Doctor Who: The Mad Man In A Blue Box Returns

Fanghawk

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Doctor Who: The Mad Man In A Blue Box Returns

Doctor Who Season 8 draws to a close and Peter Capaldi cements his legacy as a truly spectacular Time Lord.

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Jadak

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My only real issue with this episode is... Why do they need dead bodies?

Tthe traditional reason that a Cyberman is a cyberized person is because they aren't strictly an AI, cyborgs not robots. In other words, they utilize the mind of the individual in their process, thus they need a human body.

However, this plot quite clearly defines that they are 100% digitizing human personalities to be dumped into Cybermen bodies, so why bother using human bodies at all? What possible use could there be for leaving a human skeleton at the core? Just build your bodies and upload a mind.
 

elvor0

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I am just going to copy-pasta myself from the unoffical thread. And likely save a lot of people there from doing the same thing:

Awful. Absolutely fucking awful. The only thing I liked about that episode was the fact that I don't have to watch Clara and Captain fucking boring again. Hoo bloody ray. I mean I wasn't expecting gold because Moffat, but come on, when your audience is guessing that Danny is going to come back as a cyberman, overcome it with love and save the day, you've got problems pal.

Where do I start?

-Cyberman were naff, they didn't even kill anyone. They just doddered around, got out"logiced" by fridge logic, which they even aknowledged and still doddered about till Cyber-Danny shot them. Then they blew themselves up a crappy display of disregard for...any narrative structure, consistancy or quality control. They even screwed up the narrative of the episode they were in. Earlier, Cybermen explode and disperse a cybercloud, when the plot demands, they explode and instead burn up the cybercloud.

-Where the buggery did the Cyberbodies come from? "Nanomachines" would've worked fine, but no, it wasn't that. And if this new technology can create a Cyberbody, why bother with the dead, why not just take over everyone? Why the need for the personality in the Nethersphere at all? They don't need the personality, they need the brain. Which would've obviously been rotting but never bloody mind, "that's getting in the way of my concept which I have in no way fleshed out"; says Mr Moffat. But then, this whole "digital" thing eschews the need for either, as they've clearly surpssed the need for bodies or brains.

Why were the people in the Nethersphere given the option to delete their emotions? Why not just delete them and keep them in cyberspace till you need them? They're not fucking going anywhere.

-The scene where Danny and Clara were giving The Doctor shit and the show was on their side when he was telling them NOT to activate the bloody Emotional Inhibiter. Instead of trying to reason with them after they'd abandoned reason, logic, common sense, having encountered The Cybermen before, especially fucking Clara, what he should've said was: "E fuckin nuff, you need to learn to shut your cave, pick up any weapon you can find and twat the buggery out of him!"

Of course this is the Clara show so it did fuck all when they did activate it.

-Emotional Inhibiter. Yeah. Fuck off. Everyone knows what it does by now, but hey screw that! They could've actually done something with this, given The Master said about her putting Clara with the Doctor in order to fuck him up (yeah she basically said that, meta, right?), a moment of tragic folly, The Doctor gives into Clara, showcasing The Masters point, Clara switches it on, Danny snaps her neck. (And there was much rejoycing), The Doctor languishes in The Master plot actually coming to fruition, feels be had. Then y'know, The Doctor can actually solve the problem with wit, cunning and intelligence, rather than the bollocks we got.

-The power of fucking love. FUCK OFF. You fucking hack writer. Learn to use your 45 minutes fucking productively! You've been doing this for 4 fucking years! I knew it was coming but still. ARGHH!

-Missy, I was all up for Missy, she seems a bit quirky but she turns into a cartoon character in this episode, like that friend that's all "Oh I'm soo random!" "Look how EEEEVIL AND BANANAS I AM!". Simmons' Master was a bit zany, but at least he was still "grounded". Moreover, her wanting to be "friends" makes no sense. The Rani would've been much better for this role (and perhaps she was going to be originally, we will never know).

-The Brigadier. Yeah....kinda really didn't like him popping up. I liked the Brigadier, but it's a naff cameo for people who know who he is, that sort of craps on the character, and a pointless attempt at a tear-jerker for people who don't. Also, why did he stick around at all?

To save The Doctors soul? The Doctors killed people before, lots of people, he wiped two civilizations off the face of the map. Tennent killed plenty of people with his own hands. Sure, it's a bit different with The Master but still, so what if The Doctor kills him? When you've murdered an entire planet, one villian isn't going to tip your afterlife scales.

-The kid. Yeah, bring the kid back for feel good fun and bonus feels points! Get out. On the plus side, I was expecting Danny to come back again, so that's kind of a bonus.

+Nick Frost as Santa. Huzzah!
 

