SPOILERS! In which I whine about Doctor Who again

It’s really not Doctor Who‘s fault at all this time.

But, oh boy, I am annoyed.

For tedious practical reasons, we weren’t able to watch Dark Water, the first part of the two-part series finale, on Saturday night when it came out. So instead we carefully avoided all information about it, and sat down as a family to watch it on Sunday afternoon.

And we thoroughly enjoyed it — the sense of mystery, the truly dark horror, the building tension, the series of carefully calibrated clues, and finally the reveal of exactly what the skeletons in the fishtanks were. A moment of shocking recognition, one of the high-points of the series.

Except that some genius at the BBC decided to use this image as the episode header on the iPlayer, so we all knew what was going to happen.

Doctor Who (series 8) ep 11

For heaven’s sake, BBC, how difficult would it have been to pick an image that didn’t give away the entire mystery? Something like this, maybe?

Doctor_Who_Dark_Water_review__Gender_reassignment_and_life_after_death_launch_a_challenging_finale

Or even this, which would have been a clever hint to those who know their history?

7310719-high_res-.jpg

But no. You had to give the whole thing away.

Come on.

8 responses to “SPOILERS! In which I whine about Doctor Who again

  1. To be fair to them, that shot was also used in the “Next Time” trailer the episode before, so they could have expected people to already know.

  2. Yes, the fact that they’ll slapped the cybermen all over the bloody trailers did kind of remove any hint of mystery. Gah.

    I’m also a little bit disappointed in the reveal of Missy. And missing a trick, as having a bit of variety would give a bit more kick. They could have kept the Master back a bit longer. It would have been nice for it to have been the Rani. Why? Well, for totally non-fanboy reasons, really.

    Anew Timelord/lady would add a bit more variety. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that rogue timecards like The Rani and the Monk would have “gone doggo” in the Time War, only to stick their heads above the parapet later. and reintroducing them isn’t something that wouldn’t faze a younger audience (the Doctor though he was the last Timelord: he was wrong).

    Other than that though, cracking episode. Let’s hope the final act lives up to it.

  3. Given details of the time war arent’ really known (and it is a ‘fantasy’ show anyway), the ‘rules’ aren’t known; being a time war, you’d think the assault on Gallifrey would be at multiple times, while Time Lords interfered with Daleks also in multiple times.. etc; a big complicated mess. So, single point in time or something, sure, whatever.. but in a culture where many (how many? common or uncommon?) are travelling through time, how could anyone be sure they’re all recalled home? When your planet is about to be wiped out, run for it? We know Time Lords are good at surviving and running (well, some of them, anyway).. whatever, so, yeah, it seems ‘obvious’ that some Time Lords must be out an about; but its a big universe, and a big time scale, who knows where they are.. maybe you just don’t run into them; if tracking the time splicing was possible, the Doc would be tracking the Master all the time…

    So a ‘new’ Time Lord would have been fun; heck, even bring back a corrupted Romana or something; or of course Rassilon (but nolonger in Tim Dalton form).. but The Master, oh, he is such a classic delicious treat, they just have to serve him up once in awhile to tickle all of us old timers.

    And I’m okay with that .. the Master is great, and she’s done a deent portrayal so far; I’d rather like to see a meetier non-cheesie Master sometime .. in some of the classic episodes (even the Fice Doctors etc) there were some good delicious moments.. backstabbing, good ‘twilrl your moustache’ evil moments .. not just over the top laughing all the time :)

  4. Loved the line “why would anyone need to collect all these bodies? I feel like I’m missing something”, quite rich. The shape of the 3W logo was also a subtle clue which I managed to miss. I actually had seen the “Next Time” trailer but managed to forget Cybermen were involved.

    Anyone else thought it strange that the name of the doctor that supposedly created 3W was SKAROsa?

  5. Andrew Hickey wrote:

    To be fair to them, that shot was also used in the “Next Time” trailer the episode before, so they could have expected people to already know.

    … which is precisely the kind of dumb move that means we never, ever watch the “Next Time” trailers. In fact the moment the “Next Time” caption comes up, we all erupt off the sofa to hit the off switch. Precisely so we can actually be surprised.

  6. Jeff wrote:

    So, yeah, it seems ‘obvious’ that some Time Lords must be out an about; but its a big universe, and a big time scale, who knows where they are.

    That makes sense in its own terms, but I am pretty sure that in one of the New Who episodes, the Doctor explicitly said that there are no more Time Lords alive in our universe, and that if there were, he’d feel it. (Does anyone remember which episode, and his exact words?)

    And that of course is still consistent with the rewritten canon of Day of the Doctor, since Gallifrey was presumably shifted into a different universe.

  7. According to Mike Taylor’s book, The Eleventh Doctor, during “The Hungry Earth”, the Silurian captive goads the Eleventh Doctor with the assertion that she’s the last of her species, to which he replies: “I’m the last of my species and I know how it sits in a heart” (p.60). Other than that, the Tenth Doctor tended to get a little maudlin about it every so often.

    On the subject of the spoilers, this is basically a BBC curse. Doctor Who is actually luckier than most series in that there is very rarely a “Next Time” at the end of the penultimate episode. Even so, ruining so-called big reveals is still a time-honoured tradition. Going back to season one we knew the Daleks were coming back from the “Next Time” at the end of the eleventh ep… It’s something I think they picked-up from the soaps where various publications would always print who was coming back/leaving/dying/the murderer months before it actually happened.

  8. Thanks, davecw. I remember the “I know how it sits in a heart” sequence very well, as it’s perhaps my single favourite Doctor Who scene ever. But it’s not the one I’m thinking of here. IIRC, the Doctor’s companion (I can’t remember who) specifically asks him whether there might be more Time Lords out there, and he explicitly states that there are not, because he’d know if there were.

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