I posted this in the group "Who is The Doctor" with only one response so I thought I would post it here to give it a bit more visability.

 

Well, seeing as no one else has taken it upon themselves to start a discussion on the subject and my bud, Lee Houston Jr. and I used to chat about this on cbgxtra in the olden days, I thought I would continue the tradition here to discuss the new episodes the week after they have been shown. That is if no one is opposed to the idea. No, well then we will continue. Also try to keep in mind that possibly not everyone HAS seen any given new episode so try and avoid an abundance of spoilers

 

The Impossible Astronaut

 

I have to say that in season 5, I was NOT Matt Smith's biggest supporter and the vibe of the show altogether was a bit too kiddified for my tastes but this episode really changed that HOWEVER, one thing that did bother me was at the VERY beginning. I really appreciated the BBCWales and BBCAmerica (It's new co-producer) for taking the time to remember the late Elisabeth Sladen at the top of the show but why didn't Nicolas Courtney get the same acknowledgment? I realize possibly an oversight and maybe they will give him a memorial at the beginning of the second episode. Some might see that as nitpicking but I think the man earned it.

 

The intro to the show as well has changed with an introductory monologue done by Amy, which while a nice touch for the newer viewer I am still not sure about. Especially keeping in mind that the rumour mill (maybe it has been confirmed, I don't know) that she will be leaving by the end of the season. Also Arthur (Rory) Darvill has gotten a credit in the show's opening, I wonder how long it will be before Alex Kingston gets one as well. Speaking of our favourite Dr. Song, she seems to have a real thing against head wear. In "The Big Bang" she vapourizes The Doctor's fez and in this she shoots his stetson off his head. If she had been around after the regeneration from the first to second Doctor, I would have hated to see what would have happened to his stovepipe hat.

 

One of the biggest cheers I have to give this episode is the performance and the depth that it gave to River Song. Sure, there was the usual "Spoilers", "Hello sweetie" and "The worse day of my life" but beyond that there is a scene between her and Rory which really gives a melancholy to the relationship between River and The Doctor and you get the feeling that on some level when she met the Tenth, she knew it was all over. On a lighter note, we also see the return of The Doctor turning one switch to have The TARDIS one thing which it doesn't and then River flicks another to have it do what he really wanted it to do.

 

Again, on the side of the pluses, we see the return of the amazement that the new characters have when they experience The TARDIS for the first time, such as Richard Nixon gobsmacked when he sees The TARDIS dematerialize and Canton Delaware III going through a BELIEVABLE shock with the "bigger on the inside". I think to some extent the viewers, and through this the writers, have become a bit jaded with the wonders of the old Type 40 and every once in a while you need that WTF moment to remind of just how amazing the whole thing is.

 

NOW THIS MIGHT BE A BIT SPOILERY SO YOU MIGHT WANT TO LOOK AWAY FROM THIS NEXT PARAGRAPH

We have in this story a new alien life form but something somewhat familiar in a sense. A race that you forget if you are not looking at them (Maybe they should team up with the Weeping Angels ;) who have technology we have seen before. Rory and River Song by the end of this episode have found a command center of sorts and looking back, the technology is a re-use of the deck of the ship from the episode "The Lodger". Maybe they are connected, maybe not. Have to wait to see part 2 of the season opener to find out I guess.

SPOILERY BIT OVER

 

Just one or two final observations here: A) Is it just me or is Amy's accent getting thicker? and B) I really wish they wouldn't age The Doctor with the age of the show. As the main action of the show goes on we find out he hasn't been with Amy and Rory for six months and when he later states his age, he is 909. I know he has companions he likes to travel with but seriously, based on this, he has gone through his tenth life in the 4 years we saw him on the TV? I would have maybe left it open and added a few years if for no other reason than to give the novel writers something to work with. At this rate, I don't think he will make 920. But then again, which of us will ;) Mind you it does kind of explain WHY he is a bit gun shy about walking in to a trap having just regenerated about 18 months ago in his own timeline.

 

Anyways, those are my thoughts. Discuss.

