On The Sofa (5)

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    Rob @rob


    Echoes the above “missing you and hope all is well posts”

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord


    Excellent idea to gather musings on the finale. I’m sticking with my wish for Missy to be the idea of Death, or rather the Guardian of Life and Death. I think it fits in well with the series as a whole, and I can’t help thinking that the consequences of that new surge of life in Time of the Doctor would make an excellent story.

    I’m really interested in what kind of structure we’ll get. This is the first double-part finale we’ve had since Series 5, Smith’s first series and The Pandorica Opens / The Big Bang were really different in approach. I also think that final episode was really where Matt Smith presented all the facets of his Doctor with that standout scene with his bedtime story to young Amelia. I think if you consider the mad imagination of The Wedding of River Song and the epic fanboy thrills of Name of the Doctor, you have to hand it to Moffat – he really isn’t predictable.

    I do have that familiar rush of blood to the head.

    Anonymous @

    I love Doctor Who. It’s a great show.

    However: I feel that over the last two years the show has become poorer in quality (sad to say).

    So why do I think this? Well the writing for a start. Until very recently I have been a strong defender of Steven Moffat. Yet I find that he focuses on the wrong things and is a repetative writer. My other problem with the show is it’s format/structure. Let’s delve into these two burning issues (sorry).

    Moffat focuses on long story arcs that intertwine (p.s. my spelling and grammer are atrocious) throughout many series concerning the Doctor and his companions. He forgets that how to write individual episodes without breaking up the stories or stitching a mystery ending on. Plus, he seems more concerned with obescure time travel arcs that when unravelled never really add anything to (what I am starting to consider) underdeveloped characters and turn out to be rather boring. Plus, the characters aren’t really characters anymore. They’re all sewn into the plot and never impact anything themselves. They’re like internet memes or catchy slogans but nothing more. Having giant arcs that everyone is destined to in a show about unlimited possibility really constricts the shows scale. It makes the Doctor’s world feel small, with boundaries.

    The structure of the show encourages underdeveloped episodes and weak plots. Forty five minutes is not enough time to explore a new world, characters, dilemma, possible moral crisis and solution/resolve. Bring back the two-parters, three parters and/or four parters (I would say no more than that but it’s down to the script really). Our attention span can handle it.

    Some solutions.

    Do away with arcs. Have character arcs (like in series one when Bad Wolf was just a vale for the real arc. That the Doctor makes people better. Notice how the 9th Doctor never saved the day in the end or couldn’t without the help of someone they met).

    Focus on people met on adventures to give individual stories more sustonance.  This would add to the power of the Doctor.

    Be creative with the dilemma of the week. Does it have to be a monster or alien invasion. What about a story where the Doctor explores a culture or society.

    Explore genres and stick to them.

    Develop the companion and the Doctor. More mystery to the Doctor. More of a journey for the companion. Don’t have them run onto the TARDIS and immediately become fully developed like Clara was.


    New monsters. Give old monsters a break. I realise that the Terry Nation Estate owns the Daleks which means they have to be in the show every year. This is a real shame because they’re loosing there impact fast. Send them out with a bang (literally if you want) and then just give them to the Estate. They’re one of the best sci fi creations of all time and I don’t want to see myself yawning when they’re on screen.

    The Doctor should not be the one focus of the show.

    Either have families or don’t.

    Less gadgets saving the day. More thinking.

    Gimmick monsters are awesome but not all the time.

    Tackle relevant world issues like the sow used to do.

    Well, I’ve exhausted myself of ideas. If your head feels like a bag of gravel after reading this then I apologise. I really do love the show. I only want to address these issues because im afraid i’ll stop watching it soon.

    Thank you.



    He forgets that how to write individual episodes without breaking up the stories or stitching a mystery ending on.

    He forgets nothing of the sort. He is simply a student of the very best American serial drama (from Buffy through Veronica Mars to Person of Interest with many stops in between). Each episode has an A plot, a B plot and usually a C plot. The season arc will only occasionally be the A plot and sometimes only the C plot.

    A, B and C will be (1)Monster of the Week, (2)Arc and (3)episode or seasonal metaphor (again, each week the mix will be different). Think of the Buffy episode Normal Again, which was 95% metaphor, 1% arc and 4% MoW.

