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> Doctor Who In Review: Series 3, he's like fire and ice and rage
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Doctor Who: Series 3
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JosephStyles
post Aug 20 2018, 09:13 PM
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Series 3


The revival of BBC's Doctor Who has now been ongoing for over 13 years, making it one of the biggest shows on TV all over again and taking it global too. I've been rewatching from series 1 again (god knows how many times I've done this now) alongside our very own HausofTove, who is watching all of these episodes for the very first time. So I thought, what better to do than a new series of threads in the run-up to Jodie Whittaker's debut as the Thirteenth Doctor?

Please post your opinions on series 3, and vote for your favourite episode in the poll above!

The Details

The Doctor is still reeling from the loss of Rose when he meets Martha Jones, a medical student at a hospital which was just transported to the moon. Together, they overcome galactic police the Judoon's forceful and illogical methods to defeat Florence, a Plasmavroe disguised as an old lady. Inviting her on one trip, Martha ends up becoming the Doctor's newest friend as he takes her to meet Shakespeare, although she takes issue when he takes her to New New York, where he also took Rose. They meet the Face of Boe once again as he passes away, warning the Doctor: "You Are Not Alone." After quizzing him on his background, Martha accompanies the Doctor to the real New York where they find the Daleks turning Hooverville residents into pig slaves as they prepare for the "Final Experiment" - a human/Dalek hybrid race to keep themselves alive. The Doctor then takes Martha home, much to her disappointment, but he finds it useful when she can use her sister Tish to attend Professor Lazarus' new invention - a machine that can de-age you, but of course this goes wrong. The Doctor finally invites Martha on board full-time, and they find themselves travelling to a spaceship on a collision course with a sentient sun. They run into the Family of Blood, who want the Doctor to extend their extremely short lifespans, and with their enhanced technology, they can track him anywhere. He takes drastic measures - turning himself human, relying on Martha to turn him back when necessary. As John Smith, a teacher in 1913 England who falls in love with Nurse Joan Redfern. Although Martha struggles with both the Doctor and John Smith not recognising her adoration of him, she convinces a stubborn John Smith to transform back, realising it was the only way to stop the Family when they invade their village. The Doctor and Martha then have to rely on Sally Sparrow, an inquisitive photographer who investigates Wester Drumlins, a haunted house infested with Weeping Angels. The deadly statues had sent the Doctor and Martha back in time, and they recorded videos as DVD extras to speak to Sally in the future. Reunited with an immortal Captain Jack, the trio meet Professor Yana, trying to send hopeless humans on a spaceship to Utopia to start a new life. The Doctor helps them out, but when Martha notices a fob watch identical to the Doctor's, it's revealed that Yana (You Are Not Alone, as per the Face of Boe's dying words) is the Master. He kidnaps the TARDIS and becomes Prime Minister Harold Saxon, who introduces the Toclafane to the Earth. Imprisoning Jack and ageing the Doctor, Martha is left to save the world alone. In a year away, she learns that the Toclafane are the hopeless humans who went to Utopia. When recaptured, Martha reveals her plan - she spread the word about the Doctor, restoring him to his usual self, before the Master's wife Lucy shoots him dead. After seeing her family tortured, Martha leaves the TARDIS, making a stand about being appreciated. The Doctor is then gobsmacked as the Titanic crashes into the TARDIS. When he investigates, he sees it's actually a spaceship replica, where Astrid Peth works - a waitress with big dreams.



Starring

David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor
Freema Agyeman as Martha Jones [episodes 1-13]
John Barrowman as Captain Jack Harkness [episodes 11-13]
Kylie Minogue as Astrid Peth [Xmas]

Guest Starring

Adjoa Andoh as Francine Jones [episodes 1, 6-7, 12-13]
Trevor Laird as Clive Jones [episodes 1, 12-13]
Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Tish Jones [episodes 1, 6, 12-13]
Reggie Yates as Leo Jones [episodes 1, 6, 12-13]
Derek Jacobi as Professor Yana / The Master [episode 11]
John Simm as Harold Saxon / The Master [episodes 11-13]
Bernard Cribbins as Wilfred Mott [Xmas]



Episodes

01: Smith & Jones | Written by Russell T. Davies
02: The Shakespeare Code | Written by Gareth Roberts
03: Gridlock | Written by Russell T. Davies
04: Daleks In Manhattan | Written by Helen Raynor
05: Evolution of the Daleks | Written by Helen Raynor
06: The Lazarus Experiment | Written by Stephen Greenhorn
07: 42 | Written by Chris Chibnall
08: Human Nature | Written by Paul Cornell
09: The Family of Blood | Written by Paul Cornell
10: Blink | Written by Steven Moffat
11: Utopia | Written by Russell T. Davies
12: The Sound of Drums | Written by Russell T. Davies
13: Last of the Time Lords | Written by Russell T. Davies

XX: Voyage of the Damned | Written by Russell T. Davies *

(it's debatable as to which series the Christmas episodes count for but I've generally seen each episode as belonging to the series that aired before!)



