Radio Free Skaro #253 – Yarrr's Revenge


Radio Free Skaro #253 – Click here to listen

It’s a pirate party, and yarrr all invited as The Three Who Rule take a look at the latest Doctor Who offering, The Curse of the Black Spot. The boys hash through the highs, lows and plethora of middles of this eye of the storm between the Series 6 two-part opener and Neil Gaiman’s sure-to-be-awesome-but-dark episode 4, always keeping the goals of stats and public safety in sight.
Show Notes:

Skaro Shop…North America!
Skaro Shop…UK!
Radio Free Skaro…on GetGlue!
Radio Free Skaro…on Tumblr!
The Curse…of the Black Spot!
The Curse of the Black Spot…overnight viewing figures!
Day of the Moon…final viewing figures!
Doctor Who…dominating iPlayer!
The Doctor’s Wife…next week!
The Rebel Flesh…airing May 14!
The Sarah Jane Adventures…finished.
Series 6.1 DVD release…timed for San Diego Comic-Con!
2012 DVD releases from…2 Entertain!
Invasion of the Dinosaurs…commentary submitted!
Doctor Who nominated for several…Welsh BAFTAs!
Oliver Elmes…dies, sadly.

Check-in on GetGlue!]]>

9 Comments on “Radio Free Skaro #253 – Yarrr's Revenge

  1. Warren’s snide attacks on McCoy are getting tiresome. It’s been over 250 episodes and I think we all get it, Dr Evil doesent like the Seventh Doctor.
    Interesting the only time he kept his mouth shut on the subject was when Gary Russell was on the show. Perhaps he should be a guest more often?

  2. A brief correction for Chris – BBC America has aired the “Amy thing” before the main titles on all three episodes.

    Congrats on 253 episodes. If you’d done one episode for every episode of Doctor Who, this would have been The War Games Part Ten. Looking forward to the color era of RFS next week.

    • @Matthew I was going by what someone in Atlanta told me, who watched on BBCA and said they didn’t air the Amy piece during Day of the Moon. Obviously I can’t see first hand what was or wasn’t done, not being in America. 🙂

  3. The only way The Curse of the Black Spot can be redeemed is if IT NEVER HAPPENED. There are far too many errors. It must be a dream. Hence the woman with the eyepatch. I hope.

  4. Regarding Capt. Avery and the alien spaceship. When I saw the scene with him at the helm, I was reminded of General Grugger and crew from “Meglos”. It’s unlikely that the Gaztaks developed a civilization advanced enough to produce spacefaring vessels that could visit Earth. I suspect they learned enough about a ship they “acquired” so they could pilot it. Pretty much like Avery and crew would have had to have done.

  5. Wow, you guys went soft on this episode. I’m with Neil—it makes no sense.

    First off, you were generally right in all the discussion about CPR/First Aid. Yes Amy needed to be pinching Rory’s nose or her giving breaths would be useless. Steven is right that giving breaths is optional as of the November 2010 American Hearth Association Guidelines—if you’re skilled at CPR, you can try and give breaths (2 after every 30 chest compressions, which was not what Amy was doing) but the most important thing is to give chest compressions with minimal interruption—compressing the chest will cause some compression of the lungs so air will go in and out of them giving some amount of ventilation.

    Nowe, if there are two people, it’s no longer optional—one person should do chest compressions and the other should give breaths—which means the Doctor should have been helping Amy by giving breaths. Finally, it’s extraordinarily rare that CPR will start a heart that’s arrested; you need electric shocks or medications so the Doctor should have been fetching those from the TARDIS sickbay. Also as Chris notes, if Rory drowned, his lungs were probably full of air, so they’d need to be drained or suctioned (unless the siren already did it). So basically, Doctor Who just taught millions of children incorrect resuscitation.

    Moving on to just a few of the things that make no sense in this episode, if Rory was well enough in the siren’s sickbay to speak (i.e. lungs have no water, heart is working), why did he need CPR at all? Everyone who was in the sickbay with small cuts—why’d they need to be sedated and on life-support machines? Why hadn’t their wounds healed by now? Why didn’t the Doctor just take them off the ship?

    Just before Rory falls into the ocean, the Doctor is chiding Avery for losing his wife and now his son for gold—how much is that worth to him!? Then he turns around and starts saying that the Siren maybe hasn’t killed everyone; out of the blue he starts saying that she’s intelligent and that they can reason with her. Where did this come from?

