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parrot_knight [userpic]

RTD in The Daily Telegraph

April 11th, 2009 (11:19 am)
current music: BBC Radio 2: David Tennant and Catherine Tate

Not only is there a Planet of the Dead-warming interview in the paper, an extended version of it can be found online here. Look out for Cardiff's next road project being named 'Boulevard de T'!

I can't support Russell's idea of history being something we already know about, of course; his self-image is very much of a man of today, a today expressed in the prosaic and the commonplace which reinvents everything without having to pay homage to it and where the moment and the needs of the moment are most important.

Comments

Posted by: Pellegrina (pellegrina)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 10:36 am (UTC)
mirror

He's a bit of a narcissist, really...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 10:57 am (UTC)
Horace Walpole

You have absolutely the right icon for that comment...

He's certainly not lacking in self-confidence. I think it's true that he is not a genre man, certainly.

Posted by: Virgers! How are we doing with those explosives? (tree_and_leaf)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 10:56 am (UTC)
Scots Soldiers (Icon of patriotic prejud

Oh, RTD... His ideas about history are, indeed, extremely silly, and would disgrace a third-former (and the anxiety about not being there to see what happens in a thousand years strikes me as a wee bit odd. I mean, it'd be interesting, but so would seeing the tenth century - and I'd find the tenth century more so, because it's easier to see how it connects to us*).

Also "I'm happy to do quarries." He's such a liar! We had, what one quarry in four series of Who? (Though to be fair, he gives the impression of always believing what he says at the moment he says it).


* I'm a narcissist, too, it appears!

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:10 am (UTC)
Davison Clock

I'd tentatively suggest that RTD is one of those people far more interested in the effect they have on other people than in the forces which shaped themselves. He might be open to the charge that he sees himself as a grand auteur who can't bear to think that his work (as he sees it) will write itself after he's gone.

I can think of two quarry scenes - though possibly the same quarry - one in The Satan Pit and another in Utopia.

Posted by: Virgers! How are we doing with those explosives? (tree_and_leaf)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:22 am (UTC)
illogical

Ah yes, I forgot Utopia (wishful thinking? No - I liked that episode. True to form, it was the conclusion of the final episode that was disappointing...)

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 12:14 pm (UTC)
Kirkcudbright Samoyed

I liked Utopia too - much better-constructed than the other two episodes in the trilogy, and proof that RTD-Doctor Who is at its best when it doesn't attempt too many epics. His strength is in relationship drama in council flats or laboratories at the end of the universe; this can only be projected onto universe-threatening scenarios for effect a couple of times before it loses its power.

Posted by: Virgers! How are we doing with those explosives? (tree_and_leaf)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:22 pm (UTC)
couldn't possibly comment

Yes, if he must do a cliche, he'd be better sticking to 'base under siege', which at least plays to his strengths!

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:42 pm (UTC)
Troughton

According to conventional fan history, the 'base under siege' era was the 1966-68 period, which was when RTD really became aware of the series - so Utopia shows its heritage!

Posted by: philmophlegm (philmophlegm)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:15 pm (UTC)
cyberleader

'Planet of the Ood' has quarry scenes too.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:17 pm (UTC)

So it does - snowy ones. (The same quarry is being returned to for the November special, which Total TV Guide claims is called The Waters of Mars, the forums report.)

Posted by: Virgers! How are we doing with those explosives? (tree_and_leaf)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC)
Wrong but wromantic

So it does. I apologise to Rusty ;)

Posted by: serriadh (serriadh)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 08:14 pm (UTC)

Though to be fair, he gives the impression of always believing what he says at the moment he says it
Rather like Ten...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 10:07 pm (UTC)
DavidIcon

Very true - as well as the assumption that his decisions are universally for the best, which I think might come back to haunt the Doctor... but what will it do to RTD?

Posted by: Virgers! How are we doing with those explosives? (tree_and_leaf)
Posted at: April 12th, 2009 12:06 am (UTC)

Ouch.

