Doctor who s12e03 Orphan 55 - SPOILERS

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How would you rate the episode

5. Tom Baker eat your heart out.
No votes
4. Jon Pertwee level
3. Tried something but didn't quite deliver
2. Trial of a Timelord level
No votes
1. Not even worth pirating
0. If Whovians were Kryptonians, this would be kryptonite
Total votes: 13

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mr friendly guy
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Doctor who s12e03 Orphan 55 - SPOILERS

Post by mr friendly guy » 2020-01-13 08:50am

So lets see. The TARDIS gets dumbed down again. Jesus, now any random teleport can breach its defenses. A simple line with the Doctor being convinced to turn off the defenses so they could be teleported to their holiday destination would have worked. The dumbing down of the TARDIS isn't a deal breaker, but its not a good way to start an episode.

Otherwise the story did use the usual classic Who tropes, of having a mystery like why are they having a holiday resort on an Orphan class (ie should be uninhabitable) planet, and who are the mysterious life forms (spoilers, the Dregs are future mutated humans who failed to get off a polluted earth, get it, dregs of society). This reminds of a similar post apocalyptic future human lifeform, the haemovores from the classic Sylvester McCoy story, the Curse of Fenric. And like those monsters, this future Earth is only a possible timeline.

There were a few contrived things which didn't work for me,like how the hopper virus just happens to be the missing ingredient to synthesise the substance they need to fix the teleporter.

However the pacing just didn't seem right to me, so I am only going to give it 3/5.

Now watch the anti SJWs get triggered. No seriously. People are already complaining about Who being political, and I assume they didn't like the environmental message. Have they seen classical Who? The environmental message is less blatant than say, the Green Death, and that was broadcast in 1973. For those who haven't seen that storyline, a company dumps pollution into a coal mine in Wales, causing mutant maggots whose touch poisons humans turning them green. Come on, that is more blatant than this episode.

Of course I dare say there was another subtle message which flew over these people's head, but I am going to suggest there was a message with the green haired family. The boy Silas knew his stuff with fixing machines, while his dad, the proper mechanic wasn't quite as good. I think the message here is how the older generation re : Boomers have screwed up the environment, and its the next generation that has to fix it, but the older generation isn't listening.
Overall a decent start to season 12 of NuWho and I am hoping they can keep this up.
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Re: Doctor who s12e03 Orphan 55 - SPOILERS

Post by Lost Soal » 2020-01-13 10:38am

My main problem with this episode wasn't the message, it was the fact she left them to die. The teleport couldn't have been through time, they know its earth, go pick them up at the moment The Doctor and crew were beamed out. Instead she spells out the message in case people are too stupid to figure it out.
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Re: Doctor who s12e03 Orphan 55 - SPOILERS

Post by Bedlam » 2020-01-13 02:34pm

This just felt like a mess to me, to many things seemed to be happening none of which seemed to be all that explored.

The message at the end although worthy felt to preachy and was delivered straight to camera rather than actually seeming like something this doctor would say to her companions. The Green Death (and several of the other stories from the same area) are good comparisons, you say they're more blatant but there wasn't a scene of the Doctor explaining it all to the audience, it would clearly be to Jo or the Brig, plus Pertwee seemed more likely to give that sort of speech.

The possible future of humanity idea was, well odd, generally time travel (or at least TARDIS travel) doesn't work that way in Doctor Who, the future is the future rather than a possible future. There have been some exceptions but they usually require a time traveller to interfere (or the god like Fenric), it might be interesting to find out that this time line is actually due to the Master at some point although the Doctor didn't seem to consider this. Alternatively there are several points in the already established time line when you could have earth devastated and inhabited by monsters, the solar flares referred to in the Ark in Space (the finding a train station sign seemed to link to Trial of a timelord which might have been the same event) or the Sunmakers where the whole human race was moved to Pluto after Earth was bled dry. Actually an updated version of that story would be interesting.

Your idea of the mechanic and son was something which didn't occur to me and is interesting, although without any explanation as to why the father was incompetent and the son was so good it just seemed odd. They could have mentioned they were cutting costs and hired the cheapest they could or that the kid was a prodigy. I actually thought when they were introduced that it was going to be a joke about a species that ages backwards and the one that looked like a kid was actually the father.

Although I think they already had to much in the story I do think they could have done more with the Dregs, showing them to be intelligent and in the right and more than just ravening monsters. There was the case scene but presumably the terraforming process would kill them all so the resort was actually a true threat to them all. I did think they were going that way with Benny when the Dregs didn't kill him, but instead they apparently tortured him although he can apparently still calmly ask to be killed at the end of it.

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Re: Doctor who s12e03 Orphan 55 - SPOILERS

Post by Solauren » 2020-01-13 05:47pm

The people that scream about political messages in DR. Who haven't been paying attention to the series at all.

Hell, last season even - Giant mutant Spiders caused by greedy polluting corporate asshole anyone?

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Re: Doctor who s12e03 Orphan 55 - SPOILERS

Post by B5B7 » 2020-01-13 11:00pm

The message at the end was delivered in a heavy handed way by having the Doctor give a direct almost fourth wall breaking speech.
It would have been better more subtly delivered, for example by having the companions and the Doctor have a discussion, where they ask her questions, and she could say how it could have happened.
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