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Stan goes to Gallipoli

Posted February 17, 2015 into Telly by John Birmingham

I signed up for Stan, the new Netflix-like (or maybe Netflix-lite) streaming service as soon as it became available. I'll sign up for Netflix too when it arrives. Even at a combined total of twenty bucks a month, that's a fraction of my Foxtel bill. I'm just waiting for Jane to work through a series she's watching there, and then I'll definitely cut the cable on Murdoch. I don't know that I'll bother with their streaming service, Presto. It's twenty-five a month and if it's anything like their standard service, it'll be crap.

There's plenty of crap on Stan and Netflix, of course. A lot of shows I'll never bother to watch. But given the slow rate at which I get through series, a tenner a month is very good value for me. I'm currently watching Breaking Bad, which I've always meant to catch up on. And Gallipoli.

Gallipoli has been a surprise. I expected it to be awful. Like, Underbelly Squizzy Taylor awful. But apart from a few production issues (soldiers with no facial hair, rifles that sound like pop guns) it's been very good. I'm basing that on only two episodes watched, but Steve Molk seems to agree and I trust his judgment.

It's interesting that Stan has gone into first run production so quickly, but I suppose not surprising given the presence of the Nine Network in the joint venture and the examples provided by Netflix and Amazon in the US. There's more coming too, apparently.

Foxtel's chief poobah insists the streamers will eventually default to his model. Pay for access and suffer through advertsiing, but that might just as well be wishful thinking. I really hate adverts on Foxtel. I'm paying those clowns so much every month and they're still wasting my time with ads. It's partly what makes me reluctant to consider Presto as a streamer.

Anyway, I'm happy with both my subscription and the first local show I've invested time in, Gallipoli. It's worth checking out if you're so inclined.

Lobes would prefer I mention I'm employed by Fairfax at this point. They are the other joint venture principal with Nine. But I think we all know that.

54 Responses to ‘Stan goes to Gallipoli’

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan puts forth...

Posted February 17, 2015
I didn't know about Gallipoli. But I binge-watched breaking bad on Netflix. Amazing television.

Note, but no spoiler - the Jesse Pinkman character was originally intended to be present in only a few early episodes.

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Lobes would have you know...

Posted February 17, 2015
*nods approvingly*

Speaking of Channel 9, JB did you get a chance to read Geoff Lemons excoriating take down of the Ch 9 cricket commentary team? Its gone viral thanks to its combination of piercing insight and the merciless skewering of fading legends. Anchorman Jamie Brayshaw and producer Brad McNamara get it particularly hard.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2015/feb/13/channel-nine-destroying-cricket-legacy

Brayshaw is the forward marker of the new regime: an AFL commentator
who trades in hyperbole and volume and phrases like “big unit”, and
calls like a man who’s kept half an eye on cricket in pubs over the
years. There are the touchstones: teenage Tendulkar made a Waca Ground
hundred, Laxman and Dravid were rather good, Indian batsmen have wrists.
But no detail, no effort to learn. Wriddhiman Saha would never have
seen the Adelaide Oval, declared Brayshaw, when Saha’s grand total of
two career Tests included an Adelaide debut. The most cursory glance at
Cricinfo would have done the trick. “Gee, you’re unlucky,” was Slater’s
vacant-grinning response. Or later in the series, Brayshaw again: “If
you’re the Indian fast bowling coach – I don’t even know who that is, by
the way...”


There’s a deliberate idiocy at work here: not just not knowing, but
making a point of not knowing, and of telling us he doesn’t know.
Consciously or not, this is Brayshaw nudging his audience to say that he
doesn’t give a fig about this touring team, that none of us need to,
they’re a mere backdrop to Australian glory.




Peter Bradley has opinions thus...

Posted February 17, 2015
Thanks for the heads up Lobes. So sad it is true.

BigWillieStyle mutters...

Posted February 18, 2015

@Lobes

I read the Lemon article last week after getting a heads-up on Twittle. Agreed with every word he typed. I immediately tweeted Brad McNamara, just to make sure he knew about the article and that it captured him perfectly. I got #Blockedbybrad as a result. He was a sledging, bullying tryhard as a player, and has evidently morphed into a sneering, sycophantic fanboy as a producer.

BigWillieStyle puts forth...

Posted February 18, 2015

It'd be easier to hate on Brayshaw if he didn't have any cricket cred, but he does. Decade-long first-class career, and a highly respectable batting average in the mid-40s. He'd likely get in the Test team these days with that average.

Similar to Sam Newman and Paul Vautin, and their blokey, 1970s schtick on their respective Shows de Footy. Gruesome, superannuated buffoons, but unfortunately they've got footy cred to hang their hats on.

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Barnesm is gonna tell you...

Posted February 17, 2015

Storing Gallipolli up on the Foxtel box till the whole series released.

I agree the fact you have to pay for advertising on Foxtel seems to be a sick joke.

Initially interested becasue the posters used to promote Gallipolli with Kodi Smit-McPhee as Tolly Johnson had a more than passing resembles my son the_weapon. So much so that his mother is having some difficulties watching the series, particularly since she has seen the _weapon in his cadet uniform.

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coriolisdave ducks in to say...

Posted February 17, 2015
What's the go with series on Stan, JB? Do they only do full seasons, or do new eps go up as they're aired in the states?

(eg is Justified up-to-date, or still only up to season 5?)

John Birmingham swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 17, 2015
I'll check, but I can tell you that Gallipoli is all there, ready for a binge.

Spanner puts forth...

Posted February 17, 2015
Whaaaaaat? All there and add free?
All I have to do is pay?
Take my money. Take it all. Take it now.

John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted February 17, 2015
Checked. Avail up to S5 only.

coriolisdave reckons...

Posted February 18, 2015
Thanks!

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Spanner would have you know...

Posted February 17, 2015
I liked Gallipoli. There were a few minor irritations like the popgun sound made by the SMLE and the lack of recoil.
The thing that stuck out for me was some of the actors lack of familiarity with the action of the bolt on the SMLE. They made using one of the fastest and easiest actions look slow, difficult and clumsy.

Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted February 17, 2015
is that becasue as the raw troops that would be how they handled the weapons or was this also supposedly experienced troops. Apologies as I have yet to watch the series.

John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted February 17, 2015
I think it was just the actors.

Abe Frellman ducks in to say...

Posted February 17, 2015
My money is on the actors. The Lee-Enfield is famous for convincing enemies facing them that they were facing automatic weapons, such was the rate of fire a few riflemen could send down range. I saw a doco that did a side by side comparison with comparable rifles of the day, esp German ones. The big difference is that the SMLE rifleman could work the bolt without moving his eye from the sights, whereas with the German equivalent he would have to disengage after each round. Nobody seems to have told the makers of Gallipoli about that.

Defender90 mutters...

Posted February 17, 2015
I agree. Haven't seen Gallipoli but British WW1 dramas get this stuff wrong so often - I guess they just take a bunch of out of work waiters, sorry thespians, get some uniforms out of stores and they're done.Also the point about facial hair is bang on, look at period film and photos and one sees that hair was worn oiled and slick accessorised with face fur. Looks like meeja types don't do research.

Jon has opinions thus...

