Sunday 24 August 2014

Deep Breath (live)

One measures a circle beginning anywhere.
- Charles Fort


Don’t ruin it. 
– Zoë Ball

Me:  So, that was Deep Breath.  Did it feel like ages since we’d last seen any new Doctor Who to you?

Him:  Yeah.

Me:  We watched all the World Tour video recaps in preparation before we left for the cinema – and the countdowns too – we watched those all in one go.  Did that help build up your enthusiasm?

Him:  No.

Me:  Ha!  And we watched…  Let’s see…  We watched quite a bit.  We watched The Name of the Doctor, The Night of the Doctor-

Him:  Which one’s Night of the Doctor?

Me:  It’s the one that doesn’t count.

Him:  Yes, we did watch Night of the Doctor.  There are too many ‘Of the Doctor’s to keep track of.  Night of the Living Doctor being one of them.

Me:  And then we watched Dawn of the Doctor, Day of the Doctor-

Him:  I’ve already made that joke!

Me:  City of the Living Doctor, Land of the Doctor, Diary of the Doctor and Survival of the Doctor, which was rubbish.  Ummm…  Simon Pegg – who didn’t play the Master was-  Oh!  That reminds me.  Missy!


Him:  Yeah?

Me:  Who d’you think Missy is?

Him:  I’m not sure that…  I care at this moment in time.  But, I’m sure that Steven Moffat will make us care.

Me:  I think so.

Him:  She’ll probably be him as a child.

Me:  Ha!  Well, there’s rumblings about River Song and, “It’s short for ‘Mistress’.”  So maybe we could be looking at a female Master, which I think’d be quite good.  Michelle Gomez is very good in the part from what we’ve seen.  I had a bit of a thought that I’ve not seen mentioned anywhere else yet.

Him:  Okay.

Me:  Could be Miss Evangelista.  Because she’s kind of uploaded to heaven.

Him:  Yeah, true.

Me:  And then that could tie in with River Song.  We’ll have to wait and see what happens.  I’m quite excited by the whole thing.1  Alright, what did you think of the Paternoster Gang in Deep Breath?

Him:  Well, they’re in everything.

Me:  Do you think they should have a spin-off series?

Him:  I think if they had a spin-off series then Steven Moffat would write it and maybe just do that forever. 

Me:  It’d give him something to do later on, wouldn’t it?  I think they’re worth a series.  I’m going to hide my ‘review’ in the footnotes, because a lot of what I want to say is a little bit different to, possibly, what our regular readers might be expecting.

Him:  Did you think it was terrible?  You did!  You thought it was terrible, didn’t you?

Me:  You’ll have to keep reading to find out.

Him:  I want to know now.


Me:  I’ve renamed the ages on the psychoGEOLOGY page and that should give anyone who’s really that interested an idea of what I thought about it.  The Matt Smith era is now the Second Silver Age-

Him:  You should’ve left it as the Second Golden Age and made this the ‘Capaldage’.

Me:  Ha!  I should’ve!  Do you think they spent too much time on him being old?

Him:  Maybe.

Me:  It’s talked about a lot within the episode, which is really weird because it’s not like Clara’s unaware of regeneration seeing as she’s sat in his regeneration stream and counted them.

Him:  True.

Me:  So, that seemed a little bit odd.  And then-

Him:  And after she’s seen Colin Baker, she should really be sure that he can transform into anything.

Me:  Oh!  Right.  We saw it in the top floor of a car park.  It was massive-

Him:  It was actually the second floor of a car park.

Me:  Alright then.  It was pretty big.  It took up the whole of the floor by the feel of it.

Him:  Well, the second floor’s got very few screens just because that one is so big.

Me:  That’s probably why.  It hadn’t sold out, even though it was supposed to-

Him:  I think some people just didn’t show up.3

Me:  When we got there the foyer was packed.  I haven’t seen this before – there was a Dalek usher checking tickets and things.  We’d only just flown in from the Arctic-  I noticed members of Glasgow Who hanging around there.  There’s a bit of link with Glasgow Who and Peter Capaldi and the time I ‘met’ Peter Capaldi, so I’ll-

Him:  It was all in Glasgow.

Me:  It was.  I’ll put a link here to that one. 

Him:  That’s nice.

Me:  Extra features.  We had a few.

Him:  A total of eighteen minutes of bonus material.

Me:  And what was the first one of those?

Him:  I’ll leave that to you to explain.

Me:  As before, when we saw The Day of the Doctor – but not, oddly enough, when we saw Monty Python (Mostly) Live – there was a brief introduction from Strax.  He was explaining the whole process of regeneration for anyone who’d casually, accidentally spent a load of money buying a ticket to go and see something that they could’ve watched at home for free.  I don’t know how many new viewers the BBC were expecting to pick up in however many cinemas it was being broadcast in- 

Him:  You loved the introduction. 

