on September 13, 2011
This is the *Complete* Sixth Series featuring everything from where the Complete Fifth Series leaves off. It's not just Part 1:Doctor Who: Series Six, Part One [Blu-ray] & Part 2: Doctor Who: The Sixth Series - Part 2 [Blu-ray], but also the Christmas Special Doctor Who: A Christmas Carol [Blu-ray] which preceded it. The 14 episodes are as follows:
A Christmas Carol
The Impossible Astronaut
The Day of the Moon
The Curse of the Black Spot
The Doctor's Wife (not who you think)
The Rebel Flesh
The Almost People
A Good Man Goes to War
Let's Kill Hitler
The Girl Who Waited
The God Complex
The Wedding of River Song
Slightly more than the sum of the parts, but to quote River Song, "it's early days" and the price should go down from competition. I have mine on order so I can capture any price drops. :-)
Also included are the following extras (for the first time available):
Meanwhile in the Tardis feature - Newly filmed scenes telling what happens between the episodes:
Bad Night (Runtime: 3m 37s)
Good Night (Runtime: 4m 50s)
First Night (Runtime: 2m 13s)
Last Night (Runtime: 3m 32s)
Up All Night (Runtime: 1m 55s)
Comic Relief 2011 mini episodes - Space and Time (Approx. 8m; These are worth watching multiple times!)
The Impossible Astronaut (Runtime: 1m 48s)
Curse of the Black Spot (Runtime: 1m 23s)
A Good Man Goes to War (Runtime: 1m 36s)
Let's Kill Hitler (Runtime: 1m 55s)
The Wedding of River Song (Runtime: 1m 11s)
Doctor Who Confidential featurettes - An inside look at each episode (Note: These are shortened versions of "Doctor Who Confidential", lasting about 10 minutes each, not the original 45 minute versions shown only in the UK. I've always been disappointed in this.)
Monster Files featurettes - Get under the skin and inside the minds of the new Doctor's most challenging opponents
Trailers and Trails feature
UPDATE (Oct 9th): What it does NOT contain is the "Doctor Who at the Proms 2010" Special that was included with the Christmas Carol single. While disappointing, it is still nice to have the bevy of previously unreleased material.
on September 30, 2011
Honestly, when you really get down to it, this is the better deal. I originally was going to do just the Part 1 and Part 2 DVDs as I already had the Xmas special, but those DVDs have just the episodes and maybe one or two special features each....compared to THIS set which has these features attached:
A Christmas Carol, The Impossible Astronaut, Day Of The Moon, The Curse Of The Black Spot, The Doctor's Wife, The Rebel Flesh, The Almost People, A Good Man Goes To War, Let's Kill Hitler, Night Terrors, The Girl Who Waited, The God Complex, Closing Time, The Wedding of River Song. SPECIAL FEATURES INCLUDE:
5 X `Night And The Doctor' Additional Scenes
2 X `Comic Relief' Sketches
4 X `The Monster Files'
4 X Prequels
14 X `Doctor Who Confidential' Cut-Downs
`Doctor Who Confidential: A Nights' Tale'
THAT is a much better deal if not for the Confidential stuff but also for the prequels, comedy relief sketches and additional scenes you will NEVER see otherwise. SO its like 20 more bucks....big freaking deal. You get so much more cool stuff along with it. THIS is the 6th Series you want to buy!
It is so hard for me to believe that "Dr. Who" is considered a children's program in England. Maybe the new Who's, especially with Tennant and Smith, are changing that. They have pretty "big" themes, interesting and exciting to sci-fi loving adults. I am a true-blue fan, collecting the DVD sets of the original Dr. Who's (which I originally recorded onto VHS from the TV!) as well as the new Dr. Who's.
Series 6 of Dr. Who was produced and aired in two sections, with a short hiatus inbetween. The first seven episodes were broadcast in spring 2011. The last six episodes are still being aired in Sept. 2011. That is why Series 6 was broken into two separate DVD releases, known as Part 1 and Part 2.