Posted February 18, 2015
If any bold troop is trained on a bolt action rifle they can send a decent amount of lead, SMLE or Mauser down range, spose you could ask the turks or anzacs about that. I will have a poke at the gallipoli one though, cheers for the heads up.

Spanner puts forth...

Posted February 18, 2015
Barnes, if the troops were that green then they would have developed a big flinch when the straight stock of the SMLE smacked em in the cheekbone. The actors had no flinch but just couldn't work the action.

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Sparty is gonna tell you...

Posted February 17, 2015
Well you're in for a treat with five seasons of Breaking Bad...Via Cable channels in the UK were starting to get more Australian drama here (rather than just the Kylie MInogue Origin Show) so tips on top Aussie drama to look out for appreciated. Saw lots of trailers for underbelly - pity it sounds dodgy.

John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted February 17, 2015
The first one was brilliant

insomniac mutters...

Posted February 17, 2015
Not all Underbelly's were bad, or as bad as Squizzy. To be honest though, we never really watched them, except for Underbelly Badness, and that was because ms insomniac's daughter was in it.

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pi swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 17, 2015
I loved the first two seasons of Breaking bad, but I found it got a bit slow around mid season 3. But when it came good, it was like... <insert major euphoric drug reference here>. From half-way through season 4 to completion, it was some of the best television ever made.

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buboe reckons...

Posted February 18, 2015

Presto is $9.99 a month at the moment. Movies are better than Stan, but there's no TV. It's also got some technical issues. We were subscribed December and January, and probably spent about 10 days of that locked out of our account...


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BigWillieStyle puts forth...

Posted February 18, 2015
I also signed up with Stan, for no other reason than to watch "Better Call Saul". Also intend to get me some Netflix action (they've got "Lillyhammer" and "Derek"). Apart from a one-month free trial in mid-2012 (and I only got it because of the 8 Olympic Games channels), I've never had Foxtel. Would rather shave a lion with a rusty razor then pay RuMu one fucking cent for his shitty TV wares.

w from brisbane is gonna tell you...

Posted February 18, 2015
I rather like that alternate name for the News Corp chairman, Rupert Morloch.

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GhostSwirv would have you know...

Posted February 18, 2015


Am thinking about signing on to one of the new streaming services, do not currently subscribe economically, ethically or spiritually to Foxtel.

Have only an ADSL connection, distance from exchange is almost 5kms and is not particularly fast, no access to Cable or NBN in the foreseeable future, so I'm wondering if streaming content is gonna be worth it.

Does anyone have anything good to say about ISP and can recommend a plan or provider.

Thinking of buying one of Elon Musk's Tesla sedan's with the free satellite thrown, I wish, so any real-world advice would be welcome.

GhostSwirv over and out of bandwidth.

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NBlob reckons...

Posted February 18, 2015


Sorry for the OT. A facebook, er <EM>contact</EM> is pimping the "Unions Bad" WWII book.You provided a link to an article that pretty effectively dismembered it. Now I cant find the entry wherein you posted the link. Can you help?

damian is gonna tell you...

Posted February 18, 2015
“Colebatch is entitled to his own opinions, but not his own facts. Australia’s Secret War is a farrago.”

NBlob would have you know...

Posted February 19, 2015

Thankyou sir. Was witlessly countered with

" Pfffft,"

&

"My Dad and his unit had to unload their own gear when they got back from Japan, wharfies refused to unload ship ,"

You know, I cant be arsed to argue. Some numpties are welcome to their own road to hell.


Lulu has opinions thus...

Posted February 19, 2015
Nblob, some people cling to ignorance in the face of all evidence. To take a small example, of the many many online comments I have read this week about the Bali 2, a large number have been from people who thought they were arrested trying to smuggle drugs *into* Bali.

NBlob has opinions thus...

Posted February 19, 2015
+1It used to anger, now it intrigues me.Thinker-tinkerers refer to The Dunnning Kruger effect, the attractiveness of exclusive revelations, anonymous disinhibition and other syndromes. I think there is just a surfeit of arsehats.Don't get me wrong I believe there are arsehats on both sides of the left/right progressive/conservative divide. In this particular instance, I look upon these clowns as under & misinformed. I used to believe that if I bought information of sufficient quantity & quality I could convince them of the Correct (ie my) position. I no longer feel that way. As an old saying has it "Don't try to teach a pig to sing, it wastes your time & annoys the pig."What still kinda bugs me is terms like "leftards."

Blake is gonna tell you...

Posted February 21, 2015
I made the mistake of trying to make a rational argument about respecting competence of trained experts on complex issues on the abc facebook page... I was surprised at how much i was told that i needed to 'do my research' and 'get educated'... I suspect the irony was lost on them.
So many people dropped into the reply thread to shout random incorrect, wrong and assumed facts about the topic at me... i snarked for a while complimenting people on their rounded and well though out insults (idiot was popular), i got angry for a bit...so many crazies thought that hospital workers were all corrupt uncaring monsters.. How does such a belief perpetuate?All in all a very rounded experience in the culture of ignorance. I thought for a while it was because it may have appeared

Blake ducks in to say...

Posted February 21, 2015
...i may have appeared to diss the magic green herb (did you know it has no side effects? And can cure all ills?)...
But in the end i realised that these folks were never going to be happy, i could shout from the rooftops my support for their cause, i could break the shackles of our nanny state but if i dared to suggest that there might be evidence that contradicted their own opinions then i was a corrupted demon who should be burned at the stake.
It wasnt all bad, in the 75 or so posts i read before realising continuing reading and trolling would consume me some people were supportive...one person even nominated me for PM. Not that thats much of a vote of confidence at the moment

John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted February 21, 2015
We appreciate your effort anyway.

damian would have you know...

Posted February 22, 2015
"Don't get me wrong I believe there are arsehats on both sides of the left/right progressive/conservative divide."
<font color="#333333">In the 90s I would have agreed. I'm sure there are still some out there, maybe it's just the circles I move in but I find the leftish sort vanishingly rare these days, for values of "these days" that certainly include all of this millennium to date.</font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">Of course there's a distinction between people who genuinely believe arsehatish things, hold genuinely arsehatish positions they will defend vigorously, and people who merely behave oafishly. </font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">And there's always category issues related to the whole left/right thing not really making that much sense anymore. I always see anti-vaxers for instance as a right-wing thing, being all about induhvidual choice and how Big Government is bad. (That they also talk about Big Pharma suggests what they really don't like is Big things, and I know the Big Cow is gone, maybe we need to check on the Big Pineapple). I see a lot of the trendy, new-agey, ex-hippy stuff that manifests itself as small-businesses and books about individual empowerment as inheriently right-wing (California ueber alles and all that), but I'm aware some people find this counter intuitive.

I also have great problems with stuff like "leftard". I wonder what we (as in Australian culture) did right to avoid accruing the words "retarded" or "gay" as insults. I'm moderately enraged that countless teenagers internalised them through otherwise comical Cartman impression done without full understanding of the satirical layer. Some with, sure, but still. </font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">One of the most beautiful women I knew in the 80s had CP and she told a story about once being trapped by skinheads in a phone box, who pissed on her while chanting "retard". Every single person using the term in this sense is lining up with those boys, intentionally or not.</font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">Maybe it's a question of perspective and people who don't have enough? I'm not clear. I find myself avoiding entering the fray, mostly because it's tiring and there are far more important things to use one's energy for. But also there's the enraging stuff and the way just encountering some of these people cheapens you. The stupid, it burns.</font>

damian asserts...

