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Chicks Unravel Time: Women Journey Through…
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Chicks Unravel Time: Women Journey Through Every Season of Doctor Who

by Deborah Stanish (Editor), L.M. Myles (Editor)

Other authors: Liz Barr (Contributor), Elisabeth Bolton-Gabrielsen (Contributor), K. Tempest Bradford (Contributor), Anna Bratton (Contributor), Aliette de Bodard (Contributor)26 more, Amal El-Mohtar (Contributor), Diana Gabaldon (Contributor), Kelly Hale (Contributor), Mags Halliday (Contributor), Barbara Hambly (Contributor), Jenni Hughes (Contributor), Teresa Jusino (Contributor), Sarah Lotz (Contributor), Una McCormack (Contributor), Laura McCullough (Contributor), Erica McGillivray (Contributor), Seanan McGuire (Contributor), Juliet E. McKenna (Contributor), Laura Mead (Contributor), Emma Nichols (Contributor), Jennifer Pelland (Contributor), Tansy Rayner Roberts (Contributor), Lara J. Scott (Contributor), Iona Sharma (Contributor), Courtney Stoker (Contributor), Rachel Swirsky (Contributor), Caroline Symcox (Contributor), Lynne M. Thomas (Contributor), Joan Frances Turner (Contributor), Martha Wells (Contributor), Kaite Welsh (Contributor)

Series: The Geek Girl Chronicles (4)

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With the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who just around the corner and the celebrations already well underway, this seemed like the perfect time to pull this book off the shelf. It's actually a follow-up volume of sorts to Chicks Dig Time Lords, a collection of personal essays by female Doctor Who fans. This one also features essays by women, but this time each one focuses on a particular season of the show, covering the entire span of Whovian history.

You'd probably expect such a collection to take a linear approach, starting with season one and working its way up through the most recent episodes of the new series, but instead these essays are in no discernible order at all. It's an odd choice, but appropriate for a show that describes time as a "big ball of wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff," and it works surprisingly well.

The essays themselves range from unabashed fangirling to careful analysis of thematic elements, which considerably more of the latter than the former. Perhaps unsurprisingly, a great many of them deal with gender issues in one form or another, but the writers seem to have been left free to focus on whatever aspects of their individual season they like, and there's a fair amount of variety as a result.

I don't know that there's anything here that strikes me as extremely memorable or insightful, but almost all of these pieces are thoughtful and reasonably interesting, and it's rather nice to see such a diversity of perspectives on the show. I'm also quite impressed by the balanced way in which almost all these authors manage to embrace both a deep affection for the series and a willingness to accept and analyze its faults. Far too often, fans seem to exhibit either the kind of love that regards any criticism as a personal attack or the kind of bitter hate that leads to wails of "Now they've completely gone and ruined it!", and it's always a relief to be reminded that there are people perfectly capable of inhabiting a middle ground between the two.

I should probably note that this is definitely a book aimed at hardcore Who fans, as it often tends to assume that you're familiar with the episodes and characters and ideas it's referencing. While I wouldn't exactly call it essential reading, even for said hardcore fans, it is interesting enough to be worth a look for Whovians of any gender. ( )
  bragan | Nov 19, 2013 |
I had a lot of fun reading this book, it brought back a lot of memories of my old Doctor Who watching experiences, gave me new perspectives to look back on them with and in some cases exposed me to seasons I had not seen so it sort of felt like it was filling in the gaps a bit.

I was impressed with how honest the essays were, these were not written by rabid, rose colored glass wearing fangirls but by thoughtful fans who clearly put a lot of thought into what made one of their favorite shows work and sometimes not work. Where it got it right, where it got it wrong and why both were important for so many reasons.

My one and only quibble with this book is that I wish they had organized the essays in order of the seasons they covered. I feel it would have been interesting to see the essays as a progression through the series but that is such a small thing and ultimately their order didn’t really detract from my enjoyment of reading them so I don’t really hold it against the book.

If you are a fan of Doctor Who, especially if you are a fan of the classic Doctor Who series this is a fun book that makes you think and look a bit differently at a beloved series and it made me want to invest in a regionless DVD player so I can get as many of the surviving episodes as I can. ( )
  Kellswitch | Aug 10, 2013 |
http://nwhyte.livejournal.com/2065071.html

A sister book to Chicks Dig Time Lords, this is a set of essays by women on each season/series of Doctor Who, old and new. One or two are sheer squee, but most are serious examinations of the show, usually (but not always) positive, often looking at gender issues, and one or two commentaries on race (also one chapter on "The Doctor's Balls" and another on "David Tennant's Bum"). I particularly enjoyed the chapters which were constructively critical - thinking of Caroline Symcox and Aliette de Bodard in particular - but almost all of them are good and thought-provoking. (But I discover that I have a finite tolerance for sheer squee.) Recommended for thoughtful Who fans. ( )
  nwhyte | Feb 10, 2013 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stanish, DeborahEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Myles, L.M.Editormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Barr, LizContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bolton-Gabrielsen, ElisabethContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bradford, K. TempestContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bratton, AnnaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
de Bodard, AlietteContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
El-Mohtar, AmalContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gabaldon, DianaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hale, KellyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Halliday, MagsContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hambly, BarbaraContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hughes, JenniContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jusino, TeresaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lotz, SarahContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McCormack, UnaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McCullough, LauraContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McGillivray, EricaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McGuire, SeananContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
McKenna, Juliet E.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mead, LauraContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nichols, EmmaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Pelland, JenniferContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Roberts, Tansy RaynerContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Scott, Lara J.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sharma, IonaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stoker, CourtneyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Swirsky, RachelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Symcox, CarolineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thomas, Lynne M.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Turner, Joan FrancesContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wells, MarthaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Welsh, KaiteContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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This book is dedicated to Elisabeth Sladen, Caroline John, Mary Tamm and all the chicks who made (and make) Doctor Who fantastic.
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