Radio Free Skaro #114 – Jet-Lagged Yet Jaunty

The Three Who Rule were all back on terra firma (ie. North America) this week, and the usual Who-ish banter of course centred around the imminent showing of “The Next Doctor”, due December 25th on UK TVs and computers worldwide. But that didn’t stop the jaunty (and in the case of Chris, jet-lagged) japemeisters from venturing forth on the musical episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer (conclusion: crap), along with an altogether too long talk about the merits of various Star Trek series, before sauntering back to the matter at hand. Next week, Chris and Steven are left to their own devices, as Warren wanders to Egypt to battle Sutekh and save 1980 from Armageddon, seen through the TARDIS doors as terrible model photography and CSO.

Direct download: rfs114.mp3

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3 Responses to Radio Free Skaro #114 – Jet-Lagged Yet Jaunty

  1. I guess you have to really like the Buffy series in order to find the musical episode very interesting. It’s not a good musical because the singers have vast talents. It’s just the best Buffy musical episode in existence, and it’s got the cast actors (that the fans know and love) singing.

    But there’s no debate that its content is canon: It was written by Joss Whedon & friends and it’s a key part of its season’s various story lines (there’s actually a lot of story development in the episode).

    I agree that a Doctor Who musical episode doesn’t make sense. But it made a lot of sense in the Buffy universe. Weird things often happened to the little town of Sunnydale that changed the world and its conditions for an episode or two, and then things were back to normal again.

    That stuff just doesn’t work in Doctor Who. Doctor Who tries to be concrete and maintain connections with present day society while it also spins great scifi yarns involving the Earth and the societies on it.

    Buffy takes place in a fictional, oddly isolated and insulated Californian college town called Sunnydale that has very few links to the rest of the world. Doctor Who uses London and many other named UK locations in the present day. And then the Daleks take over all the countries of the world, and then the sky changes because the Earth has been kidnapped, and then the Doctor fixes everything with his ship and a lasso, and then presto we start over again in present day Cardiff in the next episode.

    By the way, one reason they made some weird episode choices on Buffy was to challenge themselves. That’s the background for the musical episode as well as for the “opposite” episode Hush: Whedon was always told that the snappy dialog made Buffy work so well, so he challenged himself to do an episode without dialog (the whole town lost their voices). I can respect that way of thinking and working.
    (http://www.jankarlsbjerg.com/blog/archives/2006/07/15/giving-yourself-a-scary-challenge/)

    By the way, what does CSO stand for? None of the current Wikipedia bids fit the bill: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CSO

  2. freyburg says:

    Just logging in from Cairo so I’ll keep this short, but CSO stands for Color Seperation Overlay. Basically it’s the exact same technology you see when the weather guy does the map, except it’s pressed into the services of drama and done “live” in studio, as far as I know. They used to shoot the show with a three camera studio setup, like you’d do the news or a soap opera, and a director would switch live from camera to camera. Nowadays it’s all done single camera, like almost everything else on the BBC, and of course the compositing is a quantum leap beyond what they worked with in the Seventies.

  3. Gotcha. Greenscreen.

    Wikipedia’s lookup of “Colour-separation overlay” redirects to “Chroma key” and says that it’s primarily the BBC who calls the technique CSO. 🙂

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