Wednesday, January 6, 2010

5R2 - Full Circle 2

Okay, there's no point in delaying this any further. What John Nathan-Turner saw in Matthew Waterhouse to think that he could, as a teenager in only his second ever acting job, become a new companion (and, within a couple stories from this, the senior companion) is beyond me. As a kid, I loved Adric. But I was a kid. And so was Waterhouse at the time. Maybe that's why I enjoyed the character so much, because he was me, as a wide-eyed, awkward child given free reign of the TARDIS.

It's immediately apparent that there is zero chemistry between Waterhouse and the two established leads, Tom Baker and Lalla Ward. The only question regarding the relationship between the three of them is who hated Waterhouse more - Baker or Ward. Based on some early scenes in this episode, the tiebreaker goes to Ward. She barely looks at Waterhouse in their scenes together in the TARDIS, and when she does, her face is filled with contempt. Coupled with the fact that Baker and Ward were in the midst of a love-hate relationship at this time, too, the TARDIS must have been a super happy place to be.

Part of Waterhouse's failure is the fact that he's clad in pajamas in this story, that, barring the odd temporary costume change, was a look he would sport throughout his entire tenure on the program. Even Tom Baker failed to escape the magic wand of sameness that John Nathan-Turner had cast over the costume department (discarding his new hat and reinstating his favourite buccaneer boots were Tom Baker's most successful signs of rebellion after years of having carte blanche around the Doctor Who set). Lalla Ward's continued flourish for realistically changing outfits every story was clearly grandfathered in. Notice, though, how there's no closet in her room...


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