Doctor Who s32 ep 7

“Demons run when a good man goes to war.”

Or they, um, kidnap babies to raise them to be Doctor-killing weapons.  Who travel the opposite way in time.  I think.

The Who mid-season finale was written by Steven Moffat; Who super-fan, twist-master extraordinaire, and general genius.  So it was obviously witty, sad, intricate, and often completely over my head.  Where did this army come from?  Should I remember Lorna Bucket from her previous meeting with the Doctor?  What is Madame Kovarian’s problem?  And how on earth (or anywhere else for that matter) can people without heads see where they’re going?

But while a lot of it deserved praise, it fell just short of fabulous for me.  Some of the big cues and the guest characters didn’t quite resonate as they should with me, given the significant gaps in my Who history, and I’ve now heard Amy do the “There’s this ace man out there, he’s so awesome, he’s going to save us all – ha ha, fooled you, it’s Rory, not the Doctor!” speech too many times to find it anything other than irritating.  Colonel Manton was a cliché, and an unconvincing one at that.  And River giving the Doctor the big lecture at the end was a bit pot-kettle-black, I thought.

But the jokes were very funny, the Doctor and Rory meeting the baby was adorable (“I speak Baby” – Heh.), it’s always lovely to see The Last Centurion, and the twist at the end would have been absolutely amazing had too many bright sparks not worked it out weeks ago, robbing it of  the shock factor it deserved.  Plenty that was brilliant then, and nothing too much to complain about.  Except having to wait till autumn for the rest of the season…


8 thoughts on “Doctor Who s32 ep 7

  1. Tim June 4, 2011 / 10:32 pm

    Not quite perfect, but damn near close enough for me. Although the two end twists were fairly obvious – the River Song revelation was a particularly popular theory by the hardcore fans and the Melody Flesh avatar was quite well signposted, I thought – that made them no less enjoyable. How Any reacts to having already met a grown-up version of her daughter will be an interesting thread for the rest of the season.

    I still find Amy’s devotion to and belief in Rory quite touching. Plus, I quite like Karen Gillan. (Yum.) Manton was a bit of a one-note plot device, but the Colonel Runaway bit made it all worthwhile.

    I didn’t think that gaps in knowledge of Who history mattered that much. As long as you’ve seen the last season and a half, I think it largely makes sense: the religious army Clerics, Dorium, a Sontaran, a Silurian, thankfully no Daleks.

    So many great parallels too. Lorna Bucket is an alternate Amy, and Commander Strax the warrior/nurse is a nice Rory counterpoint.

    And so many great lines, but my favourites were Rory’s two in the pre-credits teaser: “Where. Is. My. Wife?” and then, with a Cyber fleet exploding behind him, “Do I need to repeat the question?”

    Looking back, I find it quite incredible that this was only a marginally extended episode (by 5 minutes?) – shorter than a Xmas special, and yet with so much happening. It threw the Flesh double episode into start contrast, for sure.

    I’ll stop babbling now, as I haven’t really had a chance to get my thoughts together on this. I’ll be penning a mid-season review to follow at some point – tonight if I can stay awake, otherwise some time before Monday evening hopefully.

    • CJ Cregg June 5, 2011 / 10:20 am

      The only one who of the Doctor’s Army whom I really enjoyed was Strax, to be honest. “Perhaps one day we shall meet on the field of battle and I will destroy you for the glory of the Sontaran empire!” Heh. Lorna’s prayer leaf was very sweet, and I did feel sad for her at the end, but there was a whiff of “making up the numbers” with everyone else I thought. Actually, even with Lorna, which the show acknowledged – “They’re always brave.”

      Totally agree that it was absolutely incredible how much they crammed in to the 50 minutes.

      • Tim June 5, 2011 / 12:07 pm

        I did like Strax – only a few scenes, but it felt like we’d known him for ages. Vastra was quite fun too.

        Lorna was indeed a slomewhat odd inclusion, but I guess she was there as a counterpoint to Amy. Unless the Moff has a sneaky plan to bring her back from the dead …

  2. e June 5, 2011 / 8:47 am

    All Moffat. All the time. Need. Want.

    • Tim June 8, 2011 / 2:35 pm

      Although the lack of news on Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill would appear to strengthen the view that both will be leaving at the end of this season …

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