fajrdrako: (Default)

My computer is dismantled and sitting on the floor of my bedroom, not because it is malfunctioning (which it is), but because I got new furniture: a lovely new desk, which calls itself a Maplewood Writing Table. And my wonderful friends helped me set it up yesterday.

There seems to be no photograph of it online. It has an old-world look with new-tech functions: the large drawer doubles as a keyboard tray, and at the back of the desk there are two plugs and three charging ports for electronic devices.

Between the process of taking down my old massive desk and putting up my new sleek one, we watched The Doctor Who 2013 Christmas Special, which Alayne had not seen. I liked it rather better the second time round; the first time, I was irritated at how little sense it made, and only really enjoyed the bits with Peter Capaldi at the end. And I'm still not sure why the Gallifreyans offered the Doctor extra lives in the end - not that I'm complaining. Transilore may have fallen - I'm not sure the Doctor is the best protector they could have had - but the universe goes on, the Doctor has new kidneys, and Clara stands faithfully by.

fajrdrako: Ninth Doctor - Christopher Eccleston ([Doctor Who])

Watched Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor at Chris's new place with Tim and Sylvie.

Best episode in years.

Things I liked: )
... and looking forward to more.
fajrdrako: (Doctor and Rose)

Every day when I walk to (or from) work, I see someone remarkable... I think I will designate a 'person of the day'.

Monday, it was six people - soldiers doing early-morning manoeuvres, I imagine. I said "Good morning," to them and one replied in kind. They looked a little strained. How far had they been hiking? I took considerable satisfaction in the fact that my back pack was almost as big as theirs.

Tuesday, it was the little boy on the bicycle. He was maybe three years old - four, tops. His bicycle was so little it barely reached my knee. His father was cycling slowly behind him, so the kid set the pace. He was manfully pedalling, slow but steady, not wobbling at all. Go, kid!

Today my Person of the Day was on a skateboard, just whizzing onto the Hurdman foot bridge as I was getting off. A youngish man. He had long blond hair. He wore a black hat, black jacket, black narrow-leg jeans, and black shoes, with neon orange shoelaces and a Hawaiian shirt (glimpsed under the jacket) in bright green, orange, and black. He could have been a Halloween poster, or a comic book character.

Yesterday as I walked home - only a few blocks from my place - someone spoke to me, beyond the customary "hello" one might use with strangers. He asked if the Torchwood patch on my back pack was a reference to Doctor Who. I admitted that it was. I said I was actually an alien in disguise. He replied that my Meat Suit was very good. We chatted about the show a bit - he said he's only watched from the Chrisopher Eccleston shows to the first Matt Smith series, but it's clear he's hooked.

Ahh, fandom. I love the way fans pop up here, there, and everywhere.

fajrdrako: ([Doctor Who] - Jack/Rose)

Last night I watched the Doctor Who episodes "The Empty Child" and "The Doctor Dances", because it happened to be on the SPACE channel when I was having supper with Pim. She's kind to me; she knows it's my favourite Doctor Who story. It's a while since I've seen it, and I loved it again. I didn't even argue with her when she said the story made no sense. I think it makes more sense than most Steven Moffat plots. Things often make no sense to her, that make good sense to me.

And, well, it's the Captain Jack episode, as far as I'm concerned. Captain Jack at his best.

This morning on the bus as I was on the way to work, a mother got on with a child who looked just like the little boy in "The Doctor Dances". The spitting image. Even the same age, and the same hair - and in the episode, his hair was rucked up by the gas mask; I don't know what this little boy's excuse was. He was equally cute.

The illusion that he was a child from the London Blitz was diminished as soon he started to talk. In French. Playing with Matchbox cars on the bus windowsill with his mother.

Speaking of Captain Jack Harkness... did you all see this wonderful story? Aww, made me sniffly just to read it. Then he made me laugh when he dances with Misha Collins, the most mischeivous angel who ever flew:

The article it accompanies, by Stubby the Rocket, is fun; it's called John Barrowman Kisses Everyone. Because he does.

fajrdrako: ([Doctor Who] - 01)
Tonight for Fannish Night we watched the last episode of Doctor Who again, "The Name of the Doctor".

Oddly, it seemed to make less sense than the first time through. I still liked it well enough - some things about it, I loved - but a masterpiece of clarity it is not.

Makes me curious about what is to come, though.

And I really, really like the ending.

fajrdrako: ([Doctor Who] - 01)

Watched the Doctor Who season-ending episode "The Name of the Doctor" this evening.

Now, I've been grumbling about Steven Moffat's storytelling for a while. I have all sorts of gripes with it: plot sof time paradoxes built into ever-twisting halls of mirrors, characters with unsatisfactory endings to their lives and their stories, a Doctor who is randomly childish and wise, irresponsible and noble, clueless and insightful... Steven Moffat stories tend to leave me mildly unsatisfied. Sound and fury but not much sense. And cheap tricks.

