Sunday, November 2, 2014

Post-Dark Water Post


That shut me up. I mean, RTD did some impressive stuff with Utopia and The Stolen Earth in bringing back their respective OldSkool baddies - but, let's be honest, it might as well have revealed that Yana was Straxus and the Dalek Supreme was speaking to Yarvelling for all the plot would have changed. If anything, a lot of the joy was the baddies not being replaced by cut-price new versions (ie, the Foamasi replaced by Slitheen or the Forge by Torchwood).

Moffat impresses with Missy's identity in the opposite way - no one was rooting for it to be an old baddy. I considered no less than half a dozen possibilities of her true identity while simultaneously being willing to play the "someone new" card. In a way, I'm more shocked she turned out NOT to be River Song than the ultimate revelation.

And now, over to Sparacus.

8/10. That was a good episode, apart from the outrageous decision to have the Master regenerate into a woman. Other than that it was creepy, mysterious and well crafted. 

Yes, my poignant friends. Spara has not completely abandoned the concept of judging things outside his imagination. The episode concludes with Missy revealing that her name is short for "Mistress", adding that she used to be called "the Master".

(Though if it turns out to be a cop-out gag like the Valeyard in IDW's The Forgotten, Moffat might not live to see the Christmas special.)

This was the best aspect of the episode. Nuwho has played it safe for far too long. The classic series at its best always pushed the boundaries in terms of bad taste. More please. 

Just to clarify, he was referring to the concept of being cremated alive. Probably the closest NuWho has come to considering Miracle Day canon. 

Of course he wasn't speaking about the idea of the Master and the Doctor finally getting it on now their bodies are built to do just that. His intense wank fantasies have always relied on it being hot man-on-man action - and, for some reason, it always seems like a sick and wrong idea but when Charles Daniels does jokes about the exact same thing, it's heartwarming. Maybe because CD doesn't have either Time Lord ashamed of their past, while clear Spara thinks the idea of gay Time Lords is revolting and shameful and should require lots of Bowie-listening, red wine and lying on the couch wrist-slashing.

Now, the idea of Time Lords becoming Time Ladies has been around since 1981 where Tom Baker bluntly told the world that his replacement could be a woman and if you didn't like it you could fuck off like the whippet-shit you are. Anyone who's seen Season 17 and 18 will know that half the time Romana was the hero with the Doctor her sidekick, so the idea of a female lead was perfectly acceptable. Flatline, most recently, showed that having a woman with the sonic screwdriver does not affect the plot, and Catherine Tate's DoctorDonna while a tad two-dimensional was a better bet to carry the show on than REG for the whole of Scream of the Shalka.

Sidney Newman thought the idea was brilliant and wanted a female Doctor, and current godhead Moff Tarkin immediately had the Doctor turn into a woman in The Curse of Fatal Death (which also had the Master forced to wear fake breasts coz he's so damn camp). Then he allowed Neil Gaiman to reveal the Corsair was a Time Lord who, while clearly with a predilection for being a man, had regenerated into a woman more than once. Before bluntly having the Eighth Doctor offered the chance to turn into a woman by the Sisterhood of Karn - and they certainly didn't think it a laughing matter.

The very first scene from Moff as showruner had Matt Smith wonder if he'd regenerated into a girl!

The original Seventh Doctor (1985).

Certainly, it's an idea quite cheerfully embraced by the unbound - Barbara Benedetti's mini-eps were, notoriously, mistaken for a genuine BBC product and she was dubbed by DWM as one of the best fan Doctors, regardless of gender. DWM did a comic strip where a criminal pretended to be the Doctor - a female criminal, and even the sexist Ogron-like aliens in the story accepted the idea. BF's The Crimes of Thomas Brewster similarly had a woman pretending to be a regenerated Doctor (unsurprisingly doing a better and more endearing job than the whiney cunt of the title character). Even Exile - officially the least popular audio story, somehow even beating The Boy That Time Forgot - showed that the role is actor proof. After all, David Tennant is in the story but you'd definitely not end the play wanting HIM to be the Doctor any time soon, and Arabella Weir's Doctor was probably the best thing in it.

The original Eighth Doctor (1989).

So - there's no reason not to have a female Doctor, given it's been shown to be practical, part of the mythology and with precedent. As long as the actress can do it, there's nothing to stop Capaldi's replacement having ovaries.

And yet, despite a concept in the public eye for thirty-five-fucking-years, no one's been brave enough to go for it. Not one woman was considered for the role since 2005. RTD bluntly stated replacing Christopher Eccleston was going to be hard enough without "having to explain to children Dr Who's lost his willy", and Moffat has stated a woman in the role would - on a gut instinct - not convince him that he was looking at William Hartnell in a new body. Given the efforts to convince Clara and the audience Capaldi is the same man as the one on the other end of a telephone call, it's clearly something held to heart.

Personally, I've never liked the idea of the Doctor becoming a woman. Had a new series started with the Doctor always female, or just done a show about Romana, I'd be fine. But the idea of transforming the male character into a female brings up the plight of transsexuals - and it IS a plight, if you live convinced you're trapped in the wrong body and surgery is the only way to save your sanity.

So, having the Doctor become a woman can only mean

a) he is a man now trapped in a woman's body against his will


b) he has always been a woman trapped in a man's body against his will

This ties in with the most/the only interesting bit of Exile where it's stated that a Time Lord can only change gender if they commit suicide. Assuming this disregards "heroic sacrifice", in which case the Doctor should be flipping through genders like traffic lights, it's the suggestion that a Time Lord who wants to be a Time Lady so badly they cannot live with themselves any more, gets a chance to do that. And visa versa.

