Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Time and Relative Dimensions In Polish

Today I've decided to mix it up a little bit and show you an American indie polish. My devotion to the Australian indie polish industry usually takes up what disposable income I have, but once in a while something from our cultural neighbours catches my eye. When I noticed Lyn B Designs on Etsy, I decided I needed to make a little room in the budget. Her collections cover all sorts of nerdy fandoms - Sherlock, Land Before Time, Princess Bride and Dr. Seuss, but it was the Doctor Who polishes that I just couldn't go past. 

I used to be an enormous Doctor Who fan - I remember loving Tom Baker as a wee little proto Cassie, and even knitted myself a couple of different versions of his scarf. I was over the moon when the series was rebooted, and (some) of the hoky special effects updated. I loved Eccleston's initial incarnation of the The Doctor, and got deeply obsessed during David Tennant's run. But slowly, over time, my enthusiasm faded. Martha annoyed me so much I nearly jumped off, but then Donna brought me back. The last two seasons however? I haven't even finished watching them. I've watched bits here and there, and every bit I watch reminds me why I stopped watching. But more about my feels later - first I was to show you these pretty, pretty polishes that in every way live up to the show I loved.

Time and Relative Dimensions In Space is a navy blue jelly with scattered silver glitters, that goes on remarkably easily for a jelly. These pictures are actually two coats alone - no undies!

Lyn B Designs Time And Relative Dimensions In Space

Lyn B Designs Time And Relative Dimensions In Space

It does dry to an oddly matte finish, so you'll need to put some nice shiny topcoat over it, but it's very smooth and self levelling for such a glitterific polish.

Lyn B Designs Time And Relative Dimensions In Space

Lyn B Designs Time And Relative Dimensions In Space

I'm The The Doctor is a black jelly with a veritable rainbow of glitters spread through it. Like TARDIS, this also doesn't need any undies - all these pictures are two coats alone.

Lyn B Designs I'm The Doctor

Lyn B Designs I'm The Doctor

This one doesn't dry as matte as TARDIS, but because of the huge glitter concentration it still looks best with a nice shiny, gooey topcoat over it.

Overall, I was really pleased with these. They're nothing groundbreaking, but they are good ideas and beautiful colour palettes done really well, with a fantastic, consistent formula. Because of international regulations, if you want to get these in Australia you'll have to do the usual Etsy trick of messaging the owner and requesting a custom listing - but she sorted that all out for me really quickly, and the polishes arrived in a very timely manner, so I'd totally recommend you go and check out her ever growing range of nerdy creations.

On a less positive note, let's get back to my feelings on the show behind these polishes. I've been stuck at home for the last two days because my neck has gotten thrown out, so I've been rewatching the last couple of seasons of Doctor Who trying to put my finger on where I think it went wrong. There's been a lot of ink (or pixels) spilled over what went wrong in general - the plot has become incoherent, Stephen Moffat can't write a decent female character to save his life, the apparently unending "breaks" the show keeps going on...all of these are perfectly valid criticisms. But I realised that for me, the real core of the reason I don't enjoy watching it anymore is because of the way the companions are being written.

Rose is still my favourite companion. I know a lot of people found her irritating, but in terms of writing, I think she was a brilliantly drawn character. I think the companions in Doctor Who need to act as an anchor for the viewer - a conduit by which we can connect our feelings to this fantastical, imaginary world, and Rose did this perfectly. We saw what her life was like before she met the Doctor, and the show explored the reasons she went with him, rather than breezing through with the assumption that, "Well, why wouldn't you?" They explored the consequences of just running off into time and space, by showing the effect on the family Rose left behind, and also by bringing in Sarah Jane to show what happens when the adventure is over. Donna maintains a connection with her family back home as well - not to the same extent as Rose, but her mother and her ecccentric stargazing grandfather are still recurring characters. These storylines acted as hooks, a way the audience could relate to what was happening and get emotionally invested. Daleks are cool and all, but I find it hard to get emotionally invested in a storyline about robots with a plunger on their heads. Imagining how my mother would feel if I just disappeared though...that's something I can empathise with, something I can picture. I feel like the more recent companions really haven't gone into this much. I mean, Rory and Amy disappear from their own wedding reception with nothing more than a goodbye. Earlier in the same episode Amy had been overjoyed to see her parents, but left them again without a though. This is pretty hard to engage with emotionally, because if I knew someone who really did this, I would think they were a total jerk. Stephen Moffat is also far too fond of the fakeout - his seasons are full of people getting killed, disappearing from reality, getting trapped in time, and inevitably being brought back again so quickly you don't even have time to mourn them. The reason the scene between Rose and David Tennant's Doctor when they get trapped on either side of a dimensional rift is engaging even on the fiftieth rewatch because she doesn't come back right away. If upheavals like that are taken back almost immediately, they lose all their impact and the show loses it's ability to engage the audience emotionally.

