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Post by halfwise on Sat Dec 22, 2018 6:48 pm

And once again the thread about the silly show Dr Who descends to acrimony.  Rolling Eyes

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Post by Forest Shepherd on Sat Dec 22, 2018 8:17 pm

you cant debate opinion
-Petty

A conversation about a TV show doesn't need to be a debate, it should be a discussion. At least, if those involved wish to have a good time. If we can let go of this desire to prove that our opinions are right above all others, then we'll all have a much better time of it.

I like reading Blue's ideas about the tropes Moffat used for his main female characters, and I also enjoy reading Petty's in-depth analysis of season-long story arcs.

Personally, I think it's only natural that cult-like adoration, as well as investigatorial resistance, should develop around an eldritch mystery as imposing as Moffat's enormous brain. But I see no reason why the two types of person cannot get along.

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Post by halfwise on Sat Dec 22, 2018 8:27 pm

That was one of the most beautiful things you've written, Forest.


Last edited by halfwise on Sat Dec 22, 2018 9:15 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Forest Shepherd on Sat Dec 22, 2018 9:11 pm

Thanks Smile

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"'But whereas we have drunk with thee, who seemest to be a man of lineage, and thou hast been blithe with us, we will tell thee that we have seen one riding south along the Greenway, clad in a coat as green as the way, with the leafless tree done on his breast. So nigh to him we were that we heard his cry as he sped along, as ye may hear the lapwing whining, for he said: "POINT AND EDGE, POINT AND EDGE! THE RED WATER AMIDST OF THE HILLS!" In my lifetime such a man hath, to my knowledge, been seen thrice before; and after each sight of him followed evil days and the death of men.'"

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Post by Amarië on Sat Dec 22, 2018 10:26 pm

That was lovely.  I love you

Maybe we can allow the other side to be Wrong On The Internet for just a little while longer before  correcting them. The who thread version of the WWI Christmas truce.

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Post by Bluebottle on Sun Dec 23, 2018 1:19 am

Forest Shepherd wrote:you cant debate opinion
-Petty

A conversation about a TV show doesn't need to be a debate, it should be a discussion. At least, if those involved wish to have a good time. If we can let go of this desire to prove that our opinions are right above all others, then we'll all have a much better time of it.

I like reading Blue's ideas about the tropes Moffat used for his main female characters, and I also enjoy reading Petty's in-depth analysis of season-long story arcs.

Personally, I think it's only natural that cult-like adoration, as well as investigatorial resistance, should develop around an eldritch mystery as imposing as Moffat's enormous brain. But I see no reason why the two types of person cannot get along.

I'd certainly buy Petty a drink, any day of the.. well.. christmas, certainly. Nod pub

...don't know if you drink, Forest. Nevermind, you can buy me one, since I'm getting one for Petty. Nod

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 2:32 am

{{I am of the opinion, and have done so in the past myself, that if your are being negative about an artists works then its on the person making the claim to provide the evidence to back up that claim. I might have ripped PJ a new one over his adaptations of LotR's but always citing my reasons backed up with evidence quoted from the source.
I think this is of particular importance where the claims being made are accusatory, such of accusing a writer of misogyny or sexism. Then it is definitely on those making such claims to provide proof of it.
We live in a stupid time where opinion is often elevated to and confused with being the same as evidence. It is not.

A good scene Blue as an an example of several things*- Moffat sitcom tendencies- the reactions are played for laughs, and it is purely playful there is no romantic story or sexual undercurrent or tension between 12 and Missy, its a tale of friendship- but she is in disguise in that scene as a Welcome Droid and trying to confuse the Doctor long enough for him not be able to connect the dots before its too late, and its been established 12 is not comfortable when his personal space is invaded, so it fits with the character for 12, motivation is there for Missy and a good chunk of that scene was also improvised on the day by Gomez, particularly the extended nose kissing! By all accounts the actors had a good fun time with that scene. If it were setting up some undercurrent of a relationship, or some sexual tension, or some ongoing situation you might have a point, but it doesn't. Missy only ever acts this way in this one scene when she is trying to throw the Doctor off and is pretending to be someone else.
That the relationship is about friendship and not about sexuality is made nowhere more clear than in the following exchange between Clara and Missy-

CLARA: Mmm. Must be love.
MISSY: Oh, don't be disgusting. We're Time Lords, not animals. Try, nano-brain, to rise above the reproductive frenzy of your noisy little food chain, and contemplate friendship. A friendship older than your civilization, and infinitely more complex.

