I still have a Doctor Who icon!

I used to post about TV here all the time, but I really haven't had much to post about lately. I think the last show I watched more than a sporadic episode or two of was ... Agent Carter. In March.

However, the new season of Doctor Who (series eight) is up on Netflix, and that's one of the ones Orion and I like watching together, so we watched the first three episodes tonight. I got the general impression from fannish osmosis that a lot of people didn't like this season, but I absolutely loved it. Actually, I think I had more fun tonight than I have watching the show since Donna left.


I also talked about this at the time, I think, but I didn't really click with Eleven or Amy. I warmed up to them after awhile, and I DID enjoy it a lot more after Rory started traveling with them, because the Doctor traveling with a married couple was a fun and different dynamic. There were episodes in there I wholeheartedly loved! Plus, there was River Song. But it never felt like "my" era of the show, and the last season in particular, after Amy and Rory left, I spent more time looking down at my computer than up at my TV.

But I loved Twelve immediately. There is something about him that really works for me, I think in part because he's so different from the previous 2000s-era Doctors. He's a bitter, sarcastic asshole. He's not nice. He's rude and he's weird and he can be incredibly cold and even cruel. He feels old. He feels alien. And I am reveling in him -- and in his relationship with Clara.

I've gone from being indifferent to Clara as a Companion, to absolutely loving her. I fell harder for her in half the first episode than in the entire previous season. I love how she doesn't hesitate to call Twelve on his shit, and he calls her on hers. They're each other's reality check, and a mutual insult-fest, and aren't even entirely sure they like each other, but still have each other's back. It really does remind me of the Doctor and Donna, which I think was my favorite (up to now) Doctor/Companion relationship in New Who. (And also the only other one that was explicitly platonic, as this is.)

I also really love that their relationship has somewhere to go. This is something we haven't really seen yet in New Who, the Doctor and Companion not really liking or trusting each other, and staying together mostly out of loyalty to the Doctor's past self. (Rose warmed up to Ten a lot faster than this, I think.) The last couple of Doctor/Companion relationships have started off with immediate, mutual fondness. There wasn't a whole lot of tension, not much push and pull. Here, they're very uncomfortable with each other, and they're both having to learn how to let the other one in. I am really looking forward to seeing them build on that.

I'm also finding the episodes a lot of fun. I don't know if the show has new writers or if it's just that I haven't watched it in long enough that the cliches have acquired some new charm, but it feels fresher than last season. Or, at least, it's reveling in its own ridiculousness in a way I'm really enjoying. The Robin Hood episode was AMAZINGLY dumb, but I couldn't stop laughing the whole way through.

Doctor Who is a show where I've never felt particularly inclined to get into the fandom; I just really like watching the show, and maybe watching a vid now and then. I don't really care about the mythology of it. I just want to be entertained. And so far, I'm finding this season tremendously entertaining, and hope it doesn't completely flame out at the end. (I do know two rather large spoilers about this season, which I'm trying not to think about, in particular who Missy is -- I wish I could've stayed unspoiled about that, because it would've been more fun to guess. Oh, well.)

So, yeah, the tl;dr is that I'm really enjoying this season and I hope this Doctor sticks around for a while.

This entry is also posted at http://sholio.dreamwidth.org/1029211.html with comment count unavailable comments.
I stopped watching DW somewhere during S6, but I was fully planning to check out S8 and the new Doctor. But then I suddenly felt hard for BBC Musketeers - where Capaldi plays Cardinal Richelieu - and so had to put it on hold for a while, not wanting it to interrupt the experience. Well, closer to winter, maybe:) Glad you're having fun with it, though!
(btw, I really recommend the Musketeers, if you'd like another show to watch after the Doctor:))
I thought Musketeers was a lot of fun but only watchable if you're not attached to book canon XD
Well, I've enjoyed the book - in fact, it was one of the books I've grown up on and one of the main things that have established my love for everything team-as-family related:) It's just the book and the show are somehow the two pretty much separate things in my brain, idk)) And I really love show's versions of characters.
Yep, I came into it thinking it would follow canon and kept thinking: no! no! Then once I realized I had to treat it as a completely separate work it was a lot of fun :D
Well, even if it's not what I'm watching, I'm really happy you have a new fun thing to squee about! :D (Several people on my flist are watching BBC Musketeers -- I will hopefully get around to it eventually!) I had no idea Capaldi was on it, though I know he's been in a lot of stuff.
That's awesome! I had really soured on the Doctor right about the same time as you, Donna was the last time I enjoyed watching the new DW. But I'd heard about some people watching and enjoying 8th season and was thinking to give it a chance. I know I like the doctor, but I'm worried I won't like his relationship with Clara. Here's hoping I will like it too when I get around to it.
So far, this season really has the feel of the DW that I love best. I hope you enjoy it if you decide to give it a try! :)
I love the Twelfth Doctor to pieces. And I agree about Clara - she's a million times better with him than she was with Eleven.
It's so interesting what a difference it makes, when it's the exact same Companion! I don't know if it's chemistry between the actors or the way the relationship is written or what, but I can't believe the total 180 I've done on Clara as a Companion, and how much I'm looking forward to her continued interactions with Twelve. :D

