Monday, May 2, 2011

The Implausible Astronaut/Day of the Loon


It’s been two months since Amy and Rory last saw the Doctor, and they are now living back on Earth in wedded bliss, indulging in bondage, whipped-cream orgies and lesbian animal threesomes. Rory has never been happier, and neither has the local suppliers of KY jelly, swarfega and gimp outfits.

However, they soon realise that the Doctor is trying to attract their attention, deliberately leaving ridiculous adventures in history for them to find - by cunning use of editing wikipedia pages so he not only shagged King Charles' I prostitute, aided the Nazis in recapturing British prisoners, and being the main star in the Laurel and Hardy comedy "By My Fez I was Betrayed".

Amy and Rory dismiss the clingy loser and get back to shagging.

Finally, the Doctor is finally able to get their attention with some junkmail claiming that they have one a brand new Ford Tippex which they can collect absolutely free on their holiday to the middle of the Utah Desert (minus flights and accomodation, anyway). Being vapid consumer whores, the Ponds immediately do as they're told and arrive at the rendezvous to meet Dr River Song, who has broken out of a maximum security prison three millennia in the future because she got some junk mail saying she'd won first prize in an Annoyingly Secretive And Smug Bitch contest.

However, they do not find their prizes, merely the Doctor and his TARDIS (now in the inconspicuous shape of an obsolete Metropoliton Edsel) who is eager to know if any of his loser mates have missed him at all since the last Christmas Special.

A clue: No.

After River has repeatedly fired her gun at the Doctor's head, screaming he is a "lying motherfucker" who best provide that pop-up toaster she believes she's won, the Last of the Time Lord has a pathetic attack of miserable self-pity. He whines and moans he just wanted his friends to have a picnic in a ridiculously inconvenient and unpleasant locale for old time's sake, but it looks like everyone hates him all of a sudden and he's so lonely.

Following a good fifteen minutes of tears, recriminations and self-pity, the Doctor shouts that if Amy, Rory and River don't want to be his friends any more well, he'll just throw himself in front of the first homicidal astronaut he finds climing out of the nearby Lake StoryArcius. "Yeah, maybe when I'm DEAD you'll all be sorry!" he shouts unhappily before he is zapped dead by a homicidal astronaut who just happened to emerge from the lake while he was talking.

River and the Ponds are convinced this is all some stupid practical joke and wait patiently for the Doctor to stop holding his breath and get to his feet. However, after the first six hours, Rory begins to wonder if maybe the Doctor's on the level this time, but Amy remains unconvinced... at least until a passing redneck wanders over to the body, pours gasoline on it, lights a fire and starts toasting marshmallows before wandering off.

Suddenly Rory burst into tears and falls to the ground wailing how unfair this is - but mainly to show Amy how embarrassing she looks when she pines after the Time Lord. Amy takes offense, but River agrees the ginger girl can get pretty awkward in social situations at times.

Just then, a younger and less pathetic version of the Eleventh Doctor arrived - having got some junkmail promising a lifetime's supply of stupid hats. Realising that they must keep the Doctor’s future a secret from him, Amy, River and Rory take great pleasure in making lots of dumb jokes about "spacemen" and "lakes", most of which not even the audience understand because they're not even remotely funny.

For want of something to do now they know how the series ends, the Doctor, the Ponds and River decide to travel back to 1969 and humiliate Richard Nixon just before the Watergate scandal. However, after turning the TARDIS invisible, parking in the oval office and lining the place with bugs and tape recorders, all they get is Nixon getting lots of prank phone calls from someone claiming to be "Little Timmy" who is "trapped down the well".

The Doctor bursts from the TARDIS and shouts that he recognizes that wheedling American voice as none other than Captain Jack Harkness-nee-Sparrow, who is passing the time before Woodstock prank-calling political leaders and taking vast amounts of LSD. President Nixon does not take kindly to an invisible Edsel in the White House and has the TARDIS crew beaten up, stripped naked and forced to form a human pyramid while he laughs evilly and fires high-pressure hoses at them.

When the Doctor notes that this was one of the many reasons Nixon was a fuckwit, River calls him a stupid hippy peacenik commie bastard - which, in the 51st century, is the highest of compliments for someone with a keen grasp on human behavior.

Once enough of the episode has gone by to justify the expensive Oval Office set, Amy complains she's all nauseous, bloated, hormonal and has missed at least three mentrual cycles. The others assume this is some weak attempt at characterization, and simply wander off in the TARDIS while Nixon rants he will soon achieve the Ultimate Victory - THE DESTRUCTION! OF VIETNAM! ITSELF!!!

The budget for overseas filming has run out so rather than visiting anywhere interesting in America, the TARDIS must arrive in the Deserted Warehouse District of Nervada - which, coincidentally, is where they find Captain Jack... ripped off his tits of cocaine and down to "six green bottles hanging on the wall".

