Saturday, December 5, 2009

8th Doctor - The Girl Who Never Was (ii)

Book(s)/Other Related –
Doctor Who And The Girl Who Never Left
Doctor Who And The Girl Who Stole The Stars
Doctor Who And The Girl In The Fireplace With The Loose Connection
Doctor Who Discovers Rust Never Sleeps
Dr Who Ditches The Squares (Canada Only)
Charley Pollard: Die or Bye?
The Verkoff Files: "See The Bermuda Triangle From MY Angle!"

Fluffs – Paul McGann seemed to be in denial for most of this story.
The Cyber-Director sounds like Alvin and the Chipmunks while Nigel sounds like Barry McKenzie.

Goofs –
Lucie Miller is introduced in this story.

The Girl Who Never Was A Virgin also gives a rather brain-damaged explanation for how Nigel Verkoff has appeared in numerous stories in the first century of Big Finish: he has a time machine. Built by his neighbor. Out of a portable toilet, a car battery and a strange non-determism warp drive. This is SO impossible that you could skip the other five things and head straight for Milliways!

Despite all the accolades she gets, Charley is shithouse miming playing the flute. The other things she mimes using the flute for, however, I will refrain from commenting on.

I don’t want to look too closely at the time loop paradox business with the R103, but I note it just in case there IS a flaw in it and you CAN spot it without your cerebral cortex turning to cold porridge trying to understand it.

The front cover gives away the episode two cliffhanger, and the cast list on the back gives away the episode one cliffhanger. If I actually listened to these things for fun, I’d be really annoyed!

At one point, Charley is apparently studying another pregnancy test asking the Doctor whether it should be blue or pink, and the Doctor snatches it out of her hands shouting "Oh yes, VERY amusing!" This scene is never referred to ever again.

Fashion Triumphs -
Lucie’s 'slut-bag hussy' outfit that Anna Nicole Smith would have thought tacky, consisting of a slinky denim miniskirt, cowboy boots and what appears at first glance to be a neon purple low-cut blouse but is actually just body paint. Daddy like.

Technobabble -
"This isn’t a grand piano, Charley, it’s a pro-pae-deu-tic-cy-no-sur-al-mod-ul-at-ah-fuck!"

Links and References -
The Doctor and Charley bitch and brag respectively about pretty much every possible story they’ve ever been in, from Sick Morning onwards.

During part three, Charley has her own solo adventure with Nigel and the Seventh Doctor, as chronicled in Fly Charley to the Moon!

Charley jokingly suggests the Marie Celeste was invaded by the Dustbins, and she’s surprised when the Doctor confirms that it was them and that the crew were tidied away after they laughed themselves to death at the sight of the motorized litter bins (The Chaste).

Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor and Charley last encountered the Chinese Detective while fighting the Mo’ Lovin’ Network on tropical paradise planet of Kantria.

Groovy DVD Extras -
The first scene of "Contempt of Charley", the first story of the brand new 'Charley’s Odyssey' spin off series! Sarah Jane eat your heart out!

Dialogue Disasters –

Charley: Doctor, we need one last shag.
Doctor: We’ve shagged enough, Charley!

Doctor: Handcuffs please! No, Charley, in my other pocket.
Charley: Oh, here they are!
Doctor: Put them on nice and tight!
Nigel: ...kinky...

Charley: What do you want with us?
Cyberman: Your bodies are needed!
Nigel: At least I’m safe...
Cyberman: Cybermen do not discriminate by gender.
Nigel: Oh fuck.
Cyberman: Indeed.

Nigel: I’m Nigel Verkoff.
Charley: Nigel Verkoff Something or Something Nigel Verkoff?
Nigel: Er... just Nigel Verkoff.
Doctor: Charley? Who the hell is this?
Nigel: Nigel Verkoff.
Doctor: Nigel Verkoff Something or Something Nigel Verkoff?
Nigel: What the hell IS it with you people?!

The Cyber-Director muses on its feelings for Charley:

Charley: I’m sodden!
Nigel: Strip off if you like. Simons can get you some new clothes.
Charley: Don’t rush, Simons...
"Simons": Perhaps you should strip too, sir. Like Miss Pollard.
Captain: Dear God, do I have to put bromide in the grog! It’s as bad as when we had that Touchwood staff outing – what a horrible misunderstanding THAT expression turned out to be!

