By Nani Lawrence
Before I dive into this opinion piece, just let me say I’m a certain kind of viewer. When I watch something on TV or Netflix, my aim is to enjoy it. Mainly, I’m not much of a thinker. If anything, I’m a ‘feeler.’ Especially, I think, with Doctor Who, I want to feel his alien pseudo-humanity.
One of my favorite episodes I absolutely had to re-watch before Netflix (and every other streaming service) took down all seasons of Doctor Who is probably one of every fan’s favorites: “Vincent and The Doctor.” Not only am I a huge fan of art—painting in particular—and of Van Gogh, but the very last scene in which Amy and the Doctor hope that showing Van Gogh how beloved he is in their time will extend his short life is fantastic to me. That moment and the Doctor’s comment that even though they didn’t save him, they were still important “good things” chokes me up every single time. That alien is more human than many humans I know.
Having said all that, I am pretty happy that Steven Moffat is leaving. I really do appreciate many of the episodes he wrote for. “Blink” and “Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead” are also some favorite episodes of mine. Since he took over as head writer, though, I just cannot follow a single thing.
In groups online full of fellow fans, it seems my opinion is in the minority. People actually like trying to guess what kind of alien-science is at play.
More power to them.
Every time I try to guess, even at times based on past episodes, I’m wrong. Sure, it keeps it interesting, but it really doesn’t keep the show consistent.
Even story arcs didn’t exactly stay consistent. The biggest example that gives me hope while at the same time I’m pretty sure won’t hold up is “River.” When we first meet her in “Silence in the Library,” the Doctor’s and her timelines have reversed. River dies the first time Ten meets her.
In the most recent episode, Twelve sees her for what he says should be the last time. However, River knows him and in fact gripes about how he abandoned her. Is it all because of that diary she carries? It definitely didn’t seem so to me with her very raw emotions (I love Alex Kingston’s acting abilities).
These are both episodes Moffat was deeply involved with!
Please tell me I’m not the only one troubled by this.
I guess it’s someone else’s job to write their way out of this one now.
It almost seemed as if Moffat was trying to force Doctor Who to be cool, which is ridiculous because the fans always did and probably always will think it’s cool. He took over for season five. I absolutely loved Matt Smith’s Doctor, especially with Amy, and even more so for me with Rory.
I really enjoyed the episodes with James Corden as Craig. From season five to now seems to have changed quite a bit, though. The show feels more modern and a bit gimmicky. Gone are the days of more simplistic storylines and more down-to-Earth production quality. I wouldn’t mind getting back to that.
I have no idea who this new head writer is, beyond his involvement, somehow, with Broadchurch. I just hope Chris Chibnall—with his fresh eye and an entire year—is more consistent and can craft better stories and better-developed characters. I think we fans deserve at least that.