The Ghost Monument

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  • #64446
    Craig @craig
    Emperor

    The Ghost Monument

    I haven’t seen this one yet so don’t know much about it and no one seems to be giving much away. But from what I hear it’s more concerned with continuing character introductions than full-on story. Which is fine with me. And it’s supposed to be just as good as the opening episode.

    As we ended last week with our heroes stranded in space, this is an off-Earth story, which is great. I hope we get more of those as it seems to me the budget has gone up – given the production values of ‘The Woman Who Fell To Earth’.

    All the BBC are saying is “Can the Doctor and her new friends stay alive long enough in a hostile alien environment to solve the mystery of Desolation?”

    Once again it’s written by Chris Chibnall, the showrunner, and it features Art Malik, who was teased in the end credits last week. As I said, still a good story, but the main point of it seems to be to establish the characters and then, once we really know them, we can probably get off and running (literally) with episode three next week.

    #64457

    Enjoyed that.

    Hints of an *whisper it* arc.

    Some less-crisp-than-it-could-be-dialogue-editing more than offset by the redesign of old Sexy.

    And two of my theories shot down in flames.

    #64458
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @pedant arc is definitely on. Hint of a Big Bad, and, I didn’t entirely catch what the bandages were saying to the Doctor – Timeless Child? Something she doesn’t remember?

    #64459
    Mudgodson @mudgodson

    The tardis design is just terrible I don’t like it and I always look at bradly walsh as the doctor it seems funny the way the doctor runs.  I’m actually seeing bradly as the doctor I treat him like the doctor and Jodie as assistant.

    #64460

    @mudgodson

    Commas are your friend.

    @miapatrick

    Definitely heard Timeless Child, but took it to be a taunting of the Time Lord’s (…er….moving on…) base insecurity.

    #64461
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @mudgodson what is it about the character of Graham that makes you see him as the Doctor? I personally liked his attempts to bond with his step-grandson and got a strong sense of him trying to fill, in some way, the space left by the death of his wife, but nothing screamed Doctor to me.

    13, on the other hand, was eccentric, authoritative, and ingenious. She’s a little warmer and less overbearing than previous AG doctors, which I felt last week as a concern that this is occurring with the first female doctor. But I think about 6 (I think – Davidson) and remember it’s not unprecedented.

    #64462
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @pedant there was something in her reaction to it that caught my attention, I’d almost missed what it was they said. It’ll be interesting to see how this series pans out.

    #64463
    Craig @craig
    Emperor

    @pedant @miapatrick I had a thought last week that there might be an arc based on the SkyHigh company that the targeted bloke’s Dad owned – that there was a reason he was targeted by an alien *predator*. I mean, why pick him?

    Might still be right.

    Personally, I don’t think we’ve seen much of the new TARDIS, but what I’ve seen so far I love.

    #64464
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @craig – now you mention it, SkyHigh as a company name has an arc-y sound to it. And why were there two targets in the Sheffield area so close together in time? And why is earth being used as a hunting ground at all, seeing as it has been defended throughout time by a grumpy, very protective time lord?

    (As for the last, given Eleventh Hour and maybe Rose, maybe people tend to try it on with Earth after a Doctor dies…)

    #64465
    Mudlark @mudlark

    That was fun, and I think I may have underestimated Chibnall. There was plenty to like; pace, further character development, running in corridors for the traditionally minded, the triumph of intellect and quick thinking over brute firepower and of teamwork over cut-throat competition and, yes, the reappearance of the Stenza from the first episode, so it both was and was not a stand-alone. The remnants’ whisper referring to the Doctor as the Timeless Child is particularly promising mystery thread to follow. Nor was it lacking in darker undertones, with the references to population ‘cleansing’ and genocide.

    Setting aside the question of the Doctor and the other three surviving unprotected in space for even the second or two before they were scooped up, my only criticism, and not for the first time since I sometimes had the same problem with the eleventh Doctor, was the dialogue. There is little if anything wrong with my hearing, but perhaps my ageing brain has a problem processing  words delivered at machine-gun velocity.

    Not sure that I like the redesign of the Tardis interior; at first glance it seems visually very confusing, but given time I may get used to it.  And for once nobody said, ‘It’s bigger on the inside’.

    #64466
    Mudlark @mudlark

    @miapatrick

    there was something in her reaction to it that caught my attention,

    Yes, mine too; she was clearly both struck and puzzled by it.  I suspect that it is something which refers to her in particular and not to Time Lords in general, and that will resonate through the episodes to come; a linking thread if not exactly a narrative arc.

