Bio not provided
In addition to what VictorWong1 said (which is correct), there's also the matter of Meta-Crisis Ten. In the Series 4 finale, the Tenth Doctor began to regenerate after being "killed" by a Dalek, but managed to stop the process without having to change his face by siphoning the rest of the regeneration energy into his severed (but regrown) hand from The Christmas Invasion. Most fans at the time didn't count it as a regeneration, but in Matt Smith's final episode - The Time of the Doctor - it was retconned in that it was a real regeneration and did count toward the limit of 13 incarnations that every Time Lord has (though the Doctor later got a whole new cycle of regenerations). So some people, though very few, also count that - which would make Capaldi's incarnation the character's 14th in total, if you're counting both the War Doctor and the Meta-Crisis regeneration. But things are much more confusing that way, since we'd need to re-order all of the recent Doctors - the Ninth being the Tenth, the Tenth being the Eleventh and the Twelfth, the Eleventh being the Thirteenth, etc. So the BBC (and therefore much of the fandom) don't officially count the War or Meta Crisis Doctors in their ordering (they're anomalies), just to keep things simple.
19 hours, 57 minutes ago on A Hint on Jenna Coleman’s Future?
From a real-life point of view, yes, I'd agree with you. But within the narrative, there's not always been any real reason. It's just been about keeping the show fresh for viewers.
2 days, 22 hours ago on Capaldi Didn’t Want Twelve to Be Likeable
Not entirely sure what you mean; I don't see any continuity problems in Capaldi's incarnation. Every Doctor has been different, that's the nature of regeneration. He doesn't choose his personality (unless the Sisterhood of Karn get involved). I know that under RTD, there were reasons given for the new Doctor being the way he is (fighting the Time War for ol' Ecclecakes and being 'redeemed' by Rose for Tennant), but not every Doctor has had such clear-cut reasons for regenerating into the man that he does.
Tomato, tomato (please add the appropriate pronunciations mentally; message boards aren't great for conveying inflection).
Completely understand where you're coming from, but I prefer not to think of it in those terms - feels too reboot-ish for my liking (I know it's not a reboot, but by picturing him as Hartnell 2.0 it starts to feel that way). He does have commonalities with Hartnell, but equally he has commonalities with other Doctors; you can see glimmers of Three, Six, Seven, Nine (and probably others) in there too. It's a very informed performance that draws upon a lot of the show's (and character's) history. I'm confident that, in time, his arc will prove itself different to both C. Baker and Hartnell - but I fully understand both comparisons.
That's what I like about him. I loved the warmth and exuberance of Tennant and Smith, but I think Capaldi would have struggled to establish himself if he tried to emulate their style(s). The persona he's given us, like it or loathe it, has made an immediate impact and really entrenched him into the role. I would dare say, however, that he'll lighten up a bit as his era progresses. I think he's on a similar character arc to that intended for Colin Baker - hopefully this time we'll see it through, though.
Can't argue with them? I can barely comprehend them. Still, I'm pretty sure it was an insightful article - just waiting for my friend at NASA to confirm.
3 days, 15 hours ago on Series 8: A Numbery-Wumbery Breakdown
I'd have to disagree with that. Although he's still managed to churn out some gems that are at least on par, on the whole Moffat's 'Moffat Era' scripts have been somewhat hit-and-miss for me, whereas under RTD I genuinely feel he wrote the best - or one of the best - stories of each individual series. Which is pretty good going when you're only writing one a year.
4 days, 21 hours ago on Moffat’s Best Monsters, Tricks & Stories (So Far)
No need for whacking of the head-table variety, easy mistake to make - especially when the whole point is to illustrate how tricky and deceptive Moffat's writing is. You practically proved yourself right by getting it wrong.
Regarding "The Doctor has a secret he will take to his grave" - I think the author has got it the wrong way round here. It wasn't that we were to assume it meant his grave when it meant it his secret, it was the other way around. "You didn't listen, did you? You lot never do! That's the problem. "The Doctor has a secret he will take to the grave. It is discovered." He wasn't talking about my secret. No no no, that's not what's been found. He was talking about my grave. Trenzalore is where I'm buried." Otherwise, great article (even if there are a few glaring omissions - how Blink isn't amongst Moffat's top 6 stories, I'll never know).
