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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Entertainment & Interests > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Doctor Who

Doctor Who "Bigger on the inside..."

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Old August 7 2013, 04:31 AM   #46
Mr Light
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

I liked Sarah Jane Adventures, and I enjoyed it more than Torchwood (except for Children of Earth).
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Old August 7 2013, 05:02 AM   #47
Allyn Gibson
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

I'm going to go against the grain and state that I really enjoy the first season of Torchwood.

Oh, don't get me wrong. It's flawed as heck. There's some mind-bogglingly stupid storytelling in there. And the series confuses sex with maturity and, as a result, ends up being rather immature.

But underneath, there's actually something very compelling. The first series of Torchwood who are raging against the oblivion of human existence and who are desperately trying to feel something in an uncaring universe. The team is a group of damaged nihilists, ranging from Jack who longs for oblivion to Gwen who has an anchor in the world but becomes unmoored.

It doesn't always work, and the final episode of the first season has problems because Chibnall isn't sure how to end it. But when it does work, it works well and is compelling and moving.

I think of Torchwood series 1-3 Jack as the real Jack Harkness. I pretend the "End of Time" Jack doesn't exist.
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Old August 7 2013, 06:59 AM   #48
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
I think of Torchwood series 1-3 Jack as the real Jack Harkness. I pretend the "End of Time" Jack doesn't exist.
What's wrong with Jack's 30 seconds in The End of Time. It's obviously not long after Ianto's death and he leaves Earth, and the dying Doctor gets him to flirt with Alonso.

Or did you mean Jack in Miracle Day?
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Old August 7 2013, 08:46 AM   #49
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

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As an adult drama, Torchwood was broken, incompetent and subpar. As a children's show, SJA was so far above average it's insane.
Sums it up quite nicely.

In many ways SJA is about as close as we'll ever get to classic Who (25 minute episodes, cliffhangers every week etc) and it dealt with some hefty stuff for a "kids" show; race, homelessness etc.
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Old August 7 2013, 11:13 AM   #50
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

AllStarEntprise wrote: View Post
SJA>> Torchwood. I loved that show. I think what made SJA work so well is it's kept the soul of what made Doctor Who so fun. Only it was packaged for children. Torchwood rejected what made Doctor Who charming and instead relied on things that adults would find "appealing". Things like graphic violence, sex, gay relationships, curse words and such. Torchwood kept the alien of the week plot for the first two seasons mostly.

Admittedly I always like Maria over Rani.
I think that's what made Torchwood great. Now admittedly, it probably did try and pack some of that in to try and state it's for adults only, but that just appeals to me. I found SJA to tame for my liking.

I have to agree with you about Maria.
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Old August 7 2013, 11:24 AM   #51
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

I couldn't get through it. I think I stopped watching 3 or 4 eps from the end. I certainly didn't see the final episode. Children of Earth, however, was award-winning stuff as far as I was concerned.
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Old August 7 2013, 11:44 AM   #52
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

TJ Sinclair wrote: View Post
What's wrong with Jack's 30 seconds in The End of Time. It's obviously not long after Ianto's death and he leaves Earth, and the dying Doctor gets him to flirt with Alonso.
After Torchwood season 1, I've always felt that Doctor Who got Jack "wrong." That Doctor Who stripped him of his angst and treated him less realistically.

Tonally, the Jack of "End of Time" doesn't match the Jack of Children of Earth. He's a man who had just lost everything, and it doesn't work for me when next we see him.
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Old August 7 2013, 11:56 AM   #53
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
TJ Sinclair wrote: View Post
What's wrong with Jack's 30 seconds in The End of Time. It's obviously not long after Ianto's death and he leaves Earth, and the dying Doctor gets him to flirt with Alonso.
After Torchwood season 1, I've always felt that Doctor Who got Jack "wrong." That Doctor Who stripped him of his angst and treated him less realistically.

Tonally, the Jack of "End of Time" doesn't match the Jack of Children of Earth. He's a man who had just lost everything, and it doesn't work for me when next we see him.
Yeah, though it does seem to fit in with RTD's general story resolusion when dealing with loss.

Rose: Dad died? Don't worry just get his alt universe counterpart, never mind that he'll be a completely different bloke.

Rose: Can't have the man of your dreams? Have a clone.

Donna: Lost everything you'd become and returned to a selfish former self? Ah well have lots of money, that'll make it all right.

Jack: Sacrificed your grandson? Why not have a shag, that'll make you feel better!

Sarah Jane: sacrificed your chances of a family life? Have you considered adopting a space clone baby?

Nobody in RTD's world ever comes to terms with their loss and moves on. I've always thought it was a lousy example to set to kids, in particular in regard to Donna.
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Old August 7 2013, 12:21 PM   #54
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

Starkers wrote: View Post
Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
TJ Sinclair wrote: View Post
What's wrong with Jack's 30 seconds in The End of Time. It's obviously not long after Ianto's death and he leaves Earth, and the dying Doctor gets him to flirt with Alonso.
After Torchwood season 1, I've always felt that Doctor Who got Jack "wrong." That Doctor Who stripped him of his angst and treated him less realistically.

Tonally, the Jack of "End of Time" doesn't match the Jack of Children of Earth. He's a man who had just lost everything, and it doesn't work for me when next we see him.
Yeah, though it does seem to fit in with RTD's general story resolusion when dealing with loss.

Rose: Dad died? Don't worry just get his alt universe counterpart, never mind that he'll be a completely different bloke.

Rose: Can't have the man of your dreams? Have a clone.

Donna: Lost everything you'd become and returned to a selfish former self? Ah well have lots of money, that'll make it all right.

Jack: Sacrificed your grandson? Why not have a shag, that'll make you feel better!

Sarah Jane: sacrificed your chances of a family life? Have you considered adopting a space clone baby?

Nobody in RTD's world ever comes to terms with their loss and moves on. I've always thought it was a lousy example to set to kids, in particular in regard to Donna.
Okay, I can't disagree with you on that.

Although Sarah Jane adopting a space clone actually made sense. And the money would have helped Dona get over it. But other than that, yeah.
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Old August 7 2013, 06:46 PM   #55
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

In my opinion one of the biggest faults with MD was that it couldn't support a 10 part story, at times it felt as if the story was padded out. Now if it had been a 5-parter like CoE it might have worked better.
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Old August 7 2013, 08:01 PM   #56
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

All of Torchwood was absolutely wretched EXCEPT for Children of Earth.

Miracle Day was the nasty cream of the putrid crop. Utterly loathed it.
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Old August 7 2013, 11:49 PM   #57
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

o the next question to ask did the invovlment of Starz have an impact on it? Would the BBC still have made MD without that involvment? Possible but I suspect it would have been 5 episodes maybe stripped daily like they did with CoE.
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Old August 8 2013, 04:08 PM   #58
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

Miracle Day was a glorious train wreck.
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Old August 8 2013, 07:29 PM   #59
Nagisa Furukawa
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
After Torchwood season 1, I've always felt that Doctor Who got Jack "wrong." That Doctor Who stripped him of his angst and treated him less realistically.
Interesting, cause IMO after New Who Season 1, I've always felt that TW and DW have gotten Jack "wrong." In Season 1, he's the straight forward James Bond of the Future, the flashy, charismatic, gunslinging pretty boy from another time, somewhere between the Doctor, advanced enough to share technobabble and exposition with him, and Rose, as after all they are both human companions at the end of the day.

There was a little darkness or angst in him (the fact that he was a con man, his missing two years), but unfortunately, Torchwood didn't decide to follow that line of character at all and instead just turned Jack into Angel to get protagonist angst, an aggressive immortal who broods about it but occasionally has a sense of humor. And honestly, it's way out of John Barrowman's acting range. Have him be flirty? He can do that. Have him portray the anguish of living hundreds of years while watching loved ones die around you? He just can't pull it off and it's made Jack in every appearance since TW S1 an awkward, schizophrenic mix of John Barrowman-as-John Barrowman flirting with blue girls or James Marsters and then immediately do some kind of cold hearted, for-the-greater-good action and look stoic.

I really enjoyed him in The Empty Child through The Parting of the Ways, but I have no desire to see Captain Jack again because since then, he's just become a convoluted, overly complicated (so tired of "What secret was in Jack's past THIS time..." every TW season), all-over-the-place mess of a character.
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Old August 8 2013, 08:22 PM   #60
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Re: How do you feel about Torchwood Miracle Day

That said, I agree with this 100%:

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
The problem, as I see it, is that RTD didn't understand why Children of Earth worked, so when he was asked to do something like CoE but bigger, he didn't know how to do it.

From the little that The Writer's Tale (second edition) covers the writing of Children of Earth, it's clear that CoE was a happy accident that worked in spite of RTD (who didn't have a clear vision of what he wanted to do and didn't understand how the story would work) and not because of him. Which is kind of ironic, in that I believe that CoE is the best thing RTD ever did in the Whoniverse and outclasses anything he did on the mothership.

So I think with Miracle Day he was trying to emulate CoE's success without understanding why it was successful.
A LOT of people here and elsewhere have said the primary problem is 10 eps instead of 5 and it would've been a great story if only shortened. No, I can't agree with that at all. Miracle Day was rotten to the core for precisely the reason said above. There WAS a lot of filler, of course, but that's a superficial, surface issue; this wasn't a Dance with Dragons situation where filler is the problem in a book otherwise incredible. At the end of the day, 10 eps or 5, it still ends with Jack's blood going into a giant vagina and the villains not explained at all, but given a "Bwahaha, next time'll be even more epic" cliffhanger.

No, as Allyn said, the number one problem was that RTD didn't know why CoE had such an effect on people. To someone like me, it's clear what made CoE special was from about the middle of Episode 3 on, when the story becomes about hard moral issues being placed upon us in every day life. This is almost completely ignored in Miracle Day where everyone who works at the cremation centers are would-be rapists or cackling as they make joins about burning Gwen's dad, and the decision to include a child murderer as main character (a very interesting choice) is done as blandly and predictably as possible with him pretending to repent in public then meeting with Jack in private and talking about how he's gonna play this town like a harp from hell Penguin-style or something.

RTD must've thought it was CoE Episode 2/early Ep 3 stuff, where it's all about the government hunting down Torchwood on the run and decided that's primarily what MD would be, and that's what needed to be replicated. But even that wouldn't have been so bad if they had pulled it off more competently, but Miracle Day's attempts to do so just felt like a really flaccid, untense version of 24, made by people who had no idea how to do a convincing political thriller so you just get a lot of political thriller cliches ("Actually, the secret thing you need to know is-" *gets shot*) mixed in with the things they've done elsewhere and better. The villains are an attempt to be a powerful, shadowy cabal, itself a cliche, but one so vaguely and cryptically explained (and then ultimately not explained or dealt with at all) that there's no actual menace to them, as opposed to the all too human Prime Minister from CoE or genuinely alien motivations of the 456. The whole thing just reeks of incompetence and ineptitude.

The concept of a world without death is an interesting enough premise to sustain years worth of stories in any number of medium. But RTD and Jane Espensen trying to emulate 24 was never going to be a great version of that story, not in ten episodes, not in five.
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