Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Blink - "When you say you and the guys, you mean the internet, don't you? "

Blink (Doctor Who) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Series 3, Story 10 (Overall Series Story#190) | Previous - Next | Index

Image via it's completely terrifying but oh so exciting
This is the one we all recommend a newcomer to Doctor Who start with, even today. It's new series, so it won't offput those unaccustomed to the ... ahem .. style of the classic series; it's Tennant, so everybody thinks he's dreamy; it's got a wicked monster, clever and genuinely frightening; moreover, it's got a central character who's a contemporary young lady we can all relate to, so we're not throwing a newbie directly into a discussion about Gallifrey, two hearts, regenerations, season arcs, and companion back story. It's a great entry point for the uninitiated because it succeeds almost like a Twilight Zone story, a 45 minute puzzle with a beginning and an end where you get the mysteries of time travel explained with wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey stuff that glosses over all the mess without alienating anyone.

It's an opening in the Whoniverse that stands alone, but hints at how much more there is to discover. And, it's easy to pivot off this and say, "If you liked that, now back up just a bit and watch the two that preceded it ... "

As a result, it's one of the more difficult ones to write about because it's the one we want to say, "No, don't read about it, just watch it and see for yourself ..." Then come back to me after you've mainlined the entire new series and started dipping your toes into the classic series because then we'll really have something to talk about.

With every show I watch, I ask myself what I would've done differently, whether as a director handed the script, the script editor, or as an actor given those lines. Watching it, the only questionable decision I saw was to pile on at the end with the montage of statues over the replay of the Doctor's instruction not to blink ... I found it all together too self-congratulatory. Yes, you did a clever thing and made statues menacing, we get it. After watching it and reading Mr. Graham's take on it (linked below) take, I think a few tweaks could've addressed those scenes played for cute that are actually based on some dodgy ideas about wooing and relationships.

Watching "Deep Breath" the day after watching this one, you really can't help but notice how the Clockwork Men were mashed-up with the Weeping Angels -- holding your breath standing in for staring as a defense mechanism.

Recommended Reading:

"'What I Did On My Christmas Holidays' by Sally Sparrow" - by Steven Moffat for the 2006 Doctor Who Annual

The Image Of An Angel (Blink) - Sandifer sees the Angels for what they are, or we give a Moffat a ton of credit hoping they are.

Blink and you'll miss your chance to get a man - Jack Graham's contrarian take, essential not only for being hard to find about this story, but for being tremendously insightful from a completely different direction than Sandifer.

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