Posted February 22, 2015
Curious - this was all just typed straight in here, other than the small snippet from NBlob's comment which was copied and pasted but doesn't seem affected.

NBlob reckons...

Posted February 22, 2015

Yeah there is some interesting formatting things going down. I suspect the beasts in the Spam trap are getting hungry, so have sent their formatting gremlins up to tempt the less temperate into doing something rash.

On my iPhone & SWMBO's Fondle Slab, carriage returns don't "take."

On the desktop @ lunch {during my lunch break} they do.

damian would have you know...

Posted February 22, 2015
Well I've got the Madness button, so I might experiment a little till I get it right.

damian mutters...

Posted February 22, 2015
"Don't get me wrong I believe there are arsehats on both sides of the left/right progressive/conservative divide."

In the 90s I would have agreed. I'm sure there are still some out there, maybe it's just the circles I move in but I find the leftish sort vanishingly rare these days, for values of "these days" that certainly include all of this millennium to date.

Of course there's a distinction between people who genuinely believe arsehatish things, hold genuinely arsehatish positions they will defend vigorously, and people who merely behave oafishly.

And there's always category issues related to the whole left/right thing not really making that much sense anymore. I always see anti-vaxers for instance as a right-wing thing, being all about induhvidual choice and how Big Government is bad. (That they also talk about Big Pharma suggests what they really don't like is Big things, and I know the Big Cow is gone, maybe we need to check on the Big Pineapple). I see a lot of the trendy, new-agey, ex-hippy stuff that manifests itself as small-businesses and books about individual empowerment as inheriently right-wing (California ueber alles and all that), but I'm aware some people find this counter intuitive.

I also have great problems with stuff like "leftard". I wonder what we (as in Australian culture) did right to avoid accruing the words "retarded" or "gay" as insults. I'm moderately enraged that countless teenagers internalised them through otherwise comical Cartman impression done without full understanding of the satirical layer. Some with, sure, but still.

One of the most beautiful women I knew in the 80s had CP and she told a story about once being trapped by skinheads in a phone box, who pissed on her while chanting "retard". Every single person using the term in this sense is lining up with those boys, intentionally or not.
Maybe it's a question of perspective and people who don't have enough? I'm not clear. I find myself avoiding entering the fray, mostly because it's tiring and there are far more important things to use one's energy for. But also there's the enraging stuff and the way just encountering some of these people cheapens you. The stupid, it burns.

damian asserts...

Posted February 22, 2015
Done FWIW

John Birmingham would have you know...

Posted February 22, 2015
Interestingly, Damian, Jon Gruber and Merlin Mann were discussing the politics of the anti-vaxxer 'movement' on The Talk Show a week or so back. Gruber had done some research, i.e., read some other dude's research. There is no partisan divide. The anti-vcxx movement is split right down the middle of left and right. Equal representation from both sides.

damian puts forth...

Posted February 22, 2015
I'm not really surprised, and maybe you can see me as trying to balance the perception - most people seem to think for whatever reason it's a left thing.

I guess my point is there's no such thing as a left thing anymore.

damian has opinions thus...

Posted February 22, 2015
Also: what's left/right? Suspect self-assessment or even more dubious method.

NBlob reckons...

Posted February 22, 2015
"The anti-vcxx movement is split right down the middle of left and right. Equal representation from both sides." Worst. Case. Scenario CrossingtheStrands of Stupid.

damian has opinions thus...

Posted February 22, 2015
Cf my point about new-age hippy stuff being (almost inherently) tory. Perception and traditional wisdom here being 180 degrees out of whack

NBlob mumbles...

Posted February 22, 2015
Without honest Self Perception & a shared nomenclature we don't have discourse we have mad hooting & branch waving.

damian has opinions thus...

Posted February 22, 2015
No argument, though I've experience of notably tory folks claiming t obe "a bit left" for 20 years. Not sure if it counts as an attempt to drag the middle or just a kind of delusion. Not convinced if it is a delusion that it's rare.

damian asserts...

Posted February 22, 2015
Anyway Birmo - the point is, you're basically repeating the point I was trying to make. Not just a left thing.

Blake has opinions thus...

Posted February 24, 2015
Re: Gay / Retard.Agree that it's probably not for the good thinking people to be reinforcing the lingo, but i think that saying "Every single person using the term in this sense is lining up with those boys, intentionally or not." is probably going a little far.(or maybe it will be).
<font color="#333333">We do this crazy thing where the English language is constantly in flux but we don't see it as an ocean of change but as a standing body of water.</font><font color="#333333">There is a moment in WoC that i came across yesterday where the '42's struggle with the description of a character as "gay" 'you mean she's happy?'</font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">Today we're all happy to accept that 'gay' is a synonym of homosexual, and one that is acceptable to use in polite company when used appropriately. 'Fag' has moved to self-irony acceptance category (with 'nigga') but remains derogatory when cast. But given 20 years is that going to remain true? if our society keep reinforcing retard and gay as words of derision then all the lgbt community has to do is adopt a new acceptable name and its a matter of time till we forget what it was supposed to mean in the first place?</font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">When i was growing up, 'spastic' was a word one kid might use to describe another kid who can't catch a ball, it wasn't till i was much older when an Adam Hills story made me realise it's earlier definition.</font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">I just don't think words are worth making that much fuss about - why is the news of Benedict Cummerbatch accidentally dropping the term 'coloured people' more interesting than the point he was trying to make? </font><font color="#333333">
</font><font color="#333333">In other news...look there's to topic--> I signed up for the Stan trial to catch up on Sherlock...so far so good - i wonder if Au will get a better deal with GoT this time around?</font>

Blake puts forth...

Posted February 24, 2015
Cannot win with the formatting here - on the tablet trying to edit mistakes usually ends in the submit button being spuriously pressed mid-thought and hence am paranoid about getting the words out and punctuation doesn't get done
On the PC i need a word-limit to keep the ranting short and i'm being foiled by hypertext inserts.

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted February 24, 2015
Yeah I'd be giving them a swerve.

damian reckons...

Posted February 25, 2015
Blake, it's not about fretting over language or giving some nebulously defined idea of "offence", though talking about that is one of the ways people deal with it. It's actually really hard to communicate the empathy you need to understand this without examples and role play exercises. I'm crap at examples and always see my role more in analysis and strategy, in which case it just isn't my job to convince people to be better people. But I do think that people who want to be better people work on the empathy thing themselves. It's about putting yourself in the place of someone who has to live there.
Ann Coulter has said the Down's Syndrome guy who objected to her using "retard" to insult Obama was being "authoritarian". Presumably because she thinks her culture is so generous not putting him in a gas chamber.

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DarrenBloomfield asserts...

Posted February 18, 2015
I'd do it too. But for sport. It's sport where foxtel have me by the nuts

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Respond to 'Stan goes to Gallipoli'

The Flash

Posted December 13, 2014 into Telly by John Birmingham

The ladies took themselves off to the ballet last night, leaving the lads at home to amuse themselves, which we did by catching up with the first eps of The Flash. I ran the trailer here a while and said I was looking forward to it. It turned out to be even better than I expected.

