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[personal profile] pitry
This is the first Doctor Who episode I've seen since the 3 episodes I've seen from s6 - I have not seen the show regularly since The Big Bang. And y'know what? I felt like I've already seen this episode 3 times.

It's the law of diminishing returns. You see this in long television shows without an arc-plan where the same creative team stays on for years and years. I should know, I am/was a Stargate fan. There comes the time when the writers simply exhausted everything they had to say about a certain world, certain characters, certain situations. There are a lot of ways of countering it. Sometimes they add characters, kill old ones, make a radical change in setting... You see this in Doctor Who so much. Change the Doctor. Change the companion. Change the setting - is he stuck on Earth or having a setting? Are we doing episode of the week or is there an arc? Is the Doctor happy-go-lucky or PTSDed or bored or having a meltdown? That's why Doctor Who has been so incredibly successful even after years and years. It's so easy to change everything.

And there comes the time when even that isn't enough. There comes the time when the head writer needs to realise the problem isn't the format, or the characters, or the setting. It's him. There comes the time when the writer needs to be honest with himself and realise that he's said and done everything he ever had in mind for the show. And it is time for him to move on from it.

Because the show isn't bad. That's the thing. That's the most awful thing about it all. It's not bad. Steven Moffat has not driven it to the ground. It's not atrocious, or the acting ridiculous, or the setting boring, or the characters uninteresting (well, this was my first encounter with Clara and she came off as the a one-note Feisty Moffat Companion (TM), but let's focus on the Doctor here). It really isn't that. It's that he's not even trying anymore. There is something admirable in going for something completely ambitious and falling on your arse. But that's not what Moffat is doing. He's foregone ambitious. Now he's just telling the same old story, again and again and again. Using the same old tricks, again and again and again. The thing about using a formula is that you know that it works. But as long as you use the formula, you can't try anything else. You can't fail - but you can't shoot higher than what the formula allows you to. Steven Moffat comes off as a writer who is too afraid to fall on his arse. He's too afraid to shoot for something completely different and fail. He's being complacent.

The show isn't bad. It's just stagnant and mediocre. Which is worse than bad.

My opinion of Day of the Doctor? Dear Steven Moffat, it's time for you to leave Doctor Who and go pursue something completely different. Give the show to someone else. Someone with their own ideas and dreams, someone with their own ambitions, someone who will dare try, even if it means they might fail.

Date: 28/11/2013 10:20 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dbskyler.livejournal.com
LOL, you and I just have totally different tastes, don't we? Although at least it doesn't sound like you hated this as much as I hated "Last of the Time Lords."

Date: 28/11/2013 20:06 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pitry.livejournal.com
Nah, I didn't hate it. I'm just exasperated at this point TBH :) (and ha, I missed Ten. It's interesting how quickly I warm up to the nonsense on the screen when it's Ten doing the nonsense!)

Date: 29/11/2013 01:32 (UTC)
clocketpatch: A small, innocent-looking red alarm clock, stuck forever at 10 to 7. (Default)
From: [personal profile] clocketpatch
Some day, maybe, Who will get a script editor who can find the middle ground between Rusty's ridiculously ridiculous 'let's have Timothy Dalton as Rassilon, and Rose back again, and in DUBAI! Because.' and Moffat's, 'let's have a character die... and then come back. Again. That works.'

And the thing is, I know this exists, because it's happened before. That's what The Empty Child and Blink were. I don't think Moffat needs to leave, I think he just needs, like Russel before him, to have someone with veto power looking over his scripts and telling him when he's falling into a rut, writing the same character over and over, making blatant plot holes, not finishing story arcs, and being sexist without realizing it (because, I honestly don't think he realizes it, even when pointed out to him, and no, that doesn't give him a pass). In short:

Who needs a beta-reader.

(I do think that the 50th was ambition though, maybe not plot-wise, but being an Anniversary episode it couldn't be. It was ambitious for being ridiculous enough to try and make a 3D movie on a TV budget)

(I also really liked the 50th, because it was fun and whacky, but had some good emotional moments, and generally ticked off all of the boxes of what I wanted to see while giving me the unexpected Tom Baker at the end. The rest of Moffat's Who however, with the exception of s.5 and a few scattered episodes past that I find... underwhelming, and for exactly the reasons you describe)

Date: 01/12/2013 09:52 (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pitry.livejournal.com
I agree Moffat works in small doses - I actually really loved Blink, but it became tiring very fast in s5.

I do think that the 50th was ambition though, maybe not plot-wise, but being an Anniversary episode it couldn't be.

I'm actually not sure this was the case ;) I felt like he TRIED to be ambitious - after all, this isn't just a write-it-off one shot like the Five Doctors and the Three Doctors, this is meant to have huge significant to the rest of the show (also, the whole War Doctor thing - it feels to me like he was added so that Moffat would have control over the 13th regeneration barrier?). So in a way it tried to be ambitious a lot more than a Rusty-esque Big!! Finale!!! or the previous multi Doctor episodes. It just.. tried to be ambitious the Moffat way, which is playing it safe. If that makes sense?


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