Dialogue Triumphs -

Doctor: Charley? Are you there? Charley?
Charley: Doctor, is that you?
Doctor: Yes. Give me a hand, "Simons".
"Simons": There is no Simons here! My name is Charlotte Pollard.
Charley: I beg your pardon!
Doctor: Oh no, I’ve managed to give her YOUR personality!
"Simons": Ahh! This is what I’ve always dreamed of. Oh! To feel the fullness of the strength that’s flowing into my mind. I’m launched upon a torrent which is sweeping me away. And the torrent is Charlotte Pollard! The long celibacy is over and I am the victor! Nothing can stand in my way! Sexual liberation is mine! I will be the leader of us all, the monarch that all shall obey. The great queen of the galaxy itself at last! At last! And greater still, Charlotte Pollard, Dominatrix of the Universe. Oh boy! Then the peoples of the cosmos shall bow before me, the planets worship me! The stars themselves will lie beneath my feet, and all the voices of creation shall cry my name in triumph: Charley! CHARLEY! CHARLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE...
(She falls over. The Doctor turns to Charley)
Doctor: You really don’t lack self-confidence, do you?

Doctor: Mistress Pollard, Cybermen are the ULTIMATE leather freaks. Everything inefficient has been replaced, stripped out and cut away, including their feelings of pain. They’re hollowed-out nothings and their only imperative is to redefine sexual pleasure and sadistic pain.
Pollard: Really? Well, two can play at THAT game!
Doctor: Maybe you really ARE Charley after all...

Nigel: Do you have any double?
Barmaid: No, only singles I’m afraid.
Nigel: You wanna... snuggle up?
Barmaid: Certainly sir. But that will be at the double rate.
Nigel: ... forget it.

Doctor: Life is like a river, ever flowing, but every river must eventually reach the sea. The wheel of karma turns through many lifetimes until nirvana is achieved. We cannot escape suffering in any way other than spiritual enlightenment.
Charley: And that means...?
Doctor: I’m over you. Piss off.

Quiet, mate, I’m enjoying the view.

UnQuotable Quote -

Cyberman: Foreplay is for the weak!

Viewer Quotes -

"I often wondered if there could possibly be a worse companion than Charley and C’Rizz. A chronically depressed tree frog, maybe? Now I know such a thing exists. Sheridan Smith."
– Not me. Hell no. No siree. Coz that would be libel. And we don’t want that, do we? (3000)

"I was hoping for the Dustbins so that Charley could pose naked with one. Come to think of it, I can’t BELIEVE she’s had two stories with Dustbins and not once done the full Katy Manning! Still, that aside this was a great story. I don't think it would look out of place on telly for the Tenth Doctor and Martha. NO! RTD, NO! Before you get any ideas! NO!" – Dave Restal (2006)

"Well that was amazing. Absolutely amazing, and the ending was a true classic Doctor Who moment. Somehow, the idea of Charley being dead and the Doctor never knowing was even worse than the idea of her dying in her arms. The suddenness of the "death", and the way in which McGann delivered his final line - I'm not sure I've ever been more moved by Doctor Who. Reminded me of Tom Stoppard's Arcadia at several times, which is no bad thing at all. Pretty much anything like Arcadia gets a thumbs up from me." – Mr. Drunk (2009)

"Lucie's introduction scene was beyond feeble, an awful lead-in to an awful character, doing Paul McGann a huge disservice, and now the audios have to defer to BBC Wales because those morons CLAIM to know The Way Doctor Who Works, just without anything intelligence, mature, underplayed or funny. I HATE RTD AND WANT HIM DEAD!"
- Not Me Either (3003)

"So, Charley’s leaving, huh, Raph? Sorry, bro. I’ll miss her, she was really cool... Aw, man, lighten up. You know what they say, that if you love something, set it free, cuz if it loves you it’ll come back... something like that. And besides, y’know – better to have lost at love, than never to have loved at all, right?"
"Shut up, Mike."
– Michelangelo & Raphael, Ninja Turtles who fancy India Fisher (1995)

"The Girl Who Never Was A Virgin? Isn’t that Jordan?"
– Normal Person (2009)

"I am surprised Polly didn’t turn up instead of Lucie. How can ANYONE like that annoying woman? I listened to the first 5 seconds of her appearance and couldn't stand her. And as I’ve obviously made a well-informed open-minded decision, who are you to argue with me on my opinion? Huh? Had enough, Nazi, or do you want some more?!"
– Gillane Seaborne (2007)

Psychotic Nostalgia -
"I can't articulate the almost physical pain I'm in, just hearing this story as Charley does the Cyberleader doggy-style. It’s so, so wrong yet... oh so RIGHT!"