I also find it really hard to engage with companions who seem to do nothing but wail for the Doctor to come and save them. I said before that Martha as a companion annoyed the piss out of me, and this was almost entirely down to the way they wrote her as perpetually waiting for the Doctor to save her. I swear, half her lines were just, "The Doctor will save us" or "The Doctor will fix it", and it drove me CRAZY. Martha was depicted as being smart and driven before she met the Doctor, but when she started time travelling she apparently left her spine behind. Happily, this trend was reversed with Donna. I loved that she was ballsy, rude, and happily told The Doctor to pull his head in when he needed it. When the Doctor ditches her, Donna doesn't just wait for him to come back, she goes actively looking for him. THIS I could relate to. This was a companion I would like to imagine myself as - not some whiny damsel waiting to be rescued, but one who was willing to argue back, to tell the Doctor off, to go looking for him rather than wait out her life in tedious mediocrity. But she was also unfortunately the start of the companion being used as merely a plot device rather than an actual character. The whole Doctor Donna ending annoyed me enormously, and this trend is what, in the end, has put me off the series.

Earlier companions like Rose were always spoken of in terms of making an active choice to go with the Doctor - but once Amy came along, suddenly she was always spoken of as being taken with The Doctor. A small semantic change perhaps, but one that I think reflects a big change in how the companions were being written. At once stage the Doctor explains that he "took" Amy because she was "The girl who's life didn't make could I resist?" This statement frames Amy as an object, a puzzle to be solved, and as someone who has been treated like this by more than one potential suitor, this attitude actually really upsets me. I know how it feels to be on the receiving end of that kind of intellectual curiosity, and it reminds me of how emotionally punishing it can be when the curious party is disappointed or overwhelmed by what they find out when they get beyond the facade. If it hasn't happened to you, I don't really know how to describe the fear and hurt that results when someone determines to "solve" you, and then takes it out on you when they realise they can't. The times I've had people tell me they'd love to explore kink, only to look at me with open disgust and spit "freak" at me when I reveal my fantasies; the times people have said they totally get mental illness, and then run screaming the first time I have a bad day; all the people who've ever looked inside me and found me different to how they expected, and judged me lacking for that; these are the experiences this attitude reminds me of, and I just can't have fun watching a show where this attitude comes up ALL THE TIME.

I don't mind Rory. He's the kind of well intentioned doofus I can dig.
Anyway, that's my gripey two cents. I haven't watched any of the most recent season because I just can't deal with yet more of "woman as puzzle to be solved". Perhaps if Moffat ever leaves, it will be different. But for the time being, I'm going to stick with rewatching the earlier years.


  1. I was never a Dr Who watcher until the new series. I agree that the later seasons haven't been as emotionally engaging as the first two. I also loved Rose and Donna, and hated Donna's ending so much.
    I haven't minded Matt Smith seasons, but it's definitely a different show. I hope they find more depth again later. The thing that kept me going the last few seasons is River. I really love a tragic love story, so it hits the spot for me. Not enough to save the show, but enough to give me good sads.

  2. Ooh, TARDIS is such a gorgeous polish! I recently bought Nail Pattern Boldness Oodiful and It's Bigger On The Inside so I'm very excited to try those.

    As for Doctor Who - I kind of fell into it after I saw a couple of Eccleston's episodes on TV with my brother, and I'm currently halfway through Season 4. My favourite Doctor so far is Eccleston but I absolutely love the dynamic of Ten and Donna. I still don't like Rose, though. I understand all the points you talked about but I never clicked with her...I think it was partly the whole romance thing going on between her and the Doctor that annoyed me.


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