Amph Doctor Who Discussion (Now Awaiting Peter Capaldi)

Discussion in 'Community' started by Darth Guy, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. Juliet316 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
    TV Shows looking more and more like film is the wave of the future.
  2. PirateofRohan Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 11, 2009
    star 3
    So what happens if films start looking more and more like TV shows?:eek:
  3. Juliet316 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
  4. SithLordDarthRichie London CR

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Oct 3, 2003
    star 8
    See a movie in 48fps if you like that sort of thing :p
  5. Juliet316 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
  6. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    You're right. It should all look like series 1. We should shoot everything on video. Not even digital cinema. Video.

    But seriously, it should look crappier? What? How on earth does that have a positive creative effect, especially in a show with fantastical elements where making things look better allows you to be more immersed? It's not just about making it look like a film. It's about allowing the directors and cinematographers and production designers and visual artists to present their work in high photographic detail and accurate color. I said it looks more like film, the medium. It still feels very much like a television show. But there's absolutely no reason to shoot something on video or a lower quality digital camera when you can shoot it on something that has the photographic detail or nearly 35mm.
    Last edited by solojones, Feb 12, 2013
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  7. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
  8. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7
    I'll shorten:

    Doctor Who didn't become worse when the BBC switched to colour. Nor when the filming switched to HD. Making Doctor Who look better does not = making the show worse.
    solojones likes this.
  9. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    Ah, so once again she's claiming I've said something I haven't and gone off on a rant about it. Gotcha.
  10. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7
    No, I was just paraphrasing to get her point across easier. Your argument is that by making an episode look more film like in style it effects the content of the episode itself. SJ was pointing out that a change in camera technology isn't going to do that, and I just tried to get the point across by pointing out there is no precedent for that happening in the past when camera technology made leaps forward.
    Last edited by Chewgumma, Feb 13, 2013
  11. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    ONE of the reasons. Poor writing is another. Conversely by your argument, Red Dwarf seven was the best series. Obviously that is nonsense.
  12. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7
    No one claimed that making the visuals better automatically equated to a better product, just that it didn't make it worse.
    Darth Guy and Random Comments like this.
  13. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    I suggest you read Rachel's rant again, as that is what comes across
  14. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7
    I don't see how she says it makes the episodes automatically better, all she says is that there is no reason to stick to recording on an outdated format when a better, more movie quality-like format is readily available.
    Darth Guy and Random Comments like this.
  15. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
  16. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7
    That doesn't mean better at all. The only person in the thread suggesting that the camera technology has a direct impact on the quality of the episodes themselves is you.
  17. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    It doesn't matter whether you think it's one reason or the only reason. It's still utter tosh. Shooting on something that looks nearly like 35mm film does not somehow in a bizarro-world way make the show worse. What are you on about.
  18. Mar17swgirl Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Dec 26, 2000
    star 7
    "Better-looking" doesn't necessarily equal "better episode overall". Nor does "better-looking" equal "worse episode".
  19. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7
    Everyone knows that the best Doctor Who episodes were filmed with a potato and acted out with tinfoil though!
  20. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    God, do we really have to have such ridiculous Doctor Who hipsterism? Is that the thing to do now? We're to the "whining about the golden age of NuWho" stage aren't we.
    Darth Guy, Juliet316 and Chewgumma like this.
  21. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    Better looking is an opinion, not a fact. I don't appreciate the levels of vitriol being spouted merely because my opinion differs. I am more than happy to discuss my opinions, but you need to get off your high horse and stop acting like you know it all.
  22. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    No, photographic quality is a scientifically established fact. Whether or not you want something to have photographic quality I suppose is an opinion. But you've given absolutely no explanation as to why the show looking "more like a film" in series 7, why specifically the look of it, has been detrimental to the creative quality of the show. All I've done is try to refute the silly claim that something like latitude, resolution, or the trueness of skintones is some kind of opinion. There are many opinions on different 'looks' of film and video. But there's no arguing the science of it.

    And scientifically, the camera they've been this series allows them to do a lot more things and to have them look much better. Do you know how bad those snow exteriors would have looked on the old cameras? Or how blown out the desert sky would have been in A Town Called Mercy had they been using even the cameras they used in series 6?

    Look, I'm not being vitriolic at all. I guess you tend to take me for someone who's really mean, but in actuality I may be straightforward but I'm hardly angry about it. I'm more baffled than anything. You haven't at all explained your position and to me it makes no sense, and because you haven't refuted anything I've said, I'm going to continue to feel that it makes no sense until you do. And possibly even then, but at least perhaps then you'll have explained yourself.