So it was a relief to like this one quite a bit. A lot of it made no sense at all, but that didn't get in the way of the story. The mystery of Clara the Impossible Girl was nicely sorted out in a way that reminded me of Rose becoming Bad Wolf in series one: I like both instances, though I was left with the feeling that Clara's life had no intrinsic purpose but to keep the Doctor alive.

So yes, there were more cheap tricks, but also much to love. Seeing the old Doctors. Seeing... the person who isn't Doctor whom we see in the end. The Doctor being actually caring and loving to both River Song and to Clara. Keep this up, and I might actually end up liking River. I particularly liked some of the visual metaphors: the villain with an empty body, the old TARDIS full of vines, the threads of light that are the Doctor's timeline... And it might be the first time that I've believed Mat Smith's Doctor was a real person.

It's possibly the first time since David Tennant that I've thought a Doctor Who story had real substance. (Despite Neil Gaiman's best try.) An interesting episode that quite makes me look forward to the 50th Anniversary show.

fajrdrako: ([Captain Jack Harkness])

An article about Captain Jack Harkness: Captain Jack And River Song Met, Decided They Want A 'Doctor Who' Spinoff. Well, of course they do.

I'd like it too, if only because it's not likely to be the dirge to morosity that Torchwood Miracle Day was. And since the loss of Elisabeth Sladen and The Sarah Jane Adventures, there's a gap to be filled.

Now, I was never, and am not, a big fan of River Song, partly because I saw her as playing the role in Doctor Who that Captain Jack ought to have been playing. Replacing him, in other words. What did she do that he couldn't do better? Nothing that I could see.

Putting them together -- well! It would be like two peas in a pod, but why not? They'd be fun. They'd be loads of fun.

Bring it on.

As for the rest of the article: I don't want to know the Doctor's name, and I'm hoping that episode won't tell us, despite its name. And: why is Captain Jack being left out of the Doctor Who special? I had thought that since Steven Moffat was the first writer to write Captain Jack, that he'd want to include him. Perhaps he sees him as a Russell T Davies creation, and doesn't like the character.

fajrdrako: (Default)

Tonight we watched Doctor Who, "The Rings of Akhaten". We watched it more or less in silence, and when it was over we said to each other: "What was that?"

There was stuff I really liked: Clara. The little girl, whose acting and singing was great. Clara in the TARDIS. I kind of liked some of the hamminess. But...

Is there any way that story made sense? Part of the time I couldn't tell what I was looking at. The villain looked like a fuzzy Jack-o-Lantern. The vampire mummy and his cohorts in the cool coats didn't seem to have anything to do with anything. The Doctor wandered off and left Clara to explore a bazaar on a strange planet on her own, for no obvious reason.

I was perplexed. I kept wondering if my friends were understanding what was going on just fine and I was the only one for whom it didn't make sense, but apparently not. They were talking about 'white man's burden' but my thought was more like, "There's no narrative here... What kind of a plot is this?"

I liked the bits about Clara's background. And the explanation of the leaf in her book.

fajrdrako: (Default)

The trailer for the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special is up: Doctor Who: The First Question.


Now I'm excited.

fajrdrako: (Default)

At last, at last, a new episode of Doctor Who: The Bells of St. John nu Steven Moffat.

Which I enjoyed. I still find Clara Oswin Oswald intriguing. (If they're opting for old Northumbrian kings, I'm still looking for Clara Ooswin Oswald Oswy.)

But... It was another rather incoherent Steven Moffat plot. He seems to go for chaos rather than emotion; confusion rather than clarity; obfuscation.

I was watching with a crowd of things, and it was [livejournal.com profile] gamergrrl who articulated my difficulties with the eleventh Doctor. She said, "It doesn't seem to be so much the Doctor as a parody of the Doctor."

Of course, I expected Clara Oswald to die again. She keeled over a few times, but that wasn't death, that was temporary mind transfer. Or something.

I miss Nine dreadfully, but I'm looking forward to seeing what happens next week...

fajrdrako: (Default)

From Wired:

    As of today Steven Moffat has confirmed that he is completing a script that will feature the current Doctor, Matt Smith, facing a foe so great that he will need assistance from all ten of the previous TARDIS inhabitants. That’s right, rumors say Eccleston is in!!! The producers have gotten agreements from all living actors who have ever played the Doctor; Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, Paul McGann, Christopher Eccleston, David Tennant, and Matt Smith. With some studio special effects they have even resurrected William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton, and Jon Pertwee.
I love the way they can bring them back from the dead. The Spiritualists of Arthur Conan Doyle's day would be so envious.

This sentence caught my attention:

    Every decade since the inception of Doctor Who there has been some sort of anniversary special that pays homage to the previous Doctors.

