Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Doctor Is In

The first episode of Series 3 of the new "Doctor Who" has aired. Personally I felt it wasn't as strong an opening as Series 1 & 2 had, which makes me concerned that Russell T. Davies is possibly spreading himself too thin with oversight of too many Who-related projects (in addition to Doctor Who's third season there is also the 13 part animated series for Children's BBC, the "Sarah Jane Smith Adventures" has been picked up for a debut season, and "Torchwood" is working on its second season). Reminds me a bit of when Joss Whedon was simultaneously working on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," "Angel," and "Firefly" all at the same time - in my opinion both Buffy and Angel suffered for it as his attention was clearly on Firefly (too bad Fox Broadcasting's attention wasn't on it).


When I first saw still shots of the aliens from "Smith & Jones" (the first episode of Series 3) I thought "Cool! They're going to re-do the Sontarans!" I mean, look at the publicity shot of one of them with the helmet on - especially when viewed mostly from the front, and darn it, if that doesn't scream "Sontaran" I don't know what does. But, sadly, they are not new Sontarans with a bit of literal Rhinoplasty. Frankly, they reminded me a bit more of the Vogons from "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."
It was also obvious why the Doctor would choose Martha as his new companion. She wasn't flustered by clearly hearing two hearts, she didn't lose her head when the hospital was scooped up to the Moon, nor when the aliens came, and she was willing to risk stepping out on the balcony, even though she didn't know if it might kill her. Though did they really have to "hang a lantern" on the fact she's not going to really replace Rose by actually having the Doctor SAY that to her? They also alluded to Rose when the Doctor grabbed Martha's hand and said "Run" (which, as you might recall, was the first thing the Doctor ever said to Rose).

So, anyway, good to see the Doctor back in action, and the previews for episode 2 look pretty good so maybe it was just a weak start.

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