    As far as knowing it all... look, I'm not claiming to be a big shot or anything. But let's set aside experience and the industry and let me just point out that filmmaking is a highly technical pursuit, and I have a terminal degree in the field. I'm qualified to teach production at the university level and I graduated summa cum laude to boot. I'm not saying that to show off. I'm saying it because I don't really know any other way to talk about something I have intimate knowledge and education of than to assert what I know to be factually correct or incorrect. I wouldn't expect anyone to say any differently about any other field, but for some reason with film and television it's considered pretentious of me. No one would feel that way if I'd gone through law school.
    Last edited by solojones, Feb 13, 2013
  23. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    Photographic resolution may be fact, but quality isn't, especially when it comes to art. You may consider colour to be better quality than B&W, but that doesn't mean you should use it. Whether to shoot on film, video, or shoeboxes is an artistic decision, and thus should be debated on that merit alone.

    Many TV shows have attempted to shoot on film, and examples of shows that suffered for it (IMO) include Casualty, The Bill, Red Dwarf, and Who. In the first 3, the programme makers evidently agreed with me as they reverted back.

    You mentioned it still feels like a TV show, but in the case of 7.1 I disagree. I felt that the producers deliberately tried to make "mini-movies". This is why they either used film, or tried to make it look like film. This is why they produced movie posters for each episode. This is why there was no continuity between the episodes. They were standalone efforts similar to the Specials. I don't like this. You may prefer it, but that doesn't make my opinion invalid, wrong, or "utter tosh"
  24. solojones Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 27, 2000
    star 9
    I agree that choosing a medium involves a lot more than photographic quality. But you have to know that the medium also restricts what kinds of stories you can shoot at all. As I pointed out, shooting on digital that looks like digital makes it very hard to shoot outside in landscapes because it doesn't have the latitude to hold any detail in the sky and it just gets blown out. That looks bad, and it's probably a big part of the reason there wasn't a western in NuWho until now. Or many wide day exteriors at all. I'm just not sure you understand how creatively restricting a lesser photographic medium can be on writers, directors, and DPs. Sure, obviously they've managed to do many stories in the past with different cameras. But for this show, for the scope of the things they can and like to do on this show, having a more capable medium simply makes more sense. In this case, the photographic quality is the right creative decision.

    You're also assuming that those shows you mentioned only switched away from film because of the look. This neglects the fact that film is much more expensive to shoot than video, the primary reason that British shows in particular moved away from shooting on film and really have never moved back. Only now with digital cinema cameras such as the Alexa have shows like Sherlock and Who been able to shoot on the best equivalent of film for much less money. Also, the BBC took a very cheap, flat lighting approach visually in the past that really didn't necessitate shooting on film. What's the point of having a medium that can see into the shadows if you're just pointing a bunch of lights all in one direction and calling it good?

    You have to realise also that all of this is a very foreign concept to American television viewers. The only thing we've shot on video for the last 50 years really is live events and multi-camera sitcoms. (And hell, even some sitcoms shot 35mm. Friends did). Everything else was 35mm or 16mm until digital came along. But we only use plain digital for doc style shows still. Pretty much everything else transitioned from 35mm over to digital cinema cameras like the Alexa or still shoots 35mm. Both drama shows I worked on shot 35mm. I shot 35 or super 16 for my work. To shoot video as the BBC did up until about 2009 (and even when they moved to digital it hasn't been for all shows) is something reserved for introductory film projects and home movies. I don't think many British people quite understand just how jarring it is for Americans to watch British television produced before basically Downton Abbey or Sherlock. I'm more used to it because I've seen a lot of British TV, but that doesn't mean I don't notice how poor the resolution is, the juddering, the wonky theatrical style lighting, the video framerates... in the end I don't even think this is restricted to Americans. I genuinely think the overall experience of the immersiveness of the show improved greatly when they went to digital and now even moreso with digital cinema.

    And yes, in a sense they were making mini-films in terms of each episode being a stand-alone and in a particular sort of genre. But plenty of episodes in NuWho are stand alone, and many people were clamoring for just that from Moffat after so much heavy serialization. But I don't agree that there was no continuity between episodes. That's more of a writing discussion though and I feel like we've kind of beaten poor Susan into the ground on that account already :p


    I was never saying your whole opinion on the episodes was utter tosh. I said quite specifically that declaring better photographic quality to be undesirable was. And I stand by that, sorry. I agree that in some cases you want grittier. You want black and white, 8mm, 60s style large grain, documentary style video... but for a show that isn't presenting a particular photographic point of view like that, those don't make any sense. There's absolutely no reason Doctor Who should be holding back a "the sky's the limit" philosophy with cameras that make some locations impossible or undesirable to shoot in.
    Last edited by solojones, Feb 13, 2013
  25. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    "You're also assuming that those shows you mentioned only switched away from film because of the look."

    It was. I remember the complaints!

    " I don't think many British people quite understand just how jarring it is for Americans to watch British television produced before basically Downton Abbey or Sherlock."

    This could well be the nub of it. This goes both ways. The American "look" to programmes can also be very jarring to a British audience.

    " I said quite specifically that declaring better photographic quality to be undesirable was."

    But it's not the same as, say, preferring HD to SD. I absolutely prefer to see things in a higher resolution. But switching to film changes the "look", not just the resolution. That is what I don't like, and that's an artistic decision. I can understand you not agreeing with that if you prefer the look of film. But it's wrong to state your opinion as fact.