Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

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skifflebits
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by skifflebits »

To me it was more a question of the utter spanner in the works Ruth posed to the timeline they went on to suggest with the Pre-Hartnell Doctors.
If Ruth is Pre-Hartnell, then the TARDIS shouldn't be a police box.
If she's post-Hartnell... Then why does she have the old-school console room? Why was she being hunted by... um... that agency whose name I now forget?

Sigh.

Frustrating that these questions have no answers because the production team never bothered to figure them out in the first place.
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skifflebits
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by skifflebits »

And here's the thing: On the whole, I really enjoyed Series 12. I thought it was a big step up from 11. But it stumbled in the final yards because the big revelation just came down to a huge infodump from a scenery-chewing Master, and the Lone Cyberman storyline -- which I thought was interesting -- got dumped by the side of the road.
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Deborah J
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by Deborah J »

Yeah, I'm kind of in the same camp, I really liked s12 on the whole, but they definitely didn't stick the landing. I had thought, until we were told otherwise, that ruth might turn out to be a secret incarnation between 2 and 3, the whole series 6b theory, but I guess that would also have muddied the waters a little, with the number of regenerations the doctor is allowed, though I think maybe it might have been easier to digest for some fans if the timelords had just given the doctor an extra regeneration while they were working as an agent for the timelords, I feel like that would have fitted in quite well with the thrid doctors post regenerative amnesia, and the fact that every appearance of the 2nd doctor after the war games seemed to be set after the war games, he's contacted by the timelords and sent on a mission in both T3D and T2D but doesn't seem too fussed about that despite his terror at the thought of contacting his people in TWG, and then in T5D he remembers the events of the end of the war games despite seemingly being free to travel about. And it would mean we just needed to retcon in one doctor, instead of like a hundred faceless doctors, which for completist types is a lot easier, having a finite and known number of doctors makes it easier to list and catalogue them. Also it would have left Hartnell as the first incarnation, a change I think has upset some, and further fueled those who were actively looking to be upset. I do like the Ruth Doctor, and fun a twist though it was revealing her in Fugitive, I can't help feeling that it was a missed opportunity not just holding her back for a few more years, introducing her in a late Jodie episode and then revealing her to be the next doctor. It seems rather a waste to have her thrown away on such a minor role in the canon.
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Spannerintheworks
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by Spannerintheworks »

skifflebits wrote:
Wed Dec 02, 2020 2:22 am
To me it was more a question of the utter spanner in the works Ruth posed to the timeline they went on to suggest with the Pre-Hartnell Doctors.
If Ruth is Pre-Hartnell, then the TARDIS shouldn't be a police box.
If she's post-Hartnell... Then why does she have the old-school console room? Why was she being hunted by... um... that agency whose name I now forget?

Sigh.

Frustrating that these questions have no answers because the production team never bothered to figure them out in the first place.
Worst part is, I think they thought of them, but decided:

*The show needs to keep the millions who came on board (and slowly tuned out) with Series 11.
*Many of those people probably never watched (or will watch) the Classic Series.
*Many of those people AND New Series fans just know "The Doctor's TARDIS is a Police Box; That's how they know it's the Doctor's. "
*Better to serve the casual viewer to maximize the accessibility of the twist reveal.

If Chibnall wasn't a lifelong, documented fan AND the writer involved that episode I'd be inclined to be less cynical. But this show has swung in the exact opposite extreme from the most Moffat detail-oriented twists (where you almost had to be a regular viewer AND somewhat acquainted with Series lore) to broad, easy details anyone can put together even if they missed several episodes or entire seasons. That works with police drama and "everyday" life type shows (with which Chibnall coincidentally has had the most success with), less so for something with an established mythology and less conventional history.

It's kind of insulting to the fan base that stayed for Series 11/12 too: "Thanks for staying devoted fans, but you're less important than the new viewers that we need to convince to stay - We assume you'll put up with anything.". I can think of several other genre shows that have done this, and it usually has the same result: Alienating the core fan base later in the series' game never works.

Sadly, it wouldn't have been that hard to still make it an impressive twist within canon: The Doctor realizes, say, Ruth's wardrobe or something is a TARDIS. (Already, that reveal alone may have gotten press/fan hype.) Overwhelmed, she enters and tries to check the logs and see how long it's been there and what Time Lord, realizing it's hers (and saying something like "But, this CAN'T be right...") right as a voice says "Hello. I'm the Doctor" behind her.

Still works.
Last edited by Spannerintheworks on Wed Dec 02, 2020 9:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Spannerintheworks
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by Spannerintheworks »

skifflebits wrote:
Wed Dec 02, 2020 3:56 am
And here's the thing: On the whole, I really enjoyed Series 12. I thought it was a big step up from 11. But it stumbled in the final yards because the big revelation just came down to a huge infodump from a scenery-chewing Master, and the Lone Cyberman storyline -- which I thought was interesting -- got dumped by the side of the road.
I mean, those two are admittedly bad, but don't forget the cherry on top:

I spent the WHOLE episode thinking, "OK, this is rough on the Doctor and the Master has an advantage here, but the Doctor will turn it around. She'll do something clever, it's the matrix/panopticon. And the Cybermen. Tons of experience and potential".

(Watches, Doctor literally has nothing. Old guy saves the day and takes ownership of the situation that is, actually, far more "owned" by the person turning tail and fleeing. Her frenemy, her cyber-nemesis, her people and Planet, and her life that supposedly led to this. But no, fleeing.)

(Stares in disbelief) "R-really? It's like a gift to the show's critics..."

Really, her arrest at the end was karma. And on the finale's merits, Graham, Jack and crew are better off with anyone else (or any other Doctor) helping with the Daleks.

Oh, and back to the "Writing female characters bit": Bag on other writers all you like. But it's Chibnall, not them, that wrote a female lead helpless and barely able to free herself IN HER OWN SHOW and then required a male character to bail her out while she had NO clear plan, all while she struggled to do what her male predecessors in the role easily achieved in their finale/Master confrontations. There are ways that this could've given the Doctor an uphill struggle and put her victory in doubt (A second act/midseason loss, or even the Gallifrey reveal in "Spyfall" being something she tries and fails to reverse.). I'm not sure making her look helpless and ultimately in need of saving in the finale (an assist that didn't even build up her companions, no less) could've worked in any way though.

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skifflebits
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by skifflebits »

To be balanced about this, Nine was often accused of sitting by while someone else fixed things, which resulted in Ten's "I'm that kind of man" bravado.
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Spannerintheworks
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by Spannerintheworks »

skifflebits wrote:
Wed Dec 02, 2020 7:36 pm
To be balanced about this, Nine was often accused of sitting by while someone else fixed things, which resulted in Ten's "I'm that kind of man" bravado.
You know, I not only remember this with 9 but I remember WHY it happened: Half of the time it built up Rose (think about it, even in her debut it's how it makes her look good after being wide-eyed and "What?" questions the whole story), half of the time it was a character (like say, Dickens) realizing they weren't useless/were in the wrong/valued something more than themselves changing course and saving 9/Rose as character growth. It's the biggest criticism I can level at Series 1 (Seriously, I think the Doctor only claims a solitary win in "Boom Town", and that was a late replacement.).

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skifflebits
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by skifflebits »

I think RTD was going for the idea that the Doctor empowers other people to do their best, but still, it often made him look less heroic.
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Valeyard
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by Valeyard »

Almost time. Very excited for this special, think it’s gonna be fantastic if the reviews are anything to go by.
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TARDIS23
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Re: Series 12 discussion (SPOILERS)

Post by TARDIS23 »

Anybody watching on IPlayer the episode is already up.

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