4 days, 23 hours ago on Moffat’s Best Monsters, Tricks & Stories (So Far)
I'm no expert, so I fully accept I may be wrong here, but I really don't think that young viewers are really that obsessed with the Daleks. Yeah, they're popular - of course they are. Even much older fans get excited to see them after a lengthy break. But provided that the story-telling is good, that there are other exciting monsters on display, I don't think there are many who are disappointed not to see the Daleks constantly. I don't mind seeing them yearly; if there's a good hook to the story, a new perspective to keep them interesting (such as the Asylum/Parliament, or the Dalek that "turned good"), then by all means give us Daleks. But I do feel that it's probably not as crucial as Moffat seems to consider it. With exciting, engaging and clever story-telling, I don't think it matters to a lot of fans - young and old - whether the Daleks feature weekly, yearly or when Jupiter aligns with Mars. It's always nice to see them, but I don't think anyone would lose interest in the show where they to sink into the background for longer periods - if anything, it'd ramp up the excitement for when they do exterminate their way back into the limelight. TL;DR - Daleks are awesome, but they're not an essential part of every series.
1 week ago on Moffat: Daleks Are Not A Contractual Obligation
I do find it odd that you bother to include Derek Jacobi, MWTV. For the small amount of time he was on screen as the character, he did have a lot of presence and had he been given chance, I'm sure he'd have gone on to be an extraordinary Master - but he was only a fleeting, transitional incarnation that we caught the final moments of. We know nothing of him, we never really saw him in action bar for electrocuting Chantho, he's an enigma - we'll never know. I'd be more interested to see how things would have gone if only offered the two choices; Simm and Gomez. That aside, I'm voting for Michelle Gomez. I absolutely loved John Simm's take on The Master back in the day, the shift from evil to simply insane really livened up what had been a stale character archetype (in this modern day and age, I expect more nuance from drama than simply infallible hero vs. snide villain). If you'd have told me Missy was actually to be The Master before Dark Water, I'd have been certain there's no way she'd be able to top Simm's take. But two episodes later and I've changed my mind entirely. What I love about Missy, weirdly, is that she's a compromise - she combines the best of Simm's madman act with the more cerebral, calculating Master of old. She's two-in-one; one part crazy and one part cunning. She's pulling the character slightly back toward the more traditional Masters but still managing to feel like a logical continuation of the direction established for the character under Davies and Simm. I really don't know how much more I could have hoped for out of a re-cast Master. I'm even warming more to the ending of Death in Heaven the more I think about it; I like how the "old friend" dynamic was played up, and how there was no real, evil 'conquer the universe' plan behind her actions; it was more of a deranged appeal to an old friend from a twisted mind that can't decide whether she loves or loathes him and wants to pull him over to the dark side. Didn't like the idea at first, but it very clearly defines the dynamic between Twelve and Missy going forward and takes them into slightly newer territory, which can only be a good thing. All in all, although I'll never forget Simm's brilliance in the role, there's only one Master (or Mistress) that comes to mind now: Michelle Gomez.
1 week, 1 day ago on Face-Off: New Who Masters
I want something akin to the Nine/Rose/Jack dynamic back. Conventional, contemporary human companion plus eccentric, far-future companion, no explicit romance (besides a bit of flirting) between them; they were just three mates, who all met through their travels and traversed time and space together. I thought that was wonderful, not least because their personalities all meshed well despite being wildly different. Sadly they eked less than half a series from that grouping, but at least that means it's not over-done compared to companion romances. They could very easily give us our usual contemporary female companion, to keep tradition intact, whilst going on to introduce a secondary companion who's either from a vastly different time period or another species to freshen things up. I definitely think it's a direction they should consider.