Aliens & Villains

Judoon [Smith & Jones]
Florence Finnegan / Plasmavore [Smith & Jones]
Slabs [Smith & Jones]

Carrionites [The Shakespeare Code]

Macra [Gridlock]
The Face of Boe [Gridlock]
Cat people [Gridlock]

Daleks [Daleks In Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks]
Pig Slaves [Daleks In Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks]
Dalek Hybrids [Daleks In Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks]

Professor Lazarus / The Lazarus Creature [The Lazarus Experiment]

The Torajii Star [42]
Korwin and other possessed crew members [42]

The Family of Blood [Human Nature / The Family of Blood]
Scarecrows [Human Nature / The Family of Blood]

Weeping Angels [Blink]

The Futurekind [Utopia]
The Master [Utopia / The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lord]
Toclafane [The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lord]

See Also

Feel free to contribute to past topics still! Click the links below.

Past and Present





Future








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Klaus
post Aug 20 2018, 09:25 PM
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the graphics using the era-specific font *.*
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JosephStyles
post Aug 20 2018, 09:25 PM
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Series 3 brings a lot of happy memories back to me. It was my first full series of Doctor Who to watch live, and my excitement levels were off the scale. I was apprehensive about Martha at first, because I'd enjoyed Rose so much, but I needn't have worried. Freema was superb throughout and while I could've done without the unrequited love plot, Martha was amazing. I loved how, in spite of the Doctor's ignorance of her feelings, she still saved the world and persevered through some horrible situations - the Doctor becoming John Smith, having to support them both by working in a shop in Blink, and travelling the world to stop the Master. Her exit was disappointing to me at the time as I'd grown to adore Martha, but looking back, it was extremely dignified and I couldn't have wished for a better exit. "This is me, getting out" heart.gif

Away from Martha, I really enjoyed Jack's return too even if it was pretty brief. Considering Torchwood series 1 had aired already it made sense to tie up some loose ends in the main show, and I wish we'd have seen more of the 10/Martha/Jack pairing! Astrid is wonderful in Voyage of the Damned too, I wish we'd have seen more of her.

My favourite episode of the series would have to be Blink. They obviously learnt from the errors of their first attempt at a Doctor-lite episode (Love & Monsters) and finally nailed the concept, with Steven Moffat delivering his best script (counting his future episodes too). Sally Sparrow was extremely likeable as a character and the Weeping Angels terrified me like no other Doctor Who alien did before, or has done since. I also adore the Human Nature two-parter. What a brilliant concept, executed with ambition and sincerity. Gridlock is the biggest grower New Who has given me, it was too dialogue-heavy for me to appreciate as a kid but I've grown to adore it over time.

At the other end of my rank, 42 is my least favourite but it's by no means BAD. It's grown on me over the years, in fact. It's just quite similar to The Impossible Planet for me and I don't think it pulls it off quite as well, but I do love the real-time concept and Martha's phone call to Francine is heartbreaking. Additionally, Daleks In Manhattan has gone down for me over the years. I actually enjoy it a lot and it has a lot of rewatchability for me, but the Dalek Sec Hybrid was ATROCIOUS in just about every way. A great idea, really poorly executed. That accent too mellow.gif

1. Blink
2. Human Nature / The Family of Blood
3. Gridlock
4. Utopia / The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lords
5. Smith and Jones
6. Voyage of the Damned
7. The Shakespeare Code
8. The Lazarus Experiment
9. Daleks In Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks
10. 42

I'd say a few of those are interchangeable. What a brilliant series though wub.gif wub.gif wub.gif
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JosephStyles
post Aug 20 2018, 09:27 PM
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QUOTE(Klaus @ Aug 20 2018, 10:25 PM) *
the graphics using the era-specific font *.*

blood, sweat and tears trying to find them

(I had the RTD era font on my computer from years ago though *.*)
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lewistgreen
post Aug 20 2018, 09:27 PM
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Says a lot about the series when Blink is the best episode there kink.gif I'd put the 3 part finale up there too, but the 'Doctor-lite' idea really worked well this season.
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HarryEzra
post Aug 20 2018, 09:27 PM
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My favourite ep of this season has to be the Human Nature/Family Of Blood two parter because it not only is a good doctor who story but it also tackles some good topics like what if the doctor was human and the issue of racism. An all round thrilling episode.

OH WAIT BLINK IS MY FAVE EP I FORGOT THIS WAS THE SERIES WITH IT IN OMG!!!! Blink is legit my fave ep of dr who sad.gif
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JosephStyles
post Aug 20 2018, 09:30 PM
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QUOTE(HarryEzra @ Aug 20 2018, 10:27 PM) *
My favourite ep of this season has to be the Human Nature/Family Of Blood two parter because it not only is a good doctor who story but it also tackles some good topics like what if the doctor was human and the issue of racism. An all round thrilling episode.

