Discussion in 'Doctor Who' started by Samurai8472, Jan 22, 2013.
Ensemble cast, spectacular creatures, humour, a bit of sentiment. All top-notch quality.
Honestly, if they stayed consistent with a new season every spring, beginning Easter weekend every year plus a Christmas special, that would satisfy me regardless of episode count. Basically, what they were doing from 2005-2011.
^^ Yeah, I really think it's the lack of consistency that is the problem, not the number of episodes.
^And that's exactly what they want everyone to think when the series length goes down.
If they do go ahead with this idea of making it a BBC America co-production, I can only imagine the episode count going up compared to the half seasons of this year and last. BBC America could put money directly into the series rather than having to pretend to not play favorites like the BBC does, or even fund it (series or individual episodes/specials) entirely, should the need arise.
I'm not criticizing Doctor Who for being a lighter show than Game of Thrones. I'm not criticizing Doctor Who at all. My point is that Game of Thrones goes for a more epic scope with its episode structure while Doctor Who's episodes, well, don't. It takes a hell of a lot more work to produce one episode of Game of Thrones than it does Doctor Who, so audiences accept the shorter run time. Doctor Who has no such excuse.
I wouldn't go quite that far, but Game of Thrones, with its enormous scope, certainly has a much larger budget requirement so the 10 episode seasons can be justified because of the cost to do any more. Because of the nature of the show they can't get away with a couple of sets on a sound stage for some inexpensive filler episodes like Doctor Who often can. Has nothing to do with how much work goes into it though.
More accurate to say that Doctor Who is a comparatively inexpensive series to produce, with a comparatively easier schedule for the cast and crew. That seems to be true in general for BBC productions though. American productions are insanely grueling at times in the name of getting the best bang out of those much higher budgets.
It's always been epic. Season 20 didn't cost shit but there was Arc of Infinity, Snakedance, Mawdryn Undead etc.
We are watching for the content, right?
Not that they don't fly all around world these days to make the episodes and build tons of sets like the new Tardis set and special effects like the new Cybermen.
Bringing up 30 year old episodes may not be the best strategy in this particular debate.
You do realize that Arc of Infinity, which you mentioned, did include location shooting in Amsterdam? And 1983 did feature a new TARDIS console. And only the previous year there was a new look for the Cybermen introduced.
Yeah I guess that wasn't really fair. I know it's way cheaper these days.
You're absolulty right, what happens in the US or any other part of the world doesn't matter.
Not directing this next comment at anyone in particualr, but it's almost amusing to see US fans critise the BBC for it's plans re: DW and how they should take them into consideration. Yet when the shoe is on the other foot and UK fans say they should be taken into consideration for US shows, the line usually trotted out is the UK doesn't matter it's a NBC/CBS etc.. show.
the DW is brand is not really being damaged, sure it's fans might annoyed by its broadcasting schedule but the same could be said of any fanbase.
Remember in the UK DW is considered main-stream. Sre it might not help it gain much momentum in the UK. But if you are a fan of the show you watch it whether it has 6 episodes a season or 30 episodes a season or any number you care to pick.
Some shows such as Sherlock only have 3 episodes a season.
I'm not sure that the two situations are comparable; the American broadcast networks in recent years aren't producing the kind of pop culture/merchandising phenomena that Doctor Who is. The American programs that are the pop culture/merchandise engines are programs on the cable networks with small, cult audiences -- in other words, the same kind of audience Doctor Who draws in the US.
To the extent that any content producer cares about audiences outside their native territory, it's in the overseas sales they get for selling the show to a foreign network and in the licensing and merchandise sales they get from that territory. If BBC America is still willing to pay for the program (which they are) and if American punters are still willing to buy Doctor Who merchandise (which they are), then that's all the BBC (specifically Worldwide) should and will care about.
It seems UK fans are more tolerant of the long gaps... a gap like that did permanent damage to Lost's ratings, wehich was quite a mainstream hit for a while, and it helped kill off shows like Flashforward and V...
It surprises me this hasn't sent shockwaves through the online fandom. I'd have assumed people would be wary of any indication the series is winding down production somewhat. UK fans complained bitterly when the original show was cut down from 26 episodes per annum to 14 in the late 1980s, and we all know that was because it was on its last legs. Is there anybody out there in internet-land decrying this as the first step towards the (second) cancellation of Doctor Who?
Not a chance of cancellation unless someone at the BBC specifically desires cancellation over success. The brand is as popular as it has ever been and the show is finding new audiences worldwide. BBC America is seeing their best ratings ever with recent Doctor Who even with an inability to advertise it properly the last couple years because of the constantly shifting schedule and air dates held back by BBC until what is pretty much last minute. If they had some measure of control over when they air it, how often, etc. by holding the purse strings you could be sure there would be a much more regular flow and an ability to advertise it every year to bring in even more viewers. There is no way the BBC would just throw the whole thing away for no reason (again, unless someone there is just spiteful towards Doctor Who) when you have other channels eager and able to pay for the show to stay in production.
True, but couldn't the same said be about say Star Trek? As long as the overseas TV stations where willing to buy the rights to air it, and Paramount could still make money from merchandising sales in those countries why not continue to make it? Even the last Trek show was pulling in the region of ~0.5-0.7m in the UK on a subscription only channel (which would be in the region of what 2.2-3m viewers in the US when you account for population differnces between the UK and the US).
But money talks, I doubt Paramount was losing money on ST, UPN might have been however.
And others have mentioned in the UK we are used to long gaps between new episodes. Before the TV stations got wise and started to air shows closer to the US airdate, we in the UK could easily wait six months+ between new episodes of US shows. True we would then have a complete season without a break. But when you are used to 6-13 episodes seasons, you get used to the fact that for 75% or so of the year you'll be waiting for new episodes.
I'd rather have 6-13 episodes of decent television than 22 episodes of average television.
Look at the recent TW: MD it seems as if their was enough story to do a decent 5 part series, but with Starz it looks like it was padded out to 10 episodes of mediocre TV.
Even during the Davison era they were producing 28 eps. per year but the show was doubled up during the run to last a mere 14 weeks. I think it was more a case of the BBC shortening the run of all of their shows in order to provide even more programming.
Remember DW has a regular cast of 2-3, who are in the majorit of the scenes, when you have a cast of 7. You can spread screen time around more. So you can be filming two differenct scenes you two groups of actors at once. If your principals are in almost every seen you can't do that.
That may be true, but, it's also true a 12+ hour day for an American TV Actor is quite common, and unheard of for British TV, so, it's not just the screen time of the actors per episode.
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