Why Don’t You Break the Cycle? – “The Zygon Invasion”/”The Zygon Inversion”

zygon inversionI would never presume to claim that Doctor Who can offer an adequate response to the horrors unfolding in Paris and Beirut, because nothing can offer an adequate response. But isn’t that why we create art and tell stories? To try to come to some sort of grips with the world around us.

The episodes themselves were really good. The scripts are a smart, logical extension of “The Day of the Doctor.” The Zygons are used in a scary and effective way. Jenna Coleman gets to flex her muscles, portraying Clara’s cleverness and cool-under-pressure as well as Bonnie’s icy villainy and subsequent repentance. I’m not sure that I’m as crazy about Ingrid Oliver as everyone else is, but I thought they made really interesting and ambiguous use of Osgood.

But, look. All I really care about today is the Doctor’s speech–his appeal to think and talk–brilliantly and passionately delivered by Peter Capaldi. With all credit to Harness, Moffat, the BBC, and the incomparable chakoteya.net transcript site, I’d really rather just let the Doctor talk:

DOCTOR: Ah. Ah, right. And when this war is over, when you have a homeland free from humans, what do you think it’s going to be like? Do you know? Have you thought about it? Have you given it any consideration? Because you’re very close to getting what you want. What’s it going to be like? Paint me a picture. Are you going to live in houses? Do you want people to go to work? Will there be holidays? Oh! Will there be music? Do you think people will be allowed to play violins? Who’s going to make the violins? Well? Oh, you don’t actually know, do you? Because, like every other tantrumming child in history, Bonnie, you don’t actually know what you want. So, let me ask you a question about this brave new world of yours. When you’ve killed all the bad guys, and when it’s all perfect and just and fair, when you have finally got it exactly the way you want it, what are you going to do with the people like you? The troublemakers. How are you going to protect your glorious revolution from the next one?
CLARA-Z: We’ll win.
DOCTOR: Oh, will you? Well, maybe, maybe you will win! But nobody wins for long. The wheel just keeps turning. So, come on. Break the cycle.

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It never rains but it pours

I wanted to make a quick announcement about (for me) some very exciting news. I am now officially an author of two — count ’em, two — chapters in published books.

The first is volume II of Unlocking Press’ Harry Potter for Nerds series which presents “Essays for Fans, Academic, and Lit Geeks” on J.K. Rowlings beloved series. Unlocking Press is the publishing arm of John Granger’s Hogwarts Professor blog, probably the source of the best Harry Potter scholarship out there. You can see Granger’s announcement post here, buy the book here, check out the official book launch page here, and even listen to the book’s editor Travis Prinzi of the Hogs Head website talk about the book here. If you’re unfamiliar with this crowd, I’m really in some esteemed company here. Granger and Prinzi have written several fantastic books between them. The book is co-edited by Kathryn McDaniel of Marietta College. Other contributors include Dr. Amy H. Sturgis and my fellow Mythgard Institute students Emily Strand, Laura Lee Smith, Kelly Orazi, and Kris Swank. My chapter is a character analysis of Lupin in The Prisoner of Azkaban.

Secondly, the follow-up to Open Court’s Doctor Who and PhilosophyMore Doctor Who and Philosophy: Regeneration Time — will be published on November 17, 2015. You can see and buy the book here. Edited by Courtland Lewis (University of Alabama) and Paula Smithka (University of Southern Mississippi), this is the latest in the Pop Culture and Philosophy series, which are always a lot of fun. Check out the official publisher webpage here. My chapter looks at the alchemical themes of the Russell T. Davies fourth series episode “Midnight.”

I’m not great a promoting my own stuff, but if anyone ends up reading my chapters or the full books come leave me a comment and tell me what you think!

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I Am Afraid, But I Will Sing – “The Girl Who Died”/”The Woman Who Lived” Review

ash-women-who-died-pub-scene-570x321The thing that really stands out about this melancholy and lyrical pair of episodes is how much they appear to be setting up and playing into, even more than the first four, the seasonal arc regarding the departure of Clara. In fact, I don’t think there’s been a series so focused on the impending exit of a companion since series two, which teased Rose’s exit with the notion of the “valiant child who will die in battle” and Rose’s own ironic (and hubristic) assertion that “people keep on trying to split [her and the Doctor] up but they never, ever will.” With Martha and Donna each in residence for only one full season, their stories were more or less told in one fell swoop. Leaving only five episodes in series 7, the Ponds’ exit (though certainly foreseen and foreshadowed) happened a bit more suddenly in the narrative. In contrast, series 9, like series 2, seems to be gearing up for the kind of big, emotional climax of something like the devastating “Doomsday.” In a sense, the whole series will be about the finale in a fundamental way.

