Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside


Leave a comment

Dr Who – Revisiting The 11th Doctor

Image may contain: 1 person, text

I have recently gone back into the world of Dr Who the infamous and bold alien time traveler – after David Tennant left the show it was oddly difficult as he brought our family together on Saturday evenings in way that had only happened with game and talk shows. Matt Smith was for the moment hard to digest like a biscuit that had not been drenched in a  warm cup of tea.

I have since grown on his bizarre idiosyncrasies, neologisms and endless quirks through contrasting storytelling arching and swaying, moving me to tears and making me laugh this certainly is a darker doctor akin to what Sylvestor Mccoy was trying to do (but the BBC and the audience didn’t understand) I am thankful to re-visit oddball Matt in more objective widing lense.

Paul Isaacs 2017

Advertisements


Leave a comment

Dr Who – The Invasion – DVD Review

 

This DVD is a 2-Disc Edition of The Invasion with two missing episodes which have been animated 

PLOT

The is an “Earth Story” and this would become a staple of the 3rd Doctor Era the title suggests the main plot of the story aliens that are preparing for a global invasion starting with the United Kingdom.

The main plot is an expansion on themes used in the Troughton “cyberstories” which includes the dangers of technology and how this has an effect on people, communication devices such as video links are used throughout preempting such devices that we take for granted now, as well as the political dangers of single force wanting to control the world. The cast are colourful, deep and imaginative with enigmatic performances, tight dialogue and atmosphere.

PICTURE 

The picture is sharp, detailed with a good deal of contrast and saturation although at times the picture is a tab soft probably due to age . I viewed this in HD upscaled 1080p 60 frames per second. Overall there is  higher clearer definition of picture quality.

Image result for dr who invasion animated

ANIMATED EPISODES

The animated episodes are well done with excellent attention to detail, sharp background contrasts, faithful character design and animation lends to the atmosphere of the serial in turns of camera direction which feels less cinematic and more faithful to how it would have looked and excellent job by Cosgrove Hall.

AUDIO

The audio is clear with few hisses and artifactual noise this is something that I have noted in Hartnell and Troughton era that attention by the Restoration Team is paid not only to the image but also the quality of sound which is of course is restricted by technology at the time.

CONCLUSION

This is really classic Troughton at its best a tight another tight endearing story by  Kit Pedler about technology, fabulous direction with stunning visuals and atmosphere, great memorable and enigmatic performances. One of my favorites.  Highly Recommended.

Paul Isaacs 2017


Leave a comment

Dr Who – The Moonbase – DVD Review

 

 

This DVD is a The Moonbase with two missing episodes which have been animated 

PLOT

The plot revolves around the Doctor and his companions landing on the lunar surface were a complex weather station controls and maintains the weather of the entire world through gravitational pull. The cybermen are all but legend destroyed many years ago. However a mysterious illness is plaguing the base and eerie shadows reveal a familiar enemy.

The main plot deals with many interesting aspects of the future, a space station on the moon which is habitable, a weather station that controls and protects the people of earth and the jeopardy of this station failing mixed with whodunit esque subplot which brings both the Doctor and his companions into full and colourful characterisation.

Image result for dr who moonbase dvd

PICTURE 

The picture is sharp, detailed and well balanced with good colour saturation considering its age with. I viewed this in HD upscaled 1080p 60 frames per second. Overall there is  higher clearer definition of picture quality.

Image result for dr who moonbase dvd

ANIMATED EPISODES

The animated episodes are well done with good pathos and atmosphere which matches the feel of the other episodes, I would however say they went more for a cinematic feel in the terms of camera angles and shots which may divide fans. I enjoyed the visual renditions which do stay faithful to the overall character and set-pieces plus the cybermen look amazing and well detailed.

AUDIO

The audio is clear with a few artificial hisses and pops here and there overall a worthy and crisp audio considering its age dialogue is clear  as well as the nerve jangling and atmospheric score which is a treat to hear much like in in Tomb of the Cybermen.

CONCLUSION

With yet another gritty and ambitious story  and script by Kit Pedler about technology getting too advanced and going awry, fantastic set-pieces, sturdy characterisation of the main players and and interesting sub-plot this is Dr Who at its best. Highly Recommended.

Paul Isaacs 2017


Leave a comment

Dr Who – Tomb of the Cybermen – Revisitations DVD Review

 

This DVD is a 2-disc Special Edition of Tomb of the Cybermen with upgraded video and audio as well as new special features.

PLOT

The plot is a dark and brooding entry for the infamous cybermen instilling a sense of dread as an expedition has found a dormant tomb that holds creatures from a distant past who are slumbering. The characterisation is at times dated but the overall composition of technology gone awry is potent in this story, human greed, selfishness and sacrifice are themes as the doctor who in his sage wisdom warns them of the dangers of tampering with technology that they do not understand. A metaphor in itself.

  

PICTURE 

The Revisitations DVD is a worthy upgrade from the earlier edition with a sharper picture, deeper colour saturation, minor enhancements to the images when the the title are overlaid is a worthy mention too. I viewed this in HD upscaled 1080p 60 frames per second. Overall there is  higher clearer definition of picture quality.

AUDIO

The audio is clear with a few artificial hisses and pops here and there overall a worthy and crisp audio considering its age dialogue is clear as well as the nerve jangling and atmospheric score which is a treat to hear.