    #64467
    Craig @craig
    Emperor

    I don’t think this counts as spoilers – just a nice insight into the new TARDIS.

    #64468
    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @mudlark

    Setting aside the question of the Doctor and the other three surviving unprotected in space for even the second or two before they were scooped up,

    They had at least ninety seconds before permanent damage, and maybe as long as four minutes – for obvious reasons, NASA has done a fair amount of experimentation on it. For equally obvious reasons the episode glossed over the projectile vomiting, major toileting failure, seizures, paralysis – but while test animals (and accidental people) lost consciousness very quickly, they also recovered completely after pressure was restored. It seems that as long as the heart keeps beating, recovery is possible. Once it stops, the damage is too great.

    I think Arthur C. Clarke’s Earthlight uses this to evacuate a spacecraft when there aren’t enough spacesuits – essentially, they haul everyone across within the time limits (though he has people staying conscious for longer than they realistically would).

    #64469
    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    Right, I think that’s going to take a bit of a rewatch but initial impressions are some things I loved and some things I really didn’t. It looked great for one thing. This is the most filmic we’ve ever seen Who I think. And the music was even better this week than last — real vibe of BSG/Firefly cultural fusion to the sound. The scenario of the episode kind of reminded me of Borderlands, with its desperate, amoral characters and lethal, desert landscape. And that can only be a good thing.

    Writing-wise, we seem to be back with the Chibnall of 42 and Cold Blood (as opposed to The Hungry Earth). Seemed to veer towards really rather a lot of people running around in a plot that could have done with a bit more groundwork. Art Malik seemed kind of wasted too. I think I would rather have seen him play Epzo.

    I’m still not totally sold on Whittaker yet either. It’s difficult to tell from a regeneration story but I’d have liked to have seen more suggestion of her own interpretation of the Doctor coming through and she still seems to be channelling a bit too much of a Tennant/Smith pastiche this week (perhaps with more emphasis on the Smith this time around). I just keep getting the feeling that there’s a great Doctor in there still struggling to get out. Mind you, plenty of time yet, Capaldi didn’t feel like he fully inhabited the 12th Doc until Last Christmas.

    Yep, and it looks like an arc developing, so yay. Though I have to admit Chibbers is going to have to pump up the Stenza if they’re getting promoted from generic one-episode bad guy to the series Big Bad. That’s perfectly do-able I suppose, bearing in mind that Tim Shaw was meant to be a rubbish wannabe in their gang.

    The new opening titles are a thing of beauty — very Pertwee-era, I thought. And didn’t go on for ages the way some of the Moffat-era ones did (though I must admit I did love the Capaldi-era ones). Seems like the fan-made ‘ink’ title sequence was something of an influence too. As to the theme itself, easily the best version to grace the show since the first Tom Baker version. (Though did it have shades of the version used on some of the McGann audios to my ears.)

    As to the TARDIS, the new exterior looks much better in situ than it did on set photos. It’s very nice indeed and seems less ostentatious and blocky than the Smith/Capaldi version. But I have to say I’m hating the new interior with its Tennant interior meets the Fortress of Solitude look. The console seems rather small compared to all the structures around it and despite the scale of the set, it just feels cluttered, almost to Peter Cushing TARDIS levels. This is my main bugbear with the new direction at the moment, the overall design. I just can’t get on board with Whittaker’s costume, especially when she even managed to make Capaldi’s tattered outfit last week look stylish. A good Doctor’s costume might convey quirkiness or eccentricity but it should also convey authority. Even Troughton and Baker I’s did this. Baker II, McCoy and even Davison suffered as Doctors because their costumes erred to far on the risible side and so, I fear, does Whittaker’s.

    #64471
    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    Oh, and where the hell did those sunglasses come from?

    #64472
    Mudlark @mudlark

    @bluesqueakpip

    True that there would be a survivable interval, but the probable after effects were, as you say, glossed over, with barely a hint of the medical intervention that would have been necessary. I suppose that we were intended to take that as read, but I confess it bothered me slightly.

     

     

    #64473
    Craig @craig
    Emperor

    @jimthefish Yeah, I kinda thought I’d let the sunglasses thing ride, but seeing as there was such a big point made about empty pockets in the first story it seemed weird.

    Unless they’re just charity shop sunglasses and she was joking? Maybe?