Whereas Russell T. Davies made use of irony in writing out Rose–i.e. having her repeat with increasingly absolute confidence and even desperation that they will never be separated–Moffat seems inclined to emphasize the inevitability of Clara’s departure. Which just goes to reinforce Moffat’s overall aesthetic of metafiction, really. While Davies trades on the dramatic irony of the audience knowing something the characters don’t (namely, the Billie Piper had decided to leave the show), Moffat writes the characters as basically aware of the cycles of the show. Clara knows that there will be someone after her, and even finds that thought somewhat comforting. The Twelfth Doctor laments these cycles, but he also accepts them:

I’m sick of losing people. Look at you, with your eyes, and your never giving up, and your anger, and your kindness. One day, the memory of that will hurt so much that I won’t be able to breathe, and I’ll do what I always do. I’ll get in my box and I’ll run and I’ll run, in case all the pain ever catches up. And every place I go, it will be there.

There’s real poignancy in how his contemplation of the loss of Ashildr (and by implication, Clara) leads his thought back to Donna, and so to the revelation of the message implicit in his current face. And so, in defiance of fate, he saves Ashildr, something he knows to be, if not wrong, then decidedly dangerous.

Things become rather more complicated in part two, when we catch up with the wonderful Maisie Williams’ character. She’s become this strange melange of Doctor Who archetypes. Like the Doctor, she’s a long-lived immortal and therefore alone. She adapts to her ever-changing surroundings, abandoning/forgetting her old name and life, cutting all ties that would keep her from running from her past. She’s of course explicitly compared to Captain Jack Harkness, another human to have immortality thrust upon him against his wishes, but also like him she’s resentful of the Doctor’s abandonment. Like Elton Pope, Jackie Tyler, Lorna Bucket, and countless others, she’s been left behind. “I’ll be patron saint of the Doctor’s leftovers,” she declares with mingled warmth and bitterness. But of course, she’s also a companion, taking Clara’s place in this week’s adventure, learning that common lesson that it’s rather difficult to stay angry with the Doctor when you actually spend time with him. Or rather, he serves as her companion, teaching her the same compassion he’s been retaught many times over the years.

Hybridity is of course the recurring theme here. Missy talked in the premier about seeing the “friend in the enemy, the enemy in the friend.” Of course we saw Clara encased in the Dalek shell, a motif we’ve seen before. We know the Hybrid seems to be a monster coming down the pike, if not the season’s Big Bad. “Enemies are never a problem,” Ashildr asserts. “It’s your friends you have to watch out for. And my friend, I’ll be watching out for you.” All this means that we’re prompted to “watch out” for Clara, and the ambiguity is pointed. You “watch out” for people you care about, people you want to protect. You also “watch out” for danger. Although the Hybrid was presented as half-dalek, half-Time Lord by Davros, I’m laying down my bet now that Clara will have some part in it.

We’ve really only ever had one other companion-lite episode that I can think of in New Who: the chillingly bleak “Midnight.” Just as Doctor-lite stories tend to be about the Doctor’s influence in a particular way, so these stories–by the companion’s conspicuous absence–become about their role in the story. They are a key element, as essential as the Doctor. Fun and kick-ass as Lady Me is, she and the Doctor are not compatible. They are like the magnets that repel each other because of their similarity. “We need the mayflies,” the Doctor tells her. “They know how beautiful and precious life is because it’s so fleeting.” The laws of life (and alchemy) demand the union of opposites that attract. Lady Me declares the endless cycle of death and rebirth “boring,” but it’s also the opposite of stagnation. “I’m not going anywhere,” Clara assures the Doctor, but maybe she should. As the Doctor once eloquently put it, “Everything has to end sometime. Otherwise nothing would ever get started.”

