Sunday, November 24, 2013

Spoiler-filled Doctor Who 50th Anniversary episode

Promo Image for the episode from SFX
Let's just jump right into it. First off, this is a massive spoiler-filled review! Do not read this if you have not seen the episode!

Everyone else gone? Okay, let me get the complaints out of the way: I think the fan service was laid on a bit too thick. I love Doctor Who, but man, this made even me cringe at times! There was no real reason for the Doctor to marry the queen. Having Baker appear was kind of strained (though, see below) and I thought the epilogue was kind of painful.

That's really it. I have no other complaints.

The rest of the episode was excellent. I loved the realization that being together meant that they could solve problems using all of the time between them. Nice touch. The humor was all top-notch, and the dry little hints here and there were excellent (e.g. the scarf that the scientist is wearing... it's not just like Tom Baker's scarf, it is his scarf. He likely gave it to her when he arrived, which is why she's so convinced that the doctor will save her... she's essentially his companion).

Now, about Rose. Do you think she was in this episode? I'm pretty sure that she was, and I'm equally sure that we have not heard the last of the Bad Wolf. Did you notice the glow in her eyes that was the same as the glow in Rose/Bad Wolf's eyes from the Tardis? She claims to be the soul of the Moment... and that might be true. Who is to say that the Moment isn't what's at the heart of the Tardis? Time travel is messy.

Second, I don't expect it to be the case, but it would be kind of amusing if Tom Baker isn't playing the Doctor at the end. He convinced the Doctor to go look for Galifray, which is no small change in the Doctor's agenda. Is there an easier way to convince the Doctor to listen to you than to assume the form of one of his regenerations?

One thing I really don't understand is why Hurt regenerates. I get that it prevents them bringing him back, so it smells like a contractual thing, but what's the reason in the show? The Doctor doesn't regenerate unless he's dying, and we saw no evidence that he was dying in the episode...

Another out-of-place bit: The doctor can remember every detail of every alien race he's ever met, but he's managed to make himself forget some life-changing events according to this episode... again, not buying the narrative. I think there's more to come on this story, and I suspect more involvement of Bad Wolf.

Anyway, great episode and a fun time. I'm looking forward to having more questions answered!