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S08xE11 “Dark Water”

The first of the two-part series 8 finale, “Dark Water” answers a few of the big questions posed to viewers over the last few months, and asks even more. It is no secret I think this season has fallen flat, mostly because it seems the story lines are recycled from better story lines of previous seasons. The writing of series 8 has been a wee bit boring and predictable, with the two most interesting characters–Missy and Danny Pink–not getting nearly enough screen time for me to stay interested in the disjointed episodes of Peter Capaldi’s first season as the Twelfth Doctor. While a two-part episode is a bit difficult to gauge at this point, that won’t stop me from discussing decent character development for Clara, Moffat’s TOO wide net and a slight nostalgia for really good Doctor Who that recently has been eating at me.

Spoilers ahead, Sweetie! Repeat–DO NOT PROCEED if you haven’t watched “Dark Water” yet.

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S08xE09 “In the Forest of the Night”

I’m bored. Doctor Who is boring me. Moffat, I have been a staunch supporter of you since “Silence in the Library” but the recycled plots and heavy-handed moral lessons feel a bit tired.

So, I’m going to recap “In the Forest of Night” using images from Doctor Who episodes I actually like. Enjoy!

Spoilers ahead, Sweetie!

***

I am a bit of a music snob.

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Meaning, I regularly turn my nose up at popular music, preferring instead to listen to the tunes that inspire rather than the blather played on the radio or on the charts. The thing is, in 2013, those lines were blurred, and not in a rape-y, Robin Thicke sort of way.

I not only gorged on my usual obscure, artsy music, but I happened to fall in love with some of the hottest albums released on 2013. Here are the 10 albums I listened to obsessively in 2013 and will continue to bump in 2014. If you haven’t heard of the band or the album, click the links, check out the videos and give ’em a listen.

I hope you will find something on this eclectic list that catches your fancy.

xoxo

The Collectiva Diva

The Music

1) Born to Die the Paradise Edition by Lana Del Rey

Released in November 2012, The Paradise Edition of Born to Die is a double album with 8 extra songs in addition to the original Born to Die discography. Lana’s voice is ethereal and her lyrics are hardcore. She is a perfect mixture of a Lolita seductress and a ride or die chick. The singer reminds me of that bad ass party girl I know from the streets of Hollywood; as comfortable piss drunk at a house party in burbs of West Covina as she is lounging by the roof top pool at The Standard. Interested in watching a 27 minute short film set to the tune of Paradise? Check out Tropico, starring Lana Del Rey as Eve, a stripper and other archetypal roles she’s bloody good at playing.

“Yayo”

The Time of the Doctor

Written by Steven Moffat

The Collective gals have been dreading this episode ever since the BBC’s announcement that Matt Smith was leaving Doctor Who back in June. For those of us who fell in love with Eleven fairly soon after he and his bumbling TARDIS crashed into Amelia Pond’s garden shed back in April 2010, the Timelord’s regeneration proved to be as emotional and as satisfying as we knew it would be. While I have enjoyed watching many different faces play the time traveling alien, Matt Smith was my Doctor. The Doctor with whom I began the journey through the time vortex and the one who sparked my interest in the wide Who-niverse of this brilliant television show. Matt Smith played Eleven as an ancient god; fierce and fun, sad and sweet, knowledgeable and knowingly forgetful all at the same time. He protected the innocent, never forgot a face and believed that everyone mattered. This is what led him to Trenzalore. (Spoilers ahead, sweetie!)

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S07xE15 (the 2013 Christmas special)

AKA Raggedy Man, Goodnight

#11 Nightmare in Silver

Written by Neil Gaiman

This is the final installment of the “11 of 11” series and I am a bit sad. I began this series when I heard that Matt Smith was officially leaving DW, and now that it is almost November and with less than a month to the 50th anniversary episode of Who, well, my feels, guys. My feels.

Miss you already, Matt.
Miss you already, Matt.

I don’t want Matt to go! As a newly inducted Wholigan, this is the first time I’ve lost a Doctor on the linear time line. If you’ve know my “New to Who” story, you know that I didn’t watch Doctor Who in order, I jumped around in the series, finding episodes that entertained me, all the while desperately trying not to fall in love with the show. It was an unexpected love affair, and it wasn’t until River Song showed up in series 6 that I realized I’d inadvertently become a Whovian. I love David Tennant as Ten, don’t get me wrong. I, too, swoon over the fangirl favorite and adore every episode in which he sexily runs around, fighting nefarious aliens, falling in love with Rose, showing off to Martha and laughing with Donna. I cry when I watch “The End of Time” and never want to see him go. But Eleven. Eleven is the Doctor who fell in love with River Song. He is the Doctor who laughs away the pain of being Ten, Nine and the others, while remaining immensely powerful. He is still the Timelord Victorious, but with a bow tie and new best friends. Eleven never forgot life as Ten, he just refused to fall into a pattern of despair and self loathing. Eleven allowed himself to fall in love with River, to create a family in the Ponds and who, when that family is finally lost, discovered something to live for in the mysteries of the Universe and of Clara Oswald. Matt Smith has played Eleven’s ridiculously huge story arc fearlessly, with finesse that makes the role look easy. He goes from dark and intense to silly and childish in a matter of seconds, never afraid to utilize emotion, physical humor or emotional pain to drive the character forward. Peter Capadli definitely has bigger-on-the-inside shoes to fill. No one thought Matt could do it, and then suddenly, the show is an American hit, a internet sensation and new audiences across the globe are falling in love with time travel and the TARDIS, as Britain has been for years. But Matt Smith is moving on, Whovians. There’s no doubt he will do well after Who. He is young, attractive (in a Timelord-y sorta way) and has range. This episode, Nightmare in Silver, proves it. So, goodbye Eleven. You will be missed, mourned and meme-ed for many years to come.

Episode S07xE13

AKA The Episode Eleven Kinda Loses His Mind

#10 The Rings of Akhaten

written by Neil Cross

Finally, a semi-new episode of Who! We have crossed into part 2 of series 7 and get to meet the current DW companion, Clara Oswin Oswald, the Doctor’s Impossible Girl (played by Jenna Louise-Coleman). We only have this and one more episode in the 11 of 11 series, and I had a really difficult time picking series 7 episodes to rec, until I remembered this one. Although we have seen Clara in 3 episodes prior, Rings of Akhaten is the companion’s first visit to another planet.  Audiences are introduced to time and space travel through Clara’s eyes, and it is spectacular. The setting is brilliant, the dialogue, moving and Clara reveals her fierce bravery and already-complete loyalty to the Doctor. I am excited to focus on a Neil Cross episode, as well. The British writer has penned some of my favorite tv shows and films, such as Luther  on BBC One starring Idris Elba , Mama with Jessica Chastain, and two episodes of DW in series 7, this and Hide. Cross often writes horror and suspense, so this particular episode is very different than his usual fare, but impressive, nonetheless.

Alien life abounds on Akhaten this time of year.

Episode S07xE07

AKA The Episode That Reminds Us of the Magic in Doctor Who