Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Doctor Who - "Rose"

I figured I'd try a few non-comics posts. No big spoilers in here, since I know this hasn't shown everywhere yet.

I was a DOCTOR WHO fan for about five years, from age 8 to 13, watching and enjoying most of the Pertwee and Tom Baker stuff I saw (and reading a bunch of the novelizations) before losing interest soon enough when the Davison stuff started. Never got too interested in anything since, and didn't even re-watch the earlier stuff whenever it was available (although I did for a long time have a cardboard TARDIS I built from a kit I got in a cheap remaindered book). So I was only mildly interested when I heard about the new series, but after hearing about it all over the comic weblogiverseospheretopia over the past month I figured I'd try out the first episode, "Rose". It helped that getting CBC feeds from every time-zone it was available for five hours straight last night.

It wasn't bad, certainly brought out a lot of nostalgia, especially the sound effects, and was more watchable than the later stuff I remembered. I probably would have liked it a lot if I was still between 8 and 13. I thought the mix of throwback cheesy special effects and computer generated effects (well done but nothing really special, mostly just stock-issue explosions) was a bit odd, and didn't always work. The whole thing was actually an odd mix of scenes that seemed to try hard not to be anything like WHO and those that revelled in the WHO-ness. I also found the new Doctor a bit grating, but I'm sure he could grow on me. I did kind of like the new assistant, Rose, more than some I remembered (towards the end of my watching it was as much the annoying assistants as it was Davison that turned me off). I also didn't like the new interior of the TARDIS (and it felt weird to be able to see the interior from an exterior view when the door was open. It was never like that, was it?).

But the episode itself was passable, especially given that it had to re-establish a lot of stuff. There were a number of bits of dialogue that really fell flat when they were obviously trying for "important", always a mistake in DOCTOR WHO, and of course the Autons are a weak choice for villains (hopefully we'll see Daleks or Cyber-Men or the Master soon enough). But there are some fun parts, enough of a feeling that they get the heart of the concept, and enough of a nostalgia pull that I'll probably watch a few more episodes.

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