Rate The Vampires of Venice

Marks out of ten.

10
15
10%
9
25
16%
8
36
23%
7
36
23%
6
20
13%
5
11
7%
4
7
4%
3
3
2%
2
0
No votes
1
3
2%
 
Total votes: 156
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tony ingram
 
 
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Robert Watkins wrote:As Ianj has said, it's made for the kiddies and not for adults - it's time to accept this show is never going to be Lost, Fringe or anything better aimed at that type of audience.
I've never seen Fringe, but I thought Lost was aimed at the terminally bored.
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tony ingram wrote:
Robert Watkins wrote:As Ianj has said, it's made for the kiddies and not for adults - it's time to accept this show is never going to be Lost, Fringe or anything better aimed at that type of audience.
I've never seen Fringe, but I thought Lost was aimed at the terminally bored.
Lost is one of the most rewarding well plotted well charectarised shows ever.
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chasersbass
 
 
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8/10

I thought it looked like a movie, excellent camera work, lighting and direction - especially on the scenes in the dark or over water.
Decent enough storyline if not very engaging, but well realised. I liked the comedy lines
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An excellent episode that felt like old dr who, the best of the season.
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DaReverendMrMagister
 
 
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Re: The sonic screwdriver

The Doctor did say that bolts had been drawn to lock the door and I think it's been well established since Pertwee that the screwdriver is no good for opening them.

I really don't like how the screwdriver is like a tricorder now. I'd rather he had more than one piece of equipment in his pockets for different tasks.
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Nobbend
 
 
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It's clrearly not the same Sonic Screwdriver from the Pertwee era. This one has the ability to act like an electromagnet, make mediacl diagnoses and cure fish monster neck bites

My last car didn't have infra red parking sensors. My current one does.
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Shaving Foamasi
 
 
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8/10

I think Matt Smith just gets better every week. He does the comedy so much better than his immediate gurning predecessors. When he is on screen, he dominates like any great Doctor should.

I like Rory - heroic enough to defend Amy, angry at the Doctor and struggling to come to terms with the madness that has suddenly sprung up all around him. Like Mickey but less annoying...

I found the story a bit of a Dr Who cliché but entertaining nonetheless. I couldn't really see the only female of a dying species committing suicide just to make a point to the Doctor about how lonely and guilty he must feel. Mind you, it also highlights the madness that RTD intrdouced of making the Doctor the last fo his species. I also couldn't understand why the Doctor would just close the TARDIS door when he "heard" the silence.

Next week's episode looks great though in a Celestial Toymaker. Mind Robber kind of way...
You mean you believed the Doctor would never regenerate into a woman?
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Rob Ocelot
 
 
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Some are poo-pooing the fact that the vampires are proven to be aliens but IMO this is more fitting with Doctor Who of old. My reading of the scene where he's surrounded by the girls is that he's already figured out that they aren't a) Great Vampires or b) Haemovores so he's delighted that they are something new. The fact that they are *not* one of these two races (or a completely new race of vampires) makes my enjoyment of the story that much greater.

The quick explanation of how/why the perception filters work (and don't work in the case of the fangs suddenly appearing) was cute -- a bit talky but it worked. Some also have complained about the people in Venice not reacting to the TARDIS and the strange clothes of her crew and all I have to say is that you expect all kinds in cosmopolitan cities :-). There's also the fact that the 'mother' vampire seemed to be using a wide reaching perception filter which probably contributed to the 'whatever-it-is, it's-nothing-to-get-upset-about' reaction of the city people. Looks like the TARDIS and crew just got caught in the illusion.

Anyone else noticing that this incarnation of the Doctor seems to be more in tune with psychic phenomena like perception filters than previous Doctors?

also LOL at the library card scene. Did the name on the card read 'John Smith' or was I imagining that?
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tony ingram
 
 
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You weren't imaging it. The library card read 'Dr John Smith, 76 Totters Lane, Shoreditch, London'.
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Anyone here familiar with Alan Moore's Swamp Thing story from #37 of that title? Vampires of Venice definitly had echoes to that terrific slice of Horror.
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LizR
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DaReverendMrMagister wrote:The Doctor did say that bolts had been drawn to lock the door and I think it's been well established since Pertwee that the screwdriver is no good for opening them.
Apparently it "doesn't do wood". I forgot that.
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Pure slice of Hammer WHO;)

You know what's going to happen but that's not the point.

The point is how much fun and how interesting was the journey to get to that foregone conclusion.

And for me, it was great fun:)

8/10
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Oh Tom. You and your double entendres.
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LizR
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A few more observations on VOV...

It seems a little strange that these aliens have the ability to turn creatures from a planet they've only just arrived on (i.e. humans) into their own species, which is surely a huge feat of biological engineering, yet they don't have the ability to do something I would expect to be far easier, i.e. producing a few females of their own species by parthenogensis. Another small oddity is the fact that, apparently, they can only change attracitive young female humans into lady fish (a plot reminiscent of "Mars Needs Women", perhaps?)

Also, despite recognising the Doctor as a member of a highly advanced species, the lead alien prefers to commit suicide rather than take the chance that he might decide to help her after all.

And her stormbringing machine has a nice convenient "off" switch...