Paul McGann Speaks!
"India gone... And Conrad gone... Gay Russell, he’s gone too... But me?

I’m back. This time, it’s personal.

Normally, I’m just selling yogurt and what have you, but from now on, I let rip! Fly at it! Plus I can stop and do it again if it’s rubbish and someone ELSE makes the tea! Over the few years we’ve doing these Big Finish capers, I’ve got slicker, honestly folks, and no complete and utter encyclopedic experts on Doctor Who and the history thereof are gonna stop me now! I’m enjoying the Doctor being a bit more in charge of his sexual relationships, actually. He’s a bit of a misfit, you know? All that ebullience and great sense of fun, it disguises something rather lonely inside. Which is why we’ve got a new, brash Northern Lass to ease that loneliness. Sweet, sweet candy!

I’m a grown up now, I’m in long trousers now, so now I’m at the helm of Big Finish, so hold on to your asses! The transition will be seamless, we’re getting MY kind of actors in, we’re going to have a hoot, fun but still funny. Me and Sheridan Smith – good times ahead. Proper actors too, not just 2D illusions as before. Course, the audios will still suck, but that’s your problem, anoraks. Like I care. I know nothing, I see nothing, and I collect nothing to do with Doctor Who merchandise if that’s what any of you sad-acts out there are thinking!

Course, the Teletubbies in the Underground always appealed to me when I was a child. But then I was a total geek back then. Forget I said anything. Don’t annoy the Doctor."

India Fisher Speaks!
"In a nutshell, she’s quite perky and gung-ho, she’s up for an adventure, not one to say 'no' to stuff and never fazed by things be they Dustbins or Cybermen. She’s the ultimate good time girl, and I like her a lot. She’s seen a lot of things, slept with even more, learned about life and learned the importance of contraceptives.

When I found out that Charley and the Eighth Doctor were splitting up, I was of course very sad and required lots of physical stimulation to prevent me falling into total despair. But part of me did accept that Paul needed to move on to a new bit of crumpet to freshen things up and get the feeling back into his legs again. These last two stories were surprisingly emotional for me, especially Conrad’s last story – the scene where C’Rizz dies involved no acting on my part to sound delighted, just some celebratory champagne nearby.

The eighth Doctor was also a major part of my life – very few jobs (acting or otherwise) span seven years and it felt odd to be sliding off it. That includes Sphincter for the Adept if any anoraks try to complain about my logic. My mood did brighten somewhat, though, when my army of adoring fan geeks ensured this wasn’t the end for Charley just yet! No matter what BBC7 says, no one is sick to the back-teeth of me! Bwahahahahahahaha!"

Nigel Verkoff Speaks!
"I love Charlotte Pollard and India Fisher. I’m in love with Charlotte Pollard and India Fisher. I’ve slept with Charlotte Pollard and India Fisher. Of course I have! Trouble is, I have to share her with another man. Yes, he wears a waistcoat, and yes, he’s got terrible hair, and yes, he’s got a time and space machine but he was in The Hanging Gale, and I can barely get on Crime Watch. I tried it on with her sister, but it wasn’t the same... And now, the time has come for it all to end, and the Big N was left but a witnesses to the ultimate sex goddess, a fertility symbol single-handedly responsible for the Asian over-population crises. Awesome... She shagged me, though, India Fisher. And Charlotte Pollard. Of course they did! How could they not?"

Sheridan Smith Speaks!
"Lucie’s a great character to play, she’s really kind of ballsy and feisty – some kind of sex change treatment gone horribly wrong, I suppose. The relationship between her and the Doctor grows and grows, and the scripts are so funny and dramatic and moving... well, not this one. Obviously. I mean, every morning I look forward to coming into the studio and doing someone, but me sitting on a chair in the TARDIS saying 'What?' over and over again was a pretty lame way to start, now I look back on it."

