Interesting words, part 3

A continuing series.

(TV) used to be the sort of thing that you watched casually week to week; you weren't supposed to get deeply invested in the emotional lives of the characters, and the shows were designed to keep that involvement to a bare minimum. You were drawn by the actors' charisma or good looks, but you weren't supposed to worry about their inner lives, which were mostly nonexistent. It was the fans who read deeper meanings into the shows, and through fan fiction and essays they provided the emotional resonances that the TV shows were not intended to evoke. Doctor Who is a great example of a show that went full circle through the cycle of fandom; many of the writers and showrunners, as well as the actors, were great fans of the program when they were kids, and many of them worked on semi-official tie-in novels or radio plays while it was in hibernation. By reviving the program, they effectively recreated it in their fannish image; the characters are now capable of expressing the thoughts and emotions that could only be inferred in the original version.

From “Doctor Who: Old Vs. New,” by “Lightninglouie,” at io9’s “Observation Deck”.

The just-aired Christmas special, by the way, was merely okay – some very good elements, and lots of flaws, some in the episode itself and others planted by failures earlier in the series.

But the Doctor Who 50th anniversary special last month was among the show’s best episodes.