1 week, 2 days ago on Moffat Mulls Future Companion Not Being Another Earth Girl
I know very little about Being Human, so I can't really judge him as a showrunner, but as a recurring writer in Doctor Who I've found him fairly hit-and-miss, and as yet I don't think he's had any real stand-out episodes (I'm talking the real gems, the way Moffat really announced himself - after what was already a good run of episodes - with Blink). I didn't much rate Vampires of Venice or A Town Called Mercy, and School Reunion/The God Complex were only 8/10 material to me. He probably could do a good job if given the responsibility, but so far he's done nothing to make me think "that's the right man for the job".
1 week, 3 days ago on Moffat on Series 8 Ratings: There is no drop-off
I personally feel that about five years is a good length of time, and then a new showrunner - if there's a worthy candidate for that role - could help to keep things fresh over a long period. I'm a fan of both Russell T. Davies and Steven Moffat, don't get me wrong; there are things I dislike about both men's writing, but equally they're eclipsed by the ways in which I admire both of their styles. But I can't imagine watching Russell's take on Doctor Who for 10-15 years, or Steven's take for 10-15 years. I'm not calling for a mandatory re-election every 5 years, but I feel that after that length of time there's only so much longer you can keep going before the product starts to feel a little stale (I'm not saying we've hit that point yet, but I'm certain that we would). I'm not saying we should kick the lead writer out every 5 years and re-elect, but I think it's in everyone's best interests - the writer's, the show's and the fans' - if the man in charge doesn't try to hold the limelight for too long. Doctor Who is too large of a juggernaut, with too rich, storied and varied history and heritage, for one man to form an undue monopoly over - would Doctor Who even be here today if Hartnell had played the role for a decade, or would they have just have cancelled it with his departure?
I could well be completely off the mark here, but aren't a lot of people neglecting to consider that it's possible - just possible - that Clara is already pregnant?
1 week, 4 days ago on Death in Heaven Review (Part 2): Questions, Questions
Personally, I couldn't really imagine Simm acting alongside Capaldi, nor could I imagine Gomez playing off against Tennant. They're both perfect for the respective Doctor they were paired with.
1 week, 5 days ago on Your Verdict on Dark Water & Episode Ranking
It was a three-year contract with the option to extend it by up to two additional years. Evidently, Smith decided against taking on the additional years. Understandable, really. He's a great young actor with lofty Hollywood ambitions.
1 week, 6 days ago on Rate & Discuss Death in Heaven
Definitely a hit. Although the material he's had to work with has been a mixed bag, Capaldi always manages to churn out a stellar performance and seems able to redeem any story through the nuances of his acting. He's given us a portrayal of an incarnation that's both deeply unique, and yet still heavily informed by the characteristics of his predecessors. On the downside, he doesn't always speak clearly and loudly enough (I find myself skipping back through an episode to work out he'd said sometimes, which was never a problem in previous series), which is a minor irritation, and there are the odd moments where his delivery seems a tad unusual. But all of that is eclipsed by the variety he displays and the passion he clearly puts into the role. This Doctor's characterisation has been a bit odd at times - the aggressively anti-military tone, for example - but those issues are beyond Capaldi's control. Considering the material he's been working with and that it's his first series in the role (let's face it, Tennant and Smith weren't at their absolute peak in their first series, so one will assume Capaldi will improve in time too), it's definitely a hit. He's already amongst my favourite incarnations.
1 week, 6 days ago on Poll: Capaldi’s Doctor – Hit or Miss?
I had assumed that, like the rest of the Cybermen, the Brigadier took off at the end with the intention of destroying himself high up in the atmosphere - I can't imagine the Brig willingly living as a Cyberman. As for the other companions, we simply can't know. I don't suppose there was anything left of Adric after the crash (not to mention it was in prehistoric times) so I'd rule him out. But Sarah-Jane Smith, Amy & Rory Pond etc quite possibly did rise as Cybermen. I'd actually half-expected some sort of grim reference to that, but I'm sort of happy it was left untouched.
That'd be an interesting twist, but then one would have to wonder why they bother to harvest human bodies and consciousnesses at all. There were billions of Time Lords on Gallifrey when it disappeared, certainly no shortage to fill those Cybersuits. I'm also dubious of any story that sees the Master willingly working to help/save his people. As if he wasn't already a despised renegade for most of his life, the last time we saw him he'd just discovered Rassilon and the Council had manipulated him in a way that amounted to torture since his childhood. It's a brilliant thought, I just don't see it going that way (sadly).
