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I just caught a few seconds of 'Dreamland', the new Doctor Who animated series. I'm a bit behind the times in Who land, but I'd heard buzz of this for a while and was quite excited by the pictures I saw.

C'mon, that looks awesome! Of course I was excited!

Now, is it just me or is the BBC constantly (okay, twice) doing itself a massive disservice by allowing these 'studios' to have at their flagship show? The whole essence of David Tennant (or indeed most of the Doctors) is that he's eccentric. He's nuts. He's bouncy and bonkers and full of life and that's everything Dreamland, and their other stab at animation, 'The Infinite Quest, lacks.

I was very excited by The Infinite Quest when it first aired. It looked, nice when the characters weren't moving. It would have made a beautiful comic, if one void entirely of action and drama. It had a bit of promise, I suppose. But it fell flat, and not just because it looked like an Newgrounds flash project (this isn't actually a dig at flash animation - have you seen some of the things these people can do?)

Dreamland should have been, and could have been, brilliant. David Tennant is expressive. He's practically already an animated character. Even his voice has bounce and charisma to it.

So, to watch his words spoken by a lifeless figure that looks about as on model as a Second Life creation and animated with all the finesse of Poser is absolutely distracting. The scene I randomly clicked to was one in which he was being intimidated by what I can only assume to be a renegade MiB agent, and his face was emotionless and dead as he warned his companions to not antagonise him. His voice conveyed the emotion and dynamicism we've come to associate with Ten, but his mouth was the only thing on the screen that moved. His eyes didn't even widen. I'm sorry, but David Tennant's eyes widen when he's playing the Doctor. David Tennan'ts role is essentially that of a man put in the universe in order to make funny faces. If it had been the Tenth Doctor in 'Rose' instead of the Ninth, his line would have been; 'I can feel it. The gurning of the Earth.'

It's bloody telling, I suppose, that when I googled 'BBC animation', a Wikipedia page on suspended animation was one of the first results. I'll be honest with you, I can kind of see where they're coming from.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 24th, 2009 04:36 pm (UTC)
Oh my god seeing this abortion in motion made my eyes bleed. I mean it looks like a damned first-gen PSOne game.
Nov. 24th, 2009 04:44 pm (UTC)
Yeeeahhh that pretty much looks decent when it's not moving, haha.
Nov. 24th, 2009 05:17 pm (UTC)
Yeah, didn't even bother watching, the screenshot itself makes me want to cry.
Nov. 24th, 2009 05:27 pm (UTC)
Never mind Flash, look at the crazy shit they can do in 8-bit these days http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egcXvqiho4w
Nov. 24th, 2009 05:29 pm (UTC)
actually on second thoughts, don't watch that, it's too disturbing
Nov. 24th, 2009 05:50 pm (UTC)

God that was the worst but so, so well done. Aahaha.
Nov. 24th, 2009 06:38 pm (UTC)
I cringe any time anyone moves. :/
Nov. 24th, 2009 07:31 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I do wonder what the heck my licence fee is actually paying for sometimes. Their flagship Saturday night programme for four years and yet this year we get four "special" episodes (which weren't special in any sense of the word) and a crappy minimum-effort animation. Grr.
Nov. 26th, 2009 10:57 am (UTC)
It's paying for massive executive salaries, expense accounts and excessive "hospitality"
Nov. 24th, 2009 08:34 pm (UTC)
I don't know why they do it. They did the same thing when they animated two episodes of the Second Doctor. They did a great job with the faces and set, but the characters barely moved. There was no energy and I think the second and the tenth doctors had the most energy.

Damn shame. They should get the looney toon company to do it or something.
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 24th, 2009 10:06 pm (UTC)
Reboot was the shit.

Also, is Bath okay for Sat? DC can't make it and Bath's easier for me to get to :P (I'm too cheap to text back :P)
Nov. 24th, 2009 10:33 pm (UTC)
That's the same engine that Borderlands works on, so it's basically supposed to look really damn pretty, but the facial motion isn't that great. Basically: if they wanted to do it this way they should have used the Borderlands base graphics engine with something like the Resident Evil 5 facial system XD
Nov. 26th, 2009 10:47 pm (UTC)
oooh. huh, where did you find out about the Borderlands engine? I didn't know that (and can't find any info about it).
Nov. 27th, 2009 12:05 am (UTC)
Hahaha, it's just something I picked up on. Borderlands has a really, really distinct graphics engine with that style, so to see it on Who was like "oh... wow :o"

Nov. 27th, 2009 07:16 pm (UTC)
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )