I hate to harsh anyone’s squee, but…

I hate to harsh anyone's squee, but...

The Doctor Who season finale was just as mediocre and disappointing as the rest of the season. I don’t know what the hell everyone else is so happy about, except perhaps Steven Moffet’s lackluster turn as head writer has somehow lowered everyone’s bar and they were happy to see anything resembling a moving bit of drama. Cut for spoilers, unfortunately too late for many… sorry. :(

Yes, that last scene at the wedding was the kind of moment that’s supposed to make your heart swell along with the music, but at that point I was just so done with everything about that episode that I found myself kind of bored. I feel like Moffet wanted to capture the essence of the Doctor’s previous sacrifices for the common good, like when he ended the time war by essentially destroying almost everything he loved along with almost everything he hated. But there comes a point where that meme gets old. And since we know there will be no real and lasting consequences, it ends up not mattering in the least.

And to top it off, we don’t even get to know who was pulling the strings. I mean, we have an idea, but I like it better when I know.

Also: leave the fucking Daleks alone, Moffet. Jesus.

Comments

  1. says

    I don’t mean to pedantic, but it’s Moffat, with an “a”.

    I disagree with your assessment. I think the sacrifice he makes isn’t tinged with the same sort of angst and emo that his previous New Who sacrifices have been. Matt Smith (and Moffat) play it low key, with the Doctor understanding that he’s the only person who can pilot the Pandorica into the heart of the sun.

    As for no lasting consequences, the Doctor’s removal from time (and his appearance at the wedding) I thought was cleverly seeded throughout the season.

    I acknowledge that episode is all about the reset switch – bringing Amy, Rory and the Universe back to the way they were – but it’s done, IMHO, with lots of cleverness.

    We’ll find out whose pulling the strings next season. It’s the first New Who multi-season arc.

  2. says

    Hey Tempest, this post has spoilers for a show that not everyone watches immediately, and its not cut here, nor on your syndicated feed over on Dreamwidth. Could you… not, next time?

  3. says

    I personally haven’t seen it yet (was spoiled before, anyway), but…I am so tired of the Moff As The Second Coming concept, and I am so glad not to be alone.

    DW’s good, not great, and if I have to see any more bleeding posts or tweets about how The Big Bang was the MOST BEAUTIFUL THING EVAR, I am not liable for my actions.

  4. confluence says

    I’ve been pretty disappointed by this season. I feel like I’m watching a remake of the first four New Who series (which actually seems to be the BBC’s intention). It’s particularly annoying when Moffat redoes *his own New Who episodes*, badly.

    Smith doesn’t chew the scenery, and I quite like him as the Doctor, but there is no originality or emotional subtlety in the dialogue or the plotting. Everything is spelled out; dead horses are flogged repeatedly; the characters and situations are boring and cliched.

    There hasn’t been as much throw-in-the-kitchen-sink incoherence as during the RTD era, but that’s about the nicest thing I have to say.

    The episodes I liked the most were the first half of the Siluran two-parter and The Pandorica Opens, because in both cases it looked like something interesting was actually going to happen. But then it didn’t. :(

  5. says

    I’m the complete opposite. I think Vincent and the Doctor was one of the best episodes of the series since it returned in 2005.

    I think that the Lodger is the best thing Gareth Roberts has written for New Who (and is very different to his previous two stories).

    Amy’s Choice is wonderful (and very different, again, to what we’ve seen before).

    Vampires of Venice is the standard run around, but has the best opening scene EVAH and a really good villian.

    And I thought that most of Moffat’s output was good to fantastic. Eleventh Hour and Beast Below is him experimenting with a different type of writing (the light and frothy season opener and the bizarro high SF concept of the second episode).

    I thought the Angels two-parter was genuinely gripping TV and I did love the timey wimey complexity of the final two episodes.

    For me the let downs were Victory of the Daleks and the Silurian two-parter. The Silurian two-parter was definitely a retread and felt like we’d seen it all before. Victory of the Daleks tries desperately to do something different but falls on its face.

    Still, aside from budget cuts, I really thought thi season benefited from tighter plotting (though there were still plot holes, just not as gaping as we often saw in the RTD era), an arc that was more than just a few key words scattered across the season and the end of the emo and angsty Doctor.