Biran53

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Fairly solid finale with a couple of hiccups. I thought the pacing in the UNIT plane was too brisk, as a lot of plot is just dumped onto the viewer. But otherwise, it is definitely a satisfying finale thematically and emotionally. Probably the most solidly conclusive wrap up I have seen from revived Doctor Who. CyberBrig was a potentially offensive cameo, but I think its handling was ultimately good taste, and a cute send up to a classic character.

I think the biggest surprise was how the story was actually rather straightforward. In addition to the story peeling back to be less about Missy and the Cybermen and more about the self-inflection on the Doctor's part, and what he means to his companions. I liked the subtle bait and switch
 

Fanghawk

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This whole season was just so disappointing. Capaldi is a good actor, but his Doctor is the opposite of everything I loved about the show when I started watching. He's just another sad, grumpy guy. I loved how positive and happy and excited Eccleston and Tennant could be. They loved seeing new things and meeting new people. I really don't buy that Twelve actually enjoys anything about travel since he doesn't like anyone besides Clara.

The finale was better than everything else this season, but there was practically no build up. An occasional thirty second reminder that Missy exists is not development. It's hard to really care that Missy is The Master because there is almost no connection to Jon Simms master. We didn't see her regenerate. They barely even talked about it. She's just suddenly there and being "bananas". She could have been any crazy Doctor Who villain and it wouldn't have changed anything.

EDIT: And I just now remembered that Missy "died" at the end of this episode. It was so dumb. Not only was there nothing to it (Just there, then not) to make the scene memorable like Jon Simms death in The Last of the Time Lords, it's completely toothless because it's already a foregone conclusion that she's not actually dead. So much blah. Good performance! Bad writing.
 

MiskWisk

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I find the entire episode to be rather toothless. The Doctor did nothing for the entire episode and in the end the situation virtually resolved itself. The acting was quite good and I did enjoy the interactions Missy/The Master had with people. At the end though, the entire thing felt like it was filler, placed in to just add another episode count with the only thing happening being the very end where The Doctor left Clara behind. It was not worthy of a finale as I'd rate Eccleston's, Tennant's and even Smith's (whose finales I didn't terribly like on the whole) were far better.
 

kailus13

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So I'm guessing they rescue Danny next episode? 'cause there's still the whole "time traveling great grandma" thing and all.

Almost missed the bit at the end. I was just about to turn it off when I heard the knocking.
 

jabrwock

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elvor0 said:
Earlier, Cybermen explode and disperse a cybercloud, when the plot demands, they explode and instead burn up the cybercloud.
The way it seemed to be explained, only the cybermen in the church were carrying the nano-cloud, ready to disperse, that's why there were just enough to cover every major city.

Why were the people in the Nethersphere given the option to delete their emotions? Why not just delete them and keep them in cyberspace till you need them? They're not fucking going anywhere.
If they delete them willingly, you don't end up with the problem of previous converts, where a strong will can resist the deletion. If it's voluntary, there's no resistance.

-The power of fucking love. FUCK OFF. You fucking hack writer. Learn to use your 45 minutes fucking productively! You've been doing this for 4 fucking years! I knew it was coming but still. ARGHH!
I saw that coming a mile away, and groaned. But at least it was canon. It's not the first time strong emotions like love or duty have overriden Cyberman control.

And while it's a little sad that Jenna Coleman's Clara (who was exceptionally well-developed this season) won't be a part of it, we'll soon have another Doctor who better reflects this new era in the Doctor's life.
So what was Santa talking about then?
 

jabrwock

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Tanis said:
I'm kind of amazed they killed off 'bow tie UNIT' girl.
When I saw Kate's shoes, I assumed they were River's shoes from the black archive, and that she would survive due to techobabble powers. But then they turned out to just be a red herring.
 

elvor0

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jabrwock said:
elvor0 said:
Earlier, Cybermen explode and disperse a cybercloud, when the plot demands, they explode and instead burn up the cybercloud.
The way it seemed to be explained, only the cybermen in the church were carrying the nano-cloud, ready to disperse, that's why there were just enough to cover every major city.
Well I would go with that, but that just seems odd. If you have the technology to be able to replicate your army, why would they not all be equiped with this technology? You blow one up and so many more rise from your dead.

That and I seem to remember the Doctor saying on the Plane that the particles of Cyberman were able to replicate themselves. Feel free to correct me there though, as I can't access iplayer due to living elsewhere and was only able to watch it on TV.


jabrwock said:
Why were the people in the Nethersphere given the option to delete their emotions? Why not just delete them and keep them in cyberspace till you need them? They're not fucking going anywhere.
If they delete them willingly, you don't end up with the problem of previous converts, where a strong will can resist the deletion. If it's voluntary, there's no resistance.
This is true, however, given that they're not flat converting living bodies or even real people but rather using digitized versions of dead people, I wouldn't see that as an issue, if something is digitized you can alter it to your hearts content, because they're not really them.