    Give old monsters a break.

    I find it staggering that you haven’t realised how sparing Moffat is with classic monsters (and the outcry when he appeared to say he was giving the Daleks a rest).

    New monsters this season alone:

    – The robots in Robots of Sherwood

    – The unknown monster from Listen (which might just be the id monster from Forbidden Planet)

    – The Teller

    – The Skovox Blitzer

    – The Moon Dragon

    – GUS

    – The Boneless

    – The Tree Dudes of London

    From this I conclude that you should spend less time opinionating and more time paying attention. Perhaps you should stop Tweeting while the episode is on, so that you might miss less.

    Moff writes high attention span stories and is not especially interested in giving sops to the slowest person in the room. Much like Professor Walsh in Buffy, he talks fast, sets a lot of work, does not takes questions and expects you to keep up.

    Long may he reign. Although hopefully not a a ‘build a monster-human hybrid cyborg’ kind of way.


    Well. So much for the Enlightenment.

    DrBen @drben

    @TheCrackInTheWall – You are, of course, entitled to your opinion.  I want to point out however – as @pedant did eloquently and in greater detail – that much of what you complain about in Moffat’s style is precisely what many of us likely about the show under his supervision.  As much as I enjoyed the first four seasons, I was getting tired of the disconnected “Monster of the Week” episodes that were essentially (a) meet a monster, (b) run away from the monster, (c) figure out something clever and hand-wavey to defeat the monster.  I think Moff’s tenure has expanded the potential of the show considerably.

    Also, put me in the camp of those who say that this season is the best yet.  Only two stinkers in my opinion (Into the Dalek & Kill the Moon) which is a pretty low percentage of stinkers for a season.  The season arc mystery has been tantalizing without taking over the overall story.  The plots have provided avenues for interesting character development.  Capaldi’s performance is a joy to watch.  Clearly, the Danny/Clara relationship is worth of discussion, as we are talking it to death here.

    Then again, you shouldn’t trust me, because my other favorite is season 6 (River Songapalooza), so what do I know? 🙂

    BadWulf @badwulf


    All good points! (I have the box set of Buffy, but I’ve only got as far as the middle of season 2 – I presume it is worth continuing with?

    I have found that many newer TV shows work better and feel more coherent when I can binge watch them. Doctor Who is really the only thing I watch on TV now as it airs (aside from Strictly, which Ms BadWulf is rather fond of).

    Perhaps @TheCrackIntheWall , your perspective on the current storytelling would be different if the show was watched over a much shorter period of time?

    BadWulf @badwulf

    @drben It’s funny, I have only thought KtM was a true stinker this season, and have certainly enjoyed all the other episodes, but weirdly, according to my number crunching, unless the last two stories average more than a 3 on my rating scale, this will be my lowest rated AG season, excluding the Tennant specials!



    (I have the box set of Buffy, but I’ve only got as far as the middle of season 2 – I presume it is worth continuing with?

    Oh God, yes. You don’t know what it is, what’s to come. You haven’t even begun (you will know that reference when you get their 😉 )




    PS  You haven’t even met Faith yet. Faith rocks.



    River Songapalooza

    This should be submitted to the OED as a synonym of “Totally Rocks, Dude”.

    thommck @thommck

    @janneteb Love your idea that Danny and the Doctor are  related. That is much more interesting to me than Clara being related. They haven’t interacted much but they certainly seem to be able to rub each other the wrong way, like only family members can! Perhaps he is Susan’s grandson?

    Anonymous @


    I haven’t watched Buffy and have no intention of doing so. I dont tweet and I have full understanding of the plot. There’s not much too it mate. Majority of the monsters are forgettable (with the exception of the boneless).

    If you want to patronise me for having differing opinion then bring it on.

    Give me a metaphor for each episode or each series.


    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip


    Series 5, 6 and 7 follow the path of the classic comedy – in that they each start with a situation of discord and end with a situation of healing and wholeness.

    Series 5 and 6 both have a traditional Shakespearean comedy ending; the warring couple (Amy and Rory in Series 5, their daughter River and the Doctor in Series 6) end up getting married. Series 7 ends with a (re) birth.