The authors intent could not be voiced clearer through the character.


If you want to understand Moffats writing you have to view it in the context of his times. Writers develop, mature, but the essentials are usually laid down in their first work. Shakespeare Titus Andromeda is, if it were a more modern piece a 1970's exploitation film- its deliberately violent, sadistic, includes a gang rape and mutilation scene, its written to be as shocking, violent and horrible as possible. Yet the seeds of how Shakespeare would structure narrative, his obvious pleasure in writing the violent bits, and his presentation of female characters can all be seen in their infant form in his earliest works. And the times he was writing in- OTT violence and sex were in vogue- is as informative as to why he wrote Titus as it content.

In the case of Moffat there are two main pieces of work that bear on his Who- the first was Press Gang- its here we find both templates for Moffats lead female characters; feisty, strong, clever, independent, hard working, and yes difficult to approach emotionally because of it. And we also find the first examples of him constructing narratives out of order, in a manner which in his Who writing would be called timey-whimey. At the time he wrote Press Gang (the late 80's into early 90's) female leads were in short supply still, an especially in dramas. Subsequently the character of Linda Day received a lot of praise from woman's groups and female commentators and the show picked up a lot of awards. Ironically at this point in his career Moffat was at the forefront of a group of writers (including his friend RTD) who were trying to increase representation within tv drama. And were part of a zeitgeist of 'strong female'characters' in tv and film that came to the for ein the early 90's.
Moffat was among the first of those writers to hit success with it however in the UK.

His second big hit was Coupling, which was sort of a UK version of Friends but with more of an emphasis on sex, which is often the focus of UK sitcoms, both of the past, such as Granvilles preoccupation with Nurse Glady's bosom and the milk girl in Open ALll Hours or the innuendo filled Are You Being Served? And in the time frame Moffat was penning Coupling you had lad culture in the UK and laddette culture, reflected in the sitcomsof the time such as Men Behaving Badly (whose title should give the idea), Birds of a Feather which features an older female character who is a sexual predator, played for laughs, written by a woman, Two Pints of lager and a Packet of Crisps, in which one of the characters Donna is a bit of a slag (the words of her best friend in the show not me) and where ever other joke is sexual in nature (also written by a woman). Coupling was in this time and was a huge hit and ran for several series and own a few awards.

But what it tells us about Moffats writing as that, like all those other sitcoms which due to the nature of sitcoms reduce a character to a representative ideal- the cougar in Birds, the laddish behaviour in Men Behaving Baldy, or the sexual promiscuity in Two Pints- sitcoms work on stereotypes, its where the humour comes from. All these examples are humour being derived from sex, sexual behavior, preferences or standards, and are and have been the back bone of UK sitcoms for generations. How up front it is fluctuates with the tatstes of the time but the basic element holds true- sex is funny and can be played for laughs.
And it holds true in Moffats Coupling too.

The woman in Moffats Who are in essence a combination of these two experiences of writing shows. From Press Gang we got the strong independent clever female template Moffat uses, and from Coupling we got the one liners and the jokes around sexual behaviour or norms. For Moffat one does not preclude the other- life is dramatic, but its also funny and silly and sex plays a big part in that.

If you take as an example the scene between Amy and 11 at the end of Flesh and Stone its driven in terms of the dialogue by fairly tame, but funny one liners based around the sexual nature of the encounter-

DOCTOR: Amy, listen to me. I am nine hundred and seven years old. Do you understand what that means?
AMY: It's been a while?

And like any good sketch the dialogue and tension increase as it goes along. That's the sitcom part of Moffats writing- that Amy does this because she of her troubled past, the way the Doctor has messed up her life and how she has consequently dealt with that (via several psychiatrists) and by doing what she thinks is taking control of her own situation when in fact she is refusing to take responsibility for her actions (emphasized by it being the night before her wedding) is the drama aspect that plays into the character arc of Amy overall.
The aim in that scene is neither to just have a funny scene about sex- the scene is about the Doctor coming to the realization there is more going on surrounding Amy than he initially understood, and Amy's childhood playing into how she acts as an adult- nor to just have the drama of Amy's underlying issues- but to have both fitting with Moffat's held philosophy that drama, like real life should be funny as well as serious.