Eddie Hitler Speaks!
"Now, Paul McGann is a real gent. I’ve no idea why he was stupid enough to get caught in this, but I knew it must be a real bitch to get out of Doctor Who if Paul "I Am Not Canon" McGann can’t manage it. We hit it off right away, as we both prayed the production team would all have simultaneous heart attacks and drop dead, so we could laugh our arses off and head to the pub early.

Of course, ANYONE can curse Nick Briggs’ mother and father for conceiving the self-centred little megalomaniac bastard, not everyone DOES something about him - and Paul earned my undying respect when he ripped Briggs's eyeballs out through his nostrils and made Conrad eat them. While the paramedics cleared up the blood, he had a justifiably frustrated temper tantrum about the current state of Doctor Who:

"NO! NO! NO!" he screamed at Briggs. "I’ve had enough of this shit! Every fucking time you find the dullest and most pathetic audio script, you have to drag me into this dumbass excuse for entertainment! Even the fans think it sucks! Rubik’s Cube sucked, Clock Works sucked, every single damn release since Schizo sucked! WHAT MORE OF A HINT DO YOU NEED, YOU EMOTIONALLY STUNTED BASTARD?! I want a jailbait Northern blonde as a companion, 45 minute episodes and decent stories with even half-interesting monsters – NOT YOU, YOU DENSE GIT!"

Now, I was so impressed by that I agreed to retool the season entirely to get rid of his companions and set up a brand new series of adventures with the breathtakingly hot Sheridan Smith (who I’ve bedded on several separate occasions) as the jailbait Northern sex kitten of his dreams. Of course, India persuaded me to help write her out of the show using only some whipped cream and a ferret and I felt generous so I let Conrad escape first. Paul knew the fans would never let him go, but at least he could have some fun from now on.

That’s MY kind of Time Lord!"

Trivia -
Originally the Bastard, Vansell (from "Nowhere-Land"), the Tenth Doctor (from "Coleslaw Cutaway"), Wishbone (from "Sick Morning"), Nick Briggs (from "The Best Wife"), Edmund Darkbastard (from "Reasons to Care"), Serge the Seal, Rupert Nipplesqueeze (from "Other Lies") and Ali G (from "Rhyme of the Dustbins") were all to appear in this story, but unfortunately they were all far too busy taking some bottles to the recycling bank to actually appear.

Rumors & Facts -

Since Eddie Hitler had been made de facto script editor of the ongoing adventures of the Eighth Doctor, and he and Paul McGann quickly spent their time trying to break free of the festering chains of Big Finish. With Nicholas Briggs now in charge and so thoroughly pissed off at all its cast members he was firing them as fast as he could, the time seemed right to talk him into changing the very format of the stories.

Instead of the usual double-CD format of the other three Doctors, Hitler suggested a new strand of single-CD stories set later in the McGann era so they could finally be free of Charley and C’Rizz and also bring in a new companion people actually liked in a style of adventure that wasn’t firmly lodged up Justin Richard’s arse.

Having already decided to get rid of Conrad Westmaas and India Fisher, Briggs was more than prepared to ditch McGann as well – phasing out the Eighth Doctor from the main BF range was just another step on his long path to becoming a fully-fledged canonical Doctor!

It was then that BBC7, an internet radio broadcaster absolutely no one listened to because they weren’t prepared to waste bandwidth, decided that getting an exclusive Doctor Who story range would be one way to get noticed. Realizing they could get neither David Tennant nor Christopher Eccleston, they settled on Paul McGann on the agreement all his episodes would be like the New Series, with 50-minute episodes, and depict the Eighth Doctor’s dying days before he regenerated at the start of "Ruse".

McGann and Hitler were so happy they drank Liverpool dry. Twice.

Then, while still completely inebriated, decided on the new companion Lucie Miller and called in every available young actress with a Northern accent in the entire country. Only the presence of the Dead Northern Mafia present prevented there being one hell of a bitching orgy, though McGann and Hitler swore blind they saw a many great people who they promised to seduce in future productions.

Sheridan "Two Pints of Lager And A Packet Of Crisps Please I’m A Grown Up" Smith shone brighter than all the others, she hit the nail on the head – usually into any actresses that might have been better than her at the role.

Leaving the incredibly hungover Hitler to prepare a sharp bunch of scripts for the rest of the season, with Dustbin stories and Cybermen stories and make the ones in between full of vaguely interesting plots on alien planets, other realities, parallel Earth and in fact just about ANYWHERE except fucking Cardiff, McGann returned to Big Finish to appear in the final stories of his two most long-running if not most admired companions.