Me:  I thought it was great.  I hope Steven Moffat wrote that.  I’ll be a bit disappointed if it turns out to be written by someone else and I’m praising them simply because I didn’t see a credit for it.  I’ve got bias to maintain here.  I thought it was really good.  Some of it was a little bit forced.  To be honest, that bit had – as with the majority of extra Who material – it’s the Murray Gold music that sounds really forced.  It didn’t match the action.  Someone’s just pressed play at the start of the scene and left the track in there.  It’s like temp music you’d find on a workprint or something, it’s just been left in as an approximation that really doesn’t add to it.  They’d be better leaving it off or writing something new.  But I’m going to talk about Murray Gold properly in the ‘review’. 

Him:  You love him. 

Me:  I though the way Strax broke down all the different regenerations was terrific.  The misunderstanding for comic effect worked well throughout.  It was a treat hearing that many people laugh- 

Him:  People tend to laugh when things are funny. 

Me:  So, who did we see?  There was a guy dressed up as the Fifth Doctor. 

Him:  Yep.  There was another guy dressed up as Peter Davison. 

Me:  Ha!  There were a couple of people dressed up as the Fourth Doctor.  Quite a few bow ties and fezzes, the odd Mohican – I can’t remember which Doctor that was, probably one we haven’t had yet.  So, that was the first thing.  Then we had the main show…  The new titles.  Do you like them? 

Him:  No.  But, I’m never a fan of them.  The music’s alright, it’s just so… bizarre.

Me:  I’m going to say that I think the music’s a vast improvement on the tosh that we’ve had to put up with for the last few years.  Having said that, there was one variation of the Tennant theme that must’ve gone a bit Delaware and escaped…  It sounded really powerful and…  I liked it for a moment.  That was a while back.  Okay, what did you think of the Half-Face Man?  Did you think they were scary? 

Him:  Who’s ‘they’? 

Me:  All the clockwork lot. 

Him:  There’s something about things that don’t move the way they should that I don’t like. 

Me:  That’s what they’re going for.  The movement was really good and the sounds- 


Me:  Did you notice London was invaded by a dinosaur? 

Him:  Yeah, I was there. 

Me:  Pretty good dinosaur effect.  In London.  Jon Pertwee reference? 

Him:  No.4 

Me:  The whole ‘regeneration episode’ thing, did you think Peter Capaldi did it well?  All the disorientation-while-your-brain’s-rebooting-and-all-that. 

Him:  Yeah.

Me:  There’s a couple of things that I want to come back to that tie-in with the extra bit at the end.  After the episode had finished, we had a rebooted Doctor Who Confidential with the wrong name – more DVD extra stuff.  It makes sense.  There’s been so much time and energy invested that there should be makings-of, there really should. 

Him:  “Because that’s how you ruin the experience.” 

Me:   Yeah.  It was a bit of a pain having to sit through it in the cinema without the option of going straight to the Q and A.  It’s just an electronic press kit really, VAM to be stuck on the end of a DVD, or the Red Button, as a lightweight distraction.5  The presenter was too enthusiastic as well, like being bludgeoned by a puppy that’s really, really missed you.  It’d be nice for the BBC to tone that sort of thing down.  It feels as though the whole series has slowed down going on- 

Him:  That’s because the episode was longer. 

Me:  They slowed down the scenes to give them a chance to breath, is that what you mean?  And no, I didn’t intend the pun. 

Him:  Yeah. 

Me:  The second-  No, the third piece of additional exclusive bonus material- 

Him:  Oh yeah. 

Me:  -was the Q and A session between Zoe Ball, Steven Moffat, Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman.  Interestingly, the only person who made a mistake and looked mortified-  Did you notice it?  Peter Capaldi got Nicholas Courtney’s name wrong and made it sound like Nick Briggs had passed on.  I felt really bad for him.  The pressure must’ve been immense and after the tour and the hype frenzy, his head must be whirling. 

Him:  Yeah. 

Me:  You could tell that wasn’t just-  Not like the Hound's gaffe.

Him:  Well, that wasn’t intentional either. 

Me:  No, but there’d be more sympathy from me if the Hound hadn’t been so rude about fans. 

Him:  You’re going to cut this bit out, aren’t you? 

Me:  Some of it.  Steven Moffat came across brilliantly.  In my opinion.  He was self-deprecating and…  I think we’ve been giving him far too hard a ride.  Genuinely.  He’s got an impossible job.  Did you think the balance was right between the humour and the- 

Him:  It was a lot funnier with Peter Capaldi than it was with Matt Smith, oddly enough.  Maybe that’s because it’s the first episode with him and every single joke in the series’ll have been pushed into there and the rest of it’ll be really dull and bland. 

Me:  Or it’ll just get grimmer and grimmer. 

Him:  Uh-huh. 

Me:   Don’t worry, Mark Gatiss has written one, so I’m sure that they’ll be jokes a’plenty. 

Him:  You loved The Crimson Horror. 

Me:   I thought The Crimson ‘orror was really good.  The best thing Gatiss has written for the series.  That’s because it’s one that really plays to his strengths. 

Him:  What are his strengths? 

Me:  Writing stuff that sounds like League of Gentleman.  Pastiche.  Sketches.  Grotesques.  Or Horror Documentaries.  We sort of started talking about Peter Capaldi, so let’s keep going.  He said the moment you see how he’s going to play the Doctor is the very final scene with him in it, the phonecall.  What did you think of that scene?  Were you expecting anything like that?

