It was better in the olden days…

Written By: Elsie

“People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect but actually, from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint it’s more like a big ball of wibbly-wobbly… timey-wimey… stuff.”

The tenth Doctor, Blink

After watching the first few episodes of the new series of Doctor Who, if you are anything like me you will have had some strong opinions (do not get me started on ‘sonic sunglasses’…). I am not ashamed to say that I have been a ridiculously huge Doctor Who fan pretty much since the show’s revival in 2005, starring the Ninth Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) and companion Rose Tyler (Billie Piper), and why not? What’s not to fall in love with? The series that followed contained brilliantly constructed storylines, humour and science fiction that was easy for anyone to follow. Saturday night was the highlight of the week for me, as well as being the only night of the week that I would have to wake Mum up to check that there weren’t any aliens or supernatural beings hiding in my wardrobe… Those early episodes could be really scary…

There was many a time when the writers of the show succeeded in leaving even older viewers paralysed behind the sofa clutching a cushion and a blunt object. Let’s be honest, who wasn’t seeing a little boy wearing a gas mask asking ‘Are you my mummy?’ for weeks after The Empty Child was shown? Who didn’t lose sleep for fear of closing their eyes after the weeping angels were introduced? (I personally was sleeping with one eye open for longer than I care to admit…). Furthermore the characters certainly played with your emotions. Sure, there were the comical characters of Mickey and Jackie who brought to light the everyday problems faced when a family member is abducted by a strange man who travels through time and space in a police box. Even the Doctor himself has always brought comedy to the stories with his quirky personality, but the relationship between the time traveller and his companions was never taken lightly. The writers made viewers fall hopelessly in love with The Doctor and Rose then snatched their hopes away by Rose’s tragic exit in series 2. I challenge anyone not to cry at the Bad Wolf Bay scene… (“Rose Tyler, I-“... excuse me, I just have something in my eye…)

Unfortunately, being the companion that followed Rose, through no fault of her own I will always slightly resent Martha Jones. However, the brilliance of Doctor Who was still there, and I do think that Donna was also an excellent companion. Personally I think that the series lost its stride somewhere around Matt Smith’s second series playing the 11th Doctor. I don’t feel that Matt Smith was a bad Doctor (following David Tennant was an extremely brave move), on the contrary I thought coupled with companions Amy and Rory he continued the assets of the show excellently i.e. the comedy, fear, engaging stories and emotional attachments. However the storylines took a turn for the worst, growing more and more complicated until not even religious fans such as myself could figure out what the heck was happening. River Song’s storyline is riddled with plot holes (can somebody please explain to me whether The Doctor and River are married or not?!) and once Amy and Rory left, the writers lost me.

Sure, Peter Capoldi gives the show a more classic and retro air, but the storylines just aren’t as good as they used to be and frankly it just isn’t accessible to wide audiences anymore. You have to be either a hard-core Doctor Who fan that has somehow stuck with it (even through the Name of the Doctor fiasco) or somebody who just really likes science fiction. It just isn’t essential viewing anymore, to older fans or to children. Also, the sonic sunglasses are stupid.

You may say that the only reason I have lost interest in Doctor Who is because I have simply grown out of a show that is aimed at viewers half my age, and you may be right. Still, although I refuse to watch the latest episodes, I still insist that the first two series are timeless classics and I will always have love for The Doctor and Rose Tyler, saving the world in a big blue box.

Also, the sonic sunglasses are stupid.