The Winchester

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    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @winston Yes, while the quality of the ‘swimming’ (mud-wading?) at Blockhouse Bay is just acceptable at best, the surroundings do make a big difference. Probably the best feature is the narrow high ridge on the southwest, which shelters it perfectly from the prevailing south-west winds. The second most common winds are north-easters, and it’s sheltered on that side too. And though there are a lot of houses around, the immediate vicinity of the bay is steep slopes covered in ‘bush.’

    At least you have a creek, I don’t think I’d want to live anywhere that there wasn’t water nearby in some form. The wildlife we get in the bay is mostly oystercatchers, the inevitable seagulls, ducks, and occasionally pukeko on the grass (but not in the water). Pooks (‘swamp hens’) are a freshwater wading bird, though they’ve adapted to anywhere the ground is swampy or even a bit damp, such as the edges of motorways. I rather like them, they’re quirky-looking birds and quite at home in suburbia.

    winston @winston

    @dentarthurdent I totally agree with you about living near water, I love it. The creek is surrounded by miles of wetlands that are like an animal and bird nursery. There is always some kind of life going past us. Today it was Canada Geese and a muskrat who lives in the creek bank out back. Your poor sounds cool and I will look him up next.

    Stay safe

    winston @winston

    @dentarthurdent. I mean the poot not the poor. Stupid tablet.

    Stay safe

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @winston It’s actually a ‘pook’, short for pukeko. Although they’re called ‘swamp hens’, they’re apparently not good eating, very tough (I wouldn’t know, I never tried, nobody does). There’s actually a recipe for cooking Pook – you put the pook in a pot along with a chunk of sandstone rock and boil it. When the rock starts to go soft and crumbly, you throw away the pook and eat the rock. 🙂

    winston @winston

    @dentarthurdent That is a very tough bird. Your recipe gave me and the mister a giggle. There are a lot of edible critters near us but I gave up eating all creatures about 30 years ago . I think they like that.

    Stay safe

    nerys @nerys

    In the “what have you been watching lately” vein:

    Still Alice from 2014, a deftly devastating portrayal of early-onset Alzheimer’s and its impact on the individual and her family. The film affected me so much that I couldn’t sleep that night.

    I was surprised to learn about one of the co-directors, Richard Glatzer, having ALS and being unable to speak. Watching the “making of” documentary was a remarkable revelation of how everyone, cast and crew alike, made this work.

    There was one scene among the deleted scenes that I wish they could have kept in, because it showed the intrusion of the disease into Alice’s professional life. This scene made it clear how intelligent and incisive she had been, and what Alzheimer’s was inexorably stealing from her, her colleagues and her students.

    Julianne Moore is amazing in everything I’ve ever seen her in. I think the first time I saw her was in Magnolia, still one of my favorite films. (Though, in my opinion, neither she nor Anthony Hopkins could redeem Hannibal, which I felt was just cashing in on The Silence of the Lambs success. Same with Red Dragon. That whole franchise was, for me, an unfortunate development … though, given its box office success, I’m sure the studio was quite happy with it. I’m probably alone in this, but I consider Michael Mann’s Manhunter to be a vastly superior film adaptation of Thomas Harris’s Red Dragon novel.)

    Enough about that. Though this train of thought reminds me: We recently rewatched a film I have long loved: 84 Charing Cross Road from 1987. Anthony Hopkins has done so much brilliant work. But here he shines in a movie about letters, which must be one of the most challenging subjects to depict in a movie. I’m guessing that at least half of the film is done in voice-overs. He and Anne Bancroft (plus Judi Dench in a supporting role that still surprises me because of how subdued her character is) are so skilled that I find myself forgetting about the voice-overs.

    The only part that doesn’t quite work for me is the ending. The film was based on a stage play, which in turn was based on Helene Hanff’s book of correspondence between herself and a London bookseller. There are a few instances of breaking the fourth wall, including one at the end. I have a feeling it worked better in the stage play than in the film. But I find the rest of the film deeply moving, nostalgic in a way that perhaps is over-romanticized, and yet it resonates with me.

    And, speaking of Anthony Hopkins, I’m sure The Father has been discussed here. I rewatched that a while back. It’s another heartbreaking portrayal of the impacts of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Olivia Colman is stellar, as always, but Hopkins delivers a stunningly believable performance.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    I’m afraid my infrequent choice of movies is much more lowbrow than nerys’s. One I did just watch for the first time was the last* James Bond movie, <i>No Time to Die</i>. (I did say ‘last’ not ‘latest’, I know that’s ambiguous but they did kill Bond off at the end, so maybe it will be).
    I thought it was well-made, one of the better Bonds in fact. The starting scene was quite un-Bond-ish, young girl in the wilderness with a killer after her. Then it switched to familiar Bond territory – they even brought back the classic Aston Martin DB5, with an upgrade to twin Miniguns, natch. The movie ran 23 minutes before the titles, which must be some sort of record. They included many ‘nods’ to classic Bond with such lines as ‘We’ve got all the time in the world’ (OHMSS).

