Category: part 2


OK, I was pretty brutal in my review of this episode.  So I decided to watch it again, and I’m glad I did.  Sure, I still have the same complaints about the lack of clarity in terms of story arcs, but I’ll ignore that in favor of looking at the positives.  Let’s start with River Song.

She really has turned into a great character.  Sure, she’s been a favorite of mine before this, but it’s nice to see her develop into a multidimensional character.  It’ll be interesting to see what her, Amy, and Rory do at the beginning of next season without the Doctor.  Speaking of, what about the Doctor?

He’s flying solo now.  I hope it stays that way for a few episodes since Matt Smith is amongst the greats – I put him in at third, with Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker being ahead of him – and deserves as much screen time as possible.  Now that everyone thinks he’s dead I wonder what he’ll be doing to stay hidden.  It’s just for a finale it seemed to lack any finale substance, and instead acted as a setup for next season’s opener.

The story itself was actually pretty good for the episode, and would’ve been great if the only arc to resolve was who killed the Doctor and how he escaped.  I hope Moffat will solve the rest of the arcs (refer to my previous post) in the first half of next season, or at least dedicate the season to solving them rather than adding more.  This seems to be a trend of his, like adding yet another one at the end of this season with the Doctor having to go somewhere (sorry, I forget the name of the place) where he’ll ask the oldest question that he apparently cannot ask because the answer is so horrible.

Overall, my main problems have already been stated in the last post, but the main one still remains; why is Moffat refusing to resolve his arcs and instead keeps adding to them?

Here’s to hoping next season will bring full clarity to it all.  I’d still like to know how River’s and the Doctor’s timelines get reversed, why there are two makeshift TARDIS control rooms, what the Silence is all about, and a few more that have already been posted.  Ending on a positive, it the tribute to the Brigadier was done rather well, especially since he was such an iconic character in the show.

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Spoilers, oh yes!

Well here we are again, another season and another finale.  Only this time it was the complete opposite of good.  Seriously, we’ve been waiting 2 seasons now and nothing has really been solved.  Sure, the Doctor isn’t dead, River is good, they get married, it’s all stuff we’ve pretty much expected to happen.  I’m assuming Madame Kovarian is just one of those characters Moffat wrote with the intention of never finishing her back story.  We still have no proper idea of who the Silence are, but now we don’t know much about the species or the religious following.  Really, making the question be “Doctor Who?” how unoriginal.  It doesn’t mean anything, especially to the Doctor who knows who he is and hides it from everyone else, so why would he have to ask?

Sadly, this picture is about as exciting as the episode gets

Yet again, Moffat thought it would be a cool idea to cram the interesting part of the episode into the last 3 minutes.  Come on, did they really have to spend so much time with Dorium’s head, which wasn’t even funny.  Somewhere along the line someone on the production team should have realized the episode clearly should have been two parts and they should have cut an episode such as the boring, drawn out “God Complex.”  The worst part is, Matt Smith continues to be great as the Doctor, it’s just the writing is really taking a turn for the worse.  I guess Moffat has written himself into a hole and has no way to climb back out.

These are harsh words, I know but coming from a lifelong Doctor Who fan I have never watched an episode in recent memory (classic and new who) that has literally gone nowhere.  I just can’t believe Moffat refuses to actually put an arc to rest, or at this point why not just admit he doesn’t know how to finish it and accept defeat?  Move on, start fresh with some new ideas.  It’s OK, I’d rather have that over yet another season of nothingness.  To think, series 5 had so much promise for the future of the show, and now we’re left with this.  I’m not going to go into the acting, as it’s already been established the cast has each role down pretty great.

I know there are a lot of people who left the show this year due to a lack of resolution, and I can honestly see even more people leaving after this.  Heck, I’m a diehard fan and I’m tempted to leave until Moffat is fired (mark my words, he’ll get fired before he can resign as head writer).  It’s a shame really, I quite liked the darker tone and the arcs, but seeing as none of them will be resolved I really couldn’t care less about them.  I will leave you now with a list of arcs that I believe we still have left unsolved:

  • Why do the Silence want the Doctor dead?
  • Will we ever see the “religious order” that is the Silence?
  • Who is Madame Kovarian, surely she has to be more important than getting what couldn’t be more than a total of 20 minutes of screen time, right?
  • What is the question the Doctor will ask (I refuse to think it’s as lame as “Doctor Who?”)
  • How did the Doctor originally get out of the Pandorica?
  • Not exactly an arc, but where in the ‘verse (look at that, Firefly reference) was the Doctor when he came upon the Dalek that was so conveniently placed under some rubble?
  • Why did they blow up the TARDIS, whoever they are, and why then?
  • How do the timelines of River and the Doctor get screwed up (again, something that’s been an ongoing theme but never explained)?
  • If I recall correctly, the Doctor whispered something to River in “Let’s Kill Hiter,” and he had a tuxedo, so what was going on there?
  • Also, what about the TARDIS control rooms from “The Lodger” and “Day of the Moon,” where will they come into play?

