Interesting - it's been ages since I've seen this - but I seem to recall one fanboy theory that "Captain Cook" was meant to represent Star Trek.
That fanboy must have been deeply delusional. I can't see how that comparison even remotely makes the slightest bit of sense.
I dunno. I'll have to wait until I see it next, whenever they get aorund to releasing it on disk.
T.P. McKenna, who played Captain Cook, much earlier had appeared in "DEATH AT BARGAIN PRICES", one of the earliest Mrs. Peel episodes of THE AVENGERS. (It's the one about the department store.)
...I remember seeing the novel of this - Did I have it ????????? - in a Lyle Stuart edition .
Got this on disk last night, some thoughts below:
1)"Segonax" almost sounds "Second Acts". A coincidence probably, but an interesting one.
2)I never had the fear of clowns that people often report having had when they were kids. However, I never found them all that amusing, and I can see how they can easily be made quite creepy. Certainly, the guy playing the Chief Clown here manages it quite well.
3)Actually, Sylvester McCoy gets to show off quite a bit of his own clowning skills in this.
4)I looked it up last night, and the idea that Captain Cook represents Star Trek comes from The Discontinuity Guide, by Paul Cornell, Martin Day and Keith Topping. It seems to be mostly based on the idea of "Captain Cook" sounding a bit like "Captain Kirk" and the whole notion of Kirk being a "galactic explorer" of sorts. I don't see it, myself. Too me, the Captain and Mags seem almost like funhouse versions of the First Doctor and Susan, the self-serving old guy and the "girl with something extra".
5)The Whizzkid is a rapidy of obsessive Doctor Who fanboys - the writer has said as much. "Although I never got to see the early days, I know it's not as good as it used to be, but I'm still terribly interested."
6)"Is there no end to you weirdos?" Well, no.
7)Thanks to them juggling the schedule around, Ace picks up the earring that we've already seen her wearing in "Silver Nemesis".
8)The Gods of Ragnarok are not really all that impressive. "I have fought the Gods of Ragnarok all through time." Which is why you've never mentioned them before?
9)"You're just an aging hippy, Professor."
10)"Anybody remotely interesting is mad in some way or another." However, being mad does not guarantee that you are interesting.
I thought this was kind of a so-so story. Some interesting moments, but not overwhelming.
The seventh Doctor's era was a mixed bag. The show was trying to prove itself after it's initial cancellation during Colin Baker's term, and everyone behind the scenes was still trying to get use to the new, shorter format foisted upon them by the BBC.
But I found the Doctor's possible connection to Merlin the Magician, and the hints that there may have been more to Ace, let alone her future, quite interesting, and wish the seventh incarnation had lasted longer.
But am I the only one to have ever used the term Doctor McCoy, when referring to the seventh actor in the role?
Tracy is one of those people who are disturbed by clowns, but I was much more disturbed by the “rappin’ ringmaster.” Say, did you notice that Ace is wearing the Fourth Doctor’s scarf in the first scene of episode one?
I knew there was something about this episode being broadcast out of order, but I didn’t really know what it was until I read the above posts. Because the stories are released in such random order anyway, I can’t say I really noticed. Perhaps if I ever watch them in broadcast order the problems will be more apparent.
Captain Cook bears about as much resemblance to Captain Kirk as Forbidden Planet does to The Tempest, which is to say none at all. Well, there was that one “brave new world” scene in the movie, but other than that, the resemblance (Robby the Robot = Caliban) is purely superficial.
Generally speaking, I don’t like stories translated to other media. (I don’t like movies based on comic books, I don’t like comic books based on movies, etc.) “The Greatest Show in the Galaxy” struck me as a comic book story that didn’t translate particularly well onto the small screen. (Besides, there is a point at which the BBC’s shoestring budget ceases to be “charming” and crosses over into “cheap.”) The “allegorical” nature of the plot works best, I think, on the printed page. I think the dialogue when the Ringmaster replied to everything the Doctor said in rhyme would have worked better in print (and the setting could have been drawn more convincingly).
…aaaaaaand another Doctor’s adventures are now complete.
Next Up: The last of the First Doctor! (Sep 11)
[Unless you care to read an example of bad customer service, you may skip the rest of this post.]
Yesterday I made my selection and presented it for purchase. The clerk said to me…
“‘Doctor Who.’ Does this have anything to do with the new show?”
“The original was on the air from 1963-1989, then it came back in 2005.”
“This is a different guy!”
“Yes, there have been eleven different Doctors.”
“Oh, this is old!”
“It’s a little cheesy in comparison to the new show,” I volunteered.
[At this point, she apparently became an expert.]
“Oh, yeah, it’s cheesy… it’s way cheesy! This may have been okay in the ‘70s or if you are a kid, but today? As an adult? Uh, uh… no way.”
I just stared at her with an expression I hope conveyed, “Did I ask for your opinion?”
Then she added, “Have a nice day,” and our transaction was complete.
That clerk story is bizarre. First, she doesn't know if it's connected, then she says "It's a different guy" (there's been 3 on the new show!), then she suddenly "became an expert"-- WHA'???
Would have served her right if you thanked her for her opinion of it being "WAY cheesy", dropped it on the counter and walked out. (Especially if the manager was watching.)
Two more notes from watching the extras:
1)I hadn't realized how close this story came to going "Shada" - apparently, they found asbestos in the studio they were going to use and it had to be shut down. JNT was determined not to lose the story and kept it alive while they worked out the idea to film the story in an actual tent in a BBC parking lot.
2)“The Greatest Show in the Galaxy” struck me as a comic book story that didn’t translate particularly well onto the small screen."
Funny you would say that, Jeff, because on the commentary they kept coming back to what a great graphic novel this story would have made.
It's not just me!