Idly wandering around the warehouse to pad out the rest of the episode, River stumbles across another TARDIS disguised cunningly as a Nervada sewage treatment plant. As Rory point out that, out of all the regulars present SHE is undoubtedly the most smug and annoying, River breaks open the door and finds a TARDIS control room and immediately decides to hotwire it. Rory notes that the blaring car alarms and unfashionable furry dice suggest it might be a good reason to get the hell out of there pretty darn quick.

He is then attacked by a potted cactus screaming "VENGEANCE SHALL BE MINE!"

Upstairs, the Doctor is surreptitiously nicking Captain Jack's wallet and offers some strange pills he finds there to Amy. Amy, being suicidally insane and reckless, takes the pills. Her pupils grow very, very large and she announces that she is pregnant. When the Doctor points out "that's the drugs talkin", she pulls out a gun and tries to shoot him - but luckily the Doctor finds a six-year-old girl to use as a human sheild.

As Amy fires round after round into the helpless, screaming child, the Doctor turns directly to camera and says, "Blimey, last time I give anyone Fox's glacier mints any time soon..."

To Be Continued...


Realizing that that last cliffhanger was incredibly pissweak, the TARDIS crew decide to combine their forces to make the most epic of all possible dramatic peaks and in three minutes, Captain Jack has hunted down Amy and Rory, shot them dead and sealed them in body bags. Not to be outdone, River Song throws herself off a tall building (since she's from a time period where the audience have yet to see what a cheap and pathetic ploy that is).

The Doctor, however, goes for gold by travelling to Area 51 and personally insulting every single operative's mother, ending with the oft-quoted tagline "...and the pigs had to be blindfolded before they could achieve an erection!"

Minutes later the Time Lord is chained up inside a block of pure dwarf star alloy, the most perfect prison ever devised... since the last one... also, curiously enough, used for a cheap-ass cliffhanger. As the last brick is sealed, the Doctor realizes that he hasn't actually thought of a kickass dues ex machina of wibbly wobby escape clause to save all their lives.

"Au contraire, shipmate," Captain Jack slurs, having ingeniously used the TARDIS to save everyone from their stick fates. Even River, unfortunately.

With this completely pointless sequence resolved, the Doctor decides it's time to get dark and gritty, time for Doctor Who to GROW THE BEARD. However, the beard looks shithouse and is quickly shaved off by the time of the opening credits.

Wandering around, desperate for some kind of plotline, Amy, Rory and River start tally-marking their own skin as the Moffat cliches pile up. Captain Jack suggests they check out a creepy, stormlashed orphanage where a single kid is being all sinister and supernatural. Amy quickly covers her own face in tally-marks.

After meeting the bewildered, mindwiped and insect-eating Dr Renfield in the dilapidated orphanage daubed with warnings to "Get Out", the team can't take how predictable things are getting. The Doctor goes to fiddle with the controls of the Apollo 11 command capsule so Michael Collins is the only one able to operate it, meaning that Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin get to do all the fun stuff while he stays behind in the spaceship. River Song becomes a White House intern who does naughty things to all the good-looking CIA MIBs at gunpoint (HER gun, obviously), while Rory takes a truly impressive amount of LSD and starts wearing classes and demands to be called "mild-mannered millionaire playboy Bruce Kent".

After Captain Jack wanders around the deserted wards on the orphanage's upper levels, flirting with a mysterious woman with an eyepatch locked in a cell marked "101 STORY ARCS", he finally notices that Amy is missing. He spots a space-suited figure lumbering through the orphanage and politely asks if she's seen a ridiculously tall redhead in a flannelette shirt flirting with anyone. The astronaut apologizes but she hasn't, and the two bizarre figures go their separate ways.

Back in Area 51, the Doctor notes that there aren't any villains this week, meaning they're stuck with a rather surreal Big-Train-style comedy sketch TV show. "We need an enemy, some kind of space bastards... from space! You know the type, all big and grey with huge heads and spindly fingers, the sort of people who say "We are Space Bastards and you can't do anything about it. Look, observe our bastardry! Now we shall taunt you with our creepy voice and mind control abilities! Now, go, little human person, go and be suckered into our machiavellian schemes. Also: Evil!"

Unfortunately, despite all the hype, Area 51 has nothing on offer.

"This place is a lot cooler in the films," the Time Lord grumbles.

Eleven days later, as the Apollo 11 mission approaches the Moon, Rory finally suggests simply checking the proto-TARDIS downstairs to see if Amy's there. And bugger us sideways, it turns out she is. Pausing to watch Niel Armstrong step on the moon, the Doctor finally releases Amy and they all skip happily away... bar River who goes batshit crazy with a laser gun until the proto-TARDIS is in ruins, thus allowing its canonical appearance several episodes ago.

"Continuity is like karma," River notes. "Inescapable."

Dropping off Captain Jack at the Oval Office to have sex with the nearest intern, the Doctor gets President Nixon to sign the Time Lord's prized copy of Alan Moore's Watchmen, and promising the President he will always be remembered as a minor recurring character in "Futurama", albeit not as funny or popular as Hermes.