Posted by: malaheed (malaheed)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:17 am (UTC)

I have never had a very high opinion of RTD and everytime he opens his mouth or appears in print he manages to lower that opinion even further. At the rate he is going, he will end up coming out of the other side!

I see little that is not self indulgent, axe grinding of his (frankly) barely adequate thought processes and ideas. He is one of those rare individuals who can bring out the worst in the actors and the other writers and claim it to be all his own work. I suppose we should be grateful he didnt go into politics. Him and Gordon Brown would make Kafka seem like Terry Pratchett.

Posted by: Pellegrina (pellegrina)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:35 am (UTC)
raspberry

... But tell us how you realy feel ;-)

Posted by: malaheed (malaheed)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:50 am (UTC)

Probably best not to get me started ;-)

Posted by: Pellegrina (pellegrina)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:52 am (UTC)
curse you!

I mean really. I'd fix my typo but the link to "edit" my reply has gone AWOL...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 11:58 am (UTC)

This is what happens when someone replies to your comment - fixed in amber for all time...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 12:10 pm (UTC)
Eccleston

A lot of it is his own work. The amount of rewriting which RTD does on Doctor Who can be drastic - when Matthew Jones delivered his final rewrites for The Impossible Planet and The Satan Pit, the Ood weren't in it, for example; and the script extracts from The Fires of Pompeii reproduced in Doctor Who: The Writer's Tale show how RTD makes the dialogue more characteristic and conversational.

I think he does deserve a lot of credit for making the series work for a large audience in the age of Britain's Got Talent. A lot of it is very intelligent; and if its focus is on commentary on contemporary culture rather than the 'science' and 'history' of earlier periods in the show's history, that also works. Part of the problem is that RTD has been written out for some time; I'm looking forward to a fresh approach from Steven Moffat starting this time next year.

Posted by: didiusjulianus (didiusjulianus)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:20 pm (UTC)
Dory

What programme were DT & CT on on Radio 2 and I may listen-again to it when I get home.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 04:22 pm (UTC)

David Tennant and Catherine Tate were covering for Jonathan Ross for the entire three hours of his normal Saturday slot. Perhaps inevitably, they played 'Right Said Fred' by Bernard Cribbins; the Proclaimers were in the studio too, and, for the last half-hour or so, John Barrowman.

Posted by: serriadh (serriadh)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 08:20 pm (UTC)

Good Lord, the BBC let the three on them on live radio? Together? In the current climate?
*Grins*

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 10:06 pm (UTC)

They were remarkably well-behaved, and knew when they were sailing close to the edge...

Posted by: Penny Paperbrain (pennypaperbrain)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 08:33 pm (UTC)

Ponder is complaining: it's two hours since the episode finished and you haven't told us what to think yet!

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 09:36 pm (UTC)

I've been out watching it elsewhere! Just got back after some Red Dwarf....

Posted by: daniel_saunders (daniel_saunders)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 08:56 pm (UTC)
Doctor Who

I can't be bothered to read Davies' latest interview, but I had to note that

"his self-image is very much of a man of today, a today expressed in the prosaic and the commonplace which reinvents everything without having to pay homage to it and where the moment and the needs of the moment are most important."

reinforces my view of him as a typical postmodernist, with no sense of the past, except perhaps as a fancy-dress pageant to dip into without context, and little sense of the way that the contemporary world functions institutionally, just a series of catchwords that evoke the world without ever describing it.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 10:05 pm (UTC)
Hartnell words

I suspect that lots of people nowadays have no idea how the contemporary world functions in term of institutions, rather in terms of relationships. It's far more anarchic than the post-war world into which Doctor Who was born.

While I still pay tribute to Russell T Davies's skills in touching the zeitgeist, and many of his stories have a good deal of verve, etc, etc, the longer he remains the more I see the truth in what his critics have always said.