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FishyFish
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it could have been an intergalactic library on planet Blob.

but.. its in Cardiff again.

I've stopped watching Torchwood now. The Who might be next.

Oi, its Swansea. The series is produced by BBC Wales so its going to be filmed in Wales. They used the Gower quite a lot for the outside shots of future earth. A lot of the Xmas episode was shot in Swansea as well.

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Thats because its true. It is the best Who short story written.

I have no doubt that this is the case, it's just that the more people praise it the closer I come to buying the whole decalog just for it, at which point Moffat's episodes will be confirmed to be based on it, it'll be released everywhere for free, and I will cry.

Is it confirmed to be set in Swansea, btw? From the little I know about Continuity Errors I'm fairly confident it would be a far stronger story in present day Earth so I've got no problem with it being there, but it'd still be nice if they pretended it was in Bristol, or Glasgow, or somewhere.

Also, the orders were time sealed because otherwise the plot would have fallen apart, which in a closed time loop story is a bit more defensible than usual. I suppose you could say that the loop was far more likely to close if you denied everyone in it the neccessary information until they needed it, which frankly is a more satisfying explination to me than most of the ones down in the 'Wood.

EDIT: Yeah, that report just says where it's being filmed and not where it's actually set, as far as I can make out.

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Alien planets are going to be really hard to do well without a mega budget. I think I prefer earth based stories to dull locations like spaceships and space stations.

RTD has said that himself:

Why doesn’t the TARDIS visit more alien planets?

“It’s fascinating, this area. I get letters saying, ‘You can go to a forest, you can do this...’ Actually I’m not sure that you can... I don’t watch things like Stargate closely and I laugh when I look and they’re in the same forest again. And I’m not knocking the programme: there’s nothing else they can do. They’ve got a format where they have to go through the portal to an alien planet every week.”

“On our most expensive episodes we might get, I dunno... 200 effects. Most of them, you don’t get that many. And [visiting an alien planet] you’d eat up half those effects in normal conversation. If it’s normal dialogue with you and me talking, with something in the background, then you’ve eaten them up just intercutting, because every shot counts as an effects shot. If I was having a conversation with you on an alien planet and there’s gonna be a city in the background, and my close-up is one shot, it’s not then free to come back to my shot. It cuts to you, cuts back to me, and when you come back to me that’s a new effects shot. Every director comes in saying ‘But that’s the same effects shot! It’s Russell talking with a city behind him – we’ve done that once, we’ve established that!’ No, it’s a new effects shot because I’m moving, I’m talking, I have to be keyed in differently against green screen.

“So that’s the problem. It’s not like, ‘Oh, we’ve got a city in 3D, now we can use it ten million times.’ No, every single shot counts, and we pay a fixed price for every single shot. So you cannot sustain it for long. If they’re on an alien planet then very quickly they have to get underground, or into the city. Yes, now and again we’ve done a bit of it, and there are certain shots of alien cities and things like that, but we’re just very careful with it. We’ll do a bit. There are gonna be people talking on alien planets and you will see alien cities in the background, but it’s written so that it’s limited. You have to write around it and be careful counting every shot. Obviously, I like things related back to Earth and to humanity, but it’s very clearly a cost-cutting measure that a lot of our adventures are on Earth. I don’t ever want to sound like we’re short of money though, because we’re very well funded, very well looked after.”

Do you think that two or three years down the line it’ll be possible to do more of that kind of thing, because the technology’s developed?

“I suppose so, but you’re at the TV end of the technology, which is never gonna buy the most cutting edge stuff. The other day Will from The Mill was saying, ‘Oh, there’s this technology now that lipsynchs perfectly’. And lipsynch on a CGI monster is a nightmare, cos it’s so expensive. Cassandra is the only one we’ve ever done properly - and she could hardly move! The effect is very, very expensive, so most of our other CGI monsters just growled and things like that. Now there’s software that can film the actor and can lipsynch it. It was all very exciting! And then he phones up saying, ‘Yes, but it’ll cost £100,000 pounds’, and we simply haven’t got the £100,000 spare – we’ve got a billion other things we can spend it on. So at the top end of Hollywood they’ve got machines that can do that infinitely. But price-wise, you’ve just gotta wait.”

“But it does get better. And actually we have now got one CGI creature towards the end that has got a good few lines of dialogue. Although we’ll have to cut around it, and we’ll have to cut to other people sometimes when it’s talking. But it’s getting better. Two years ago Will would have been saying, ‘That’s absolutely impossible’ unless you spend all your money on it, like we did with Casssandra. Now we can do that, and other things, like that two and a half D thing I was describing.”

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Couldn't they just use models, or am I missing something hugely obvious?

EDIT: Or mattes, like at the start of Caves of Androzani, which looks just fine even today. I don't know if you really need an alien planet to be a hyper-amazing CGI fest for it to work. The Goat Keeper is right to say that there's no real reason why you couldn't set an episode in a library in an alien library, for example.

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Couldn't they just use models, or am I missing something hugely obvious?

EDIT: Or mattes, like at the start of Caves of Androzani, which looks just fine even today. I don't know if you really need an alien planet to be a hyper-amazing CGI fest for it to work. The Goat Keeper is right to say that there's no real reason why you couldn't set an episode in a library in an alien library, for example.

