Blog Writer (PopGap), recent college grad, always looking for interesting things to write about.
@Typo42 "Magic Carrots" @SirTrey Well, I'd say it matters as much as any collective rankings on a television show matter...big picture, not much, but for fans of the show, quite a bit, especially after weeks of discussion and multiple articles written on the subject. When we're getting statistical breakdowns of the votes, it doesn't seem too crazy to take note of certain voting trends, in this case the trend being a general use of only the top half of the scale.
Two points, also...one, I'm not really sure how much of a "disproportionate effect" low voters would have, any more than high voters would have, when there are hundreds if not thousands of votes per episode. Maybe a loss of a hundredth of a point here or there, but a 10 or two - and clearly there were many of those - would override that. And I'd argue that a voter whose entire range is within 7-10 has far more of an effect than an outlier voter who uses the entire range.
And secondly, I was never trying to be "smarter" than everyone, I wouldn't exactly keep watching the show and having long, seemingly fruitful conversations with people on here if I thought the fans were all idiots and the show was terrible. I (and I can't speak for anyone else here) just have a bit of trouble wrapping my head around that concept of something both being "disliked" and "above average" at the same time, as those concepts seem to be literal/logical opposites.
That's not even to say that I "expected" the average to come out at exactly 5, mine is above that and I was generally one of the "less generous" voters. But there seems to be some kind of visceral reaction to low ratings on even one of a list of 117 episodes, not an insignificant number.
To use another example, I'm not sure if you play video games, but if you do you're possibly aware of the common rating controversies in reviewers. A reviewer will give a big, popular game a rating somewhere between 6-8 and receive angry comments and freaked out letters from people thinking that means the rating was bad when, as very clearly stated on most 1-10 scales, 7/10 is not bad. That's multiplied exponentially with lower scores, so to balance that out it seems that people will cap the lower end of the scale but not the higher end.
It's not that I have some kind of protest-filled "problem" with that...hell, I thought ":P" was a pretty universally understood signal of "this is in jest", but it's still, to me, a bit of dissonance. And, to use that same metaphor, if gold was that common then the smaller pieces would automatically become less valuable. That's my entire point...even if you're comparing "gold" across the board, if one piece of gold is a tenth as valuable then on a scale it would measure as such. Stating that bad Doctor Who is still better than a lot of television otherwise shouldn't have to preclude people from rating it against itself.
1 day, 9 hours ago on All 117 Episodes of the Revival Ranked By You
Supermoff, thanks for some excellent and very intriguing stats! Interested to see part two and amused to come out mostly in agreement, if maybe somewhat more muted, with the group as a whole.
And well if this is the format for today...
Slightly Flawed but Mostly Excellent
1 day, 10 hours ago on Rank the Revival: A Numbery-Wumbery Breakdown (Part 1)
Liking for the reference haha Got all of those episodes a significant distance below Time, though, so I'm with everyone else there.
3 days, 5 hours ago on All 117 Episodes of the Revival Ranked By You
Two not really surprising quirks. The LOWEST finale is Wedding of River Song at 7.21, and exactly 8 episodes were rated below 6, which means 109 episodes are apparently "above average". Really using the whole scale here people :P
@Avor The funny thing is, when I first started watching the show on Netflix, it wasn't until Aliens of London/World War Three that I was completely entertained and not thinking, "Ok, this is cool in a few ways but I hope it gets better."
4 days, 11 hours ago on The Bottom 10 TV Stories of the Decade
@the Doctor's Euph is too busy to write reviews @gunslinger19 Welcome to the voting here, where exactly two episodes are collectively ranked at a score below average...
@Timhogan I just find the episode really, really unmemorable, which for a show like this is worse than just being bad IMO...I'm not kidding, I watched the episode yesterday and I can't even remember the alien group's name.
^And to head off the next question, I usually have a very good memory :P
@TheNightmareChild @SirTrey @TardisBoy! Me? Hung up on small details? Never :P
I'd probably be less hung up on it if "a prophecy about someone dying who doesn't actually die" didn't end up becoming a trope for the next couple of seasons...
