Doctor Who Degenerates into mumbling mediocrity
By Peter Warr Australia New South Wales Miranda 7 June, 2010
The latest actor to play Doctor Who (Matt Smith) has to be one of the worst. He is constantly rushing his lines. We the viewing and listening audience can not make out what he is saying at times. This is extremely annoying. The first rule of the theater is to speak your lines clearly. Realistic speech and speed is irrelevant, if the lines are not going to be heard distinctly by the television audience.
A great deal of money is now being invested into continuing the tradition of the Doctor Who program. However, never before has there been such appallingly incompetent delivery of the dialogue. The lines are important so as to tell the plot of the episode. If people can not hear the lines, portions of the plot, therefore, become unintelligible. Emotion, passion and drama in the delivery of the lines are simply interfering with the all important telling of the story. Even when Doctor Who was made on a much smaller budget, you could at least always be guaranteed clear delivery of the lines. What is wrong with the Director of these episodes? Why aren’t these scenes repeated until the actors clearly speak their lines?
Another irritating and mediocre characteristic creeping into the current Doctor Who episodes is in the scripts themselves. The show seems to be turning into a three person love triangle plot, instead of sticking primarily to a science fiction theme. We are constantly being reminded of the interest Amy Pond has in her current boyfriend and the Doctor. There is this ridiculous tension between settling for her boring life back on Earth with her boyfriend or going off with the exciting Doctor on adventures throughout time. The Doctor Who program was not created for the benefit of vacillating females to choose between one or the other prospective male characters. The program is primarily a science fiction series. So stick to the science fiction themes.
If your current writers can not come up with better plots, then reuse some of the great ones that were written over the decades of the program. They would benefit greatly from a high budget treatment. The current plots are not worthy of the high budget being lavished on them.
If you are content to just produce the Doctor Who program for a limited U.K. audience, then go ahead and continue in the same mediocre style you have been doing. But if you want to compete on the world’s television stage, then your actors will have to learn how to deliver all of their lines clearly. In the great days of science fiction television programs such as-`LOST IN SPACE`-( 1965 American television series) there was never a problem about the clear delivery of lines or accents. The Americans practiced a neutral accent and spoke English CLEARLY ! So why can’t the British at least speak English CLEARLY.
A great number of people never expected the Doctor Who program to come back onto television with totally brand new episodes, after thirty years of previous production. Back in the old days, the major handicap was the lack of money that the BBC was prepared to invest in it. Now, the money is not the problem. The overall look of the sets are very expensive and up with the latest high budget American television programs and films. The problem now is with the actors mumbling their lines. And further, with the unattractive choice of the Doctor’s female companions. Are there any beautiful females in Britain–apparently not. To further compound the problem, the scripts are being contaminated with sub-plot love triangles between the female travelling companion, the Doctor and the other male travelling companion. If your writers can’t get their heads out of a Coronation Street/Neighbours plot, then get writers who can write a proper science fiction episode.
Can the British, Welsh and Scots really understand every line the Doctor is speaking? Can they understand the monotone mumbles of Amy Pond? If you are just making the program for your local home grown, mumbling boofheads, then I suppose they can understand the mumbo jumbo. But if you want to sell this program to the wider English speaking world, you will have to correct the vast array of mistakes outlined in this critical analysis.