    #64474
    Craig @craig
    Emperor

    Just watched the opening credits again – still do love the new (but kinda old) theme tune. It’s a nice nod.

    As there weren’t any opening credits last week, and this week we got opening credits without a TARDIS, I wonder if they’ll have TARDIS in them next week?

    Just a thought.

    #64475
    Mudlark @mudlark

    @jimthefish

    Although I have refrained from commenting on it until I had seen it in context, I agree about the costume. It seems too overtly gimmicky in the style of the 5th, 6th and 7th Doctors, rather than simply idiosyncratic, and I very much hope that they don’t stick with it throughout Whittaker’s time as the Doctor. I like the coat, though, and would happily wear it *

    I agree with you, too, that it is still a bit difficult to see beyond the elements of Tennant and Smith in Whittaker’s rendition of the Doctor, though there were a few moments when I thought I perceived something else coming through, especially in that moment of self doubt before the Tardis materialised.

    (I keep typing Whittaker as Whattaker. Is that significant? )

    * What do you mean, ‘mutton dressed as lamb’?

    #64476
    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Thanks for the TARDIS interior clip @craig . Arwel was the designer on Moffat’s Sherlock, and he did an amazing job, so it’s great to have him on Who.

    I absolutely LOVE the new TARDIS interior and felt quite emotional when the Doctor and the TARDIS reunited. The custard cream dispenser is brilliant, but the pinwheel design (which Arwel, in the clip, said he got from the fractal patterns of trees) made me squee a bit, because I’ve just been to a talk on folk magic archaeology, and the daisy wheel (with the six spokes) which patterns the new TARDIS is also a pre-Christian solar symbol associated with sun goddesses, which is found throughout Europe:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/wiltshire/hi/people_and_places/history/newsid_8363000/8363932.stm

    Later, its symbology passed to being associated with the Virgin Mary, as clever Christianity did its syncretic absorption thing.

    And the Doctor as a bringer of light fits. He’s been referred to as a “God” several times on Nu Who, notably by one of the cat nuns (as the “lonely god”) in New Earth (not that he would accept “godhood” unless having a grandiose off-the-rails moment like in The Waters of Mars). And now that he is a she, so the ancient solar goddess symbol seems wonderfully apt. Plus the blue and the gold together, very cosmic.

    The “Timeless Child” reference mentioned by @miapatrick and @mudlark definitely felt like an arc note. I didn’t take the reference as referring to the Doctor herself though, and immediately starting wondering afresh what happened to Susan and whether the Doctor will ever come across her or her descendants. Particularly as she is now travelling with a grandfather and a (step) grandson, I feel this resonance has legs, because it’s already mirrored in the companions (and mirroring is a wonderful narrative technique).

    @jimthefish Hey fishy comrade. Yes, I didn’t like Peter Davidson’s cricket gear at all, so each to their own.

    I’m not bothered by Jodie’s costume myself though. Yes, I’ve always liked the frock-coat end of the Doctor’s sartorial extravangances, but Jodie’s gear is practical, sort of belt and braces, which goes with her scientist-engineer flair, with a hint of rainbow on the T-shirt which I find intriguing now that she is fully out on the show as a gender-fluid being. In terms of her having authority, that is going to be, in part, also up to audiences re-examining their ability to recognise authority as personified in a female incarnation. Like @mudgodson above, immediately latching on to the oldest dude companion and seeing him as the Doctor by default, we are used, culturally and historically to bestowing authority more commonly upon men. Which makes the whole question of authority, and how the Jodie Doctor wears it, carries it, wields it, and is recognised or not recognised (in show and out) as having it, highly intriguing.

    The Doctor’s “We’re better together,” line made me smile. I see there have been calls for the Doctor to come to earth and fix our hideous environmental crisis recently in The Guardian. While she’s at it, if she could sort out the sink-hole that is Brexit, we’d be much obliged.

     

    #64477
    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @mudlark

    I’ll have to check on a rewatch, but I’m fairly sure that there was a mention of a medipod for Yaz, at least, and Ryan also looked like he was waking up in something that could have been a medical unit.

    Certainly that was my default assumption, since the humans definitely would have needed medical attention. Gallifreyans like the Doctor, probably not.

    #64478

    @bluesqueakpip @mudlark

    There was indeed the mention of a a medipod (or similar) for Yaz, and Graham saw Ryan regaining consciousness in something along those lines.