4 days, 12 hours ago on The Bottom 10 TV Stories of the Decade
@TardisBoy! This is the story of how Edoe was legally declared dead but actually just melodramatically fell into a parallel universe. This is also the story of how we couldn't fit that entire sentence into a promo.
@TardisBoy! So Edoe won't die at all then? Perfect!
@TheNightmareChild @SirTrey *blows party streamer* :D
It really is a touching, beautifully scored, life-affirming episode. I can understand people "disliking" it but it was the second-lowest episode of the entire revived series in the most recent Doctor Who Magazine poll and I just can't wrap my head around that DO YOU PEOPLE HAVE NO SOULS
@TardisBoy! You joined in on the hug, so I'll resist the urge to use air quotes here :P
@TheNightmareChild @SirTrey Well Rings is in my top ten and Daughter was, chronologically, the first 10 I gave to a non-Moffat episode :P So either would've been rough.
As for these, if I remove the finales - which I fully realize have many very ardent defenders - these are all in my bottom 15 or so except Love and Monsters, which is close. The only really low episode I have that isn't just in that general range but near the bottom is New Earth...the rest make sense for me.
@TheNightmareChild @SirTrey I know you have ;)
Both of us were worried one of our top ten could end up in the bottom ten...so cheers!
I can't tell you how happy I am that The Rings of Akhaten and The Doctor's Daughter aren't on here.
*Hugs my poor, neglected babies*
@TardisBoy! AND IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII
^Somewhere in the world, that note is always being held.
@YaelMoise I mean, at least that story tried something really interesting.
It failed miserably, but at least it tried! And hey, Andrew Garfield is even in it.
@MetamorphmagusWho The short version for me, on Lazarus:
1. Martha's family just seemed like dramatic tools instead of interesting characters.
2. For me, the monster seemed really ridiculous, even more so the explanation and resolution.
3. I get it, Ten ignores Martha all the time, stop beating the damn dead horse.
Just my two cents. I can see why those things would matter less for others, though, it's not one of the ones that really baffles me when people say they like it.
4 days, 13 hours ago on The Bottom 10 TV Stories of the Decade
@TheOncomingHurricane @Edoe @Oodkind I was so happy to not hear the words "Emergency Temporal Shift" again I almost gave the episode an extra point just for that alone...
All of these save Love and Monsters and the first half of the Dalek two-parter are rated 4 or below, so this is well within my bottom range...and those two are both 5s, with the highest, L&M, coming in at 85th place.
I already announced my bottom two yesterday :P But as for the rest:
108. The Long Game 4/10 - Entirely unmemorable, which is a crime for an episode with Simon Pegg.
109. The Lazarus Experiment 4/10 - Ridiculous monster and Martha's family as dramatic tools.
110. The Idiot's Lantern 4/10 - Just left me cold.
111. Last of the Time Lords 4/10 - Sorry Nightmare Child...but hey, it was a 3 before your essay!
112. Journey's End 3/10 - Ridiculous villain plot, Metacrisis and unfairly brutal to Donna.
113. New Earth 3/10 - The only bad series opener in the entire show.
114. Evolution of the Daleks 3/10 - Emergency temporal shift me away from this episode.
115. The End of Time Part Two 2/10 - The less said here, the better.
116. Fear Her 2/10 - At least you can mock this one.
117. Night Terrors 1/10 - Chin up Gatiss, Robot of Sherwood is only two series away!
@Oodkind It's because for quite a few voters the range was basically 7-10, or maybe 5 or 6-10...hence their worst episodes, by this scale, still coming out as average.
@HeyProfessor is waiting for Simms to come back @SirTrey I didn't even think the episode was that bad, there are other episodes far more frustrating...but it's just so damn nondescript, and in such a vibrant, unique show that's arguably a far worse crime.
6 days, 11 hours ago on Revival Face-Off: The Grand Final
@Typo42 "Magic Carrots" @SirTrey "poor production values, terrible 80s child tv acting and the clunky feel good reality fail...but, I like it"
To paraphrase Clara in Day of the Doctor..."I'm sure that sounded better in his head." :P And yes, it is very easy to mock those things hahaha
The interesting thing is, Flatline creeped the hell out of me - it was very amusing when I saw the AV Club's review described the episode as "Oh, so THIS is what a good version of “Fear Her” would look like..."