    This story is like Victor of the Daleks—there’s a good premise to it, and a good twist, but it’s presented terribly, and in a way that makes no sense. It tries to cover that up with an emotional climax near the end, but it’s a purely manufactured climax that doesn’t make sense, and who’s resolution doesn’t really make sense either. A huge wasted opportunity.

    Oh well, hopefully Gaiman will finally give us a story that’s coherent all the way through (the opening two parter was good, but sadly has several plot holes).

    • It doesn’t necessarily explain Rory but as far as the others go, it was explicitly stated the medical program on the ship didn’t know how to take care of humans (only recognize they weren’t in perfect shape), thus no repairing of wounds.

      As to the wounds not healing on their own, it was also explicitly stated the medical program put patients in stasis, thus the wounds could not heal.

  6. My partner and I look forward to listening to each new podcast on a Monday morning drive to work – we have listened to many, but yours is the most enjoyable – you guys put a lot of hard work, research and passion into your show, so hats off to all 3 of you.

    While I appreciate the various opinions, which is great you guys all have very different and well analyzed outlooks, I think I agree with Reggie, that sometimes Warren’s attacks on McCoy’s and Hartnell’s contributions are a bit much. Each actor contributed their own to the make DR WHO what it was and still is, and the series today is an amalgamation, and a reaction, to everything that came before it – good, bad and the ugly.

    I seem to recall that Curse Of Fenric was in the top 10 in DW Magazine’s all time fan favourites – not bad for a McCoy story – but I’m sure Warren would say that had nothing to do with McCoy. I for one didn’t enjoy the early McCoy era, but I felt that as the original series began to fall out of favour with the British public, the production team had finally struck gold again with the combination of the seventh doctor and ACE – but it was too late by then – the mistakes made by the production team in the later years of WHO can’t all be pinned on the actors, and as a fan, I always seem to find elements to enjoy, even if this one isn’t my favourite doctor, or that one isn’t my favourite companion.

    And as for Hartnell, the first time I saw the early stories was on WUTV from Buffalo in the early 80’s as a teenager – and I sat enthralled from the first story – they were shown as omnibus movies each week, and I was captured, transported, and taken along on the journey just as Ian and Barbara were – there is something magical and imaginative about those early stories, and for all of Hartnell’s shortcomings (forgetting lines here and there, but recovering like a master), many of which were later realized to be his illness, he is one my favourite doctors of all time. So there Warren! Just try to be a little kinder and gentler, no one expects you to tone down your critiques, but to simply call something “crap” is just kind of lazy man.

    Otherwise, Keep up the great work guys! I love your podcast – gotta get me and my boyfriend t-shirts


  7. Ian:

    The impression I’ve always got is that Warren has no issue with McCoy and his portrayal of the Doctor; just with the stories McCoy is in. Though I’ve never met him, so maybe I’m totally wrong. I’m like you—I think seasons 25–26 are very good.

    And like you, I think the Hartnell era was probably the most imaginative era of Doctor Who. All future eras of Doctor Who became constrained by what they could realize well (hence focusing on the “base under siege” format under Troughton, etc.); for some reason, that wasn’t the case early on. Early on, the new series almost felt like the Hartnell era to me—a Doctor with mystery surrounding him and behaving differently than we’re used to (e.g. more anger, less kind), more sense of wonder at the universe and the feeling that anything was possible.


    Ok, fair enough. I guess I can buy the sick bay was stupid enough to think that cuts needed full life support.

    You’re right, there’s an explicit mention of stasis, and a separate one earlier of suspended cellular activity. I ignored that since the siren needs to sedate everyone, so implicitly their bodies must still be working—we see Rory wake up and the siren come back and put him to sleep (and then he wakes up again once Amy signs the consent). So cellular function must still be active. So maybe I’m wrong to ignore the stasis explanation, but it still won’t make sense since there’s contradiction of spoken explanations and what we see on screen.

    Also, when the siren is singing in the sickbay to re-sedate Rory, why don’t Amy/Avery/The Doctor also get sedated—they clearly still have black spots. Shouldn’t the Siren noticing them around, promptly sedate them and put them on life support as well?

    Sloppy writing, I think.

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