Which brings us back to the "so what?" territory. Yes, the Doctor could regenerate into a woman. By the same token, Romana could regenerate into a man. But, on the other hand, Clara Oswald could have a sex change. The human race has plenty of people who'd want to flip their gender, but also plenty who are quite comfortable with the genitalia fata has dealt them. The only other transgender Time Lord we know of, the Corsair, defined for his convention-breaking behavior, preferred being a man after giving womanhood a try. So just because it's now stated beyond all doubt the Thirteenth/Fourteenth/Whatever-After-Capaldi Doctor might possess XX chromosones is absolutely no reason to actually do it.

If the Doctor, after thirteen bodies, STILL hasn't got ginger hair, why should he get boobs?

Frankly, seeing the Master's transformation is less unsettling than Caroline's new haircut in 2 Broke Girls...

 Oh, how time changes people...

And now, over to Sparacus for his informed opinions.

Totally wrong in my opinion. It has seriously damaged one of Doctor Who's iconic characters and sets an awful precedent for what might happen to the Doctor in the future. Just plain wrong. The Master is male. The Doctor is male. End of. Turning the Doctor or Master into a woman makes no kind of sense as far as the basic continuity of the show is concerned. Why would the Master suddenly change gender after umpteen male incarnations?
It is bad because it doesn't fit with the history of the show. The Doctor has had 13 incarnations, all of them male. The Master's incarnations have all been male but suddenly we are now expected to believe that the Doctor can become female as the Master has. Its clearly been done for attention grabbing sake and is just plain wrong.

And when people react badly to his ranting...

Oh and I see the political correctness Stasi are out in force again.

Linking of the issue of the Master's gender with 'racism and sexism' is facile. I always believed that they were once lovers. That is not the problem. The problem is that no account has been taken of the basic continuity of the show. We have a logical, reasonable reason this is a bad idea. It conflicts with the continuity of the series so far.

And yes. The Corsair was mentioned innumerable times.

It is a fictional programme where the lead character has been male for 13 incarnations. Suddenly we are expected to beieve that each regeneration had a 50-50 chance of being female. Ridiculous. If they could change gender then they would have regenerated as a female before now.

I do not need to attend a class to work out that if a dice constantly rolls a six for 13 times then something other than chance is at play.

Though it's worth noting that the "other than chance" covers The War Games, Planet of the Spiders, Logopolis, The Night of the Doctor, The Parting of the Ways, Journey's End and The Time of the Doctor where it is stated outside forces shape the next Doctor. And Caves of Androzani if you believe fanon. So it's techically rolling a six four times...

Ok. Could you please tell me this. If I flip a coin, what are the odds on it being 'Heads' thirteen times in a row?

Yes, apparently it's 1 in 8192.

A clever dodging of the question. What are the odds of it being heads 13 times in a row? If you think its 50-50 you probably believe Santa Claus exists and there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Could you please give a straight answer rather than a politician's answer. You clearly lack the skills or knowledge to back up this suggestion?

As, genetically, being male or female is not 50/50 but 70/30 to being a girl, it's a waste of time discussing it anyway...

Evasion! What you are doing is avoiding stating the obvious ie that the chances of flipping a coin and getting heads 13 times in a row is thousands to one.

Actual reply: "1 in 2 to the power of thirteen. Obviously. How did you get to be a teacher without passing O level maths?"
Also the viewers know and identify with the Master as a male character. The Rani is a female Time Lord and could have been used for this role. Or openly reveal that the Master is gay.

At the moment it is canon. But a future writer could render it non-canon.

(Personally, I can't see how that could work - to retcon something you have to admit it happened in the first place, so at the very least this future writer would be saying the Master's in drag for this adventure...)

I don't see why transgender people will be insulted by my behavior.

And nor does he care.

No one has thought of how the fans will react.

There is clearly a political correctness agenda going on.

(At least we can take comfort that, with all these gay, straight, youth, feminist agendas around, the people of today are still very goal-oriented.)


Matthew Blanchette said...

I eagerly await photoshoppings of Michelle Gomez with a stylish goatee.

Youth of Australia said...

I've seen some efforts on that score.

They tend to resemble that Eurovision winner, for obvious reasons...

Matthew Blanchette said...

By the way, what did you think of "Death in Heaven"?

Youth of Australia said...

Kinda liked it. Will blog later.

Matthew Blanchette said...

Personally? I didn't think it was as good as part one... sorry. :-S

Youth of Australia said...

You're forgiven. ;)

Matthew Blanchette said...

Always and completely forgiven? :-)

Youth of Australia said...

Yeah, push your luck, that's a smart move.

Matthew Blanchette said...

Not pushing my luck; just referencing "The Wedding of River Song". You don't remember, after three years? :-P

Youth of Australia said...

Either you refer to the awesomeness that is the Brigadier becoming Kroton the Cyberman, and, ergo, god of all that exists.

Or you want me to marry you before you shoot me in the gut.


Or both.

Matthew Blanchette said...

It won't hurt any if you're in a Teselecta! ;-)

Youth of Australia said...

Yeah, that's what they all say.

Matthew Blanchette said...

They'll evacuate you in time, don't worry! Just stand still! :-D