Before Series 6 Part 1 started, there was the 2010 Christmas Special, "A Christmas Carol". I watched that on TV and the ending was pretty emotional, a thoughtful well-done Christmas-y Dickens-like show. "A Christmas Carol" was NOT included in the DVD Series 6 - Part 1. However, it IS included in this "Doctor Who: The Complete Sixth Series".
Following is a list of all the episodes for Series 6 which are included in this Complete Sixth Series. A couple of them are just plain good old adventure stories, such as "The Curse of the Black Spot", with a great twist on the myth of the siren and her ability to call sailors to their doom. "The Doctor's Wife" is also a favorite of mine. The Doctor answers a Time Lord distress call and is trapped with the gruesome Auntie and Uncle and the downright weird Idris. But Idris isn't who or what she seems and her interaction with the Doctor is fabulous.
Other episodes have themes which carry forward into following episodes, and, to tell the truth, I sometimes had a little trouble keeping track of everything. But that's one good reason for me to buy them on DVD, I get to watch this great sci-fi storytelling all over again, and catch the nuances and details I might have missed the first time.
1. "A Christmas Carol" - Awesome story of forgiveness and life-altering love.
2. "The Impossible Astronaut" - Finally we find out just what "The Silence" is. It was The Silence that caused the TARDIS to explode at the end of Series 5. Worth watching just to see a puzzled but game Richard Nixon (played excellently by Stuart Milligan).
3. "Day of the Moon" - A continuation and completion of the Doctor's dealings with The Silence. The circumstances reminded me some of the movie, "Memento". What would you do if you could not remember something as soon as you turned away from it?
4. "The Curse of the Black Spot"
5. "The Doctor's Wife"
6. "The Rebel Flesh" - Part 1 of a two-part story. A solar tsunami throws the TARDIS onto 22nd century Earth. We know of robots used in conditions where a human could not work. What if you could create dopplegangers of yourself to do the hazardous work? [Sidebar: Recommended sci-fi reading, "Kiln People", by David Brin.]
7. "The Almost People" - Part 2 continuation. What if those dopplegangers decided to rebel?
8. "A Good Man Goes to War" - This is where the background story gets very convoluted. An Almost People is involved, and Amy and Rory's baby, Melody, is kidnapped. River refuses to help the doctor because it is during this war that he will learn her identity. THAT is worth waiting for. I didn't see it coming.
9. "Let's Kill Hitler" - A human crew from the future wants to kill Hitler and change the future. A dilemma. Who wouldn't think the world would be a better place if Hitler could be stopped before he reached full power? Convoluted back story.
[I stand corrected. A comment correctly points out that the humans didn't want to kill Hitler, they wanted to collect him for incarceration for his crimes against humanity.]
10. "Night Terrors" - Eight-year old George is terrified of monsters in his bedroom. But, naturally, it's not that simple, nothing with the Doctor ever is.
11. "The Girl Who Waited" - The Doctor takes Amy and Rory to Apalapucia for a well-deserved vacation. Unfortunately, they land before they find out that the whole planet is suffering from a plague that kills creatures with two hearts. Amy gets separated, and waits 36 years for the doctor to find her, and she's not happy about it.
12. "The God Complex" - The Doctor and friends are trapped in an alien "hotel", where opening the wrong door leads to possession and death.
13. "Closing Time" - Remember Craig Owens? The Docter moved in and became his roommate in the Series 5 episode, "The Lodger". The Doctor decides to visit him. And Cybermen show up somehow. This episode hasn't been aired as the time I write this review.
14. "The Wedding of River Song" - There are some spoilers out there about what is in the last episode, but the actual plot is a closely guarded secret until it airs on October 1, 2011. Time on Earth is set at April 22, 2011, 5:02 pm. Not exactly frozen, what's actually happened is that ALL of time occurs at the same time. This may be due to a woman named River Song.
on September 25, 2011
Loved this episode. Lots of good action. We get a chance to see Amy and Rory, though briefly. Craig is wonderful and goes far in helping soothe the Doctor's feeling that he is a harm to anyone near him.
