Monday, 5 April 2010

Dr Who - Review (or...man eats fish custard... and look at you... just sitting there!)


Every one else is having a lil go at writing about the first episode of Dr Who so I thought I'd throw my hat in the ring and say what I thought.

I loved it.  Probably as much, if not more, than Tennant.  Why?  Well Karen Gillan helped.  Quite a bit.

Ok so that's a pretty base response but I actually thought that it worked as a relaunch brilliantly for a number of other reasons.

I should clarify that despite my SciFi geekery I've never been a huge Who fan.  I kinda freaked as a kid at an episode, nightmares and stuff and I think my parents just thought it best if I didn't watch any more of it.  So that was Tom Baker ditched.

The Davidson years I watched quite a bit of.  I had a friend at school, I must have been about 10 or 11, who was a proper Dr Who geek, I watched so that I could converse.  I sort of liked it, but I was always a bit dubious about how crap it all looked.  I was a Star Wars kid.  This looked like it cost a fiver to make and the Daleks never really did it for me.  There was one in a lock up in Newport, on the Isle of Wight, for years that we would peer through a crack in a door at.  It sort of spoilt the myth.  However, there were moments that grabbed me.  Particularly the assistant Perri, who by anyone's standards was pretty fit.

Sensing a theme....?

Colin Baker came and went, thank goodness.  Then came McCoy.  I think this was when I dropped from mild interest to complete disinterest, especially with Bonnie Langford involved.

I watched the Paul McCann TV movie thing in 1996, it was okish.

Eccleston is one of my fave actors but even he didn't fully tempt me back.  Russell T Davies did a great job of Buffying up the scripts and using an arc plot over the course of the season.  Apparently.  When Tennant replaced him there were concerns but he brought the Dr to life as much as Tom Baker did all those years before.

I watched quite a bit of the Tennant years, not all of it admittedly, but what I saw, I quite liked.  This led to watching the last few episodes of Tennant's reign as the Dr.  It was event television, pretty much a rarity these days, a nation gripped etc.

So there you go, I've dipped in and out but Matt Smith's d├ębut intrigued me.  And it was ace.  Steven Moffat has made the dialogue sharper, funnier and most importantly of all non exclusive.  A reboot was, despite all the heartbroken Tennant fans crying, needed.  Although those last few episodes were great TV they relied on the emotional pull of his leaving and played on that hugely.

Smith is young, vibrant and has a sexy new assistant.  He stole his new outfit, got a spanking new Tardis, which, lets face it, has always had the potential to be cool, but never quite got there and by the looks of the trailer he gets some cool ass lines in future episodes, 'If there's one thing you don't trap it's me...' etc.  There's even the promise of vampires.  Sweet.  The close of his meeting with the alien eye ball prison officer(?) was just great TV.  If there's one thing that's always been missing from Dr Who its been that self awareness of a reputation built over time with the planet Earth.  This was nicely dealt with from the get go with his little speech telling them to never return (well 'run away').

If it continues to go down this avenue then I can see more and more people getting into it, including those of us still put off by the possibility of the set falling over.

I am aware that the Tennant years were a phenomenal success and there's a strong chance I would have loved it... maybe I just needed a kissogram in a police uniform eh?  ;-)