Wednesday 18 May 2011

Lawrence Miles on the Doctor Who Brand

Lawrence Miles' Doctor Who Thing- Sell Sec 2: "The Deadly Art of Doctor Who"

...we note that all the factors used to keep the series solvent in the 20-teens are favourites of the modern sci-fi fan. You know the ones I mean, you can count 'em off yourselves. Ratings are always a treacherous guide, but is anyone really surprised that viewing figures went back up for "Curse of the Black Spot"? Doctor Who vs Pirates vs Mermaids isn't terribly original, yet at least it puts the programme in a different space from anything else on TV. Well, until the Johnny Depp movie a few days later. An Angel-age storyline about a time-baby pregnancy, or snatches of future events that aren't designed to be comprehensible even to the dedicated viewer, are of no interest to anyone except - ironically, given recent controversies - the kind of people who care about spoilers. If the Termite Art version of television provokes the viewer into going outside and poking around to see what's there (and I still hold that this is what most good telly does, especially children's telly), then this is more like siege conditions. Branding always closes the gates. This is your product, you don't need anything else.

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