The cast is heavy with talent, especially in the older 'character' roles. The moral/personal dilemmas are pretty well thought out. The effects are oddly cheesy. But enjoyable in a 1980s kinda way.

The amp which forms the beating heart of my home entertainment system is still dead, post lightning strike, so Thomas and I repaired to my office where the 27" iMac did sterling duty as a stand in teev.

I think I'll be happy to invest in this series. Possibly because I always thought Barry Allen's superpwer was the coolest of them all. Think of the commuting time you'd save.

18 Responses to ‘The Flash’

Lobes has opinions thus...

Posted December 13, 2014
i always liked the flash he has one of the most awesome suite of powers, definitely a favorite. However he suffers from superman syndrome in that he's so completely overpowered for any reasonable opponent that you find him battling existential threats week in wekn out.

TheWah mutters...

Posted December 14, 2014
The way the tv show is building his power level slowly is great.

He can run at 200 mph.. now it's faster.. can he hit 700 mph and run across water? Yes!
Can he break the sound barrier to save that girl's life.. woo!

It's be a fun ride watching Barry slowly figure out what a super speedster can do.

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TheWah reckons...

Posted December 14, 2014
I've been really enjoying The Flash tv show. More light hearted and fun compared to Arrow. I've also been enjoying Constantine a hell of a lot too

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted December 14, 2014
This is wonderful television. Anyone can watch and enjoy it without having read the comics. But for those who read them, it is a special pleasure knowing who the Man in Yellow is and seeing how they adapt this old, established story line for television.

I love Arrow. I binge-watched the first two seasons on Netflix. Arrow is less joyous only because Barry Allen didn't walk through hell and back to become "special" the way Oliver Queen did.

The DC universe is as rich, if not richer, with potential media product than the Marvel universe. But Man of Steel and the Green Lantern were such horrible adaptations. It seemed the DC Powers That Be couldn't make the hard decisions needed to abandon the details they loved as children in order to breathe new life into the concepts. But with Arrow, the Flash and what looks like promising pending depictions of the Atom and the Spectre, it looks like those with the power and money to bring DC properties to new life finally have their shit together. We anticipate the Justice League and Batman v. Superman with new hope.

Barnesm would have you know...

Posted December 14, 2014
Have to agree, it seems like Marvel might be winning on the big screen but DC is winning on the small. Agents of Shield not withstanding.

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Dave W is gonna tell you...

Posted December 14, 2014
Flash! Ahhhooooo. Saviour of the universe!

Oh, wait. My bad.

Sudragon ducks in to say...

Posted December 14, 2014
Now I have to find and watch that movie again, if only for the soundtrack and BRIAN BLESSED.

Which also means finding Highlander as well.

Oh hell, lets make it a Cult Movie Christmas.

Anthony mumbles...

Posted December 14, 2014
No, please, not Brian Bloody Blessed. Unless you have a special Brian Blessed volume and pomposity controller...

Sudragon swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted December 14, 2014
But...but... no-one else chews scenery so well.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan mumbles...

Posted December 14, 2014
Oh yeah, and Gotham is the best show on television.

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Barnesm is gonna tell you...

Posted December 14, 2014
I wonder if "the man in yellow" will turn out to be the professor Xavier character in the TV series? (Dr Harrision Wells -Thank you wikipidiea)

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted December 14, 2014
Don't know. Although the Reverse Flash story line, including Barry's mother's murder, is right out of the The Flash Reborn mini series, there is no Dr. Wells in any of the DC universes.

Barnesm is gonna tell you...

Posted December 14, 2014
Thats why I figure he could be the character after all Dr Caitlin Snow in the DC universe is 'killer frost' but I don't see Ms Panabaker's character going that way in this TV series.

Sudragon is gonna tell you...

Posted December 14, 2014
Considering the latest episode, i wouldn't rule anything out.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted December 15, 2014
That's the ultimate fun of anything worth watching: it keeps us guessing.

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Dan reckons...

Posted December 15, 2014

Best thing about the new DC tv shows. They take the old, established material and in quite a few cases, turn it on it's head (a la Huntress in Arrow).

I am looking forward to what they do. No need to cling to the original stories beyond a nod and do something fresh!

Now if only DC can get their big screen sh*t together... being a Green Lantern fan since birth, I almost ended it after the film...
such pain, such agony.. like firing bullets at one meter and missing the target.

Dan

PS - I want my Hooper books NOW!! Thank you...

Barnesm would have you know...

Posted December 15, 2014
We don't like to talk about the green lantern movie, I think there's a support group for us.

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The Wire in widescreen HD

Posted December 3, 2014 into Telly by John Birmingham

HBO is releasing the series remastered for widescreenHD. Really interesting bit here at David Simon's blog, or interesting for those of us who make our quids by telling stories, about the power of story telling form. I would have thought that reframing a show like The Wire for wide screen was purely a matter of making it awesomer. But no. There are compromises:

... Over the past several months, looking at some of what the widescreen format offered, three things became entirely clear: First, there were many scenes in which the shot composition is not impaired by the transfer to 16:9, and there are a notable number of scenes that acquire real benefit from playing wide. An example of a scene that benefits would be, say, from the final episode of season two, when an apostolic semicircle of longshoremen forms around the body of Frank Sobotka. Fine as far as it goes, but the dockworkers are all that much more vulnerable, and that much more isolated by the death of their leader when we have the ability to go wider in that rare crane shot.

But there are other scenes, composed for 4:3, that lose some of their purpose and power, to be sure. An early example that caught my eye is a scene from the pilot episode, carefully composed by Bob, in which Wee Bey delivers to D’Angelo a homily on established Barksdale crew tactics. “Don’t talk in the car,” D’Angelo reluctantly offers to Wee Bey, who stands below a neon sign that declares, “burgers” while D’Angelo, less certain in his standing and performance within the gang, stands beneath a neon label of “chicken.”

That shot composition was purposed, and clever, and it works better in the 4:3 version than when the screen is suddenly widened to pick up additional neon to the left of Bey. In such a case, the new aspect ratio’s ability to acquire more of the world actually detracts from the intention of the scene and the composition of the shot. For that reason, we elected in the new version to go tighter on the shot in order to maintain some of the previous composition, albeit while coming closer to our backlit characters than the scene requires. It is, indeed, an arguable trade-off, but one that reveals the cost of taking something made in one construct and recasting it for another format. And this scene isn’t unique; there are a good number of similar losses in the transfer, as could be expected.

8 Responses to ‘The Wire in widescreen HD’

Lobes mumbles...

Posted December 3, 2014
I havnt seen the wire, does this extract have spoilers?

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Spanner asserts...

Posted December 4, 2014
Yeah it does have spoilers. The Wire is such a slow burn that you probably won't notice the spoilers but best not read any further. It is defiantly worth a watch.


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puma is gonna tell you...

Posted December 4, 2014
I tried to get into it but couldn't. Maybe try again. I did enjoy Generation Kill immensely. Shame they didn't make more of that.

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Lobes mumbles...

