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Doctor Who, 3x10, "Blink"

Stop being so awesome, season 3. This is not allowed.

'Beware the Weeping Angels
I said a quick prayer as this episode started playing: "Dear God, please make the new characters less annoying than last time. Love, Me." That's all I asked. Just some less godawfully annoying characters than we got in "Love and Monsters," and maybe I would stop sulking in a corner over the fact that there have to be Doctor-lite episodes at all and why can't the U.K. just suck it up and produce 14 proper episodes a year if the U.S. can do 22. (hey, I said maybe)

Then I saw the old house, and I forgot all my quibbles like THAT. *snaps fingers* You may or may not remember that old houses are pretty much my favorite thing in the world, and the only thing I love as much as ones turned into museums are the sad and decrepit abandoned ones. Adding to my adoration was the fact that this was just like a live-action version of Lost Destinations, which, if you ever want to freak yourself out a lot, look at those pictures (especially the houses) when you're home alone at 3 in the morning, preferably in a rural area.

"I love old things. They make me feel sad." Aaaand, that was when I tackle-hugged Sally Sparrow, whom I had previously already found pretty and fairly likable, and declared her The Most Excellent Guest Star In Series History. What a perfect sentiment. That's a keeper of a quote, and one which I may adopt as my mantra.

So, *checks off list*, between the likable characters and the setting and the excellent music and the message written beneath the wallpaper, and then the ultra creepy stone angels, I was completely mesmerized by this story and had all but forgotten it was Doctor Who. It was more like when I used to randomly run across episodes of "The Outer Limits" on TV while waiting to tape the Very Late X-Files reruns. Or, I suppose, X-Files itself (OMG.  How awesome would the new movie have been if it had featured Mulder & Scully squaring off against evil statues?)  At this point, I really didn't care if the Doctor never came back.  :P

I could talk myself into circles saying all the same things, so I'm just going to break off the mini-essay and move it to categories now. Suffice to say that I actually watched this episode at least twice in full, NO FAST FORWARDING AT ALL, that's how good it was.

Doctor & Martha Cameos
-It didn't even really feel like cameos so much this time...not like That Other Episode That Shall Not Be Named. Maybe because he was more of a constant presence throughout instead of just bookending the main storyline. Admittedly, Martha's screen time seemed distinctly lacking.  I don't argue with that, though. Even after starting to like her, I still have no problem with her disappearing for a while.

-"It's more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly...timey-wimey...stuff." *LOVES* I rewound that about 20 times the first time I heard it, because it is by far the most hilarious thing I have ever heard on this show. Although, the runner-up goes to "This is my timey-wimey detector. Goes ding when there's stuff."

-Have to say that Martha butting into the conversation on DVD was one of my favorite parts. "All of space and time he promised me; now I've got a job in a shop; I've got to support him!" "Martha!" Exasperated!Doctor amuses me. Although Martha does seem to have to do a lot more actual work to earn her keep than Rose did. I sympathize, as that's got to suck - but I still like Rose a whole lot more, so I'm not that fussed about inequitable treatment.

The Angels
-Are the freakiest things in the history of Doctor Who, bar none, and that was before they turned out to have FANGS. Or, well, more like two rows of pointy little shark teeth, but still, THEY LOOK LIKE THEY COULD GNAW YOUR FLESH. "Kill you nicely," my butt.

-Though I have to say that it's a pretty intriguing way of going about things, getting zapped back into the past and living yourself to death.  I am loath to praise the Moffat, but this is an angle I've not previously run across in my literary or televisual travels. 

-I was thinking I would actually be OK as far as continuing psychological scarring went, since there aren't any angel statues around here. But then: there was that ending montage made to inspire terror! It could be any statue. Even that white Virgin Mary statue out in the woods, donated by the class of '42, that I always used to find very peaceful and spiritual in the little clearing near the entrance to the trail, but now will probably make me flinch the next ten times I walk past it. Assuming I can work up the courage to go near it at all. THANKS.

-Oh yeah, and the best shot in the whole episode?  The long shot of the house with the cluster of angels peering out the window.  That is so going to be my wallpaper come October.

