home. He proves it to her by walking straight through her French windows. While at her house they just happen to see a news report about a millennium clock run by atomic energy......

Well what a coincidence !!!!!!!

The Master shows up at Grace's house offer to give them a ride to the San Francisco Institute of Technological Advancement and Research which is where the clock is. The Doctor is unaware of who is driving them until The Master removes his shades. The Doctor and Grace escape and we have a race to get to the atomic clock. The Doctor and Grace steal a police motorcycle and The Master & Chang Lee take the ambulance. While looking for the component from the clock the Tardis needs we discover the Master's new trick of killing people by sneezing over them. Grace is also hit by the slime on her arm.



The Doctor manages to get the component first and goes back to the Tardis, he realises the Eye has been open too long and needs to rewire the Tardis to go back to a point in time before the Eye was open. The Master is able to control Grace through the infection he caused to her arm and she knocks out The Doctor with a spanner.

The Doctor awakes restrained, The Master walks down the stairs looking camper than Liberace saying that he likes to 'Dress for the occasion'. The Doctor is chained up with his eyes forced open. The Doctor makes a plea to Chang Lee saying to look at Grace and see she is possessed by evil and that The Master is lying to him. Chang Lee refuses to open the eye so the Master kills him by breaking his neck.
The Master now needs Grace to open the eye but this won't work in her possessed state so he releases her from it and uses her to open the eye.
While the Master is absorbing the Doctor's lives Grace runs back to the console room and connects the rest of the atomic clock and closes the eye just as the Earth is about to be sucked up and sends the Tardis into a temporal orbit. For some unknown reason midnight on new years eve happens at the same time everywhere around the world...hmmm.



The Master having failed throws Grace off a balcony killing her also, The Doctor and The Master have their final battle and The Master is sucked into the eye having refused help from The Doctor (It's later revealed in the new series that The Master was saved from being sucked into the eye by the Time Lords so he could be used by them in the time war.)

In another sickening moment the Tardis uses what looks like regeneration energy from the new series to bring Chang Lee & Grace back from the dead, apparently being outside of space and time means you can't die now.



The Doctor shows them Gallifrey and then takes them home to New Years Eve. He lets Chang Lee keep the two bags of gold dust promised to him by The Master and warns him not to be in San Francisco next Christmas and to take a vacation. He then asks Grace to come with him, she refuses and asks him to come with her instead. They kiss and he goes off back to the Tardis to a new destination.

First things first, I will not have a bad thing said about Paul McGann who is nothing but excellent in this. In fact if it wasn't for him this story may have ended up being bottom. If you watch Night Of The Doctor (Which made my jaw hit the floor when I saw him appear in it) you'll see more of what McGann wanted to bring to the role, I.E. not wearing a silly wig and wearing a leather jacket. And he is right, it's a much more effective outfit than the fancy dress outfit of a cowboy he gets in the movie.

If like me you were used to the classic BBC series seeing Doctor Who with lots of money spent on it and with up to date special effects to rival any movie of the time was a bit of a novelty. Throw in a charismatic Doctor and lots of references to the classic series as you can (Even one as small the professor of the institute chanting 'Om, Om' to himself was a nod to Jon Pertwee's final story Planet Of The Spiders). It's all very nice having all that stuff but one you get over all that you realise that the plot is wafer thin.

I mean it's nice that we get to see the 7th Doctor regenerate to the 8th Doctor but none of it is really needed. If anything all it does is slow down the story and we don't get to the main plot of the story until something like 45 minutes of the episode has passed. Compare that to how Russell T Davies started the first story 'Rose' in the new series where the action starts about 5 minutes in and within minutes you know who the Doctor is and what's going on.

I quite like a lot of the main cast. Yee Jee Tso as Chang Lee is kind of annoying but he's supposed to be so no complaints there. Daphne Ashbrook is decent as Grace. I find her a little bit too whiny but I think had this gone to a series she would have toned down on that. Having seen what Daphne Ashbrook is like in real life she does have a great sense of humour and does have chemistry with Paul McGann.

