I haven't been writing much about Doctor Who, either this season or the previous one, mainly for one reason: I watch it every week at a good friend's house (who has a full-sized projector and amazing sound system, as well as being a gourmet cook), but only on Tuesday. Meaning I'm always catching it later than everyone else, in what is frankly an impressively gargantuan act of self-control for a lifelong whovian.
Now, that means I haven't seen yesterday's episode (so don't spoiler me you fuckers!), but I did see the series premiere, and I was quite impressed. I didn't want people to get the idea that I wasn't digging the new series anymore. Quite the contrary, I was deeply impressed by the first episode, to the point that I'm fairly nervous about whether the follow up could possibly live up to it.
In any case, though, I have trouble getting people who are displeased with the new series as a whole. Of course, there are episodes that are better than others, there are some episodes that have massively sucked. But there are some episodes of the old Doctor Who that massively sucked too. Nor do I get the idea that the quality of the series has declined somehow; it's certainly changed, and there were some great details about the Davies era that were worthwhile (though the overall "chavvy" atmosphere and the obsession with Rose were definitely not among them), and likewise there was stuff in the early Moffat seasons which were quite good too (though River Song absolutely wasn't among them). Yet, with Capaldi, what we've got is in many ways closer to classic Dr.Who than ever. It's finally a grownup as the doctor, an end to the interminable boyfriend-girlfriend dynamics with the companions (note: I'm not one of these nerds who was horrified at the very idea of this, but the real problem with the idea is that we pretty much got years and years of it until it no longer seemed interesting in the least). And Capaldi... man, he's like Jon Pertwee crossed with John Constantine or something. He's the doctor I've waited half my fucking life for.
And the first episode of this season, the risk of failing to deliver in the second part aside, it was fantastic.
A totally new dynamic with the Master (Mistress, whatever) and in the plot with Davros we have a brilliant re-envisioning (by a much older, much more life-hardened Doctor) of the dilemma first posed in Genesis of the Daleks.
So yeah; there are a few old Whovians who were determined to hate the new series no matter what (Brett, I'm looking at you here), and a few others who have not taken the new style of the show well, and a few others who were more new-series fans that may have had trouble adapting to the new style of the Capaldi era.
But I'm not any of those.
Maybe it's because I agonized through a fucking decade and a half of no new Doctor Who. I'm not going to easily forget what that was like. The show would have to be at least two orders of magnitude worse than it is before I could possibly feel like it's something worth complaining about, especially given the alternative.
Currently Smoking: Dunhill Classic Series Rhodesian & C&D's Crowley's Best