So the concept is very scary to me, I just didn't like the execution very much. And in my initial rankings, I almost gave the episode a 1 but jumped it up to a 2 just because it was a replacement episode and that can't be easy. But, like I said, I still don't know why you'd choose to use the Olympics and 100,000 people disappearing as items in your low-budget episode. Midnight was probably cheaper and that was brilliant because it was intentionally very small scale.
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer I have The Doctor's Daughter exactly one spot below Blink...but I've come to terms with being weird about that one :P
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey Well they had to pay David Tennant twice, I'm sure that cost a lot extra :P
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey I would've forgiven like 30% more of that episode hahaha
It would've been a fitting show of defiance from RTD to have Kel with the Shadow Proclamation, Elton fighting for the Doctor instead of Harriet (one of the backup plans if Penelope Wilton was busy) and Jenny instead of the Metacrisis.
"Screw it, I'm leaving, what are they gonna do, fire me? You want people back? I'm bringing back EVERYONE."
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey Plot twist: the CAAAANCIL was actually the Shadow Proclamation. Kel only says they're just the local CAAAAANCIL for security purposes.
6 days, 12 hours ago on Revival Face-Off: The Grand Final
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey "And why are you the boss?"
"BECAUSE I HAVE A CAAAAANCIL AXE!"
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey Kel the CAAAAAAAAAANCIL Man?
That scene when they start grilling Kel and every other character starts yelling at each other is like a mini, incompetent Midnight :P
Oh, and Papua New Guinea didn't do squat in the Olympic shot put either :P
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey YAY *Jumps up and down like Rose at the end of Fear Her*
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey It's probably the same kind of thing that I've mentioned with me in other episodes, when I get on a nitpicky roll it's very hard to pull me out of it. The dad was a bit menacing before they opened the closet but by the time he was coming down the stairs it just seemed like RTD holding a red sheet in front of a light and growling like he needed a throat lozenge.
And that's fair with the Cybermen not necessarily being the surprise, though they're definitely revealed in Army of Ghosts like we're not supposed to know they're coming.
The direction...I can't say I noticed it, which is actually sometimes a good sign. I don't remember any particularly special shots but it's framed well enough and never distracting. Granted, that just means you focus more on the actual episode and...yeah.
In many ways, this mirrors an actual election...the candidates many actually most want to see win are too _______ for the general populace, so the more moderate, generally brilliant ones that everyone may not wildly love but just about everyone at least really likes make it this far. Compromise candidate episodes, if you will.
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey As I was typing that, I d did think "I'm not sure if this is better or worse" XD
*The Nightmare Child, the DW entity, not The Nightmare Child, DWTV user :P
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey Ohhhhh whoops I'm sorry about that, I was thinking of the Nightmare Child in the show when I wrote that :P Temporarily forgot there was an actual user who might feel bad about that haha
@TheNightmareChild: Clown Slayer @SirTrey I had to fit in at least one last hurrah for the guy who was so commonly the Least Generous voter :P And we'll never actually have a face-off like this because it'll just cause a lot of yelling, despite the snark that might come out of it.
And hey, in Fear Her's defense...it wins this face-off haha
Oh right, I almost forgot, the actual final. Come on now, that one’s easy…neither episode is my absolute favorite but The Day of the Doctor wins in a walk over Blink.
117 episodes, and we’re finally home. The long way ‘round.
Part 2: Night Terrors and The "Winner" of this and the Actual Face-Off
So, on the other hand: Night Terrors, the episode I’ve probably seen three times without
any memory of it whatsoever. And you
know what? Things aren’t much more
memorable now, mere minutes after I’ve finished watching it. With that said, the episode does get one
genuinely scary moment – one more than Fear
Her as the landlord is transformed into a doll.
rest of the episode passes by as an absolutely average blur. Amy and Rory wander around in dark hallways
for twenty minutes while [insert creepy kid sound effects here] chase them,
many of the episode’s best moments are handled better (or, at least, more interestingly)
in other episodes, and the altogether-too-convenient ending passes by in a
that said…I initially gave Night Terrors
a 1 because I completely couldn’t remember it.
