This season is reminding me of the Carmell Master Plan for 7.
This would be the plot where the Doctor was really one of the ancient founders of Gallifrey society or a reincarnation therof, right?
Correct. And how the Doctor was grooming (In the good way to use that term, not the bad way) Ace to be his successor/first Non-Gallifreyian Time Lord/Lady.
It's just with this latest episode, I'm getting a lot of the more esoteric story vibes from that era. And I'm not really sure how to feel about that. Making the Doctor out to be Important is a nice switch from the decade plus of the Doctor seemingly picking up the Most Important Person In All Of Creation as their companion, but I can't help but remember it was that overall story direction that ended up putting the show on hiatus.
Doctor Who is at its best when it's telling fun adventures. Emphasis on fun. My internal jury is still out as to whether or not this season is going to be that, and I worry about a plot being too cute for its own good. Part of what makes the Bad Wolf retcon-reveal work is the season leading up to it stood on its own two feet perfectly fine. Part of what made "Last of the Time Lords" so utterly appalling is it literally face planted an hour away from the finish line of probably it's most impressive and consistently fantastic stories since the show's revival (Yes even Daleks in Manhattan. I will die on that hill, it was a great play on the traditional Dalek story with the lone survivors of their species forced to deal with that fact and operate outside their usual M.O.).
What I'm ranting about overall I guess is Doctor Who feels like it's trying to justify its existence. And I get any production has to do that, but it's an established franchise with a known identity - misadventures in Time and Space, Worlds and Creation in Peril, Witty Dialogue and sometimes Scary Monsters/Situations. Jodi's run has been one of what I'd feel out of a freshman show, trying to prove it has the chops to compete with the big boys. And I really don't think that's fair to the franchise or Jodi in particular.
I don't know, maybe I'm just rambling. But paradoxically (And yes, I realize the irony of using that word in relation to the current story), this season both feels a bit too adventurous, while simultaneously feeling far too cautious. That hesitancy of really embracing the overall story for the season makes me worried they won't have the confidence to really just go for it.
The Astronaut arc during 11's run might not have been a great story all told, but at least it had the "confidence" in its own story that as a viewer you didn't question the writing staff's intentions are were willing to see it through to the end (Even if that end was the Wedding of River Song). This arc I just find myself asking if the writing staff is even comfortable with where this story is taking them.
Kind of like the Master Plan, and how Seven's run just feels like this weird split personality where they want the Doctor to be the Doctor but also more then the Doctor, and they never really dedicated the theme so much. Hence why you get the strange "Greatest Show in the Galaxy", which features a lot of hints at the Doctor combating eldritch abominations beyond the realm of space and time...through the lens of a traveling galactic circus.
Or the one where the Doctor is revealed to be Merlin in a story about literal Knights in Armor from a parallel world trying to steal a Nuke and ends with the Brigadier shooting a Demon.
And then Delta and the Bannermen. Or having The Curse of Fenric followed up by Survival, involving the Master turning into a feral Cat Person.
Story Quality bouncing all over the place. I think that's also why I'm getting that vibe from this season.
Edited by Rust, 28 January 2020 - 05:31 PM.