    I recall, at the time of its release, reading of some indignation that James Bond was now a black woman – obviously I totally misinterpreted that, James Bond is still Daniel Craig, just his number 007 has been reassigned. I have no problem with that, though Bond did. Didn’t find the new 007 particularly appealing though, a bit haughty. Similarly M and Q have changed, well that’s logically acceptable since those were titles rather than people. Miss Moneypenny has acquired a natural tan, which is odd since that’s a person’s name rather than title. Googling, I find that she actually became Naomie Harris as long ago as Skyfall, which just shows how unobservant I am.
    But then, James Bond is the classic example of such changes.
    There is of course a parallel / contrast to Doctor Who.

    The various ‘Bond girls’, of which there were three not counting Moneypenny (can I call them that when two of them had no romantic relationship with Bond? I guess so, the movie series is known as ‘Bond’ after all) have all acquired serious combat skills in the modern style, most notably Bond’s escort in the casino who brings a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘dressed to kill.’

    I found a curious anomaly in the standards of violence. Apparently you can kill as many people as you like so long as they don’t bleed (the film is rated R12). The classic traditional ‘gun-barrel’ opening shot, I noticed that after Bond shoots, the ‘wave of red’ running down the screen was absent. I didn’t think Bond opening up with Miniguns at his pursuers was anything out of the usual, probably some of them got hit but it’s not shown on screen, and it’s a battle anyway. What did shock me was the hit squad in the secret lab deliberately killing (off-screen) all the unarmed captive lab staff.
    Even from the villains that makes me cringe.

    Oh, and finally, Bond’s predicament at the end was tragic – infected with a targeted virus** linked to his girlfriend’s DNA and hence their daughter’s so if he ever touched them again they would die – that is just so painful. (** I think that’s probably unfeasible, but in sci-fi terms alarmingly credible).

    nerys @nerys

    @dentarthurdent I loved No Time To Die. It’s a natural culmination of the Daniel Craig era, though I admit I was surprised that they ended it the way they did. Having watched all four of his Bond films (Casino Royale was the one that hooked me), I felt that there was a tragic trajectory. I think giving Bond a daughter, only to have him sacrifice himself for her and Madeleine, was not a universally popular decision, but the story gave Craig a richer emotional palette to work with than he’d had in the previous three films.

    One criticism of the film is that Rami Malek’s character was not particularly menacing. I disagree. Unlike past Bond arch-villains, I don’t think the point of his character was to focus on him being a global threat (even though he was). When he picked up Mathilde and carried her around, he was absolutely chilling. I really didn’t know what he was going to do … and neither did Bond. That scene was beautifully played by Malek and Craig.

    And isn’t it poetic that when Bond turned back to retrieve Mathilde’s Dou Dou, it sealed his fate?

    Last night we watched Get Out, a 2017 horror film written, co-produced and directed by Jordan Peele. What a brilliant directorial debut! I love any film that makes me think, and when one from the horror genre achieves that, I appreciate it. It also stimulated lots of emotions, mostly sadness and dismay at what the main character goes through. I’ll be contemplating this one for a good long while.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @nerys I’m going to have to do a mini-rewatch of all the Daniel Craig Bond films, since I’m quite hazy about them (in contrast to the Pierce Brosnan ones that I know quite well). The mention of an arc intrigues me. No Time to Die certainly linked back to Vesper Lynd who was in Casino Royale I think.

    I didn’t find Malek particularly chilling, but yes bringing a child into it dramatically increased the threat level. But the villain I thought lacked menace was Blofeld. Just looked too mild. But – as it turned out – that wasn’t hugely significant since Bond promptly killed him. Oops.

    (By the way, sorry for the nitpick, there were five Daniel Craig movies, Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall, Spectre and No Time to Die. And I only know that since I just tripped over it while looking up the timeline.)

    I just googled ‘Get Out’ on Wikipedia and it certainly does sound – scary. I’m sure I’ve come across that brain-transplant idea somewhere recently but I can’t put my finger on it.

    nerys @nerys

    @dentarthurdent Oh, right, thanks for the correction! Quantum of Solace is one I tend to forget. At first I was disappointed in it, then on subsequent viewings came to appreciate it. It was marred by a couple of things: the writers’ strike and disjointed editing of the chase sequences. Apparently Marc Forster was aiming to put the audience into the action, but it had the opposite result for me. And maybe he was trying to compensate for the bare-bones script he was left to work with. But, after I got over my initial disappointment, I still found a lot to like.