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I already replied in the other thread but here it is again...

It seems to me that the Doctor has only been lying about his age lately. Since 2005, that is. And it seems crazy to think that he had eight bodies over 900 years and then regenerated twice within five years of his own time. Remember that in "Rose" he (Doctor Eccleston) was unfamiliar with his own appearance. That indicates a recent regeneration. Is it impossible that he'd burn through a couple of bodies that quickly? No. But it sure doesn't make those incarnations look any better.
 
Now, on to the subject at hand.
 
We watched this with our eight year old and it had the effect it is supposed to. He's scared of the new monsters but anxious to see the next episode. That's high praise right there, I think. 
 
I don't think that Doctor Song hates hats in general. She just hates what the Doctor is choosing. Or she's just plain messing with him. Speaking of River...
 
SPOILERS (MAYBE)
 
We know that River is in prison for killing a man, a great man. We've suspected since that revelation last season that she kills the Doctor at some point. Therefore, I think she is the mysterious figure in the spacesuit who kills the Doctor at the lake.
 
END BIG POSSIBLE SPOILER SECTION
 
I loved where the guard is panicking because River is in her cell...packing. We may not see how she escapes but I'm sure it was brilliant.
I think that is almost too straightforward. Honestly at this point I expect that this older Doctor whose Tardis is nowhere to be seen, is somehow not truly the Doctor.
Regarding the guesses as to the Doctor's killer (and they are just guesses at this point, not spoilers), I at first thought it was the Doctor himself. Then, before I saw the little girl inside it I changed my mind, reasoning that he wouldn't cross his own timeline. I'm not so sure it is the little girl, though. Like Other-Jeff, my money's on River Song.

Except ... the River Song in this story "released herself" from prison, where she's (ineffectually) incarcerated for killing someone.  That means the death that got her jailed occurred in her (subjective) past, and so she presumably knows who it was and how it happened.

I didn't see any evidence in this episode that River wasn't honestly surprised by the Doctor being shot, much less that she knew it was her.

That doesn't mean that it couldn't have been River in the spacesuit.  But it would have to be a future River, and the Doctor's death (at least, the one seen here) isn't the reason she was imprisoned.  And it's the suspicion that "River was imprisoned for killing the Doctor" that made her a suspect in this conversation in the first place.

[Yes, even I could write around that with a liberal dose of the wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff.  But that would be serious cheating.]

Well, a near future River, anyway. Whoever is in the spacesuit is complicit in the Doctor's plot (whatever it is). Perhaps I should have put "killer" in quotation marks. The question at this point is not so much "Who killed him?" as it is "How will he manage to survive?" I think River's victim will eventually be revealed to be the Doctor, whether she's the one in the spacesuit or not, because whatever happens, this is not the "murder" she's incarcerated for. Just my two cents.
Of course, Moffat invented "wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey".
I think Foster Brooks may have invented "wibbly-wobbly."

1) The Doctor always fudges about his age. During the Titanic episode, Tennant gives an age that is younger than the Doctor supposedly was at the end of the classic series. Having an older, future Doctor is a neat twist. Plus, this was the first time he was seen to be keeping a diary similar to River's dairy. And I want to see Jim the Fish.

 

2) My guess is that the future Doctor's TARDIS was somewhere nearby cloaked. This is the first time this feature has ever been seen. So why introduce it if they're not going to use again later on? ;)

 

This was a fine premiere episode. Set up the overall mystery and every line of dialogue was hilarious and heartfelt. The monsters are rightfully scary (they could be in the same room with you, right behind you and you wouldn't know because you forgot them!)

 

I love Smith as the Doctor. He brings an excitable energy to the character that's far different from the hyper energy of Tennant's Doctor. Fezzes, Stetsons, and bowties ARE cool. (And the fact he was sitting on an Edsel. How cool is that?!)

 

Pond was hit-or-miss in the fifth season, but she'd gotten better. And Rory, god bless poor Rory, I'm glad he's survived. Love him (although his wife doesn't swear on their love or their marriage to the Doctor. Instead on the moment the Doctor and her first met. Seems like Rory still needs to worry)

 

Glad some mention was made of Lis Sladen's passing. Would have been as good to see mention made of the Brigadier.