Posted December 4, 2014
Thanks Spanner. Yeah have heard good reports on it. I watched about half the pilot then got bored and flicked over. But being re-released in HD might be a reason to try again.

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Lulu swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted December 4, 2014
I watched the first episode or so when it was finally shown on ABC2 (I think?), and I was strangely reminded of the old series Hill Street Blues. Didn't get into The Wire, but I have very fond memories of the other David Simon/ Baltimore series, Homicide.

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Aaron reckons...

Posted December 4, 2014
For those interested there is a good interview with the actor who plays the junkie (can't remember the name - Latino American guy) on Marc marons WTF podcast. A good listen all the interviews are long form

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Spanner asserts...

Posted December 4, 2014
The Wire is about building the case slowly and methodically a "police procedural" before the event rather than the forensics TV shows we see after the event. It's also about the dealers side of the equation and how they set up their own procedures not to get caught.

I will admit that watching the box set in 4:3 did give me the irrits.

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Crocko asserts...

Posted December 4, 2014
I started on the Wire when it was on abc 2, and then drifted away from it. When I got sick of being told it was "the greatest show ever" I went back and watched it on box set. I was hooked, and it pretty much chewed up 2 weeks of a January holiday. Stick with it as the pay off is worth it, but as others have said, it is a slow burn.

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JJ Abrams to adapt Stephen King's '63' for Hulu

Posted September 24, 2014 into Telly by John Birmingham

Da King's alternate history/time travel epic is a great pick for a long form adaptation. And I usually love most of whatever Abrams does. Where the hell he's going to find the time to do it, and whether we'll ever see it here in Oz – outside of Foxtel – is another matter.

11/22/63 to use the book's full (and really awful) title is arguably King's best work. The story of Jake Epping, an English teacher, as King once was, who uses a friend's, er, timey-wimey portal to skip back to 1958 and eventually to try and foil the Kennedy assassination, was something of a critical break through – being widely and favorably reviewed as a work of literature as much as genre. Some actual critics of real grown up books pronounced it the best novel of 2011

I enjoyed it so much I'm thinking I might do the audiobook with Thomas once we finish The Stand.

Still, Hulu.

I have grave reservations about the availability of this series when it is finally released. I won't be stealing it, natch, but if Foxtel locks it up I might have to wait until it's released on disc or try to get it from US iTunes or something.

My commitment to paying for content doesn't extend to respecting Darth Rupert's practise of hording and gouging.

24 Responses to ‘JJ Abrams to adapt Stephen King's '63' for Hulu’

beeso has opinions thus...

Posted September 24, 2014
I would argue. Still haven't finished it. Maybe i'm too young for all the Kennedy stuff to be cool?

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insomniac mutters...

Posted September 24, 2014
Coinkadinkally, the quiz on stuff.co.nz had a question on this very book today. Unfortunately I do the quiz before reading CBG so I got it wrong - wrong on so many levels.

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schlepstar would have you know...

Posted September 24, 2014
As an aside, Interesting you draw the distinction between accessing Hulu to that of accessing the US Itunes. Hulu is available for only $8 a month, with a with a VPN account. The endless merry-go-round of the 'legality' of such a set up in Australia has and continues to be debated of course.

thetick would have you know...

Posted September 24, 2014
It's legal. And encouraged by two government panels so far. :) Hulu TOS might not agree, but they have no legal recourse as far as I am aware beyond switching it off for you.

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Barnesm is gonna tell you...

Posted September 24, 2014

and while it sounds cool, I have reservations after watching the adaption of Mr King's 'Under the Dome' for television. Shudder that was awful, and I don't mean it was full of awe either.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan is gonna tell you...

Posted September 24, 2014
"The Dome wants us to say it with flowers."

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JG puts forth...

Posted September 24, 2014
I loved Stephen King's book, Under the Dome. I bought it and his On Writing some time ago. About time I read some more of his work, and 63 (year I was born in) and The Stand sound like great books to further my King reading.

I watched a couple of TV episodes of Under The Dome but they didn't live up to the vision I had from the book. I found what the TV series mediocre. Film rarely manages to capture the integrity of a great book. The characters in the TV series seemed flat against the book's characters. I didn't watch more after a couple of episodes, as I didn't want to be further disappointed with the memories I enjoyed from the book.

I loved JJ Abrams Lost TV series and own the DVD set. It's shame that Under The Dome doesn't live up to the high bar set by Lost.

Anyway, still a huge fan of JJ Abrams.

JG

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan is gonna tell you...

Posted September 24, 2014
"The Dome wants us to eat less fried food."

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Blarkon mumbles...

Posted September 24, 2014
Isn't he a bit distracted with Star Wars?

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BigWillieStyle swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted September 24, 2014
Off topic. I just got back from my lunch hour, strolling around the streets. Didn't see one Aussie getting beheaded by Islamic terrorists. Huzzah!

Halwes swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted September 24, 2014


<A href="http://www.smh.com.au/comment/how-the-iphone-made-us-junkies-20140924-10kjj0.html">http://www.smh.com.au/comment/how-the-iphone-made-us-junkies-20140924-10kjj0.html</A>


Off topic too

insomniac reckons...

Posted September 24, 2014
Remain ... ah ... remain alert ... ah ah ... alert citizen Willie ... citizen Willie ... ... ... ... ah ... Team Austraya

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Michael ducks in to say...

Posted September 24, 2014
You could, as you know, with some non-illegal trickery sign up to Hulu.

...and get SNL/Daily Show/Colbert/Brooklyn nine nine and a bunch of other stuff to boot.

Like Louie C.K. say, take my money and give me the thing!

Lulu mumbles...

Posted September 24, 2014
Brooklyn Nine-Nine is being shown on SBS. The others unfortunately are not.

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Kay Orchison reckons...

Posted September 24, 2014
*hoarding

Though Newscorp could arguably be described as a horde

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Halwes reckons...

Posted September 25, 2014
Mr B, Do you do book signings at a bookshop or somewhere when your new books come out? I

John Birmingham reckons...

Posted September 25, 2014
Good Question, H. I'd normally do a full tour, but since the first one comes out on Dec 23 I don't see that happening. I can easily get around Brisneyland, of course. And I have a few shops I routinely sign for up here. But outside of the deep north, I dunno yet. Maybe I'll tour the middle book?

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan would have you know...

Posted September 25, 2014
Tour the middle book in California. Have you seen LA?

Therbs mutters...

Posted September 25, 2014
LA is a great big freeway

Halwes mutters...

Posted September 25, 2014

If you want to tour Arnhem Land give me an e-mail. You might not sell many books, not many people can read around here, but you'd certainly catch a lot of fish! Accommodation and food ( fish and more fish) supplied

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan mumbles...

Posted September 25, 2014
Put a hundred down and buy a car.

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Evan mutters...

Posted September 25, 2014
If Frank Darabont were doing it I would be excited.

With Abrams, I just dread the imminent desecration of something I loved. He's already done it to me with Star Trek.

pi puts forth...

Posted September 25, 2014
Really? I'm definitely an ol' trekker, and I loved the new star-treks. The first one was an absolute cracker IMO.

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S.M. Stirling would have you know...

