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Who, Meh? - The Titfield Thunderbolt
Heisenberg might have stayed here
Who, Meh?
After spending a very pleasant yesterday evening at angry_marmot's party in Oxford, I've just caught up on Who.
I don't appear to have written about this for a few episodes; not much to say about The Sontaran Stratagem/The Poison Sky - I quite enjoyed them, in many ways rather traditional episodes. Of course, the line "you could wear a T-Shirt with 'CLONE' printed on it - but maybe not in front of Captain Jack" caused some carry-on style sniggering in this house.

The trailer for The Doctor's Daughter gave off conflicting signals, which were fulfilled by the episode itself. It's really taken a long time to have the confidence to go off-world, but as with Planet of the Ood, that part seemed to work quite well. And there were some nice if not original ideas - the accelerated generations, the terraforming for example. But so many things didn't work. For example, why didn't the Hath speech get translated by the TARDIS? Wouldn't things be a lot easier if you set off the terraforming devoce first thing after landing on the planet, rather than having to rely on your limited supplies? The plot was a bit Face of Evil; a bit State of Decay and Keeper of Traken, but not as good as any of them, by far. (I momentarily wondered, not having caught the planet's name, if The Source might actually mean we were on Traken at some point in some other place after it disappeared in Logopolis, but that probably just indicates that even a moderate fan-boy knows more about continuity than most writers of the New Who; then again, I also wondered whether it might be some post-apocalyptic Earth, particularly as Martha emerged onto the planet's surface). I think this might have been better treated as a two-parter with more scope to explore some of the ideas, they were just too condensed. Unfortunately the part fulfilled by Jenny, and her destiny, was all very predictable, and as others have written, there's a big flashing light that says clue to series finale here.


3 comments or Leave a comment
white_hart From: white_hart Date: May 11th, 2008 06:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
I wondered about the Hath speech, and thought that perhaps when they were wearing the masks they could only communicate via radio or something, in the same way as humans in diving suits? I must say I think it's probably a recipe for disaster, sending a joint expedition of two species who can't actually communicate...
strange_complex From: strange_complex Date: May 11th, 2008 07:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Haha, you're so right about the terraforming device! And good point about Face of Evil, too.

As for the Hath, I think they just couldn't speak. Martha seemed to begin to learn to interpret their gestures, though, so we can assume that the original colonists would also have been able to do so - but that the knowledge got lost in the cloning programme.
pm215 From: pm215 Date: May 11th, 2008 07:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Curiously, in the BBC3 behind-the-scenes thingy, when they showed some bits of them shooting scenes with Martha and the Hath, the Hath was actually speaking ("I'm coming to save you", etc). Perhaps that was just so the actor got the timing right, though.
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