November 22, 2012
I was working ... with some children who were dedicated Dr Who fans, a show that was then beginning its current revival. They asked me if they could watch an episode of the David Tennant incarnation that one of the children had on DVD. The Tennant episodes were slick, hour-long, predictable wound-up narratives of hysteria with expensive FX, bloodthirsty aliens and a pounding Hollywood-style soundtrack. Anyway a large group of children sat together and watched an entire episode placidly and without comment.From a rather curmudgeonly (if appropriate) rant about 3D movies, not without its charms, at Overland.
I suggested that they might want to watch a much older Dr Who episode with an earlier incarnation of the Doctor, and gave them a DVD of Tom Baker’s late 70s Doctor who battles people dressed in papier-mache monster costumes on cardboard sets. Things jump out of cupboards, every 25-minute episode ends with a cliffhanger and the soundtrack is reducible to a few dramatic chords on a Casio keyboard. The children watched one episode in increasing states of terror, and begged me never to show it to them again.