CGI is probably cheaper than practical stuff. And you still have to do the compositing side.

That said, it sounds more like a problem with the way these things are charged for. It shouldn't be a fixed price for every shot if you're using the same assets.

Reminds of the story about K9 being too expensive to turn up to rehearsals.

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Also, the orders were time sealed because otherwise the plot would have fallen apart, which in a closed time loop story is a bit more defensible than usual. I suppose you could say that the loop was far more likely to close if you denied everyone in it the neccessary information until they needed it, which frankly is a more satisfying explination to me than most of the ones down in the 'Wood.

How would the plot have fallen apart?

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Couldn't they just use models, or am I missing something hugely obvious?

EDIT: Or mattes, like at the start of Caves of Androzani, which looks just fine even today.

I love Androzani, but THEY FUCKING DO NOT LOOK FINE EVEN TODAY. They look like what they are. Earth, with a reddish background painted on.

No more of that in 2008, thanks.

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CGI is probably cheaper than practical stuff. And you still have to do the compositing side.

Yeah, that's probably true, actually.

How would the plot have fallen apart?

Because Tosh would have known everything that would happen, thus changing her situation entirely. The first half was based on her remaining in ignorance which wouldn't have been possible if the orders had been open all the time. And they needed to exist in the first place to link the plot together, so I thought it was quite an elegant solution.

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Couldn't they just use models, or am I missing something hugely obvious?

EDIT: Or mattes, like at the start of Caves of Androzani, which looks just fine even today. I don't know if you really need an alien planet to be a hyper-amazing CGI fest for it to work. The Goat Keeper is right to say that there's no real reason why you couldn't set an episode in a library in an alien library, for example.

They could easily use sleight of hand to give the suggestion of an alien location. All it takes is an establishing shot with the rest mostly being filmed as interiors, or in other Earthly locales posing as alien (as in Utopia for instance). Good storytelling and willing suspension of disbelief can take care of the rest. Plus, the FX required for episodes such as The Shakespeare Code and Daleks in Manhattan must've been just as costly as they would be if a story was set somewhere more exotic.

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They could easily use sleight of hand to give the suggestion of an alien location. All it takes is an establishing shot with the rest mostly being filmed as interiors,

Sure but that's all a bit dull isn't it? At least on Earth they can get outside a bit.

They already do this anyway so when people ask for Alien planets I assume they mean proper exterior locations.

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Plus, the FX required for episodes such as The Shakespeare Code and Daleks in Manhattan must've been just as costly as they would be if a story was set somewhere more exotic.

Both of those episodes made use of real locations as well as sets. And alien planet equivelant would be all sets or fx and much more expensive.

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CGI is probably cheaper than practical stuff. And you still have to do the compositing side.

That said, it sounds more like a problem with the way these things are charged for. It shouldn't be a fixed price for every shot if you're using the same assets.

This is why Galactica took the majority of their FX in-house. Effectively "free" shots if reusing assets.

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Both of those episodes made use of real locations as well as sets. And alien planet equivelant would be all sets or fx and much more expensive.

True, but so did something like New Earth which was filmed in location in Cardiff and on the Gower Peninsula IIRC. All you got was a single establishing shot of the futuristic city, followed by the rest of the story taking place inside a modern building taking place of the hospital.

For me, setting stories in other parts of the universe gives a much greater sense of scope and scale to the show than if it's constantly taking place on Earth, even if they are done with a minimum of FX and by giving a 'sense' of place rather than an overt visual representation.

Still, I don't mind Earth-set stories if they're good.

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Well, not expensive expensive, just expensive for a short story if it's all you're buying them for. Depending on the New Adventures you got though I think you may have got a very, very good deal indeed, and I'd check amazon instantly to see what they're all retailing for. I'm fairly sure that decalog alone would recoup the tenner if you sold it there.

EDIT: Fucking hell, the decalog's selling for £31.19 cheapest price at the moment, so I'd say yes, you got a very good deal.

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Oooh! I've got all the Decalog books sitting on a shelf right in front of me (well, the first five anyway - not sure if there were any more than that), but I've not gotten around to reading any of them yet. The missus is away in Cardiff though, and I don't have any more lessons to plan until Sunday evening, so on top of some meaty PS3 Uncharted action and a great big pizza I think I'll read Continuity Errors tonight. Looks like it's only around thirty pages or so. Will report back later.

So the Decalogs are expensive, are they? I picked these up (along with around thirty other New Adventures paperbacks) at a car boot sale last summer, a tenner the lot. All in lovely condition too. Did I do well then?

Christ yes some of the NA's can go for upto £100. You got an amazing deal and some classic books to read.

Some of my fave companions are from the Na's Cwej, Roz and of course Benny. Then there's the fact the NA's 7th doc is still my fave Dr.

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Christ yes some of the NA's can go for upto £100. You got an amazing deal and some classic books to read.

Conversly though some of them go for a penny, so it depends on the ones he got. Given one of them was Decalog 3, though, I think it's a fair bet that whoever sold them had no idea of their value and quite possible that some of them are worth a lot.

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