2 weeks ago on 10 Anticipated Death in Heaven Moments
It's definitely much deeper and more grating, but it's still what I'd call "overly robotic". Still, I'm glad these new Cybermen come with new voices.
I keep forgetting Nick Frost is a part of the Christmas Special - even if the episode itself isn't spectacular, his performance will undoubtedly be a highlight. Interesting premise though, the whole "what is real and what is not" thing; sounds a little like Amy's Choice (it'll probably be nothing like it, but that's the initial impression I get). I wonder if there's going to be a basis in a pre-existing Christmas yarn this year, as has been the way with Moffat's prior Christmas episodes.
2 weeks, 1 day ago on 2014 Christmas Special Plot Hints
I always assumed it was cosmic coincidence, but that's a good question. I don't suppose we'll ever know.
2 weeks, 2 days ago on Face-Off: Utopia vs Dark Water
I think people are going to vividly remember the time the Master returned as a woman for quite some time. It might not quite emulate Utopia's lasting reverence, but it certainly won't be forgotten.
Dark Water for me, but it's a close call. Utopia, whilst decent in its own right, felt largely like an extended set-up for the finale. It was a prologue, and felt as such. Dark Water was a better overall episode. That said, Utopia did provide the slightly more heart-stopping cliffhanger and had a much more tense and exciting reveal. The main reason I can't give it my vote, however, is that we saw so little of both incarnations of the Master to feature in that episode. I felt slightly robbed of Derek Jacobi's incarnation, and it didn't have time to let much of Simm's Master come across. That was obviously intentional, given that it preceded a two-parter that focused on Simm's incarnation, but the fact remains that it just didn't deliver much of either Master. Dark Water, whilst we didn't know her identity until the end, gave us more than a good glimpse of Gomez' incarnation. Utopia was perfect in its role of teasing and setting up the finale, but if we're voting simply between Utopia and Dark Water, as opposed to Utopia/LotTL/TSoD vs. Dark Water/Death in Heaven, I have to give it to Dark Water
2 weeks, 3 days ago on Death in Heaven Advance Review
It doesn't have to be anybody's "fault". It's not a murder plot. Danny looked quite absent-minded (as you would be when dealing with a phone call like that; your attention wouldn't be on your immediate environment) as he was walking towards the road, the woman who picked up his phone said the car came "out of nowhere", implying nobody saw it coming - it's simply a horrible accident, the kind that sadly happen every day around the world.
I think that element has already come into play. I think a part of the extent to Clara's grief (loss can make us do some irrational things, but her betrayal of The Doctor was miles out of character) was that not only did Danny die, but he died before she ever had the chance to be honest and truthful with him - it was something that she'd been dealing with for a long time and had finally mustered the nerve to get off her chest, and then it was snatched away with him. It's kind of like making peace, in a sense - in Clara's eyes, he died being lied to. She can never take back or apologise for those lies now. In my interpretation of the episode (opinions will obviously differ), it was that complete denial of closure - closure that was within reach - that drove her as far as she went and left her feeling so cold and conflicted. It wasn't just grief for a lost loved one; it was that grief amplified by her own sense of guilt.
Deep Breath didn't offer any explanations, it only raised questions on that front - and dedicated a pretty hefty scene to doing so. I don't see why they'd bother to do that if they had no pay-off in mind. Why draw attention to the fact that your new lead actor has appeared before if you've not got a way to explain it? Surely you'd just ignore the issue and let the suspension of disbelief do its thing. Given that it wasn't a theme that recurred throughout the series, I'm guessing it's being held over for next year, much the same that the "Silence Will Fall" mutterings in Series Five weren't explained or elaborated upon until Series 6. I suppose it's not impossible that there's a missing scene in the advance copies that returns to this question, but I've got a feeling that if something has been held back, it won't be related to Capaldi's face. Not yet. But I'd put money on it being something that resurfaces, and is addressed, further down the line. Moffat plays the long game.