 

Did not know that Mark Shepard (who played young Delaware) and the elder actor who played old Delaware are son and father. THAT is cool.

 

Can't wait for the second part.

Welcome, Bee! Glad to have you with us!

Glad to have you in on the discussion Bee. Welcome aboard. Just one quick note. The TARDIS has been cloaked (although, as is normal with The Doctor, it was unintentional) during the Second Doctor story, "The Invasion" but that was due to a faulty circuit which gets fixed at the end but I do like the scene of Pat Troughton leaning against an invisible TARDIS.

One thing occurred to me last night and that is that River Song may likely be a permanent companion during Matt Smith's run. I realized that she seemed to accept his death in this regeneration as real. If she saw or knew the next one she likely would have made some mention of it and no so quickly have smacked him hard enough to loosen his molars. So either she is playing along as part of a scheme of her own, although I don't trust River to be THAT good an actress (Alex, yes. River, no) or she became his companion (and apparently more) during THIS regeneration.

Also, I agree with the idea of River being the shooter in the story because she alluded to this appearance being the one where things would change for the worse between her and The Doctor.

Trust Moffat to bring back something that occurred 40+ years ago. Love it!

 

I've always had a soft spot for Troughton's Doctor but I don't particularly recall the episode you've mentioned. Many, many moons ago when PBS was airing DW (which is where I first discovered this wonderful show), they used to air Troughton's episodes every weeknight at 11pm. Sadly, I don't remember much of those episodes other than a snippet of dialogue between the Doctor and Zoe where he admonishes her (quite harshly) over how there is no such thing as a death ray! :D

 

River confuses me. I love the idea behind her character, in that she is obviously someone very important in the Doctor's life. But the way her timeline and the Doctor's timeline are at odds whenever they meet gives me headaches if I ponder it too long.

 

The implication seems to be she did kill the Doctor (a Very Good Man) but I don't think this is the moment if she actually did. Else, already being imprisoned for the crime, she would remember the whole scene on the lakeside but obviously she doesn't. (Otherwise, she's a better actor than we give her credit for. River, that is)

 

Then again, based on her previous appearances, she has yet to meet 'her' Doctor. When she first meets Tennant, she recognizes him for being an earlier incarnation of 'her' Doctor. The same with Smith. So their first meeting from her point-of-view timewise (see what I mean?) has yet to be seen or explained. So in one regard, she should feel fairly confident that the Doctor will survive this 'death' because she has to 'meet' him for the first time. Or because everyone keeps harping on how 'time can be re-written', maybe she's actually fearful that her history will be altered and she won't be the one who kills him....maybe.

 

This is one reason why I love Moffat. He plays with the time-traveling aspects of the show oh-so-well.

 


John Moret said:

Glad to have you in on the discussion Bee. Welcome aboard. Just one quick note. The TARDIS has been cloaked (although, as is normal with The Doctor, it was unintentional) during the Second Doctor story, "The Invasion" but that was due to a faulty circuit which gets fixed at the end but I do like the scene of Pat Troughton leaning against an invisible TARDIS.

One thing occurred to me last night and that is that River Song may likely be a permanent companion during Matt Smith's run. I realized that she seemed to accept his death in this regeneration as real. If she saw or knew the next one she likely would have made some mention of it and no so quickly have smacked him hard enough to loosen his molars. So either she is playing along as part of a scheme of her own, although I don't trust River to be THAT good an actress (Alex, yes. River, no) or she became his companion (and apparently more) during THIS regeneration.

Also, I agree with the idea of River being the shooter in the story because she alluded to this appearance being the one where things would change for the worse between her and The Doctor.

It's way too late for me to post a coherent review without possibly letting loose a few spoilers, so for now I'll just say I really, really enjoyed "Day Of The Moon".  Some of the revelations in this episode may be affecting our travelers for the rest of this season, especially the reveal in the last few minutes.  Things are about to get complicated...

 

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