capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default) pour over every detail of this with stereotypical geeky delight.

You have been warned.

[Image description: Thumbnail image for the YouTube video: “Meet the Thirteenth Doctor” posted by the Doctor Who YouTube channel, showing a close-up of a white woman’s open hand, with the cuff of a dark coat’s sleeve, holding a brass colored key in her open palm. Description Ends]

Video Description behind the cut )

Okay, so this is what I am wondering: Can we garner any further clues from this (beyond what’s already been leaked/officially released) about what happens in the Christmas Special?

I mean, that hooded coat is very like the one Twelve has been wearing, the last two series. But Jodie Whittaker is a lot smaller than Peter Capaldi, and she is not lost in there – it’s clearly tailored to her.

So is this her fresh after regeneration and the outfit 12 had been wearing changed with her, to accommodate (via TARDIS magic), or is this outfit this incarnation’s Chosen Look? And if so, what does that say about her character, if she’s chosen something so similar?

Also – presumably, the Christmas Special will at least start out wintry, but this scene is in the height of summer. So what happens in the intervening seasons/years? Also also – the bit where first, a fresh key, and then the TARDIS, appears is reminiscent of the end of Eleventh Hour… Apparently, they’ve been separated from each other for a while. Does that mean that Twelve’s regeneration will be as destructive as Ten’s was?

(I did warn you…)

Or, alternatively, do you think this scene’s only purpose is to introduce 13? And the mysterious walk through the woods just looks cool? And if that’s the case, what do you think it says about the tone and/or themes for the show that Chibnall wants to set?


^Everything above this line started as a Tumblr post.^

Everything from here is fresh for Dreamwidth:

  • I'm glad they decided to go with a woman.

  • I'm disappointed she's so white (and still not ginger!).

  • But I'm even more disappointed than I expected to be that they went back to the conventional "pretty youth" mold; for those viewers who just started watching with Doctor 10,* it must seem that Clara's concern in "Deep Breath" was valid: 12's regeneration as an 'old' person must seem like something was broken, that time. I don't need a full head of grey hair. But would a wrinkle or two really be so bad?
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
(Much [not all] of my commentary on Episode One ["The Pilot"] I posted to my Tumblr, first)

Spoilers for *The Pilot* all the way down )

Spoilers for *Smile* all the way down )

So Yes: Good. Two strong episodes in a row.
capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)
And yet, after the Christmas Special, there's virtual silence?!

So I guess I'll have to start (if you want to get something done, be ready to do it yourself :::Rhubarb, Peas, and Carrots:::)

I want to squee!

I want to Grumble!

So this will be a Squumble!

Anyway, I'll get the grumble out of the way:

There were no closed captions on the Amazon Video Stream!

I'm privileged enough to be able to understand audio, but I've gotten so used to having closed captions that not being able to read and listen at the same time is as distracting to my brain as a vague itch between my shoulder blades that I cannot reach. So that actually subtracted from my enjoyment of the episode, and it's frustrating because I'm sure that all of the creative, talented people who actually had to work to create this story had nothing to do with it.

Also, the trailer had captions, so I had no reason to suspect that the actual episode would not. And I didn't find out the truth until after I had already bought it.

I suspect something sloppy and irrational, like not double-checking the copyright license (I'd come across the tidbit, somewhere, somewhen, that captions are licensed separately from the audio -- talk about Humbug!).

And that has me worried about all of Series 10...

Okay, now for the squee.

Warning: Spoilers Ahoy! )
capriuni: Close-cropped picture of Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor (12-2)
Okay, here's a Child ballad of Robin Hood, that showed up in my YouTube subscription feed, yesterday afternoon. I have absolutely zero evidence that it inspired Mark Gatiss in writing "Robots of Sherwood," mind. But the adventure described in the lyrics sounds enough like a classic Doctor Who plot, that should Mr. Gatiss admit to it, I would not be in the least surprised.

As evidence, I present this excerpt from the lyrics:

(Quote -- spelling corrected)
'Come, tell me the cause, thou pretty one,'
Quoth Robin, and tell me aright,
From whence thou comest, and whither thou goest,
All in this mournful plight?'
'From London I came,' the damsel reply'd,
'From London upon the Thames,
Which circled is, O grief to tell!
Besieg'd with foreign arms.
'By the proud Prince of Aragon,
Who swears by his martial hand
To have the princess for his spouse,
Or else to waste this land:
'Except that champions can be found
That dare fight three to three,
Against the prince and giants twain,
Most horrid for to see:
'Whose grisly looks, and eyes like brands,
Strike terror where they come,
With serpents hissing on their helms,
Instead of feathered plume.


Now, does that, or does that not, sound like a classic Doctor Who foe and threat?

Here are the full lyrics, written out (from Wikisource):'s_Ballads/129 (if you read all the way to the end, you'll see that this is one version of Robin Hood's story where his life as an outlaw comes to an end, and his life a respected nobleman resumes).

And here's the video of the song being sung, that popped up yesterday (I disagree with his rhyming choices in a spot or two, but it's still earworming me, anyway): (about 11 minutes long).

As a side note, here's a video of "Daddy wouldn't buy me a bow-wow," which is the chorus that Sarah Jane whistles as she walks away at the end of "Hand of Fear," (which might make it ironic, or simply a rounding out of her story arc, when the Doctor sends her a version of K-9 later):
capriuni: "Random" in mixed fonts, with "Stuff" in French Script on a red label obscurring a common obscenity. (random)
1) From Dave Hingsburger's blog, "Rolling around in my head," dated 28-10-2015, regarding a participants in his workshop on bullying:

[S]ociety has lied to them about who they were. They had intellectual disabilities, true, but that didn't mean what they'd been told - that they couldn't learn, they couldn't grow, they couldn't figure things out.


...Just as having a mobility disability doesn't mean you're stuck in one place. You just need the right tools. Realizing that analogy helped me put a few cracks in the meme that there's any real disability hierarchy.

Full blog entry is here:

2-a) Praising what I enjoyed before criticizing what I didn't about the Doctor Who episode "The Woman Who Lived":

i) The setting
ii) The Doctor as sidekick
iii) Capaldi's grin when "Me" realized she cared about people, after all.
iv) The "Me" gag.*

2-b) Criticizing what I didn't:

i) The loss of Ashildr, the storyteller -- especially since it was without explanation, or mention.
ii) That it was the second story in the season (after the Fisher King) in which the Big Bad was out to kill humans for no apparent reason. That's just not what Doctor Who is about. At least the Mire were harvesting humans for consumption.
iii) That they'd created Leandro (really?) and didn't play on the Beauty and the Beast angle.

*3) I used that gag once, when I was about ten (maybe eight?). We were about to get on an airplane for a family trip, and one of the stewardesses crouched down to my eye level, and said, in a tone usually reserved for puppies who aren't yet weaned:

"And what's your name?
(With my best growl voice): "I'm Me!"
"'Mi' -- what a pretty name!"

... At which point my mother coughed, and said we really needed to hurry and board, before I said something rude about the woman's intelligence. ...And that was the first lesson I had on how some people are immune to sarcasm.

4) The most recent "Robot Hugs" Strip:

Considering how close we are to Halloween, I was kind of expecting the central character to be in costume, in the final panel.

5) Putting this behind a cut, because I'm mostly Not!Evil... Posting it at all because I'm a Bit!Evil:

Lyrics for an earworm -- click at your own risk )

6) An update on adding split pea protein powder to my diet (On healthcare-provider's recommendation): It's still totally grabbing on to the acidic flavor compounds in whatever beverage I blend it into. This makes coffee taste tasteless, but it makes strong, acidic, juices (such as unsweetened pomegranate juice) less puckery without sugar. But, for me, it turns out most palatable with pureed veggies as a thickener for soups and sauces.
capriuni: Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor in a street scene, with a handwritten 12 (12)
1) The death of Davros. Not because of my feelings of anger and ick around the Davros-driven Genesis origin, but because I want to see what would happen after Davros. How would the Dalek culture evolve from that point on, without his megalomaniac thumb on the scale?*

2) Have creatures of the same (or similar) species as the "Monsters" in "Flatline" be the Goodies. After all, we never did learn the original beings' motives -- they may have been a rogue group of mad scientists, or criminals on the run (see also: the Slitheen). Part of the conflict would be can the Doctor overcome his prejudice against beings of an entire dimension?