    Metaphor for the Smith Doctor: the Doctor is convinced his life is a tragedy. Actually, he’s playing the starring role in a comedy.


    AleX @alex

    Hi there, my first post on this forum! I’ve been reading your comments for the past 2 weeks now and I’m just amazed on how everyone here knows so much about Doctor Who! The theories and comments here are so brilliant and you all really delve in all aspects of Who!


    Well, let me introduce myself i’m a 25 year old Brazilian, started watching Doctor Who about 1 year ago in Netflix, and after two seasons I was HOOKED! I’ve burned trough every single episode (and specials) of the AG series in about 3 months, after that I even rewatched most episodes at least one more time after I introduced it to my girlfriend!


    I’m just amazed how smart this series and the Doctor are! (and i’m not even a big sci-fi fan), now i’ve been taking on the very hard  but pleasant task of watching all the BG stories I can find. Since here in Brazil is just impossible to get any classic who series on DVD and there’s none on Netflix, i’ve been downloading what I can find. I’ve already finished watching every complete stories (don’t really like the recons) of the first doctor and i’m on the second Doctor stories (finished The Mind Robber today), plus I already watched The Three Doctos and The FIve Doctors specials, and seriously how great is the second doctor?  In my book he’s top notch right there with Tennant’s doctor! Not gonna comment anything about the current series yet, but I can say I love Capaldi’s take on the role, you can really see he’s having the time of his  life on the part! Can’t wait to get to the Fourth Doctor stories though, specially the Douglas Adams phase (he’s one of my favorite autohrs of all time alongside Tolkien), but before that I have to cover at least the best Jon Pertwee stories!

    Anyway, just wanted to say thanks to you all, i’ve learned a lot about Doctor Who on this forum and I gonna try to add something to your discussions!


    P.S. Sorry for any spelling or grammar errors, I never had anyone to teach me english so I just learned it by myself!

    Rob @rob



    Woke up with Missy ( not literally) as Prisoner Zero

    Wow bonkers dreaming

    PaperMoon @papermoon

    I’m having fun reading all of people’s theories on where the series is going.

    @drben – love your theory, fantastic!, as 9 would say.

    @janetteb – interesting, that helps to link up the three characters, as you know I seem to have a bee in my bonnet about Danny, for some reason I find the character interesting. I’ve also wondered if we were ever going to see some kind of Susan story. We’ve never really found out much about the Doctor’s family – a glimpse of his mother, I thought, when he was given his sentence just before 2 regenerated into 3 and maybe there was another time, but I can’t remember what episode or even which Doctor.

    @Margaret-Blaine – I like the Valeyard theory and it does tie in the whole glimpses of the dark side of the Doctor we get. I’m thinking of The Waters of Mars here, there are probably other examples though.

    If we are going to suggest old foes then I’ll throw – Missy is the Dark Guardian – into the mix. He has been defeated by the Doctor before and has used intermediaries to get to the Doctor. But, I prefer the Valeyard theory to be honest.

    As for the overall arc mystery, I like the ‘it’s all happening in Clara’s head’ one. The first time I saw the fantasy-type episodes, I didn’t really like them. But seeing them again through this lens they started to make more sense, and I can see how they work in the overall arc of the season. But as all know, Moffatt has probably thought up a far more twisted and intricate plot than that.



    There’s not much too it mate.

    I look forward to your towering contribution!

    Give me a metaphor for each episode or each series.

    I see @bluesqueakpip has already dealt with the meta

    Series 5: Abandonment, loss and the search for family;

    Series 6: Protection of family and the building of bonds;

    Series 7: Growing up and coming to terms with the past.

    Series 8: The story is not told yet, but my guess is where does “real” begin?

    If you want to patronise me for having differing opinion then bring it on.

    If I want to patronise you, then you will know all about it. That was just a light flambé for the inattentive whinger.

    Your choice not to watch Buffy is a loss for you, and you alone.

    beancounter @beancounter

    I don’t believe Missy is Death, the Ferryman or the Grim Reaper, as the people she greets are random. Not all of the people who die on DW (this season) show up there.
    I’m guessing she’s an extra-dimensional being who is able to selectively “capture” souls, or a beings essence (for some yet to be discovered purpose). I’m also guessing that Clara is someone who died, and Missy transferred her essence in a new body to keep track of the Doctor for some reason.

