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Finished rewatching DW S3, which is dark & complicated & so ambiguous regarding the Doctor. The themes of S1 & 2 are easy, but S3... *sigh* It's strange, but WoM/TEoT fixed the image and arc of the Doctor in a way that makes the earlier problematic parts stand out a lot more, and the whole thing darker. I'm still not entirely sure what impression we're supposed to get from S3 Doctor.

It's a bit of an uneven season, too, IMO. Smith and Jones is a very good first episode, I liked The Shakespeare Code quite a bit better than I remembered, and Gridlock is still lovely. But then there's the block Daleks in Manhattan/Evolution of the Daleks/The Lazarus Experiment which is a bit... maybe not actually bad as such, but could also be a lot better, which is a pity, because there are so many motives that will reappear in the finale introduced in these episodes. Ditto 42, which is somehow really, really random.

Human Nature/The Family of the Blood is still very good, although I find the ending a bit artificial and too romanticised; but the episodes are so dark and painful in all kinds of ways that I guess it needed something a little lighter in the end.

Blink is good, the angels are adequately scary, but somehow, I don't know why, I can't warm up to the episode.

The finale is still fantastic; IMO the best RTD has written, because it's so quiet and restrained and focuses on the emotional and philosophic themes. Feels a bit CoE-esque occasionally. Somehow I always expect to be disappointed when I rewatch it, but I still get shivers down my spine every time they open the globe and the head says, 'the stars are made of diamonds'. Ouch. And the Doctor and the Master... so fucked up, so ambiguous. Tragic, certainly, but... complicated. Very.

The strange thing is, I never thought Martha really fit into TW, and didn't like it a lot when she crossed over, but I really love her in DW, at least in this season. She's, quote, unquote, a big damn hero there, especially considering the less than heroic part the Doctor plays in the finale, and his treatment of her.


Huge over-ambitious meta post is already huge, and I haven't even finished rewatching DW yet. *sigh* It's fun, though, and really fascinating, especially bringing DW and TW together, since they always were somehow separate (probably too separate) in my mind.

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( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
elisi
Mar. 31st, 2010 07:14 pm (UTC)
You know, I think I agree with every single thing in this post. S3 (the final three episodes specifically) were what made me tumble head first into proper obsession with the show, so that's like my benchmark for DW, if that makes sense.

Looking forward to your post muchly!
solitary_summer
Mar. 31st, 2010 07:24 pm (UTC)
Personally, I think some of the darkness and themes of TW S1 might have spilled over; especially the motif of the dark and destructive aspects of human nature that is suddenly huge in S3; and the Doctor's arc reflects that, also becoming more ambiguous...
elisi
Mar. 31st, 2010 07:28 pm (UTC)
::nods:: I happen to like darkness, so it worked rather well for me! And this reminded me of this vid, which is exceedingly clever and full of meta. :)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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