When I first heard Doctor Who was coming back onto our screens after a sixteen year absence I was as excited as any other fan could be. With all the huge improvements in special effects and a much bigger budget how could it possibly fail to be anything other than great television, my expectations were sky high. To say the new series came as a bitter disappointment would be a massive understatement.
I had been a great fan of the first four doctors from the original series for as long as I can remember and though I tended to lose interest after the Tom Baker years I none the less retained a great affection for the show. The program used to have a recognizable story line, interesting characters and for the most part imaginative scripts courtesy of the writers. The new series has none of these. You just have to compare the abilities of a modern writer such as Russell T Davies or any of the others involved to the likes of Terry Nation, Malcolm Hulke, Robert Holmes and Douglas Adams to name but a few to know where the cream of talent resides, i.e in the past.
Christopher Eccleston is a good actor but because the Doctor's characterization in the script is so poor Eccleston goes around the whole time with a cheesy smile and generally flounders about trying to find something to work with within the void that has been written for him. Is it any wonder he chucked the part after just one season?.
Billie Piper may have a dormant talent hidden somewhere deep within her and if so then I wish she would hurry up and find it because she certainly cannot act. First we had to endure her pop career and none ability to sing being thrust down our throats for a couple of years, now it seems we're in for the long haul as far as her none ability to act is concerned. 'Good Looks' does not automatically mean someone has talent. The character of Rose is particularly boring and with the way Piper plays it, totally devoid of interest.
The stories are all rush and push, the point seemingly being to get the whole thing over as quickly as possible so the viewers don't get a moment to think. It's depressing to believe that audiences seem to have the concentration span of a particularly lazy amoeba these days. How people can get conned into thinking this sort of rubbish is quality telly I cannot begin to imagine!.
Next gripe is about the humour. There has always been quite a good amount of humour involved with Doctor Who, particularly with Patrick Troughton and Tom Baker. This was usually in context, with good-natured banter between the Doctor and his companions or the ribbing of an enemy such as Davros which made an excellent 'straight man' for Tom's Doctor. It was excruciatingly embarrassing when Eccleston's Doctor told one of the monsters to "stop farting" or words to that effect in one of the episodes and I would have difficulty in coming up with anything more unsubtle in it's place. Nobody would write a new Three Men In A Boat book complete with 'Nob Gags' or remake HMS Pinafore with Captain Corcoran walking out of the lavatory saying "I'd give it ten minutes if I were you", so why plunder and destroy the legacy of an all-time si-fi classic?.
In short, if this is the best that modern television can do then I personally will stick with the old stuff. This new series is cheaper in every respect apart from the money it took to make it. It is dross for the Reality TV generation and they can keep it!. A fabulous opportunity sadly lost.