I have no idea what Eric Roberts was smoking when he took this role but his Master is pure pantomime, he even manages to make Anthony Ainley's 1980s Master look minimalist. It's interesting that Russell T Davies also told John Simm to camp up the character and go overboard a lot more than Simm wanted to himself.
It's a growing annoyance that these showrunners can't go back and look at Roger Delgado's portrayal and pick up on the subtleties of the character.
Rumour has it that Steven Moffat has cast a new Master for Series 8, Sylvester McCoy says he knows who it is and this person will be brilliant. The bookies favourite for the role is Charles Dance.
Although to be fair to Eric Roberts he does play Bruce the ambulance man well and makes him likeable in the few scenes he's in.

There are a few things that are unforgivable, the Tardis has never and will never have a cloaking device. It's called a Chameleon Circuit, it has always been a Chameleon Circuit and will always be a Chameleon Circuit and I love it that in 'Rose' we get a scene where The Doctor tells Rose about the Tardis changing it's appearance and she asks if it's a cloaking device and he corrects her calling it a Chameleon Circuit.
Thank you thank you thank you Russell T.

Also the bit about the Doctor being half human, can we forget that ever happened please. It's just such an awful Hollywood cliché, so bad I'm surprised they didn't make The Doctor and The Master brothers as well.

I also read some of the plans that the production team might have used had a series been commissioned and it revolves The Doctor going around the universe in search of his Father who would eventually be played by guess who... Leonard Nimoy' (Yawn... what amazing foresight & originality these Hollywood producers possess)
I forget a lot of the other stuff they had planned (The site was removed years ago) but I think a talking Tardis was another one. At the time it was disappointing that it didn't get an American series but in hindsight getting one may have killed it for good and just makes you appreciate what Russell T Davis did with it when it was in his hands.

If you want to watch this go ahead but bear in mind this is mindless drivel but Paul McGann alone will save it for you. After you've done that go watch 'Night Of The Doctor' on youtube and thank Fox & Universal that they at least got one thing right in casting him.



I leave you with one final piece of trivia. This is the only Doctor Who story ever to be filmed in Canada.
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Old 03-19-2014, 11:52 AM   #114 (permalink)
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Not a huge fan of Dr Who, and I've watched a few episodes, but that was a fantastic in-depth review Urb. Just thought I'd drop by to say that.
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Old 03-19-2014, 12:08 PM   #115 (permalink)
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Cheers Planky
I just hope they're not all that long, but this was a one off.
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Old 03-19-2014, 05:25 PM   #116 (permalink)
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I saw this back when it came out and I've never seen it since and hardly remember much about it, but what I do remember that this is what happens when the Yanks try to get their hands on something that they shouldn't. The problem with the film was that it was quickly forgotten and so was Paul McGann as the Doctor. But the choice of Eric Roberts as the Master must be one of the most outlandish casting choices in the history of Doctor Who. Eric Roberts was always great as cool dudes in films like Runaway Train etc, but I guess the casting director must have completely forgotten that Roger Delgado had ever existed and had defined the role of the Master many years earlier.
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Old 03-19-2014, 09:44 PM   #117 (permalink)
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A Musical Interlude (Part 1: The 60s)

Over the years a few Doctor Who inspired songs have been released some sung by fans, others sung by cast members, some just to cash in. Here are a few of them.




The Go Go's - I'm Gonna Spend My Christmas With A Dalek

With the show barely a year old the first attempt to cash in with the popularity of the show for Christmas of 1964 was this piece of pure cheese by The Go Go's (Nothing to do with Belinda Carlisle or Jane Wiedlin) who hailed from Newcastle. I'm not quite sure why you would want to hang a stocking from a Dalek's toes or even if they have toes. The whole song does seem rather odd when you think that the subject of the song is a Nazi inspired killing machine.
Surprisingly (cough) this was The Go Go's only release, also surprisingly this song didn't set the record buying public alight and sunk without trace.


---




The Earthlings - Landing Of The Daleks

With Dalekmania sweeping across the nation in 1965 many small record labels saw it as a chance to cash in on the craze, many of them however failed to even chart. Released in 1965 Landing Of The Daleks was one of the first of these recorded by a bunch of session musicians rather than an actual band and this was as far as I can make out was their only release. Due to government rules of the time The BBC could not play the song on the radio due it it featuring a message in morse code which translated said 'SOS The Daleks Have Landed'.


