Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

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Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Sun Jun 27, 2010 12:09 pm

I've been trying to connect all the dots this series, which has taken awhile as there are a lot to connect, but it appears to me that the underlying theme of the whole story arc has to do with memory and its importance in establishing our sense of identity. From the first episode on, we've had continual nods to past Doctors (in particular the first, of who's era this series was quite reminiscent with its ongoing serial approach) reinforcing the idea that this new Doctor is the same man. We've had first Dr Bracewell and then Auton Rory, both artificial creations, achieving a sense of humanity because of their implanted memories, and seen in both Liz 10 and Amy Pond the result of having some of one's memories taken: in Liz 10's case, the Queen and her subjects stuck in an endlessly repeating loop because they had no memory of having done it all before, in Amy's case a girl troubled by the incompleteness of her life but unable to even realise something was missing because she hadn't the necessary information. We saw Vincent Van Gogh temporarily helped out of his depression by the realisation that he would be remembered, and the Silurians, vengeful that their civilisation had been lost and forgotten. Even the Daleks had to go back to their roots in order to survive. And in the end, the universe is saved by being remembered (as the Doctor has been saying for weeks 'what's remembered can come back') and ultimately the Doctor himself is able to return because he too still lives in the memories of his faithful companions, Amy and River-which I can see as a metaphor for the whole post 2005 Doctor Who revival, the show having been resurrected due to the efforts of writers and fans who were themselves 'faithful companions', fans who hadn't let the memory die. Thoughts, anyone? Am I over thinking this?

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Hourglass on Sun Jun 27, 2010 1:02 pm

I mainly agree with you but I thought the entire series was mainly about love and loss.
We had Amy psychologically damaged by the loss of people around her
We had the Queen in agony for the loss of her people
We had the Daleks fighting to prevent extiction
We had Silurians pissed off about loosing their world to man
We had a story about a man at a loss with how to handle love
The Angels were fighting to save their race from being lost.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Sun Jun 27, 2010 1:04 pm

Hourglass wrote:I mainly agree with you but I thought the entire series was mainly about love and loss.
We had Amy psychologically damaged by the loss of people around her
We had the Queen in agony for the loss of her people
We had the Daleks fighting to prevent extiction
We had Silurians pissed off about loosing their world to man
We had a story about a man at a loss with how to handle love
The Angels were fighting to save their race from being lost.
I'd go along with that, too. So, that's two so far...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Mon Jun 28, 2010 8:47 pm

I think you're both right.

Another theme has been people, especially Amy, discovering what they truly love. This is most explicit in 'Amy's Choice' and the season finale, stories which both deal with Amy's relationship with Rory, but it's also there in 'Victory of the Daleks' - the Doctor finds out that he loves Earth so much that he won't destroy it even if it means that refusing to do so lets the Daleks escape. The Daleks were right when they said that compassion was his greatest weakness.

There is also the "greater love" of the Star Whale in 'The Beast Below' (possible Biblical reference there?) and the ongoing mystery of River's relationship with the Doctor. Is she his lover, his killer or both?

Craig stops a spaceship from blowing up the Earth by vocalising his love for Sophie, and the Doctor realises that Rory isn't an Auton when he says that values Amy more than the rest of the universe. It's Rory who's come out of this series looking best and having developed the most.

The dark side of motherly love was shown in 'Vampires of Venice' and 'Cold Blood'. And the Doctor said "I think I love you" to a Silurian who likes dissecting conscious humans in 'Cold Blood' (pun intended), which was creepy and wrong. Vincent van Gogh struggles on with his love of colour and art even though everyone else thinks that he's mad. And Bracewell is saved by the power of lurve.

I could do this all over again for 'dreams', but I'll stop before I flood the thread.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Mon Jun 28, 2010 10:39 pm

Actually, to pick up on something you said there and derail things slightly-is it just me, or has Rory been the find of the series? He began as a seemingly throwaway character but has probably developed more than anyone else, and he seems to be being groomed for better things. I do hope Arthur gets his name in the opening credits next time...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:12 pm

Your comments above have made me want to watch the series! YOU lot should be writing it...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:15 pm

...The REAL Vincent's problem, though, was NOT that he was mad. He was a crap artist, he knew it and THAT made him crazy!!! Remember - he sold ONE painting in his lifetime and that was to his brother. I've sold more than that and nobody buys mine for £25M! But maybe they will when I'm not around... affraid

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Tue Jun 29, 2010 12:24 pm

GBF wrote:...The REAL Vincent's problem, though, was NOT that he was mad. He was a crap artist, he knew it and THAT made him crazy!!! Remember - he sold ONE painting in his lifetime and that was to his brother. I've sold more than that and nobody buys mine for £25M! But maybe they will when I'm not around... affraid
Must admit, I'm not a fan of Van Gogh. Not really into impressionism.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Tue Jun 29, 2010 2:47 pm

Beauty's in the eye of the beholder, innit.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Tue Jun 29, 2010 2:51 pm

Lucy McGough wrote:Beauty's in the eye of the beholder, innit.
Beauty is a large Scotch after a hard day.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Tue Jun 29, 2010 3:40 pm

...forgot to say - how good is "The universe was saved because it was remembered." Genius!

