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Ecclestone was brilliant, and managed to do a lot with the character for such a short run. I was completely sold on him after Dalek, and it's his run that made me a Doctor Who fan.

 

I'm guessing these audios will have him teamed up with Billie Piper again instead of giving him a new companion, especially as she's already done a bunch of BF stuff already. There's not really much wiggle room to do anything else, unless they want to suggest he didn't look in a mirror for a year after regenerating, or something.  :D

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55 minutes ago, Mogster said:

There's not really much wiggle room to do anything else, unless they want to suggest he didn't look in a mirror for a year after regenerating, or something.  :D

 

Fwiw RTD didn’t write that line about the ears in ‘Rose’ with a recent regeneration in mind - he saw it more as something that had always bugged this Doctor every time he catches himself. Indeed, he points to the fact that the Doctor is experiencing no regeneration trauma in the episode and is utterly in charge from the start.

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9 minutes ago, Death's Head said:

 

Fwiw RTD didn’t write that line about the ears in ‘Rose’ with a recent regeneration in mind - he saw it more as something that had always bugged this Doctor every time he catches himself. Indeed, he points to the fact that the Doctor is experiencing no regeneration trauma in the episode and is utterly in charge from the start.

 

Fair point. That opens the door a bit wider in that case, although I still think we're going to see a 9th Doctor and Rose pairing to start with.

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I always assumed that RTD had begged Eccleston to do it, and he'd agreed on the condition that he would only do one series as a favour to his old mate to get it up and running, rather than stick around and be forever known as "former Doctor, Christopher Eccleston." So it's quite a revelation (to me) that he would have carried on quite happily had he not fallen out irreparably with RTD.

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2 hours ago, Mogster said:

 

Fair point. That opens the door a bit wider in that case, although I still think we're going to see a 9th Doctor and Rose pairing to start with.

 

Oh yeah, and rightly so - they make such a great team, far better than with Tennant (much as I love Tennant). That whole season, with a working class Doctor and companion just seems so radical now, I love it. And Chris just seems like a lovely man.

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19 hours ago, Nick R said:

 

Quote

When asked specifically about rumors that extras being treated poorly on set were part of the reason for his unhappiness on the show and eventual departure, Eccleston said he never saw extras in particular being treated poorly, but did speak about the traditional harshness of the entertainment industry, in particular on the crew, saying: “The crew, I felt, could have been treated better, but you often feel that. It’s a ruthless business.”
 

Speaking specifically about how a director or producer’s treatment of the crew can affect an actor’s relationship to the director, Eccleston noted: “I always looked to the director and the producer because they’re the ones with the big stick. The director, for instance, treats a member of the crew badly and then comes to speak to me about my performance, I have no respect for them and I don’t listen to them and that’s difficult.”


Lots of respect for him on reading this. I'm sure he's not alone in that regard but it's not often that you see this called out by an actor.
 

56 minutes ago, Death's Head said:

And Chris just seems like a lovely man.

 

I briefly met Eccleston just after he quit Who, while I was working in the smaller HMV near Bond Street. Considering that he appears to have been in quite a dark place at the time, he was really lovely and really down to earth. At the end of the day we were just selling CDs to him but he stood out among some of the other household names we'd served on account of how warm he was, almost as if he was going out of his way to be really friendly to us in the shop. Goes a long way when you're in that job.

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30 minutes ago, Peter St John said:

You'll can also note that Keith Boak, director of Rose / Aliens of London / World War Three (the first filming block of 2005) has never directed an episode of Who since.

 

And several scenes from Rose were remounted in later blocks with a different director.

 

There was also a whole thing with a stunt involving a burning sofa flying out of Henrik's department store. I've never read a definitive take on this but the two main narratives are either:

 

a) the director went ahead with it against the advice of H&S and put extras at risk, enraging both Chris and the producers.

b) the stunt was done but tape wasn't rolling for some reason, so huge amounts of cash was wasted.

