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DOCTOR WHO - S11, E6 - "DEMONS OF THE PUNJAB"...


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#1 FarscapeOne

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Posted 11 November 2018 - 10:40 AM

India, 1947. The Doctor and her friends arrive in the Punjab, as the country is being torn apart. While Yaz attempts to discover her grandmother's hidden history, the Doctor discovers demons haunting the land. Who are they and what do they want?

#2 RJDiogenes

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Posted 11 November 2018 - 06:16 PM

Ah, finally some focus on Yaz.
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#3 FarscapeOne

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Posted 12 November 2018 - 12:11 PM

I am really liking the smaller scale of stories this year.  It makes the series feel bigger, ironically.  It's the only way I can word what I feel.

No end of the world/galaxy/universe/time threat.  Just a few people in need each time, and just helping.

This season feels like QUANTUM LEAP in that regard... little ripples of helping that will make even more ripples throughout.

#4 G-man

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Posted 12 November 2018 - 04:50 PM

Well.  That was certainly a melancholy episode.

On the plus side, this was the first I had heard about the violence that occurred at the partitioning of India.  So, kudos to the show getting back to its educational roots.

/s/

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#5 RJDiogenes

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Posted 12 November 2018 - 05:14 PM

This was definitely the best episode of the season so far-- a perfect example of the right way to do relevancy through allegory.

The script hit its several nails on the head each time:   The older brother representing the generation who fought for unity and is now watching it fall apart because the naive younger generation has been swept up in ideology-- "reading pamphlets and listening to angry voices on the radio."  The older brother is ultimately not only betrayed by his younger brother, but killed by a man who fought with him in the war.  Using a seldom-explored historical event to illuminate the current political climate, and making it personal for one of the characters by involving their family history, was perfect and elegant-- and putting it in an unfamiliar, though very real, context is a great way of helping those who are repeating history see themselves.  "Nothing worse than when normal people lose their minds."

And, of course, the Doctor has the cure, which is seldom implemented:  "Love, in all its forms, is the most powerful weapon we have because love is a form of hope and, like hope, love abides in the face of everything."

If there was one problem with the script, it was that the speech patterns of the Indian characters in 1947 was much too modern. Maybe the Doctor's universal translator is really nuanced, or maybe the writer just wanted to make it comfortable for the intended audience so that the message would go down easier. But in terms of historical fiction, a little research would have lent some verisimilitude to the proceedings.

It was nice to see Yaz get the spotlight at last, although Ryan and Graham certainly had their moments. I love Ryan's mild-mannered affect when things happen like being transported into an alien spaceship.  "Nice. That was cool."  :lol:  And poor Graham, talking to the bridegroom about everything going to hell, assuring him that he was a good man, and all the while knowing that he was about to die.  :(

Oh, yeah, there were aliens in the story, too.  The deadliest assassins in the history of forever-- except they've learned their lesson, and now they just stand vigil for people who die alone.  That was a nice touch.   Antagonists who are not really villains seems to be a recurring theme this year.
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#6 Christopher

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Posted 12 November 2018 - 05:58 PM

View PostRJDiogenes, on 12 November 2018 - 05:14 PM, said:

Using a seldom-explored historical event


Seldom-explored in the US. It's very important and well-known in the history of the Subcontinent and the UK. (And this is the second Doctor Who story about it, the first being the 2008 Tenth Doctor novel Ghosts of India by Mark Morris. The author of "Demons of the Punjab" took care not to contradict the novel.)



Quote

If there was one problem with the script, it was that the speech patterns of the Indian characters in 1947 was much too modern. Maybe the Doctor's universal translator is really nuanced, or maybe the writer just wanted to make it comfortable for the intended audience so that the message would go down easier. But in terms of historical fiction, a little research would have lent some verisimilitude to the proceedings.

That's hardly fair. The scriptwriter did plenty of research, and even posted links to his sources on his Twitter feed. Presumably he made a stylistic choice to have them speak in modern idiom so they'd be relatable. After all, if the TARDIS was telepathically translating their Punjabi speech in the time travelers' minds, why wouldn't the travelers hear it in their own vernacular as well as their own language?
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#7 Norville

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 09:07 PM

This is the first S11 episode I thought was actually good, despite its faults, and it helped that Vinay Patel wrote it without Chibnall intruding enough to give himself cowriting credit. Patel has the cultural background to have been more aware of the British Partition of India than random non-Indian/Pakistani fans, and no doubt did research what he may not have already learned about it in his life, so let's not claim he should've done "a little research."

I've read a rumour that isn't really confirmed yet, but apparently, not only will the Christmas special become a New Year's Day special, it's possible that Chibnall can't deliver as much DW as expected -- he may be going for S11 in 2018, 2019 special, S12 in 2020, 2021 special, S13 in 2022, 2023 special (his and Whittaker's last), and allegedly didn't make that clear to the BBC (apparently not being good at open and honest communication even with his bosses), so they're not best pleased with him. He may be doing the specials as a way to be able to claim that he did deliver some DW that year as showrunner. *sigh* Five more years of this? Spare me...
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#8 Christopher

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Posted 15 November 2018 - 09:13 PM

View PostNorville, on 15 November 2018 - 09:07 PM, said:

I've read a rumour that isn't really confirmed yet

Which means you really shouldn't worry about it, since most rumors are false.
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