Next, River Song returns to the Stormcage Facility until she can work out whether or not this story occurs before or after the last two-parter she was in. The archaeologists attempts to bum some money off the Doctor leave him flummoxed. For him, its the first time she's borrowed money off him, but River rather unconvincingly promises she's already paid him back.

Back in the TARDIS, it strikes the Doctor and Rory that Amy bigged up how pregnant she was in the previous episode and absolutely nothing has been made of that plot twist ever since. Amy shrugs, and suggests they could do another love triangle this year about which one of her boys is the father.

"Pfft!" the Doctor snorts. "Who do you think is writing this? Gary Russell?"

The Doctor programs the TARDIS to scan the redhead and see if she's even actually pregnant. However, the console monitor simply reads "REPLY HAZY - TRY AGAIN LATER", so the trio decide to forget all about this until the epic season finale where it might possibly become relevent. Somehow. Maybe.

Meanwhile, six months later in a story arc moment that will no doubt be ignored for the next two years, we discover that Jenny, the Doctor's Daughter, has caught a fatal dose of the clap at a New York brothel. Luckily, being a Time Lady, she can regenerate - and unfortunately does so during sex with her latest customer, Nigel Verkoff. The end result is that Jenny has a brand new, disease-free body... and Nigel has some nasty burns on a very awkward part of his anatomy.

(NOTE: apparently there were some evil alien masterminds in this story, but I sure as hell don't remember any.)


Matthew Blanchette said...

What a depressing review. Nice to see you've turned into Larry Miles, Ewen. :-(

Youth of Australia said...

Maybe because it WASN'T A REVIEW you idiot!

It was a reference to my other blog

and forgive me for assuming a level of intelligence of the readership here.

But no, once again, the morons triumph.

Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

Gave me a good laugh. 'Using an eight year old girl as a human shield' was my favourite part, along with the 'jump in front of the next homicidal astronaut'

Also, Larry Miles comparison? WTF? Aside from LM never doing parodies, I've never seen him write something 100% about the episode.

You'd know if this was an LM parody because

a) There'd be constant accusations of Neil Gaiman and Steven Moffat being the worst human beings ever for minor grievances Miles has with them from a decade and a half ago.

b) At least one reference to a childrens' show/film from the 70s

c) Insisting the show shouldn't be scary

d) Lengthy comparison to Star Wars which could count as an essay itself

e) Disturbing allusions to mental issues, squalid private life and/or sexual fetishes

because those are all the tell-tale signs. No offense, but do you actually read Larry? I never miss post, myself. (Unless he deletes it too quickly.. ;) )

Youth of Australia said...

Well... I suppose B) and E) are similar...

No, I've had a chat with Matt (what a cool talkshow title), where he explained he had sensed my declining good cheer - mind you, after the last couple of weeks with the deaths of such luminaries as Elisabeth Sladen or Osama Bin Laden, the collapse of the Chaser's wedding coverage, it's hard to stay a 100% cheerful.

Dunno where the Mad Larry thing came from. (Though amused his latest review rants about inaccessible story arcs from the guy who mugged Doctor Who in a back alleyand introduced Faction Paradox despite the screams of "rape" from all sides).

For the record, I'm holding back the synopsis of the next episode, partially because I don't want to spoil it for you, partly because of the crucial question if the lady who plays Chloe from SGU is hotter than the redhead from tatu.

And believe me, that latter question is vital to the story arc.

Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

How are you with SGU - have you been watching the second half of the season? And I gather you've heard the painful news that it's being cancelled and isn't ever ever coming back?

Youth of Australia said...

I rapidly grew disenfranchised when Rush became a born-again Christian, Chloe became an indestructible alien and Monkey-Face teamed up with the Ninja Turtles on another gate ship to fight some random aliens we'd never seen before.

Judging from the reviews I've got from the esteemed CJ Mason, it's gone so far downhill it's sub-Something-Borrowed and the cancellation is a mercy killing, if anything.

Depressing outcome.

Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

Hmmm... now I get to do my Matt Blanchette impression..

Well *I* like it.

:P ;)

Maybe I'm too sci-fi starved, I wasn't really put off by the Telford/aliens thing, and didn't mind the Chloe subplot UNTIL it seemed that her alien metamorphosis was working precisely in a way to avoid plot difficulties. The Rush believing in God thing was... man, wtf?

Lukcily... only hinted at in that one episode. But.... why the fuck hint at it? So catastrophically out of character. I thought made worse by the fact that Dr Walter Bishop in Fringe has a Christianity story arc going on at the moment...

And the US wonder why the rest of the world thinks of them as bible-bashers?

Youth of Australia said...

I haven't seen any eps since the last season finale. Maybe it IS awesome, but I liked the aimless desperate fight for survival rather than picking fights with CGI aliens. Repeatedly. And the biblebasing stuff.

Rush slagging off HHGTG annoyed me, too...

Matthew Blanchette said...

Well, thanks for giving me a new talk show idea, Ewen (joking, joking!), but... I guess I don't mind the story arc unspooling like this, even if it is a bit derivative of the Moff's earlier triumphs.

If nothing else, I am curious to see how a be-eyepatched Frances Barber plays into all this... ;-)