Great question actually, I'd quite like to hear D-, sorry, MWTV's take on it. Whilst I do agree somewhat that the whole snogging, "sexy" aspect, tired as it is by now, has been particularly irksome when applied to the Master, I do at least find it a fascinating dynamic that Capaldi's incarnation, unlike his last two (Ten more so than Eleven, admittedly), is conversely very asexual; he doesn't even discern when Clara puts effort into looking nice, and he's no longer a very tactile person.
I'm not sure if I'm misinterpreting what you're trying to say, but if I'm reading you correctly, I guess it would be "why do they do X", or "why does Missy/the Master do X". I know the former sounds misleadingly plural.
Beyond The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang (what's more "epic" than the entire Universe dying?), I'd disagree. TWoRS and TNotD were very Doctor-centric; although a Universe without the Doctor would be a horrible thing, the stakes were simply about one man. RTD much preferred placing billions of people in grave danger rather than just the titular character. I'd hazard a guess that that's what MWTV is suggesting when they say "epic".
I still haven't recovered from the non-DW Red Wedding. Are you trying to explode my heart here?
I knew it - I knew we'd get a Blake's 7 style ending!
It's definitely the simplest and least confusing solution, but inevitably people are still going to use "he" and "she" simply out of reflex. I think we just need to accept that it's not a huge deal - whether you call them Missy or the Master, he or she, it's still obvious who you're referring to. Look past the gender and they're still the exact same character.
There's still a lot of debate and confusion about the appropriate pronouns and titles to use. Just read the "A Study of Regeneration: Lord or Lady?" article from the other day to see that nuance discussed to the very death. We're used to calling her The Master, because she's gone by that name for 50 years, but she's obviously now Missy. I think the reasoning behind DWTV's use of the two different titles is down to context. The last time we saw Missy/The Master, when he was being dragged back into the Time War, he was male. Thus "how did the Master escape..." seems appropriate, given that at the time, we had no reason to suspect he was, or was going to become, anything other than male. But when referring to more recent events, which we know took place during The Master's female lifespan, it's more appropriate to refer to her by her current gender and title - hence Missy.
I've got that on a T-Shirt.
I don't think we were ever intended to get a genuine answer to that - leaving us to speculate and to never know for sure gives it a much more lasting impact than to either paint The Doctor as definitively innocent or a cold-blooded killer. I'm usually the first to get annoyed when we don't get answers for something, but this was one of those instances where it's so well-served by the ambiguity that to give us an answer would simply spoil it.
You were expecting a finale without any?
A teleport (in the traditional sense) relocates physical objects. However, the Nethersphere is a hard-drive, a computer: the denizens within, and the environment they inhabit, is almost certainly just data. It's all a simulation, kind of like River Song within the Library's data banks. So a teleport, as such, wouldn't be able to relocate Chang into the Nethersphere. It's possible the device, in some way, strips the consciousness away from someone as they die though - and so his physical body did indeed die, but his mind has still been conserved and uploaded. It's interesting to consider.
2 weeks, 4 days ago on What Further Secrets do Missy & Seb Hide?
Possible, perhaps. But if the Nethersphere is indeed what we've been told it is - a Gallifreyan hard-drive - I don't think it's hugely likely. For the Nethersphere to contain the Earth, for starters they'd need to digitise the entirety of the planet and all of its inhabitants (unless the Earth stays physical, but if that's the case, it'd require that the Nethersphere be hollow, expand enormously in size and would also still limit interactions between the real, physical world and the data contained within the sphere - that city seemingly isn't 'real', it's just a simulation). It could still happen, but it doesn't seem a very obvious direction to take from here IMO.
2 weeks, 4 days ago on Death in Heaven TV Trailer Breakdown
Forgot to add that we probably shouldn't rule out the idea that the Nethersphere is also The Master's TARDIS (and thus definitely can be reshaped to take any internal appearance). But the mumbo-jumbo about 'stasis slice' or whatever else perhaps suggests this isn't the case.