    Blofeld was strangely portrayed. I think that was a missed opportunity with Christoph Waltz, who is usually so good. Even in Spectre, he wasn’t as intimidating as I expected. The best arch-villain in Craig’s arc was, in my opinion, Javier Bardem’s Silva in Skyfall. He ticked off all the Bond villain character trait boxes with a gleeful menace.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @nerys Silva? Was he the guy with the private island? (Reminds me a bit of Blofeld’s ‘suicide garden’ in You Only Live Twice (the book version). As does Malek’s garden in No Time to Die, of course). He was good, as I recall. But I need to re-watch the arc.
    My favourite arch-villain (straying from the Craig arc) is Jonathan Price as Murdoch – oops, I mean Elliot Carver, in Tomorrow Never Dies. He somehow has a flaky quality to him as if he’s on the edge of sanity and might lose it at any moment.

    nerys @nerys

    @dentarthurdent Yes, Silva was the one with the island and “mommy issues” with M. Bardem played him beautifully!

    I didn’t much care for the Brosnan era (though I do respect the fact that he helped to bring Bond back from the brink of extinction). As I recall, Tomorrow Never Dies is the Bond film of his I liked best.

    Before Craig, I didn’t really like Bond films at all. The two that did appeal to me were For Your Eyes Only (Roger Moore) and The Living Daylights (Timothy Dalton). After Casino Royale, I reviewed the earlier Sean Connery films and developed a respect for the first four.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @nerys I really liked the first one, Goldeneye. Natalya Simonova is one of my favourite Bond heroines, and Robbie Coltrane as the Russian gangster is one of my favourite Bond allies. And the second, Tomorrow Never Dies, as I said, Jonathan Price as Elliot Carver is the best villain (IMO). And Michelle Yeoh was great as an action heroine in that, too. The other two – the World is Not Enough and Die Another Day – they fell off a bit. Die Another Day also suffered from a couple of bits of appallingly bad CGI, one the burning cargo plane coming to pieces, the other (far worse) where Bond’s ice rocket fell off an ice cliff and he magically ended up CGI-para-surfing towards the beach – they were just so bad I cringed.
    For Your Eyes Only is one of the Roger Moore ones that I do like – partly because by then Roger Moore was getting old enough to fit the part a bit better, and partly (I know this is silly) because of the title song/sequence featuring Sheena Easton. Oh, and the screenplay was good too.
    I recall The Living Daylights as enteraining, reminiscent of From Russia With Love in the plot, I think.
    The low point of the Bond series for me was the later Sean Connery / early Roger Moore ones where the Bond suaveness degenerated to self-parody. Nothing wrong with spy comedy, just that it isn’t James Bond.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @nerys I just watched Quantum of Solace and wow! It’s bloody good! The action sequences were a bit disjointed but the character drama was top-notch. As you found, it gets better on subsequent viewings, particularly with the events of Casino Royale fresh in mind. It had some intriguing nuances – the ‘Bond girl’ hanging around the villain, the CIA in bed with the villain. Felix Leiter (as in Casino Royale) is a quite different actor from the loud gum-chewing Yank of Goldeneye.
    I really liked Mathis, was sad that he got killed – and it was indirectly Bond’s fault for persuading him to go along. I think Camille was a great action heroine (and notably, a Bond girl that James Bond didn’t get to romance). Curious casting counterpoint to Goldeneye – Natalya Simonova (Russian, and one of my favourites) was played by an Italian (Isabella Scorupco), while Camille Montes (Hispanic) was played by Olga Kurylenko (Russian/Ukrainian, living in France).

    I think I may have under-rated QoS previously since I was still not used to Daniel Craig as Bond. Now I am, and maybe appreciate it better.

    nerys @nerys

    @dentarthurdent The first time I saw Quantum of Solace in the cinema, I was so disappointed … but only because I felt it didn’t measure up to Casino Royale. However, on second and subsequent viewings, I came to love it.

    I think it’s incredible that they achieved what they did, given the fact that the writers’ strike meant they had to work with a bare-bones script. I think that’s why we got some of the “low attention span” editing in several scenes, to try to compensate for the lack of script development.

    But other than that, I really do enjoy the film. Like you, I liked Mathis and was sad to see him go. Bond’s handling of Mathis’ body got a lot of flack at the time, but it made sense to me, given who Bond was. And with Jeffrey Wright playing Leiter, you can’t go too far wrong. He’s such a good actor. I’m glad they brought him back for No Time to Die. (Though, speaking of Mathis ….)

    I just saw Olga Kurylenko in The Water Diviner, a 2014 film that marked Russell Crowe’s directorial debut. I thought it was a very good film, and she was very good in it.

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    Now, its a bit different. But yeah, I hope this madness ends. (Edit: Russia-Ukraine War)


    Also, I am a YouTuber who loves Doctor Who, One Piece, and Zelda.