3) The return of the Rill and their "chumblies," from Galaxy Four. Mainly because they are a truly alien alien (they breathe ammonia, instead of oxygen) an that would raise a logistical obstacle to overcome, if the Rill and Team TARDIS are to save the day together. You don't always have to make the big baddie bigger and badder to raise the stakes. Also, the Beeb has a special effects budget to do the Rill justice, now.

*Spoilerific footnote to #1 )
capriuni: Text: "Everyone! Grab a spoon. We need to Move the Ocean!" (Ocean)

This one was inspired by a comment from [personal profile] jesse_the_k, yesterday:

Sometimes concrete progress happens.

Actually, to be honest, the very first thing I thought of, reading that, was the quote from the Fourth Doctor, explaining how he defeated the story's Villain: "Well, to be fair, I did have a couple of gadgets he didn't -- like a teaspoon and an open mind." (<-- paraphrased, maybe?)

But that's more evocative of a singular victory over a single foe, and not as fitting for something like dismantling the hegemony of bigotry (pick your ism, or pick all of them) in our culture. Besides, it's copyrighted by the Beeb. And I wanted something copyrighted by me (I'm contemplating making this a shirt and/or button (Badge) design for my Zazzle shop).

Snaggable with credit to CapriUni.
capriuni: "Random" in mixed fonts, with "Stuff" in French Script on a red label obscurring a common obscenity. (random)
'Cause I can't guarantee I'll remember Five Things on Friday:

1) The "Robot Hugs" strip, dated 2015-10-06 gave me a chuckle:

Artistically speaking, I love the way they render the softness of their cats' fur -- especially the fur just at the inside of the ears (For those who don't follow this strip, the grey cat is named "Hippo" and the orange cat is named "Oskar"). Here's an announcement on their site which features the felines photographically:

2) There is a fair amount of chatter in Doctor Who fandom -- some playful and some combative (as is typical) -- about the Doctor's age. Does he lie about it? Has he forgotten? Has he ever known it, in the first place?

Cut for length and (minor?) spoilers for *Day of the Doctor* and *Listen* )

So -- how would you answer that question, if you were in the Doctor's shoes?
capriuni: text: "5 things" (5 things)
1: How long do you think it'll be before this recent picture of Pluto (7-7-2015) gets turned into memes, macros, and icons everywhere?

{... give me an hour, maybe, at least for here? ;-)}

2: On this week's Radiolab (Wednesday), there was an interview with two men who are both completely blind (Audio -- sorry there's no transcript).

The man whose blindness developed gradually decided that to be fully present and connected to the world, he had to break himself of the habit of "Visualizing" anything, and to conceptualize the world entirely using his other four senses. Because to do otherwise would mean clinging to his memory of a world that doesn't exist anymore.

The man who lost his sight in a single, devastating, moment insisted that to retain your full humanity, you have to imagine a visual world, even if you have to work at it, because humans are visual creatures, full stop.

Yeah. You can probably guess which side of the argument I side with; I'd be more sympathetic to the second man, if he hadn't insisted what was true for him was true for 6,999,999,999 other people.

Anyway, it occurred to me afterward that, compared to blind people, we sighties really live in a 2-D world (well, 3-D, but that's only if you include "Time"). Compared to the actual space around us, the surfaces of our retinas are really, really, flat. After all, that's the only reason we can get away with trompe-loeil at all.

3. The weather is brain-meltingly hot and humid, here. So this item will only be two sentences long.

4. Doctor Who Series 9 will start September 19th! Permission to Squee? I still don't have any headphones or speakers, so I don't know how the official trailer sounds.


Does it seem like Capaldi's hair is channeling the spirit of Doctor Four? Or is that just me? ;-)

5. Speaking of dates in the calender being closer than they appear, I don't think I'll be able to meet my self-imposed date for getting Monsters' Legacy: Disability, Culture and Identity self-published. I mean, maybe I could. But only if I worked a lot faster than I seem to be able to at the moment (*points to #3*), and only if I skipped getting the prose portions beta-read. And I don't want to skip that. *sigh*
capriuni: The 12th Doctor Clara, captioned: "Can I talk about Planets, now?" (Planets)

You see, I have these personal "Rules" (okay, guidelines or, at least, preferences) for [non-default] icons:

1) I prefer to use icons I make for myself -- unless I find one that satisfies my other preferences and is also so beautiful, I can't resist snagging it (but only with permission, of course).

