So hello everyone again,I will be spicing up that film blog with my thoughts on television shows (Mostly British).
Today I would be focusing on a particular TV movie-Adventure in Space and Time in my discussion.
As a non-Whovian who runs a tumblr blog, I am extremely aware of the Doctor Who fandom and its prescene in British television. I have a friend who loved Doctor Who (her favorite is David Tennant I.E the 10). Doctor Who is like synomous with everything British alongside tea,Shakespeare and James Bond. It happens that they celebrated its 50th anniversary last weekend,yes my country do have that live-screening of “The Day of The Doctor” at 3.30 A.M in the morning! Few of my fandoms can be linked to Doctor Who Sylvester McCoy (The 7th Doctor) is in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit as Radagast (Jackson is a big Doctor Who fan),Christopher Eccleston recently appeared in Thor 2 as the evil elf Malkeith (It’s a pity that it did not mentioned him). The writers of Sherlock,Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat wrote episodes of Doctor Who. I just cannot escape its influence for Sci-Fi genre.
Now back to the topic An Adventure in Space and Time which is written by Gatiss,on the origins of Doctor Who in the sixties. It was the craziest decade in pop culture,you have The Beatles and Rolling Stones,the Bond Franchise is up and you have the counterculture rising. At this time Doctor Who was telecasted,it concede with the assassination of JFK. I mean it was a turbulent year of values. Not only that fact Doctor Who is shown on that assassination but the creators of it.
It was conceived by a Canadian who desired to teach children history. Ok a white male- Sydney Newman…But what strikes me is the power duo that pushed Doctor Who for what it’s. A Jewish Female Vertie Lambret,given an impossible task of pitching a madcap show of doctors,aliens and cavemen to veteran male producers. An Indian junior director- Warris Hussim have to directed an experienced William Hartnell and deal with the technical problems of that era. What? a female producer and a person of color directing something crazy ? I am so mind-blown. As the T.V film progressed,they did the impossible,Vertie convincing Sydeny (The creator of Doctor Who) to give Daleks as a model of tolerance. Making each child interested in the fun effects while learning something. Giving hope to British society in times of darkness despite Hartnell battle his personal demons and the aftermath of JFK’s death. I admit I nearly shed a tear on the meeting between soon-to-be-gone Matt Smith (2nd youngest doctor to date) and William
There I have an ephinany halfway in the film…O.K looking at today’s Doctor Who crew…most are white and male. Even the actors are male (even though I am looking forward to Peter Capaldi to get me started into Doctor Who). The POC characters are mostly sidekicks,the females…I say they are one-dimensional in Moffat’s writing.
I did watch the 2nd half of Moffat’s “Day of the Doctor”, I do like John Hurt as The War Doctor (he is so fun). I do like the hopeful ending,I do like the “Ride of The Valkyries” invasion to freeze Gallfiery with Capaldi’s badass moment.I am aware of Eccleston’s refusal to come to 50th.It feels missing without Nine (My sister was upset when we did not see enough Eccleston) I find Clara rather boring (I do not care as I am fangirling over Tennant)
However reading at the comments of what others say, plus tweaking Queen Liz I does not do good for the History buff Whovians. However I do not enjoy it as much as this TV movie and the five(ish) doctors reboot (a hilarious shortie written by Peter Davison with PJ and Ian McKellen goofing around). These two specials got me closer to the spirit of Doctor Who than Moffat’s special. I am somewhat convinced that Doctor Who is special.
I think what I feel we need to change after I watched Adventure of Time and Space is perhaps how we put female and POC perspectives in Doctor Who (or basically any television show of your choice). Let’s use Doctor Who as an example.
- Female writers,look at fan fiction. Most of the writers are female (I know one who wrote fanfics). Why can’t you used the female psyche to nuture the characters in television instead of shallow stereotypes.
- Now about female characters,I have a thing for strong female characters since secondary school. It’ss difficult to find girls I could admire. They are often terribly written….Perhaps let’s look at another television series Avatar The Last Airbender and Korra. The females are more than Damsels in Distress. They are the go-changers and if not equal to their male counterparts…Look at Toph that 12 year old is one BAMF,she does not her disability get in her way and in addition all the guys liked her. Moving on to Korra,and there is Jinora (My flawless queen) She is a 10 year old,pretty smart and very strong in her spiritual side (even outshining her dad). Despite her trapping by Unalaq,she let Korra to find the light and saved the world. Female characters should not be simple as black and white,but varied. Moffat if you are hearing me take ALTA and LOK to make BAMF female characters.
- Person of Colour perspective,I heard that they do want a POC as the Doctor. I do not mind at all,as there are so many POC actors that could played that well-loved character. It would diversify the perceptions of colored persons! I mean the POC kids would be screaming in joy at the hallways,”I am the Doctor”. They found someone to look upon. Of course they could make their POC companions more significant than just be pushed to the sideline
- About directors,editors and the crew of Doctor Who….How about a POC female director? A POC writer? I could name so many…Open your eyes and go beyond that generic “white and male” box. I think Doctor Who would be further enriched with plot lines that are so different in perspectives.
I could list so many stuff and mind you I did not touch the LGBTQ aspect yet. Do television do progress from its conception of Vertie Lambret and Warris Husseum pushing Doctor Who in the sixties despite its racial prejudice and gender inequality? A little…..we do seen POC characters on TV and film Steven Yuen in The Walking Dead,George Takei in Star Trek,Idris Elba in Pacific Rim and Thor (A POC playing a Norse God,that is awesome). Female characters,I can name Miyasaki’s females like San from Monokeke Hime and Sophie Hatter from Howl’s Moving Castle…. But it’s not enough,the crew must be diverse in perspectives…We need more female Television and film roles beyond costume designer and makeup artist.
In the end,this special actually provoked me to thinking about that..We need to do something to change how we wire TV and film industry. I would like to end with the quote that Hartnell mentioned in the special
“Until then, there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine.”
I do believe that one day we would have main POC characters and strong females which I needed for my television series (and film)