Posted September 28, 2014
It's definitely one of his best books... right up until the giant earthquakes where the universe somehow inexplicably takes its revenge for revisions of history.

I mean, please, "there are Things We Are Not Meant To Do/Know"? Oh, please.

It's a pity, because for me that spoiled a great book. The period flavor is impeccable and the research is great and the writing is good.

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Dr WTF

Posted August 27, 2014 into Telly by John Birmingham

Sometimes a comment is worth pulling out and running as a standalone entry even if I disagree with it. Or sometimes, especially if I disagree with it.

Simon Garlic's rant about the first Capaldi episode is so drenched with ranty spit balls it seemed a shame few would see it at the end of comment thread half a week old.

So, here's Simon's take on the first ep of the new Doctor:


This episode existed for one reason – to reassure younger fans of New Who that it’s OK for the Doctor to be old. Clara gets upgraded from being a piece of the set to being an audience surrogate. Still not a character though.
The dinosaur out of its time, lost, all alone. “The world is grey, everything I knew is gone.” We get it.
The robot out of its time, repairing itself for millennia, all alone. Come on Moffat, we get it.
The broom speech. “There’s nothing of you left”. The face in the tray bit showing 12 his own face. Fuck Moff, give it a rest.
Vastra’s veil speech. “He’s old. The young face was just an act. If you can’t accept that he’s older, you are a shallow person.” Jenny to Clara. “I don’t just like her, I love her, even though she’s different.” If you are just “liking” him for his looks, you don’t really love him. MOFFAAATTTTTT
Clara: fucking everything in the whole episode. Oh, she’s only 27? Gee, thanks for that Strax, that line didn’t half stand out like dog’s bollocks. “Hey Doc, that’s not the only grey hair”, and just in case you haven’t been slapped in the face with it enough, here comes a call from Clara’s boyfriend so that Matt Smith can explain to the audience – I mean, Clara – that it’s OK for the Doctor to be old and grey.
The “Clara doesn’t understand regeneration and wants her young Doctor back” plot was inexplicable shit. She has more understanding of Time Lord regen than anyone! She spent time with three different Doctors of different ages simultaneously in the 50th, and thanks to the crap Impossible Girl crap story arc crap she’s the only companion to have personally encountered every different incarnation of the Doctor across 2,000 years. Shit. Fuck you Moffat, lazy writing.
Episode highpoints: Capaldi, “times like these I miss Amy”, eyebrows.
Episode lowpoints: everything else.

At a higher level this episode embodies something even more annoying – Moffatt’s twin tendencies to
a) regurgitate his own previous plots and storylines - S08E01 is basically S02E04 “The Girl In The Fireplace” (writer: Steven Moffatt) re-done to emphasis the Doctor's age. Clockwork robots in a broken time-traveling spaceship trying to harvest human bodyparts to perform repairs, the Doctor struck with the reality that he's ancient and immortal and personal relationships with humans just don't work; and
b) make the Doctor a timetraveling Sherlock Holmes. Moffatt is lead writer and showrunner of “Sherlock” and “Doctor Who” at the same time, and it shows. Not in a good way.

14 Responses to ‘Dr WTF’

BigWillieStyle is gonna tell you...

Posted August 27, 2014
Just to backtrack about 5 posts - got me a copy of Andrew McMillen's "Talking Smack" book. Very good read, recommend to all Burgers. Particularly liked Lindy Morrison's tale about stealing Nick Cave's heroin accidentally on purpose.

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Spanner has opinions thus...

Posted August 27, 2014
As much as I enjoyed that ep. I found something vaguely irritating about it. Then I realised that I find all new Dr's irritating.

(I found all the Matt Smith eps hugely irritating and couldn't wait for him to regenerate but that's a separate topic )

I'm not sure it was bad writing bashing us over the head as Simon says rather it was a regenerated Dr ep. Many of them have been ham fisted, such as the the Jon Pertwee to Tom Baker ep in Robot or the somewhat more eloquently done in the Tom Baker to Peter Davidson ep Castrolova but all leave us with a sense of dislocation from a beloved character. The dislocation makes our immersion in the world that little bit less deep and we can start to see the flaws in the writing that we would otherwise forgive.

@simongarlick swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 28, 2014
Hey, I didn't say it was BAD writing, I said it was LAZY writing. It was a script with a Message that reused plot elements from one script and ignored discontinuity with others.

Take your point on the dislocation; I remember watching Doc 5 having a moment lying under that bit of the Zero Room and thinking "WHAT THE FUCK IS THIS SHIT BRING MY DOCTOR BACK". And I luuuuuuurved Tennant and I wanted to hate Smith. But man S05E01 The Eleventh Hour was pretty damn good. (You couldn't not love Matt Smith after his very first episode. Somehow the youngest actor managed to play the most elderly-FEELING Doctor.) I don't think a regen episode by its very nature HAS to feel like a flawed script.

Having Karen Gillan in a sexy police outfit helps, of course.

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2014

Summary - Dr Who is overblown twaddle. Yep.

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@simongarlick would have you know...

Posted August 28, 2014
"Ranty spit balls"? :)

Hey don't get me wrong, Doctor Who fanboy since forever, Moff is in the pantheon of heroes just for being part of the team that brought DW back, love his writing in just about everything. But I think he's overreaching himself being writer and producer on two demanding, intelligent, high-profile shows at once. Every time I see something Sherlocky in Doctor Who I start foaming at the mouth, because the DW fanboy in me wants Moff to eat sleep and breathe making DW as awesome as possible, not be swanning around the world doing distracting trivial shit like winning Emmy awards for Sherlock. (I'M LOOKING AT YOU TOO, GATISS)

The fact that Deep Breath felt so preachy to the audience while so self-evidently recycling the "Fireplace" story with Sherlocky stuff thrown in just felt lazy. All it lacked was a timey-wimey bootstrap-paradox resolution to be a satire of a Moffat script.

I also want Moff to lift his game because Season 7, from the Snowmen to regeneration into 12, was IMHO the weakest season since the reboot. The character of Clara in S7 was a fembot with three settings - running, puzzled, or smirking. Like I said in the first rant, that inane Impossible Girl story arc made her a plot device, not a character. And the central character of the Doctor suffered for it, much love for Matt Smith but Lord knows he didn't have much to work with given S7's scripts.

And if I see the goddamn Weeping Angels anywhere in S8 I swear I will make a critical post to the Internet, BY THE GODS I SWEAR IT.

PS: Garlick

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted August 28, 2014
Best episode of Dr. Who I have seen since the series went out of production in the 1990s.

FormerlyKnownAsSimon ducks in to say...

Posted August 28, 2014
ha! After Mr Garlick's posts that tickled my ribs. I kinda agree with Garlick though - a friend pointed out: what's with the slapstick gobshite?

I think Capaldi will carry it on well. I have a personal theory one of the reasons they upgraded the age of the actor playing the doc is that they want to bring in a bit of love action with River Song again and social conventions can't have a protracted (more involved) love story arc with a young male and an older female.

Feel free to shoot me down in flames - my attention span during the last doctor who series was waning a bit so may have missed some crucial plot points.

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MickH is gonna tell you...

Posted August 28, 2014
WHO...THE...FUCK....IS...M.O.F.F.E.T.T.!!!!!!!