---




Roberta Tovey - Who's Who

At last we reach our first cast member recording, well sort of.
Roberta Tovey was the 12 year old girl who played Susan in the two Dalek movies that came out in the mid 60s. In 1965 she released this song. Despite being one of the better songs (In the context of what you've just heard) to be released around this time I can find no record of it ever bothering the charts.


---




Frazer Hines - Who's Dr Who?

In 1967 the first television cast member to try his hand at recording a Doctor Who inspired song was by Frazer Hines who played Jamie McCrimmon to the 2nd Doctor. Teaming up with successful 60s songwriting duo Barry Mason and Les Reed they released this early Pink Floyd inspired psychedelic garage fuzz wig out which was much better than it had any right to be. And yes, the song flopped. In fact Frazer Hines said himself years later that his song was the only song Mason & Reed released that ever flopped.

In a bizarre twist of fate shortly after recording Piper At The Gates Of Dawn Syd Barrett & Pink Floyd because of their interest in the music being used in Doctor Who during the 60s were given a demonstration of the new VCS3 synthesizer by Delia Derbyshire at the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, they later went on to use it heavily in the recording of Dark Side Of The Moon.


---




The Crystalites - Doctor Who

As if to prove that Doctor Who was popular not just in the UK but in other various parts of the world in 1969 we have Jamaican band The Crystalites giving us a reggae version of the theme tune which is almost totally unrecognisable from the original.


The 70s to follow soon
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Old 04-12-2014, 11:00 AM   #118 (permalink)
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207: The Lazarus Experiment

Doctor : 10th (David Tennant)
Companions : Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman)
Series : 3 (New Series)
Originally Transmitted: 5th May 2007



The Lazarus Experiment is one of those mid series episodes that is just kind of there to fill space, and that's about it. Even before it aired there was very little to get excited about. The only real highlight of the episode is that we finally get to see long time Doctor Who fan & writer Mark Gatiss (He of The League Of Gentlemen & Sherlock fame) appear in an episode of Doctor Who. And it has to be said, he deserved a lot better than this.

The only other thing to get excited about is that Thelma Barlow who played Mavis in Coronation Street is in this episode as well playing Lady Thaw, so you can see the level we're dealing with here.
Also I suppose if you're a David Tennant fangirl (or boy) you get to squee all over him being suited & booted in a dinner jacket again, sadly Martha only gets to wear a brown dress that looks like a potato sack. You'd think the costume designers would have at least made a better effort there. Come on Russell, I know Doctor Who has a huge gay male following but give us straight fans a bit of eye candy too once in a while.


Tennant in a suit for the laydees

This episode was written by Stephen Greenhorn who's past credits include The Bill, Where The Heart Is, creating the Scottish soap opera River City and also adapting his own musical play about The Proclaimers called Sunshine On Leith into a movie.
Would he use this attempt at writing for something totally different like Doctor Who as a chance to really use his imagination and to blind the viewer with interesting and thought provoking concepts?
Well no actually, it's a story about a mad scientist. Which, to be fair to the man is exactly what Russell T Davies asked him for. A Marvel Comics style mad professor.
Did I mention I hate Marvel Comics?

I guess now would be a good time to explain the plot, although in fairness you could probably write it on the back of a postage stamp . But I shall attempt to go into a little more detail.
The Doctor takes Martha home after her promised one trip in the Tardis, totally oblivious to her disappointment when she realises he's materialised inside her living room and wants to dump her there. While he's saying goodbye to her Martha's mother phones and tells her to turn the TV on because her sister is on the news.
She turns on the TV to see her sister Tish alongside professor Richard Lazarus, who she is doing public relations work for. Lazarus announces to the assembled press that he will change what it means to be human.
The Doctor leaves Martha behind in the Tardis but then comes back seconds later when he realises what Lazarus said.

Later that evening they arrive at Lazarus black tie presentation being run by Tish. Tish seems impressed by good looking guy that her sister has bought to the event but soon leaves when she realises he's a 'science geek'. Martha's mother shows up and moans a lot which will be a reoccurring theme during this series. Although it is quite funny when the Doctor is trying to make small talk with her and accidentally gives her the impression that he & Martha have been up all night screwing each other.
Lazarus enters the room and announces he is about to perform a miracle that will change the coarse of human history. He tells everybody that he is 76 years old and walks into the machine behind him.