    Mondy

  6. says

    Honestly, part 1 was better than part 2, because it set up so much delicious emotional baggage for all the characters to play with, which was all flushed down the toilet when the Magical Red Reset Button was pushed in part 2. *sigh* Rory should have stayed plastic, Amy should have stayed dead, River should have had to start from scratch with the Doctor.

  7. says

    I knew the reset wasn’t going to stick, except in that all the good things you’d want for the characters would still stay. It’s pretty much the same note from the end of season 3. The whole year of evil didn’t happen, except Martha and her family remember it all. At least with that ending the emotional consequences weren’t wiped away, which I was afraid of, and Martha got to keep the shreds of heroism she gained there (even though the way in which she gets to be the heroine is silly bullshit).

    Here nothing is real or lasting except the good parts.

    everything about this season was a sad retread of what came before but less emotionally fulfilling.

  8. says

    I disagree, Ian. Amy’s Choice was really annoying to me because it all hinged on Amy having to choose between two men, and I’ve seen that story before. In the New Who, no less. Plus the “which of these realities is a dream/real” has been done to death across several different SF/Fantasy shows.

    the opening scene of Vampires in Venice wasn’t very enjoyable for me because I am really tired of the “Girl has boyfriend, girl travels with Doctor, girl gets bored of boyfriend, boyfriend gets jealous of Doctor, Doctor tries to fix it but is too clueless to truly do so” story because: 1 – we did this with Rose and Mickey; 2 – it reduces Amy by making her relationship all about sex and attraction. Why can’t women just want to travel witht he Doctor because it’s OMG!Awesome? Why must there be romance? Ugh.

    The Angel’s two-parter started off okay but ended weak and the middle was just a bunch of waiting around until we got to the end. Boring.

    The Beast Below is retread of ideas we’ve already explored in New Who, Eleventh Hour was a bunch of cheap emotional manipulation that only sorta paid off at the end of the series, and Moffat didn’t wow me even once this season.

  9. says

    Yeah, I knew the moment I saw Amy alive inside the Pandorica that everything was going to be magically reset to the happy place. But it didn’t keep me from wishing that it wouldn’t turn out that way. And what’s with the neglected promise that Rory would go batty over the 2,000-year wait? *sigh* Moffat used to be so much better at meaningful angst. I’m this close to letting myself be driven back into the world of fanfic writing.

  10. Saira Aly says

    I don’t disagree that this season wasn’t great, but it’s so so so much better than the utter crap that was S4. The fact that they went a whole season without humiliating or violating the companion is a big win right there, and greatly increased my enjoyment of the show.

  11. says

    they went a whole season without humiliating or violating the companion

    That’s really a matter of perspective–see, for example, the end of ‘Flesh and Stone’.

  12. says

    I waited till I had finished watching this season to read your post, but now I can’t say I would have been spoiled anyway.

    There was a lot of “Rah! Rah! Moffat will save DW!” cheering that was going on throughout the season. Trouble is, I thought quite a few eps of Moffat’s season reminded me of RTD’s DW, and of old school DW–in the end, the new stuff was just in little bits and pieces, mostly the repartee with River Song and er… I can’t think what else. The arc plotting was great though, if illogical in places; The biggest problem for me is that the characters left me cold. A lot of people hated RTD/Tennant’s emo!doc, but damn if Tennant (and let’s admit it, RTD) couldn’t make you cry–and the Moff kinda lost me at the beginning of the season when it was clear Eleven’s memories and emotions both were completely cut off from Nine and Ten’s… and he had become a children’s show character. But that’s what Moffat keeps reminding us, hey.

  13. Momsomniac says

    Haven’t seen the Season Finale yet (dang it – and I read all the comments too).

    While I am enjoying the show – in general – I don’t think it holds a candle to any of the episodes with David Tennant – but then, what could? I sure wouldn’t want to follow that act.

    I also find the character of Amy Pond to be – wearrisome (is that a word?). I liked that Martha Jones was badass and in the ned said “screw this; I am not spending anymore time pining for you”. Donna Noble was AWESOME, in many ways, due to the LACK of Doctor lust. And Amy Pond? Well, she shouts a lot.