    @craig

    Little bit puzzled by Matt Strevens comment that the new Tardis would be more analogue that before. All of the AG Tardises have been very much organic and/ or steampunk, about as far from digital as you can get and still be SF. Maybe he just doesn’t realise that the command modules of the Apollo missions didn’t have any digital tech on them, despite having 7 segment displays all over.

    #64480
    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Oh, and I forgot to say something about the resonances of the episode title.

    The “ghost monument” is, in fact, the TARDIS herself. As Gallifrey is still outside this universe, in its own bubble universe, as far as Capaldi left it when he high-tailed it out of there after his aeons of imprisonment, the TARDIS is indeed a sort of ghost monument to a great civilisation-that-was.

    However, as we know, the TARDIS has a mind of her own, and we have to wonder why she brought the Doctor to that particular hideous weapons-testing planet, for their reunion in the Doctor’s new incarnation. Perhaps because the Doctor’s own participation in war (the Time War) and the long emotional aftermath of that, including his atonement, is now laid to rest, and Jodie’s Doctor can now re-dedicate herself to peace throughout the universe.

    So, in that sense, the TARDIS is a ghost monument to the phase-of-war-that-was, but she has redecorated herself in beautiful blues and golds with the daisy wheel solar symbol of life, in order to become, now, a vehicle, once more, of peace.

    #64483
    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Also, look, the TARDIS, with adorable self-reflection, has created a small “ghost monument” version of herself as part of her interior controls!

    She has got so used to her chamelion circuit being stuck that her self-concept is now “earth police box”:

    #64484
    ardaraith @ardaraith

    Better and better! Ryan reminds me of my son, I just love him.  When he was going to take out the aliens like the video game and then ran back screaming – perfect pitch of innocent little boy.  I wept when the TARDIS found her!  and she said she loved her!! :squee:  The theme of people working together, oh how we need that in our world right now.  The hint of deeper arcs with the “Timeless Child” – hidden from her, the outcast, abandoned,  and unknown, said to music that sounded like…  a lullaby?  I was thrilled with the ride. Again, please?

    #64485
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @bluesqueakpip,@pedant: re medipods – I did notice how Graham was waking Ryan up and thought it was interesting that he seemed to have recovered sooner than his grandson. (I’m reading it as that for Graham, Ryan is his grandson, whatever Ryan’s thoughts on the matter). This might just be to emphasise this dynamic, but he’d recovered quickly enough to get his bearings, and it’s interesting that this is the character who thought he might be dying just a few years ago. If this was Moffat, I’d theorise on this. On the other ship it seems as though 13 got up and going at around the same rate.

    #64486
    wolfweed @wolfweed

    My bonkers theory is that Ilin (Art Malik) is the Celestial Toymaker. Probably wishful thinking, though…

    malik

    #64488
    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Just realised that Ilin is an anagram of 1 – nil!

    #64489
    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    @wolfweed

    Yay, wolfweed. Welcome back. And I do like that Celestial Toymaker theory.

    #64490

    “only the one in town’s green. This don’t make any sense.”

    That made me LOL. Twice now.

    #64491
    Arch @arch

    Liked it. Felt a bit rushed in sections but overall I thought it was solid. Very interesting to see the Stenza again, as I had assumed Tim Shaw was a once off.

    I think Jodie will need a couple more episodes before we really see the type of Dr she is going to be.

    I think she will be a more collaborative and vulnerable Dr. She let the boys and in fact encouraged them to look at the engine, when clearly it would have been faster to just look herself. The whole episode revolved around collaboration and teamwork and I think due to her much large follower base than the usual 1 or 2, were in for a different interpretation of the Dr, one who does doubt herself and need that reassurance, as seen in the last scene.

    Not a bad thing, I think Capaldi who I adore did his best work solo, Jodi I think will work better with a team. I look forward to watching her develop the character in a potential new direction. Thx Chibnall.

    #64492
    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Stenza ™ is an American stationery company…

    stenza

    #64495

    @ardaraith @miapatrick @mudlark @juniperfish

    On rewatch Timeless Child definitely came over as much more significant than at first – telling her something she did not remember, and revelling in knowing a secret that it wouldn’t tell.

    It occurs to me, with hindsight, that Chibbers is a much more likely candidate that Moffatt to take a crack at an origin story….

     

    #64498
    Notime @notime

    We got the Title sequence here in the States this time.   New visuals…..familiar time.  Was a little disappointed by that.