Also 11 is at pains to reject all of Amy's advances and put a stop to the whole idea before it starts, Which is what he does. In comparison to 10 and Rose because the relationship in that sense is not important here for Moffat as it was with 10 and Rose. Amy was never going to end up with 11, or in love with 11, confused yes, but that was the point, to highlight her confusion at this point brought on by the Doctors interference in her life.
That Moffat choose to do so in such a scene and by using sex and humour to highlight it comes from his sitcom leanings. Its these two things coming together, his independent female character and his sitcom styling complete with the British preoccupation with talking about sex in indirect or uncomfortable ways mined for humour.

You cannot take a writers work in isolation, much less a single scene, and expect to get a balanced picture of a writers tropes or means. You have to look at the body of work.


ps Blue- don't worry, I would definitely let you buy me a drink! Smile  Nod  drunken  


*edit add- the scene mentioned seems to have been removed by Blue so I include it here just so folk can see what we are talking about-

}}

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Post by Forest Shepherd on Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:29 am

Deeper into the trenches! For glory!

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Post by Amarië on Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:32 am

Quite right. There is Wrong On The Internet and there is Wrong About Moffat. Let's dig a little deeper, we might reach Orwell's house in time for tea.

BBL, if time allows.

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Post by Bluebottle on Sun Dec 23, 2018 11:57 am

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{I am of the opinion, and have done so in the past myself, that if your are being negative about an artists works then its on the person making the claim to provide the evidence to back up that claim. I might have ripped PJ a new one over his adaptations of LotR's but always citing my reasons backed up with evidence quoted from the source.
I think this is of particular importance where the claims being made are accusatory, such of accusing a writer of misogyny or sexism. Then it is definitely on those making such claims to provide proof of it.
We live in a stupid time where opinion is often elevated to and confused with being the same as evidence. It is not.}}

I think there is a misunderstanding to think there is a standard of proof for TV writing. In the end we must watch what we watch, and judge it on the basis of our own background and sensibilities. We have no standards of proof where we can ascertain one way or another who is wrong and right about this matter. You can pick out of context moments, and write your own version of how you have percieved the narrative, but this is plainly subjective. "I saw it a different way than you, and as you didn't see it the way I saw it, you are wrong about what you saw."

As I have said, this is not about how Moffat writers the narrative arc of the characters, but how he displays their relationship. I posed one example, and in only that episode many more moments like that are spirnkled out. Moffat writing of Missy tends to play with the same basic traits as he reserves for his important female characters. Of course, with individual characteristics as well.

To treat discussion about problematic tendencies with regard to gender as the Spanish Inquisition..

All New Who - Page 25 Nobody-expects-the-spanish-inquisition-gif-14-1

..is also problematic in several way. Certainly, I am not the Spanish inquisition, clearly my opinion of problematic aspects in treatment of gender in a very successful television writers work matters little or nought. I am not a fan of the writer, because, among other things, to my mind he has a problematic way of writing gender relationships. Deifying women, but at the same time making them wholly reliant and secondary to his main male character, making them brutal to make them "strong", the quintesssential close, dismissive, unattainable, but alluring character.

Moffat certainly plays around with this throughout the characters stint in his part of the show. You said before something to the effect of "They are friends". This again is a subjective reading of their relationship, and there is certainly enough there to pull them in the direction of a special relationship *wink wink*. (Who would have thought the Doctor and Master would have to become bussom friends just when she was written as a woman?)

Moffat's prominent female characters are all the centre of the universe, the most important thing in the universe, alluring and close, but seemly unattainable, they all can bring the world down with the lift of an eyebrow. The Doctor's affection is presumed, and of course specially reserved for these female, rather than occasionally male, companions. (Blatantly in the case of Amy.) There is this constant theme of, "I can be awful to you, because you couldn't get angry at me, could you." This sort of emotional manipultiveness does not exactly scream strong character, or cast Moffat as a writer of strong female characters..

Clara is a little different, as we discussed above, because Moffat set out to write a not-Amy, but let's be clear here, she still inhibits all the above tropes. He didn't want them to have any overt romantic overtones, but he also made sure to have her have a massive crush on the Doctor to start out with. (Because come on, he's the Doctor, and, hey, he's a boy, she's a girl, it is "what would naturally happen"..) He still had to make her the centre of the universe, and the other base traits are all there to varying degrees.

