Everytime

and…

Buckets. Everytime.

What is interesting is both of those episodes were written by writers not known for drama. Richard Curtis (Vincent and the Doctor) is most famous for the Blackadder, Bridget Jones Diary, Vicar of Dibley and Love Actually, and Neil Gaiman is most famous for Sandman, Stardust, Neverwhere and American Gods. It is also noteworthy that neither writer was sacred of a sad ending.

The inherent underpinning of great comedy and great fantasy, of great writing no matter the genre, is great heart.

Here is the entire song, one of the rare times they used a popular song, from Vincent and the Doctor:

The New NuWho

In a way I am sorry I watched the leaked footage, because it took away some of the impact. (And the music didn’t really add anything, the themes kind of fell flat.) In a way I am not because I was able to take in more of the nuances this time. The entire layered conversation between the Doctor and the Clockwork Man was beautifully done. I also really liked the way they turned the regeneration on  its ear at the end so the audience got a taste of what it was like from his point of view.

I like how much of a departure this Doctor is from Nine, Ten and Eleven, who were almost always heroic and put the companion’s life first. This one isn’t afraid to let the companion twist in the wind in order to get things done, which promises more drama and jeopardy than in the past. I think this one is going to be more of a schemer than we have seen in the recent past. We can see why Clara almost left him because she simply isn’t used to the Doctor risking her life. But Coleman and Capaldi have wonderful chemistry together. I think he finally makes Clara interesting.

Though I’m not sure how I feel about her being bossy with the Doctor.

As a fan, to me this transition was either smoother or not quite. I can’t figure it out. With Smith there was a whammy moment of getting me on board with him was in “The Eleventh Hour,” his first show.

“You know when grown-ups tell you everything’s going to be fine, and you think they’re probably lying to make you feel better?”

“Yes.”

“Everything is going to be fine.”

That was it. *snap* I was completely on board with Smith’s Doctor. I didn’t have that “whammy moment” with Capaldi where he sucked me in emotionally all at once. My enthusiasm for his Doctor is more intellectual at this point. But then the character is more intellectual. We can see he is not going to be wearing his heart on his sleeve the way Ten and Eleven did. And that, I think, promises to be refreshing. Perhaps a bit more mysterious, which is what the Doctor is supposed to be.

I don’t know why they made such a big deal about Capaldi being older. He’s still hot. Seriously, were he unwed…

The story was good. Not mind-blowing, but solid. (But then most regeneration episodes are solid, not stellar.) I loved the call back to “Girl in the Fireplace.”

Dear Stephen Moffat,

STOP KILLING DINOSAURS!

Damn you! *sniffle*

If Captain Jack and Sarah Jane can get their own show, surely the Victorian Three (I guess they have officially been dubbed “The Paternoster Gang” after the street they live on) deserve one. The three actors all have such wonderful chemistry together, they really are a gift whenever they come onscreen.

“Oi! Married!”

*Hisssss*

I like that they show Jenny isn’t as subservient as she has seemed.

Theatre audiences got a pre-feature bonus of Strax talking the audience through the Doctor’s regenerations under the guise of “Sontoran Strategic Intelligence.” At one point, Vastra and Jenny run up behind him.

“Strax, the ship is going crash into London in ten minutes…Are you blogging?”

“…We have plenty of time.”

Doctor Who Series 8 – First Episode to be Broadcast in Film Theatres

Watch Doctor Who in the Cinema

SWEET! I went to see Day of the Doctor with friends when it was broadcast in theatres last year and it was such a fun experience. Much more exciting that watching it at home. Staying away from the screener plus this will recapture some of that emotional magic.

On a funny note, a friend of mine just bought a horse and was trying to figure out what to name the gelding. I had just watched this the night before.

She did not name him “Susan.” 😦

Speaking of theatre broadcasts, anyone heard anything about the chances of The Crucible being broadcast on Digital Theatre or one of those venues?

Doctor Who – Twelve (No Story Spoilers)

The new series, and Peter Capaldi, premiere August 23rd, but someone leaked a screener version online. It’s in black and white and the effects are not completely finished yet, but they are mostly there and convey the action well enough. The music is “placeholder” stuff pulled from a variety of sources. It’s not Murry Gold’s wonderful scoring yet, which I think lessened some of the emotional impact.

Which is the only part I regret about watching it. Without the score, part of the emotional whammy is gone and I won’t get that with a second viewing. If you want to see it, if you want the surprise spoiled, go see it now before someone yanks it down.

The story is good (I won’t spoil it), and we get to see our favorite Victorian trio (all of whom have wonderful lines) again. We even get to see more of Jenny and Vastra’s relationship, and that Jenny is not as “beta female” as we have been led to believe. There were some lovely shout outs to old stories (including one that is utterly heartbreaking). And yes, they do acknowledge Capaldi’s previous role in “Fires of Pompeii.”

I think Capaldi will be a good Doctor. It felt a wee bit like he was finding his feet with this first episode, but then that is what the Doctor is always doing after a regeneration. That’s actually a great transition mechanism for the actors.

He is going to be a seismic shift for those used to Tennant and Smith’s frenetic performances and how Ten and Eleven were written. The patter does not flow out of his mouth like a broken dam. He is not adorkably cool like Ten, he does not get comically disconcerted as Eleven did. (Or have Smith’s remarkable gift for physical comedy.) He is more measured, more serious. He retains that off-the-wall quality, make no mistake, but he is not as wildly so. He is the Doctor, just not as goofy as his previous two incarnations. He is perhaps a bit darker, perhaps a bit more mature. I would say that Capaldi’s Doctor is not the boys Ten and Eleven were, he is a man. A strange, brilliant, funny, ancient man of wonder. (Speaking of which, we find out that Eleven was around for *quite* a while.) What he does bring is a measure of quiet emotional depth not seen in any of the incarnations of NuWho. I’m not overly familiar with the Classic Who Doctors, but from what I have seen, he is a bit more in the line of Pertwee or McCoy’s Doctor.

And yes, he is Scottish.

Also, eyebrows.

So it is bigger adjustment than the last regeneration, but I enjoyed “Twelve” very much and I am excited to see his adventures.