Archive for August, 2010
You’d think that iTunes would have somehow put these in something close to chronological order… but where would the fun be in that, right?
Doctor Who: Planet of the Spiders (from iTunes): The Doctor’s past has caught up with him, and now he must risk death to save the universe from the evil clutches of the Great One.
The four things of note from this (otherwise cheesy) series of episodes…
The Doctor gets a sweet set of wheels! Kevin Smith would be proud of it… since it’s a FLYING car!
UNIT (UNified Intelligence Taskforce, or United Nations Intelligence Taskforce)
I guess the good Doctor worked for the British government? From Wikipedia…
UNIT (UNified Intelligence Taskforce, or United Nations Intelligence Taskforce) is a fictional military organisation from the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures. Operating under the auspices of the United Nations, its purpose is to investigate and combat paranormal and extraterrestrial threats to the Earth. In the original Doctor Who series, several UNIT personnel (such as The Brigadier) played a major role in the programme.
Following the broadcast of the 2005 series, executive producer Russell T Davies explained that the real life United Nations were no longer happy to be associated with the fictional organisation, and the UN’s full name could no longer be used. However, the “UNIT” and “UN” abbreviations can be used, as long as it is not explained what the letters stand for. In 2008, he announced that the organisation’s name has been changed to the “Unified Intelligence Taskforce”. This new name was first mentioned on-screen in “The Sontaran Stratagem”.
The Brigadier is a great addition to the show and this was my second time seeing him. A fun straight man to many of the Doctor’s offbeat actions and comments, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart very much grounds the series (pun intended) on Earth. He helps carry Planet of the Spiders with humor and a sense of purpose.
SPOILER ALERT! (THOUGH YOU SHOULD KNOW THIS AFTER 30 SOME ODD YEARS…)
It seems that my SECOND outing with the THIRD doctor was his FINAL appearance. In the last episode, I was treated to my FIRST regeneration scene… Jon Pertwee fades away to become Tom Baker.
Overall, the most interesting thing about the Planet of the Spiders was the passing of the Doctor. The Spiders as villains seemed somewhat inferior in comparison to previous villains, and I was kind of disappointed that such weakly developed evil characters where the undoing of the Third Doctor.
You know, if BotCon truly is such a GREAT convention AND you think that the review from Joey Snackpants and I penned was wrong because we “didn’t spend enough time” there – wouldn’t it make sense to want us to come back and experience it again to see if we were wrong and write a follow up? Or does the show really just fail that badly that you’re afraid of what we’d notice the second time around?
It makes for some fun reading. For now, though, I’m going to bed… and yes: Beast Wars stills sucks.
or “Spotting Star Wars Characters in Doctor Who #1: Boba Fett”
Yeah… that’s Jeremy Bulloch totally rocking that mullet.
The Time Warrior was my (pleasant) introduction to the 3rd Doctor: Jon Pertwee. Thus far, he has proven to be my favorite with his dry British humor and Austin Powers flair. The man exudes sixties awesomeness… all the way down to his karate chop fighting skills.
Doctor Who: The Time Warrior (from iTunes): Scientists are being kidnapped from a research station, and the Doctor suspects they are being pulled backwards into the past.
From what I read about these episodes AFTER watching them, it seemed I started watching the 3rd Doctor’s adventures from an interesting point in the story. From Wikipedia:
This episode marks a number of firsts: the first appearance of both Sarah Jane Smith and the Sontarans; the first mention of the name Gallifrey, in reference to the Doctor’s home planet; and the first appearance of several actors who would later reappear in other stories, including Kevin Lindsay and David Daker. It also marks the first appearance of a new opening credits sequence and a new diamond-shaped logo.
I had heard the name Sarah Jane mentioned before as a favorite “companion” among the Doctor Who fans. I had assumed (incorrectly) that the newer appearances of her were as a recast actress in the same role which confused me a bit since all the recast Doctors are technically the same doctor. It would seem, though, that the same actress had returned for the recent appearances… but I digress.
The Time Warrior seems (to me at least) a great example of classic Doctor Who. I can’t go on enough about how magnificently Jon Pertwee sells me on the eccentric traveler through space and time to the point of watching him in even more episodes.
I am fairly certain I need that groovy looking jacket the Doctor is wearing.
Since the early nineties, I’ve always watched the geek feuds explode over Kirk vs. Picard. The battle expanded as additional television series kept getting added to the Star Trek universe and now you can technically argue “who is the better captain”?
Kirk vs. Picard vs. Sisko vs. Janeway vs. Archer vs. New Kirk
While that may seem complicated, it’s NOTHING compared to the world of the Doctor Who geeks. Since my post a couple of months ago about starting to watch the series, I have had a number of different people tell me which Doctor is the best – and no one has picked the same Doctor twice. There are currently eleven Doctors (though purists correct me and convey that there have been others, but “it’s complicated” is all they tell me.) I have been exposed to only a couple, and the one in this post (the second Doctor, Patrick Troughton) was more interesting than the first one to me.
Doctor Who: The Krotons (from iTunes): The TARDIS arrives on the unnamed planet of the Gonds, who are rules and taught in a form of self-perpetuating slavery by the alien Krotons – crystalline beings whose ship, the Dynatrope, crash-landed there thousands of years ago after being damaged in a space battle. The Krotons are at present in suspended animation, in a crystalline slurry form, awaiting a time when they can be resconstituted by absorption of mental energy. Periodically, the two most brilliant Gond students are received by the Dyantrope, apparently to become “companions of the Krotons” but in truth to have their mental energy drained, after which they are killed When the Doctor and Zoe take the students’ test, their mental power is sufficient to reanimated the Krotons. The Doctor discovers that their life system is based on tellurium and, with help from the Gond scientist Beta, he is then able to destroy them and their ship using an impure form of sulfuric acid.
The episodes aired in 1968 and 1969. Ironically, I watched an episode of Star Trek the same time I was watching the Doctor Who episodes called The Return of the Archons about a superior computer convincing a race of people to live in a limited way in an attempt to maintain order for the population. Slightly similar – and the Trek episode aired in 1967. It seems that computer driven mass mind control was well feared around the globe in the sixties. I’ll start watching for a Mad Men episode about it to air any moment now.
Aside from the improved level of British humor in these episodes, the only thing that stands out is the fact that the TARDIS is finally travelling across space and time. Did I like watching it? Yes. Did the second Doctor “knock it out of the park” for me? No. He’s amusing, but not enough to sell me on the series.
ADDED NOTE: Since it’s been a while since I’ve posted about this, it should be noted that the “working out” in the title has to do with the fact that I watch these shows while at the gym via iPod/exercise cycle technology.
Sometimes staying at home CAN be a vacation.
Next month seems to be stacking up fairly fast. My weekends in September are starting look like this:
October may be limited to a weekend in Miami… November might be Las Vegas… and after that? Who knows.
In other news, the Bot-tards are still stalking my blog. Check it out here. Joey Snackpants and I are discussing the possibility of going back to BotFAIL next year in California to write a follow up for You Bent My Wookie. We’re even talking about spending the money on the insane top tier level tickets JUST to do a complete comparison and between how people are treated at the show when they are considered the “1337″ and how people are treated as general attendees (which we learned the hard way in Orlando.)