Now that I do…I just don’t care, doubly so considering it’s surrounded
by considerably better and more
interesting episodes. Then again, Fear Her is much more aggressively
stupid but at least also more memorable, as are a few other episodes that have
made me angrier but also earned higher scores.
the end? I can at least mock Fear Her. Night
Terrors, though…I just want to skip it.
Which makes the challenger my new winner.
‘EM WHAT THEY’VE WON!!!
Fear Her today earns its place as
SirTrey’s 116th favorite episode since the revival; ooh, sorry Night Terrors, you’ll get the DWTV home
board game and 117th place.
Part 1: Fear Her
First off, the traditional favorite, Fear Her. The episode actually begins interestingly enough, with a panicked old woman, a disappearing kid and a sleepy village. Things can’t go that downhill from here, right? There’s even a cute gag with the TARDIS materializing in the direction and opening against a wall.
Alas, that’s about as amusing as things got from here on out. First of all, I find it to be absolutely inexplicable that in an episode the writers knew going in would be their cheap fill-in episode, they decided to use the Olympic Games – an event of insanely large and expensive scale – as the framing device. It makes the entire already-cheap-seeming episode come off even worse. And, to be clear, I don’t mind this show having occasionally dodgy special effects – the only other time I’ve ever really “complained” was Rose, and that’s as much because it was the first episode as much as the effects were…less than ideal.
The trouble with using a child actor as the center (or at least as a very important part) of your episode is it centers around their skill. Sometimes, it works…The Eleventh Hour, The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang, The Rings of Akhaten, The Caretaker/Kill the Moon (whatever you think of the episodes, Courtney wasn’t the weak spot). But when it doesn’t work, it can be agonizing, and notably both of these bottom two episodes deal with relatively uncharismatic children.
Chloe Webber a) comes across as a child pretending to be possessed, not as one actually possessed and her mother is both entirely unconvincing – what kind of parent lets their kid talk to them that way – and forgettable. The “monsters “ are regularly more amusing than scary – a scribble, seriously? – and I half expected Chloe’s dad to be played by a growling man with a red sheet over his head. He certainly sounded like it.
And, again, to circle back around to the Olympics – that entire subplot comes off as hackneyed and ill-advised. Nearly 100,000 people vanish and the torch relay still goes on like nothing happened…excuse me? What, did they think that was all part of the show? And then some random dude just picks up the torch and runs straight on into the stadium? Maybe this is just my post-9/11 American paranoia talking, but that part seems even more unrealistic than most of the science-fiction in the show. Gold medal in idiot ball plotting.
Even the closing lines and next-episode preview are terrible…Rose (admittedly the only good thing about this episode, and that’s saying something) and the Doctor stop and look at the sky, saying “something’s coming”. Look, up in the sky…it’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s…HEAVY-HANDED FORESHADOWING!!!!!
And the Army of Ghosts preview a) immediately invalidates Rose’ confident “we’ll be together forever” line and b) ruins any hope of surprising viewers with the Cybermen’s presence. There’s also that this is very much not “the last story I’ll ever tell” for Ms. Tyler, but we don’t find out that’s also misleading for another two weeks. The episode is for all intents and purposes entirely forgettable filler.
Revival Faceplant-Off: The Delusions of Grandeur Final
Fear Her vs. Night Terrors
Well, here we are everyone, the moment we’ve all
been waiting for. Weeks of voting and
117 episodes, and we’re finally down to these two. These shining beacons, these amazing stories, these...
wait, hold on, wrong script. Ah, here it is
I’m also determining which episode is last
in my countdown, and that race is also down to its final two. These dim bulbs, these unmemorable moments,
these lackluster efforts…the race to the bottom kicks into its final gear with
its two “strongest” contenders, and so I gritted my teeth, re-watched both of
them, and came out a little less sane but a lot more sure of the bottom of my
this corner, the reigning champion!
Airing in Series 2 on June 24th 2006, starring the most
annoying kid since the Nightmare Child and filmed on a budget so low the
actors were probably paid in Trident Layers…Fear
And in the other corner, the
unexpected challenger! Airing in Series
6 on September 3rd 2011, written by Mark “Ninth time’s the charm”
Gatiss and featuring dolls less scary than a visit to the in-laws…Night Terrors!!!!!!!!
