Neil Gaiman: From The Doctor' Wife. An out-take...


We’re about ten days away from the Doctor Who table reading. I spoke to the Director for the first time yesterday. And the script is pretty much the script. (ie, I’m about to send off a script to the Script Editor that I hope will be, if not the last draft, then the one that we go into the table read with). Technically it’s probably the tenth draft, but I’m not really counting any more. (The “Cut ten pages” draft of the trip to Australia was the last one that felt like major surgery.) Steven Moffat came to my rescue when I felt like I couldn’t even pick it up again, and for that, he is a hero.

It hasn’t really changed that much. It just gets tighter and, I hope, more like itself. Slowly, draft by draft, it’s being turned up to eleven.

Anything that wasn’t moving the plot forward has gone. Lots of interesting chatty background conversations in the TARDIS, gone. Lines of dialogue that were fun in themselves but weren’t really needed? Gone. And the food scene? Very gone indeed. It’s been gone since draft six. Given that it’s not there any longer, and that that tells you absolutely nothing about the story except that it now doesn’t have a scene with a bowl of food in it, I thought I’d borrow it back from Lucien’s library.
The Doctor has just been given a bowl of something to eat. Something…possibly…alien

Is it something people can eat?
(to Doctor)
Shouldn’t you scan it with your screwdriver or something?
Why would I scan food with my screwdriver?
See if it’s safe?
The Doctor leans over, dips his finger into his bowl, tastes it.
Some unusual trace elements, smidge too much background radiation, but, yeah, very yummy.
Amy is about to try some of his food… he stops her.
THE DOCTOR (cont’d)
No. Don’t put it in your mouth.
Not for humans?
Not for you. Tastes like Marmite on socks.


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