September 27, 2015
Sit back and get a little comfy. I'm going to blather on about my disappointment in the new season of Doctor Who, which feels almost sacrilegious, but necessary. Maybe if I purge myself, I'll enjoy the show more.
So… as mentioned before, I'm not a huge fan of Capaldi as the Doctor. This has nothing to do with his acting. I enjoy his work. But… here's the thing… I just can't get past the fact he's been two other characters besides the Doctor in the Whoverse—Caecilius in The Fires of Pompeii and John Frobisher in Torchwood: Children of Earth.
But wait! What about Eve Myles? She played a character in Doctor Who before being in Torchwood. Why doesn't that bother me?
One simple reason. The character she played in The Unquiet Dead, Gwyneth, by rights, could have been an ancestor of Torchwood's Gwen, so… my brain has no problem wrapping around the idea. But Capaldi's characters? Not so much. Wanna know why?
Because THE DOCTOR doesn't have ancestors on earth. Even if I bought the idea Caecilius—a social climbing Roman—could be the ancestor of John Frobisher—the man who learns ass-kissing doesn't always pay off and can, instead, bring a tragic end, I can't buy the idea they're somehow related to the Doctor. EVER. It's just a big, fat NOPE.
Again, because the Doctor doesn't have ancestors who are human, with the exception of maybe Ten and Rose in the alternate universe. So, yeah, I struggle—a lot—to get into Capaldi as the Doctor.
And while I'm on the topic, let's chat about Missy the Master. Hooray for having a woman Master. Seriously, I love the idea and think it's wonderful. That said, the way she's written is a big, fat disappointment.
Staying strictly with New Who, I wouldn't want to be the actor who had to fill the big shoes John Simm left behind after playing the Master. Michelle Gomez did a superb job in the previous season and I would have been thrilled to bits if that would have been the end of the Master's manipulations.
But, of course, it's not. We open the season with two full episodes of her. Bleh. And it's not the actress, in my opinion, it's the writing. Simm's version had a terrific arc to show how he became insane, why he did the things he did, and finally, a thread of redemption.
But Missy? Eh, she's a little too over the top, yet… at the same time a little too shallow and look at me, look at me, look at me, to be believable. And maybe that's the point, but it's not one I'm enjoying in any way, shape, or form. The apparent I'm just here to screw with the Doctor and have fun while doing it doesn't interest me. And that's the way her role in the Whoverse comes across for me. She serves no other purpose than to muck things up for the Doctor. Don't we have all the other monsters and villains for that purpose?
Finally… let's take a look at this Doctor. The War Doctor made a comment about having a mid-life crisis when he got a look at Ten and Eleven and their young visages. So, awesome, we have an older guy for this regeneration. Should be great, right? Eh, not so much. For a more mature version, Twelve is certainly getting in tune with his inner child.
I guess I'm not thrilled with the idea Twelve brings an electric guitar and a tank to his battle with the medieval-looking opponent. Because honestly? The incredibly stupid jokes that people will get in a few hundred years were too lame to be humorous. Personally, Nine, Ten, and Eleven had a higher mental age than the current Doctor, who runs toward temper tantrums and super snit fits. Don't get me wrong, he's got some amusing moments with both, but it may not be enough to sustain my interest.
Do I take this Whoverse stuff way too seriously? Oh, hell yes, I do. LOL But… I miss the continuity of the earlier Davies seasons. The sweeping emotional arcs we got in a single episode sometimes. And Moffat is more than capable of writing that way. I mean Blink is one of the most emotional roller coaster episodes I've EVER watched on TV, so he's got the chops to connect with me on that level… when he's not trying to be too quirky or clever or whatever the hell he's trying to be with the gimmicky shtick he's been throwing out lately, especially with the two opening episodes of this season. They were disjointed and messy and I'm honestly not sure what I was watching, but it's not the Doctor Who I love.
And no worries if anyone vehemently disagrees with me. I'm totally okay with the rest of the planet loving the Doctor as much as they always have. I'm just not quite there yet—maybe I never will be—but I'm hoping Moffat rises to the challenge of keeping me as a viewer.
Whew. I feel WAY better now. Thanks for letting me vent.
As an aside, I did read the concept that the familiar faces of Caecilius and Frobisher would be explained sometime this season, but truthfully, unless it's super brilliant—and it totally could be—I'm still going to have big issues wrapping my head around the idea. So yeah, there's that.
And for now, I'll keep watching—because I've had a lifetime of Classic and New Who.