Is that true? I thought there was nothing at all between the episode with the Eighth Doctor in 1996 and the Ninth Doctor in 2005.

fajrdrako: (Default)

I just watched this scene from Doctor Who, series 4, from "The Doctor's Daughter", which - as I mentioned recently - was one of my favourite episodes.

"Let's find a new world. For her."

What a wonderful scene! Donna really shines in it. I wonder which scene was aired in its place.

fajrdrako: (Default)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 30: The moment you fell in love with Doctor Who.

Not a moment, exactly, but an episode.

I'd already come to love the Doctor himself because of his wonderful speech to Rose in Rose, which I've already quoted here:

    Do you know like we were saying? About the Earth revolving? It's like when you're a kid. The first time they tell you that the world's turning and you just can't quite believe it 'cause everything looks like it's standing still. I can feel it. [He takes Rose's hand.] The turn of the Earth. The ground beneath our feet is spinning at 1,000 miles an hour and the entire planet is hurtling around the sun at 67,000 miles an hour, and I can feel it. We're falling through space, you and me, clinging to the skin of this tiny little world, and if we let go... That's who I am.

I fell in love with the show, above and beyond just loving the protagonist, with the episode Dalek. I'd heard about Daleks, of course, but I'd never seen them before. And I was under the impression still that Doctor Who was a show full of silly monsters and improbably situations - the first few episodes I saw here did nothing to make me change my mind.

The: Dalek. Nuances. Shades of meaning. Ideas beyond cliches. Characterization of heroes, bystanders, villains, and monsters. A plot which changed the main characters, and changed the situation, and changed the tenor of the show.

Doctor Who does not always live up to the potential I saw in that episode, but it had met the mark more often than I dared to expect.
fajrdrako: (Default)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 29: A character you didn't like at first, but came to like.

Donna Noble.

In "The Runaway Bride" she was stupid and annoying. On all subsequent appearances, she was wonderful.

I didn't like the way her story ended.

fajrdrako: (Default)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 28: Favourite character who appears in one episode.

Jenny, the Doctor's daughter.

From episode 4x06, "The Doctor's Daughter", of course. I loved that episode. I loved Jenny, and thought it was great to see Nigel Terry. I loved the way Donna related to both Jenny and the Doctor, and tried to reconcile them, and to find out about the Doctor's past. I loved Jenny's personality, her talents, and her fate. I loved it that Martha was in the episode, too, and did her part towards creating the peace.

I love it that Jenny is out there somewhere in the universe, having her Time Lord adventures.

I've always hoped we'll see her again.

fajrdrako: ([Doctor Who] - 01)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 27: Favourite special.

Time Crash. It isn't one of hte long Christmas Specials, it's the Children in Need 2007 Special, less than eight minutes long, packed with humour, irony, character, and theme. Complete with the frowny face, time paradox, universal emergency, a decorative vegetable, wibbly-wobbliness, and the brainy specs.

Steven Moffat at his best. If you want to see it, click on the picture.

fajrdrako: (Default)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 26: Favourite companion's family member.

Jackie Tyler.

I can't think of anything I didn't like about Jackie. Some favourite Jackie moments:

- trying to help Rose in "The Parting of the Ways" by consoling her
- slapping the Doctor in "Aliens of London"
- believing in the ghosts in "Army of Ghosts"
- flirting with the Doctor in "Rose"

fajrdrako: (Default)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 25: Favourite TARDIS team.

Don't even need to pause to think about this one.

The Doctor, Captain Jack and Rose, from "The Empty Child" to "The Parting of the Ways".

They were perfect.

fajrdrako: (Default)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 24: Favourite accessory of the Doctor.

The Doctor has so many wonderful things. The TARDIS goes without saying; so does the sonic screwdriver. I don't want to say anything so obvious.

So I will choose that wonderful, wonderful notebook he had to make notes and to doodle in: The Journal of Impossible Things from episode 3.8, "Human Nature":

fajrdrako: ([Doctor Who] - 01)

30 Days of Doctor Who: Question 23: Something epic.

The two-part story "Army of Ghosts" and "Doomsday", from series 2, episodes 12 and 13.

Why epic? Why do I like it? Because:

- Cybermen and Daleks
- good personal stuff with the Doctor and Rose
- Torchwood
- Drama, not to mention the Fate of the World
- London
- Daleks and Cybermen, with some really witty dialogue, like:

    Cyberman: Your design is inelegant.
    Dalek: Daleks have no concept of elegance!
    Cyberman: This is obvious.


    Cyberman: Daleks be warned. You have declared war upon the Cybermen.
    Dalek: This is not war! This is pest control!

- Bad Wolf Bay and heartbreak

I'm burning up a sun just to say good bye.


fajrdrako: (Default)

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