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     Home »  The David Tennant Era »  S3-Ep 11 'Utopia'
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    S3-Ep 11 'Utopia' Views: 17574
     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 12:05 AM EDT
    Absolutely terrific!

    Great dialogue, some great acting and an amazing job by Graeme harper and Murray Gold to keep things so fast paced and so tense that my stomach was in knots through the whole episode.

    Mike

    "There are some corners of the universe which have bred the most terrible things. Things which act against everything we believe in. They must be fought."
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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 12:13 AM EDT
    In the Big Finish Audio Zagreus they talked about how Rassilon found the secret to regeneration and he noted that after 12 times, the gene/energy that allowed the regeneration would deteriorate the cells and not allow the regeneration to occur properly.

    Had to do with the memories not transferring correctly or causing bad side-effects.

    It's been a few weeks since listening to it, so i may be rusty on my memory.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 12:43 AM EDT
    Ok so the 'worst kept secret in the universe' was revealed tonight and all I can say is WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I figured they would somehow have to link Jacobi to Simm. Now we need to find out how he escaped the 'Eye of Harmony' and got his essence into the watch and into the Jacobi body since the TV movie did a pretty good job of blowing him to bits not once but twice.

    ...and did I mention WOW!!!!!!!!!

    Now here is the interesting...if the Doctor defeats the Master, and we all know Simm is only a guest star, would that not lead someone to believe that the Master will return in another form if the Doctor 'kills' him at the end of "Last of the Time Lords"? One would think that the powers that be would want to leave Moriarity...ehhh the Joker....errr....Dr. Loveless....I mean the Master (sorry was going for the whole main arch nemesis thing) some sort of escape clause.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 01:55 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  seanhuxter] Chan-Frikkin-TASTIC-tho!

    This was an incredible episode. I wasn't all that fond of the Mad Max bunch, but other than that, this had it all.

    The Doctor's hand coming back, his fear of jack, all the talk about Rose, and the watch. The watch!

    When the Face of Bo told the Doctor he wasn't the only Time Lord and in a Confidential, David Tenant said "Well, that's partly right." or whatever, I assumed he meant the Master, but because the Master had stolen non-Time-Lord bodies, that's why it was "half-right".

    But no, he pulled the same old trick the Doctor had already pulled.

    The funny thing was, though, when Martha said "It was the same watch." all I could think was... oh dear. The Professor... he's the Doctor! (Who was once called Professor by Ace.)

    My brain knew better, though, because we all knew about the Master coming back.

    Still, it would have made sense.

    Yes, in a season with so many early spoilers getting out there, there were still enough great surprises to keep me elated in this episode.

    For starters, the fact that it turned out to be the first of a three-parter was brilliant. It's been a long time since I had that shock of "Oh no...!" as a story unexpectedly ends on a cliffhanger. And bringing in Simms one episode early was also a lovely surprise.

    And like Sean, the production of the watch was a huge moment for me - possible the biggest moment of a season which has already had so many big "moments"! I also was torn between thinking this was the Master one episode early, or that it was some alternative future version of the Doctor himself! A future Doctor would have been brilliant, but the hidden Master was excellent too - and the echoing use of that unmistakeable evil chuckle was the perfect way to erase all doubt as to who Yana really was...

    I thought the episode itself was really enjoyable, even if the main plot turned out to be more of a maguffin. Actually I was kind of happy about that, because the "Futurekind" did seem very cheesy in the trailer (though not nearly as bad in context when watching the actual story). The meat of this episode was instead the character moments, between the Doctor and Jack (what an amazing conversation scene while Jack was fixing the couplings!), and of course the dawning of the Doctor's (and the Master's...) realisation that there is another Timelord in their midst.

    And let's not forget that with this episode, the new series' embrace of Classic Who became complete - first we had the Daleks, then the Cybermen, Sarah Jane, and then images of the Doctor's past selves - and now, not only the Master but... RUNNING AROUND IN QUARRIES! I'm a happy boy (but that'll probably quench my quarry thirst for a while, no need to go back any time soon...)