    I just joined not long ago. My YouTube channel is called FlyingFire (@flyingfire14)

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    Oh, and I really want to watch James Bond.

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    Kind of random, but does anyone think James Bond and Doctor Who are connected somehow?

    It just seems like a possibility, due too all the similarities.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @nerys I actually like it better than Casino Royale. Possibly because I’m not a card player so the casino sequences in that didn’t really engage me. Possibly because Bond’s nice new Aston Martin didn’t do anything much except run off the road and roll. The opera sequence was good, by the way – loved the ingenious way Bond got the various Quantum conspirators to blow their cover.

    I just read the Wikipedia page on QoS and it summarised the reviews which were – all over the shop. Which probably reflects the split between the acting/characters – who were good – and the editing – which was choppy. Sadly, there’s no commentary track, which could have clarified a lot. For example the first half of the opening car-chase scene was (I’m certain) one of the north Italian lakes between Garda and Maggiore (so now, in full compulsive-Geek mode, I’m condemned to driving round them all in Googlemaps Streetview to confirm it 🙂 The immediately-following downhill chase down the hairpins from the quarry was probably in the nearby Lombardy mountains, but topographically impossible (unless they elided a lengthy uphill chase in between). This did confuse me at the time.

    I also geekily notice they skipped the invariable ‘gunbarrel’ shot after the titles – they put it in the end credits. Little director’s joke?

    [Edit:] I was wrong, the quarries were almost certainly the Carrara marble quarries, which are 100 miles from the lakes and Siena is 70 miles further. Now I don’t mind them cutting from one location to another in reality, but ‘in-universe’ I’m disconcerted because they got from a lakeside to a mountaintop with just 18 seconds of car chase in between.

    [Further edit:] Easy as pie really. Very first shot, north end of Lake Garda, looking southwest from Torbole, that cliff and mountain around Pregasina is unmistakeable. (I’ve driven down that road in a real car. SS45bis. Positively identified. It’s a narrow road for busy traffic, full of tunnels and galleries. And the road ‘to the quarry’ (not in reality) that Bond swerves onto is SP238 north of Campione. Interestingly, they removed the road signs at the junction (why would they do that?) They missed the most interesting bit, the knife-edge slot gorge/cave that the road shares with the stream that cut it – probably too narrow and tight to make interesting filming). That north Italian hill scenery is insane. Forgive me for geeking out, I’m a happy fulfilled geek for the moment.

    nerys @nerys

    I know the Carpenters are not everyone’s cup of tea. I was a fan as a kid, drifted away when their song choices and arrangements got more syrupy in the late ’70s to early ’80s, then reclaimed their music after Karen died in 1983. I’m currently listening to the 5.1 remixes of their complete Singles 1969-1981 SACD album on YouTube. I love the crystal-clear audiophile quality of these mixes.

    Listening to this through headphones really helps me appreciate one of the all-time great singing voices. Karen sang like no other, and Richard really knew how to arrange, especially for those stacked overdubbed vocal harmonies that he and Karen sang. Hearing her warm, uniquely intimate voice nestled in his superb vocal and instrumental arrangements is an exquisite listening experience … at least for me.

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    I agree with @nerys, the Carpenters are one of the best music groups, but everyone doesn’t need to like what others like. We all have our own opinions. Except, maybe, Reddit users.

    nerys @nerys

    @dwnerdfrommars Karen and Richard suffered from an image problem, especially in the United States. The image was largely manufactured by their record company, A&M, who recognized a cash cow when they saw it and wanted to keep the middle class money rolling in. So the PR department really laid it on thick, when it came to describing the “wholesome” image. Part of this was because they also had no idea how to promote a brother-and-sister act.

    After Richard and Karen both suffered physical setbacks, Richard’s arrangements less inventive, more “by the numbers.” By the time they were both back in the studio to record their last album together, radio had entered the synth-pop age, and the Carpenters were trend-chasing in the hope of regaining their U.S. chart popularity. It just didn’t work.

    But for me, the music is what it’s all about, and they were consummate musicians and professionals. Most of their studio albums reflect this. If people can get past the image and really listen, I think they can hear it. Even if “silly love songs” are not your thing, every artist or group has done them. The Carpenters did them especially well.

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    @nerys @dwnerdfrommars

    To say the 70’s was the decade that taste forgot is ridiculous. But, musically, there was dross of the direst ilk. Was there more dross inflicted in the eighties? Could be. Did the sixties struggle against tinpan ally and an audience of old gits whose only desire was to shove Englebert Humperdink where The Beatles art-school sensibilities did not shine? Damn right!

    The voice of Karen Carpenter soars above all this like a glorious soary thing. And everyone is guilty about how she was allowed to die. Probably because anorexia is still not understood.