Both of those shots are of the sky, and from what we've seen in Dark Water, the Nethersphere doesn't seem to have one - the entire internal surface of the sphere is a city. Above you is the city, below you is the city, the city is everywhere - there's no sky or atmosphere to be seen. So I'd hazard a guess that both of those shots are from the real world, rather than the Promised Land. Although, that being said, the first time we see the Nethersphere (the garden, in Deep Breath), it did have a sky - so perhaps, the Nethersphere being a computer, the internal 'world' or landscape can be modified at will. I suppose we'll find out later in the week.
I didn't find Seb to embody those traits much at all; he was morbidly cheery in his emotional detachment (which is a tick in the right box), but otherwise he seemed more of a darkly-comic bureaucrat than a master schemer. Of course, you can make the case that he'll have a drastic personality shift in the next episode - which he well might - but based on what we've seen, I don't think he's illustrated a persona that could both last and be taken seriously as The Master. Nor do I particularly want to see him adopt a more serious persona, as I think he's perfect as he is and is better suited to roles where his comic acting can shine through more (Seb, as the apparent henchman, is perfect for this - I wouldn't want the Master to be played with such levity, however). Michelle Gomez's breed of wackiness seemed rooted into Simm-esque insanity and was a little spine-chilling, where Addison's seemed to be born from a worker's exasperation and growing indifference at what's evidently an extremely sensitive and life-changing job. It seemed played more for humour. That's just my interpretation of it, and I could still be proven completely wrong about everything. But that's why I'm banking on Missy being the genuine article.
2 weeks, 5 days ago on What Further Secrets do Missy & Seb Hide?
I've read a lot of people proposing that Seb could be the real Master and that Missy be either a cover, an aspect or even The Rani, but I'm deeply dreading that possibility. Don't get me wrong, I'm a huge fan of Chris Addison and Seb has been a terrific character (by far one of my favourite guest roles of recent years) so far, but he'd need an awfully big character shift to feel anything like The Master. Meanwhile, you've got Missy, who really is the perfect fit - she's got the cunning, manipulative and cold-hearted Classic Master persona down to an art, whilst still layering in the exuberance and craziness of Simm's more recent portrayal. Although I wasn't expecting him/her to return as a woman (fortunately I'm in the camp that found it a pleasant surprise rather than a total outrage), this current portrayal by Michelle Gomez is everything I'd hoped and expected the next Master to be - I'll be devastated if they snatch it away from us in the name of misdirection. I'm still banking on that being too much of a bait-and-switch even for Steven Moffat (famous last words, I know), because what they've got so far is perfect. Missy makes the ideal Master, and Seb - whomever he may turn out to be - is perfect at playing the character he's already portrayed. We don't need him to go evolving into Roger Delgado.
Do elaborate? I can't think what you might be referring to.
2 weeks, 6 days ago on Poll: The Missy Reveal
I have wondered this myself. It's evident that the Cybermen no longer need organic bodies within them (I still think that was a terrible move, but I suppose it's time to accept it) based on what we saw in their Pete's World origins story. Then in The Pandorica Opens, we saw a Cyberman with its internal body long since wasted away (to the same point of decay as the Dark Water Cybermen) on the hunt for a new host, implying that a long-deceased body was of little use to it anymore. Then we get the revelation that the body and mind can be separated upon physical death, thus the consciousness and intelligence needed by the suit can be gained without needing the physical form. So it does seem rather odd, all things considered, that they're putting the bodies of long-deceased humans into the Cybermen suits - it would seem that it serves no real purpose. That said, it's creepy as hell to think about and gave us some impressive visuals, so for the sake of the story I'll forgive the break in logic. It'd be nice if we get some sort of explanation for it in the next episode though, because it does seem to contradict the Cybermen's prior outings somewhat.
2 weeks, 6 days ago on Rate & Discuss Dark Water
Exactly. That's why I've put a fiver on The Rani regenerating into a goat.
The Nethersphere is just a hard-drive collecting the souls of recently-deceased humans on 21st Century Earth. River died in the far, far future on a distant planet. It's not an actual 'heaven', on some other plane of existence - they're just data in a particular computer, grounded at one point in time and space.
3 weeks ago on Rate & Discuss Dark Water