Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Nothing says Christmas like swordfightin' and robots


Finally, FINALLY, saw "The Next Doctor," the latest "Doctor Who" Christmas special. Enjoyed it thoroughly although I'm afraid I heard so many good things about it before finally getting a chance to watch it, my expectations were unnaturally high and it didn't entirely live up to them. My main problem is that I'm just burned out on the Cybermen. At least last year's Christmas special gave us some new baddies to sink our teeth into rather than just giving us more Cybermen or Daleks or some combination of the two. Although I have to admit, the "Transformer"-style Cyberman in all its towering glory was pretty damn cool.

Beyond my Cyberman fatigue, though, I loved just about everything else. David Morrissey as The Other Doctor gave a great performance -- and I won't spoil the plot for those who haven't seen it yet -- but he did a wonderful job of creating a sad yet heroic character. Every scene between him and David Tennant was terrific. Loved the parallels between the two doctors and Ten's concern for his Morrissey's Doctor. And, gah, the line at the end where Ten admits that ultimately, all of his companions "broke my heart," so sad and so well done.

I'm not quite sure how I'm going to feel about not having one continuing companion for the Doctor in the four upcoming specials. I've always enjoyed those relationships and seeing the stories through the eyes of those other characters. If "The Next Doctor" is any indication of the quality of storytelling we'll be getting during Tennant's last year, then I'm confident we'll be seeing some great stuff. I've decided not to worry and just enjoy the rest of the ride. Especially if there's more swordfighting!

11 comments:

Michele said...

At least *this* year's Xmas episode didn't see everyone who wasn't a white male killed off!!

The two Davids were good, but the entire Cyberman/Hartigan plot was so thin it was invisible. What was her motivation for joining up with the Cybermen? And why were they using orphans in the factory to build the Transformer Cyberman? (Answer because in Rusty's head orphans = Dickens = Christmas!) And my, weren't those orphans clean and well fed??

I liked Rosita - apart from the implication she was a prostitute and that she'd be Jackson's son's nanny afterwards.

The fake TARDIS was cool (although the name was rubbish, even if it was invented by a man who didn't know what the initials stood for).

I still say "The Runaway Bride" is the best Xmas episode Rusty's written.

Elimare said...

Wasn't much impressed with this years Christmas special. Of course with the niece and nephew (3 and 5) asking 'where is Dr Whos TARDIS?' and 'What is that woman doing with the Cybermen?' I didn't get to see much. (My sis and bro-in-law are fans as well so the kids know their Who history.)
Anyway, yeah - thought Dervla was pretty good, but I've never been a big fan of the Cybermen anyway, and there was just something - I dunno - missing from the ep it just didn't sit right. It was all Drama-rama, running, screaming etc (through a re-fitted Torchwood set if you didn't notice) and not so much of Tens wit and humour.

Maybe I'm still pissed at the raw deal that Donna got so I'm expecting them to make it up to me in a big way.

Michele said...

Elimare: Maybe I'm still pissed at the raw deal that Donna got so I'm expecting them to make it up to me in a big way.

I suspect we'll both be waiting a LONG time for that (I am also mad about the way they treated Donna).

Beth said...

Okay, foolish question... how do Americans see The Two Doctors now? I'm so jealous!

Liz said...

Michele, I liked Rosita, too, although that did strike me as weird at the end when he said she'd make a good nanny. Very strange. The fake TARDIS was brilliant and I'll admit I liked the acronym. Anything that ends in "done in style" is okay in my book. I'm 100 percent with you on "Runaway Bride" being the best, though. I could watch that 100 times.

Elimare, I agree about the sad lack of humor in the story. On the other hand, I knew it wasn't going to be too cheery given what the Doctor had just been through. On the other other hand, though, he was in misery in Runaway Bride and they still managed to make that one pretty funny. Of course, he had a cheerier sidekick in that one, too, I guess. Ah well, either way, could have used a few more jokes.

Beth, try YouTube and look for "The Next Doctor." It might have been pulled down already but basically, I just kept searching every day and eventually stumbled on a version. Hope it works for you!

Michele said...

I liked MocDoc (Morrissey fake Doctor) on the whole, but I seriously wanted to slap him, Donna-style, on a few occasions...

Elimare said...

MocDoc - heh I like that.

Michele said...

LOL Thanks! A friend was calling him "MoDoc" as in MorrisseyDoctor, but since I never bought the idea of him being the real Doctor in a later incarnation, I took to calling him "MocDoc" instead (plus it rhymes, and I'm easily amused!)

agent57 said...

AaaaaAAAaaah I can't read the comments (or post?) until I've watched it. BUT I must say, your burn out on Cybermen is how I feel about Daleks sometimes. I know, I know, everyone loves them... but is it really ever a surprise when they show up for EVERY SEASON FINALE. You know what would surprise me? If the Cybermen/Daleks ACTUALLY DIED OUT FOR REAL.

I'm not saying I really want that, but we could do with some originality in the special episodes, maybe? (the one time the finale for the new series hasn't been Daleks, it's been the Master. I don't know, man...)

Michele said...

I'm holding out for a [hero]Trickster (from the Sarah Jane Adventures) as a bad guy in Season 5. Because MAN that dude is scary AND powerful and could really wreak havoc with the Doctor...

And yes, Daleks/Cybermen = bored now!!

Kathe said...

We finally watched this last night. It's been killing me that I didn't have it until now! But I loved it. Brilliantly done. I am SO going to miss Tennant. I looked at the interview with the new Doctor and he seems ok. I'm with you though in the whole denial thing. :)