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Is "Feast" or "Famine" best for Doctor Who?

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Author Topic: Is "Feast" or "Famine" best for Doctor Who?  (Read 243 times)
Vampyros Adric
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« on: May 24, 2012, 09:44:53 am »

In the recent interview given to Digital Spy, show runner Steven Moffat had the following to say about the scheduling of Doctor Who...

"The more Doctor Who becomes a perennial, the faster it starts to die. You've got to shake it up, you've got to keep people on edge and wondering when it will come back.

"Sherlock is the prime example, as far as that goes. Sherlock almost exists on starving its audience. By the time it came back this year, Sherlock was like a rock star re-entering the building!

"So keeping Doctor Who as an event, and never making people feel, 'Oh, it's lovely, reliable old Doctor Who - it'll be on about this time, at that time of year'. Once you start to do that, just slowly, it becomes like any much-loved ornament in your house - ultimately invisible. And I don't want that to ever be the case.

Now, I am someone who is deeply obsessed with the show and there is not a day goes by when something Doctor Who related does not enter my life. In addition, the whole point of the classic series was that it was a reliable fixture in the BBC winter schedule, every Saturday tea-time just after the football results and before the Generation Game....

...But I have to say, I kind of agree with The Moff on this. I am now firmly of the opinion that the less Doctor Who we have, the better quality we get. I want Doctor Who to receive the same acclaim as Sherlock and I wonder if, on this occasion, Moff isn't right? Should Doctor Who scale back on the quantity and focus upon quality and impact?
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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2012, 05:28:58 pm »

I commented in the Mission to the Unknown thread about shaking things up - basically, I agree to some extent, but I don't think messing around too much with the schedule is a good thing.  That caused a lot of problems in the 80s - though it would probably have less effect now, with recording and iPlayer.

I wouldn't want less DW.  2009 worked as a one-off, although even then it maybe created too much expectation for each of the specials.  That's not a problem as long as they live up to it.

My early experience of the show was very much of it being a fixture - in the first few years, it was only off the air for a few weeks each year.  I don't think that would work now (either from a production or audience point of view) but I think a 13-week series and a Christmas special is just about right.
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« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2012, 12:59:57 am »

I don't think there is any harm whatsoever in airing the show in a regular annual slot. Why Moff feels the need to come abd play about with it is beyond me. I often get the feeling with him that he does things just because he can. I'd much prefer he leave DW alone and go be experimental with Sherlock instead. I can cope with the extra wait while the show moves to the Autumn but when it's there I'd like him to leave it be. When RTD was in charge it was in the same slot every year and the figures didn't die off so there obvioulsy isn't a problem. If anything, bumping it around the schedules will do more harm than good. And I definitely can't be doing with less episodes.

Going deeper though, and no fault of the Moffs at all, is that the BBC need to give it a time slot and stick to it instead of shifting it from week to week. During series 5 and 6 I don't think it aired in the time slot two weeks in a row even once. Even if it's only 5 or 10 minutes difference I find it really annoying. They would never do it with Eastenders so they shouldn't do it with DW.
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