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Die with Whoever Comes After Me – “Under the Lake”/”Before the Flood” Review

fisher kingAh, Toby Whithouse. Once a stalwart member of the core “reliable Doctor Who writers” group (like Mark Gatiss, but you know, good). Now a surprisingly polarizing figure of love-it-or-hate-it marmite. When and how did this happen? I’ve said that Whithouse has yet to write an episode of Doctor Who that I didn’t like, and that’s still largely true. “Under the Lake” & “Before the Flood” may be my least favorite of his episodes yet, but that’s not saying much as I have pretty positive feelings towards all of the others.

So what’s going on this year? I’ve seen it said that those who didn’t like series 8 are loving series 9 so far, and vice versa. Blogtor Who declared that no one had a bad word to say for the episodes. According to some, Whithouse apparently “gets” Capaldi’s Doctor in a way others haven’t. On the flipside, another cadre of of fan-academics whose opinions I respect (if not always agree with) seem to have sworn Whithouse off for his lack of creative ideas and traditionalism.

It’s one of those weird cases where the discourse around a particular episode is making it very hard for me to figure out what I think. As usual when things become political and polarized, I find myself somewhere in the middle, sympathizing with everybody and agreeing with nobody. Neither instant classic nor abject failure, I’m left both kind of admiring some potentially envelope-pushing ideas with a surprising lack of follow-through.

Let’s take the Fisher King for example. Before Mssrs. Gilliam & Williams came along, the Fisher King sprang from the Celtic roots of Arthurian legend. First appearing in Chretien de Troyes’ 12th century French romance Perceval, the famously wounded Fisher King is associated with the quest for the Holy Grail (he serves as the Grail’s guardian) and the fabled Waste Land. The legend goes that the fertility of a kingdom is derived from its king, and so his woundedness reflects and even causes the desolation of the landscape.

the waste landNow, we do get a sort of waste land in the episodes. The abandoned Cold War training ground on the Scottish heath looks about as barren and uninviting as you can get. But beyond that (and the relationship to water which the word “fisher” implies) I’m not sure what to make of the Fisher King’s significance. It feels like a slightly wasted opportunity, like the invocations of the Magician & the Witch were in the first set. Maybe I’ve been reading too many books on fairy tales lately, but I keep wanting Doctor Who to embrace its magical titles a bit more than it has been lately.

Let’s also take the opening monologue in which the Doctor breaks the fourth wall at considerable length and explains the bootstrap paradox to the audience. Pair with that the unusual structure of pairing a quite linear first episode with a non-linear, timey-wimey second half and I got properly excited at the prospect of the show intentionally going out of its way to break rules and experiment. This is of course more than a little undermined by the fact that Doctor Who employs the bootstrap paradox on a regular basis, and so it feels slightly silly for Clara to get freaked out by it when she’s already lived through the events of “The Name of the Doctor.” Isn’t that what makes her the Impossible Girl, after all? That’s why he calls her impossible!

Clara: But this is what I’ve already done. You’ve already seen me do it.

So where the story promises to be daring, it’s unfortunately not.

Now, before this gets too one-sided, there were several moments which redeem the story. The inclusion of the deaf character Cass is an obvious plus, and in particular the moment in “Before the Flood” when she’s stalked in the hallway by the ghost dragging the axe across the floor. This is a genuinely scary moment which relies on our being aware of a noise which she isn’t, evoking horror films like Wait Until Dark (in which a blind Audrey Hepburn is stalked by intruders which we can see but she can’t). I loved the cutting between the horrible scraping of the axe and her own perfectly-quiet POV. And yet, it doesn’t all become about her disadvantage because it’s her feeling the floor for vibrations that allows her to duck the axe and escape at the last moment. The use of the camera and visual cues to convey all of this was quite well done.

There are also some interesting character moments, particularly with furthering Clara’s increasingly bizarre story. Her emotional cue cards are clearly the big moment, indicating a kind of phoning-in of the traditional companion role as the Doctor’s conscience. Then there’s the great reversal, in which he (unsettled by her increasing alienation) awkwardly tries to act as her conscience.

Doctor: I just felt that I, I had to say something.

Clara:  I know, and I appreciated it.

Doctor: Because I’ve got a duty of care.

Clara: Which you take very seriously, I know.

Doctor: So can I stop now?

Clara: Please. Please do.

Finally, there’s the startlingly honest moment when she tells the Doctor not to die:

Clara: Not with me! Die with whoever comes after me. You do not leave me.