 

Also, Phil Collinson and RTD have been frank about how out of their depth they were at the start of the shoot. The shooting schedule quickly became a tissue of lies; they were trying to make a style of programme that no-one had tried to make for years in the UK, with more episodes than the standard 6 or 8, practical effects, CGI, no standing sets bar the TARDIS etc. etc. By the end of the second day of shooting that first season they were, apparently, a fortnight behind schedule. And no doubt this was all gruelling for the crew as they tried desperately to make it work.

 

The upshot was that Phil Collinson had to keep going back to Chris and tell him that he'd need to get ready to work on different scenes to the ones they'd planned for. Which, when you're in every scene, and already working 14 hour days, can't be much fun. It's no surprise he didn't want to stay on. Of course, by the time they did the second season they knew what they were doing, but by then it was too late.

 

I also heard that Chris got on particularly well with Joe Aherne, which is why he ended up directing so many episodes that first year, as they hired him to do more so Chris would be happy. But I think they burned Joe out, which is why he never returned.

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3 hours ago, DeciderVT said:

 

I briefly met Eccleston just after he quit Who, while I was working in the smaller HMV near Bond Street. Considering that he appears to have been in quite a dark place at the time, he was really lovely and really down to earth. At the end of the day we were just selling CDs to him but he stood out among some of the other household names we'd served on account of how warm he was, almost as if he was going out of his way to be really friendly to us in the shop. Goes a long way when you're in that job.

 

and he did this

 

 

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1 hour ago, Peter St John said:

You'll can also note that Keith Boak, director of Rose / Aliens of London / World War Three (the first filming block of 2005) has never directed an episode of Who since.

 

So gutting, as I’m adamant that if Aliens of London had been given to a competent director - Euros Lyn, say - then that two parter would rightly be seen for the postmodern classic it is.

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So what is the consensus of this from Capaldi's second season onwards? I've re-watched some of Matt Smith's episodes today and originally saw Capaldi's first season, which I quite liked, but I fell away after that.

 

Now it should be noted that a) I haven't ever watched any new-Who pre-Smith (and don't really intend to either) and b) I actually liked Clara and her relationships with Smith and Capaldi and found them a bit more heartwarming than with Amy and Rory (though I liked them too) - though I recall not many in here are fans of her.


Setting that as a bit of a benchmark for what I enjoy, is the rest of the Capaldi run and beyond worth it?

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If you liked the Clara/Twelfth Doctor relationship, then I'd definitely recommend watching Capaldi's second series (9). It was a series made up almost entirely of two-parters, and it was one of the strongest series they've made. And in Heaven Sent, it contains a good contender for the single best episode since 2005.

 

I don't think series 10 was quite as strong, but it was still a good series - especially considering how tired Moffat was when working on it (it was one series more than he was expecting to do because Chibnall wasn't ready, and his mother died while he was in the middle of writing it). The only really poor bit of the series was the Steven Moffat/Peter Harness/Toby Whithouse three-parter in the middle, which started well then fell apart.

 

Bear in mind that's just based on my memories of them: I've rewatched very few of the Capaldi episodes since broadcast. The exceptions being Heaven Sent and Listen, which were among the episodes Moffat recently did Twitter commentaries on for the #LockdownWho Twitter events.

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Capaldi I took ages to warm to but love him now. Michelle Gomez is just magnificent too, so good. 

Bill was a brilliant character, he arc was fantastic and the ending.....

 

The first series with Ecclestone was so good too. Great actor. 

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They kind of soft rebooted 12’s character with his second season, he’s the cool uncle with crazy hair from that point rather than the stern grandad. I think it’s a great improvement, and I really like both his second and third seasons, despite my intense dislike of Clara. 
 

Can’t get on with 13’s era at all though. Whittaker is fine but the writing is terrible. 

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His first season had Listen though, which is one of the greats. Then there's Mummy on the Orient Express, Flatline and Dark Water. I agree that Twelve's character improves in the later seasons, but the first still has some excellent episodes.

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19 hours ago, Gabe said:

Now it should be noted that a) I haven't ever watched any new-Who pre-Smith (and don't really intend to either)

 

I'm curious as to why this is. That's five years of excellent, imaginative and just plain *fun* Doctor Who you're missing out on, and Tennant in particular is the definitive new-Who Doctor.

