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Topic: The Wedding of River Song ( Spoilers ) (Topic Closed Topic Closed) Post ReplyPost New Topic
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Rob Spalding
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Posted: 13 October 2011 at 12:02pm | IP Logged | 1  

The other reason for the delay next year, I think, is not just the Olympics - we've also got Euro 2012.  That's another 3 weeks of prime time telly where sport is almost always the most watched show.
I keep forgetting to mention it, but those 7-8 weeks of the year, we won't get anything new and shiny because it would just get crushed.
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Knut Robert Knutsen
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Posted: 13 October 2011 at 12:41pm | IP Logged | 2  

Oh, yes. Football. I'm in perpetual denial about that. It's fun to play, but I never enjoyed watching it.
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Bill Mimbu
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Posted: 14 October 2011 at 12:49pm | IP Logged | 3  

Wow, so this is the episode that messed up JB's AFTERMATH series?

After watching it On-Demand last night and being rather underwhelmed with the payoff (again), I now want to read JB's original story...



Edited by Bill Mimbu on 14 October 2011 at 12:50pm
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John Byrne
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Posted: 14 October 2011 at 2:00pm | IP Logged | 4  

Wow, so this is the episode that messed up JB's AFTERMATH series?

Just a demonstration of what can happen when a writer keeps a story "simmering" too long.

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John Byrne
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Posted: 14 October 2011 at 2:03pm | IP Logged | 5  

The Troughton era produced more than 100 half hour episodes in 3 series. Sort of sad that so few still exist.

The Hartnell Doctor gave us something like 45 episodes in the first season alone! Were they all masterpieces, with state of the art special effects?

No.

But they came out when they were supposed to, and cumulatively, they were a lot better than this bigger, brighter, louder season has been.

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Jeremiah Avery
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Posted: 18 October 2011 at 11:09am | IP Logged | 6  

JB, do you think more episodes per season/series would help produce a better arc/tell more interesting stories or would we fall victim to even more decompression storytelling?

To me, it seemed like the first half they were laying the foundation to have a strong mid-season finale but then they seemed to shove a lot into the mid-season premiere and then dragged out the rest of the season with what looked like a series of bottle episodes not really addressing the arc that was initially set up.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 18 October 2011 at 1:32pm | IP Logged | 7  

I think TV shows in general need to lose this "Seasonal Arc" fixation. TV shows of yore were produced as stand-alone episodes, with the result that any single episode, chosen at random, tells a complete story.

Contrast this to DOCTOR WHO where, when I was showing "Vincent and the Doctor" to a couple of friends, I had to provide backstory for a tale that should have stood completely on its own. Rewatching "The Wedding of River Song", or "The Incredible Mary Sue Adventures", I was struck by the fact that someone who had not seen an episode of DOCTOR WHO this season would have been completely lost. Granted, this was the conclusion (sort of) of the Seasonal Arc, but in my opinion it still should have been accessible to a new viewer.

I'll go back to comics. Superman had been in regular publication for almost 20 years when I read my first story, yet everything I needed to know was there. (I had been introduced to the character via the George Reeves TV show, but that was different enough from the comics that the two did not fit together seamlessly -- yet the very first story I read caught me up on all the necessary details, and it was only eight pages long!)

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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 18 October 2011 at 2:16pm | IP Logged | 8  

Thank you, Mr. Byrne!

I've been saying similar things for years. Of course, there are exceptions (currently enjoying BABYLON 5 on DVD, but that was meant to be a five-year arc telling a specific story). That show aside, I feel most shows should be accessible.

The seasonal arc fixation is annoying to be honest and I have to do a lot of explaining to friends or family who come late to a show.

The first episode of STAR TREK that I saw told me everything I need to knew. I knew the Enterprise was on a five-year mission; I knew, within minutes, the role of the Bridge officers; and I needed no knowledge of the Klingons or the Federation, etc. It was all there.

Same with THE A-TEAM or KNIGHT RIDER or STREET HAWK (three of my favourite 80s shows) - it was all there in the intros. There was still some character development at times, maybe not as much as some shows, but it was still there.

And when I first read a Hulk or Spider-Man comic, it wasn't the first issue - but I knew everything I needed to.

A good series, in my opinion, can be rewarding both for the long-term viewer and new viewer. For example, I really like THE INCREDIBLE HULK. A new viewer can appreciate it (and it's all there in the intro), but long-term viewers can also get much out of it, such as Banner's continual quest for a cure, Jack McGee's obsession with capturing the Hulk, etc.

I just find story arcs off-putting. I've made the mistake of doing "research" for shows in the past, only to give up. And when it comes to comics, my non-comic reading colleagues and friends tend to ask what a good jumping on point is or how many issues they need to read in order to understand a comic they plan to pick up. It's depressing.

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Michael Lee
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Posted: 20 October 2011 at 2:51am | IP Logged | 9  



 QUOTE:
Wow, so this is the episode that messed up JB's AFTERMATH series?

Just a demonstration of what can happen when a writer keeps a story "simmering" too long.

Now I'm trying to figure out how "Live Chess" would have factored into the Next Men's story!

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John Byrne
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Posted: 20 October 2011 at 5:26am | IP Logged | 10  

Wow, so this is the episode that messed up JB's AFTERMATH series?

++

Just a demonstration of what can happen when a writer keeps a story "simmering" too long.