They were clearly capable of influencing how they felt and which memories they remembered last episode, plus the fact that the technology to delete their emotions in the first place exists shows that it's perfectly doable and I don't see why they needed co-oporation. If they're given the option and they /don't/ do it, what happens then? Danny can't be the only person in there who didn't delete his emotions.

jabrwock said:
-The power of fucking love. FUCK OFF. You fucking hack writer. Learn to use your 45 minutes fucking productively! You've been doing this for 4 fucking years! I knew it was coming but still. ARGHH!
I saw that coming a mile away, and groaned. But at least it was canon. It's not the first time strong emotions like love or duty have overriden Cyberman control.
Which I don't like either >< The only place I felt it was okay was with Craig(Or whatever he was called) and Stormageddon, due to being mid conversion.

However, I'd say it has more precident to work before due to them using living people. It feels wrong here because of the afmorementioned digital issue.


Mcoffey said:
EDIT: And I just now remembered that Missy "died" at the end of this episode. It was so dumb. Not only was there nothing to it (Just there, then not) to make the scene memorable like Jon Simms death in The Last of the Time Lords, it's completely toothless because it's already a foregone conclusion that she's not actually dead. So much blah. Good performance! Bad writing.
Not only is it a foregone conclusion, Moffat actually confirmed that all she was missing was saying "You haven't seen the last of me!". Which is a shame, because as much as I like The Master, Simm's Master had a fantastic end to the character. It was wrapped up very, very nicely.
 

medv4380

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I didn't like the change back to procedural episodes this season. The Horror episodes didn't reach the level of The Library, or any of the Weeping Angles episodes. They tried, but they just couldn't get there. Tenant was better at the Procedural stories, and Matt was better at the Serialized version of the Doctor.

I was expecting Capaldi to go into a fairly serialized story about finding the Time Lords. That was only hinted at in the end.

There was a math equation he was working in at the beginning of the series that he couldn't finish. I was expecting Pink to be the one to help him finish it, and make the Doctor eat his own arrogance in regards to Pink being a soldier so they could get on with the Galifry plot. Why else emphasis that Pink was a math teacher. Instead we get a stereo type soldier with self sacrifice to beat over The Doctors head, and the audience.

If they were going to give Missy the role they did then they needed to foreshadow it in the Monster Under The Bed episode. We should have seen Missy as a child, and actually had the child friendship with The Doctor. They could easily have made part of Missy's madness the fault of Clara grabbing the leg.

Then there were the memories he stashed into his watch that he then handed off to some random stranger, and never revisited that point.

All those could have, or should have been hints at a deeper plot that didn't go anywhere. Just going "dark" without progressing any real plot is pointless.
 

jabrwock

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elvor0 said:
Well I would go with that, but that just seems odd. If you have the technology to be able to replicate your army, why would they not all be equiped with this technology? You blow one up and so many more rise from your dead.

That and I seem to remember the Doctor saying on the Plane that the particles of Cyberman were able to replicate themselves. Feel free to correct me there though, as I can't access iplayer due to living elsewhere and was only able to watch it on TV.
There was some line about only the rich ones in the temple being taught this new ability I think.


This is true, however, given that they're not flat converting living bodies or even real people but rather using digitized versions of dead people, I wouldn't see that as an issue, if something is digitized you can alter it to your hearts content, because they're not really them.
Limitation of the technology perhaps? Maybe it's easier to get them to do it themselves than try to brute force it.

As to why only convert the dead, that was covered too. Missy wanted an army for the Doctor. If she converted the living, he'd work his ass off to save them. But this lot is already dead. So there's a chance he might justify to himself that they're ok to use. At least that's under the Master's logic.
 

faeshadow

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Here's my main issue with the plot:

Cybermen don't work like that. Never have.

To make a Cyberman, you rip the brain out of a LIVING body, then put the brain into the cyber body. The only exception is in cases of emergency when they need to mass convert very quickly, but it never comes out right anyway.

I've had this issue with Moffat's idea of Cybermen ever since all the way back in Series 5 when that cyber head opened up and there was a skull inside. I thought Moffat was a fan of the show since childhood. How could he mess up such an iconic enemy as the Cybermen? Where did this magic cyber rain that mysteriously wraps corpses in metal and brings them back to life BS come from?