    Spider @spider

    @beancounter, yes you are right in that the people Missy meets are random and not all the people who die on DW show up there – however, this is only what we have been allowed to see, it may be there is far more going on and we just haven’t seen it on screen. In the Caretaker episode Seb does reference that they have ‘had a few in’ from the stovax blitzer? (or whatever the bloody robot is called, I can never remember) and we don’t see them, only the one Policeman. So that points to there are people showing up that did die during the course of an episode, just we didn’t see. So for me I’m still thinking that Missy as Death/ferryman etc. is still a possibility. But, whatever she ends up being I think it’s going to be very interesting! 🙂



    beancounter @beancounter


    I just hope it’s not River Song in some other form.

    Anonymous @


    I can see that I’ve upset you.

    Anonymous @


    I though Into the Dalek and Kill the Moon were alright. What were your opinions on Robot of Sherwood and The Caretaker?


    AGoldsmith @agoldsmith

    I’m not sure how to post new topics on here I wanted to start on for lookalike. Sadly I’m a little slow with computers.

    I was looking around the internet and I found this guy! He looks like David Tennant!

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    The Finale…at Halloween! And promising to be suitably creepy!

    My final prediction is…my original prediction. Missy as Master. @drben wisely pointed out that Moffat only tends to draw on BG Who if it is pre-JNT. He generally avoids RTD as well. All this narrows it down a bit. No, I stick with Missy as Master. It won’t be River for the simple reason that River has always been, and always will be, on the side of the angels…but not the Weeping Angels!

    No, Missy is clearly evil, and, in the clips, almost Roger Delgado-like in mannerisms.

    My only adjustment to my prediction is that Clara, who I still believe will turn out to be the Doctor’s daughter (watched “The Caretaker” again last night and it is obvious!), won’t be revealed as such in the finale, but probably in the christmas special (not a dry eye in the house!)

    Enjoy the show, and feel for us poor CWCs (colonials without cable) who have to wait for iView tomorrow.

    Anonymous @
    DrBen @drben

    @TheCrackInTheWall – I liked them.  Robot of Sherwood was silly fun, and the Caretaker was necessary to establish parts of the Clara/Danny dynamic.  Neither are my favorites of the season (those go to Listen and Time Heist), but they’re good episodes.

    My primary complaint with Into the Dalek (the only episode I actively disliked) is that none of it made any sense from a motivational context — If you’re at war with the Daleks, why take an injured one onboard?  Once you’ve determined that it’s gone “good”, why try to fix it?  And why didn’t the Doctor realize that once he succeeded in fixing it, they would have a killing machine on their hands?  Just stupid.

    My only issue with Kill the Moon was that I was half paying attention while doing something for work and it didn’t thrill me, although Clara’s outburst at the end was great.

    Also – LOVE that 9th Doctor tribute.  Man I miss him.



    You wish, dear child, you wish.

    Spider @spider

    Times when you know you are far too obsessed….

    Had a rather vivid and vaguely disturbing dream last night that woke me up in the middle of the night, general apocalyptic badness, cities bombed, oh no where is the family, must find people, running round, angry mobs etc. And at one point in the dream while running away from some angry looting mob I distinctly remember thinking “I really hope this is a dream, otherwise I’m going to miss the next episode of Doctor Who”.

    So, it would seem my subconscious is more worried about missing an episode than the fact there was an apocalypse :o.

    And as if that weren’t bad enough, when I got back to sleep ended up having a second dream – one of those you are trying to go somewhere or find something but never seem to manage to do it because you get distracted. Someone in my dream was flicking through a magazine and said something about “Oh there’s a new episode of Doctor Who on!” and me, running past this in my dream looking for whatever object I couldn’t find shouting: “No! Don’t tell me! Don’t tell me. Spoilers!”

    I look forward to discovering what my brain comes up with when I go to sleep tonight 🙂


    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @Spider- I have very similar dreams. A while ago I was on a hilltop surveying the spread of the apocalypse (it had begun as a game of monopoly when I was at school) thinking ‘we’ll it does rather take the pressure off, but I’ll never discover what was the deal with Clara.