    I don’t know anything about her brother. I only know some of the singles. It’s like mainlining apple-pie.  Not sure how her voice does that.

    Abba spent a decade in the sneery hole too. I mean… WHAT?!! There are many cheesy aor acts who deserve oblivion. Yet their worship is compulsory. Tsk. Do people have no ears?

    The BBC just broadcast the Microdisney retrospective. There are only so many times you can listen to the words ‘the greatest band you’ve never heard of’ without tuning out. I’m a fan or I wouldn’t mention them. To tell the truth they were very good and a little flawed.

    But everyone knows The Carpenters.


    winston @winston

    @nerys  @ps1l0v3y0u @dwnerdfrommars

    When I was growing up in the 70s I listened to the Carpenters and I think Karen had a beautiful mellow voice and could sing anything and everything. They were not popular with my Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Alice Cooper loving friends because they were far too cool for “silly love songs” but they didn’t know what they were missing.I love all those bands too but my tastes in music have always been varied and eclectic.

    Stay safe

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    In stark contrast to Karen, Robert Plant’s voice is like being dragged to the dentist. Always preferred Keith Relf.

    Floyd… if only Dave and Richard had been prepared to tell Roger to shut up. I’m a bit picky about prog but it wasn’t all capes and lasers.

    Alice was fun.

    Baccara and The BC Rollers and countless others were abominations. Boney M and Darts were among the strangely classy, probably because they were blessed by a certain strangeness.

    nerys @nerys

    @ps1l0v3y0u If you listen to the stacked vocal harmonies, overdubbed by Karen and Richard and sung perfectly in tune, that’s a result of Richard’s vocal arrangements. It was as characteristic of their sound as Karen’s solo voice. And, because I have hearing loss that started in childhood, I think those vocal harmonies were part of their appeal to me. Because of the overtones created in the vocal harmonies, my brain caused me to hear more sound than was actually there.

    Karen’s eating disorders are well known, sadly. Richard had his own issues and had to enter rehab for Quaalude addiction, which is when Karen recorded her solo album, which A&M shelved, which led to her disastrous marriage, worsening her anorexia nervosa and bulimia … though she made a halfhearted attempt to get treatment. Anorexia nervosa wasn’t well understood then, but anyone who had experienced it knew, even then, that it couldn’t be cured through an hour-long outpatient session.

    People have forgotten that, besides being a remarkable singer, Karen was also a good drummer … at a time when it wasn’t really accepted for women to play drums. I have always believed that Karen having to largely give up her beloved drums, in favor of sending her to the front of the stage as the star singer, is part of what led to her descent into eating disorders. The sheer joy on her face as she played shows me how much she loved it. This is one of my favorite clips of her singing and playing live: The Ed Sullivan show

    @winston Yes, Karen could sing it all. It’s sad to think of what might have been, had she lived. The music she could have made? But beyond that, I like to think that her life would have been richer and more rewarding. Such a tragedy.

    winston @winston

    @ps1l0v3y0u Oh the music of the 70s, the ridiculous and the sublime.  I think if you can’t be traditionally good then you better be strange or interesting.

    My younger sister loved the Bay City Rollers as only a 12 year could and her bedroom here in Canada had more tartan than a Highland Games.

    Mind you I can’t say anything because at 12 I was in love with Donnie Osmond right down to my purple socks! A few years before that my older sister was a huge Beatles fan and I spent many hours listening to her collection of records.

    Stay safe.

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    I have to be honest. The 70s was a very underrated time for music.

    Lots of people stereotype this era as “bad singing” or “lots of voice cracking”, sure there are bad songs, but not ALL of them.


    Question: Who’s hand was that at the end of The Giggle that picked up the golden tooth?

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    @dwnerdfrommars @winston

    THE HAND… reference to Last of The Time Lords… the means via which John Simm resurrected himself. I hope RTD doesn’t revisit that… it was in the worst possible taste, if not quite as bad as Anthony Ainley’s most extreme scenery chewing.

    You will notice there is no wheelchair evident in the preceding shots…

    Thanks for the Karen clip @nerys. I love watching open air footage of late 60’s early 70’s. My favourite is the MC5’s Tatar Field film from 1970. I’ve come to them very late.

    Maybe the problem with the 70’s was Raack vs the rest (principally disco maybe reggae too). Most 70’s raack couldn’t crack a smile. I still run into this, people who sneer at the likes of The Move. I know Chris Brunton thought Floyd did.

    In the words of Peter Buck ‘rock n roll is a joke and the butt of the joke are those who take it seriously.’

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    Anyone have any Series 14 finale theories?

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    <p style=”text-align: left;”>@dwnerdfrommars</p>
    <p style=”text-align: left;”>Do you mean The Giggler or Church on Ruby Road?</p>
    Go to ‘forums’; it’s all there.

