First note - "The Music of the Spheres" is so adorable. I mean, wildly brain-breaky and with no regard for canon or credibility at all, much like the two slim little companion books to the Harry Potter series, but just the fact that it exists and Tennant can be commandeered to do practically anything in character makes me happy. Wild little Graskes are always entertaining.
Besides, it's cute the way he crabs at the console's alarm bells and whistles like she's a fussy dog whining to go out. And I may or may not be really fond of that one outtake where he accidentally knocks over the music stand with a fantastic crash while rushing to grab the papers off it.
Pretty sure I need a trip in the TARDIS to experience Doctor Who at the Proms, because it looks like it was one of the ten greatest performance events have happened in my lifetime.
2008 Christmas Special: The Next Doctor
Good thing I set my expectations low, because this didn't deliver much better.
-Oh, good. They DID let him have a little room to breathe; none of this "straight into the Special we go" business from every other year past. Thank you, editing room. Thank you, magical power of "Journey's End."
-APoor Doctor, thinking he can escape the Christmas Curse by going into the past. YOU CAN NEVER ESCAPE THE CHRISTMAS CURSE. Although it's sweet that he tries. This looks like a place of good cheer, doesn't it? And he's at least safe from running into anyone he knows.
-Great, I already want to know what this merry music is called. I have a Curse of the Soundtracks thing going on, personally. But look at his big, boyish smile. See, Doctor's not broken. Is that a new shirt? And/or new tie?
-(Meanwhile, in a parallel universe: beg, borrow or steal, I'll find a way, to be with my lover next Christmas Day... Let's take a deep breath and recognize what's happening over in Pete's World, at least, before this episode depresses us too badly)
-Wow. So I didn't know this until just now, but I can't stand David Morrissey. I really don't want to look at him all hour; also, can I use this as proof that anyone besides Tennant as the Doctor sucks?
-Oh, oh, oh, nobody told me RTD was writing the specials as well! Is he really? Well, that explains some things. Hah! OK, in better mood now. Or does he just write the one?
-I would like the Cybermen way better if they were fluffy kitty-monsters with bronze faces all the time.
-Rosita's sort of fantastic! Good name indeed.
-WITH THE BLINKING AND THE STATUES AND SALLY OMG. Specifically name-checking Sally is my favorite part.
-Ooh, pretty horses! If there's one great tradition we lost with the coming of the automobile, it's gorgeous Friesians pulling funeral hearses.
-"I seem to be telling you everything." People are already slashing them, aren't they.
[Now seems as good a place as any to mention that, while I make very few comments on the plot, and I still can't stand Morrissey, it's always worth watching the Doctor interact with someone new, and put his brain to work puzzling out mysteries, preferably while wearing brainy specs. The fobwatch semi-misdirection was an especially clever trick. Really, I just like whatever delays the appearance of aliens on the scene, when I can pretend I'm watching a period piece instead.]
-Hahaha, I am enjoying this chase scene much more than usual. Also enjoying swordfighting more than usual.
-As clearly evil as Mercy is, I must give her points for style. Beautiful red dress, perfect coif, dashing red & black accessories.
-I was hoping "the Tardis" was some sort of horse team. I really was.
-Oh, I do so love these little montage clips of Past Ten!
"You are The Doctor."
-"Can I say, I completely disapprove!" *snert* I, on the other hand, completely approve of Awesome Rosita decking her in the mouth.
-HEE! "That was designated...a lie."
-Aaaand, I'm bored. Rarely do good things happen after one's eyes go all black and filmy.
-Was that...twice in ep? Did I hear "the hell" AND "damned"? Doctor! Stop expressing your emotions with this crass vulgarity!
-Where are the parents in all this, though? Like, are there no women except Rosita and Crazypants in this whole city?
-Speaking of Crazypants, I just realized that she the fantastic & snippy female defense attorney on Law & Order: UK. I love that woman. Whenever she's up to bat, I always hope doubly hard that Steel loses his case.
-DUH, LOST A SON. How did I not make that connection earlier? More to the point, how did you not make it? Oh, Doctor. You really must learn to make assumptions more often.
-Let's see. He's been Tinkerbell Jesus and ascended with angels at his command. Frankly this whole "heroic firefighter" pose is a big step down. (Although still adorable.)
-Dude, what the hell. That's not even a little bit scary. There are two types of alien monsters on this show: scary and Power Rangers. This one qualifies as Power Rangers. Or an even more juvenile Transformers robot.
-"You've got a reason to live."
"And you haven't?"
Oh, whatever, he'll find one. He always does.
-That child just has insanely girly eyelashes, by the way.
-OK, that's enough of THIS Cybermen theme...it's the only thing worse than Dalek music. *skips along; ignores part where Doctor defeated the Cyberking*
-Let's just move along then, with the lonely god and the...people clapping? Okay, sure, let's go with that. See? He's not broken! Not really ever, not permanently.
-Frederick will need a nursemaid? Yeah, whatever. I like how the Doctor's expression is all, "Seriously? You do have the option of remarriage. I would take it."
"All those facts and figures I saw of the Doctor's life, you were never alone. All those bright and shining companions? Not anymore?"
"Might I ask why not?"
"They leave. Because they should, or they find someone else," OR YOU DUMP THEM IN ABERDEEN. "And some of them, some of them...forget me." *weeps for Donna* (Or rather, the Doctor's second unnecessary loss)
"I suppose in the end...they break my heart." And the fact that his voice thickens but doesn't quite wobble as much as it used to is almost more heartbreaking than anything else.
In Conclusion: The first two minutes and the last two minutes are quite exciting! The rest, pretty darn forgettable, as in "I am having trouble deciding which I liked less, this or VotD." If you need me, I'll be trying to determine either that, or who makes a worse Doctor: Jackson Lake or the real replacement. (Answer: both. They're both worse.)
Up Next: Planet of the Dead. I know nothing! I think there is a brunette woman in it and that people generally reacted much more favorably to it than to this nigh-universally panned episode. That's literally it.
That, and I'm pretty sure that, due to my desperate desire to conserve as much Tennant Time as possible, I'm going to skip right over it and hit up SJA, series 3 first. That won't spoil me for anything important in PotD, will it? TOO LATE, I am eight minutes into the third adventure of said series as we speak, and stopping seems unlikely.
Comments/replies to follow tomorrow.