CONCLUSION

With polished and ambitious story  and script by Kit Pedler with high tension and plenty of bite to a worthy video and audio upgrade as well as a host of extras this a must see for fans of classic Who. Recommended

Paul Isaacs 2017


Leave a comment

Dr Who – Power of the Daleks – DVD Review

 

This DVD is a treat BBC Animation team have wonderfully restored via animation The Power of the Daleks which Patrick Troughton’s first serial as the Doctor.

PLOT

The plot starts off at the end of The Tenth Planet a mysterious new figure emerges from the floor looking rather different, both the companions are confused and shocked by this new person who doesn’t look nor act like “their doctor”. The have landed on a planet called Vulcan with an earth space colony settlement already established there.

I have to say the plot is well crafted, eerie, ambitious, dark and full of melancholy with a tremendous amount of deep clever exposition within the story the new doctor, the whodunnit style back story, the power conflicts between primary characters and the introduction of  daleks that are far more devious, deceptive and clever  than in previous serials this is a really mature and adult which is both refreshing and well-suited.

Image result for power of the daleks

ANIMATION & PICTURE 

The animation is superb it is filmed in a 16:9 frame (rather than the conventional 4:3 of the time). I viewed this in HD upscaled 1080p 60 frames per second.  The intros are retained in film and the credits faithfully restored. The animation itself is shot in black and white with a mixture of 2D and 3D animation which is faithful to the story, the sets and the actors who appeared in them.

AUDIO

The audio (from the original serial) matches perfectly with animation all the set and character idiosyncrasies are perfectly retained. It is a clear a lot of love and care had gone into the recreation and it shows. I choose the 5.1 downmix and it has a lot of activity, detail and depth with good bass and a cinematic feel.

CONCLUSION

With an amazing video and audio display and a hefty lot of extras this is truly and must buy for any Doctor Who fan or science-fiction buff. This shows off what the BBC restoration team can do for future “lost episodes” in the future.

Paul Isaacs 2016


Leave a comment

Tom Baker – The Fourth Doctor – Top 10 Stories

Tom Baker’s performance as the the Fourth incarnation of The Doctor is an impressive, quirky, odd idiosyncratic performance her is my person list of my favourite stories.

  1. Ark in Space
  2. Genesis of the Daleks
  3. Planet of Evil
  4. Pyramids Of Mars
  5. Hand of Fear
  6. The Deadly Assassin
  7. The Robots of Death
  8. The Leisure Hive
  9. The Keep of Traken
  10. Logopolis

Paul Isaacs 2015


Leave a comment

The Forgotten Davros – Destiny Of David Gooderson

Davros Destiny Of The Daleks 19793

                              Davros & Daleks

David Gooderson’s portrayal of Davros seems to much of an issue over the years – the serial and story Destiny Of The Daleks is unique for many reasons and may well have more reverence in evolution of the Daleks characters themselves but also of their creator

Dalek Personalities & Behaviours 

One of the distinct changes in that comes with this serial is in the Daleks themselves they seem to have more exposition than in other stories, they are not drones nor mindless machines but creatures of more instinct. Firstly they want to got back to the person who created them for his help, guidance and knowledge.

They are able to go against code by willing sacrificial extermination for their leader which is one of the more suspenseful aspects of episode four, they interrogate for knowledge but use the people for their own ends rather than just doing away with them. To me this is certainly a worthy evolution of character some say this isn’t good however for this story and echoes of later stories this would certainly would be used.

Davros Destiny Of The Daleks 19791

Davros & The Doctor

Davros – David Gooderson

Gooderson’s performance is very good he sets bar that would be used in future portrayals of the character he is angry but at the same time optimistic at what he can do with this creations – to change them and improve upon them this could be seen as the start of the trilogy story arc in fifth, sixth and seventh incarnations of the The Doctor and his “love hate” relationship he has with him. I like his performance for his snide and clever remarks to the doctor with adding dark wit and morbid sarcasm to narrative.

What Could Help?

To be honest a second special edition could help with regards to many of the budgetary aspects of the series at the time. After seeing the amazing job the restoration team had achieved on Day Of The Daleks it seems more likely that it could be done.

Here is my Special Edition wish list

  • Ring modulate Davros’ voice (the problem isn’t Gooderson’s portrayal it is the lack of voice distortion)
  • Give Davros’ eye a real glow when he comes back to life
  • Re-do the Dalek energy blasts again (I liked the Day of the Daleks special edition effects)
  • Re-do Movellan gun blasts again
  • Reduce judder when Davros is in movement (this may be hard to do but attempt would be great)
  • Modify Movellan ship
  • Modify Dalek perspectives shots (looking for the Doctor and Davros)
  • Touch up the Daleks appearance (cracks, bumps, chipped paint etc)
  • Touch up Davros’ chair (cracks, chipped paint)
  • Redo The Dalek pursuit scenes – towards the Movellan ships

Davros’ Fan-Made Voice Distortion & Additional Sound Effects 

Conclusion

Without Destiny & Gooderson’s performance you would not have the key elements that would make the Dalek serials so interesting in the Davison, Baker & McCoy era. His performance has been overlooked by fans and viewers alike put for me he sets the precedent that would be the continual evolution of the character and to me that is a very important thing to happen in “Who” history.

Paul Isaacs 2015