Monday, September 05, 2011

doctor who, season six, part one

(more or less spoiler free--i think)

as hurricane irene approached last weekend and others were stockpiling food and water, i downloaded part one of season six of doctor who onto my ipad. i don't get BBC america, so i couldn't watch them when they aired. but my whovian friends all raved about the new season when the first part was airing earlier this year.

i watched all seven episodes over the past week and i must say it was pretty disappointing. first, it really pisses me off that they decided to divide the season into a part one and part two, each with its own DVD collection to be purchased separately. battlestar galactica did that after it became popular and it seemed like the only purpose was to soak the show's fans by getting them to buy twice as many DVD sets. i guess the BBC couldn't resist trying to suck more money out of dr. who fans. but honestly this kind of bullshit just encourages me to download the episodes illegally.

as for the half season itself, part one felt really rushed. the first episode showed a lot of promise. but then the problems started with the second episode, in which a ton of stuff happened off screen, leaving me, the viewer, a lot less engaged with the story. the same thing happened in episode seven. an entire war is set up and then over, from the armies being assembled to the messy aftermath, all in 45 minutes.

it occurs to me that my second beef might be related to my first. maybe the creators felt like they needed to cram an entire story arc (albeit one with a bunch of unresolved threads, presumably to be resolved in part two) into a mere seven episodes. but for that marketing decision maybe they would have stretching those seven into a full season. we'll never know, of course. but still, while i still count myself a fan (and i will make sure to see part two), it really was disappointing.

so why is everyone calling this such a great season? i will keep watching. i just hope they slow it down a little, go back to methodically building up to the finale, rather than thrusting it upon us when we're still trying to figure out why, for example, the doctor never came across the silence in 770 previous episodes if they were there from the dawn of history to 1969.