    Anonymous @

    @agoldsmith and @alex welcome to the Forum  -great ideas AGoldsmith and a very true DT look-a-like AleX.

    @spider and @miapatrick I too have those dreams & I assumed I was the only one!

    Spider @spider

    @miapatrick and @purofilion  also glad it’s not just me XD

    Now. If we all end up having the SAME dream tonight…that would be weird 😉


    Anonymous @


    Haha. Your an idiot.

    Anonymous @

    @TheCrackInTheWall I think some of your points are valid but on the whole I would add that Clara and other characters are quite mysterious and confusing -we don’t really know all there is to Clara and certainly, since last season, her character has developed -but there are layers to her we haven’t peeled away. The Doctor is very mysterious and not yet filled out. In fact, is he ‘a good man?’ Yes, he’s grumpy, but there’s more to him than that and, like Clara, he’s being developed every episode. As for the new characters, they too are developed and have an impact on the story line and the way the story itself  is written and progresses each week.  Strax, Jenny and Vastra certainly helped develop Clara and turned a mirror back on to the character herself.

    In The Robots of Sherwood we saw Robin become a very intricate character -not simplistic and we learnt that his laughing and banter had a purpose. Gretchen’s character was interesting, mysterious and her contribution is certainly not over yet -it’s just begun.

    Similarly, we’ve had Danny as a real focus dealing with real-life ideas and relationships: the Drs relationship with Clara echoes her relationship with Danny. In other words, “The Doctor should not be the one focus of the show”  has not really been the case. In the last episode, the children were the focus as was the dramatic relationship between Dan and Clara. After all, it’s fantasy/ sci-fi; but the show, since inception, has concentrated on detailing the relationships and the consequences of the decisions the characters have made.

    I guess I am concerned that you want ‘everything’. For example you want more monsters that are new but make sure they’re not “gimmick monsters”. Are the Robots of Sherwood, gimmicks? The Blitzer? The scary monster under the bed that made Fear a ‘superpower’? I think that’s a powerful statement rather than just a ‘monster’. In that respect, ‘Listen’ was a marvel.

    Plus, the characters aren’t really characters anymore. They’re all sewn into the plot and never impact anything themselves.

    Did you think Maebh wasn’t a character that ‘impacted’ on anything? I think her story arc, in 44 mins, showed just how central a character she was! She changed the outcome. Completely. Robin of Sherwood also saved the day, the Dr and Clara, and ultimately blew up the machine disguised as a medieval castle.

    Did I mention Dan??

    Missy herself is the main mystery. Her veil is just about to drop. Her creation and ‘impact’ will be enormous I predict.

    Anyway, I hope you do get time to read this. It might change your mind, Or not!

    Kindest, puro


    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    Oh dear. Another late one for me, come in for some light conversation to cheer me up. Something to get me even more excited for the finale.

    Perhaps not.

    @pedant @thecrackinthewall

    I strongly urge you to take a step back from your keyboards at this point. In fact, I’m going to insist on it. The exchange remains, and I’ll look at it again tomorrow, when the big old red button of deletion doesn’t look quite so tempting.

    Any further provocations and I’ll cheerily ask @craig to delete both of you.

    Anonymous @

    @alex -did I mention your English is brilliant!  I didn’t see much of the 2nd doctor but the Mind Robber was terrific. I liked Pertwee he was probably my first Doctor and then Dr Tom. After that, as I grew up, there were other things that I became entranced with -like Star Trek (eerm). Anyway, once Eccelston returned I (eventually) was re-united with Who. Long may it continue!

    Anonymous @

    also, last night as I was grumpily picking up MrIlion from hospital for a minor procedure, I couldn’t understand why there were people, in black, dangerously stepping into traffic carrying glow sticks!  Halloween! See, in Oz, we don’t really ‘celebrate’ it. Worse, I left all the lights on which, apparently, is an invite to all the kiddies seeking lollies. Thing is, there were at least 5 or 6 groups of 20 people -half, adults. Mind you, I guess it’s not safe wandering around in semi-darkness anymore but my area is very quiet suburbia: the roads are huge, there’s road bumps to slow traffic and massive footpaths. Most, own homes so rentals are limited. Still, safety first I guess. How could I miss Halloween?? @janetteb have you had the odd ‘knock on the door faced with scary face last night?’ @serahni how about you? Anyway, Happy All Saints Day; which, conveniently is connected to tomorrow’s finale 2-parter and the return of….I’m not sure!