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Aaron ducks in to say...

Posted August 28, 2014
I agree that Moffat is over stretched but to be fair a regen episode is always going to be hamstrung by the need to accommodate any new viewers starting with that series. At the end of the day it's a family friendly show. And yes yes yes to no no no of reoccurring Cyber men daleks and angels etc. it's done

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NBlob mumbles...

Posted August 29, 2014
Sorry Chaps & Chapette, I lost interest in the Dr in 1978.

However * Off Topic Warning* I would be most pleased for a discussion stimulated by the rather excellent Mz Razors latest piece. Wherein she flogs the left like only one who knows us intimately can.

As per usual it is stuffed to the gills with potty talk, adult themes and the quite excellent "The Congress is a vat of infinite Stupid kept simmering to a salmonella heat by the fuel of thrice-digested bullshit."
http://badhostess.com/naughty-step/

damian mumbles...

Posted August 29, 2014
On the internet somewhere is a photo of me at a Dr Who fan convention in 1983.

I always find Ms Razer's floggings entertaining when directed at others, and perhaps even when captured in the spotlight glare. A little like being whipped with a used condom, it might sting a little but doesn't bruise, smells funny and there's the risk of some unpleasantness involving bio-hazards.

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robW puts forth...

Posted August 30, 2014
I didn't like Dr. Who when I moved to Scotland in 1978 and was too stupid to figure out that the Scots had fuses in their electric plugs. I watched Dr. Who because the light from the "Telly" was the only light available in the corporate flat besides that from the refrigerator. It wasn't Star Trek and William Shatner enough for me, or maybe I was just freaked out having arrived myself, not in a phone booth but in a TWA 747 and a weird BA flight where they only served tea and spoke funny.

I didn't care for Dr. Who when I moved to England in 1982. I was sophisticated then and understood the concept of fuses in electrical outlets. I even understood drinking tea by that time and could perfectly understand a highlands accent, and I could drive on the left side of the road with practiced ease and I knew the streets of London like the lines on the back of my hand and I knew all the best (or worst) pubs in Earls Court. Still, Dr. Who sucked.

I didn't like Dr. Who when it was on PBS in LA in 1985. Didn't like it when it was on Denver Rocky Mountain PBS in 1990. Saw it in Mexico City in 1995 or so. In Spanish. Lasted about 2 minutes. Couldn't keep awake watching it on KQED in San Francisco in 2000. Could care less about it in 2005 when I saw it in a hotel room in New York City. Hated it in another hotel room in Phoenix in 2008. Didn't like it in yet another hotel room in Florence, Italy, in 2010 when the Doctor was speaking in dubbed Italian. In 2012 (or was it 2013) it was supposed to be "All New!" and I watched 3/4ths of an episode on BBC America. Can't remember where I saw it. Denver. Perhaps Oklahoma City. Maybe Houston, or possibly that steamy evening in New Orleans where the air conditioning was going full blast and the condensation was dripping down the hotel window.

While channel surfing the other night I momentarily landed yet again on BBC America. Some show about cops in 1880s New York who speak with a Cork, Ireland accent. I can tell a Cork accent from a mile away. The announcer said that Dr. Who was up next. I couldn't contemplate it.

I turned it off.

I must be yet another Yankee barbarian who doesn't know fine SF when he sees it. Still, JB, would like to spend a few hours with one of your new novels soon. Much better than the Doctor, I'm sure...

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Mark reckons...

Posted August 30, 2014
Mofatt is great. It's all about flow. Even when the plots are blatantly utilitarian what makes a great writer is their flow. Like Gaiman, Falkner, Twain (insert great writer whose plots you don't like), when their plots fail/bore, their writing voice still comes through like a sack of literary bricks on your grown-men-complaining-about-a-children's-show heads. With Moffat it comes through in his dialogue.

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Halwes is gonna tell you...

Posted September 1, 2014

I thought that last night's Dr Who was <A href="mailto:cr@p">cr@p</A>. Since Simongarlick so kindly intellectualised it for me I've been looking for flaws. The worst thing is that he is right about lazy plots and stupid Daleks. I still like the new doctor and I think that he has potential but I'd like more substance to the deduction of problems in the plot. It's no fun if it's predictable. I mean who didn't know that that Dalek was going to turn nasty again after he was repaired? I suspect that the "good" Dalek is going to be a recurring theme and what about all that heaven stuff?

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The new Doctor

Posted August 25, 2014 into Telly by John Birmingham

Worked until 9.30 last night, trying to get the current manuscript out the door today. Rewarded myself with the latest episode of Dr Who on iView. I've only watched a handful of Smith/Tennant eps so there was a lot of backstory and fan service I knew I was missing in the opening scenes. (Who are these lesbian crime fighters, one lizard one not?)

But still, I enjoyed it hugely and thought the storyline about identity and its loss was deftly handled. Capaldi was great, although I did keep waiting for him to burst into obscenities. Maybe next week when the Daleks show up.

For now, it's back to that manuscript.

30 Responses to ‘The new Doctor’

Halwes would have you know...

Posted August 25, 2014

I also think Capaldi was a great doctor and the storyline was original and interesting. It got a bit soppy a couple of times but overall excellent.

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Murphy_of_Missouri mumbles...

Posted August 25, 2014
I've got to admit that Dr. Who has left me cold since it went out of production in the 1990s. I've tried to warm up to the new series but without much luck.

I did watch the last bit of the new episode last night and I have to say his performance was first rate.

"I'm not your boyfriend," is a line I think many of us have been waiting to hear for years.

Respects,
Murph
On the Outer Marches

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JBtoo is gonna tell you...

Posted August 25, 2014
It struggled to hold my attention, probably because I was a huge Matt Smith fan and it will take a while to accept Capaldi in the role. It was the same for me when Tennant took over from Ecclestone.

The best bit about the "I'm not your boyfriend" line was the follow up that he was reminding himself, not her.

Barnesm would have you know...

Posted August 25, 2014

+1

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Miss maudy puts forth...

Posted August 25, 2014
I really struggled with the Matt Smith incarnation at first, mainly because he reminded me of someone I used to work with who was a completely gormless git who also used to flirt clumsily with ALL the girls, not because of anything wrong with his Doctor. I think it took me all of his first season to get my head around the fact he wasn't Azza with a dark wig!

So, I think I was more open minded this time to a new Doctor... I enjoyed the episode, I enjoyed all the past references, and there were a couple of moments toward the end where I started to feel like Peter Capaldi would be alright (when they went for coffee was one of them; and I liked the not your boyfriend line as well.)

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Therbs puts forth...

Posted August 25, 2014
Apparently there were quite a few disappointed whovians who had woken up for the 5.00 A.M. broadcast on Sunday. That's 5 fkn A fkn M on fkn Sunday. I'd be well disappointed too getting up that early for something which ain't live sport. Deserve whatever they get.

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Aaron asserts...

Posted August 25, 2014
I have liked all the incarnations so far but Matt smith took a while as I think the writing has suffered since Russell Davies left as main writer after the end of tenant. The 50th anniversary ep got me back on board. I have a great feeling about capaldi. For next doctor I would live to see one who still solves with his smarts but is more uncompromising with his enemies. Ps and no more bloody daleks. They are done alright.

