31 July 2015

Lack of Six Appeal

"They don't like any of them?"
After Colin Baker’s DWM interview and Twitter `meltdown` isn’t it time he accepted that his period as the Doctor just wasn’t very good?
In an interview in the current edition of DWM Colin Baker seems particularly sensitive about the low position some of his stories occupy in polls and of DWM’s continued use of such surveys. He describes “favourite” as a word he particularly dislikes.  He does this during a (generously) long interview promoting the latest Big Finish release. Not that Big Finish is actually official Doctor Who or anything. After it was published he took to Twitter to moan about the interview. People called it a `meltdown` though it was hardly different to the griping he’s undertaken on a number of platforms and at conventions for years.. Nobody likes to be criticised of course but if his stories regularly topped these polls I’m sure he wouldn’t be making such a fuss about it. And, lest we forget, this is a man who entered I’m A Celebrity- Get Me Out of Here, whose contestants are regularly sent home based on people’s votes.

Thirty odd years of criticism is bound to hurt but has he ever actually watched the stories he did? Surely he cannot really believe that, whatever their qualities, they are as good as the series’ classics? It is of course not entirely his fault. He didn’t write the scripts or direct them or design his costume and it is the people that did who are the ones who deserve criticism. It is their work that is largely being judged when fans vote in these polls. However the idea that his Doctor would start off unlikeable and mellow is something he credits himself with and it would be ok for a novel but for an ongoing family tv series it would never work. Why no-one was able to talk him out of such a concept is not known, He was unlucky though to join the show when it was unpopular with the BBC executives and no other Doctor has had such a high proportion of poor stories. 
In which case wouldn’t it be better if his response to all that, especially as it’s so long ago, would be to make some jokey acknowledgment of it and say something like`Yeah, my stories were mostly crap and my costume was a joke but I did my best.`
DWM editor Tom Spilsbury has been generously diplomatic in his public handling of the matter though it might have been an oversight to include the results of a season poll in the same issue as Baker repeatedly criticises polls. Perhaps the actor has been spoiled by recent years in which his performances in the Big Finish adventures has been roundly praised. They may indeed be good but neither I nor the public would know about that and most people who even give it a thought will continue to judge his Doctor solely on his screened BBC adventures. 

And now...
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