You know what, there are probably more, but at this point I’m just ready to give up (though, as a plus we won’t start the season with Rory and Amy).  Here is one final question:

How long until the BBC fires Moffat?

I give the episode somewhere between a 6.5 -7 out of 10.

Please, leave comments and/or your opinions.

Spoiler Alert!

So, last week I tried a spoiler free review, and that didn’t work out to well.  So here we are, let the spoilers run free (sorry River).  Honestly, I thought the episode was a bit of a letdown.  Not to say it was bad, but coming off of three good episodes and two really great ones it was nothing special.  It started off rather well, but the actual plot was weak.  Some ideas weren’t that bad, what with the hotel really being a prison (which still was kind of odd), the prison being in space and looking like Tron (well that was kind of neat being in space), a minotaur faith eater (really, did they have to make it a minotaur, it really would have been cooler if it were a person, like the antagonist at the end of Torchwood season 1), however, the characters were mainly well done.  Except the alien from a planet of people born to surrender, he was rather useless and actually rather annoying.  There seemed to be a forced attempt of making the episode tense, but it really fell short.

Even the Doctor was bored through this prison romp

Even the Doctor was bored through this prison romp

Showing the Doctor look into his room didn’t really do anything other than tell the audience to sit there and say “oh, I wonder what’s behind that door.”  Really, I couldn’t care less what’s in his room.  Though, Amy’s room yet again showcased Matt Smith’s acting, which just further goes to show how he truly is the best of the new Doctors.  I really can’t even remember the other character’s names, as they weren’t overly memorable.  There were some good moments here and there, but overall they did not do overly much.  I’m hoping a second watch will bring some light on these characters, but as of right now they were relatively flat, especially with Craig coming back next week.

The ending was a nice saving grace.  Rory has really become  a more likable character, especially since he’s become more realistic (even making fun of Amy at times, as real people do to each other).  Though, seeing the Doctor know the gravity of the situation and leaving Amy and Rory behind really set up for a dramatic ending to the season.  This also does some good in terms of story pacing.  After all, “The Doctor’s Wife” suffered from having too much Amy and Rory doing nothing and not enough Doctor and TARDIS interaction.  Surprisingly, this was solved in “The Girl Who Waited,” which clearly had a focus on the companions and the Doctor took a back seat.  I’m hoping we can get similar results next week.  Though, I’m rather tired of Cybermen, so I’m hoping they can make them more interesting than our multicolor Daleks.  Judging from the trailer, it seems like the Cybermere being given a darker approach, and if there’s one thing Moffat has proven on DW it’s that he can do the darker side rather well.  Here’s to hoping next week’s Closing Time will bring the show back on its excellent series 6 run.

As for this episode, I give it a 7 out of 10 (which may not seem that bad due to my score for “Night Terrors,” but after rewatching it I found the episode should be rated a bit higher than 7.5).

Well, here we are again.  Another stand-alone episode in the midst of a gigantic story arc and now only three episodes left.  Oh the insanity of it all.  Truth be told, this was an excellent episode and well worth the departure from the many arcs.  I want to keep this as spoiler free as possible since it should not be ruined for anyone.  So here we are, the Doctor, Amy, and Rory are out and about the universe, except this time with not as much Doctor.  We’ve seen in the past that the Doctor lite episode can either be really great (Turn Left and Blink) while others are just horrible (Love and Monsters).  As noted before, this one falls into the category of really great.

Honestly, the episode did what “The Doctor’s Wife” failed to do (oh yes, I went there).  Whereas that episode was meant to be between the Doctor and the TARDIS, it ended up having too much Amy and Rory doing nothing more than taking time away from the main focus.  Now, this weeks episode had the Doctor there only when it mattered, and it didn’t feel tacked on.  I was truly amazed at the way the writer was able to blend some pure sci-fi with emotional scenes.  As a piece of writing it did what I always like, that is having more character interaction than action sequences to move along the story.  Naturally, this wouldn’t matter if the acting was bad, but it just keeps getting better and better every week.

Amy vs Apple and Rory vs Hipster Glasses, what is going on here?

