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Blogs about Paul & his work

 
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scribble



Joined: 22 Apr 2009
Posts: 578
Location: walking the quiet lanes of Pleasureville

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2009 7:39 pm    Post subject: Blogs about Paul & his work Reply with quote

The Gallifreyian Gazette: Paul McGann, The Eighth Doctor (July 2007)
http://gallifreyian.blogspot.com/2007/07/paul-mcgann-eight-doctor.html

Ciaran Meets The Stars (2008)
http://www.ciaranbrown.com/mcgann.html

The Time Vortex - The Eighth Doctor Bio (Aug 2008)
http://jmctimelord.blogspot.com/2008/06/eighth-doctor-bio.html

Review and commentary of Withnail and I (Feb 2009)
http://thisdistractedglobe.com/2009/02/18/withnail-and-i/#more-4442
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"Listen carefully. This is the secret of how to live: fire your gun before somebody else does." ~ Scribble, Vurt


Last edited by scribble on Mon Nov 09, 2009 4:20 am; edited 1 time in total
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scribble



Joined: 22 Apr 2009
Posts: 578
Location: walking the quiet lanes of Pleasureville

PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 3:58 am    Post subject: Thought y'all might enjoy reading this blog entry, too. Reply with quote

The Kicked Crypt of Jonathan L. Howard
http://jonathanlhoward.livejournal.com/9416.html

All Grown Up
Nov. 6th, 2009 at 8:29 PM

Somehow I have snuck up on middle-age, and yet still feel thoroughly juvenile. I have developed a sensible persona that figuratively smokes a sensible pipe, wears a sensible cardigan, wears sensible horn-rims, and has a sensible red setter, called Sensible. I have long since developed an air of maturity and reliable common sensibility of the sort usually demonstrated by John Mills when he's commanding a submarine.

It is all bollocks.

Today produced an excellent example of how thin that veneer is. I was in Bristol, having a not particularly satisfactory day. I was walking down the hill on Park Street and was just on College Green, when I walked past a chap -- a quite disgustingly handsome chap I might add -- whom I recognised as Paul McGann. McGann, should you not be familiar with the name, is not only disgustingly handsome but also a distressingly talented actor. He has an impressive list of roles that you would already know all about if you'd clicked the hyperlink I thoughtfully provided in the last but one sentence. I would assume he's currently busy doing promotional work for next week's ITV drama "Collision," in which he appears. I don't know, nor is it especially important. There was one thing that is important, one thing that, as a man in his mid-forties, I am both embarrassed and gleeful to tell.

Paul McGann was Doctor Who.

I like Doctor Who. I always have. I was born a few weeks before him (again, figuratively, otherwise I'd be just over 900 years old. Yes, yes. Shut your face, you), I remember Dalekmania, and -- ye gods -- I even remember William Hartnell "dying" and then unexpectedly transforming into Patrick Troughton, thereby undermining my infant understanding of the finality of death for some years afterwards.

I learned the phrase "ye gods" from Jon Pertwee.

Okay. All right. "Like" may be an understatement. Anyway, where was I? Oh, yes. Paul McGann played the eighth Doctor, and he played him brilliantly, but only once for television. This was the ill-fated 1996 TV movie, a co-production between the BBC and Fox, marking the Doctor's first appearance since the programme was put on a very permanent sort of hiatus in 1989. This one-off was a pilot for a series that never happened, and it had many positive features. The cast was good, the direction was good, the dialogue was good, the TARDIS sets were the best ever, the special effects were not bad at all for '96, and the plot... Well, there had to be something wrong. I don't watch the story very often, purely because of the aching vacuum where the plot is supposed to be. It hurts slightly to be exposed to it. McGann's Doctor bubbles with a boyish enthusiasm, Eric Roberts as the Master chews the scenery like a good 'un, and it's all for naught, because all the bubbling and chewing between here and Gallifrey cannot hide the moths and technobabble at the movie's fibrillating heart. It is an absolute crying shame. The one plus in all this is that, if Fox had picked up the series, they would very probably screwed it up and then cancelled it, because that's what Fox does.

But McGann was excellent, and it is one of those irritations of life that we never saw him as the Doctor again. He has revisited the role on audio in Big Finish productions, but that's not quite the same. We never saw him stride across alien meadows, all frock coat and Byronic curls (it was a wig, but never mind), we never saw him face down the Daleks, or ruin a Cyberman's day. My daughter saw the movie when she was eight, and said she preferred him vastly to either Christopher Eccleston or David Tennant, although she liked them too. On the strength of one appearance, the eighth Doctor is "her" Doctor, and that is not a bad choice at all.

So, to recap, there I am walking down the hill, and I walk past Paul McGann. We glance briefly at one another, I recognise him but keep my double take down to a widening of the eyes, which I suspect he notices. I further suspect that he is thinking something along the lines of, "Oh, shit." I'm not sure, because my critical and observational faculties are temporarily off-line due to my inner fanboy running amok. My thought processes have dumped all the stuff about pipes and cardigans and red setters, and are rattling off, "OMG! OMG! OMFG!"

It only lasted for a moment before I wrested back control, but I have an ugly feeling that for those couple of seconds of inner turmoil, I looked like Edgar the cockroach man from "Men in Black," gurning madly with internal conflict. Mature me, however, rallied the carpet slippers and did the sensible thing, which was to keep walking and not bother the man who was, after all, just minding his own business. I didn't tell him how much I like his work, or what a terrific Doctor he made, or ask for his autograph. I was very, very grown up about the whole thing, which has depressed me slightly. I wish I had been a little more uncool. For one thing, Maddy would have been beside herself with glee if I'd got his autograph for her. But for another, I wonder if I'm losing touch with my inner geek a little, the aspect of my personality that has furnished me with so many hours of joy and amusement in my life, while never passing up a chance for social incompetence and the ensuing humiliation. Well, perhaps I could have lived without the latter stuff, but you know what I mean. And, if you don't, what are you doing reading this in the first place?
_________________
"Listen carefully. This is the secret of how to live: fire your gun before somebody else does." ~ Scribble, Vurt
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