Some of this is not problematic only in Moffat's work. Making female characters brutal to make them strong seems a common trope in current TV fiction (often by male writers.) In other words, for a female character to be strong, she must display the characteristics we would value in a male action hero. In that equation something has got lost along the way. Take Brienne in GoTs as an example, who's strength lies in killing as many extras as possible. But, clearly, if you have any sense of reality, this is not a strong female character, as the writers are continually praised for. This is a psycopath with a Messianic-complex. A deeply emotionally weak character. Moffat's use of the same trope might not be as on the nose as the hacks behind GoTs, but it is the same trope. Emotionless brutality, in whatever form, as the quintessence of feminine strength. Therefore when people write things like "Moffat just writes such strong female characters!!!", I just have to shake my head, because you have misunderstood what empowerment is about and what a strong character is.

But whether I like Moffat or not, I do not think that is anything he is going to lose any sleep over. We must also be really careful here that we do not close the space for valid criticism from vulnerable groups. When you write to the effect that the sort of criticism that have been made amounts to "accusing a writer of misogyny or sexism", you expand the seriousness of the criticism considerably in order to be able to dismiss it. Because it is so serious to accuse "a writer of misogyny or sexism", it requiers extraordinary proof. Think of his children, for heaven's sake!

The criticism is in reality not that serious. The themes and tropes in Moffats work are all intermittent, the claim is not that he is a raging misogynist, just that he seems to inhibit certain qualities and preconceptions as a man writing women. Therefore clearly we are showing a degree of concern at something we see as problematic, not blatantly villifying someone, or labelling them as a bad human being for their TV writing. We need to be open to the fact that Moffat's pedestal-placement, and the way of describing female strength and male/female relationships can be problematic. The wise response to criticism is not dismissal and anger, but a certain degree of soul searching, a certain degree of humility and an awareness of what others can take from writing.

Now, I don't think the below is very fitting, because I see no reason why we cannot discuss this without acrimony.

halfwise wrote:And once again the thread about the silly show Dr Who descends to acrimony.  Rolling Eyes

I have an opinion, made on the basis of what I have watched of Moffat's writing, (basically how all TV critics makes up their mind about what they watch) which is of course up for debate. But I have seen something, and others have seen something, and ultimately, to negate that there is something to discuss, to my mind must rely on a very narrow reading of Moffat's work. I am open to discuss to what degree what I have seen in Moffat's work is a general trend in televion, but I am not generally ready to disbelieve the evidence of my own eyes and ears.

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Post by Bluebottle on Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:05 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{ps Blue- don't worry, I would definitely let you buy me a drink! Smile  Nod  drunken  

Slàinte mhòr. pub

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 6:33 pm

think there is a standard of proof for TV writing- Blue

{{Whether someone likes something or not is subjective, whether something is well written or not is not subjective. People like to say all writing is subjective, its not, writing is a technical exercise as much as it is a creative one.
To use an allegory if you designed a beautiful table that requires skilled carpentry to make, and you dont have those skills, then it matters not a jot how creative you are you're still going to have to stick a couple of books under at least one leg to stop it wobbling!
Series 11 is full of objectively bad writing techniques for example- not on a subjective level but on a technical workman that's just badly crafted all the legs wobble level.

'You said before something to the effect of "They are friends". This again is a subjective reading of their relationship, and there is certainly enough there to pull them in the direction of a special relationship *wink wink*.'

Yes I did say that, because that is what is supported by the text, and no there is not the support in the text for any wink wink reading. Its not there, you are adding that to the reading without it coming from the source. I gave one clear example above but there are many more-

'We're Time Lords, not animals. Try, nano-brain, to rise above the reproductive frenzy of your noisy little food chain, and contemplate friendship. A friendship older than your civilization, and infinitely more complex.'

but I could add-

DOCTOR: Why are you doing this?
MISSY: I need you to know we're not so different. I need my friend back.



or



MISSY: I am your friend.
DOCTOR: Makes no difference.
MISSY: I know it doesn't. I know I'm going to die. I have to say it, the truth. Without hope. Without witness. Without reward. I am your friend.




or



BILL: Why do you want to do this?
DOCTOR: She's my friend. She's my oldest friend in the universe.
BILL: Well, you've got lots of friends. Better ones. What's so special about her?
DOCTOR: She's different.
BILL: Different how?
DOCTOR: I don't know.
BILL: Yes, you do.
DOCTOR: She's the only person that I've ever met who's even remotely like me.



or



[size=13]DOCTOR: She was my first friend, always so brilliant, from the first day at the Academy.... [/size]We had a pact, me and him. Every star in the universe, we were going to see them all. But he was too busy burning them. I don't think she ever saw anything.


or

DOCTOR: Missy. Missy. You've changed. I know you have. And I know what you're capable of. Stand with me. It's all I've ever wanted.
MISSY: Me too. But no. Sorry. Just, no. (she takes his hand) But thanks for trying.

