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Doctor Who: Too Much Sci-Fi?


View Poll Results: Is Doctor Who becoming too sci-fi for general viewers?
Yes, its got too much sci-fi by far 5 4.67%
Yes, but only by a little 8 7.48%
I think it is fine as it is 39 36.45%
No, in fact a little more sci-fi would be good 37 34.58%
No, in fact A LOT more sci-fi is needed 18 16.82%
Voters: 107. You can't vote on this poll right now - are you signed in?

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Old 03-05-2013, 10:36
Mulett
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One of the things I loved about Doctor Who when it was brought back was that it was heavily rooted in a real-world environment, with every-day people becoming companions and many threats being faced right here on earth.

I know some of the complaints about Who since Steven Moffat took over were about the complexity of the stories (which I don't agree with). But I feel the problem with the show is that it has disconnected too much from the real world and is moving towards something that is very sci-fi.

My concern, over all, is that it could alienate the more general viewers.

So, here's a poll. Please note, though, that its not about your personal taste but whether you think Doctor Who is at risk of becoming too sci-fi for general viewers (as opposed to sci-fi/Who fans).
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:39
SilenceWillFall
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No, there's too little of it.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:40
Mulett
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No, there's too little of it.
That is one of the options in the poll!
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:41
Verence
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Perhaps a little bit more sci-fi

I prefer off-Earth stories
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:44
JohnnyForget
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One of the things I loved about Doctor Who when it was brought back was that it was heavily rooted in a real-world environment, with every-day people becoming companions and many threats being faced right here on earth.
That's one of the things I hated about it when it returned.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:47
Mulett
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Remember guys - its not about what you like/enjoy, its about keeping more general viewers engaged with the show.

So don't vote on what you like, but whether or not you think the sci-fi elements are becoming too pronounced for more general viewers,
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:50
pajs1000
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Dr. Who IS a Sci- Fi show.
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Old 03-05-2013, 10:56
SilenceWillFall
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Remember guys - its not about what you like/enjoy, its about keeping more general viewers engaged with the show.

So don't vote on what you like, but whether or not you think the sci-fi elements are becoming too pronounced for more general viewers,
None of us can really express the opinion of the general viewer, can we?

But when you look for example at the ratings/AIs even without bringing the whole RTD vs Moffat stuff into it, just looking at RTDs era for example. the most popular in this aspect for general public were series 4 and the 09 Specials which IMO had more sci-fi and less of the real world environment when compared to RTDs earlier series.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:01
Mulett
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None of us can really express the opinion of the general viewer, can we?

But when you look for example at the ratings/AIs even without bringing the whole RTD vs Moffat stuff into it, just looking at RTDs era for example. the most popular in this aspect for general public were series 4 and the 09 Specials which IMO had more sci-fi and less of the real world environment when compared to RTDs earlier series.
The issue I have is that a lot of the mates and work colleagues I have who enjoyed Who when it first came back are being very negative about it now. These are people that didn't really watch Classic Who and certainly don't watch any other sci-fi/fantasy shows.

And it does seem to be an impression, from them, that the sci-fi elements are becoming heavier.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:08
SilenceWillFall
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The issue I have is that a lot of the mates and work colleagues I have who enjoyed Who when it first came back are being very negative about it now. These are people that didn't really watch Classic Who and certainly don't watch any other sci-fi/fantasy shows.

And it does seem to be an impression, from them, that the sci-fi elements are becoming heavier.
The issue is that your mates/colleagues are a very small and most probably not very representative group of people and it makes little to no sense to base assumptions about the general viewers based on their opinions. Especially when everything else suggest that the general viewers are still watching and ejoying Who (look at ratings/AIs). True, those might not be the same general viewers that watched it in 2005, but numbers are very similar/pretty much the same as back in the beginning, which is the thing that matters.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:11
Muttley76
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I think on the whole they get the balance about right.
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:22
platelet
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Why no option for "Needs more ghosts"?
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:33
Eighth Doctor
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Why no option for "Needs more ghosts"?
We didn't even get a ghost in the haunted house episode. More ghosts!!!
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Old 03-05-2013, 11:57
Mulett
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The issue is that your mates/colleagues are a very small and most probably not very representative group of people and it makes little to no sense to base assumptions about the general viewers based on their opinions. Especially when everything else suggest that the general viewers are still watching and ejoying Who (look at ratings/AIs). True, those might not be the same general viewers that watched it in 2005, but numbers are very similar/pretty much the same as back in the beginning, which is the thing that matters.
Its a starting point for a conversation, SWF. In the 80s, the show lost millions of viewers and one of the reasons that happened is that it became too insular. My concern is that the show is at risk of doing that again and it simply can't survive on Who fans alone.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:03
Shevk
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None of us can really express the opinion of the general viewer, can we?

But when you look for example at the ratings/AIs even without bringing the whole RTD vs Moffat stuff into it, just looking at RTDs era for example. the most popular in this aspect for general public were series 4 and the 09 Specials which IMO had more sci-fi and less of the real world environment when compared to RTDs earlier series.
The Wilf stuff was very poignant and well characterised and domestic. (Particuarly in Sontarans and Turn Left). The other thing is, every story in S4 still reflected back on humanity (Human toll of Pompeii, Human Slavery of the Ood etc).