On another issue, I take exception to Moffat's notion of how the Master would behave if he became a woman. Really, Moffat? You think that once the Master became a woman, she'd dive at the Doctor to shove her tongue down his throat, repeatedly call him "honey", tell people he's her "boyfriend", talk about how the Doctor has her hearts, and just basically fawn all over him like a lovesick puppy? That's what the Master becoming human means to you, Moffat?

No. Just no. Stick to writing the Doctor and the Master as male. You obviously can't write women.

On the plus side, Danny and his judgmental BS are finally dead and gone. I started off liking him, but he just got worse and worse. Still, he did manage to have some moments of redemption, like when he sacrificed his chance to get back with Clara to send the boy back. Okay, there is the issue of Danny killing a child in the first place, but...whatever. He made it right and that's better than nothing.

The winner of this whole finale, though, is Twelve. I've been fond of him all series, even if I sometimes wondered what was going on in his head, but this finale finally wrapped up all the weird threads of his personality and weaved them into a cohesive whole that Capaldi performed magnificently.
 

faeshadow

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kailus13 said:
So I'm guessing they rescue Danny next episode? 'cause there's still the whole "time traveling great grandma" thing and all.

Almost missed the bit at the end. I was just about to turn it off when I heard the knocking.
The theory 'round the internet is that the Orson Pink guy is already in the making by way of Clara being pregnant.

I'm not sure what I feel about the theory that Clara's already pregnant, but...it's a theory. I personally figure that the timeline just glossed over that bit once it no longer was going to happen, but it's not an illogical theory.
 

gorfias

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The whole afterlife angle doesn't work at all for me. I just let it flow over me and not think too much about it. I too was very bothered by the murder of bow tie girl.
 

delroland

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They'll probably just bring Danny and Osgood back in the Christmas special. "What do you want for Christmas," indeed.
 

Oskuro

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The episode had potential and good ideas... but I felt it was really clunky in execution. Lots of people standing around talking, even when it doesn't make much sense, like at the beginning, with Missy and the Doctor talking while the Cybermen and UNIT show up, or at the end, again, just standing in the graveyard talking, no threats, no action, no interesting shots... Just people in costume awkwardly advancing the plot.

And the offing of Osgood felt very callous. Its not the first time a fell-good secondary character has been killed, but the way they went about it left a really bad taste in my mouth, and it didn't mesh at all with the rest of the episode.

This clunkyness, though, I think is endemic of the Doctor Who style, to the point that the Curse of Fatal Death parodies it, by having characters just go on with exposition in a situation that doesn't make sense.


And Cybermen have Borg nanites now? I really liked the Cyberman reveal in the previous episode (even when the trailer kind of spoiled it for me), but... I don't know, they don't feel that menacing.


I also dislike the misdirection the trailers have, twice now, done with Clara. First it was all that "you're never stepping into the TARDIS again" bit painting her as a villain, then the "Clara doesn't exist" bit. Both rather pointless.

The detail of having Jenna Coleman's credits preceded Capaldi's and it being Clara's eyes in the intro was cute though. Heck, for a moment I thought they might actually go ahead and make it so Clara is and actual Doctor regeneration (14th?) which... I would've been kind of OK with.
 

Canadamus Prime

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I enjoyed it. It was the first Moffat payoff where I wasn't left disappointed. Sure there are more than a few criticisms and nitpicks that can be leveled at it, but overall I enjoyed it which is more than can be said about the last Christmas special.
 

Kingjackl

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I'm noticing a lot of critical dissonance between fans and reviewers with this new season. I've seen critics rate it very highly, on par with Matt Smith and Cristopher Eccleston's first seasons, while fans while tell you it's the Clara Oswald show and a load of shite.

I definitely don't agree with the fans on this one, mainly because most of the recurring complaints I've seen come across as vapid and petty, but I also wouldn't say the series has been fantastic. I love Peter Capaldi's Doctor, and his speech at the end of the finale was the perfect capper to his main character arc. However, the finale was a bit rushed (though we've all seen worse from Doctor Who finales), and only a few episodes were what I'd really call classics: Mummy on the Orient Express, Listen, and Flatline. The rest were merely alright or kind of dodgy.

Regarding this reviews biggest complaint about why Danny wanted his emotions wiped, I agree that would be stupid if that were the only reason. The thing is, I wasn't even thinking about that during the scene, because my first thought was that he wanted to lose his emotions because he didn't want to be a walking corpse. Given all the shit Danny went through in the last episode, and the fact he was already considering deleting his emotions before being resurrected, it made sense to me that he wanted to end it all.

I also get the impression he wasn't the only one going through that; the Doctor mentioned in passing the reason the Cybermen were inactive without Missy controlling them was because they were "newborns". What I took from that is that al lot of them were like Danny and were still coming to grips with their conversion.