Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Dr. Who

With Dr. Who you fit in to one of three categories. Either you love it, you’ve never tried it or you tried it and didn’t like it. If you’ve never tried it before it’s a very easy series to get into; there have been loads of series but once every 3 years the show kind of reboots and reinvents itself. The current doctor is one of the best; he maintains the quirk of the character but unlike Tennant, who never was to my liking really, he’s not a forced eccentric. He also geek chic and awkward charisma nailed which makes the shows infinitely more enjoyable and makes the others around him actions make more sense. The current script is absolutely great aswell; it’s the same man who did the recent Sherlock series and the companions are much better than normal. Karen Gillan plays a feisty man eater and steals the show as she flirts and sarcastically cuts down aliens. The script is genuinely funny and the current overarching plot line leaves a lot of speculation and unanswered questions; it starts at the end as the doctor is killed for good (this isn’t a spoiler at all) and then the series picks up with the past doctor. It might sound confusing but it is handled well.
If you’ve tried it before and didn’t like it here are some things to consider. As I’ve said the series changes, the previous writers eventually ended up creating a kids drama with far too much fan service. This made it hammy and predictable and every episode which had the daleks (half of them) ended up being eye rollingly stupid. Thankfully this has all been corrected with the new series and wisely the doctor hasn’t yet got lazy and just pandered to the audience.
Also, within seasons the quality can fluctuate wildly, it has a structure of two parter stories, one off little dramas and an overarching story holding them all together. If you picked up on say a Christmas special or an off tone standalone show you may have seen something very different. For example in one episode last season the doctor got stranded on Earth for a month and experienced being a normal person. It was entertaining enough and developed his character well but was completely unrepresentative of the programme as a whole.
I promise this series is actually good; I’m not into quirky nerds, British cool or Tom Baker and even if you aren’t a sci-fi fan there’s a lot to enjoy here. I recommend starting with last season simply because that introduces the key players a bit better, most characters have an arch, it’s very good and the twist in the second season (a seriously, seriously good twist) will carry so much more weight.

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