From Clara the bossy control-freak who creates and image of perfection for those around her, this is a pretty raw glimpse of selfishness, but one that feels true and perfectly relatable. Reluctant though we might be to admit it, we all want to push the consequences off onto the next day, the next adventure, the next person. In this way, Clara’s embracing of her own selfishness actually feels like progression for the character.

Finally, with all of the ghosts and lost love in this episode, Danny’s ghost is certainly hovering around in spirit if not invoked outright. Clara’s painful admission in “In the Forest of the Night” that she “doesn’t want to be the last of [her] kind” seems interesting in light of her consoling words to Bennett that in the face of loss he should “keep going”:

You have to. Take it from me, there’s a whole world out there. A galaxy, a life.

The woman who keeps running, never looking back because she dare not out of shame? I’m not sure, just some food for thought.

Next time: Maisie Williams. Vikings. The return of Jamie Mathieson and the first episode by Catherine Tregenna. Ohmygodohmygodohmygod. Permission to squee.

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Always Mercy – “The Witch’s Familiar” Review

Hanged ClaraI have to confess to be slightly disappointed by “The Witch’s Familiar” on my initial viewings. Neither half had the slightly mystical vibe implied by the titles. Clara was frustratingly passive throughout the episode. The Doctor/Davros plot didn’t really end up going anywhere in particular: Davros remains unrepentant, and both were playing each other the whole time.

In hindsight, these episodes may fare better once we know the plots that they seem to be setting up:

  • the notion of the Hybrid, and the Doctor’s role in creating it
  • the Doctor’s confession
  • whatever Missy is up to

This opening two-parter does a fine job of initiating those seasonal arcs, I’m sure, but I’m not sure it stands alone quite as well as some of Moffat’s previous season premiers, such as “The Eleventh Hour” or even “The Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon.”

There are silver linings to these criticisms, to be sure. My frustration with Clara’s passivity just further proves to me how unusual a phenomena this is in New Who. The companions, including and emphatically Clara, are usually not pushed around quite so much. Sure, watching Missy push her around is fun, especially in the comedic moments such as when she daintily shoves her into the pit to test its depth. In that way, pairing Clara with Missy functions much the same way as pairing her with the Twelfth Doctor: Combining the control freak with an aggressive and pushy Time Lord who knows how to ruffle her normally carefully-groomed feathers. That said, after being hung upside down as bait, pushed down a hole, handcuffed to a wall, and trapped in a Dalek shell, I was ready for Clara to take more agency in her own rescue by the end than just pleading the Doctor for mercy. Again, this is hardly damning for the character. This will surely remain and anomaly in the overall journey of Clara Oswald as we approach the end.

Speaking of the Dalek shell, I can’t also help but feel the slight wasted opportunity for further exploration here. The Dalek shell seems to translate Clara’s emotions and pleas for help into violent outbursts and the trademark imperative, “Exterminate!” Did the show really just imply that the Daleks are all inside their suits bursting with emotion due to their inability to communicate their fear and pain? That’s quite a bold assertion if so, and I hope the show goes back to explore this idea in the future.

To come back to Davros, it’s largely because his scenes with the Doctor are so touching and unsettling that I find it slightly disappointing to have it all have been a ruse in the end. In fact, I think I’ll keep the head-canon that it wasn’t all fake just to satisfy myself. As others have said, his genuine happiness at discovering the Time Lords were saved and his earnest assertion that the Doctor should protect his people are quite fitting and in keeping with Davros’ nationalist ethos. I think it’s much nicer to think that, not knowing whether his trap would work on the Doctor, Davros allowed some true emotion and fear of death to come through in order to strengthen their kinship and sweeten the pot.

Hanged ManOne thing that I do think is worth spending a few moments on before leaving off is the symbolism of Clara’s hanging upside down. As noted by others, Clara’s position is conspicuously reminiscent of the famed Hanged Man. Now, I’m no tarot expert, so I’m relying on google here. I’d love to hear some thoughts from others in the comments. However, in some brief searches, the symbolism seems quite suggestive to me. This website talks about the Hanged Man in relation to surrender. Key words are letting go, accepting fate, giving up control. It’s a card of suspended action and sacrifice. This all seems quite relevant in light of Clara Oswald, the self-described bossy control freak. In fact, I think that’s largely what season 8 was about: Clara learning that she can’t control everything, that life will happen. Fittingly, the opposing cards listed below are all about action, assertion, struggle, control. Interestingly, the Magician is listed as one of these opposing cards. Where does that put the Doctor in regard to Clara’s arc? Is he still struggling to hold on and act (he is quite desperate to save her in a very un-Twelfth-Doctorish way), or will he facilitate her process of letting go?