OH WAIT BLINK IS MY FAVE EP I FORGOT THIS WAS THE SERIES WITH IT IN OMG!!!! Blink is legit my fave ep of dr who :(

Vote changed xx
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Calum
post Aug 20 2018, 09:53 PM
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Those graphics Joseph *.*

I've just recently finished re-watching Series 3 on Netflix, and it was such a treat! For a long time, I'd written this series off as possibly my least favourite since the revival, and Martha as my least favourite companion, etc. This is probably mostly down to the fact that most episodes I hadn't watched since broadcast, and didn't really have the urge to revisit them, however my opinions have changed so much now, and I'm glad to be able to appreciate this series so much more.

The highlight of the series for me, by far and away, is Human Nature / The Family of Blood. Such a heartfelt story that addresses some very important themes. The Scarecrows are probably one of the most chilling monsters too, and that translated brilliantly on screen! I'd forgotten a lot of the finer details about Series 3 too, so when I realised that the fob watch became a pivotal part in the Master's return in Utopia too, I was loving it. The whole concept of the story is brilliant and it's jam-packed with emotional moments. The scene where the school assembles to fight the Scarecrows in the night really hits me whenever I watch.

Another episode that really surprised me when re-watching was 42. This, along with The Hungry Earth and Cold Blood, is probably Chibnall's finest contribution to the show. The whole episode is just so tense, the guest cast were fantastic and different in a sense (even if it does have some similarities to The Impossible Planet and The Satan Pit). This is the kind of episode that's building my excitement so much for Chibnall's era, because I think it showcases just a snippet of what he's capable of delivering.

The relationship between the Doctor and Martha in this series is so special. I do feel so sorry for Martha in the end, after all that she's done for the Doctor and how she always stood by him. Of the RTD-era companions, her family unit is probably one of the weakest in terms of likability, etc (Jackie/Mickey were fantastic and I grew to love Sylvia by the end of series 4 (probably helped a lot by the presence of Wilf and their chemistry together)). After all they had gone through in the finale, it definitely left me wanting to go and give Francine and Tish a big hug, but throughout the series there definitely could have been some more warming family moments with them, and more compassion with Martha (more-so from Francine). However, having said all that, I think Martha has definitely lost her title as 'least favourite companion' in my books, and is definitely up there with the best!

And obviously Voyage of the Damned got its casting spot on with Kylie heart.gif

1. Human Nature / The Family of Blood
2. Blink
3. 42
4. Utopia / The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lords
5. Voyage of the Damned
6. Gridlock
7. Smith and Jones
8. The Shakespeare Code
9. Daleks in Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks
10. The Lazarus Experiment

Looking at that ranking, it really is a very strong series with plenty variety in terms of setting, characters, stories, etc. wub.gif
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Botchia
post Aug 23 2018, 09:34 PM
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Blink was fantastic! It is kind of awkward how the best episode of the series didn't feature the Doctor much but never mind :')

Aside from that Human Nature / Family of Blood was a really really strong. But as a whole, I think the series suffered from Martha fawning over a lovesick Doctor really and (as Calum said) the poor and unlikeable family unit around her. As a character, I really liked Martha but she just felt a bit 'held back' by the writing.
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Mack.
post Aug 23 2018, 10:11 PM
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Favourite episode of that season would be 'Blink '.
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Chez Wombat
post Aug 23 2018, 11:11 PM
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OBVIOUSLY Blink is the best, an absolute masterclass in suspense and the Weeping Angels are the scariest villains Doctor Who has ever produced for me (Daleks are wayyy to overused to be scary and the concept of Cybermen is terrifying but they have never rlly been used to their full potential in Nu Who). It's odd that an episode held in such high regard doesn't feature the titular character, but at the same time it was the triumph of an experiment so it deserves it's place. The same way that Human Nature/Family of Blood is so good, because the Doctor is almost completely powerless for most of it as he is human, in Blink, he's almost entirely absent and in Utopia/Sound of Drums/Last of the Time Lords, he's completely met his match and powerless in his current state (even if the conclusion was dodgy as anything :')). So I think Season 3 did really good when it took away the Doctor's powers and let a real sense of dread take over.

So yes, I think the aforementioned three are certainly my top 3, as for the rest, I would probably say Gridlock (really good unique concept) > The Shakespeare Code (love a good historical Doc) > 42 > Smith and Jones > Voyage of the Damned > The Lazarus Experiment and >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Daleks in Manhattan/Evolution of the Daleks, absolutely horribly executed from the boring plot, terrible acting, terrible motives and pretty much the episode that started making me tire of the Daleks when at the time, I still couldn't get enough of them.

