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parrot_knight [userpic]

Time Trauma

March 6th, 2010 (01:54 am)

When I was growing up, one of the things which led me to regard the Doctor as my sort of hero was that he was obviously cerebral, and didn't solve problems through the celebration of physical force. He was a hero for those who didn't see any point in kicking a ball around the playground in break times. I'm mainly thinking about the fourth Doctor here, though I suppose this applies to all the Doctors from Four to Seven. Even the fifth Doctor could be forgiven his love of cricket; it was slow and incomprehensible, but at least it wasn't as lobotomizing a team game as football...

Enough channelling of primary school anomie. It seems from the latest location filming, watched by many including at least one YouTube uploader, that the eleventh Doctor has taken to football. It was hardly surprising, given that Matt Smith was once Northampton Town's last, best hope (but then he was signed by Leicester City), that the Doctor should take up the game the media expect us all to think of as particularly beautiful, but my younger self would have been very worried by this to say the least!


(Deleted comment)
Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 12:06 pm (UTC)
Hartnell words

I watched The Tomorrow People too, and think there is a lot of potential there - see the posts I made back in spring 2008.

I enjoy this Doctor Who, and generally prefer to emphasise what I like about it in my reviews... but it chases audiences in a way that old Who didn't, and for most of its history didn't need to. I gather that this episode is an adaptation of a comic strip Gareth Roberts wrote for DWM back in 2006, The Lodger(though we have been here before with misleading parallels inferred from watching location shoots) and am reserving judgement - there is at least one sequence where the Doctor plays football wearing his jacket and bow tie, which sharaz_jek assured me last night must be counted as a redeeming feature.

Posted by: clarienne (clarienne)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 09:11 am (UTC)

That's a good point about how the doctor has changed, and one I hadn't realised until you said it!

I think my alienated younger self would have been put off by the amount of romance in New Who, for similar reasons.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 12:00 pm (UTC)
Argue mainly

While it's good to see the Doctor and companion getting along (where the two pictured in this userpic didn't, at least in the 1985 season), I'd probably have preferred it if the Doctor's relationships didn't develop in a romantic direction. Doctor Who Magazine pointed out that David Tennant's Doctor has had more screen kisses than all his predecessors put together. Sometimes Martha's unrequited love for the Doctor appeared very shoehorned-in; a lot of Martha-admirers seem to like her in spite of the development she got, rather than because of it, which is very old-school really.

Posted by: helflaed (helflaed)
Posted at: March 7th, 2010 06:56 pm (UTC)
vampire rabbit

Ack. Me too. I'd always thought of the Doctor as the kind of person who if confronted by a voluptuous naked woman would say "Wonderful! Can you just hold this magnetic resonator steady for a second- yes just there, while I recalibrate the tertiary reflux sensor conduit? Oh thanks- I really did need an extra pair of hands there!"

Whereas Ten seems to be in dire need of a dose of bromide...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 7th, 2010 08:34 pm (UTC)

Your way of playing the part was certainly the way Tom Baker - a man who at one stage lived in a flat with a name, though mild, probably not printable on an open post - chose to do it. Nowadays RTD and Moffat have cited Hartnell's Doctor's flirtation with Cameca in The Aztecs and his grandparenthood of Susan as precedent for their interest in foregrounding the Doctor's sexuality.

Posted by: philmophlegm (philmophlegm)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 11:31 am (UTC)
Duncan Edwards

I think it says as much about the growth in popularity of football in this country over the last quarter of a century. Football is respectable now; it wasn't 25 years ago.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 11:56 am (UTC)

I'm not sure whether it's more 'respectable' as such; it's still murky, and many of the big name players are more badly behaved than ever; but the injection of money from satellite television has lifted the upper flight in terms of ground standards and facilities as well as in player salaries, and enabled clubs to adopt more complex marketing strategies which have pitched the game to a wealthier audience. Certainly on Tyneside there was always a business clientele for matches, but there seems to have been more provision for them and a more dedicated attempt to pursue them in the last couple of decades. Indeed, the only time I've attended a live football match was in a box aimed at businessmen, at Newcastle United.

