Monday, 30 September 2013

I received an exciting email yesterday - this blog's been shortlisted for the Blog North Best Young Blogger Award. Which is kind of cool.

That is good, isn't it? When my department try to give me a lecture on blogging next week, I'm gonna slap this in their face and eat a biscuit triumphantly.

The judging is part-vote, part-panel, so please do feel free to go here and vote 'This is good, isn't it?' for 'Best Young Blogger' if voting in things is the kind of activity you like to do, please and thank you.

If you're reading this and you're one of the judges, then hi there. I really like your hair today. You know, you're my favourite of all the judges (in all the competitions ever).

And so, in an attempt to make my blog look good, I've created one of the most vacuous, self-serving articles in its history. Oops. Erm... I know what would really bring in the votes! More pictures of David Morrissey!

You agree with me that he's one of the finest British actors of his generation, don't you, my good judge? Nice to know I'm on the same page as someone with your impressive intellect.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Apologies for the lack of blog posts recently - I've been cheating on this site, mainly with Starburst magazine. I really should recommend that you go out and buy the mag (my writing's in it!), but for you cheapskates (or, sadly, anyone living in the twenty-first century), here are some recent reviews I've done in immediately accessible, free to read, paperless internet format:

Not really made of ice, but he is made of Michael Shannon.

With an imposing physicality and an intense, brooding quality, Shannon inhabits the role of Kuklinski masterfully. He channels an intense anger, making the hitman someone who’d be scary to be around, yet he also makes us feel that he truly cares for his family.

Neil Jordan's return to the vampire genre on DVD.

Despite the flaws, there’s a lot to admire in Byzantium. It’s more for fans of Let the Right One In than Twilight; though lacking the chill of the iconic Swedish film, it’s the dark, character-driven, social commentary-ridden type of vampire tale. While it doesn’t hit all the marks, it’s definitely worth a shot. 

The Doctor Who book, not the Richard Curtis film.

In a world with more Doctor Who guidebooks than actual episodes (probably), About Time won’t appeal to everybody, but it’s a remarkably intelligent and ambitious project, and if you know your Who, you’ll love it.

Another day, another Doctor Who tie-in book.

It tries to be two very different books that don’t really fit together. While the in-universe sections offer nothing new, the behind-the-scenes material is considerably more engaging. The book looks pretty and has an impressive array of contributors, but, though a nice coffee table book, “the ultimate guide” it is not – there are better choices out there.

A classic Jack Katz comic collected for the first time.

An admirable presentation of an ambitious and personal, if not unflawed, gem from comic book history, The Birth of Tundran is a worthy addition to any collector’s bookshelf.

Anyway, I'm going into my third and final year of university now, so... yeah... that's worrying. Real life awaits.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

On 11.9.13 by KieronMoore in , , , ,    1 comment
So, I haven’t blogged about Doctor Who in a while. For any other show, this would be acceptable, as Doctor Who is, you know, not currently on telly, but it’s the fiftieth anniversary year and there’ve been some pretty big news stories. If the major newspapers put Who on the front cover, I should probably get off my metaphorical ass and spout some opinions. So, what’s been going on in the Whoniverse?

Well, the publicity’s really ramping up for the fiftieth anniversary special. And by ramping up, I mean chaotically fucking up. The BBC announced a load of details, realised they'd made that announcement by accident, took ages to take it down, then pretended it never happened, and later put it back up with a new poster. Come on, guys. You’re making yourselves look stupid. While it's great that Who gets so much publicity, surely they could have just pretended it’s what they meant to do?

That callback to Series-7B-Blu-ray-gate aside, what is it we’ve actually learnt? Well, the special, to be broadcast on 23rd November, conveniently a Saturday, will be 75 minutes long and titled The Day of the Doctor. 75 minutes sounds like a fine length – it’ll match The End of Time Part Two in the race for the longest New Who episode. Which sounds like an achievement, until you remember that The End of Time had a Part One, and that the twentieth anniversary special The Five Doctors did get 90 minutes. Still, pacing was much, much slower back then. I just hope the special packs a lot of story in while not feeling as rushed as some of Steven Moffat’s recent episodes.

The title is… well, it’s what we could expect really. Doctor-centric, doesn’t say much about the episode, pretty unambitious. Day of the Doc-meh. Oh, well. A naff title doesn’t mean a naff episode. I can keep my spirits high, as long as they don’t go and release a naff poster.


Is it me, or do the Tenth and Eleventh Doctors both look exactly the fucking same? Their hairstyles are turning into each other's. Their suits are lit to look identical. They have the same expression of morbid seriousness. What happened to each Doctor being distinct and interesting? Matt’s hair has been gradually becoming more styled and less manic since series five, and his clothes have become more bland and less mad professor. This poster marks the utter apotheosis of his descent into losing that sense of individuality, him turning from the Eleventh Doctor into the Generic Doctor.

After these disappointments, I really hope the episode can still be the great celebration of the series which fans want it to be. Come on Moffat, pull this one out of the bag.

Still, even if it does turn out to be naff, there’s always Capaldi.

Yep, this Christmas, Matt Smith will be handing over the TARDIS keys to the Twelfth Doctor, The Thick of It star Peter Capaldi, as announced in a mind-numbingly tedious half hour live show. Really, the first twenty-five minutes of that half hour were so banal – “so, Peter Davison, you were the Doctor once, is that right? I bet no-one’s asked you that before.”

And then Capaldi came out, tugging his lapels in Hartnell homage and bringing smiles to the faces of all but those obsessive Aneurin Barnard fangirls (I say that, but truthfully, I probably would). I haven’t actually expressed my opinion on the new Doctor on here yet, so here it is. Yes, I would like a female Doctor at some point, or a black Doctor – Doctor Who is all about trying new things, moving forward, and providing good role models, and why the Doctor's character would be irrevocably destroyed by any such change is beyond me. Gallifreyan culture is meant to be more advanced than ours, so would hopefully have perfect equality, and what better way to symbolise that than by making the Doctor female and it not really mattering in terms of who the Doctor is? What's that you say? The Doctor's always been male? Well, until 1966, the Doctor had always been William Hartnell, and until 1987, he'd always had a southern English accent. No excuse. Trying new things, moving forward, change (my dear, and not a moment too soon). On the other hand, considering the characterisation of Clara Oswald and River Song, maybe Steven Moffat isn’t the right showrunner for the first female Doc…

No, the two conditions I absolutely wanted for Moffat's next Doctor were: someone different to Matt Smith in some major way; a talented actor. That first one: not because I don’t like Matt Smith, I just couldn’t stand for the show to be more of the same. Again, trying new things is cool. And, by casting an older actor (by the time of his first episode, he’ll be the oldest ever to take on the role) that tradition is carrying on. And, yes, Capaldi is a very talented actor, very funny, and very good at powerful drama too (check out his heartbreaking performance in Torchwood: Children of Earth, by far the best that sometimes-very-very-dodgy spin-off ever got). Plus, he’s a fan, which always helps. He’ll make the role his own, and we’ll even forget the days when everyone was making Malcolm Tucker/Who jokes. They are funny, though. I’ll end this blog with the funniest one I’ve seen going around the internet:

Do you know what they call me in the ancient legends of the Dalek homeworld? The Oncoming Fucking Shitstorm.

Ha, ha, ha. Comedy gold.