A lot of recent episodes (IMO) don't have the same level of commentary on the human experience, which IMO, makes it harder for an ordinary human to engage.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:16
CAMERA OBSCURA
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Ive never been of the opinion that the 'Classics' were top heavy on sci-fi anyway, no more than Nu Who.

You have your basic premise, which will be the sci-fi and your story in between (a broad brushstrokes analogy I know but Id be here all day with the ins and outs)

I think it is about right sci-fi wise.


Shevk
A lot of recent episodes (IMO) don't have the same level of commentary on the human experience, which IMO, makes it harder for an ordinary human to engage.
An interesting point Shevk and one I was thinking about the other day whist watching this clip on youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=--S8yIAhDB8

A theme that RTD continued through his era.

The classics and the RTD era did seem to have far more social commentary than the Moffat era. (not a complaint but a personal observation)
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:19
smudges dad
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Dr. Who IS a Sci- Fi show.
I get the feeling that some people think it is a real life documentary, not a general entertainment family TV programme.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:25
alfster
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One of the things I loved about Doctor Who when it was brought back was that it was heavily rooted in a real-world environment, with every-day people becoming companions and many threats being faced right here on earth.
.
If you want that sort of thing just watch Eastenders...and every day people have pretty much always been companions...why the hell would we want a prgramme based around a machine that can travel through time and space piloted by a being that can regenerate into 'someone else' to be rooted in a real-world environment...the whole point of Dr Who is about escapism.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:27
alfster
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A lot of recent episodes (IMO) don't have the same level of commentary on the human experience, which IMO, makes it harder for an ordinary human to engage.
As opposed to what sort of human? a human who can actually 'get' science fiction?

It's amazing how many people just don't get science fiction and can only cope with stuff they already can understand and correlate.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:29
alfster
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Its a starting point for a conversation, SWF. In the 80s, the show lost millions of viewers and one of the reasons that happened is that it became too insular. My concern is that the show is at risk of doing that again and it simply can't survive on Who fans alone.
No one of the main reasons was reduced budgets and someone stabbing the show in the back by putting it on in the week up against Coronation Street.

It almost seems like some people haven't seen the huge amount of successful sci-fi shows coming out of the US and how popular they are - sci-fi is popular...what tends to kill it is reduced budgets and TV companies screwing around with formats etc.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:44
gingerfreak
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Sorry Mulett, I clicked on 'needs more sci-fi' before I read your post. I suppose for the 'normal' viewer it's about right, or in fact needs to be a bit less sci-fi-ey. Or at least rooted a bit more in modern Britain.
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Old 03-05-2013, 12:48
Mulett
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If you want that sort of thing just watch Eastenders...and every day people have pretty much always been companions...why the hell would we want a prgramme based around a machine that can travel through time and space piloted by a being that can regenerate into 'someone else' to be rooted in a real-world environment...the whole point of Dr Who is about escapism.
I wouldn't class either Amy or Clara as 'every day companions' and that's part of the problem.

Science fiction and fantasy shows only grab a wider audience if they appeal beyond the fantastic.

Buffy, for example, had a massive teenage girl following, which is very unusual for a fantasy TV show. Why? Because amid all the vampire fighting, Buffy had homework, proms, boyfriend trouble, household chores and arguments with her mum.

The point is, if the shows pleases us fans too much, it will alienate everyone else.
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Old 03-05-2013, 13:05
alfster
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Buffy, for example, had a massive teenage girl following, which is very unusual for a fantasy TV show. Why? Because amid all the vampire fighting, Buffy had homework, proms, boyfriend trouble, household chores and arguments with her mum.
.
Buffy had a massive general following because it was superb story-telling, characterisation and had a few fit girls kicking ass. They also had far more episodes, were based in one place and therefore could build on all of that...Dr Who by its very nature does not have that 'base' and it shouldn't have...

Also, Buffy's boyfriend problems were a) with a vampire with a soul and b) a super-soldier...hardly something a teen girl can relate to...unless they dated me at some point.
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Old 03-05-2013, 13:08
SilenceWillFall
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Buffy had a massive general following because it was superb story-telling, characterisation and had a few fit girls kicking ass. They also had far more episodes, were based in one place and therefore could build on all of that...Dr Who by its very nature does not have that 'base' and it shouldn't have...

Also, Buffy's boyfriend problems were a) with a vampire with a soul and b) a super-soldier...hardly something a teen girl can relate to...unless they dated me at some point.
Also, at least where I come from it's hardly unusual for fantasy stuff to have teenage girl following.
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Old 03-05-2013, 13:09
alfster
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The issue I have is that a lot of the mates and work colleagues I have who enjoyed Who when it first came back are being very negative about it now. These are people that didn't really watch Classic Who and certainly don't watch any other sci-fi/fantasy shows.

And it does seem to be an impression, from them, that the sci-fi elements are becoming heavier.
Dr Who was fine for 30years with sci-fi heavy elements...that was the point of it...this sci-fi element, as has been mentioned,. did not kill the series off...that was real life human intervention...the show is simply moving back to where it was before it got killed off...being a sci-fi show with monsters to scare kids withand sexy assistants for the dads...and Drs who the mums like...
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