 

At the very least, if you're a fan of Smith then watch the Steven Moffat episodes from the previous Doctors' eras - so, that would be The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances, The Girl in the Fireplace, Blink, and Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead. They're among the very best episodes the series has ever produced, arguably better than a lot of what Moffat wrote when he was actually in charge, and I'd be astonished if you didn't enjoy them.

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1 hour ago, Garwoofoo said:

 Whittaker is fine but the writing is terrible. 

So now we are at the sixth doctor era of nu-who then? :P  It's a shame.  I didn't have any trouble with a female doctor but it could have been more.  Imagine if RTD or Moffatt or anyone else were still at the helm.  Still means I've got two more or less seasons of who still to watch at some point!

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People keep saying "Whittaker is fine" but from what I've watched, Whittaker is not actually a particularly great Doctor. She's somewhere between a Tennant and Smith homage but with a complete  lack of the underlying edge both of those had. 

 

I've only seen parts of the last few series, so perhaps there's great turns or speeches I've missed. And maybe it's the writing kneecapping her. But she's like, fine, without putting her stamp on the character at all. 

 

Also add Human Nature / Family of Blood to the list of episodes to watch. It's up there with Heaven Sent as possibly the best bit of Nu Who. 

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19 hours ago, Nick R said:

If you liked the Clara/Twelfth Doctor relationship, then I'd definitely recommend watching Capaldi's second series (9). It was a series made up almost entirely of two-parters, and it was one of the strongest series they've made. And in Heaven Sent, it contains a good contender for the single best episode since 2005.

 

I don't think series 10 was quite as strong, but it was still a good series - especially considering how tired Moffat was when working on it (it was one series more than he was expecting to do because Chibnall wasn't ready, and his mother died while he was in the middle of writing it). The only really poor bit of the series was the Steven Moffat/Peter Harness/Toby Whithouse three-parter in the middle, which started well then fell apart.

 

Bear in mind that's just based on my memories of them: I've rewatched very few of the Capaldi episodes since broadcast. The exceptions being Heaven Sent and Listen, which were among the episodes Moffat recently did Twitter commentaries on for the #LockdownWho Twitter events.


 I think series 10 is some of the best, if not the best, Who. It does indeed fluff the landing of the three party sadly, was such a great start.

 

Bill and Nardole (and Missy!) had far too short a run with 12th as the Tardis crew.

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18 minutes ago, Garwoofoo said:

 

I'm curious as to why this is. That's five years of excellent, imaginative and just plain *fun* Doctor Who you're missing out on, and Tennant in particular is the definitive new-Who Doctor.

 

At the very least, if you're a fan of Smith then watch the Steven Moffat episodes from the previous Doctors' eras - so, that would be The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances, The Girl in the Fireplace, Blink, and Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead. They're among the very best episodes the series has ever produced, arguably better than a lot of what Moffat wrote when he was actually in charge, and I'd be astonished if you didn't enjoy them.

 

The short answer is that I'm not really a fan and it was by pure chance I happened to see the last bit of The Big Bang and something about Smith's performance made an impact on me and sold me the character, even if a lot of episodes are actually a bit naff. I suppose I was more interested in Smith and his relationships with Amy/Clara than I was the lore and any overall stories and it all just hit me at the right time. Capaldi then came along and brought a different dynamic with Clara and, for that first season, I enjoyed that too.

 

I was never a fan of Billie Piper, so I probably would never get that same feeling with Tennant, however good the writing is and, with limited free time as it is, I guess that's the line in the sand I've drawn.

 

1 hour ago, Mogster said:

His first season had Listen though, which is one of the greats. Then there's Mummy on the Orient Express, Flatline and Dark Water. I agree that Twelve's character improves in the later seasons, but the first still has some excellent episodes.

 

I rewatched both of those again yesterday and they were great - again, they played into that dynamic between Clara and the Doctor. Even Kill the Moon has some great character moments and emotion flying around.

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