So I don't just say their relationship is about their friendship (first established in the Masters first episode with the 3rd Doctor) I say it because all the text supports their relationship being about their friendship. Nowhere is there dialogue to support the contention that their relationship is, or is meant to be seen, in any other light.

Moffat's prominent female characters are all the centre of the universe, the most important thing in the universe, alluring and close, but seemly unattainable, they all can bring the world down with the lift of an eyebrow. The Doctor's affection is presumed, and of course specially reserved for these female, rather than occasionally male, companions. (Blatantly in the case of Amy.) There is this constant theme of, "I can be awful to you, because you couldn't get angry at me, could you."'- Blue

Ok lets use Amy as an example as sheis usually the most contentious on these issues- centre of the universe- well she is the lead character in that she drives the narrative on, its her story we follow from childhood to death. Summed up nowhere better than in the final letter from Amy to the Doctor which clearly states, 'this is the story of Amy Pond.' Amy's story is a fairytale, deliberately so, with evil witches and good wizards and a loving loyal Prince, and babies snatched for changelings.
But making the companion the character we follow has been true of all NuWho since Rose, so I don't see any difference there.


Narratively Amy is not the centre of events she is just who we follow through them, the Doctor is, the cracks in Time ect are all from the narrative swirling around the Doctor, one which is still ongoing long after Amy is gone- Amy is collateral damage in that war against the Doctor and the Doctors response to that therefore is not 'I can be awful to you because you cant get angry with me' as you claim but guilt.

[size=13]DOCTOR: More guilt. Argh. Come on, there must be someone left in the universe I haven't screwed up yet. [/size]
[size=13]HOLO-AMELIA: Voice interface enabled.
DOCTOR: Oh. Oh, Amelia Pond, before I got it all wrong. My sweet little Amelia.
[/size]

[size=13]and[/size]

Doctor: Forget your faith in me. I took you with me because I was vain. Because I wanted to be adored. Look at you. Glorious Pond, the girl who waited for me. I'm not a hero. I really am just a mad man in a box. And it's time we saw each other as we really are.  [size=13][size=13]I stole your childhood and now I've led you by the hand to your death. But the worst thing is, I knew. I knew this would happen. This is what always happens.[/size][/size]

and with the guilt comes a sense of responsibility-

[size=13]AMY: Even so, it can't happen like this. After everything we've been through, Doctor. Everything. You can't just drop me off at my house and say goodbye like we've shared a cab. [/size]
[size=13]DOCTOR: And what's the alternative? Me standing over your grave? Over your broken body? Over Rory's body?
[/size]

[size=13]'Unattinable'- she is married by end of series 5 and remains so till the very end and her death. Not sure how a character written to have a romantic subplot with Rory that ends in them being happily married and having a child together makes her unobtainable. It would rather seem to be the opposite. [/size]

[size=13][size=13][size=13]they all can bring the world down with the lift of an eyebrow[/size][/size][/size]

[size=13][size=13][size=13]Amy can't.  She does remember those who have been wallowed up the Cracks in Time though and s can bring them back form it. But that's end of series five, she has till the midpoint of series seven still to go in which she has nothing you might call, special abilities, let alone the power to end the world. Series 6 and 7 have a very family feel to them with the married Ponds and River. But Amy possess no such abilities to do anything with a raise of her eyebrow. And her relationship with the Doctor from series 6 onwards is on the level of friends as is emphasised many times right from the start of series 6.[/size][/size][/size]

DOCTOR: After effect of the Silence. Natural enough. That's not what I was asking. You told me you were pregnant.
AMY: Yes.
DOCTOR: Why?
AMY: Because I was. I mean, I thought I was. It turns out I wasn't.
DOCTOR: No, why did you tell me?
AMY: Because you're my friend. You're my best friend.