Craig is fantastic.
The Doctor with the baby is sooooooooo funny. Stormageddon who calls everyone other than his parents "peasants."
The ending was AWESOME! Yep. We see River again. Can't wait to see the next episode.
Matt Smith was really amazing. So many faces. The grieving doctor, knowing he is going to be facing his own death soon. The damaged friend who needs a friend. The amazing hero. The sad and tired ole man. AND! A store clerk! Such an amazing range of emotions and role and he pulls it out with aplomb.
PS: Many of the other reviews never actually watched the episode, but complained about tech issues when the episode was unavailable. That is clearly shameful and childish behavior.
on May 29, 2011
I know Amazon is new to this digital delivery thing, so I'll cut them some slack. Their customer service has been wonderful, but that doesn't change the fact that there is no consistency or communication regarding what should be a weekly on-time thing. Episode five had issues queueing, and now episode six is not available (Because of Memorial Day? What, people don't watch TV on holidays now?) apparently until next week. This means that we'll be a week behind on viewing, which on the internet with its now now now spoiler culture is a virtual eternity.
I predict that Amazon and iTunes will notice a sizable drop in purchases of the next two episodes as fans find *alternative* sources. Which is sad, because I'm more than willing to pay for a timely well-produced product. When I am made to wait for no other reason than some conglomerate's ephemeral distribution contracts, I say screw copyright law, I'm getting it somewhere else.
on November 10, 2011
I've been a fan of the Doctor going back to the days of Jon Pertwee and although he was fun and interesting in his first (half dozen) incarnations, it was pretty much a standard sci-fi tv show... monstor of the week, lots of action, lots of techno-babble conveniently cropping up to solve whatever problem the Doctor was facing.
Then Russell T. Davies revived it in 2005 and it was a whole new ball game. It became apparent very quickly that "making it all make some kind of unified sense" was one of the main focuses of the new series. If something got mentioned in one story/episode, you could bet it would be supported by subsequent episodes, making the Whoniverse seem more real, solid and believable.
Then Stephen Moffett took over and, while his first season at the helm (Season 5) was pretty delightful and had some lovely twists and turns in it, Season 6 is the first stumble that is really noticable. It has to do with the "season arc" (the main, continuing plot that drives every episode of the season.) For the first few seasons since the "reboot" in '05, those season arcs were kept simple... Bad Wolf, for example, in season's 1 and 2, or the missing planets scattered throughout season 4 paying out in the season finale.
But in Season 6.... huh?
It looks like Moffett wanted to start the season with a shocker (the Doctor dies!) but then couldn't figure out a way to resolve that without doing a bit of cheating. And although it might be a perfectly valid "resolution" in terms of a TV story, it wound up damaging the Whoniverse as a whole.
The premise was, the Doctor is going to die (for real, to the point of destroying his body so no more regenerations), making it look like the entire show would have to come to an end when we finally looped around to the other point of view on his death that we witness in the opening episode. We are told repeatedly his death at that time in that place is a 'fixed point in time'. Fair enough.
In fiction the audience can only know what is true and real based on what they are told in the course of the story. And since season 1 we have been told, over and over, that a "fixed point in time" can not be changed, no matter what anyone does, because it is rooted in the pure mechanics of the universe itself, not on anyone's perception of the event. It was the reason the Doctor couldn't save Rose's father, or change a number of other events he might have wanted to, because his attempts to change them would ultimately fail. The universe would not allow them to be changed.
So how does the Doctor's death get resolved? The Doctor "fools" the mechanics of the universe itself by faking his death? So, either "fixed points in time" really can be changed (in which case there are no limits to what the Doctor can do and good luck trying to build drama about fixed points in time going forward), or it wasn't a fixed point in time and everyone was just too stupid not to realize that. But then it had to be a fixed point in time because the premise of the entire final episode was that time itself was broken by the Doctor not dying. It had genuine, palpable universally mechanical effects. We saw that. So... the actual mechanics of the universe are stupid aqnd can be fooled?