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Tue Jun 29, 2010 3:56 pm

GBF wrote:...forgot to say - how good is "The universe was saved because it was remembered." Genius!
Looking back, this resolution was telegraphed as far back as episode one-now that is clever!

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Tue Jun 29, 2010 3:57 pm

GBF wrote:...forgot to say - how good is "The universe was saved because it was remembered." Genius!
I liked it Smile

'The Pandorica Opens' and 'The Big Bang' made me happy Smile

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Tue Jun 29, 2010 4:04 pm

Lucy McGough wrote:
GBF wrote:...forgot to say - how good is "The universe was saved because it was remembered." Genius!
I liked it Smile

'The Pandorica Opens' and 'The Big Bang' made me happy Smile
To quote one of Who's most bizarre villainesses of the eighties:'I'm glad you're happy'.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Tue Jun 29, 2010 4:20 pm

Oh, I'm very much so! I feel just as I did when I first discovered DW in 2006, back before I got all cynical and despairing. I hope it lasts. I'm listening to Murray Gold tracks on YouTube and remembering why I liked David Tennant's Doctor. There were bad things about the RTD era, sure, but there were also some really, really good things.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Tue Jun 29, 2010 4:40 pm

Lucy McGough wrote:Oh, I'm very much so! I feel just as I did when I first discovered DW in 2006, back before I got all cynical and despairing. I hope it lasts. I'm listening to Murray Gold tracks on YouTube and remembering why I liked David Tennant's Doctor. There were bad things about the RTD era, sure, but there were also some really, really good things.
Yes, mostly the bits that didn't involve RTD.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Tue Jun 29, 2010 10:14 pm

Maybe, but I really liked 'Midnight' and 'Utopia' and 'Smith and Jones' and 'The Runaway Bride'.....(continues)

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Wed Jun 30, 2010 2:42 am

... Luce - you only discovered DW four years ago? Where have you been - traveling through time or living on another planet? farao

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Wed Jun 30, 2010 8:39 am

Incredible though it seems, a whole generation grew up with no knowledge of the world's longest running sci-fi show!

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:33 pm

They haven't missed much though, have they??!!

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:34 pm

...maybe Luce's hairdo will make them tune in to...something... affraid

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:36 pm

GBF wrote:They haven't missed much though, have they??!!
Now that'a matter of opinion...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Wed Jun 30, 2010 6:44 pm

GBF wrote:... Luce - you only discovered DW four years ago? Where have you been - traveling through time or living on another planet? farao
Just young and ignorant Sad

I am now trying to make up for lost time.

GBF wrote:...maybe Luce's hairdo will make them tune in to...something... affraid
What does that mean?

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Thu Jul 01, 2010 12:29 pm

...not quite - it sounded funny yesterday! But you're NOT ignorant... Smile

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Thu Jul 01, 2010 12:37 pm

Ah, but I used to be. I couldn't even differentiate between an Axon, a Zygon and an Aridian!

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 12:42 pm

Lucy McGough wrote:Ah, but I used to be. I couldn't even differentiate between an Axon, a Zygon and an Aridian!
That's easy: Axons are orange and blobby except when they're golden, Zygons are orange and blobby except when they're not, and Aridians are Hywell Bennett with a silly hat on.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Thu Jul 01, 2010 12:42 pm

...well I'm goosed then because I don't what ANY of those - er - things are!!! Wasn't a ZyGon of Battlestar Galactica...or was that a 'ZyLON'? Anyway, I saw some of them at Disney in California a while back...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 12:45 pm

GBF wrote:...well I'm goosed then because I don't what ANY of those - er - things are!!! Wasn't a ZyGon of Battlestar Galactica...or was that a 'ZyLON'? Anyway, I saw some of them at Disney in California a while back...
No, no, that was a Cylon-different species entirely! You need to swwot up on your alien monsters, mate...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Thu Jul 01, 2010 1:53 pm

Axons are shape-changing monsters from 'The Claws of Axos'. They can look like humanoids with golden-masked faces (which reminded me of the angels in 'Voyage of the Damned'), or like huge, horrible walking tumours, all orangey tentacles. They're immune to bullets.