==

Now I'm trying to figure out how "Live Chess" would have factored into the Next Men's story!

It didn't. In fact, there were many things in "The Wedding of River Song" that had no impact at all upon my story. Unfortunately, there were many things that did.

But I suspect you knew that.

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Josh Goldberg
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Posted: 20 October 2011 at 6:35pm | IP Logged | 11  

"I think TV shows in general need to lose this 'Seasonal Arc' fixation...it still should have been accessible to a new viewer."

****

I couldn't agree more, JB.  In my day (the Eighties), sure, we had "St. Elsewhere" and "Hill Street Blues", but overwhelmingly the television landscape was still largly populated with weekly stand-alone shows: "The A-Team", "Knight Rider", "Hardcastle & McCormick", I could go on and on listing shows...

And the shows that did have Arcs were still accessible to new viewers.  I promise you that the very fist time I watched the aformentioned "Hill Street Blues" or "St. Elsewhere" it was not the premier episode of either series, but I was hooked from my very first episode.

About a year or so ago, I purchased WISEGUY - THE COLLECTORS EDITION on DVD.  I was struck by what a well written show it was in terms of accessibility, even though its normal format was multi-part arcs.  Once could start watching the series with part 5 of the 5-part Jerry Lewis / Ron Silver garment industry arc and have no problem following the story.  They weren't even doing "previously on WISEGUY..." at that point in the series; they were just sneaking the exposition into the dialog (admittedly, sometimes more smoothly than others).

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John Byrne
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Posted: 20 October 2011 at 7:31pm | IP Logged | 12  

They weren't even doing "previously on WISEGUY...". . .

That little addition to the writer's manual was one of the worst mistakes TV has made in recent years. Like the old splash page top copy in Marvel books, it instantly becomes an excuse for not writing episodes/issues that are clear and accessible on their own.

I included a STORY SO FAR intro in NEXT MEN, because I knew I was writing a finite series, and structured it to be read as such, much like a novel. In the case of an "infinite" series, like SUPERMAN, or FANTASTIC FOUR, or DOCTOR WHO, every episode should bring the viewer up to speed internally, without a little "homework" at the beginning.

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Dennis Maloney
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Posted: 21 October 2011 at 8:08am | IP Logged | 13  

I think I may have mentioned this in another thread but when I watched a couple of episodes on BBC America they had put a little intro by Amy explaining who the Doctor is and what the TARDIS is before the title sequence, obviously in an attempt to bring viewers up to speed. I don't think it was entirely successful but it does illustrate what the BBC was thinking re:the accessibility of the show to new viewers. Or I could be reading too much into it.
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Josh Goldberg
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Posted: 21 October 2011 at 10:34am | IP Logged | 14  

Is that new intro not part of the actual show as it is originally broadcast in the UK?
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Dennis Maloney
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Posted: 21 October 2011 at 1:56pm | IP Logged | 15  

Is that new intro not part of the actual show as it is originally broadcast in the UK?

*****

I don't believe so. It's not on the DVD/Blu-rays and it's not on the episodes when I watch them on Amazon.



Edited by Dennis Maloney on 21 October 2011 at 1:57pm
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Didier Yvon Paul Fayolle
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Posted: 21 October 2011 at 10:25pm | IP Logged | 16  

One of the reason Moffat may want some times off could be if he is involved in the Tintin sequel, if the movie is successful enough.

So, maybe he is freeing himself...

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John Byrne
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Posted: 22 October 2011 at 5:35am | IP Logged | 17  

One of the reason Moffat may want some times off could be if he is involved in the Tintin sequel, if the movie is successful enough.

What a pity DOCTOR WHO seems to keep interfering with his real job...

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Rob Spalding
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Posted: 22 October 2011 at 7:49am | IP Logged | 18  

Moffat didn't do the final version of the Tintin film about to hit cinemas because he was taking the Doctor Who role.
I don't see him slacking from Doctor Who to go back to it.

The rumours of bust ups between crew and the two outgoing and gone producers probably didn't help.

Also, it looks very much like Moffat wants next series to be almost the complete 180 of this, in that there will be a very minimal arc over it all.  I think I saw something about next year being the Doctor just saving the day and solving problems weekly - going back to its roots.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 22 October 2011 at 8:46am | IP Logged | 19  

Yadda yadda yadda.

Moffat has seriously disappointed me each time he has adopted the role of show runner. SHERLOCK started very strong, and promptly tripped over its own feet with an incredibly lame second episode, and an only silghtly-less-lame third.

DOCTOR WHO started strong in its first Matt Smith season, then began stumbling every time the crack-in-the-wall had to be (inconsistently) shoe-horned in. The whole thing collapsed in the final episodes -- which turned out not to be "final" after all, as the "Silence" is suddenly back in the next season.

He says he wants to turn it all around next time, but I have serious doubts he can do it.

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Byron Graham
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Posted: 22 October 2011 at 6:30pm | IP Logged | 20  

It's a pity that the story arcs are the show's biggest weakness now, especially considering how great Matt Smith has been in the role.
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Brad Brickley
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Posted: 22 October 2011 at 9:47pm | IP Logged | 21  

The cast has been great, Byron. They're the best thing about the show now.
I think it'd be nice to return to a STAR TREK style of storytelling of just a bunch of single stories that still fit together nicely.

It's kind of the same in comics, of having all these epic stories all the time, it's gets a bit exhausting.
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