The other thing that is a cheat is the introduction of the whole "the Doctor lies" concept. So now, after five seasons of having nothing else to depend on to determine what is true and what is not about any situation being only what the Doctor tells us, suddenly we can't depend on that either? Well, then now everything is up for grabs. We won't know if anything is true or not, because we get that truth from the Doctor and he's lying about it now?
It's a minor point, admittedly, but important in that such details have been one of the things that helped make the Whoniverse believable, stable and gave it much of its epic scope. It's why it's Doctor Who, because it had a higher standard and needs to be held to it or it becomes just another tv show, waiting its turn to jump that proverbial shark.
Now it seems that everything is up for grabs and that nothing is beyond the Doctor's abilities. It's rather tough to build tension and drama when your lead character is, in essense, God, and can lilterally do anything he wants.
Hopefully Moffett will stop throwing away such details in the future or making up some convenient techno-babble throw away dialogue to explain them away. That's the old Star Trek trick and it cheapens the universe in which "Blink" and "Turn Left" happened. It just weakens the whole concept and robs the show of the thing that made it so superior and special. And that would lose viewers. And that would get it cancelled. Again. And that would be sad.
on June 14, 2011
This was an excellent round up of a lot of issues. They left us clues in all prior episodes to what was coming. I am very pleased. So much action. In this episode, you get to see a lot of the old characters from Season 5 and 6. But the ending? Ah! Delicious. Who is River Song? What an amazing ending. Nope. Not saying more. Spoilers.
on September 9, 2011
Please note that there are SPOILERS below.
I, unlike most of the other reviewers, didn't like this episode. I didn't even find it creepy. The dolls just didn't do it for me. I think I can best express why by comparing this episode to series 3's Blink.
I loved Blink. I think the difference between Blink and Night Terrors was that Blink drew us, the audience, into the adventure. Night Terrors utterly failed to do this. Blink gave us enough information to keep us wondering about what happens next. Night Terrors hardly gave us anything until the Doctor suddenly realizes that the kid's from planet whatchamacallit, which didn't even really explain how the kid has some of the powers he's exhibiting. That doesn't give the audience any chance to get into it. The weeping angels we knew to fear very quickly, and there was so much to wonder about them. The dolls, on the other hand, show up late in the episode, and we have no reason to fear them until 2/3 of the way through the episode (when the landlord is assimilated).
Blink felt like it was about normal people, and that took us (more normal people) for the ride along with the characters. Night Terrors was really about the Doctor being confused for 40 minutes and an alien with weird powers. Amy and Rory were scared, but I got no sense of real danger. And the landlord (who isn't likable) being assimilated didn't serve to tie us in emotionally. Personally, the lack of relation to the characters here kept me from being scared.
The thing that really killed this episode for me was Rory's reaction to Amy's assimilation. It was like he knew that it was no big deal and she'd be back shortly. Rory rocked it in Let's Kill Hitler by punching Hitler to protect everyone else and by taking the lead in going after Melody (and punching someone else in the process!). In Night Terrors he lacked the fervor that he had as "The Last Centurion." I'm getting tingles rewatching the beginning of A Good Man Goes to War where Rory demands that the cybermen tell him where Amy is. There's none of that when Amy gets assimilated. I don't think Arthur Darvill's acting was the issue; I think he did the best he could with some poor writing.
2/5. If I rewatch this season, I'll be skipping this one. Casual viewers can skip this episode without any worries of missing anything in the story arc.
on May 15, 2011
well I'll say it. What a woman/11 dimensional matrix folded into a mechanical construct!
Suranne Jones played the charactor in question. She was excellent! I loved the way she and Smith portrayed a relationship that had existed for 700 years and was brand new at the same time. Her lines were so funny she made me laugh out loud during the show. I loved her calling him a thief. Her thief. It happened to be the literal truth. On every level. I loved this episode and thank Mr. Gaiman for it as well as hope for more him in future.