I do wish the Moffat era built up the background cast as well as the RTD era did, though. At least they have some recurring characters (the Victorian-era cast are always such a delight) but I really loved the larger casts from earlier seasons of the new show; it gave the main characters more opportunities to play off people other than each other.
I think it has to be at least in part the way it's written, because I thought Dalek!Clara and Victorian!Clara were a lot better with Eleven than Present Day!Clara.

And huh, I didn't think the RTD era had a bigger background cast ... Are you thinking about the companions' families, or something else?

(And I like both eras about equally, though in different ways, but one thing I'm really glad about is that at least Moffat doesn't let a new companion be overshadowed by the previous one. Still bitter about Martha and Donna both.)
You know, looking back on it, I'm not really sure why it feels like RTD did better with the background cast -- because if you count up characters, it's about the same ... but, I don't know, I guess I felt like there was a stronger sense of the Companions' lives and pasts, and more continuity from one season to the next, so it felt like the same world, inhabited by the same people. I felt like the parts of the Companions' lives that didn't revolve around the Doctor were more there, somehow, whereas it seems like Moffat puts more emphasis on the time travel and getting-away-from-it-all aspect.

But they both have their strengths and weaknesses. I totally agree with you about Martha and Donna, tbh -- and I think one reason why I had so much trouble warming up to the Eleven era was because I was feeling kind of burned on the show by the way Martha's and Donna's storylines went.
I completely agree with you about the companions' lives - I think that's part of why I took so long to warm up to Clara, actually. It got better this last series, but before that ...

With the continuity between series, do you think that's partly also because RTD never did any real time jumps? (I mean, the Tenth Doctor seems to have lived only for a few years, whereas Eleven's run comprised centuries, even if you don't count Trenzalore.)
I am somewhat looking forward to the new series but my react to the new Doctor is about 180 degrees from yours.

Well, not exactly. I LIKE Capaldi but I disliked everything else, storyline and companion wise. I was so happy when she was going to leave and then so very disappointed when they threw more money at her and she stayed.

That said the trailers for this next season look promising.
I didn't like her last season (or, at least, I was very lukewarm toward her) but her relationship with the Doctor has really been charming me this time around.

However, the nature of Doctor Who is that if you don't like something, just wait a couple of seasons, and it will be different, I suppose! ;)
What bothered me about her and the new Doctor was how they treated Danny Pink for being a soldier. The writers seemed to have a vested interest in degrading them and calling them murderers. It was in at least three episodes. This from a woman who was supposed to love him.

But yes that is true about Doctor Who
What I've been liking about Twelve are the stories. While I liked Eleven, I always felt his episodes moved too fast and were trying way too hard to be whimsical, and there were times when things felt really disjointed and kind of all over the place. With Twelve the episodes have felt more solid, and I've really been enjoying the darker tone it's taken. The past Doctors have always come across as broken but refusing to either admit it or give into it, but with Twelve it's like he's finally accepted the fact that he's pretty screwed up, and now he just runs with it, and I love it :D

Clara... I actually liked her a lot more at the beginning, but her relationship with Twelve and the fact that she's in it more for the adventure than the Doctor (and that she's pretty much addicted to traveling) has really been interesting.