The Doctor's affection is presumed, and of course specially reserved for these female, rather than occasionally male, companions.


The Doctors affection for his companions is always presumed. Nor is it especially reserved for female companions, but historically there have been a lot more of them than male. In the case of Moffat Who we have had two male companions- very different to one another, Rory and Nardole. In both cases the end result is a close friendship and understanding. Rory in especial who from the off calls the Doctor out and who sees him clearer than most-

RORY: You know what's dangerous about you? It's not that you make people take risks, it's that you make them want to impress you. You make it so they don't want to let you down. You have no idea how dangerous you make people to themselves when you're around.

This is a continuing theme, culminating in the scene in the Girl Who Waited when the Doctor puts Rory in his shoes of having to make a big, very difficult, impossible to win decision, starting with Rory losing it at the Doctor for his recklessness-

DOCTOR: I'm so sorry, but, Rory
RORY: No, this is your fault! You should look in a history book once in a while, see if there's an outbreak of plague or not.
DOCTOR: That is not how I travel.
RORY: Then I do not want to travel with you!

...

DOCTOR: It's your choice.
RORY: This isn't fair. You're turning me into you.
DOCTOR: Your choice, Rory.


One of the reasons I rate Rory as a male companion up there with Jamie is the depth and quality of the relationship he has with the Doctor, in order to act as Amy's defender he has to be able to see the danger presented to her by the Doctor, but his own journey for questioning that danger to putting himself in danger too is a well written one based on a growing mutual understanding of each other. I would say 11's affection for Rory is no less by the end than for Amy, and this is symbolised perfectly by him referring to them as a single entity- 'the Ponds.'

[size=13]"I can be awful to you, because you couldn't get angry at me, could you."'[/size]

[size=13]Amy gets angry quite a lot-[/size]

Clara- Don't you think she sounds a bit angry?

Amy- Well, someone's never been to Scotland.

As to her getting angry at the Doctor, upset more than angry I would say. Amy's affection for the Doctor never dims, but she does grow up from her unquestioning faith in him. And as I mentioned above everything the Doctor does in relation to Amy is based on his sense of guilt for ruining her life and is about putting that right- that includes ensuring she gets back on track and married to Rory, restoring her parents from the Cracks, and eventually helping her to see that he is not some hero, or superbeing, just a mad man in a box after-all. It is all done with the aim of trying to put right the damage he has inadvertently done to her life driven by a sense of guilt and responsibility.

With the end result that when the moment for Amy to choose what sort of life she wants comes she does not hesitate in choosing to be with Rory and to leave the Doctor forever- no longer reliant upon him, or waiting, or searching for something, she knows precisely what she wants to have and to chooses it. Causing a great deal of pain to the Doctor in doing so. So yes, that's not getting angry at him, its much worse.

I'll come back to Clara fully in a later post, but all i will say for now is regards her being the centre of the universe, of the four main Moffat woman in Who she is the only one I think this can actually be credibly levelled at, but it can't be seen outside the fact that she was the narrative means by which Moffat was going to lead the viewer into the realms of some classic Who and into the 50th anniversary special. As a companion therefore initially during 11's run Clara is unique in that she had a particular purpose besides being the companion from the off. Narratively her function changes entirely with 12.

'for a female character to be strong, she must display the characteristics we would value in a male action hero'

Of the four I would say one and bit could have this levelled at them. The obvious one is River who has a few action hero scenes. And Amy who has two I can think of, both not exactly her, in Girl Who Waited older Amy has the sword fight scene with thee robots but the episode is in no way an action adventure affair, its a character piece about Amy and Rory, and In Wedding of River Song she has the scene where she guns down the Silence to save Rory, kills Kovarian and has the bad ass one liner to end on. But that is an alternate timeline, though as far as Amy is concerned it still happened and she still killed Kovarian. And it is worth noting in that timeline Mofffat does have a spot of fun presenting Amy as a sort of Bond style character. Her opening line in that version of events is "Pond. Amy Pond."
And of course there is the family connection between Amy and River, and its no coincidence that the scene she guns down the Silence River style and then leaves Kovarian to die she also says to Kovarian "River Song didn't get it all from you, sweetie."