Boy was this one a
doozy. Let’s get to the, *ahem*…lowlights:
Also, while there are many other episodes I like better - Blink comes in at #15 on my rankings - there may not be an episode ending I like better than that one. The "Don't Blink" montage, with its smash cuts to statues and Tennant's stark, pointed narration, elicited gasps and freaked out looks.
That ending also caused me tell one of the friends who introduced me to the show that there was a good chance future drunk SirTrey would injure himself trying to run from a statue :P So the episode is certainly...effective lol
1 week ago on Revival Face-Off: Semi-Final #2
Well, ladies and gentlemen, it appears that we've only been prolonging the inevitable...
With that said, I'm still voting for Blink in face-off 1, as while it's a bit overrated, that's overrated in a "not the best episode ever" sense, not overrated in a "doesn't deserve a 10" sense. Also, neither Human Nature nor Family of Blood got 10s from me - some personal quibbles, and they didn't hold up as well to a re-viewing, while Blink, somewhat surprisingly, did.
And, well, I made my bed yesterday with regards to The Eleventh Hour, time to lie in it :P My reasoning...
The episodes are directly next door to each other in the rankings, #3 and #4 (with the recently-ousted Listen at #5), meaning it's a very fluid ranking that I've gone back and forth on multiple times.
To use another comparison, I've been a James Bond fanatic for pretty much my entire life and a film critic/writer for the last few years who releases an annual top ten films list, and Skyfall was the first time I felt like I could legitimately make a case for a Bond film at #1. As 2012 went by, there were ultimately two films that I had "tied" with Skyfall, and I realized eventually that due to my massive pro-Bond bias, if I could acknowledge those two were tied, it meant they deserved to be ranked higher, as they didn't have the benefit of years upon years of fandom.
The 50th has nostalgia and fandom benefits in spades...not to say it's undeserving of high praise - again, #4 - but the episodes I have above it are basically tied, but without the massive pomp and circumstance of the anniversary, which actually puts them slightly above.
@Gustaff @TheNightmareChild GIVE IT TO ME NOW
@Gustaff The entire episode is strung along by a bit of excessiveness, certainly...
Hide the TARDIS? Nahhhhh, let's go through a ridiculously convoluted chameleon arch scheme so people know what that watch is by the finale.
Let them die out or trap the family somewhere? Nahhh, that's too easy, gotta pull the entire vengeful god routine.
Honestly, the second one irritated me more than the first though neither were "episode breakers", and Tennant's performance almost makes up for all of this.
@Gustaff @Malohkeh will sell soul for Big Finish CDs At least with Angels there was a light attempt at lampshading it away with the lines about fragile timelines and paradoxes. Not much, but it's there haha
@goodnightraggedyman @supermoff @SirTrey is Backing The Eleventh Hour That made me re-read it in his voice with I Am the Doctor playing in the background and caused quite the smile :D
1 week, 1 day ago on Revival Face-Off: Semi-Final #1
@Mr Meglos @SirTrey is Backing The Eleventh Hour I'll admit that it's not easy for me to separate my largely-negative feeling about The End of Time from my analysis of his Tennant's acting...but I'd probably still have his finale right behind those three episodes you mentioned. I like him in Midnight and Waters of Mars a bit better only because they're smaller, logical twists on the character, but they are so very effective, and in Human Nature/Family of Blood he's literally playing a different character but infusing him with enough of the Doctor that it still works, it's an amazing performance.
End of Time certainly has the most acting out of any of those but for me I'll take the difference in Family of Blood or the nuances in the other two over the "peak Ten" we see in End of Time almost by default since that was the last time we'd see him and they had to showcase the character's range.
@Malohkeh will sell soul for Big Finish CDs @supermoff @SirTrey is Backing The Eleventh Hour It's funny, isn't it? If I'm Supermoff, then these comments must be Supermoff's too. So what happens if I reply to myself or something?
@MartianWaters @supermoff @SirTrey is Backing The Eleventh Hour EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEPIC COMMENT BATTLES OF DWTVVVVVVVV