    Anyway, it's going to be torture waiting till next week. I can't wait. I do hope Simms doesn't play the Master too over-the-top, as I thought there were a few signs of him doing here... But I know we're in safe hands.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 02:46 AM EDT


    One thing I find facinating reading the responses is the fact that no one has yet to raise the point that was raised often in the 'Blink' thread-

    "But it's out of order!"

    Many had a problem with a single non-linear story, but here we have refrences to Mr. Saxon going back to the much debated "Love and Monsters" episode and none have ask why since Sir. Jacobi had yet to regenerate into Simm from the Doctor's efective timeline. Does seing the story develop through the Doctor's (and companion's) eyes make a diffrence in our perception of time flow? And I am sure we are all curious as to the placement in the Master's effective timeline this takes place as well.

    Saxon has been a force in the UK (Who's version) for a while and as we last heard from Martha's mum in 42 that it was Election Day. But I suppose even a burnt out Space Hopper of a time machine might not let the User(s) go back to a time they have already been through once (just an easy out mind you). Martha said she recognized the voice, I think the team (if allowed time) can put it together. But the barbarians are at the gate and the group probably can't sit down and do the math, so it's gonna be a quick fix push the button and pray (we hope).

    BTW Lucas I agree about the possibility of an OTT performance from Simm, the boardroom gassing scene rather reminded me of that Batman film where the villians dehydrated the global leaders (At least that's what went through my head).

    Cheers,
    Mike M.

    I'm a Time Traveler, I point and laugh at archaeologist.
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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 04:02 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  seanhuxter] Chan-Frikkin-TASTIC-tho!

    Nice episode! And the regeneration scene was awesome. So what happened, do you think? When the Master stole Tremas's body, did he retain the ability to regenerate? I had always assumed that to continue living he would have to steal another body, but apparently he somehow regained this Time Lord ability.


    Opening the watch turned him back into a regular Time Lord is my guess.
    This might also mean that The Doctors "regeneration clock" has been reset so there are no issues until Doctor number 22.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 04:22 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  merlin_mccarley]

    the boardroom gassing scene rather reminded me of that Batman film where the villians dehydrated the global leaders (At least that's what went through my head).


    Ha! Maybe this Master's hallmark will be leaving his victims as little piles of pink and yellow dust, rather than doll-corpses!

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 06:21 AM EDT
    My guess is somehow The Master escaped the eye of harmony. Also somehow managed to steal another body (with the last bit of the keepership). He then found his Tardis and he figured that until the time was right he would no longer be a timelord. As for the regenerarion, this has something to do with the Doctors hand I would think. Maybe a little bit of stolen timelord DNA from the Doctors pickled hand gave him another regeneration.

    The above is just a theory, so please don't shoot me down in flames for it Big Grin Hopefully RTD and co will explain it all in the next episode or 2.

    As for the episode. Fantastic. I really enjoyed this one, nice 3 parter.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 06:21 AM EDT

    Smashing indeed this was, but my goodness did they unleash the "hounds of nagging questions" with this episode.

    This certainly evoked classic Who throughout (which, we've all garnered to be a trend this season), from the other-worldly setting complete with a trusty old rock quarry, to the excellent makeups and lighting of the sets, as well as the sets themselves (stripped down in that old-school kinda way). Don't know why the lot of everyone keeps referring to the "gru-mans" (gruesome-humans - that's my affectionate nickname for the lot of 'em, anyway) as Mad Max knock-offs - they clearly seem much more derived from John Carpenter's "Ghosts of Mars" - but anyway...

    Loved Jacobi in this, before and most certainly AFTER the reveal - and my hunch about the Master came to pass with flying colors. I had my suspicions about the Chameleon Arch playing a bigger role in this season than initially suggested - bingo on that one. The real question is - was it intentionally done by the Master himself (ala the Doctor in "Human Nature/Family of Blood"), or was this a form of punishment that should have ended with the death of a gentile old soul that would never truly realize what/who he actually was?

    My bets are on the latter choice - after all, why did the Doctor say "I'm sorry" - I think he knew what he'd done, or had the Gallifreyan council do, long before the Time War occured, perhaps after McGann's Doctor (in speculative theory, that is) had him extracted from the Eye of Harmony within the TARDIS, to stand trial for all his limitless crimes and misdeeds (as was the intention before the Master's "essence" seeped out and caused the TARDIS to crash land, bringing about McCoy's regeneration, etc., etc.). I think the Master was banished into a normal human existence, one that would slightly redeem him as a kinder, wiser soul - never aware of the monster he once was - doomed to die off without ever tapping back into that checkered past.