The whole name/Sexy thing was perfect! Do you remember when Rose and Sarah Jane were talking about how the Doctor would stroke the TARDIS. It made perfect sense that he would fall for the magic box who stole him.
I will have to make a point of watching her other shows. She was sexy, mad and truly The Doctor's Wife. Sorry, River but you may marry The Doctor but he will always love the TARDIS and now that we have met her, I can understand his choices.
"Biting, it's like kissing but there's a winner." - Idris / TARDIS / Sexy
Season five of the world's longest running Sci-Fi television show introduced us to the Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith). Like all the previous Doctors had to spend some time figuring out just who he was and what kind of Doctor he was going to be. With his bowtie and Fez hat, Season Five lead us to believe that the Eleventh Doctor was a fun-loving cosmic tourist, out to see the Universe with his companion the Amazing Amy Pond and her beloved Rory. But it turns out that isn't who the Eleventh Doctor is at all.
The Eleventh Doctor is Batman.
In Doctor Who - The Complete Sixth Series, the character and the storyline take a distinct and drastic tone-shift to Gotham City. Like the 1950s' Batman to the 1980s' Batman, The Doctor went from fun-loving (but dangerous) good times to actual death and cruelty. In an interview, series writer Stephen Moffat has said that this direction-shift was purposeful, and in Season Six he tried to "Batmanize" the Doctor Who series.
By Batmanize, he meant not only the darker tone of the series, but the idea that Batman creates his own enemies. If there was no Batman, there would be no Joker, no Two-Face, no people who define themselves as being in conflict with the Batman. Moffat felt that with The Doctor's legend as a powerful and mighty warrior, he would give rise to people whose sole mission in life is to fight The Doctor, by any means necessary. He also wanted a villain on the level of the Weeping Angels, something terrifying enough that they would enter the Doctor Who mythos along with the Cybermen and the Daleks. To fill that role he gave us The Silence.
It took me awhile to warm up to Moffat's vision. Even though I was totally against Matt Smith when he took over as The Doctor--after deciding that the Tenth Doctor was the greatest of all-time--I was instantly won over by the light-hearted and fun nature of the interpretation. I loved the idea of a magical childhood figure come to life, and was put off by the first episode of Season Six--"The Impossible Astronaut"--which serves up death as an opener and only got darker from there. Sure, there were some lighthearted blasts of entertainment in there, but things were pretty grim. But by the time of the seventh episode, "A Good Man Goes to War," the quality storytelling had won me over and I was totally hooked into Moffat's vision. I saw how terrifying it is when the light-hearted man turns deadly serious.
And Season Six is serious. Without giving away any spoilers, Season Six deals with some big questions for The Doctor. The main one--Who is River Song? -turns out to be an amazing twist that took me by surprise. Even deeper than that, The Doctor must come to grips with why he has Companions when so many of them die, and what is his role in the Universe on the whole? It is some bleak stuff, and the answers aren't really fun. The episode "The Girl Who Waited" was particularly heart-wrenching.
My only disappointment with Series Six was the lack of continuity of emotion. Some of the episodes, like "The Girl Who Waited," were completely devastating to those involved, but with the next episode they were right as rain and back to cracking wise and the best of friends. If you are like me and only watch Doctor Who on DVDs--one right after the other--then it can be disconcerting to see a character developed and then white-washed over the space of two sequential episodes.
The DVD box set itself is adequately excellent. I am glad I waited for the complete sixth season rather than getting the separate Part One and Part Two boxsets. This set includes not only all the episodes, but also the Christmas special, the two Comic Relief sketches, the prequels, and some cool extras like "Monster Files" and Doctor Who Confidential. I know they are planning to come out with a limited-edition set featuring four lenticular prints with various characters. If you are a collector you might want to wait for that. Personally, I care more about what is on the DVDs than what they box is made of, so this set was perfect.