Knowing that we’re coming to end of Clara’s story, I can’t help but read a lot of resonance into this description of the card:

The main lesson of the Hanged Man is that we ‘control’ by letting go — we ‘win’ by surrendering. The figure […] has sacrificed himself, but he emerges the victor. The Hanged Man also tells us that we can ‘move forward’ by standing still. By suspending time, we can have all the time in the world.

If I’m being really generous, maybe this zen approach to life’s struggles even justifies Clara’s seeming passivity in the episode. She’s learned to win by accepting loss. Like the Doctor, she has learned compassion and wouldn’t die of anything else. No longer will she take the Doctor down with her in the flames of a volcano just to protest the death of loved one. Now, he’s “last person she would ever kill” and she merely asks for his mercy and friendship.

I may have just talked myself into liking this episode a lot more. That either says a lot about me or Doctor Who, and I think I’d like to go with the latter.

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No, I’ve Not Turned Good! – “The Magician’s Apprentice” Review

The Doctor is back, autumn is in the air, and all is right with the world.

Clara & MissySo, who exactly is the Magician’s apprentice? The episode was less Narnian than many expected given the title, except insofar as it serves as the origin story for a significant mythological figure, in this case Davros as opposed to Lewis’ Professor Diggory Kirk of The Magician’s Nephew. The surprise appearance of this frightened, vulnerable, and rather doomed little boy complicates the question of which of our characters is truly the spiritual inheritor of the Doctor’s legacy. The titular magician is of course the Doctor, made especially explicit by his own dialogue:

DOCTOR: What do you think of the new look? I was hoping for minimalism, but I think I came out with magician.

—- Series 8, “Time Heist”

It’s certainly not the first time (nor the last, I’d bet good money) that Davros and/or the Daleks have accused the Doctor of sharing their ideology and methods. All that’s changed here is that we see that’s (potentially) literally true.

DOCTOR: Davros made the Daleks, but who made Davros?

If anything, the point veers towards being made too literally, with the final shot of the Doctor pointing a Dalek whisk at poor young Davros and declaring his intention to “exterminate” him somewhat lacking in subtlety. Hey, it’s the Doctor. If he’s going to embrace the Dalek ethos, he’s going to do it in style.

But really the interesting question is, if Davros is the Doctor’s apprentice, what does that make Clara, and by extension, all of the companions? My guess is that the answer, again, lies hidden in the titles. I love the call-response nature of the titles this year, with each pair of echoing titles, seemingly asking and answering a question. It goes along with the Twelfth Doctor’s penchant for Socratic dialogues (or occasionally monologues). So, if Davros is the Doctor’s apprentice, perhaps that makes Clara the Witch’s Familiar.

I have to confess that, love Capaldi and Coleman as much as I do, I enjoyed nothing in this episode so much as Michelle Gomez. Her take on the brazen and bonkers Missy has been such a revelation, and made me appreciate the potential for the character even more than the zany John Simm. She is equal parts charisma and cruelty, and goes even farther than River Song in demonstrating how a female Doctor could work. In fact, she’s so good as to make one wish she’d been held back for that inevitability.

The language is interesting to note here. It’s a fascinating aspect of our language that gendered words often have moral values (intentionally or not) encoded into them. While wizards and magicians can be used neutrally, the witch in folklore and fantasy has a quality of villainy that is difficult to divorce from the word. Not that it’s impossible, but you have to go out of your way, as L. Frank Baum or J.K. Rowling do: The tide of popular consensus is against you. This works for Missy, who revels in reminding Clara of her enthusiasm for evil: “No, I’ve not turned good!” she exclaims, thickening her Scottish brogue and vaporizing UNIT guards with abandon.