    Either way… THE HAND gets many mentions. Waiting for the meme with said HAND and the spoken words: ‘that’s the spirit Thing, lend a hand…’

    Otherwise… the Goblin Song got a lot of thumbs down. I thought it was acceptable and refreshing.

    There was also the recurrent theme of foundlings and orphans. New query… what was Bill short for? Could it be LuluBELLE? I can’t let Lulubelle go… it’s like RTD is poking me with a stick. Blame Floyd.

    Some people didn’t like the Goblin ship disintegrating: as if nothing like that has happened in Who before. The consensus is reality is in danger because of salt. Beats z neutrinos.

    The big question, flagged by RTD at the beginning and end, was Mrs Flood. My money is on pre Mel River.

    But then I home in on my own private DW theories, over which the kind souls here do laugh at and furiously scribble notes…



    winston @winston

    My fellow Whovians, I am laying in a hospital bed waiting for emergency surgery on my knee after a half assed fall that caused way more damage than it should have.My fibia has driven into my tibia causing a plateau fracture that requires a plate and screws as well as bone filler. I will be in bed for at least 6 weeks which sounds horrible.Surgery some time tomorrow so wish me luck. It is so painful and although I am drugged up it still hurts 🤕 like a very hurty thing and I am terrified of everything.

    Stay off ladders and stay safe.

    janetteB @janetteb

    @winston. Sorry to hear about that. I am wishing you all the luck possible and hope you will be back on your feet soon and in the meantime that you have lots of books to read and Dr Who to watch.

    Best wishes


    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @winston I’ll just wish you the very best with your operation, and your six weeks’ enforced bed rest.

    I have no idea if this will help, but when I had a heart valve repair about 15 years ago, I almost enjoyed the ‘holiday’. NOT the operation itself (which of course I have no recollection of whatever), but the week I spent in hospital afterwards. It was such a novel experience to be lying in bed, doing absolutely nothing, (which would normally make me feel quite guilty because I should be doing something constructive), with an absolutely cast-iron excuse to just relax and be totally lazy for once. I don’t know if you can lull yourself into that frame of mind but it might help.

    One other thing, I took books and portable CD player and headphones – I found I never read the books, took too much mental effort, but the CD player I used almost full time. If one is trying to rest, and getting into the most comfortable position, sometimes listening to music is the most relaxing thing. I guess the current equivalent would be a MP3 player.

    But anyway, best of luck with the operation.

    janetteB @janetteb

    @dentarthurdent and @winston I second the MP3 player suggestion. When I was in icu I had four cd’s and listened to them over and over. The music really helped but I also read a lot, all books I was familiar with starting with Pride and Prejudice which made me laugh, I think I owe my life to Mrs Bennett aka Alison Steadman, followed by Lord of the Rings. Audio books would also be good and radio plays if you can get hold of them. Might be a good time to listen to some Big Finish productions.



    winston @winston

    @janetteb @dentarthurdent The surgery was successful and I now have some screws and a plate to hold it in place. It was a very hard and painful night and the morning doesn’t feel any better but I am still here if not still standing. We just bought a ton of new flooring but the mister will be on his own putting it together unless the sons help. I will have to call in some favours. And my garden will be fending for itself. It was just a two rung 🪜. I hate that ladder. I am  far too distracted by pain to read or watch anything so far. The nurses are very kind so that helps. 6 weeks putting no pressure at all on my leg and than months of physiotherapy is not good but I have no choice. Gotta go.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @winston Well it’s great to hear your surgery was a success. But I’m sorry to hear that you’re still in pain. I had assumed they could give painkillers for it but I was forgetting that that seems to be an area where medical science isn’t yet perfect, no such thing as a 100% effective yet completely harmless painkiller. Hopefully the pain will diminish over the next few days.

    I’m afraid I’m not very good at expressing sympathy. (Just like the 13th Doctor, come to think of it.) I’ll just wish you the best for your recovery.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @nerys Resuming the James Bond theme, I just watched Skyfall and Spectre. Skyfall was quite good (I gather it’s highly regarded amongst the Bond genre), though I do have to question his wisdom in taking M to a deserted house in the highlands without stocking up from Q’s gadget collection first. And I thought the new Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) was quite delightful, but I do have a slight continuity problem in that she’s suddenly brown. I can rationalise the changing M’s and Q’s in that they’re a position, not a person, but Moneypenny is very much a person, dammit. (But then, Bond…)

    Spectre tried to outdo Skyfall and failed. It’s actually quite a good film, though I had a couple of problems – one was when Bond was chasing the Land Rovers down the mountain using a Britten-Norman Islander (where did he get that from) – 40 knot stall speed so IF the Land Rovers were going flat out on snow (but why would they?) he could stick behind them, but then he knocked the wings off, how could he ever control the direction to intercept them down slope? Never mind. And the other one was, escaping from the desert lair, he fires one shot at a gas tank and the entire building complex explodes. In fact that whole escape was just far too easy, one exploding wristwatch and he walks out of it with Madeleine. ‘With one bound, he was free’. It should have been far more difficult than that.