    To win the contest…..didn’t one have to witness the Ghost Monument or just arrive where it normally appears?  Need a second viewing….as usual.  🙂

     

    Very surprised the Doctor was so defeated at the end…..I was totally expecting it to appear eventually.  She even predicted so earlier in the show….

     

    Perhaps the TARDIS caused the planet to drift out of orbit?   It appears every 1000 years or so?   I wonder how many times the Ghost Monument has been seen?  A little nudge each time could have moved the planet off course…

     

    First place I would go is to the female racer’s home planet.  Two reasons.   Cleanse it of the “tooth fairies” and to let her know they made it off that planet safely.

    #64501
    DrBen @drben

    Another solid episode. A clever idea and good performances all around. Solid Who themes about teamwork and perseverance and all that.  Chibbers is really digging into the Graham/Ryan relationship to great effect. I hope they will give Yaz more to do.

    Whittaker is undoubtedly the Doctor. I could have heard the line, “Didn’t I tell you? I’m *really* smart” spoken by any of her previous selves. For my money, she is nailing it.

    Great callback to Venusian Aikido, and the “you’ve redecorated” line. New TARDIS is a bit dark but I love the crystal over the center console.

    “Timeless Child” is definitely going to come back.  Ashildr seems too obvious (and I doubt there’s going to be much trawling through recent seasons this year) – maybe some Gallifreyan legend that scares the Doctor?

    B+ overall – can’t wait to see what happens next!

    #64506
    Nova @goldenova

    I feel as if the new TARDIS interior pulls back into older Who. 11th and 12th had interiors that felt homie and lived-in. You could casually pull a book off the shelf of 12th’s and there were dart boards in 11th’s.

    We’ve lost the Dalek bumps 12th had and we now have interesting glowing sun pentagons and crystals. It feels more like a true ship now, I think.

    #64507
    Bilbo Baggins @bilbobaggins

    @drben

    About the “timeless child” at first I thought they were talking  about that “daughter” the Doctor had, Jenny.

    #64508
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @ardaraith @miapatrick @mudlark @juniperfish: this site being this site, we were always going to find something to theorise about.

    So, my main worry is that they might try to incorporate the Spockification of the Doctor attempted in the film (I am 100% happy that 8 is officially one of the Doctors but I prefer it when we politely ignore the half human thing).

    Other than that – Susan? ‘An Unearthly Child’, ‘Timeless Child’ did make me think of her, and the call backs to the beginning of Who seem to support this. This doesn’t mean they’re talking about Susan. But it all makes me think this isn’t some special human like Amy, Clara, Astrid, I would really like this to be about the Doctor or another Gallafrayan. And yes, what did happen to Susan when she (surely) outlived her human husband?

    I like what RTD and Moffat did with the Doctor’s childhood. RTD: the master looked into the (vortex?) and went mad, the Doctor started running and has been running ever since. Moffat: The Doctor was a sad child who looked like he would never manage to enter the academy. These are both really good for me, showing how the Doctor is different to other Time Lords, but in interesting, relatable ways. I’m not sure I want them, personally, to make him any more special than that.

    And – I believe there is a blog post here on this subject – insertion of Gallafrayan’s tends to produce diminishing returns. So in this case I’m hopeful that this will be a smallish arc, a story linking the series but not dominating every episode. If we are getting a crack at an origin story, surely we’ll be seeing a version of The Master?

    looking through this comment it’s turning into a list of what I would like this story to be, please, which is verging on the ARSE-y. So I’m going to end with the fact that I like the idea of a secret hidden from the Doctor’s memories, and a big bad that knows more about this than she does. Getting back to Susan, we’ve seen perception filters that make humans think they have a child, is there one that would work on a Time Lord?

    #64509
    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @bilbobaggins – I do like the fact that this first female incarnation of the Doctor absolutely looks like she’d have a daughter who looks like Jenny. (Of course, so did Davidson’s Doctor, for obvious reasons.)

    #64511
    geoffers @geoffers

    @miapatrick

    “So I’m going to end with the fact that I like the idea of a secret hidden from the Doctor’s memories” — it was time lord tech that erased clara from 12’s mind, i’d love it if they somehow tinkered with his memory long before that… perhaps when they gifted him that huge dose of regenerations, on trenzalore?