Amy overall however does not fall into any action hero category. Her strength comes from overcoming her setbacks, reaching greater understanding of what she wants from her life and who she wants to be in her life and how she wants to lead it- all of which was on hold as she waited on her imaginary childhood friend to return as he promised. As I noted previously her story is basically following the pattern of a fairytale and its by those rules it runs not the action hero trope.

Missy also does not display action hero traits beyond the sort you'd expect of any incarnation of the Master. And the tactic she resorts to to get her way her all the ones the Master as used in the past- deception, duplicity, appealing to the Doctor with reminders of their long friendship. Nothing that has not been present in Masters of the past.

Clara, as I said Id come back to her as she is a post in herself Ill probably deal with this there to in relation to her.

So really that just leaves us River. Who is kick-ass in the action hero sense- she shoots bad guys with style, she usually has a witty one liner to top things off with. But she isn't a normal human either. She is part time lord, genetically manipulated to be a killing machine and assassin, with heightened reflexes, stronger body and durability than a human and a significantly longer life span and with the ability to regenerate.
With River Moffat was seeking to create a female character who was not a time lord but who could nevertheless act as something close to an equal to the Doctor. But without the moral strictures placed on the Doctor in an action scene- River can and does shot people with guns. But this is not new to Who, there is a reason when the 3rd Doctor got stranded on earth it was with the Brigadier and a heavily armed military Unit. Actions scenes are not new to Who, having a secondary character who is someone close to the Doctor but who can shoot things when he cannot is not new either (Captain Jack occasionally performs the same function for 10 too).
RTD made companions the equal of the Doctor in a narrative sense. Twice Moffat made a character the equal of the Doctor in a more literal sense, River and Clara. Clara never went the action hero route, River does. But the important thing is where it ends up in both cases- with both River and Clara dead because they were acting just like the Doctor would. In Rivers case she literally knocks 10 out in order to take his place. In Clara's case she thinks she is doing what he would do in using the enemies strength against them. Both cases they die from their actions.
As 12 tries to warn Clara- "There is whole dimension in here, but there is only room for one me."

And finally with River whilst she certainly has action hero tropes her actual narrative and character arc is that of a tragic doomed romance. Which is not very action hero in the end. Given her nature as a genetically created killing machine, combined with her having to bring herself up from a very young age and through a regeneration and the nature of her tale being romantic in nature- it is perhaps not surprising that she is sassy, flirtatious, outrageous at times, forward, bold, adventurous and in her own words, 'doesn't mind killing people.'

I think using the action hero trope on one character out of the four is fair enough, especially given that characters backstory. But I would venture to say that Moffat Who, and in fact all modern Who in general uses action as a resolution rather sparingly, Moffat even more so than RTD did. Many of Moffats big climatic scenes are crescendos in words- the big speech in Atenaken or 12's Zygon Inversion speech for example, even the resolution to what happens to Gallifrey in the 50th is not a massive battle scene, or some huge action or fight scene, its just the execution of a clever plan.

Because it is so serious to accuse "a writer of misogyny or sexism", it requiers extraordinary proof. Think of his children, for heaven's sake!


No, it requires some proof, any proof would do, in my view. I think any criticisms obliges the critic to back up their criticisms with sourced evidence. I dont think that's an extraordinary demand. If you say Moffat writes a female character in a way that you present as negative, then in my view you have to provide source evidence and concrete examples which supports that.

The wise response to criticism is not dismissal and anger, but a certain degree of soul searching, a certain degree of humility and an awareness of what others can take from writing.

True enough, and I am not angry, I'm Scottish! But there has to be fairness to and a proper analysis of the work, your initial statement, and subsequent backing up of it seems generalised and broad strokes to me and not applicable in the manner you state it because its so narrow in its view. In my opinion in order to sustain that view of Moffats writing you have to dismiss an awful lot more that contradicts it.

'I see no reason why we cannot discuss this without acrimony'

Agree entirely, and none has been meant on my part. Frankly this is the best debate I've had on here since the PJ bashing days probably. Twisted Evil }}


Last edited by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:52 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Mrs Figg on Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:02 pm

Actually watching Missy in action is not subjective, its objective. There is a woman on the tv screen who is acting in a stereotypically arch, camp, flirty manner with sexual undertones, because she is written that way. There's no big mystery to it. People see it because its there. Unless you think people are incapable of picking up clues, subtle or not. She is written as the Master in female form, but unlike the male Master she uses female whiles, female behaviour patterns which are associated with flirting, ie kissing noses, giggling, 'do you love me' schtick, double entendre the list is endless. Missy is written as a female Master with female stereotypical behaviour patterns which she uses to nonplus the Doctor and make him uncomfortable and uneasy. Whether she means it or not that's besides the point, it part of her persona. Its actually there in front of your face. Shocked denial is useless.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:37 pm

arch, camp- Figg

{{Thats every Master in the history of Who.