    The other thing that intrigued me in retrospect, when I watched No Time to Die, (and I’d long since forgotten ‘Spectre’), the opening ‘home alone’ scene with young Madeleine Swann seemed quite un-Bond-movie like, and so the switch to adult Madeleine with Bond was an abrupt transition, but it was evident that she was the same girl, grown up, and had ‘somehow’ hooked up with Bond. Imagine my fascination then, when I saw Madeleine describing that whole scene with precision in ‘Spectre’, and realised No Time to Die was an exact follow-on from the end of Spectre. Continuity? In a Bond movie?

    winston @winston

    @dentarthurdent @janetteb Thanks for the well wishes. Day 6 and still in bed most of the day but today I feel a bit more human. Cons- can’t move without help, missing the tulips and daffodils, can’t bath except from a bowl, mister Winston does not know where anything is, pain, boredom… more to come. Pros – I can watch old Who all I want, eat what I want, whine and moan about everything, pills that send me to la-la land and I can’t find anything else now.

    I did watch 4th Doctor this morning, I think called Rise of the Cybermen with Harry and Sarah Jane and the scarf. I am pretty high so I might be wrong. I found myself liking it but giggling at some fx. But again I am pretty high.

    I can’t walk on this for 6 to 8 weeks with months of physiotherapy afterwards so I better get used to it.

    I hope the weather and everything else is good for you both. I suspect my fellow Whovians will be hearing from me a lot in the days to come so I will apologize ahead of time for that. SORRY!!

    Stay sane I know I will be trying.

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    Revenge of the Cybermen featuring The Vogans. (NOT Vogons).

    Not THAT bad; better than Robot, but poor after Ark or Genesis. The Zygons and Planet of Evil are a bit clunky too. The Android Invasion however is better than I remembered.

    I am revisiting 4 too.

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @winston Good to hear you’re slowly recovering, though it must seem too slow. Hopefully you’ll be able to enjoy summer when it arrives. DON’T apologise for posting, I’m sure we don’t mind as long as Craig tolerates us all (and he’s usually remarkably tolerant 🙂

    Our weather, since you mention it, has been poor for the last week. I had a swim a couple of weeks ago, water was just okay, that might have been my last for the season: since then the weather’s been poor, the tides have been useless and I’ve had gout. So a fine day might tempt me out to see if the water’s still okay, or it might not.

    I’m about to fish out my Season 11(?) DVDs – that’s the first season of Whitdoc I think – and view a few selected episodes. See if they’ve improved in the interim. Also, old episodes of Danger Man, they got quite good towards the end of Season 2.

    dwnerdfrommars @dwnerdfrommars

    Unpopular opinion: Pineapple is fine on pizza and Colin Baker is the best Doctor. (I’m joking. He’s not.)



    @winston, hope you do well.

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    Pineapple? Hmmm.

    NOT mmmm!

    Colin Baker… pretty much the same. Hilarity was there to be had: Varos, 2 Doctors (controversial I know), Revelation, even the weird and not that wonderful Timelash. Also the mindboggling Mindwarp.

    You have to remember the welcome contrast between the second Baker and the Davison ‘surrender monkey’ era. Maybe putting two fingers up at Grade and Whitehouse was not a great idea. But some people cheered at the time, me amongst them. Twin Dilemma, however, was a disaster of biblical proportions (though personally I think Time Flight was worse).

    None of which was Col’s fault. Can I say Nichola Bryant was easy on the eye? A quality oft mentioned in defence of Tennant you know. But the accent JNT demanded of her was ridiculous. Bonnie Langford, in contrast, made you both squint and cover your ears. Or, if you could, leave the room.

    winston @winston

    @dwnerdfrommars Thank you for the well wishes. I am doing Ok although I don’t like sitting or lying around all the time. I feel like Jabba the Hut lying around waiting for someone to come feed me. Maybe they will bring me a pizza with pineapple on it. (I love it)

    I do agree with you and @ps1l0v3y0u about the 6th Doctor. The silly costume didn’t help him and contrasted so much with his serious and crusty personality. There are some good stories in there but I always think of him as a clownish sort of Doctor.Of course he is the Doctor whether we like it or not.

    I hope you are all well and that your pizza comes just the way you like it.

    Stay safe

    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @winston I agree about the awfulness of the 6th Doctor’s outfit. I recall Seven complaining about the jumper with question marks on it – he didn’t know how lucky he was. (Well actually, he must have seen Six’s amazing technicolor dreamcoat so maybe he did know). Seven of course actually was/is a clown by disposition, but like all good comedians he knew when to play it straight and could be quite sinister when called for.

