Sep, 2007

SJA: Revenge of the Slitheen – First Glance

Suddenly I want to be a child all over again, to really appreciate the fact that someone up at the BBC thinks kindly enough of me to create and broadcast ‘The Sarah Jane Adventures‘. I can’t help but applaud the effort of cast and crew on the first episode – ‘Revenge of the Slitheen’. I actually appreciated the Slitheen even more by the very fact we only had one splott of CGI – on the first reveal – and then nothing but rubbery suits. Personally, I feel it worked. Yes, CGI created a far more fluid hunting machine, but running around in costumes fitted the feel of a kids show.

The superb camp of the Slitheen in disguise made them delightful to watch and the kids were hardly irritating at all – and provide a nice spread from hyper-intelligent geek Luke to potato-for-a-brain Clyde. As a fan of ‘Doctor Who‘, the continuity of the Slitheen family continuing to seek revenge made for satisfying justification.

And… Sarah. I hope I’m not alone in feeling a special yearning whenever I see the lithe form of dear Miss Smith. I would dare to go so far as to describe Sarah Jane as a bit of a MILF… but must immediately apologise for descending to such grubby depths. She’s marvellous… absolutely wondrous. I can’t believe we’ve had to wait so long for this – and look forward to much more. I’m sure the tie-in with ‘Doctor Who’ and the essential quality of the show in its own right with make all the difference in giving it a long life. And I hope Sarah gets her wish to meet up with the Doctor again in the very near future…

Bubbleshocked

With the imminent new series, the BBC has updated the Sarah Jane Adventures website. Currently contains a few teasers – like a couple of items of alien tech, a tour of the attic, some files on ‘School Reunion’ and the Bane affair and more besides (and to come). Having just rewatched the Bane episode from New Year, I’m really looking forward to this!

Everything Changes Again

Strange how you can grow bizarrely fond of something on second or third viewing, when originally you weren’t completely convinced. I purchased music CDs in the past that led to just such an experience – then I watched ‘Everything Changes’ and ‘Captain Jack Harkness’ last night… and I thoroughly enjoyed both of them. I liked ‘Everything Changes’ to begin with, actually – but I have only a hazy recollection of ‘Harkness’ from the first viewing. I enjoyed the whole story – both in 1941 and the power play in the Hub.

I still, perhaps, find Bilis Manger a bit of an odd sort and not 100% convincing as a threat – but, maybe, I’m thinking about him in the wrong way. Bilis represents an occult threat, rather than a physical one – he has intentions to bring about the end of the world, not do it single handedly himself with tooth and claw. Mind, and I may be missing something here, I still don’t remember an explanation of how he managed to acquire the vital missing piece of the Rift Manipulator from inside the Hub… Does he have a TARDIS or something hidden away, or has he acquired additional dark powers from his otherworld patron that never get explained?

Blinking Hell

Excellent news that the Weeping Angels topped the Scariest Monster polls for readers of Doctor Who Adventures magazine. Without doubt, the quantum-locked killers beat the Manhatten-based Daleks hands-down, and the Human-Dalek Hybrid wouldn’t have even got a look in (who would have been scared of him?). I believe ‘Blink‘ rightly deserves a place in the Doctor Who mythos as one of the scariest and most original episodes ever and writer Moffat deserves a hearty slap on the back, a big bonus and the opportunity to write many more episodes in the future (of whatever Who franchise they can rope him in for!).

The Angels Have The Phone Box

I’ve got m’self a nice new shiny ‘The Angels Have The Phone Box’ t-shirt inspired by the comments of Larry Nightingale from the episode Blink.

a picture of my The Angels Have The Phone Box T-shirt

Making a dark coloured t-shirt proved a bit of hassle… but, I got there in the end. Mind you, I did have to do a little handcrafted augmentation work to get the lettering to stand out better – as, after the application of two ink-laden, best quality transfers, the words didn’t quite have the oomph to show up from a distance.

Next t-shirt – something with the Fruit F*cker from Penny Arcade.

It Brought Tears to Kate Winslet’s Eyes

Stating simple facts about the future of Doctor Who and the certainty of continuation, Jane Tranter, Controller, BBC Fiction, nevertheless highlighted that the series would only broadcast in the form of three specials during 2009, effectively introducing a bit of a gap between Series Four (2008) and Series Five (2010). The information provided, however, did indicate that the specials would star David Tennant in the role of the Doctor, placing in dispute any rumours or Press coverage suggesting he might depart the role soon.

Instead of keeping the information very slight – and making for a sudden panic amongst fans on the future of the show – the news item could have mentioned that the 2009 hiatus relates to a compromise agreement between Tennant and the BBC to allow him time to tread the boards. David will play Hamlet at Stratford from July to November next year (2008) and, therefore, will have limited time for TV work.

Perhaps allowing for this easing of the Doctor Who schedule will allow the associated team to put more time and effort into ensuring the ongoing quality of Torchwood and Sarah Jane.

There have been comments that spokespeople at the BBC have said it’s too early to confirm whether David will return to the role of the Doctor for the 2010 fifth series – but… well, it seems to me if it’s so uncertain, why come up with a compromise of a break year? Why not just replace him? More to this than meets the eye, me thinks…