Monday, March 25, 2013

The Fourth Doctor

I just watched Tom Baker's final episode as the Doctor last night. I know...I'm a little behind the times. I was slow to this bit of geekery though.

I was a little let down by it. Four's regeneration into Five seemed  a little anti-climatic for the man who was the Doctor longer than anyone else. Even the Master was pretty weak this time around. The Master wants to destroy Logopolis, a planet where the inhabitants use mathematics to create solid objects. To throw off the coding they create, the Master turns the residents into dolls. I guess I wasn't impressed with Anthony Ainley as the Master. I liked Roger Delgado best, at least so far.

"Logopolis" is the seventh and final serial of the 18th season in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from 28 February to 21 March 1981. It was Tom Baker's last story as the Doctor and marks the first appearance of Peter Davison in the role. This serial also marks the first appearance of Janet Fielding as new companion Tegan Jovanka, whilst Nyssa played by Sarah Sutton and seen in previous serial "The Keeper of Traken," returns and also joins the Doctor as a companion."

Here's a quick explanation of the plot: The Doctor and Adric stop in London in the 1980's to measure a true police box to get measurements to take back to Logopolis to fix the chameleon circuit. Nyssa from the previous ep shows up. Tegan from Australia (a future stewardess) comes along, unwittingly, as new companion. The Master and a strange man all in white are there too.

I did have to try and look up why Tom Baker left that role. This is what I found: "Tom Baker didn't stay too long. That's just an easy piece of received wisdom. His final season suffered because the people in charge of the show didn't want him and were unprofessional enough to work against him rather than with him. Baker was also ill during that season, so you could maybe argue that he stayed too long for his own health." I actually thought he looked sick in Meglos, episode 110, which aired in September and October, 1980.

Wouldn't you be able to recognize this man anywhere??
You would if you were a true Whovian.
But here you have it from the Doctor's own mouth. "I was never really happy until I became Doctor Who. At the same time, although it’s the loveliest job I ever had, it essentially killed my career stone dead because I suddenly realised I liked playing Doctor Who more than anything that had ever happened to me before. So when I went to play Macbeth, the audience wanted me to play Macbeth in the style of Doctor Who and naturally I did. Afterwards a critic said ‘I had no idea how nice Macbeth was’. So I realised then that the people coming to see me – people like you – didn’t want to see me playing Jack the Ripper of whatever it was.”

Oh wow, just read this interview he did in 2009. How awesome would it be to have that kind of access to him and you can just TALK like that? He was the Doctor but he's still just a regular guy.

I've actually had a couple dreams where I'm one of the Doctor's companions. And he's my Doctor. I've seen the inside of the TARDIS. I've seen it fly and spin through the air.

Hell, I've also had dreams in which I'm Spider-Woman, but that's neither here nor there.

I think Tom Baker had a hell of an impact on me, more than I realized, if I'm dreaming about being one of his companions, as opposed to William Hartnell's. The dreams themselves are amazing...wonderful bits of adventure through time and space...being able to touch the TARDIS...seeing it land in my front yard and not being concerned there's an old British police box there, killing the grass...feeling a sense of adventure and wonderment. Dream or television, that's just good entertainment.

While I've cussed out my friend Nicole the Knitter for starting this addiction for me (lovingly, of course), I do adore it.

Bring on Peter Davison and let's see how Five compares to the rest of the bunch! :)