All the above (and many other points) could have been addressed if they weren't restricting themselves to a 42 minute episode format, which IMHO is a ridiculously short time to introduce a foreign / alien culture, introduce a few new characters, discover some problem that needs solving, and solve it. It's barely enough time for a programme in which it can be assumed that the audience is familiar with most of the background - "New Tricks", for example, runs for 60 minutes, and generally manages to turn out a good story. "The Eleventh Hour" felt much more the right length.
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tony ingram
 
 
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I've been saying this for years-45 minutes is generally just not long enough to tell a proper Doctor Who story. Ideally, I'd like the majority to be 2 parters as I still thing 90 minutes is the perfect length, but an hour would be a good compromise. Sod foreign sales, the needs of the story should come first.
dcampbell

45 minutes is long enough when the writers write to the format. Some stories have fitted this length beautifully - just not enough of them. I thought Vampires in Venice was one of the better ones in this regard, certainly when compared with Victory of the Daleks.

I definitely agree there should be more two-part stories, but if there is a problem with the 45-minute episode format it is that you can only do stories in multiples of 45, which is (pretty much by definition) less flexible than being able to do 2, 3, 4, etc. episodes at 25 minutes each.

But if Terry Nation and Chris Boucher could put together 13 x 45-minute episodes of Blakes 7 in 1978, I don't see why it is so difficult for modern writers (and the rest of the production team involved, of course) to fit their stories to the time available.
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tony ingram
 
 
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dcampbell wrote:45 minutes is long enough when the writers write to the format. Some stories have fitted this length beautifully - just not enough of them. I thought Vampires in Venice was one of the better ones in this regard, certainly when compared with Victory of the Daleks.

I definitely agree there should be more two-part stories, but if there is a problem with the 45-minute episode format it is that you can only do stories in multiples of 45, which is (pretty much by definition) less flexible than being able to do 2, 3, 4, etc. episodes at 25 minutes each.

But if Terry Nation and Chris Boucher could put together 13 x 45-minute episodes of Blakes 7 in 1978, I don't see why it is so difficult for modern writers (and the rest of the production team involved, of course) to fit their stories to the time available.
Well, two 45 minute episodes is actually equivalent to an old four parter once you've removed the extra credits sequences and reprises (90 minutes approx), and I always felt that the four parter was generally the best length for Who. Blake's 7 was different in that it was all set in one consistent 'world', the same basic set-up every week; unlike Who, you didn't need extra time to set up a whole new world for the characters to land up in every week, the audience knew the basic set-up (the Federation control the galaxy) already.
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Ovarall I enjoyed that. Great concept (if not anything we hadn't seen before), but sloppy execution.

The first mistake they made was having the Doctor know he was taking the stupid apes to Venice (and huzzah for actually making it to Italy this time instead of ending up in Wales again), but not bothering to put them, or himself for that matter, in clothing that would blend in. In Amy's case, make that clothing that wouldn't get her arrested. Much as I enjoy looking at that her legs, particularly in stockings like that, it simply wasn't appropriate and the Doctor should have been aware of that. I don't care how much psychic paper you flash, it's going to cause trouble. Imagine if Barack Obama showed up in London accompanied by a naked dancing girl he introduced as his friend the Senator. Or if you prefer Hillary Clinton showing up with a naked dancing boy. Yeah, they've got diplomatic immunity but it's still going to create a massive stir and trigger all sorts of inconvenience, particularly when the naked person isn't with the important diplomat.

The second was a character issue -- even before he found out the aliens could only survive by converting humans into their own species, he never even tried to negotiate a deal. "Leave the humans alone and I'll help you colonize somewhere else." Or even "leave the humans alone and colonize the seas, that'll give you more than 2/3 of the planet to work with while they get the land."

The third is related to that -- why did the aliens need to sink Venice anyway? Why couldn't they just build a city from scratch? It's not like 16th century Venice can supply their technological needs, so why bother dunking the city to begin with?

The sloppiest thing though was the sunlight issue. They were totally inconsistent about how much it bothered the fish people, with their resistance going up and down throughout the episode based on convenience to the plot rather than having the plot work around a consistent premise. The writer and director couldn't be bothered to work within the rules they established and kept on changing things back and forth. It stretched my suspension of disbelief past the breaking point.

The fish-mommy's striptease was also sloppy -- her dress was part of the projected illusion, it shouldn't have been necessary to remove the outfit physically because it didn't actually exist.

Also, it would have been nice to deal with the psychology of the women who were turned into fish people a bit more, deal with why they so completely embraced their new existence instead of resenting what was done to them. "Humanity is a fading dream" is a bit vague, too much handwaving, I think. They should have added a few lines about mental conditioning or something.

Still, we got out of the British isles, got a look at Earth's past, saw the Doctor trying to avoid the entanglement of an interspecies romance, actually saw him fix the problem, and got a genuinely new dynamic aboard the TARDIS -- the Doctor and a couple traveling together (Mickey was pretty clearly an ex by the time "School Reunion" rolled around). The psychic paper crutch finally bit the Doctor on the ass. And we got a sympathetic antagonist -- one who wasn't out for galactic conquest or the extermination or enslavement of other sentient species, but one just trying to keep her race alive.

If it hadn't been so sloppy I'd have given it a 10. Half-way through I was still planning on a 9. In the end I gave it a 7 -- worthwhile, and an episode I expect to watch and enjoy again, but not the classic it could have been with a bit more care.
"You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time." Abraham Lincoln (attributed)
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Ssorg
 
 
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It wasss not filmed in Italy by the way.
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I meant the fictional TARDIS making it to fictional Italy, contrasting with the Eccy-thump story where the Doctor promised Rose Naples and gave her Cardiff. Location filming's great when they can manage it but not really a priority for me. I care more about script and acting than sets.
"You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time." Abraham Lincoln (attributed)
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Solon
 
 
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This was a really great episode. Funny, scary and fast paced. Next week's looks good as well.

9/10.
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