Straight Outta Gallifrey: Season 20

Siskoid, Ashford and the Sutherlands are back to cover Doctor Who's landmark 20th series, up to and including the 20th Anniversary special, The Five Doctors! Companions leave, companions arrive, not to mention every who returns for one last reunion tour. We had a lot of fun covering it.

That's all at Straight Outta Gallifrey, under Episode 140: Season 20

Thanks for listening!


daft said...

The past is a foreign country... I don't spend an awful lot of time cogitating about the specifics of how Classic Who operated, but listening to this discussion of the season, it stirs up a number of random thoughts.

The black/white guardian thing fascinated me back in my youth, even if the actual implementation scriptwise left a lot to desired, Mark Strickson really deserved so much more. Now looking back, much like the Eternal's represented during the recent run, it just seems like there's nothing really substantial creatively to mine from the concept. They're just another supra layer of lightly sketched immortal beings (essentially faux timelords) with little more to do than to dick around with the lives of mortal beings in an effort to help pass the time. They’re story drivers without any real context or emotion, merely existing to artificially prod and poke mortal beings to help drive a convoluted story. And as another podcast conversation I recently enjoyed tabled, being evil really doesn't cut it in 2020, such protagonists either have to be seen as appropriately motivated (story dynamics), or to be shown as realistically delusion (character dynamics), they believe they’re a force for good rather than evil. Twirling moustache villains must have surely been nearly an anachronism in the early 1980s, or perhaps they just had a robust union? ;)

And as any conversation of this season inevitably tables, the enduring problem of the multiple companions. I can readily understand the basic philosophy of J.N.T. to introduce a diverse array of characters to help seed and ratchet up the tension on board the tardis to compete with Coronation Street dramatics upon the other side, but like most of J.N.T. innovations, the implementation rarely goes beyond those initial thoughts. It's the fate of every companion to eventually disappear into the rabbit hole of becoming an everyman (everywoman) beyond their initial promising introduction, but I think the sad thing here is that each companion's character concept could have worked if only they were given the time and space to develop. Even the much lamented Adric, there's no reason why the initial concept of the Dickensian street urchin couldn't have worked upon screen. It reminds me of the successful Baker/Jameson (Henry Higgins/Eliza Doolittle) Pygmalion pairing, later used to similar success by the McCoy/Aldred Doctor/Ace dynamic. What it requires though is actual space to develop. Instead, the characters here are reduced to having infantile squabbles on board the tardis at story’s commencement before one inevitably goes off and effectively sulks in their room, reduced to having an 'away day' onboard the tardis because the writer’s have thrown their hands in the air in general despair trying to provide something meaningful for each of the three companions to do. It not only suggests that there's a problem creatively, but also an unnecessary additional wage expense each season, supposedly one of the key areas J.N.T. has traditionally been applauded for.


Blog Archive


5 Things to Like Activities Advice Alien Nation Aliens Say the Darndest Things Alpha Flight Amalgam Ambush Bug Animal Man anime Aquaman Archetypes Archie Heroes Arrowed Asterix Atom Avengers Awards Babylon 5 Batman Battle Shovel Battlestar Galactica Black Canary BnB 2-in1 Books Booster Gold Buffy Canada Captain America Captain Marvel Cat CCGs Charlton Circles of Hell Class Comics Comics Code Approved Conan Contest Cooking Crisis Daredevil Dating Kara Zor-El Dating Lois Lane Dating Lucy Lane Dating Princess Diana DCAU Deadman Dial H Dice Dinosaur Island Dinosaurs Director Profiles Doctor Who Doom Patrol Down the Rabbit Hole Dr. Strange Encyclopedia Fantastic Four Fashion Nightmares Fiasco Films Within Films Flash Flushpoint Foldees French Friday Night Fights Fun with Covers FW Team-Up Galleries Game design Gaming Geekly roundup Geeks Anonymous Geekwear Gimme That Star Trek Godzilla Golden Age Grant Morrison Great Match-Ups of Science Fiction Green Arrow Green Lantern Hawkman Hero Points Podcast Holidays House of Mystery Hulk Human Target Improv Inspiration Intersect Invasion Invasion Podcast Iron Man Jack Kirby Jimmy Olsen JLA JSA Judge Dredd K9 the Series Kirby Motivationals Krypto Kung Fu Learning to Fly Legion Letters pages Liveblog Lonely Hearts Podcast Lord of the Rings Machine Man Motivationals Man-Thing Marquee Masters of the Universe Memes Memorable Moments Metal Men Metamorpho Micronauts Millennium Mini-Comics Monday Morning Macking Movies Mr. Terrific Music Nelvana of the Northern Lights Nightmare Fuel Number Ones Obituaries oHOTmu OR NOT? Old52 One Panel Outsiders Panels from Sheena Paper Dolls Play Podcast Polls Questionable Fridays Radio Rants Reaganocomics Recollected Red Bee Red Tornado Reign Retro-Comics Reviews Rom RPGs Sandman Sapphire & Steel Sarah Jane Adventures Saturday Morning Cartoons SBG for Girls Seasons of DWAITAS Secret Origins Podcast Secret Wars SF Shut Up Star Boy Silver Age Siskoid as Editor Siskoid's Mailbox Space 1999 Spectre Spider-Man Spring Cleaning ST non-fiction ST novels: DS9 ST novels: S.C.E. ST novels: The Shat ST novels: TNG ST novels: TOS Star Trek Streaky Suicide Squad Supergirl Superman Supershill Swamp Thing Tales from Earth-Prime Team Horrible Teen Titans That Franchise I Never Talk About The Orville The Prisoner The Thing Then and Now Theory Thor Thursdays of Two Worlds Time Capsule Timeslip Tintin Torchwood Tourist Traps of the Forgotten Realms Toys Turnarounds TV V Waking Life Warehouse 13 Websites What If? Who's This? Whoniverse-B Wikileaked Wonder Woman X-Files X-Men Zero Hour Strikes Zine