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Aaron asserts...

Posted August 25, 2014
I have liked all the incarnations so far but Matt smith took a while as I think the writing has suffered since Russell Davies left as main writer after the end of tenant. The 50th anniversary ep got me back on board. I have a great feeling about capaldi. For next doctor I would live to see one who still solves with his smarts but is more uncompromising with his enemies. Ps and no more bloody daleks. They are done alright.

Dave W puts forth...

Posted August 25, 2014

I can live without a cliffhanger season-ender featuring Daleks and/or Cyberman, too. In fact, I think I heard that they've aimed for storytelling is different and has a slower pace. So I hope this means that the baddies will be different, too.

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Bunyip reckons...

Posted August 25, 2014
The dinner invite / larder quip was golden.

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Barnesm would have you know...

Posted August 25, 2014
And excellently recapped by the indomitable Girl Clumsy.

Darth Greybeard is gonna tell you...

Posted August 25, 2014
Girl Clumsy is totally domitable.

Barnesm puts forth...

Posted August 25, 2014
would you prefer the unsinkable girl clumsy?

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Boscolamb asserts...

Posted August 26, 2014
I'm slowly warming to Capaldi, but I hate the Scottish accent. To my American ear, entire sentences he'd rush through sounded like jibberish. Even rewinding the DVR didn't help. I think I'm not alone in this. I hope producers take note.

Halwes would have you know...

Posted August 26, 2014

Come off it. No one butchers the queen's ( god save her fascist soul ) english like the yanks. I have to use the sub titles when I watch American shows.

Lulu swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 26, 2014
I haven't watched the whole thing yet, but to my ears it sounded as if Capaldi had toned down the Scottishness slightly. He was much more Scottish on The Thick Of It (and like JB I keep waiting for him to turn into Mr Sweary),

Barnesm ducks in to say...

Posted August 26, 2014
Might I suggest this

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Aaron is gonna tell you...

Posted August 26, 2014
Watched it last night. Pretty happy overall but again moffat who has great ideas seems to rely on blind luck for his characters yo escape rather than pulling the rug out with some clever sleight of doctor hand. But capaldi brings it so looking forward to it.

Lizard lesbians? Yeah why not

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 26, 2014
There is something about lesbians in general that I've always considered a touch reptilian.

Not that there is anything wrong with it.

Blarkon asserts...

Posted August 26, 2014
Not at all.

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Halwes mumbles...

Posted August 26, 2014

Gees in two days you've pissed off Maoris and lessos PNB. Let's hope you never run into a 16 stone Maori lesso. Although that would be an encounter I'd like to watch.

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Blarkon mumbles...

Posted August 26, 2014
Thought it was the weakest "new Doctor" episode since the reboot. Ultimately the show stands or falls on the writing and for every "Doctor's Wife" and "Blink" there's been a lot of chaff. They've got a great lead, but the question seems to be is anyone still able to come up with new material that leverages that to its fullest extent?

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Sudragon has opinions thus...

Posted August 26, 2014
Interesting Fact: Capaldi has an Oscar.

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damian reckons...

Posted August 26, 2014
I vaguely remember that when Colin Baker came in there was talk of a move to a "darker" doctor, though of course this did not happen. I suppose in the meantime they've done this with the John Hurt doctor, but Capaldi seems like the best opportunity for some morally ambivalent inner tension since Hartnell (who did that rather well, as I understand it).

It's sort of a pity there wasn't more than one telemovie with Paul McGann. Not that I'm saying it'd necessarily have been awesome or anything (it could, or it could flop badly... hypothetical alt history stuff there), just it could have provided some neat "improving" stories for the canon.

damian swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 26, 2014
I should say - one telemovie and one 5 minute teaser to introduce Hurt.

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Aaron asserts...

Posted August 27, 2014
I liked the john hurt war weary doctor and wish they would go there more but they don't want to hurt their family friendly brand I guess.

I think some more writers with Moffat at head would make a lot more blink quality episodes.

I hope they do a spin off lizard lesbian chronicles.

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simongarlick puts forth...

Posted August 27, 2014
This episode existed for one reason – to reassure younger fans of New Who that it’s OK for the Doctor to be old. Clara gets upgraded from being a piece of the set to being an audience surrogate. Still not a character though.

The dinosaur out of its time, lost, all alone. “The world is grey, everything I knew is gone.” We get it.

The robot out of its time, repairing itself for millennia, all alone. Come on Moffat, we get it.

The broom speech. “There’s nothing of you left”. The face in the tray bit showing 12 his own face. Fuck Moff, give it a rest.

Vastra’s veil speech. “He’s old. The young face was just an act. If you can’t accept that he’s older, you are a shallow person.” Jenny to Clara. “I don’t just like her, I love her, even though she’s different.” If you are just “liking” him for his looks, you don’t really love him. MOFFAAATTTTTT

Clara: fucking everything in the whole episode. Oh, she’s only 27? Gee, thanks for that Strax, that line didn’t half stand out like dog’s bollocks. “Hey Doc, that’s not the only grey hair”, and just in case you haven’t been slapped in the face with it enough, here comes a call from Clara’s boyfriend so that Matt Smith can explain to the audience – I mean, Clara – that it’s OK for the Doctor to be old and grey.

The “Clara doesn’t understand regeneration and wants her young Doctor back” plot was inexplicable shit. She has more understanding of Time Lord regen than anyone! She spent time with three different Doctors of different ages simultaneously in the 50th, and thanks to the crap Impossible Girl crap story arc crap she’s the only companion to have personally encountered every different incarnation of the Doctor across 2,000 years. Shit. Fuck you Moffat, lazy writing.

Episode highpoints: Capaldi, “times like these I miss Amy”, eyebrows.
Episode lowpoints: everything else.


At a higher level this episode embodies something even more annoying – Moffatt’s twin tendencies to

a) regurgitate his own previous plots and storylines - S08E01 is basically S02E04 “The Girl In The Fireplace” (writer: Steven Moffatt) re-done to emphasis the Doctor's age. Clockwork robots in a broken time-traveling spaceship trying to harvest human bodyparts to perform repairs, the Doctor struck with the reality that he's ancient and immortal and personal relationships with humans just don't work; and

b) make the Doctor a timetraveling Sherlock Holmes. Moffatt is lead writer and showrunner of “Sherlock” and “Doctor Who” at the same time, and it shows. Not in a good way.

Dick puts forth...

Posted August 27, 2014
Tell us what you really think, Simon. Stop holding back.

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JG swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 30, 2014
I like Capaldi as the new doctor.

The first Dr Who episode screened in November 1963 when I was five months old.

I have faint memories of watching Dr Who on black-and-white TV. Some memories of Jon Pertwee (and maybe the doctor before him), but Tom Baker (long scarf doctor) is the one I think I saw the most of, even though he annoyed me.

I remember that Catweazel used to screen right before Dr Who on TV. Both pretty scary shows for young children. I was terrified of the Daleks.

Not really a keen Dr Who fan, but I may start watching the odd show now again. I enjoyed the new series pilot with Capaldi. I saw him interviewed by Julie Z before it went to air, so I guess I already grew to like him before the show went to air. He's refreshing and kinda sexy.

JG

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