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1) Vampires of Venice. Had some better moments, but unfortunately they too often sounded like recycled last-of-the Time-Lords-guilt Nine/Ten ones, only without Nine's anger or Ten's more complicated vulnerability. And I guess that's part of my problem with Eleven. It's not that I only ever like angst, but to really connect to a character I need to see a bit of vulnerability, the cracks, the broken bits, what makes them tick, and with Eleven this hasn't really happened yet. He has the arrogance and rudeness, but without the emotions to balance it and make it more tolerable.

[ETA: I really liked the confrontation with Rosanna where he's sitting on the throne. That was brilliant. And very, very scary. Sacrier than Ten even in his dark moments. There's something about Eleven that on a gut-level I find upsetting and unpleasant; I wish I could better rationalise it, but I can't.]

'We don't discuss this. I tell you to do something, Amy, and you do it.' If ever someone said that to me, in that tone of voice, no matter who they are, I'm gone. If someone clamped their hand over my mouth to make me shut up, unless this was a complete life-or-death situation I wasn't aware of? Gone. And definitely not sitting there listening to them talk. Maybe it was supposed to be funny, maybe it was supposed to be geared to children, but I know what my sister or her boyfriend would say, if I or anyone else ever did that to my niece, and she's three and a half, and not a grown woman. That kind of thing... it's not exactly a trigger as such, but certainly a couple of steps in that direction for me, and makes it nearly impossible to like a character who does this, even if he has nicer moments, and actually I'd love to see Donna's reaction if he ever tried that with her. I already found Eleven asking little Amy to cook for him in the first episode a bit of a squick, and this kind of thing doesn't help at all.

I guess my main problem with Eleven and Amy is that I just can't see their relationship as a mutual one. I see a little girl who already was an orphan to begin with, sitting in the garden on her suitcase, waiting for someone who promised to be back, and then trying to deal with this experience throughout her childhood and adolescence. A young woman left behind for another two years, oops. It's easy to see what he is to her, and it makes me uncomfortable in ways neither Rose, nor Martha, nor Donna's relationship with the Doctor made me, because they at least had lives and a personality before they met him, whereas Amy's has always been overshadowed by him. With all three of them I had moments where I maybe wasn't too happy with their fixation of the Doctor, but never to the point of where I'd call it unhealthy, and nothing as iffy as little Amelia with her dolls and drawings. In the sense that he apparently was the only adult who massively influenced her childhood, he is a sort of parental figure at least within the context of the narrative, much more than the dead parents we know nothing about or the absent aunt, and this not only makes her crush on him feel weirdly incestuous, but also gives their relationship too much of a power imbalance to begin with for my taste. At least with Reinette we knew almost from the beginning who she was, an famous historical figure with a life of her own, and even if the episode increasingly focused on her relationship with the Doctor, it couldn't entirely erase that fact or reduce her existence to that. And so far I don't really see what Amy is to the Doctor. Still the child he first met? Does he even want someone grown up with a mind of their own? Or does this even make a difference from his Time Lord vantage point?

And do we really have to recycle the Rose/Micky/Doctor triangle, except with more painful tell-don't-show discussions, when I don't see it ending any better, what with Karen Gillan already signed up for S2 Amy saying to Rory 'Stay. With us. Just for a bit,' when the episode started with Rory believing he and Amy were an 'us'?

It's a bit like the Dalek episode, which I thought had so much potential in the beginning, when the Doctor kept insisting that the Dalek must be a Dalek, because he needs his enemies to be his enemies or his whole worldview might explode, and then resolves into iDaleks and a generic, recycled plot that merely proves him right? *sigh*

Also, if the rest of this season is going to be as painfully straight, straight and more straight as the first six episodes were, I'm going to be annoyed.

2) Yesterday's show. Meh. You'd think if you practice a choreography, one choreography, for months, you'd get to the point where you'd be able to perform it without any mistakes, but clearly I'm too much of an idiot even for that. The whole thing has sucked up so much energy and generated so much frustration over the last months, I really was hoping at least for a good kind of closure, but apparently that wasn't meant to happen either. And this is supposed to be a hobby. Fun. I wish I could stop myself from overreacting so much all the time over issues that are stupid and petty in any scheme of things, never mind greater, only making life harder for myself, but on some level I can't help feeling that at least the little things should be controllable and work out as perfectly as possible, if I already constantly fuck up all the big ones. *bangs head on desk in frustration*


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
May. 10th, 2010 07:08 pm (UTC)
Don't let me put you off; I suspect there are some personal issues that trigger this kind of (over?)reaction. Like you said, the vast majority loves it and isn't bothered in the slightest, so I'm fully aware the problem might be with me, rather than with the show.

What more people do agree on on some level is that (for better or worse) RTD's DW was more emotional, the characters, even minor ones, more fully realised and three-dimensional. SM's plots tend to be cleverer (although not without plot-holes either), but personally I miss the warmth and unabashed enthusiasm...

May. 24th, 2010 12:21 pm (UTC)
As always I LOVE reading your meta!

I too was intensely annoyed by the Doctor/Rose/Mickey parallels, but luckily I think that's been taken care of now (?)

Hmm, as for your very thoughtful and interesting take on the relationship between Eleven and Amy, are we supposed to think it's mutual, that it's like (I know that's not what you're saying or what you mean it's just hard to find a way to talk about this) the relationship he had with the other Companions? Isn't it supposed to be exactly as you describe? I often think that, in keeping with your other post with regard to the ambiguity of RTD's writing, what the audience thinks they know about the Doctor, his place in the world, his views on the World - ultimately who he IS - may Not Be what IS, only what we're comfortable with. I think that the Doctor is very much a product of our own psyches and we tend to gloss over what we find uncomfortable about his nature, his very real flaws. What I mean by this is that he is THERE - warts and all - but we often read him with with shades placed firmly over eyes so that only certain ...colours...can be accessed.

I really do think that that what you're highlighting is exactly the issue they're trying to highlight - that we don't really SEE him for who and what he is - even when it's staring us in the face!

The thing I love about your posts is that you see all the grey, yucky underbelly of the thing and TELL it like it is - for you. I think that it NEEDS to be told because, like I said, that IS the point of the show - to get us examining who we are by how we read and react to the themes, situations - and characters - in the show.
May. 25th, 2010 07:24 pm (UTC)
Isn't it supposed to be exactly as you describe?

Maybe - I guess the end of the season might clarify that a bit. I haven't seen Saturday's episode yet because I was stuck in Salzburg with a horribly slow internet connection and pay per bandwidth internet, but the Dream Lord=Doctor reveal IMO does have a lot of potential for darkness. I just wonder if they're really going to go there, because that never seemed to been a theme in SM's writing, but I guess we'll see.

I really wonder if it's just me, though... There are some things about Eleven, like the way he ordered Amy back to the Tardis that really bothered me, but I seem to be in the minority here, so, who knows. And I really must admit I haven't given S5 all that many deep thoughts so far, because it simply hasn't really engaged me emotionally, so I always wonder if I'm being unfair.

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )


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