At this point we pretty much expect Matt Smith to be nothing but excellent.  He really has come a far way, and has proven that he can handle the serious moments with ease, making it easy to picture him as a 900+ year old Timelord.  The surprise act of the episode was Karen Gillan.  Maybe it’s because we’ve seen her play the same role pretty much each episode, but given the chance to play Amy differently but the same (hey, that wording may be odd but to avoid spoilers that’s what you get) really shows how well she can act.  I’d have to say she is the best companion of the new series (well it’s between her and Donna since they ruined Rose’s character when they brought her back in series 4).  Arthur Darvill finally is able to play Rory as a strong character, and I really don’t know why he mainly plays him as a wimp.  Regardless, it was nice to see him take control and really show how much he cares for Amy.  Basically, the cast was nothing short of brilliant this time around and Smith better stay on for at least two more seasons.

 

Warning, possible SPOILER ALERT

Surprisingly, the odd timeline problems in the episode didn’t make it too confusing as the explanation for it wasn’t at all rushed.  If nothing else, it showed how the Doctor doesn’t just pick random people to travel with him as Amy shows some clever survival skills.  Back to the timeline part, which I think may come back to play a part in the story arc.  After all, the Doctor’s and River’s time stream gets reversed, and has yet to be really explained since at the end of episode 8 all she would have to do is find the point after they first met and go there, but something is stopping her from doing that.  Come on, we have three episodes left and about five or more story arcs, where are the answers?  Well, I trust Moffat, but the only worry I have is that too much will be crammed into the final two episodes, making it a tad bit confusing.  Still, this episode has really proven that stand alone episodes can be very well written and engaging for both sci-fi fans and drama fans.

Overall, I’d give the episode a 9/10, simply for the fact that it’s the best stand alone this season and was really well fleshed out in terms of character interaction.  Here’s to next week’s episode with “The God Complex” (come on, another minotaur, already done in the Time Monster with Jon Pertwee).

Did anyone else get the feeling that they were watching something straight out of a Silent Hill game while watching this weeks episode of Doctor Who?  Well I sure did, and that’s not really a bad thing, as it did it better than the actual Silent Hill movie.  That is, until you realize they’re in a dollhouse.  I was worried that a stand-alone would get annoying at this point in the season, and luckily this one didn’t disappoint as the pirate one did.

Coming off of a rather great episode the pace had to be kept up here, and right off the bat the atmosphere was sure to do this.  Really, it felt like this episode was more suited for part one of series 6, as it really was on the darker side of things.  Oh well, this didn’t come into the picture right away, and we were treated with a nice bit with the Doctor, Amy, and Rory going door to door looking for George, the frightened boy who really isn’t a boy, well OK he is, but he’s not human.  From there on the problem that has been haunting a lot of the season came back again.

The Doctor and the evil dolls

Rory and Amy really don’t do much in episodes that aren’t written by Moffat.  They were rather useless in “The Doctor’s Wife,” which meant taking time away from the Doctor and Idris.  I’m getting incredibly tired of the whole companions dieing thing, especially with Rory always being killed off to come back that episode, and at this point even the jokes about it are getting old.  Hopefully next season we’ll be able to start new without Amy and Rory and without this story arc that needs to end this season.  OK, now with that out of the way let’s go back to the good in this episode.

I was actually really into the story.  Sure, it sort of missed the emotional impact mark it tried to hit for, but that didn’t make it any less good.  Matt Smith put on another stunning performance of how he can seamlessly go from serious to quirky.  The bit with the elevator taking them to a different “world” was very much inspired by Silent Hill as said before, and this translated throughout the entire episode since event the Doctor became completely helpless at the end.   In a way, I was reminded of “The Lodger” since the Doctor knew there was something very powerful right in front of him, there was a focus on the Doctor’s dialogue to get him through most of the story, and a perception filter yet again.  Well OK, it does seem as if I didn’t like the episode but I actually did, it’s just that I don’t want to watch anything not related to the story arc, especially this far in the series.  I’ll be watching the episode again, and hopefully this time I’ll like the ending better, as it was rather rushed to fit into the last 10 minutes at the Doctor instantly knew what to do.  It was rather odd since he spent the whole episode figuring it out, took a little break while in the dollhouse, and instantly knew what to do, making it feel rushed.

Still, I’m going to give it a 7.5/10.  It was really engaging until the last quarter, where it became rather rushed.  The acting was solid, though Rory should take the cue from Amy and actually make a decision rather than always being nervous.  I know next week is mostly an Amy and Rory episode, but it’s back to the main arc and time streams out of sync, so I’m thinking it’ll get me back on track and will be sure to deliver.

 

** Spoiler Alert, don’t read if you haven’t

New coat, why the new coat?

already watched the episode **

Well Doctor Who is back for part 2 of series 6.  Exciting stuff this is.  Now I’m assuming most people that have been following the show since Moffat took over have seen this episode, so I won’t bore you with a long review.  Instead, let’s hit on what I found the most interesting (and you probably thought the same as well), shall we?

