Liam Rudden: The Doctor Who will see you now

Madame Vastra (NEVE MCINTOSH) -Pic:  BBC
Madame Vastra (NEVE MCINTOSH) -Pic: BBC
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SO, another Scot has taken on the mantle of the Doctor in the long-running sci-fi series Doctor Who. Bizarrely, as his first episode was being broadcast I found myself in the company of a previous Scottish Doctor, Sylvester McCoy, who just happened to materialise at the New Town Theatre’s end of Fringe party.

To be honest, it was this meeting, as McCoy shared showbiz tales of Rocky Horror and shared dressing rooms, that spurred me into watching the latest incumbent take on the role - Peter Capaldi.

I’m glad I did as it is always great to catch my old pal Neve McIntosh on the box. A one time member of the old Edinburgh Youth Theatre, Neve has done well for herself. The irony is, of course, that as Madame Vastra she has become one of the most loved characters in the series, and yet few know what she actually looks like. Yes, Neve can still enjoy a pint with pals safe in the knowledge that only the most ardent of fans will recognise her.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, Madame Vastra and co are just screaming for a spin-off series.

As for Peter Capaldi’s debut, the episode looked fantastic. Atmospheric and beautifully shot with some great special effects. The performances, too, were all of a high standard. The story on the other hand was trite, no sense of drama, pacing or for that matter, storytelling.

It beggars belief that such a poor script actually got into production. But then all too often now there seems to be a real lack of skill when it comes to penning TV drama.

I blame the soap opera mentality, which insists every scene has to be short, sharp and angsty.

Either that or injected with quirky banal humour. Capaldi must have been mortified to find himself spluttering some of the lines put into his mouth this week.

Can’t see me making another appointment with this Doctor. Well, not until Madame Vastra returns anyway.