2) They should illustrate the dominant sentiment of the specific post to which they are attached.

3) It should be a sentiment that at least has the potential to be a relatively frequent recurring theme -- "one offs" aren't worth the time it takes to make one.

4) If I use an icon image celebrating a fandom, I prefer it to be a fandom I actually belong to. No matter how clever, funny, or beautiful an icon is, I won't snag a "Game of Thrones" or "Walking Dead" icon, for example ... But -- if I see a whole bunch of beautiful icons from a particular show, on a bunch of different friends' journals, I'll take those as recommendations to at least check a show out.

And finally -- and most important (in my mind):

5) The sentiment expressed in a fandom icon should be consistent with the sentiment expressed in the moment used to illustrate it. For example: screen-capping a character in a sad or angry moment, and sticking a silly or absurdist caption on it (or vice-versa) just strikes me as wrong.

So: each "Doctor Who" icon in my collection represents a moment where I've thought: "This show is expressing a truth about myself, and/or the world, and/or my relationship to the world, that I wish to share with others."

In the past (in the "Naughties", before the reboot) I had several different "Doctor Who" icons -- all inspired by the "Classic" era. This is the first time I've been moved to make a bunch of icons from the current season -- because this current season has moved me with its many small moments of emotional truth.

This latest icon was inspired by a string of disappointments and I was feeling down, and I really want to be distracted by talking about squeeful things, so:

"Can I talk about the planets, now?" (or maybe how we landed a probe on a freaking comet?).
capriuni: Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor in a street scene, with a handwritten 12 (12)
...For weeks, now -- ever since "Forest of the Night." It feels like forever, 'cause I've been holding back until after the Finale.

But --

The only thing I've been actively doing, today, is finding ways to avoid writing it. This could be because I don't want the season to be over already. Or it could just be that writing up a detailed critique of each episode in a single round-up post feels like a lot of work. And I'm didn't sleep all that well last night, so I'm tired and headachey. It's probably both. But I'll blame tiredness, and make this a quick-n-lazy "placeholder" post, with percentage/letter grades for each episode, only -- no commentary or reasons. I'll do my commentary in another post (or several? Maybe I'll spread the squee and criticism out over the coming weeks, to tide me over 'til the Christmas Special?).

Okay, so Here Goes:

"Deep Breath" -- 93% (A)
'Into the Dalek" -- 91% (A)
'Robot of Sherwood" 86% (B+)
"Listen" -- 84% (B)
"Time Heist" -- 75% (C)
"The Caretaker" -- 75% (C)
"Kill the Moon" -- 45% (F)
"Mummy on the Orient Express" -- 95% (A+)
"Flatline' -- 95% (A+)
"In the Forest of the Night" -- 57% (F)
"Dark Water" -- 97% (A+)
"Death in Heaven" -- 97% (A+)

Plain Average for the overall season (All Episodes given equal weight, rounded up to the nearest whole point): 83% (B)
capriuni: Matt Smith (11th Doctor) Thumbs Up (Absolutely!)
I heard this report on the NPR, yesterday morning, and I just had to share, 'cause I have a feeling that it would give several folks in my circles a bout of science-squee:

New Clock May End Time as We Know It (Audio with text article version of the same story):

(First Quote):
At the nearby University of Colorado Boulder is a clock even more precise than the one O'Brian watches over. The basement lab that holds it is pure chaos: Wires hang from the ceilings and sprawl across lab tables. Binder clips keep the lines bunched together.

In fact, this knot of wires and lasers actually is the clock. It's spread out on a giant table, parts of it wrapped in what appears to be tinfoil. Tinfoil?

"That's research grade tinfoil," says Travis Nicholson, a graduate student here at the JILA, a joint institute between NIST and CU-Boulder. Nicholson and his fellow graduate students run the clock day to day. Most of their time is spent fixing misbehaving lasers and dealing with the rats' nest of wires. ("I think half of them go nowhere," says graduate student Sara Campbell.)
(End Quote)

TARDIS interior, anyone? ;-)

(Second Quote)
"Scientists can make these clocks into exquisite devices for sensing a whole bunch of different things," O'Brian says. Their extraordinary sensitivity to gravity might allow them to map the interior of the earth, or help scientists find water and other resources underground.