    Kindest, puro.

    Spider @spider

    All saints day! ohh I hadn’t made that connection, nice one @purofilion. Now I’m probably going to have some sort of manic dream about that 😉 *kidding*! Or…am i 😮



    Spider @spider

    Ok for the record of musings on the finale. I don’t think Missy is the Master, I think she is some sort of Death minion of some…type. Really would like there to be some new big bad we haven’t seen before.

    Clara, that I just can’t decide. So many things! Evidence obviously points towards her being some sort of pawn? in Missy’s plan. But what that is all about I really don’t know.

    Need. To. See. Episode!

    I’m going to be an unbearable bouncing off the walls idiot all of Sat … must find distractions!


    Anonymous @

    @spider  you can’t possibly bounce ‘off the walls’ -you’re a Spider!  How about…scuttling…now, that’s my nightmare. Scuttling spiders. One day (this was like 30 years ago), I had a dream about music, specifically guitars. I then woke up to hear my guitar, sitting in the corner, playing by itself. For a few seconds, I thought “this is pleasant” then, coming to my senses went “WTF”, turned on t’light and saw a gi-normous spider walking over the strings. That was it…bounced out of bed…grabbed pillow and blanky and slept upstairs on d’sofa.  Then there’s cockroaches. Amazingly, in the last 13 years of this newish house, we’ve had neither. Though we have had amazing numbers of ants….can’t leave a sticky glass out all day…ants.  Aarrgheeeuw.

    AleX @alex

    @purofilion – Thanks for the compliment! I’ve seen only his stories that are complete + web of fear, still 4 more stories to go, but I just love how Troughton has such subtlety to his body language when acting, his doctor pretends to be soft but I think he is the most cunning doctor i’ve seen so far, really brilliant acting!

    From what i’ve seen from Pertwee on the Three Doctors and The Five Doctors I liked him but didn’t thought he was that brilliant, I’m not judging yet since I  haven’t seen any stories of him on his own!


    9 was my fist doctor, so I’m suspicious to say something about him, I really love his personality, but Ecclestone has some really poor scripts to work with and that’s a shame because in good episodes like Dalek, the episodes with the gas mask zombies and the three part finale you can really see him shine! But over time Tennant grew more on me than him! I just loved his doctor (don’t really like the romantic side though). For me so far from what i saw I would rank 10, 2, 1 (didn’t like him at fisrt, but he grew on me over time and his farewell speech to Susan is one of the best speeches the doctor ever gave!) and 9 as amazing,  8(I really like Mcgann and his take on the doctor, but the movie is kinda bad overall)  3 and 11 as great (I like him, but sometimes I don’t,  kinda have a love and hate thing going on with eleven, but I blame that on Moffat and specially Series 7 actually,), 12 is great but I think he can become one of the best ever if his stories help him! Mind that from what i’ve seen till now there are no bad doctors (can’t wait to get to 6 though and see if all the fuss about him being the worst doctor ever is really justified, but I really liked Colin Baker on The Five(ish) Doctors) I think all of them have bad, good and great stories but there was no bad actor or take on the role so far!


    Now entering the  discussion about the finale tomorow and the season, I really liked this season overall, the only bad episode for me was kill the moon, and only because I think the spiders were not really used! They’re so creepy you could make a whole episode just about them! Don’t mind the bad science, this is a tv show not a class and It doesn’t bother me when they bend reality laws.

    As for tomorow i’m not even that curious about missy anymore, what really got me anxious was what Clara said in the trailer! Can’t wait to see how this plays out! I also see many that many people don’t like Clara, I think she didn’t worked really well with 11,  but in this series they’ve found her place and she is in great balance with Capaldi’s doctor! And Jenna Coleman is so beautiful I don’t mind she being poor writen (never forget her red dress on Asylum of the Daleks)!

    PhileasF @phileasf


    My final call on Missy: She’s the Doctor’s wife/girlfriend/significant other, Susan’s grandmother. She somehow hitched a ride out of the Doctor’s timestream with the Doctor and Clara. Or possibly escaped through the crack.