And yet, despite Missy’s open villainy, there are several shared qualities that make her and Clara a good pair: The feminine energy, a certain cunning and duplicity, and above all their mutual concern for their best mate, the Doctor. The fact that Missy is willing to drop everything to come to the Doctor’s aid speaks volumes. Her description of the idealized philia love shared with the Doctor is kind of inspired and genuinely unsettling. You get the impression that Missy’s love would be a rather terrible thing, that she can and will gleefully tear down civilizations for the sake of her beloved. Clara’s position by Missy’s side is never a secure one: Just moments before they’re joyfully skipping around the starfield, Clara looks justifiably concerned that Missy might just jettison her into deep space.

And yet, there’s something fun about the idea of Clara as the witch’s familiar. For one thing, “familiar” does sound far less patronizing than “apprentice”. It’s mirrors the shift from “assistant” to  the more egalitarian “companion.” A familiar isn’t a student or a protege, but a helper. Indeed, it’s another word for companion. After seeing Clara become increasingly Doctorish in series 8, perhaps this is a signal of her shifting from trying to be the magician’s apprentice and taking a few lessons from the Doctor’s greatest and oldest friend, the Master, who regularly comes back from death to be with her friend again. Given that Clara is apparently shot and killed at the end of the episode, now would be a good time to emulate that particular skill.

Two-partners are notoriously difficult to discuss, so meet me back here next week to see if any of this still makes any sense.

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Miscellaneous Links for September 2015

Today’s post is brought to you by Pope Francis, who currently has stopped traffic and generally all other signs of life here in Philadelphia. I’m taking advantage of the three day weekend to get caught up on some reading and other work, and thought I’d take the opportunity to share a few noteworthy links.

First, the second volume of Unlocking Press’ Harry Potter for Nerds is now available for pre-order and will officially be available on October 15th. While I’m always happy to see a new HP book on the market, I’m particularly excited about this one as it features my very first formal publication! It’s the analytical essay on Remus Lupin that I always wanted to write, and I hope everyone enjoys reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Even cooler, the book features no less than six pieces by Mythgard Institute-affiliated writers: Dr. Amy H. Sturgis, and Mythgard students Kris Swank, Kelly Orazi, Laura Lee Smith, Emily Strand, and myself. These are all excellent writers and lovely people, and I’m quite proud to be in their company.

On a related note, I’ve recently registered for the free annual Harry Potter conference at Chestnut Hill College which combines with the Chestnut Hill Harry Potter Festival to make one of the premier HP weekends in the country. I’ve heard great things but never been able to go, so this year I’m finally making the trek. I have no plans to present as of yet, but they are still accepting abstracts until October 1st in case any of you are interested. I’m really excited to hopefully see some friends and colleagues there, as well as finally meet some of my favorite scholars such as John Granger and Maria Tatar. Check out the official website and join us if you’re able!

I will also be attending another one-day conference: Mythgard’s regional east-coast Midmoot to be held at the University of Maryland next Saturday, October 3rd. Both Dr. Corey Olsen (The Tolkien Professor) and Dr. Verlyn Flieger (noted Tolkien scholar and editor of the recently published unfinished Tolkien story Kullervo) will be in attendance, as will lots of other scholars and students of Tolkien and speculative fiction. You can get the details and register here.

Switching gears a bit, I hope all you Doctor Who fans enjoyed the series 9 premier, “The Magician’s Apprentice.” I am planning to revive my traditional episode analysis blog, although these may be somewhat shorter and less in-depth than it past years, both because my schedule has become rather tight and also because my podcasting partner and I are actually pretty close behind. If you’ve not been following Kat and Curt’s TV Re-View regularly, Curtis and I just posted our super-sized episode discussion of “The Day of the Doctor” (plus a rather subpar episode of Angel). This means we’ll be blasting our way through the extant Capaldi era rather quickly. In case you missed it, we recently announced that once we catch up with New Who, we’ll be starting weekly discussions of the new series of Battlestar Galactica interspersed with bonus posts on the Classic series of Doctor Who, so keep your eyes peeled for announcements concerning those.

Finally, the Tolkien Professor also announced that as part of Signum University/Mythgard Institute’s annual fundraiser, he’ll be discussing an episode of Doctor Who live (episode TBC – and he’s accepting recommendations and bribes), and Curtis and I will join him at the end of the analysis! Here are the fundraiser webpage and links to all the various events. Our event will be held Thursday October 22nd at 7 pm EDT. Please join us live if you can, as this discussion won’t be posted/podcasted after the fact.

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