Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Remembrance of the Daleks - 17 November 2008

Jasmine Breaks, who spoke the immortal line, "You were born to serve the Daleks"

We went back but not too far this week. The Doctor #7 and Ace adventure takes us back to where it all started in 1963 - Coal Hill School and 76 Totter's Lane. The Doctor has left something there and is going back for it.

The Hand of Omega.

Jacob Klein and I were joined by David Register for a good time. The characterization of the Doctor by Sylvester McCoy is one of my favorites, as he is both silly and zany while at the same time being dark and mysterious. Ace meets a handsome guy, but looks can be deceiving. Both Jacob and David got to see an earlier version of Davros as well. And how can you go wrong with a cosmically charged aluminium baseball bat as a weapon?

Hooray for Jasmine Breaks, who not only uttered the line above, but also while playing hopscotch, said eerily, "5-6-7-8, it's the Doctor at the gate."

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Dragonfire 10 November 2008

Dragonfire team: Ace, the Doctor, Sabalom Glitz and Mel

It was time to dip back into DW history a bit. Jacob was curious about other Doctors, and so we decided to have a look at Sylvester McCoy, Doctor #7. Of course, with Sylvester comes one of the most dynamic figures in that era, Sophie Aldred in the role of Ace.

Ace was a street kind from Thatcher-era UK who was doing an explosive experiment and was carried away by a time storm. She ended up in the other end of the universe in a place called Iceworld. Ace is there as a waitress (she was working in a fast food restaurant back on Earth) but longs to get away and see the universe.

Ace, Mel and the Doctor meet the sinister Kane, a super-cold being that can live only a low temperatures and is being held prisoner on Iceworld. Sabalom Glitz, a returning figure from the days of Doctor #6 is also there. There is a treasure, a dragon, a mystery and a secret plot. Of course. The planet also seems to be preoccupied by questions of metaphysical philosophy. What a strange combination of elements!

It was good. I love this episode, except for the occasional failed physical humor, but it all fits together well.

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Enemy Within 3 November 2008

Back home from South Amrica and I am ready fo Doctor Who Theater! This week we decided to change up the mood and watch a very important episode -- the one where Fox actually makes Doctor Who, where it occurs on American television, where Paul McGann becomes the Doctor, where it is the most videotaped program of the year, but it still fails to spark a new series contract. Paul McGann did a great job, but Fox wasn't buying. Instead they went with Sliders, a program that went nowhere.

It came at a great time for Doctor Who Theater back in the mid-1990s when it aired. People were very excited, and with the theme playing and the TARDIS whirling down the time vortex toward me in the opening, it was one of he happiest moments for me in that decade. It was warm weather, and when a clock chimed nine in the show the main church clock across the street from me chimed nine at the same moment -- really uncanny. I remember Cleopatra screaming and people gasping when it played.

Jacob and I took it a bit differently this time, but it was way fun nevertheless. It has some of the best lines from Doctor Who history as well as some of the worst ("Great, I finally find the right guy and he's from another planet"). We get our first real Doctor Who kiss, paving the way for future kisses that will not upset us quite as much. Paul McGann's Doctor became a mainstay in a huge number of books published after this program aired. In those books he grew and developed and became one of my true favorites.

This episode kept the DW love alive until it could burst back into existence in 2004. That is what is important about it. We celebrated that, for sure.