    The evidence:

    – her prior knowledge of the Doctor, with a different accent (Deep Breath)

    – she refers to him as her boyfriend (Deep Breath)

    – she seems to have access to time travel

    – she knows the Doctor’s phone number

    My other final call… Handles! (Did you know there was a Missy in Nightmare in Silver? Me either, until a few minutes ago when I googled Missy and came up with this unexpected result. She was a soldier, and was probably converted into a Cyberman… Could Handles have been this Missy; and could she have been regenerated accidentally when the Time Lords sent that regeneration energy through the crack?)

    As for what’s going on with Clara…

    Thinking back on some of the weirder things that have happened during the season, I keep coming back to the idea Clara’s having an Oswin-in-‘Asylum of the Daleks’ experience. She’s been converted into… I’d better not say what as it’s in trailers/posters/location footage, and so might be considered a spoiler. She’s living in a dream-world, in much the same way Oswin did.

    How can this avoid outraging the audience with ‘it was all a dream’? If Clara is remembering her adventures, and the episodes we see are her memories, then it isn’t only a dream. Most of what we’ve seen this year really happened. But sometimes the truth breaks into her recollections. People tell her her face is too wide. She’s smiling and looking sad at the same time. She smells bad. She’s always lying (to herself, mainly, about still being human.)

    When Missy sees Clara at the end of Flatline, she’s really looking into Clara’s dream-world. Missy is tracking the Doctor by extracting information from Clara’s memories. She’s then able to ‘collect’ the dead.

    Clara is partially aware of what’s going on, so is feeding her unseen watcher misinformation, making up absurd adventures like Kill the Moon and In the Forest of the Night.

    So how come we sometimes see things Clara couldn’t have (the Doctor on his own in Listen, for instance)? She imagines these scenes, based on what he told her later.

    Mind you, I had a near-identical theory about what would be revealed in The Name of the Doctor… except then I thought the Doctor was a Dalek. So possibly my brain just works this way 🙂

    Anonymous @

    @phileasf this is superb bonkerising and I’m going to take it to the Missy thread if you don’t mind as I now realise that -On The Sofa is for shorter conversations? maybe? Not sure. To be on safe side of the mods…..also best to prelude any discussion of ‘who is Missy?’ in the Missy thread. See you over there.

    Anonymous @

    @pedant on this Forum I’ve noticed a distinct love that you have for Buffy! I saw some in hospital, maybe, 6 years ago? But then later, it was shown on TV at midnight here and I didn’t have a recorder at the time.  I assume you recommend it?  I always thought it was for…teenagers…no idea why I believed this….I thought it connected with all that Twilight stuff that was a canker (forgive me). Obviously not! Should I watch it? Season 1 n’ all? Kindest, puro.



    I would say that Buffy is to Twilight what Romeo and Juliet is to West Side Story, but that would be a grave insult to a perfectly fine musical.

    It is a 7 season (9 if you count the subsequent comics) serial in which things that happened in the first season had consequences in the last (and indeed, but for cast availability, the first episode). Season 5 is a storytelling master class and remains, in my considered opinion, the finest single season of storytelling in any genre, anywhere.

    Despite some evident production difficulties a few times, and a bit of unfortunate pandering to fangirls later on, the consistency is astonishing and even the most workmanlike of filler episodes has some significance, thanks to grasp the A-B-C plot structure.

    In my life there have been three genre shows that I have gone out of my way to watch. Dr Who, Red Dwarf and Buffy (Babylon 5 would have been there but Channel 4’s scheduling arsed that up).

    Anonymous @

    @pedant  so, I laugh, you wouldn’t add Supernatural to that list? 🙂  Thank you for your fine references for this show: on my way to JB Hi-Fi.

    Tomorrow, at least.

    Kindest,  purofilion

    Spider @spider


    I’ve had the nickname ‘Spider’ for many years, partly due to the irony that I can’t stand spiders and partly for other reasons far too convoluted to explain (even here in good old bonkers land). So that is why I’m bouncing not scuttling! 😀  I think there is still a large dent in my sofa from me trying to burrow into it during the KtM episode 😉

    Argh! Giant spider on a guitar – I may never be able to play mine again now you’ve shared that story!