'flirty manner with sexual undertones'

Doctor: Master.

Master: I like it when you use my name.

...


DOCTOR: I've been alone ever since. But not any more. Don't you see? All we've got is each other.


MASTER: Are you asking me out on a date?



Master in conversation with the 10th Doctor! You didn't seem to mind when it was a man playing the part doing it.}}}

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Post by Orwell on Sun Dec 23, 2018 7:40 pm

Mrs Figg wrote:Actually watching Missy in action is not subjective, its objective. There is a woman on the tv screen who is acting in a stereotypically arch, camp, flirty manner with sexual undertones, because she is written that way. There's no big mystery to it. People see it because its there. Unless you think people are incapable of picking up clues, subtle or not. She is written as the Master in female form, but unlike the male Master she uses female whiles, female behaviour patterns which are associated with flirting, ie kissing noses, giggling, 'do you love me' schtick, double entendre the list is endless. Missy is written as a female Master with female stereotypical behaviour patterns which she uses to nonplus the Doctor and make him uncomfortable and uneasy. Whether she means it or not that's besides the point, it part of her persona. Its actually there in front of your face. Shocked denial is useless.

Doctors in male form exhibit all sorts of male traits, so a Doctor in female form must do the same. What they are and how you incorporate them into the Doctor’s persona is the trick. Clearly, it’s a hard trick to write authentically. It’s a totally new field for Who and the start therefore an exciting adventure. Trouble is, maybe you need the calibre of James Joyce to achieve it as a writer? The actress is not the problem.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 8:21 pm

{{{{ I think what the actress brings to a role is important to take into account. A writers words in a book are one thing, but once given to an actor it becomes another thing with an extra dimension- the actors interpretation.
In the case of Gomez she has a history of bring a sexual flirtatious side with a stern dominatrix undercurrent to her roles, sometimes as in the role that brought her to most people attention, in surreal hospital sitcom Green Wing, its intentional in the writing sometimes its just in her performance. The nose kissing Figg complains about above being a good example as it was not in the script but is all Gomez. I doubt any instances of giggling as Figg puts it are in the script either but come from the actress performance (though as not sure what Figg means exactly I cant say for sure, nor for that matter does Missy ever ask anyone if they love her,or seeks too, she just want her old friend back-she tries to make him more like her and fails, and then he tries to make her more like him and fails but with a moral victory of sorts).

NSFW




}}

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 23, 2018 10:25 pm

{{{ Newest Who vid from one of my favourites Garostudios }}


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Post by Mrs Figg on Mon Dec 24, 2018 1:39 pm

Christmas wouldn't be the same without a Forumshire family Doctor Who punch up, so we got one in before the sprouts got cold. and all is well in the world.

Thumbs Up

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Post by halfwise on Mon Dec 24, 2018 2:27 pm

MIchelle Gomez has done stand-up, though I thought her delivery was far too restrained and her timing slightly off.  I don't get why people were laughing so hard because though her material was decent she's flubbing it a bit in my opinion. A far cry from her later acting.


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Post by Mrs Figg on Mon Dec 24, 2018 7:24 pm



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Post by malickfan on Tue Dec 25, 2018 10:00 am

Going to be weird this year, not having a (usually disappointing) xmas episode to have rambling crabbit drunken arguments over Sad Sad Sad

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Dec 25, 2018 1:20 pm

{{Not to worry we have a New Years special- when I will be much,much, much more drunk than usual! Twisted Evil drunken

For xmas specials I still think A Christmas Carol is the best of them- )}







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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Fri Dec 28, 2018 10:30 am


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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 30, 2018 5:05 pm

{{Like this, short but very sweet- from Garostudios and basically made in protest at the treatment of the TARDIS in series 11 }}


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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun Dec 30, 2018 6:20 pm

{{This is not good, I mean series 11 isn't worth much more than this, but not good for the show at all. The New Years episode is going to have be very good to repair some of this damage!}}

All New Who - Page 25 121

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