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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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S05xE02 “Strangers”

 As the narrative of the Tribe moves forward, we begin to understand the depth of fear and mistrust that is built into these individuals, who have lost so much yet continue to move forward. To survive in the post-apocalyptic society, one is forced to make decisions against others quickly and without mercy, which is why Rick Grimes began to implement his “3 questions” routine with strangers.

How many walkers have you killed? 

How many people have you killed? 

Why?

The significance of these questions is not in any right or wrong answer. The importance stems from the honesty behind the answers, because dishonesty holds distinct ramification of not being allowed to join the tribe. The consequences, positive or negative, come from how an individual navigates the answers and reasons behind the question.Each member of the Tribe has had to kill at one time, including the living and/or dead. By contemplating these 3 points, an individual is forced to look inward. What is she capable of? What is she not strong enough to do? And, of course, why?

Spoilers ahead, Sweetie!

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S08xE02 “Into the Dalek”

While I spent the last year or so really, truly excited for the new Doctor, I’m beginning to feel a bit of a let down with series 8. The writing (MOFFAT, I defended you!) has been lackluster and the plot almost nonexistent. Although the Collectress has encouraged me to rant my frustrations, I’m still giving the new Doctor and the new series a chance, and therefore will save my judgements for at least a few weeks from now. There are a few things that interest me in regards to the over arching storyline, so that’s where we will begin.

Spoilers ahead, sweetie!

The Doctor and the Military

Throughout his 12 regenerations, the Doctor has had a tenuous history with military forces. While he and Brigadeer Lethbridge-Stewart remained friends through numerous regenerations, the Doctor is wary of the armed forces, for obvious reasons. He is an alien with a spaceship that contains the technology and history of, not only the Timelords, but the entire universe across space and time. UNIT, as well as other military forces the Doctor has encountered over the years, continuously attempts to exert power over the Doctor, his property and his friends. As Nine and then Ten, the Doctor is suspicious and somewhat rude to soldiers, working with UNIT only when Martha or Rose asks for his help. When he does help the military, it often turns into a standoff, with his TARDIS confiscated and his life threatened by soldiers with guns. Eleven was a softer Doctor and, while he didn’t volunteer his help, he often worked with the military because of River Song and her connection to the Papal Mainframe. At the end of his life, Eleven may have become more than disillusioned by the idea of the military, because of the tense situation on Trenzalore. Soldiers on both sides had a complete disregard for the innocent lives lost in the town of Christmas, while the innocents are the precise people the Doctor is always trying to save. With both sides, the Daleks and the Papal Mainframe, fighting against the Doctor right before his regeneration into Twelve, his personality seems to have taken a dark turn in terms of how he feels about soldiers.

In “A Good Man Goes to War”, the Doctor meets a soldier who dies protecting Amy and baby Melody, a soldier who joined the army to meet him and with whom he inspired when she was a child. Eleven takes the time to talk with her, he doesn’t immediately judge her for her military ties, instead giving her a chance to prove herself as an individual. For him, this is enough to invite her to run with him once again, but, alas, she dies and her chance is lost. Twelve shows us that he is not as forgiving as he once was. In “Into the Dalek”, he meets a soldier who seems to have a good heart. He saves Journey Blue and even works with her team to heal a “sick” Dalek (Who subsequently turns evil as soon as he is healed, leading the Doctor to articulate that a kind Dalek is a sick Dalek. I thought we already knew this?) but, once the adventure is over, refuses to allow Journey to travel with him, even though she proved herself to be worthy. Twelve believes Journey made the decision as to what kind of person she wanted to be as soon as she joined the military. Meaning, Twelve may not believe in second chances as his former regenerations once did. If this bias against the military remains strong in him, Twelve and Clara may have a problem soon enough, because it seems she’s met herself an army man.

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S08xE01 “Deep Breath”

On Saturday, Whovians everywhere (including my own living room) sat in from of the telly to watch Peter Capaldi begin his run as the Doctor on the longest running sci fi show in all of humankind (Chris Hardwick’s words, not mine). The episode after regeneration is always a bit rough, as we are all getting to know this Doctor as not just a renewed version of the Timelord, but also a special incarnation with unique characteristics all his own. It has taken me a few days to mull over what I wanted to do with this series in terms of writing. I don’t particularly want to pen recaps each week, instead I will touch on a few really interesting points and look at the overarching continuity of Doctor Who. Yes, friends, I’m going meta. (Spoilers ahead!)

The Clockwork Droids

Twelve and the Paternoster Gang made a slew of past Doctor references, some of which I got and some of which I missed. Let’s start with the most obvious, the clockwork aliens who use living parts to work themselves and their spaceship. In series 2, the Tenth Doctor, Rose and Mickey Smith met Madame de Pompadour in “The Girl in the Fireplace” and the clockwork droids attempting to harvest her brain to pilot their space ship, The SS Madame de Pompadour. We find out that the ship posing as a restaurant is none other than the Marie Antoinette, the sister ship to the Pompadour, which, although viewers may recognize the connection, the Doctor does not. In “Deep Breath” Twelve cannot remember why the clockwork aliens are so familiar, and leaves the mystery for another day. Amnesia isn’t out of character for a regenerating Doctor. We know that the regeneration process shifts the thinking and interacting skills of the Timelord, and no two Doctors have quite the same personality quirks, including what they choose to remember as important from their previous regeneration. As Twelve might say, the question is not why he doesn’t remember, but who are these clockwork droids and why are they back?

Steven Moffat wrote “The Girl in the Fireplace” in 2006, and we know the writer is aces at long term continuity (may I present you the story of RIVER SONG), so it isn’t surprising that he has an overarching plot point originally addressed eight years ago. Moffat is king of the spiderweb plot, in which he weaves intricate storylines together over a long period of time. Mostly, he picks them back up and blows our minds, and so I am looking forward to seeing how this particular plot point will effect series 8.

Say hello to Dottweets, a prolific meta writer and one of my favorite Supernatural bloggers. She’s penned a pretty interesting piece on Dean Winchester and the Mark of Cain for us to read and contemplate before the season 9 finale, airing tomorrow on the CW at 9pm (just in case you live under a rock and had no clue). Enjoy, and leave some feedback in the comments.

xoxo The Collectiva Diva

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screen cap cr: homeofthenutty.com
screen cap cr: homeofthenutty.com

From the start, Supernatural has had themes about identity, sense of self, and physical transformations. It’s your choices, rather than what you are, that defines you, but Supernatural has also shown the dangers and horrors of losing your innate nature, becoming something you don’t want to be, or weren’t meant to be. It often utilizes body horror, violations to or within the body, to get its themes across or explore characters. In season 9, Dean Winchester, who had always avoided allowing himself to be altered, becomes the storm on these issues this time around.

The mid-season premiere of The Walking Dead debuted this week and boy, was this one a doozy. The intense character development of Carl and Michonne reminded viewers how much the zombie apocalypse has changed those who are living through it.  Carl has traded in the modern comforts of video games, flat screen televisions and chocolate pudding for a hand gun and dry cereal. He spent much of the previous season by his father’s side and only now has begun to break away and question Rick’s abilities and judgement. Carl is becoming a man with his own thoughts and views and it is terrifying. For Michonne, the waste land of post-apocalyptic America has turned her into a zombie-killing machine; she is good with a sword and never hesitates when it comes to slicing off the head of a walker. She is a loner with nothing to lose because she lost everyone she loved long ago.

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Episode: S04xE09 “Walkabouts”