It seems a bit odd to start reviewing a series towards the end of its run, but I just started this blog. It’s my blog. DEAL WITH IT.
It was my fault, really. I should never have heaped on the ridiculous levels of expectation for this episode but, an entire episode set in the depths of the TARDIS, the most iconic and wonderous ship in all of science fiction? The only episodes I were looking forward to more were the 50th special and the Neil Gaiman Cyberman episode.
Alas, I think this episode was always going to dissapoint me in some way. It doesn’t help that the supporting cast were three planks of extra bland bland wood from bland and son. One dickhead and two likeable guys I can deal with. Three dickheads is just boring. They were my main peeve with the episode and why I had to get that out of the way upfront.
So basically, we’re trapped inside the TARDIS for a good 45 minutes with three annoying tits and The Doctor and Clara who were, as always, nothing short of brilliant so there isn’t much point in going into that. The main character in this episode was really, the TARDIS.
It’s probably just because I’ve been a fan my entire life that I felt a little short changed by the repetive corridors and very brief glimpses at other rooms. That library was pretty cool and it would have been nice to spend a little more time in places like that. On that note, if The Doctor is the only survivor of the Time War, who wrote that book on the Time War Clara found? The only reason I struggle to believe it was The Doctor is because his name was in it. Why would he write his name in a book if he is so scared of anyone finding it out?
Moving on, it would have been nice to maybe see a past console room or two, but this is all just fan greed. The Eye of Harmony looked fantastic, as did the center of the TARDIS and the creepy lava monsters. Even if the latters’ explanation was a little underwhelming.
There were some cool nostalgic touches such as hearing companions and Doctors past talking about the TARDIS, as well as the Doctor’s cot and Amy Ponds little TARDIS model. Bless.
Overall it’s a little infuriating how all the secrets are brought out and let put back neatly away by a plot reset button. I usually don’t mind time rewinds or such things but at the expense of any plot development? Bah. At the end of the day it was a decent enough episode but just failed to deliver on the promise of its concept and failed to deliver any real breakthroughs for the TARDIS crew. A missed oppurtinity in my book.
Then again, even on its worse day, Doctor Who is still the best thing on television so what do I know?
So by now we all know that David Tennant and Billie Piper are coming back for the half century bash, along with the bloody Zygons (which I will never get bored of telling people) and the good old Brigadier’s Daughter. I for one, don’t believe we’ve had half the news and so here are ten more things that need to happen. I’m a greedy fan. Sue me.
Oh, he’s said he isn’t taking part… I don’t care. The 9th Doctor is the reason Doctor Who is back on our tellies and so popular. He was dark, funny and genuinely scary at times and one season was nowhere near enough of him frankly. Kidnap his family, buy him his own island. I don’t care, just get the bloody 9th Doctor back for this.
I think they’ve become slightly overused of late, but it wouldn’t be the 50th without an appearance from the shows first and most iconic monsters. They don’t have to drive the entire plot either, just a Five Doctors style ten minute scene would do. Provided it doesn’t involve The Doctor tricking it into firing at a mirror. Jesus.
Because Ace was fucking brilliant, I don’t care what anyone else says.
For my money, one of the best Doctors. That he only got one shot to play The Doctor on screen is criminal. If there was ever a chance for the 8th Doctor to get some more (well deserved) screen time, for the love of God, this is it. Of course, it helps that his Doctor was given a new look a year or so back and that he recently refused to rule out appearing…
Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. If nothing else, it would be a nice tribute for the late, great Liz Sladen who we all know is going to be sorely missed in this very special episode that she should have (and I imagine would have) been a part of.
The Original Theme Music
Because screw looking to the future. I want the ethereal, simple and beautifully haunting 1963 score over the top of today’s magnificent CGI opening sequence. That, or the McCoy era theme. I always loved that one. I think I have a problem.
References a Plenty.
It’s been 50 years. I want Jelly Babies, long scarfs, cricket bats, Kamelion, the Eye of Harmony, Susan, Pease Pottage, Mike Yates, question mark lapels. Hell, name drop Adric. I’ll take it all. I am a reference whore.
The First Three Doctors
I know they’re all dead. However, they need to be included or acknowledged in some way, be it past footage or studio tomfoolery or whatever. If not Two and Three then at the very least William Hartnell needs some love as the man who started a fifty year and eleven man legacy.
A Decent Story
The Five Doctors was great, but if we look at it critically.. it wasn’t. A handful of characters were relegated to sitting around the TARDIS and we actually had to watch that when we all wanted to see how the actually action was moving along. Don’t get me wrong, I love The Five Doctors. But I want the 50th story to be a classic in its own right.
ALL THE DOCTORS
I know I’ve covered some already, but there you go. I love David Tennant and I am thrilled he’s coming back. But the way I see it, we have them all back or we have none of them back. I don’t think the fans give a shit if they don’t look how they used to. That’s been written away in the past. If it was ever going to be done and completely justified, it would be this extraordinary time in Who’s life. The Eleven Doctors. Make it happen, Moffat.
Deep breath, everyone, I’m about to share a secret with you. Band’s change their sound. I honestly don’t see the point of judging an album on anything other than its own merits and faults. Is Fall Out Boy’s long awaited (well, by some) comeback album the sort of fast paced pop punkery of debut Take This to Your Grave or does it lean more towards the introspective ballads of Folie a Deux?
Truth is, it shouldn’t matter. Music will always be subjective, as surely as this review is by no means a definitive account of the quality of Save Rock and Roll. Are Fall Out Boy as good as they used to be? You might as well ask if Fall Out Boy were ever good. So let’s try our best to not compare a band that has grown during their four year hiatus to the teenage emo heart throbs they once were. Glad we got that out of the way.
Save Rock and Roll is probably the best pop album to have come out in a long old time (pause while teenage girls everywhere take to the internet to rant about how “FOB will never be pop”). Of course, claiming this doesn’t say much considering the current standard of pop music. If you look up to Nicki Minaj, you are probably brain damaged. I know I pretty much just made a case for subjectivity in music, but there are no two ways where she is concerned. Sorry.
For the most part, the album is fast, catchy and fun. Fall Out Boy haven’t lost their ear for a hook, with the funky dance bassline of Where Did the Party Go, the infectious sing along vibe of Young Volcanoes and the fantastic riff from Death Valley, the last of which incidentally, contains a very brief Dubstep breakdown. Spoiler alert, it actually works.
There are places where the album falls flat. Rat a Tat is a song I cannot for the life of me get through for the sole reason that hearing Courtney Love pronounce “it’s Courtney, bitch” makes me want to gouge my eyes out with a rusty fork and lie down to die. (A shame, since that song is pretty great otherwise).
Alone Together is a little too Backstreet Boys for my taste and title track Save Rock and Roll kind of kills itself by using an awful altered sample of one of the band’s early songs Chicago is so Two Years ago. For the entire album, the band seems to power through with such confidence and gusto, that such a call back seems out of place.
Save Rock and Roll is by no means a great album. It took me a few listens to consider it as anything more than just quite good. But at the end of the day, the way Fall Out Boy have kicked down the door and released something this different is something I can respect. I can only imagine where they’ll go next, but by all accounts, Fall Out Boy seem to be sure of a bright future.