Monday, September 15, 2008

timey timey right up behind me

Last night's Doctor Who was surely the Doctor Who to have the least Doctor in it. I didn't mind as I have come round to Donna Noble although last night's was more example of people telling her she was feisty than her actually being feisty (the post-sacking scene was feisty I guess). But I enjoyed it all. I always find it funny when the Doctor has to convey the sheer terror and awfulness of something about to happen (and that the new thing about to happen is signified by the words 'Bad Wolf' is particularly hilariously strange, wrong and, in fact, crap in a 'oh it's Doctor Who so we can't compete we haven't got the budget so we have to be crap and it's part of the charm' way.) This was very amusing with the previous Doctor and 'his first' encounter with the Daleks.

I'm not saying I could do any better - that would be stupid - I couldn't act it better or write it better. All I'm doing is enjoying it actually.

I see the next episode will feature heaps of relatively recent characters. Hope it's crap.

I wonder if the conception of time travel and space travel being aligned is related to E+MC2? When you think back to famous old time travel books like A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, Looking Backward and News from Nowhere, these are all firmly planted on earth and I don't even remember any kind of grand universal science humbug brought into service in explaining how these time travel episodes took place (were they all dreams?). It's not so surprising that late 19th/early 20th century books didn't combine space and time travel, but that doesn't explain why so often these days they are aligned in this way in science fiction/fantasy. Someone explain this to me please.

1 comment:

Mike said...

Relativity has something to do with it, but mostly it's because in TV sf, space travel is basically done with magic anyway - in Star Trek it's all "beam me up Scotty" and warp drives, not a rocket or spacesuit in sight.

So space and time travel, from a narrative point of view, sort of become identical: they're just a way of quickly shifting characters to Another World (a different set) where they can have an Adventure and then go home.

Also tv series have an army of fans obsessed with future histories and continuity. Time travel is a handy part of the writer's toolkit because the heroes of one series can jump back to visit those of another, etc.