Thursday, September 1, 2011

An Apple a Day Keeps The...

Morning all,

There's no proper blog today due to work commitments. We pick up tomorrow with 'Terminus', which I don't think I've watched again for years.

In the meantime new Doctor Who hit our screens on Saturday with 'Let's Kill Hitler', which I enjoyed even if it seemed to throw everything - including the kitchen sink - at us in 45 minutes. However more of the River Song story is revealed.

Once again though I kind of ache for a smaller scale story. Something a little less rushed & a little more intimate. Perhaps I'm just getting old. Perhaps it is the effect of watching Peter Davison stories.

As I work my way through the 'Classic' Doctor Who run I'm enjoying re-discovering stories that I've forgotten. Peter Davison in particular suffers from this. I was starting to go off Doctor Who towards this point & the era tends to slip through the net. I'm actually finding Davison's portrayal pretty interesting. He's certainly the template for the 'New Who' Doctor in my opinion (even if Matt Smith seems most influenced by Patrick Troughton).

I've been scoring the stories as I go out of ten. It's an incredibly arbitrary scoring system, which I would find hard to logically explain but in the words of the Doctor himself: " only a way of proving yourself wrong with authority."

A bizarre side-effect of my Doctor Who quest-marathon-journey thing is that it has reawakened my general interest in science-fiction. I've started reading 'classic' science-fiction books again & picking up on recommendations from friends for newer stuff: China Mieville & Lauren Beukes (to name two of the top of my head). Further recommendations appriciated. So far I've read & enjoyed Alfred Bester's 'The Star's My Destination' (which is an incredible book btw if you haven't already read it); Hothouse by Brian Aldiss; Roadside Picnic by Boris & Arkady Strugatsky & Neuromancer by William Gibson (which I had read before but decided to read again).

I also read my first Neil Gaiman book, 'American Gods'. That I'll put down to enjoying 'The Doctor's Wife' so much. It's a brilliant book & I read somewhere that Gaiman is going to write an adaptation for HBO. I look forward to that.

The interesting thing about all this science-fiction reading is that it does raise interesting questions about how much of a science-fiction series Doctor Who actually is. Yes, it's got time travel & an alien at its centre but how often did (does) the series deal with hard science-fiction. Is it more of a fairy tale - as the Moff has suggested? Is it an adventure story with a science-fiction gloss? Would it be more or less successful as a hard science-fiction series.

I do know that even if it isn't a 'proper' science-fiction series it opened the door to science-fiction to me as a child (and again now), which can only be a good thing.

Anyway enough rambling.

The Patient Centurion returns tomorrow in 'Terminus'.

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