Chosen to pen the finale for the character he created was Alan Barnes, Big Finish’s resident script editor, which allowed three times the amount of fanwanky references to her first story than it would have had previously. Meanwhile, Nigel Verkoff was rewarded for his psychotic obsession with India Fisher by appearing as himself in her final story, rounding off his own contemptuous attempt at a story arc from Fan & Phantasmagoria, Terri’s Firmer, Caption: 1872, Orange, Id, 300 and The Rip-off, The Sequel and The Cyb-Fest trilogy. This would prove to be his last appearance in Big Finish since by now everyone’s hatred of Verkoff had penetrated even HIS egomaniacal shell.

Briggs demanded that the story feature the Cybermen since he had pimped out the Dustbins all year and given them yet ANOTHER series of their spin-off Dustbin Umpire. The Cybermen of course, always on the brink of total extinction and one of Doctor Who’s true failures as an alien menace, appealed to Briggs for reasons that were obvious to the rest of the English-speaking world. He also spent ages perfecting the new voice of the Cybermen using the hilarious LSD-ESL methods of The Tense Planet, the computerized buzzing of The Evasion, and the Japanese accents of Silver Finish. When absolutely no one noticed, he sulked in his room for three days, allowing the cast, crew and most of the production team another bid for escape.

The ensuing four episodes are remarkable in how they effectively combine all the elements intrinsic to both the archetypal classic Doctor Who serial and also the more modern and emotionally mature new series episode and actually make something vaguely entertaining.

Back in the day, the Eighth Doctor and Charley were more popular than the Ninth Doctor and Rose, with their fantastic first two seasons together... Then, suddenly, it was as though their relationship, and Charley herself, changed literally overnight, back to the most generic main character and cypher role. The addition of C’Rizz did nothing to help, a companion so painfully dull that he sucked the life out of every BF story he was in, leading to the true nadir of pain that Gay Russell named The Best Wife. It was only India Fisher’s consistent brilliance and Charley being one of the most promiscuous companions for the Doctor in any medium that makes anyone really sad to see her go.

Especially after being in all bar two Eighth Doctor stories over the last... seven... fucking... years...

Nevertheless, The Girl Who Never Was A Virgin, with Charley rutting and rusting the Cybermen into submission, and India Fisher reminds us why she’s been such a successful companion in the sack. This leads to a brave conclusion, a real change from the usual tearful-but-patronizing leaving scenes that companions usually get... apart from the ones that tend to die horribly like Liz Shaw, Adric, Nyssa, Peri or, on a bi-weekly basis, Captain Jack. In short, it’s utterly typical and nothing less – or more - than Charley deserved.

However, this would not be the end of the road for Charley Pollard. Between Nigel Verkoff’s intense passionate stalking and Alan Barnes’ severe personality disintegration, there was no way they were going to abandon the character just because Nick Briggs and the Eighth Doctor had completely and utterly moved on.

While the Eighth Doctor and Lucie embarked on a whole new lot of adventures battling Dustbins, Cybermen, Autons, Bygones and a really shocking rehash of Moby from The Brain of Moby, India Fisher and Charley Pollard would get a brain new audio series all to herself - and a brand new Doctor for her to seduce...

"The One-Night Stand Before"
by Paul McGann, India Fisher and the Cult of Pollard

You call that a goodbye? (ah, the night before)
Lust was in your eye! (ah, the night before)
Now today I realize
You won’t change your mind!
This shoulda happened the night before!

Well, I was telling lies! (ah, the night before)
Trusting me was unwise! (ah, the night before)
When you held me near
I was so sincere but
I was totally faking it the night before! Yeah!

Last night’s not the night
I wanna remember you, girl
When I think of things you and lizard boy did
It makes me wanna hurl!

You call that a goodbye? (ah, the night before)
Lust was in your eye! (ah, the night before)
Now today I realize
You won’t change your mind!
This shoulda happened the night before! Yes!

When you held me near
I was so sincere but
I was totally faking it the night before! Yeah!

Last night’s not the night
I wanna remember you, girl
When I think of things you and lizard boy did
It makes me wanna hurl!

Well, I was telling lies! (ah, the night before)
Trusting me was unwise! (ah, the night before)
When I held you near
You were so sincere
I was totally faking it the night before!
We all faked it the night before.

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