Other Stuff
-17 DVDs is...actually more than I've got. I think I only own half a dozen movies at most, plus another half-dozen TV sets.

-Billy wasn't much to look at, but then his accent changed all that. Very, very hot accent. And then I sniffled against my will at old!Billy and their last meeting. "I have until the rain stops." Waaaaaaaaaaaah! No fair, I haven't recovered from the last emotional beating yet! You promised me a straight shot of scary!

(Not that I didn't ultimately wind up with a little love for Sparrow & Nightingale's Antiquarian Books & Rare DVDs shop. That looks like I place I'd love to visit. Or better yet, run. Reason #456 Sally Sparrow has a fantastic life, despite the tragic and unexpected loss of her best friend)

Things That Made My Head Hurt
I had to really work at wrapping my head around how the parallel timelines must have worked here. Because...if Billy and the Doctor are both in 1969, and Billy has to wait 40 years to get Sally the message, then wouldn't the Doctor and Martha have to wait along with him? But then if Sally sends the TARDIS back, it appears in 1969, and so really not much time has passed at all. Wait, though, but first Billy has to...

The paradoxes kept butting up against each other every time I almost made sense of them. *clutches head* My simple human brain cannot process! Which is where the Doctor's silly description actually came in very handy. I kept picturing a giant Jell-O mold, with random dates and years floating around inside, and finally I forced an explanation that Billy and the Doctor, once separated, are on different tracks. Billy goes the long route, his 40-year life unfolding no matter what, while the TARDIS being zapped back simultaneously creates a shortcut teleport for the Doctor. Hah! Pinned it down! *glows with triumph* It feels like solving a particularly complex math problem.

I cannot, however, figure out how the Doctor and Martha's later appearance figures into that timeline if they're in 2008 and Martha's gone by 200...*furrows brow* No, OK, TIME MACHINE. RIGHT. They can pop in and out of 2008 at will. So that must have happened at some point prior to "Blink." OK, I think I have it sorted out now. For at least a second, so I'm going to freeze, take a mental snapshot, and never think about it again because if I do, I'll lose my understanding.

This is why I didn't want to watch a show about a stupid time-traveler in the first place. *grouses*

In Conclusion
Human Nature/Family of Blood cannot be caught, but I believe this episode just cinched the win for best single episode of the season.

Up Next: *sighs heavily* It was so nice, drifting along in complete denial of the fact that Jack was due to return at some point - I'd almost managed to forget about it entirely.  Utopia's not looking real impressive anyway; throwing in Captain Jack doesn't help.  Like, I'm trying to convince myself to go fetch 3x11, and I have no motivation to do so whatsoever.  But that's OK.  Whatever disappointments may come, nothing can take away the magic of the past three eps.  *cherishes*
P.S. OH HAI THERE, RECAPIST, are you aware that "Journey's End" is somehow not residing behind the customary recap cut? I'm just saying, someone UNSPOILED might come along and accidentally SEE SOME OF THE MANY, MANY SCREENCAPS IN THERE. (Not that I did. I scroll speedily and my brain registered nothing except color. But it was frightfully close.)


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 7th, 2008 01:28 am (UTC)
asdfkl;!! Names for episodes and characters and stuff! *squishes* Hee! Sally Sparrow is my favorite guest star ever. Seriously, best actress for this episode.

This is the single best episode of The Lost Season, I'm convinced. Though I'm dreading Moffat's rise to power, this episode was handled nicely. Who was the director and can they do more Doctor Who episodes?

The montage at the end is the reason I get so freaked out around statues now. And my family laughs at me.

Random Bonus: I'm pretty sure an episode of The Middleman uses "Goes ding when there's stuff" in a loving way. With a smile.

Not that I am wishing you would give that show a chance.
Aug. 8th, 2008 01:08 am (UTC)
I'm still a little dazed that an episode this brilliant exists. And really, I never notice anything special about directing, but if that's part of what made it so good, then YES. BRING THIS ONE BACK.