    Craig @craig

    This made me laugh. And kinda touched me. Sean Pertwee’s Halloween costume. Ahh…

    Sean Pertwee

    Arbutus @arbutus

    I’ve been following the discussion between @bluesqueakpip and @jimbomcmaster on the Flatline thread, regarding good and bad choices and it gave rise to a notion that interests me. (I’m posting here because my thoughts really have nothing to do with Flatline!)

    People have mentioned before, I believe, that AG incarnations of the Doctor were not averse to using violence when necessary. Seven appeared to have a dislike of guns and violence, but he still on occasion encouraged violence in others to further his ends. From what we learn in Night of the Doctor, Eight seems to have spent his part of the Time War trying to stay out of it altogether, and helping the victims when he could. In this sense, he may have been the first incarnation to fully take on the non-violence suggested by the “Doctor” title.

    However, eventually, he chose to abandon the role of doctor and become a warrior. It seems to me that this must have been the first of the “less bad” choices that the War forced upon him. He would not have wanted to embrace that role. So he fought in the Time War, for what seems to have been a very long time, despite the Sister’s statement that the universe was “very nearly over” (or words to that effect). Perhaps at last, he realized that his participation was actually dragging things on and causing more suffering. This could have helped push him to feel the need to make a choice at that moment. Again, not a choice that he was comfortable with, but one that (at that point) he could see no way out of. And hence became even more anti-violence afterward, as a result of having made that choice. And hence Ten’s words to Kate Stewart that “that’s not a choice that you will ever be able to live with”, because he felt that she hadn’t yet come to the point of being forced to make it.

    It seems to have taken the Doctor many lives to have come to the view that violence is always wrong. And then the Time War forced him (he felt) to abandon that principle. I don’t think he pushed Half-Face Man.  🙂

    PS @craig, that photo is beautiful!

    Serahni @serahni

    @purofilion  I was doing Halloween duty at my cousin’s house so that they could go trick-or-treating and still have someone dishing out candy from their door.  There were a few tiny vampires and pumpkins floating about but most were put-off by their steep driveway, I feel.

    I am not actually a fan of the fact that the commercialisation of Halloween has infested Australia, it was never even a thing when I was a kid.  But the world will keep on spinning no matter what I think and the kids had fun at least.

    Marinus lost his keys again @marinus-lost-his-keys-again

    Trying to avoid yonder spoilers, as I have yet to see any Capaldi beyond the regeneration. However I will say this. I am really glad they went with Capaldi because that gives us a Doctor who’se a bit more of a mature looking gentleman. Because ever since McGann, the Doctor has been a thirty something at most looking tall thin person and it sort of made me think back to the days of Troughton, Pertwee, McCoy and, of course, William Hartnell himself.

    It’s nice to know that the new series won’t have to rely on having a young leading man to appeal to the kids.

    BadWulf @badwulf

    Hi all!

    If anyone is interested, at @craig ‘s and @thommck ‘s recommendations, I have put up an editable version of my Doctor Who ratings calculations spreadsheet onto Google Docs:


    This is the first time I’ve used Google Docs, so let me know if it doesn’t work.

    The spreadsheet works as follows:

    • 2 tabs, one called Data Entry, one called Do Not Edit
    • On Data Entry, type your name (e.g. BadWulf) in the top row in an empty column
    •  Now you can go down your column, giving ratings to each story
    • The ratings go from 1 to 5, with an N/A as the default value for a story you’ve not seen in its entirety (it would be unfair to rate a story you’ve not seen!)
    • There is a grey column with average scores – this is a calculated column, so don’t edit it!
    • There is a black row beneath every season, which will give an average of your scores for that season, if you have seen all of the stories. (It will show N/A if any of your individual scores in that season are N/A)
    • There is a green row beneath the last story per Doctor, which will give your average score for that Doctor (It will show N/A if any of your individual scores for that Doctor are N/A)


    • The Do Not Edit tab shows some interesting breakdowns of the data in various categories, e.g. Doctors, Cybermen stories, River Song stories. The cells on this page should *not* be edited!


    I hope this works, and is interesting!

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