    “a big bad that knows more about this than she does” — echoes of the silence, and ‘the doctor in his tardis, who doesn’t know what caused the cracks in time?’ 🙂

    such a solid episode for me, i’m really glad to have the tardis back sooner, rather than later. i did wonder why they didn’t wait to show the opening sequence til a bit later, tho? like, right between when we know graham and ryan have been saved separately, and the reveal of yaz waking up on the other ship?

    @pedant – graham had to have been in a medipod, as well, if only for a brief moment, because he had a translator thingy put in his neck without his knowledge, too…

    i was wondering why the doctor was so quick to think she’d failed, though. she should have known the shortcut through the tunnels (and the emergency travelling at night) would get them to their destination a bit quicker. having to sit and wait for an hour or so must not be as emotionally weighted (or as film-able) as getting down on yourself? lol

    @jimthefish @craig – re: sunglasses… the simplest rationale for me (other than continuity error)? the doctor lies! those pockets in the premiere weren’t empty, except of things she really needed!

    #64512
    geoffers @geoffers

    oh, just remembered one GAH! moment, for me…

    when angstrom cuts the creature off of epzo with a knife, absolutely no callback to the last episode!  not even a “sorry, maybe knives are ok in some tight spots” from the doctor, who’s standing there helplessly, sonic in hand?

     

     

    #64513
    geoffers @geoffers

    as for “the timeless child.” in the context of the scene, it seemed to me that they were referring to the doctor, when she was a child, before becoming a time lord, i.e. just an ordinary gallifreyan child. her reaction made it seem very personal, and specific. was s/he an outcast, and lonely? maybe the doctor’s memories from childhood are clearer upon regenerating (having so recently been “re-born”), and that’s how the creature was able to access them? and they fade as s/he adventures more and more, and remembers more and more other stuff?

    hmmm. maybe we’re in for (if not a full-on origin story) some new knowledge of the doctor from when s/he was a child… beyond the fact that clara was once hiding under the bed, out in that barn?! 😀

    #64514
    NearlySane @nearlysane

    It might have been the big Zinfandel’s influence but I rather loved that. Not one of the ‘great’ episodes but very solid and looked brilliant. As others have noted, the defeat that Jodie Whittaker showed before the TARDIS appeared seemed a bit odd, and out of character, but the reference about the Stenza and the intriguing Timeless Child made the idea of an arc possible without removing that this may still be effectively standalone episodes. It felt more BG Who than it has in a long time.

     

    I do wonder if we shall see more of Art Malik.

    #64516
    MissRori @missrori

    This seemed a middle-of-the-road story to me, much as “Smile” was last season, though that story having fewer major characters meant that it could focus more on refining the Doctor-new companion dynamic.  Doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it, but I do think it would help if BBC America would, at least for the premiere airing, drop the commercials.  They are REALLY killing momentum.

    While the Stenza turning out to be the big bad for the season is a promising possibility — we haven’t had a recurring enemy unique to AG Who since the Silence (one of my regrets for the Capaldi era is that Twelve never had a unique adversary of that kind, though he had some great one-offs) — I’m not keen on the idea of the “Timeless Child” remark turning out to be an arc rather than, as @pedant put it, a commentary on the Doctor’s past as previously established.**  It just seems like a lose-lose situation — if it’s an old character, then Chibnall and co. have to come up with a convincing justification for it being brought back AND have to unload a bunch of backstory to get new viewers up to speed.  (By the by, Ashildr/Me already has the title Woman Who Lived, and Clara is both the Impossible Girl and 1/2 of the Hybrid… 😀  )  If it’s a new character but someone the Doctor doesn’t recall despite being sooooo important, then there’s a bunch of backstory that needs to be unloaded to explain that to all viewers!  Moffat couldn’t pull the Hybrid arc off back in Series 9 with the cheat of an explanation he went with; does Chibnall think he can do better?  😀  We shall see.

    I’m with those who feel that poor Yaz is getting shortchanged by Chibnall and co. at this point in favor of Graham and Ryan when it comes to companion stuff.  We learned a little bit about her family, but not much.  Maybe next week’s episode will finally find a way to expound upon her personality and situation?

    I don’t really think too much about Tennant and Smith looking at Whittaker.  Maybe it’s because I haven’t seen near so many of their episodes (especially Smith) as I have some of the BG Doctors, Eccleston, and Capaldi.  I like her a lot and I don’t see her as especially derivative.