Did your family watch the montage? If so, then perhaps they need a refresher course on how legitimately terrifying it is. Because being freaked out around statues is pretty much an unavoidable result of this episode.
Aug. 8th, 2008 01:37 am (UTC)
The fun/scary this was shot with the windows and the angels must be the director. *refuses to admit Moffat was good with this one*

They won't even touch this episode. Sad. I get the feeling they won't be watching Doctor Who anytime soon either, though my brother may start! (Not that they need to I ramble enough around them for my mom to know to make Doctor Who part of my work password, WHEN I WASN'T EVEN THERE!!!)
Aug. 8th, 2008 02:21 am (UTC)
They won't even touch this episode. Sad.
Lol...really? My mom isn't one for sci-fi at all, but even she couldn't help starting to watch this ep when I was showing her how the video worked on the Sansa. Maybe you can just spring it on them. :P
Aug. 7th, 2008 01:30 am (UTC)
Oh my god that episode freaked me out when I saw it. Alex and I were screaming, and I am now terrified of statues. STATUES! Luckily when I get to the library only the one entrance is open, so I don't have to go past the big stone lions.
Aug. 8th, 2008 12:59 am (UTC)
Haha...yeah, I suddenly can no longer remember a time when statues had pleasant associations. (but aw, I still think stone lions would be cool. Their teeth are still less scary than the weeping angels')
Aug. 7th, 2008 02:11 am (UTC)
and the only thing I love as much as ones turned into museums are the sad and decrepit abandoned ones.

So you would love where I work on certain weekends? Probably not where I live though. It's an old house but doesn't really look like it did. I can send you pictures of what it looked like in the early 19th century.

"Blink" has made me scared of statues in every show I watch now. I'm a little gun-shy. Creepiest thing ever. I think they're even scarier than Daleks. Those little bastards don't make me hide behind my couch but those damn angel statues have me jumping at shadows.

Sally Sparrow rocked.
Aug. 8th, 2008 12:57 am (UTC)
So you would love where I work on certain weekends?
Are you kidding? About my only impetus for traveling is to see historic homes (For example, nest part of my entire band trip to New Orleans? Touring a former plantation). I just assumed you were at a regular museum...must have skipped some details. That's really neat.

I would love to see 19th century pictures!

Yeah, I'd have to say the statues are about ten thousand times scarier than Daleks, mainly because they're such a generic and common fixture in life. No, wait, I got it - statues are the new clowns.
Aug. 8th, 2008 01:17 am (UTC)
Oh no, we don't have actual history museums here. The closest we get is the Frazier and it's just an arms museum.

The museum I currently volunteer at is Victorian mansion and other than the furniture and an addition looks pretty much like it did when it was built.

The one I worked at last summer was an early 19th century house on a hemp plantation.

My building is the 4th to the left. It's not that color gray anymore but what's interesting about all the old houses in this area is that they all have stained glass windows in them (I have the remaining stained glass window in this building in my closet).
Aug. 8th, 2008 02:04 am (UTC)
*jaw drops* PRETTY. Oh my gosh, that is a gorgeous Victorian. Outside and in. (I'm rather enjoying the virtual tour. :D)

Pity your building doesn't still look quite like that...it's a cool setup.

Aug. 8th, 2008 02:21 am (UTC)
Yeah. Most of the buildings around here were converted into tenement houses and apartment buildings 60-70 years ago. Some of them are still private residences but those are rare.

I keep meaning to buy a camera so I can take pictures of some of the better preserved houses.
Aug. 7th, 2008 02:30 am (UTC)
Sally Sparrow is awesome! I've seen the actress in other films before (the newer versions of Pride and Prejudice and Northanger Abbey) so I was familiar with her, and she rocked it :D
Aug. 7th, 2008 08:05 pm (UTC)
Pride and Prejudice AND Northanger Abbey?? Wow, thanks for letting me know. Now I've got even more reason to see those.
Aug. 7th, 2008 08:20 pm (UTC)
Yup! She played Kitty in P&P and Isabella in NA. She's in this icon, but only the back of her head, haha.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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