    But again - the question is - did the Time Lords do this, the Master himself (perhaps to escape detection FROM the Time War), or was this a "pre-Eccleston darkness" act of vengeful enslavement on the behalf of McGann's Doctor to be rid of the Master for what was intended to be once and for all?

    Gosh. The possibilities, folks...

    And as many have already astutely pointed out - how was he able to technically regenerate once again? McCoy's Doctor had his oozy essence trapped in a box - that slimey mess found a perfect human counterpart to inhabit in the guise of Eric Roberts, but was NOT a traditional "regeneration," by and large. Man - my head is still spinning from all the thinking on this...

    But seriously - I almost wish Jacobi had remained the Master. Not so sure about Simm after his goofball antics once he was up and running. Agreed by the above comments that Mr. Simm might be heading towards making a slight mockery of a classic villain if he steers his Master too much towards the slapstick and less towards the unsettling, unpredictable wickedness that made the character so great in the heyday. We'll just have to see. I'm hoping all the giddy glee was just post-regenerative silly syndrome ala David Tennant in the "Children in Need" bit nearly two years ago.

    Unfortunately, next week's preview didn't really leave me with much hope. He just seems too comically infused as the Master - I'm sensing none of the dry charm of Delgado's Master, nor the insidiously splendid brilliance of Ainley's run. Granted, I know - it was all of five minutes to go on, ok - I'll grant you that much. But first impressions account for a hell of a lot in many cases - and thus far, Simm's Master seems already akin to Eric Roberts - he's WAY too over the top. But I'll reserve final judgement until the season is over. Fair enough?

    Seriously - Jacobi HAD me in that moment of the reveal - and the dry undercurrent of some of that dialogue beforehand - "No rest for the wicked" - GAH! LOL...

    As for the other major WTF moment in the story - what's up with the beginning? I watched "End of Days" again this afternoon (in anticipation of Jack's return), and how did they mess this up? It seemed to be alluded that the TARDIS actually materialized in the Torchwood Hub, with either Jack jumping inside or clinging on (which seemed likely, from the previews) - but all of a sudden we're outside on top of the rift with Jack running towards it before it departs - ummm, ok? I mean c'mon, Owen even made a comment about the Hub being a shambles again after they cleaned up, as if papers and other easily affected items were disturbed by the temporal shift of the TARDIS arriving/departing - so again, ? Maybe it was just Jack messing things up as he scrambled to throw the "Christmas Hand" in a duffle bag as he tore off - still, doesn't explain how the returning team members never saw him leave. Yeah, I know, I know - secret back door for Jack.. wait... that came off WAY wrong... lol

    Anyway, enjoyed tonight's (despite the rant - seriously) but I am certainly curious about how many points will either be explained away or altogether dodged - it's gonna be an interesting two weeks. As for how the Doctor and Co. get back, well - seems (as had been mentioned) that Jack is the key there - it certainly wasn't brought up for nothing.

    And all this time I was sure somehow that Bilis Manger was indeed the Master in another timeline - dammit, RTD... Mr. Green

    Human Biological Metacrisis = Bite Me, RTD.
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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 07:25 AM EDT
    Another excellent episode. After a bit of a sluggish start to the season things have picked up in a big way. Good performances throught, I only wish that Derek Jacobi could have played the Master for at least one more episode so that his regeneration would have had more of an impact as opposed to almost immediatly after the big reveal. I also hope they don`t ignore the events of the TV Movie and give us no explaination of how he survived the Eye of Harmoney thing. 4.5 out of 5 from me.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 06:38 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  DrWho001] As for the regenerarion, this has something to do with the Doctors hand I would think. Maybe a little bit of stolen timelord DNA from the Doctors pickled hand gave him another regeneration.