Martha was just largely underdeveloped, I guess not her fault being in between Rose and Donna but of all the companions, she's left the least impression on me and I struggle to remember any standout moments.
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Popchartfreak
post Aug 24 2018, 08:52 AM
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All the episodes are overshadowed by one masterpiece (no prizes for guessing), and it was the first series I bought on DVD. The collector in me is very bothered by the fact that I have all of the New Who DVD box sets and they look terrible on the shelf, one actual Tardis, a few of same design, and other ones that don't match anything. A mess of designs, the BBC do it on purpose to make you re-buy stuff! I refuse to give in! tongue.gif
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Klaus
post Aug 31 2018, 07:11 PM
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This is a series that definitely gets better as it goes along, the second half is MUCH stronger than the first.

I do feel sorry for Freema/Martha as she is definitely let down by being after Martha. It's kind of like the difficult second album, she'd been so popular with the audience and the Doctor that she just gets so undeservedly overshadowed even though there's elements there to a really strong character. She has to put up with being stuck in the past while the Doctor isn't even himself anymore and then has to walk around an Apocalyptic Earth, partially caused by her, for a year without anyone by her side whilst her family are being tortured! Speaking of her family, they themselves were really weak. I felt there is maybe too many of them and they perhaps didn't get enough screentime to solidify any connections - possibly harmed by the fact the two parter went to 1930s New York rather than the usual present day Earth. It might have worked better with just Francine and Tish. tbh it might have been nice to see Tish join for like 42 or something.

Blink is an absolute classic, such a brilliant concept for a monster and the video tape sequences are genius. Such a strong character in Sally Sparrow as well. (look at this series with its Academy Award nominated actors with Carey Mulligan, Gugu Mbatha Raw and Andrew Garfield!! support that young talent). The season long tease of Harold Saxon was something I (and basically everyone else) guessed very early that the Master would be returning but I LOVED the reveal in Utopia all the same! It led to an epic finale, although the end of Last of the Time Lords is still very jarring.

I didn't appreciate Human Nature as much as I should have done on first watch, I was perhaps a bit to young to appreciate it as I just wanted adventure and MONSTERS and the highlights of this is the human Doctor and the love story. David Tennant plays an absolute blinder and the human version becomes a really complex version and such an interesting character. Voyage of the Damned is such a perfect Christmas special, it wouldn't really work as part of a regular series but it's just a brilliant disaster movie - although odd seeing so many 'nice' characters die! It is let down by Max Capricorn I feel as he's really uninteresting/generic.

Gridlock is a nice bookend to the New Earth trilogy and I love the sequence when the Doctor goes down through all the cars. The biblical/religious elements completely went over my head though on first watch. The Lazarus Experiment is the usual FUN watch, nothing bad nothing amazing - just a fun romp. Daleks in Mahattan does get a loooooooooot of stick, some deservedly but I still do enjoy watching it even though it is completely bonkers! It kind of reminds me of a classic Doctor Who episode in parts where there's so many elements brought in, some just for show and some are there just because they though what if? I remember being terrified of the Human Dalek Sec when I saw it on the Radio Times cover but it was just funny to watch when seeing it in the episode. At least it makes the story memorable... I do love the setting though, although you can't go wrong with it!

42 is just a complete rip off from The Impossible Planet which just dampened by enjoyment of it. It just came too soon after that story with far less engaging characters, far less engaging monsters and a far less engaging final villain. Who wants an angry sun when you can have the DEVIL. The Shakespeare Code is just there for me, not a fan of Shakespeare in any event so it will never be my favourite celebrity historical - good sets though! Smith & Jones I'm not a big fan of - I just really find the Judoon so bland and there's so much fake tension in the episode. The Slabs are just nothingy and the villain is essentially a straw.

1. Blink
2. Utopia / The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lords
3. Human Nature / The Family of Blood
4. Voyage of the Damned
5. Gridlock
6. The Lazarus Experiment
7. Daleks in Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks
8. 42
9. The Shakespeare Code
10. Smith and Jones
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DalekTurret32
post Sep 18 2018, 10:19 PM
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Here's my ranking


[ [GOLD] ]:

1. Utopia/The Sound Of Drums/The Last Of The Timelords
2. 42
3. The Runaway Bride (In case anyone asks, I know that we covered this in the Series 2 thread, but it's listed by Wikipedia on the Series 3 article)


OUTSTANDING:
4. Gridlock
5. The Shakespeare Code
6. Smith And Jones
7. Human Nature/The Family Of Blood
8. Blink

BRILLIANT:
9. Daleks In Manhattan/Evolution Of The Daleks


GREAT:
10. The Lazarus Experiment



Overall, a very good series.


I'll reveal where Voyage Of The Damned will go in my Series 4 ranking, which may be revealed in a week or two.
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