A network of clocks in space might be used to detect gravitational waves from black holes and exploding stars.

They could change our view of the universe.

They just may not be able to tell us the time.
(end quote)
capriuni: A watercolor sketch of a small green troll with blue eyes (Eloise 2)
If I were following the current Internet Meme, I'd save this for #ThrowbackThursday. But Saturday is "Doctor Who Day," and I can't think of a better time to post these pieces.

Some context: I originally posted these two pieces of writing on the usenet newsgroup Rec.Arts.Drwho (aka "RADW") during the deepest, darkest time of the "Doctor Who Wilderness Years" (remember Usenet? It was the only game in town for "social networking" before "Social Networking" had a name).

First, I believe this is the first thing I ever posted to RADW, on September, 29, 1999. I'd been lurking there for a week or two, fresh from reading the novelization of "Ghostlight," and realizing just how much the character of the Doctor enriched my life. The discussion (some would say "Flamewar") dominating the threads at that time was about whether the Doctor was womb-born, and half-human (as put forth in the "TV Movie"), or whether he was fully alien, and had been genetically engineered on a "Loom" (as had been put forth in a recent series of original novels).

Mushy, OTT, love letter to Rec.Arts.DrWho )

Second bits of context:

A) Rec.Arts.DrWho and its sibling newsgroup, Alt.Drwho.Creative, are the only places on the Internet where I've found the socio-linguistic habit of naming trolls by specific prefixes -- as "Pro-" or "Anti-" 'Tribes;' for some reason I still can't quite discern, the most deeply entrenched flamewar was a three-sided conflict between the Pro-Troughton, Pro-Pertwee, and Anti-McCoy trolls. B) There was a particular thread, intended to embarrass and shame the trolls into good behavior, I think, called "The Weekly Stats," which listed each thread title in descending order, according to how many posts it contained. The following post (originally written March 12, 2000) makes reference to both these things (it also contains my first attempt at Doctor Who fanfic):

What it means to be a 'Pro-Fun' Troll )

Final Thoughts )
capriuni: Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor in a street scene, with a handwritten 12 (12)
In my previous post, I wrote:

The more I see of Moffat's writing, the more I'm convinced he's an Epicurean philosopher -- and not in the "Iron Chef" sort of way. I approve.

And I realized that, although I was familiar with some of the basic ideas of Epicurean thought, it's been a long time since I've read any words actually ascribed to him or his followers. So I went a-hunting. And here are the passages that made me go: "A-Hah! Yes!" [/voice=Eleventh Doctor] in my head:

(From Letter to Menoeceus. [this is the bit that I'm reminded of most by Moffat's writings])

  • The wise man does not deprecate life nor does he fear the cessation of life. The thought of life is no offense to him, nor is the cessation of life regarded as an evil. And even as men choose of food not merely and simply the larger portion, but the more pleasant, so the wise seek to enjoy the time which is most pleasant and not merely that which is longest.

  • Bits that made me o_O, considering he was a contemporary of Alaxander the Great, rather than Isaac Newton )
    capriuni: A watercolor sketch of a small green troll with blue eyes (Eloise 2)
    ...I don't think I've done a New Who episode review since Series 1, episode five (?) So Team Moffat and Capaldi must have done something right to get me my fannish energy back. Good job, them.

    In pro-fun troll tradition, I shall praise what I enjoyed before criticizing what I didn't (in reverse squee order, rather than chronological)

    1. Capaldi -- all of him. But specifically, his sense of timing and rhythm. And the way he inhabited his body as he shifted, gradually, into his new character.

      Spoilers begin here )

      In conclusion, the final score:

      Squeeful things = 7
      Annoying things = 5

      Importance of Squeeful things: High
      Importance of Annoying things: Low
    capriuni: Matt Smith (11th Doctor) Thumbs Up (Absolutely!)
    In a way that I haven't been since 1996 (My disappointment in the "TV Movie" *cough*failed pilot*cough* has muted nearly all twitterpation since then -- but not this time)... There may be deep, philosophical, self-identity, reasons for this ... or maybe not.

    Behind a cut, because I don't remember how out of date my *Doctor Who* filter is )

    (I need a new Doctor Who icon...)


    capriuni: A black field crossed by five parallel lighting bolts in blue, gold, green, red, and purple (Default)

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