First, the one part that was sort of confusing.  It was never really explained how Amy and Rory made it to where they were in the beginning.  Why wasn’t River there with them?  At the end of the last episode she was supposed to get everyone back home and safe, but where did she go off to?  Honestly, this isn’t anything I’m worrying about since Moffat’s in charge, so it’ll most likely be explained at some point.  I’m assuming the same will go for his new coat, which if it wasn’t a Moffat story I’d just assume was something the Doctor picked up along his travels, but knowing Moffat there’s an actual reason behind all this.  Speaking of the Doctor, I would like an episode that has him as more of a focus, but for the sake of the story everything fit in this one and we had a lot of River, which is always nice.  Truth be told, there might be a few little things to add to this list, but after seeing the episode only once I mainly focused on all the good of the episode, which I’m thinking that’s because it was basically a really well done story to get viewers back into the swing of things.

OK, now that that’s out of the way it’s time to get on with the good and/or excellent parts of the episode.  River oh River, how much more amazing you get each time.  Seeing how she actually was raised to kill the Doctor and how she disguised herself to grow up with Amy and Rory was rather brilliant from a writing standpoint.  Needless to say, Alex Kingston was, as always at top notch performance, but seeing her have to play River differently was really entertaining and a true showing of her ability as an actress.  The same goes for all the actors/actresses, as all of them have really come into their roles.

Unlike the first half of the season, this episode brought some humor, but it never seemed forced.  The scene where the River was trying to shoot the Doctor was a subtle type of funny, as it showed how well the Doctor knew River and played at how they’d eventually turn out in later, or rather previous episodes (time lines, it gets complicated).  Really, there were so many quick, one liners that I’ll need to watch it again to remember them all, but it was funny when they kept making fun of Rory when they were kids and Amy thinking he was gay.  Still, there was a lot of seriousness going on.

Ah, nice to see the Doctor and the Ponds again

Just like the last episode (and really a lot of Moffat’s episodes) the last fifteen minutes were absolutely brilliantly written to convey exactly what each character was feeling.  River changing because of the Doctor and giving him her regenerations was a great way to show how she can no longer regenerate and how they will eventually become closer.  Plus, it leaves open the possibility for the Doctor to not have to worry about his twelfth and final regeneration coming up (then again, the Master’s always cheating death, so the Doctor probably can, if not the BBC will loose arguably their biggest show).  However, Moffat doesn’t try to overplay the emotional scenes like RTD used to (oh yes End of Time, I’m looking right at the last fifteen minutes of David Tennant crying for no reason), so it all felt natural.

Basically, this was a fantastic episode.  I ended up saying more than I wanted to, but there was just so much going on that it’s hard not to go on about it.  The problem now is that I’m so interested in River, the Silence, Madam Kovarian, and the Doctor’s new coat that watching a stand alone episode will do nothing but make me want more of the story arc episodes back.  This episode did everything I wanted it to, mainly not drag and give us more River.  Here’s to the rest of the season being as great as this episode, starting with next week with Night Terrors!

If there was anything I missed that you felt was important, please post it in the comments and I’ll definitely get back ASAP.

Here we are, another trailer for the 2nd part of this series.  The first thing I noticed is that the BBC is most likely going to go broke thanks to Doctor Who.  Seriously, this season’s special effects have far exceeded any other season, and now we have everything from pterodactyls (ok, probably taken from the Torchwood special effects files, but still), pyramids, and what appears to be different planets (which has yet to be properly explored in new who).  Effects aside, I’m hoping that Steven Moffat knows what he’s doing, because I don’t want to have these arcs going over into yet another season.  Sure, I actually do prefer his two seasons as lead writer to the RTD years, but he should go into something new for the next season.

Now that that’s out of the way, it actually does look like we’ll be getting a rather great 2nd half to an already great first half.  It may be the darker tone, but the Matt Smith years have been nothing short of amazing.  He really is the best of the new Doctors, and is very reminiscent of the Doctors of old.  The only thing I hope the second half does better is having less of Amy and Rory and more of the Doctor.  After all, they were next to useless in “The Doctor’s Wife,” which is a shame since it took away time that could have been spent with some more great dialogue between the Doctor and the TARDIS.

Do I think  Moffat can wrap up the season and the story arcs within six episodes?  Well yes, and if he doesn’t it will most likely leave a lot of fans to turn away from him and the show next season (especially the fans who aren’t true fans but watch it because they think it’s an ok show).  If all goes right then this should be the best season of Doctor Who since the reboot in 2005.  August 27, here I come, allons-y, I mean geronimo, wait no I don’t like that, oh well fezzes are cool, then again so are stetsons, and bow ties, would you like a jelly baby?  Whichever catch phrase is yours be sure to tune in August 27 for the return of series 6 in “Let’s Kill Hitler.”