Zygons are shape-changing monsters which look a bit like a human crossed with a single squid tentacle. They're orange and can take on the form of specific humans. There were rumours that Amy Pond might be a Zygon.

Aridians are slender, incredibly fey humanoids from Aridius, encountered by the Doctor, Ian, Barbara and Vicki in 'The Chase'.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 1:58 pm

And when Lucy says 'incredibly fey', what she actually means is that the Aridians were camper than a row of tents at a John Inman convention.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:21 pm

There can't be a race or species out there more 'fey' than Cybermen...is Robo-Cop a Cyberman? He walks with a kind 'swish'... Rolling Eyes

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:24 pm

GBF wrote:There can't be a race or species out there more 'fey' than Cybermen...is Robo-Cop a Cyberman? He walks with a kind 'swish'... Rolling Eyes
You would be a bit fey if you'd had your knackers removed and replaced by a calculator.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:31 pm

tony ingram wrote:And when Lucy says 'incredibly fey', what she actually means is that the Aridians were camper than a row of tents at a John Inman convention.
Well, yes Very Happy

Not that that's a bad thing. The second series of DW has lots of incredibly camp bits in it - like the portrayal of Nero in 'The Romans'.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:42 pm

Lucy McGough wrote:
tony ingram wrote:And when Lucy says 'incredibly fey', what she actually means is that the Aridians were camper than a row of tents at a John Inman convention.
Well, yes Very Happy

Not that that's a bad thing. The second series of DW has lots of incredibly camp bits in it - like the portrayal of Nero in 'The Romans'.
'That strange young woman has been chasing me around the palace all day'.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:00 pm

GBF wrote:There can't be a race or species out there more 'fey' than Cybermen...is Robo-Cop a Cyberman? He walks with a kind 'swish'... Rolling Eyes
Jools and Francesco the Aridians disagree...



...and so does Colin the Axon.


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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:05 pm

Meanwhile, the Zygons want nothing to do with either of them...



...and the Cylons have problems of their own...


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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:42 pm

Surely costumes are cheaper than CGI?

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:46 pm

What is that Zygon doing????!!! affraid

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 5:49 pm

I think the Zygon is demonstrating his opinion of the others in the pics above. And to Lucy: nope, I think CGI saves the production team a small fortune, I suspect it's far easier to create something false (when you can use the basic template again and again with minor tweaks) than to create an actual full size costume or prop. Shame it inevitably looks crap, though.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Thu Jul 01, 2010 8:41 pm

The Aridians face a new challenger for Doctor Who's silver crown of campness: Martin Clunes, what were you thinking?


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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Fri Jul 02, 2010 12:56 pm

Obviously being an average actor, desperate for work...good job the script wasn't comedy - he's not good at that either...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Fri Jul 02, 2010 1:08 pm

GBF wrote:Obviously being an average actor, desperate for work...good job the script wasn't comedy - he's not good at that either...
Oh, I don't know-I liked him in Doc Martin...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by felneymike on Fri Jul 02, 2010 11:20 pm

Men Behaving Badly was the greatest show of the last century. Well, decade. Well, the years it was on. Well, the days it was on. As long as The Fast Show wasn't on the other side, clearly.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Fri Jul 02, 2010 11:47 pm

I liked it better when Harry Enfield was in it. But then, I never liked Red Dwarf as much after Robert Llewelyn joined, either...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Sun Jul 11, 2010 2:57 pm

If Men Behaving Badly was the greatest show of the last century (or even when the Fast Show was on) then I have serious problems - or someone does!!! cyclops

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Sun Jul 11, 2010 3:21 pm

GBF wrote:If Men Behaving Badly was the greatest show of the last century (or even when the Fast Show was on) then I have serious problems - or someone does!!! cyclops
How about 'Men behaving Badly was an extremely watchable show if you were slightly pissed and in a silly mood and nothing else was on'?

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by GBF on Mon Jul 12, 2010 9:55 am

I s'pose so - but I never watched it anyway. The other idiot is even worse than Cloones or Clooney or whatever his name is. you obviously needed more beer! clown

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Sat Jul 31, 2010 11:27 am

The latest series is beng repeated on BBC3 (started last night with The 11th Hour and it appears it continues on Tuesday). Re-watching it, it's interesting to note the little details which tie-in to later episodes: the look the Doctor gives when Amy produces the still fresh apple with a face carved on it clearly (to me, anyway) indicates that he realises it means Amelia's mum hasn't been gone that long, despite Amelia's memories to the contrary...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by Lucy McGough on Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:42 pm

Good. I haven't rewatched 'The Big Bang' yet.

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

Post by tony ingram on Mon Aug 02, 2010 3:41 pm

I'm looking forward to seeing everything I missed first time round...

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Re: Underlying Themes in the Latest Series

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