OMG

[ Shocked Mood: Shocked ]
If this is to be RTD’s last fling on Doctor Who as head writer, he is certainly going out with a bang. If you have seen the trailer for Stolen Earth you already know he’s throwing the kitchen sink at this one!

All his previous companions are there except Mickey. Torchwood are involved as is Sarah Jane and Luke and there is a small but crucial role for Harriet Jones (former Prime Minister). There is a visit to the much mentioned Shadow Proclamation for the Doctor and Donna.

As for the action, the Daleks are up to their old tricks again and have managed to transport the Earth across space as part of some diabolical plan being hatched by Davros – yes he’s back! I’ve been hoping for his return since the revamped series began.

RTD has managed to pull it all together brilliantly and set up a cliffhanger that was a shock to me – how they have kept it secret I don’t know – maybe I am not visiting the right sites! I won’t tell you what has happened but my 10 year old son was in floods of tears at the end of the episode.

Just brilliant I can’t wait for next week now – especially as they didn’t have their normal trailer at the end of the program – I’m more excited about a children’s show than a man in his forties has any right to be. I’m off to watch it all again. Very Happy

Making Money

[ Neutral Mood: Neutral ]
[ Listening to Laurent Garnier Laboratoire Mix Currently: Listening to Laurent Garnier Laboratoire Mix ]
Finished reading Terry Pratchett’s latest paperback tonight. It was another solid entry into the series without being outstanding.

Having revolutionised the Post Office, Moist von Lipwig finds himself in charge of the Royal Bank and Mint alongside the chairman of the bank – a dog called Mr Fusspot.

The best thing about this book – along with any other book where he has a prominent role – is Lord Vetinari. I love the way the other characters tie themselves in knots around him as they try to figure out what his schemes are and inevitably get it wrong. There is some great moments in the first third of the book as Lipwig tries to avoid having anything to do with the running of the bank.

The next book, coming out in September, is going to be a non-Discworld children’s book called Nation. I was hoping for another Tiffany Aching book – A Hat Full of Sky is one of my favourite Pratchett books – but it will be interesting to see what he comes up with as it’s been a while since he wrote a non-Discworld book.

Stargate Atlantis Season 5

[ Very Sad Mood: Very Sad ]
I watched the season 5 opener this morning. Got to say I am really pretty disappointed but not surprised. I thought that the season 4 finale was mediocre at best and the season starts with a whimper rather than a bang.

I hope the writers aren’t losing it because, although it has its flaws, Atlantis is a show I have really enjoyed up to now.

There is some hope. Jewel Staite and Robert Picardo have their names on the credits so hopefully we see a lot more of them. Picardo is taking over as expedition leader so should be on screen a fair bit which is great – I love this guy.

So a big improvement is required but I’ll stay tuned to see what is in store.

Life on Mars

[ Confused Mood: Confused ]
Just seen the first episode in the US remake of Life on Mars. It was pretty much a word for word remake of the British version.

Apart from the obvious differences in location and American references to the Seventies, the main difference was that there was no Chris. Writing him out of the series maybe allows them to save the 10 minutes or so that they need for ad breaks.

It was interesting but I preferred the original and the original actors – Colm Meaney doesn’t cut it as Gene Hunt for me, at least in this first episode.

Midnight

[ Angelic Mood: Angelic ]
The latest Doctor Who episode is the one were Russell T. Davies proves he still has what it takes to write a great Doctor Who script.

The Doctor and Donna are taking a break and the Doctor leaves Donna behind as he goes on a day trip. Unfortunately, the ship he is travelling in breaks down on the surface of the inhospitable, lifeless planet and there is a knock on the door…

This is a nice little episode filmed mostly in the claustrophobic interior of the ship. When the ship breaks down and an alien presence makes itself known, the terror, confusion and paranoia of the passengers is well played out.

Next week we start building towards the end of series finale with the return of Rose Tyler. After all the teasers throughout the series, it will be interesting to see how they bring her back.

Fringe

[ Silly Mood: Silly ]
Watched the first episode of Fringe this morning. It is a sort of X-Files for the 21st century. When a plane full of skeletons lands at a US airport, FBI agent Olivia Dunham finds herself in increasingly bizarre territory as she tries to find a cure for her partner who has become infected with a similar condition to those on the plane.

I loved this episode from the opening sequence on the plane onwards. It looks good. The story was pretty good and there were enough teasers to conspiracies and hidden technologies for me to want to watch again. I only hope they don’t lose themselves in obfuscation like the X-Files tended to do.

So a good start and maybe it will develop into something that will wipe away the memories of the last couple of X-Files seasons. The new movie will certainly have to come up with something impressive to match this.

Genesis of the Daleks

[ Sleepy Mood: Sleepy ]
An online DVD store in the UK had some old Doctor Who DVDs going cheap so I bought myself four – 3 Dalek ones and a Cyberman one. The first one that I watched was Genesis of the Daleks starring Tom Baker and written by Terry Nation. I grew up with the Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker Doctors so I probably saw this storyline when it was first broadcast in 1975.

I’ve got to say that this is a magnificent story. The Doctor has been set back in time to Skaro to stop the creation of the Daleks. The tone is very dark for a children’s TV series with thinly veiled references to totalitarianism, genocide and the holocaust. It stands up to the current series very well – OK the sets are a bit dodgy and Tom hams it up when he is attacked by the Dalek biological organisms – but all in all an excellent example of what the show was able to produce on a shoestring budget compared with today’s series.

Library Tales Too

[ Happy Mood: Happy ]
Well the latest Doctor Who has wrapped up the Library two parter by Steven Moffat. Like all good writers he has answered most of the mysteries set up in the first part while leaving some open for exploration in further episodes.

Listening to the commentary for this episode, it would appear that Moffat has known about his takeover for a lot longer than it has been known generally. I wonder if these last two episodes have been a chance for him to set up some new mysteries surrounding the Doctor than will be investigated during his tenure as lead writer.

His episodes have consistently been among the best of the revamped series and these two set in the Library are no different. Great stuff.

Dearly Devoted Dexter

[ Shocked Mood: Shocked ]
I was dragged from the TV in the middle of the second part of the latest Doctor Who episode to have a water fight with my wife and youngest son. So, while I am hiding until the episode ends, I can write a quick blog entry.

This morning I finished reading the second Dexter novel. It is a part hard to talk about the details because since I haven’t watched all the episodes of season 1 and none of season 2, I don’t know how the continuity fits together if at all – I know enough to know that the ending of book 1 and season 1 are supposed to be different and that the main storyline in season 2 bears no resemblance to the main storyline in book 2.

It was not a bad read and seemed to have a lot more humour injected into it mainly situated around Dexter’s uncomprehending slide into engagement with Rita. The body count is down too since Dexter’s own activities are curtailed by a vigilant Doakes and the main villain of the book does not actually kill his victims.

As with the first book, the narrative being from the point of view of a inhuman sociopath means that there are not many emotional links that can be made with Dexter and the characters he interacts with in the course of events. One thing I am starting to feel annoyed/cheated by is the number of holes in the plot that the author doesn’t deal with – the main two in this novel being the reaction (or lack of it) by Deborah to the revelations in the first book and the lack of anything happening when Doakes is captured by the villain.

However, if you can suspend your disbelief enough, then it is a fairly entertaining ride but I am glad that I borrowed them from the library rather than buying them which is what I was thinking of doing.