Why is there never a big red butt.... Oh wait, there is this time.

The machine is started up, and look it has a big red button. That would please the War Doctor. The machine begins to go haywire and the Doctor is forced to step in before the building blows up.
A much younger man emerges from the machine and tells the crowd that he is Richard Lazarus and he is 76 years old and he is reborn. The Doctor speaks to Lazarus warning him that he couldn't possibly have solved all the variables in the experiment and that if it wasn't for him the place would have exploded but Lazarus and his partner Lady Thaw are dismissive. Martha & the Doctor is horrified when Lazarus & Thaw tells them their plans to have the machine made commercially. Lady Thaw and Lazarus retreat to his laboratory to discuss things, the Doctor says he wants to run his own tests using the DNA from Lazarus where he kissed Martha's hand.


Lazarus reborn, He's 76 you know. Doesn't he look well.

In his laboratory talks to Lady Thaw about growing up the London blitz and that he would feel safe in Southwark Cathedral (There is also a model of the cathedral in his laboratory) . Lady Thaw tells him that she wants to be the next person to use the machine so they can both be young again but Lazarus refuses. When she tells him she'll get his funding cut he begins to have cramps and starts to change form into a giant scorpion creature that looks a lot like David Bowie for some reason and kills Lady Thaw.


Ch-Ch-Ch-Chaaaaanges

The Doctor meanwhile is doing tests and discovers that Lazarus has totally changed his DNA reactivating dormant genes and that they are mutating. He goes to Lazarus's laboratory and finds the skeletal husk of Lady Thaw with all of the life sucked out of her. The Doctor realises that Lazarus needs to do this to keep the DNA stable, Lazarus has since returned to the party in human form. At the party Lazarus is with Tish and taking her to the roof, when the Doctor & Martha are told this they rush off after then, soaking Martha's mother with wine. While she is cleaning herself up a mysterious man offers her a glass of wine and tells her that Martha should choose her friends more wisely.


Mavis from Coronation Street looking a little husky

On the roof The Doctor confronts Lazarus and Lazarus changes form. The Doctor manages to lock him out onto the roof but because Lazarus starts trying to break the door down the buildings security system goes into lockdown shutting everybody inside. At the party the Doctor gives Martha the sonic screwdriver and tells her to get everybody out. He announces to the crowd that they are in serious danger and should leave. A woman tells the Doctor that the only danger in the building is choking on an olive, Lazarus shows up and kills her first. In the credits she's referred to as 'Olive Women' which amused me for some unknown reason.



Olive Woman is about to cop it before we even find out her real name.


The Doctor managed to distract Lazarus by getting him to chase him around the building while Martha gets all the guests out. She goes back in to help the Doctor against her mothers wishes. The man in the suit appears again and tells her mother that the Doctor is dangerous and whispers something in her ear. The Doctor meanwhile sets a trap for Lazarus in his laboratory causing it to blow up but Lazarus escapes, Martha hears the explosion and they both run into the machine, the Doctor saying that it's the one thing that Lazarus won't destroy. While they are trapped in the machine Lazarus switches it on but the Doctor manages to reverse the polarity (Pertwee reference YAY!!) of the machine so it affects Lazarus outside. When they exit the machine they find him lying naked on the floor in human form apparently dead.

Lazarus's body is taken in an ambulance, meanwhile Martha's mother slaps the Doctor's face (A running theme in the new series) The ambulance crashes and the Doctor discovers the ambulance crew drained of life. Using the sonic screwdriver to track Lazarus's DNA he tracks him down to Southwark Cathedral. Lazarus tells him during the blitz he vowed that he would never die and that he will feed to continue his life, the Doctor tells him that he can't allow him to. The Doctor tells Martha and Tish to go to the top bell tower, Lazarus changes and begins to follow them up. The Doctor plugs his sonic screwdriver into the church organ and turns it up to 11 (The first and only Spinal Tap reference in Doctor Who ..YAY!!).


Big bottom, big bottom. Talk about mud flaps, my girl's got 'em


The vibrations cause Lazarus to fall off the bell tower to his death, although Martha who is hanging on for dear life and can't block her ears seems totally unaffected by it ... hmmm lazy writing.


