Debating Doctor Who
Debating Doctor Who
Allison Shoemaker and Alasdair Wilkins
A topnotch site
Episode 171: A Classic Series Fan’s Take On “The Power Of The Doctor”
It's just Alasdair on this one, offering an hour-plus worth of solo thoughts on something he's particularly qualified to discuss: how "The Power Of The Doctor" incorporates the classic series. As Allison and Alasdair won't both be available to record together until next month, the latter jumps on the mic for what turns out to be much longer than planned (but probably not longer than he honestly should have expected) to talk about Ace, Tegan, and, well, a few other aspects of the 13th Doctor's final story. While the full discussion of the story will wait until we can get both hosts on, it turned out that Alasdair had PLENTY of (spoiler-y) things to say on this particular topic that he felt honor-bound to share with you all...
Oct 24, 2022
Episode 170: New Doctor announced, Tennant and Tate returning, and more!
We're back from one of our customary unexpected hiatuses because, well, frankly Russell T. Davies simply demanded it. But first, we talk about what we've been up to in 2022 (some lovely stuff, some distinctly less than lovely stuff) to explain just why the podcast was on hold for a bit, as well as our plans to talk about the 13th Doctor specials in the near future. But then we get into all the recent news, including Ncuti Gatwa's casting as the new Doctor, the announcement that David Tennant and Catherine Tate are returning, and the casting of Yasmin Finney as a character called Rose. To help manage people's varying degrees of spoiler aversion, we initially stick to just what has been officially announced, then discuss what's been spotted on the set, and finally talk about some of the rumors going around as to what it all means, so feel free to listen to all or only some of it if you want to avoid potential spoilers. We're just so happy to be back with you all, and so excited to be excited about Doctor Who!
May 22, 2022
Episode 169: “The Vanquishers”…Part Two!
We had plenty more to say about the finale, as it turns out there was A LOT going on in this one. Allison has some more praise for Jodie Whittaker's performance, while Alasdair reports on their rewatch of "The Wedding Of River Song" for what we're sure were good and useful reasons. Then we look closer at Diane, the Great Serpent, the Sontarans, the fate of Professor Jericho, and a bunch more!
Dec 17, 2021
Episode 168: “The Vanquishers”…Part One!
After five weeks of being more or less on the same page about Flux, Alasdair and Allison are split on the finale. Alasdair dug it! Allison very much did not! We discuss how the episode really does seem to ignore the whole destruction of the universe thing, but then Alasdair submits... what if that's fine actually? We talk quite a bit about poor Karvanista and the offscreen genocide of his people, and then look at the episode's central conceit with the Doctor(s). We also look at the final scene between Yaz and the Doctor and wonder just what the show was playing at there. There's still plenty to discuss, so we'll be back soon with part two!
Dec 10, 2021
Episode 167: “Survivors Of The Flux”…Part Two!
We're back and possibly even sillier than we were in our last discussion of this episode. We discuss what works -- the performances, mainly -- and what really doesn't about all the business with the Doctor and Tecteun. We look at this in comparison with "The Timeless Children", and we're not exactly thrilled to say that the earlier episode comes off looking better. We also generally examine past episodes that served to set up big finales, and see how this stacks up next to the likes of "The Stolen Earth" and "The End Of Time: Part One." We took a look at the costuming, and Allison made a reference to something on Fleabag that lost Alasdair completely. All in all, a fun use of an hour and change!
Dec 4, 2021
Episode 166: “Survivors Of The Flux”…Part One!
We keep not planning to make these two-part conversations, and then we hit the hour mark and realize we haven't even started talking about all the Barbara Flynn stuff (for the second time in two weeks!). In the meantime, we discuss a bunch of other parts of an episode we both enjoyed but also think is probably the least effective of the season. We spend a lot of time on just what exactly was going on with Yaz, Dan, and Jericho. We look at the Grand Serpent's path through UNIT history, and Alasdair does a quick lore check. We randomly talk about "Dinosaurs On A Spaceship" just as we're theoretically trying to wrap the episode up, and also discuss to what degree "Spyfall" is like early Legends Of Tomorrow. Can't lie, folks, we got a bit weird in this one.
Dec 2, 2021
Episode 165: “Village Of The Angels”…Part Two!
We're back for more Angel chat! Topics this time around include how this episode stands up on a rewatch, Jamie Magnus Stone's generally excellent direction, Annabel Scholey and her wonderfully unselfish performance, just how awesome Segun Akinola's score is for this episode (even if we're not *really* the right people to be discussing music in-depth), Bel's side-story with guest star Blake Harrison, and what to make of the great-uncle of it all.
Nov 27, 2021
Episode 164: “Village Of The Angels”…Part One!
Yep, once again, we're making this a two-parter. We weren't sure heading in, as you can hear from Alasdair's uncertain intro, but by the hour mark it was pretty clear that, yeah, we have just about as much to say on this episode as we did "Once, Upon Time." So, in this first part of our discussion, we talk about Kevin McNally's beautiful performance as Professor Jericho, why this is such a good outing for the Weeping Angels as monsters, and a few issues that Alasdair has with the underlying story structure. That said, we're very much agreed this is a damn good episode, and we're very excited to talk more about it on the other side of the holiday...
Nov 24, 2021
Episode 163: “Once, Upon Time”…Part Two!
We're back as promised to continue our discussion of our an episode we dug the first time around and dug even harder on the rewatch. We discuss some more about just why this episode is such a breath of fresh air, then start discussing specific things we love about it, starting with Barbara Flynn's mysterious woman. We also discuss the Weeping Angels and their role here ahead of their big return tomorrow, plus look even more closely at the Doctor and Yaz's relationship and just how mean the Doctor is to Yaz in this episode. We finish up with a brief look toward the future with some 14th Doctor casting rumors, and we catch up on some news about next year's specials that are at least a month old but we totally missed back in October. (And honestly, pretty sure I speculated on whether the two sides of the regeneration scene would be filmed separately, like they did with Eccleston and Tennant, and it turns out that Jodie Whittaker confirmed that as such on The Graham Norton Show. Oh and apparently that's how she did it when she regenerated from Capaldi anyway. So, uh, yeah, no points for research this week, but hey, the episode discussion is fun...)
Nov 20, 2021
Episode 162: “Once, Upon Time”…Part One!
We had so much to say about this one that we couldn't fit it into a single episode! So here's what turned out to be the first part of our discussion of this frankly stunning episode. We talk about how this feels ambitious in a way even this era's best stories generally haven't. We look at how Flux is progressing Yaz and the Doctor's relationship at long last. We marvel at all the several great performances, and we talk about the big surprise guest star. (No, not Barbara Flynn. To Alasdair's great chagrin, we ran out of time to talk about her. But hey, part two incoming Saturday!)
Nov 17, 2021
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