Him:  It’s Steven Moffat.  If you’re expecting something then he’s not going to do it. 

Me:  Alright.  That’s good.  Peter Capaldi’s been waiting all his life to do this.  What about Jenna Coleman as Clara?  It’s a different companion dynamic now to the way that it was with Matt Smith.  The whole, “I’m not your boyfriend,” draws a line under… something.  I’ve seen comments from people who feel that the phone-call scene was put in to please fangirls, but that seems like a rum way of looking at it.  I think it’s there to ease the transition across- 

Him:  “Yes!  They’re gone.” 

Me:  That was the reaction of fans who’re approaching it- I read some terrible things in a comments section on [redacted on lawyer’s advice] that really shocked me.  It doesn’t say much about the state of fandom- 

Him:   Are you going to tell me what these things were? 

Me:   No. 

Him:  You can leave it out of the actual- 

Me:  I’ll tell you later.  Let’s wrap up then.  Do you think there should be more Doctor Who in the cinema? 

Him:  It seemed a bit random to put it in the cinema. 

Me:  Why’d they do it? 

Him:  To hype it up again, since it’s been several years since we last had a Doctor Who episode. 

Me:  Ha! 

Him:  This year we’re only getting two and then in three years time we’ll get the next two. 

Me:   Nah.  It’s a full run of twelve, all in one go.  No breaks. 

Him:  Well, that’s familiar.  Like years and years ago. 

Me:  Are you looking forward to the rest of the series? 

Him:  Are you? 

Me:   Yeah, I am.  Very much.  Do you think he’s going to be a good Doctor? 

Him:  Yeah. 

Me:   Me too.  Alright, I’ll stick my review under this and we should probably just make barnyard noises for a while. 

Him:  “MOOO!” 

Me:  MAN YAK!”  Oh!  One thing I almost forgot to point out...1

1.  Me:  So, when the Doctor and Clara descend into the pit under Mancini’s, and they’re surrounded by all the clockwork droids – ‘cause it’s the sequel to The Girl in the Fireplace, of course.  I thought this was a much better episode than The Girl in the Fireplace, because I’m one of the few people who think that one’s quite hokey and not really very good at all…  I’ll just put that in there. 

Him:  You loved it when you first saw it.  As opposed to Tooth and Claw, which you hated. 

Me:  You’re allowed to change your mind about things. 

Him:  But that’s such a weird change of mind. 

Me:  Okay, I now think The Girl in the Fireplace is horrendously over-rated, in much the same way that I think Vincent and the Doctor is actually a dangerously misjudged piece of television and one of the worst things that’s been shown as part of the series.  But that’s just my opinion. 

Him:  “And everyone else should think that.”2 

Me:  Not at all, people should- 

Him:  “No-one should think that.”

Me:  Ha!  People should reach their own conclusions about these things.  I’m just saying how I see things and not telling people how to think.  Now then, if you look in the Mancini basement alcoves you’ll notice that one of the clockwork droids looks an awful lot like it should be in The Mind Robber.  Now, I wonder whether or not, maybe Missy is the Master.  "But probably not the one you were expecting." 


Him:  Okay… 

Me:  Because the Master first appeared – well, apart from The Space Museum, where the Doctor decided he was the Master.  And a Dalek. – The Master first appeared in The Mind Robber, as a character who’d later crop up in Promethea.  In fact, this ties in nicely with stuff that I’ve been saying about the Doctor being a fictional construct- 

Him:  Yawn.

Me:  -and whether or not…  Well, it’s my theory about The Chase, which I should probably reveal at some point soon, just in case it turns out that’s what’s going on in the next series.  It’s the World of Fiction.  Now, it’s not impossible that what we’re seeing here is that we’re in the World of Fiction. 


Him:   Yeees… 

Me:  And why not?  The Doctor is – like I’ve said before – real. How important are the faces we wear?  Can we trust them?  Let’s reflect upon reflections – we’ve seen a mirror lie before after all.


Me:  That’s for another day.  I’ll have to explain why The Chase is one of the greatest pieces of- 

Him:  Yeah, because you still won’t say. 

Me:  No.  Although I’ve hinted at it a few times.  Okay.  Thanks for playing.6

2.  Over the past few weeks, I’ve noticed there’re a few people in fandom – not all of them on forums - who seem to believe this, loudly, which is a shame.

3.   As part of the obligatory Car Park Attendant’s speech – “Exits are located here, here and there.  In the event of a fire, it’s the end.” etc. – whoever was sitting in seat K9 was offered complimentary buckets of popcorn and carbonated sugar fluid.  The seat was unoccupied. 

4.  Yeah, it was, and it was one of lots.  I’m hesitant about using the term ‘kisses to the past’ for several reasons, most of them being that the obvious references have vastly annoyed a surprising amount of fans (if the internet’s to be believed) whilst the ones they missed didn’t bug ‘em at all.  We’ll get back to The Mind Robber earlier.1 

5.  Like Night of the Doctor.

6.  Deep Breath ‘review’.  Apart from the fact that every department, including music, has – finally - given itself a kick up the backside/moved up a gear, see above for full details.

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