Nudity at 7.35 in the evening? Wait till I write to Points of View about this.

Back at Martha's flat she is preparing to say goodbye but the Doctor tells he she can stay with him. after she departs in the Tardis her mother phones her and tells her that she isn't safe and that Harold Saxon himself says this.

Some trivia : Both David Tennant & Mark Gatiss were also in the BBC's live broadcast of The Quatermass Experiment in 2005, Tennant played the character of Dr. Gordon Briscoe. It was during the rehearsals for this that David Tennant discovered that he had got the role of The Doctor. During the live broadcast Jason Flemyng who was playing the role of Bernard Quatermass ribbed him about this by changed his first line from 'Good to have you back Gordon' to 'Good to have you back Doctor'.

Extra Trivia : Jason Flemyng's father Gordon directed the two Dalek movies in the 60s.

The Lazarus Experiment isn't a bad story as such it's just a bog standard idea with a really bad CGI monster and a really silly ending.
There are a couple of witty bits of dialogue but that's more down to the regular cast and subtle in jokes rather than through the story itself. The only real moments of drama in this are when Tennant & Gatiss are together, Martha is good also in that she's brave & smart but in a kind of generic way that most Doctor Who companions are, although her being a Doctor is shown when she treats her brother for a possible concussion. The rest of her family are just annoying. Her mother is constantly moaning, her sister is just obnoxious and her brother stands around like stuffed suit looking like he's waiting around for his cue to announce who is number one this week.(Her brother is played by former Top Of The Pops presenter Reggie Yates).



This is the kind of stuff the new series does when it's on auto pilot, it's predictable, it's been done to death already and that's just in the Doctor Who universe. In the Peter Davison story Mawdyrn Undead the same topic is used where a race of beings wanting to live forever, and it is covered in a much better way with more plot twists, ideas and peril for the Doctor to overcome than anything this story could manage. There are a few plot elements that would crop up later in the series but they are minimal really. You could easily miss this story out and it wouldn't make a blind bit of difference to the series as a whole.

I can handle Doctor Who being bad, I can handle it having no money, I can even handle really bad special effects but what I really hate is when it's totally devoid of ideas and poor writing. I wouldn't say this story is boring because it's not. I wouldn't even say it's forgettable either. It's just really really predictable and the only reason you'll remember this story is because you've seen it done so many many times before.
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Old 04-12-2014, 05:43 PM   #119 (permalink)
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Boy oh boy am I glad I found this thread to keep me going until Series 8 airs

The Lazarus Experiment is definitely one of those "filler" storylines that pretty much epitomises the badly CGI-ed monsters and predictable endings and so forth (however, at least it's not as bad as The Unicorn and the Wasp...) One thing I did like about the episode was the idea of throwback DNA creating a so seemingly unhuman monster, even if it was slightly ridiculous. In a way it also set up the ongoing suspicion that Martha's family have about The Doctor and the trouble that it will eventually cause in the major plotlines of that series.

I loved Martha as a companion, and it's episodes just like these that never did her justice!

Anyway, really enjoying the thread (that I pretty much just read in its entirety) Love your little references to other aspects of the show... the big red button.
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Old 04-12-2014, 09:09 PM   #120 (permalink)
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I was hoping you'd pop in when you saw this

I have a confession to make.
I quite like the Unicorn & The Wasp, It's one of my guilty pleasures.
I know it's not great but I've always liked stories set in early 20th century and they've not done that many, I can think of 4 off the top of my head.

I loved Martha too, she's easily my favourite female companion since the series came back. She always seemed to me to be the most normal and most true to life person they've had playing a companion.

I'm not sure why they got rid of her so quickly. I've heard a ton of rumours about it from they weren't happy with her standard of acting, to her and Tennant not gelling as much as they hoped, that she was moved to Torchwood because she was contracted for a second series of Doctor Who and they didn't want to pay her for doing nothing.

I know it had nothing to do with Catherine Tate coming in because even before they knew she was available for series 3 they'd already decided to recast the companion and were planning to have him travel with a journalist called Penny. Officially the BBC say Martha was only ever supposed to be in it for that one series and she was only contracted for that.

I guess it'll come out in a few years what really happened, it always does.
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