    See you next week!  (Deposits $0.02)

    **I was actually reminded in that scene of a sequence near the end of the Twelfth Doctor’s first Doctor Who Magazine comic strip storyline, “The Eye of Torment”.  The adversaries are creatures that drive others to despair and destruction of self and others by preying on their regrets, esteem, mistakes, etc. and when they go after the Doctor they call him such things as a “sad little boy”.

    #64517
    MissRori @missrori

    Also — I know some people felt Thirteen seemed too ready to give up when the TARDIS wasn’t right there and all seemed lost for her and her friends, but look at it from her point of view.  In the Doctor’s previous incarnation, he watched Clara die and didn’t get the chance to see…whatever his plan was to bring her completely back from the dead through was after all he suffered for the sake of duty of care.  He couldn’t reach Bill Potts in time to save her from being Cyber-converted, and there was no way he could have when you give it some thought.  Nor could he figure out a way to undo the conversion once they were stuck on Floor 507 and had to deal with the farmers’ plight on top of everything else.  (Though he had regeneration energy right there!)  And as far as Thirteen knows, everything her previous self did to bring Missy around was for worse than nothing because of what Bill and so many others went through.  Basically, poor Twelve had to deal with the sting of failure quite a bit when it came to what personally matters to him.  Maybe Thirteen was getting flashbacks when faced with the possibility of three new acquaintances meeting their doom too…

    #64518
    teak @teak

    <span data-offset-key=”c8tko-0-0″>Looking at Doctor Who, so far he show has been terrific. I saw the TARDIS interior. It looks horrible. It looks like Modern Art Vomit. The console is back to that ugly boiler room thing. I hope they change it soon, this is the worse TARDIS Control room ever. Still love the show.</span>

    #64520
    Cath Annabel @cathannabel

    @pedant  The one in town IS green!

    https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attraction_Review-g186364-d213579-Reviews-Police_Box-Sheffield_South_Yorkshire_England.html

    @geoffers Re the sunglasses, those definitely weren’t 12’s shades (sonic or otherwise), were they…  Judging by the style Audrey Hepburn was a more plausible previous owner – but how did they end up in 12’s pockets in that case (same goes for a hung-over Pythagoras!).  I think she was just having a laugh, and she actually picked them up in the charity shop when she was buying her outfit.  Perhaps.

    #64521
    Notime @notime

    Upon second viewing…

    The contestants just needed to arrive at the Ghost Monument site.  Viewing the monument wasn’t required.

    Ghost Monument appears roughly every 1000 rotations or so….not years like I previously thought.

     

    I can’t stop thinking about the contest.   The prize to the winner suggests there must have been spectators.   The hologram threatened immediate disqualification if the rules were broken so I presume there had to be some way to monitor the contestants.

    As far as I can tell….receiving help from the Doctor and companions did not violate the rules so I guess that was okay…

     

    I thought for a second the Doctor was going to pull out the sonic sunglasses for Graham to use….that would have been a little comical.

     

    #64522
    Arbutus @arbutus

    Holy crap, you guys. So how good was that?

    I had to watch the opening theme a half dozen times before I even got to the actual episode! I love the way the old-school music gets going, and then runs down like a record losing speed for just a second. And the gender symbol in the logo!

    Speaking of the music, I hope everyone liked the Doctor in the TARDIS theme at the end. I loved it. The last scene was brilliant, I thought. It had all the joy of that moment when a new Doctor is reacquainted with his/her best friend. And from the moment she said “You’ve redecorated”, I knew that this Doctor would like it. Because this Doctor is ready for change.

    So many great little moments, but two things stood out for me.

    I never had time to get back on the other day to say how much I hoped for Graham’s character, and it doesn’t look as though I’ll be disappointed. He is going to take everything he learned from Grace and run with it. He is going to show the Doctor (and us) that human frailty doesn’t have to slow us down, that we can grow and embrace challenge, face fear. I love having an older Companion in the TARDIS!

    As for the Doctor, I do like her. Despite being in a way a kinder, gentler Doctor, she hasn’t altogether lost her snark, or her arrogance. I loved the words of encouragement she took the time to share, while still expressing disdain for certain attitudes in her own direct fashion. And while it’s no surprise that she is still firmly on the side of “brain over brawn”, it was great to see her using Venusian Akido to get someone’s attention!

    Yay! Can’t wait to read all your thoughts (and watch it again!) 🙂

    #64523

    @cathannabel

    Oh, I never doubted that – but the idea that a blue doesn’t make sense (and for a young cop to say it, at that) made me chortle.

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