    The next most awful outfit after 6’s must have been 13’s (Whittaker) by the way, that looked like a clown suit too. Or, those horizontal stripes across her chest and the long coat make her look like Heidi the Goat Girl from some cartoon fairy story. Though not remotely as bad as poor old Six, what were they thinking?

    Incidentally, pineapple on pizza is great. I wish you many happy pizzas (Not too too many, mind, lest you start to look like Jabba the Hutt too 🙂

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    @dentarthurdent @winston @dwnerdfrommars

    6 (and Nichola Bryant) undoubtedly copped the worst excesses of Nathan Turner and Saward. Not that 5 didn’t also suffer: The Myrka; Turlough going crazy; Anthony Ainley going crazy; the correct way to milk a giant bat…

    But Nathan Turner’s sartorial sensibilities were as nothing compared to Saward’s instinct for the gruesome. Mooks in acid baths; you got it! Cyber crushing hand torture? Cool! Menace Peri with sexual threat and cannibalism? Mmmm. Can I have pineapple with that? Oh and can someone chisel this Starship Trooper out of the giant slug trail?

    Truly, a production team made in hell!

    janetteB @janetteb

    @winston. glad to hear you are recovering. Do take it easy and make the most of the rest. It is a wonderful opportunity to read and watch things. (and eat pizza 🙂 even listen to some podcasts.

    & @dentarthurdent and @ps1l0v3y0u (see if I get it right this time..) and @dwnerdfrommars

    I had stopped watching Dr Who by the Baker2 years and feel that I did not miss much. I was biased against C.B because of other roles I had seen him in. He was really good at portraying unpleasant characters. I think he was poorly cast as the Doctor and certainly the production design, direction and script writing did not do him any favours. I considerably softened my view of him after watching The Five-ish Doctors Reboot but I have not gone back and watched those episodes however,,.. however, this year I am introducing a C.B. story to the podcast team and would appreciate advice on which I should pick. I don’t know as yet as to whether I should chose one of the best or the worst.

    It is about my turn to bring something really bad to the table. Every year we have one “dud” that we review. Last year it was the Star War’s Holiday Special and I don’t think we will ever do worse than that..




    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    wow that’s a tricky brief.

    My personal fave (?) is the Two Doctors… though it is overlong, with a ridiculously decrepit 2nd Doctor and Jamie, and even more ludicrous Sontarans. Violence (tick).

    I haven’t seen Revelation of the Daleks since the first broadcast. That impression was favourable. But it is a Dalek story WITH Davros. Generally reviewed positively.

    Vengeance on Varos is mistitled, absurdly violent/exploitative and hilarious, especially given JNT and Saward were trying to meta ‘video nasties.’ The story might have stood up in any season.

    The two shockers must be Mindwarp… worth watching just for Peri’s demise… otherwise pretty incomprehensible. And of course, Twin Dilemma is both utterly ridiculous and offensive. An incomplete story by a non sci fi writer, transformed by script editor Saward into a true abomination. But at least it didn’t have Anthony Ainley.

    Yes my people, Time Flight WAS worse. Just.

    Twin Dilemma is an aberration; don’t judge CB or even the production team on that eye-watering nightmare. The Ultimate Foe is also a nasty rewrite, and Timelash makes you giggle in a bad way. The rest was watchable if sad because this was the season that killed the show. Cartmel could only delay the inevitable.


    Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent

    @janetteb @ps1l0v3y0u I too missed the Baker years (both Bakers!) so I really can’t comment on them. (I’m very slowly nudging back into oldWho territory from the back end, so to speak, i.e. Seven’s last season.) Colin Baker does (from what little I’ve seen) appear to be an abrasive character, though he was okay in the Five-ish Doctors.

    But on the subject of Worst Episode Ever (that I’ve seen, which effectively means NuWho) – Love and Monsters wasn’t that bad if you overlook the slightly cringey reference at the end. I think I’d nominate The Tsuranga Conundrum which I’m about to watch skip over in my sketchy voyage through Season 11. All I remember is two things – the naffest cutesy cartoon monster ever (they might have got away with it in Red Dwarf, it would fit right in) and the man who was pregnant, which probably sounded like a neat ‘what-if’ idea until they actually tried to implement it when it fell flat with a soggy splat. If there are any worse episodes than that they’ve mercifully faded from my memory.

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    @dentautherdent what you have to remember about Love and Monsters is that the monster played by Peter Kay was the result of a competition run by the BBC run in UK Schools. If I  remember right part  of the competition was to submit a plot outline along with a ‘picture’ of the monster and as I remember the winner was a 10 year old.😝🤣😂😛 so no wonder the the monster was a bit naff.

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