Edited at 2010-03-06 11:56 am (UTC)

Posted by: philmophlegm (philmophlegm)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 05:33 pm (UTC)

But 25 years ago, a nice respectable middle-class family would not generally have gone to see a football match. Now, that would be a perfectly normal (if expensive) family outing.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 7th, 2010 11:08 am (UTC)

True, though I think the male part of a 'nice respectable middle-class family' would have gone, certainly in some parts of the country.

Posted by: clarienne (clarienne)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 02:14 pm (UTC)

It may not have been respectable, but I think it was popular with a large section of the population.

Perhaps this is to do with the way (IMO) the old upper-working classes have largely become indistinguishable from the lower-middle. Its not just football thats become more respectable, but football fans.

Posted by: philmophlegm (philmophlegm)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 05:33 pm (UTC)
Wrexham club shield

That too.

Posted by: Penny Paperbrain (pennypaperbrain)
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 02:23 pm (UTC)

Bloody hell. I'll be taking a Ponderish line on New Who the Third at this rate.

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: March 6th, 2010 10:27 pm (UTC)

The Doctor did have a football rattle in Masque of Mandragora of course, and Ace apparently supported Charlton Athletic, but yes, the cliche used to be that there were two very different types of fanatical scarf wearing young men living for Saturday afternoons...

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 7th, 2010 11:17 am (UTC)

I don't think I'd have recognized a football rattle in 1976, though I would have been less bothered about it then than I became when we moved house (the end of the year) and therefore schools (start of 1977).

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 7th, 2010 11:17 am (UTC)

I know... decline of civilization and all that.

Posted by: wrong but wromantic (sally_maria)
Posted at: March 8th, 2010 07:36 pm (UTC)
No I in team

I'm sorry, this is cheeky, because it's nothing to do with your post. But someone else on my flist was wondering if Carey Mulligan was the first person who'd been in Doctor Who who was also nominated for an Oscar- and I thought that if anybody would know it would be you.

On the subject of football, I was certainly never a sports fan, but I don't think I was as invested in the Doctor as a geek hero - so the basic idea doesn't bother me hugely. On the other hand, I'm not convinced by the Doctor in a football strip - looks far too normal. I'll probably be waiting to see how it works in context though - too many years of being burnt by partial spoilers in too many fandoms.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 8th, 2010 08:05 pm (UTC)
Hartnell words

Carey Mulligan is not the first, though she might be the first performer to appear in Doctor Who before she received a nomination. I've looked up a few likely names, and find that George Coulouris, who played Arbitan in The Keys of Marinus in 1964, was Oscar-nominated (best supporting actor) for his performance in Watch on the Rhine (1943). To my surprise, Claire Bloom was never nominated for an Oscar, but she has won two British Academy awards.

Backstage, writer Bob Baker and costume designer James Acheson have both won Oscars for film projects, well after working on Doctor Who.

Agreed on the Doctor being too normal in a football strip - the number 11 is a bit self-referential too...

Posted by: wrong but wromantic (sally_maria)
Posted at: March 8th, 2010 08:24 pm (UTC)
Merlin - Grubby

Thank you for looking that up, that's very helpful. I really wasn't sure, I didn't think there was anyone that obvious, but over 40 years is a lot of names through the mill.

Posted by: daniel_saunders (daniel_saunders)
Posted at: March 14th, 2010 02:19 pm (UTC)
Late thoughts from abroad
Doctor Who

I believe the music composer for The Aztecs (Richard Rodney Bennett?) one an Oscar too.

And I dread the thought of the Doctor playing football.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: March 14th, 2010 02:29 pm (UTC)
Re: Late thoughts from abroad

His Wikipedia pages says that he has been nominated several times, though never actually won (he has won a BAFTA, though.)