    Hmmm... you know, you might actually have something there! Would certainly be ironic if it were the case - after all, that puts the Doctor and Jack at potential odds, since Jack brought the darn thing with him. That will make the Doctor all the more frustrated that he tagged along - not only having the TARDIS rocket to the end of the universe in attempts to shake him off, but then helping his ancient arch-enemy to regenerate, where he might've only died from a mortally fatal wound in his present condition... I like it, sir. We'll see! Big Grin

    Human Biological Metacrisis = Bite Me, RTD.
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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 07:56 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  Will-I-Am] But seriously - I almost wish Jacobi had remained the Master. Not so sure about Simm after his goofball antics once he was up and running. Agreed by the above comments that Mr. Simm might be heading towards making a slight mockery of a classic villain if he steers his Master too much towards the slapstick and less towards the unsettling, unpredictable wickedness that made the character so great in the heyday. We'll just have to see. I'm hoping all the giddy glee was just post-regenerative silly syndrome ala David Tennant in the "Children in Need" bit nearly two years ago.

    Unfortunately, next week's preview didn't really leave me with much hope. He just seems too comically infused as the Master - I'm sensing none of the dry charm of Delgado's Master, nor the insidiously splendid brilliance of Ainley's run. Granted, I know - it was all of five minutes to go on, ok - I'll grant you that much. But first impressions account for a hell of a lot in many cases - and thus far, Simm's Master seems already akin to Eric Roberts - he's WAY too over the top. But I'll reserve final judgement until the season is over. Fair enough?



    Never quoted and followed up on myself before - first time for everything, I guess! Ooh... hope it doesn't interfere with the timeline of things... well, drat on that notion. Razz

    Anyway, just finished watching the accompanying Confidential for this episode and indeed - RTD touches on how loopy and far out the Time Lords can get after a regeneration, so again - I'm letting those final moments of giddy glee ride on this cemented "confirmation equal parts explanation." I really want to love Simm, even if he is sans a gotee out of the gate - lol.

    As always, the faith is ready and willing. Now, show me the Master! Twisted Evil

    Human Biological Metacrisis = Bite Me, RTD.
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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 08:12 AM EDT
    As many have said, "Wow!" Slowly I realized that the "main story" was fading and instead we were in for a surprise.

    It was great to see Captain Jack back as well as the interaction between him and the Doctor. And deservedly, it was cool to see an extra name in the opening titles.

    As was the case last year, I'll be on vacation for the series finale so I'll have to get my fill next week. Sadly, where I'm going doesn't have any "flight service" to England!

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 08:14 AM EDT
    Here's something no one has yet considered...

    What if the Jack in this episode hasn't yet encountered Torchwood?

    He has the hand from the Christmas Invasion so he has a means of detecting the Doctor (something he was already in possession of at the beginning of the TW series), and he knows that the rift in Cardiff is a likely spot to wait around by (following Boom Town). May be what we have here is a pre-Torchwood and post-Parting of the Ways Jack who has lived out a long life waiting for the Doctor to return.

    I bet that by the end of this series Jack will be dropped off back in Cardiff ready to set up his Torchwood Hub (and perhaps a little moodier and darker following his recent adventures with the Doctor). That's why he seems like his old self here ... the fascinating thing is who's TARDIS does he then disappear into in the future events of Torchwood?! – a future Doctor, a past Doctor, the Master, another time traveller he has recently encountered? I can't wait to find out!!!

    Overall, I thought this episode was a lot like Gridlock - a daft story designed for a whopping great big payoff at the end. I enjoyed the last ten minutes tremendously, but this great ending could have had a better set up. Loved Derek Jacobi - I wish he could have stuck around for longer and made his transformation (and death of the professor) even more poignant. Please John Simms don't be a wacky Master and give us a genuinely threatening villain. Pretty Please…

    Great stuff! Good luck with the Live Show later today everyone.

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     Sunday, June 17 2007 @ 08:33 AM EDT
    Oh, and I have taken into account the fact that Jack knew about the Battle of Canary Wharf - but given that this is a timetravelling show I still think that Jack could have experienced the battle and then had this adventure in the narrow space of time just prior to the events in Torchwood - esp. since we don't know how long the Hub was established before Gwen joined it.

    Also the thinking behind the BBC may be that the up and coming events in Series 3 might give TW a new lease of life now that it fits into the non-linear events of Doctor Who.

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