Monday, June 28, 2010

Doctor Who S05E13-The Big Bang

With The Doctor trapped in the Pandorica and everyone else not doing do well, there is very little keeping the universe together. The only way to prevent the erasure of Earth, the last world left in existence is to pull off the ultimate gamble: a gamble involving an age old android, a past and present Amy Pond, and a fez sporting genius. But even with all of this in place, who will be forced to make the ultimate sacrifice to restore the entire universe? Is this the end of the road for The Doctor?

Hard to believe it’s been thirteen weeks already. But now we’ve come to the end of Series Five and Steven Moffat has been left with no choice but to pull out all the stops to make this the best finale ever. Does he succeed? Oh yes, even with a few things unanswered.

Not going to lie, you are going to have to be one sharp viewer and practitioner of Doctor Who speak, (did I really just say that?) to keep up with the massive amounts of back and forth time jumps and planning scenarios. Scratch that. If you’ve seen enough Doctor Who, or even watched a few episodes of Leverage, then you should be fine keeping up with all of the action.

“The Big Bang” threw a lot at us and left me wondering how everyone was going to factor into the story. This episode was mostly a character driven story, rather than the intergalactic showdowns that were the staple of Russell T. Davies finales. Sure, we get one Dalek causing havoc for our heroes. But in the end, this episode is about the ties that bind The Doctor, Amy, Rory and River together.

The story of Rory and the Pandorica was very sweet and very romantic. Despite The Doctor’s concerns that Rory would go insane from eons of silence, the plastic replica of Rory stuck with his girl til her reawakening. Anyone who has ever questioned the relationship between Amy and Rory, even gone so far as to call it Rose and Mickey 2.0, should slap themselves silly as this episode practically defined love conquers all in regards to this lovely couple.

Oh Matt Smith. You’ve come so far since your one minute cameo at the end of “The End of Time Part 2”. This episode was Mr. Smith’s tour de force and his best performance as The Doctor yet. Of course you can thank Steven Moffat for giving him such good words to say, but it’s Matt Smith and his ability to warp back and forth between fez wearing mad genius (I like Fez’s, Fez’s are cool-my best friend’s favorite line, mine too), to dying yet still clever hero, to the old man who tearfully reminisces about his life thus far during his Eleventh incarnation. Matt Smith has time and time again proved why he is such a fantastic actor to bear the title of The Doctor. But this episode was his…well I could go on but I think I would end up repeating myself constantly, so I think you get the point. The guy is awesome, nuff said. I also like how they stuck with The Doctor observing events from his Eleventh incarnation rather than going back further and further. “I hate reruns,” he says refusing to go back further than his first meeting with Amy. I like that though. It’s Moffat’s way of saying “not yet”, that they shouldn’t fall back on the old stories just yet since they’ve still got a little ways to go in establishing their own Doctor Who world.

The grand finale reminded me a lot of The Never Ending Story, the scene where Bastian and the Empress begin to reset the world based on Batsian’s imagination. Likewise, Amy’s memory is key in restoring The Doctor, Rory and River to existence. You can’t help but feel happy for Amy as she gets her husband, her parents, and her best friend back, a nice payoff and happy ending for the once loneliest girl in existence. Oh and I must say, Amy looked so lovely in her wedding dress.

But after the wedding, we got a couple of reminders of unanswered questions. River Song, who was at her most sexiest and most bad ass in this episode, hinted the time was coming when everything would change between her and The Doctor, presumably when they finally hook up. Then there’s the matter of “the silence” which I totally forgot about after it popped up in “Vampires in Venice”. Nevertheless, the finale left us with no clear answers to these hints, which is no doubt going to make the wait for Series Six all the more unbearable. And now The Doctor has a married couple with him on the TARDIS, heading off to new adventures with a smile on their face. Ladies and Gentlemen, a round of applause for Doctor Who Series Five, written by Steven Moffat and starring Matt Smith as The Doctor and Karen Gillan as Amy Pond. It’s been a somewhat uneven but wild ride this season and most definitely ended with a big bang. But there’s no doubt now, I cannot wait for Series Six, I…want…MORE!!!

Next Time-Doctor Who returns Christmas 2010


Doctor Who S05E12-The Pandorica Opens

The Doctor and Amy land in the year 102. A.D. where they encounter a Roman legion and River Song, who delivers a message to The Doctor, one that has taking thousands of years to reach him. The haunting image of an exploding TARDIS leads the trio to Stone Hedge, where they find the mysterious Pandorica. Whatever is housed inside is attracting every single enemy The Doctor has ever faced. But even with this vast army of villainy surrounding him, The Doctor doesn’t realize until it’s too late that the greatest threat to him may not be an enemy at all.

It has been a while since Doctor Who has had several consecutive good episodes in a row leading up to its finale. Both “Vincent and The Doctor” and “The Lodger” reminded us why Series Five has been such an astounding success up until this point. And now we get the one episode we hoped would never come, the beginning of the end. Not that that’s a bad thing, but it just feels like last week that we saw the TARDIS crash into little Amy Pond’s back yard. Eh, enough of that, onto the review.

What a fantastic opening. It was great to see all of these fantastic characters from throughout the season realize the importance of Van Gogh’s painting and work to somehow get it to The Doctor. Even if they were only in it for a couple of minutes, it was good to see Churchill, Bracewell, Van Gogh and Liz 10 once again. I don’t think the show has done something like this yet and I hope they do it again in future series. Oh and we get a reference to a “handsome Time Agent” whose vortex manipulator is passed on to River Song. Sigh, I hope we get to see a Captain Jack Harkness/Eleventh Doctor team up one day.

The mystery of the Pandorica kept me guessing right up until the end. When the entire rouges gallery of Doctor Who showed up, I was beginning to guess that the person trapped inside was the only guy missing from the party…but then again I think it would have been too much to have John Simm return as The Master this soon. And sadly, outside of Daleks and Cybermen (great to see them again btw), my knowledge of the old villains is very limited, so I couldn’t fathom a guess as to who would be inside the Pandorica. But I’ll cover that in a moment.

RORY’S BACK!!!! I always had a feeling that he would return in some shape or form during the season finale and even though he did end up being an Auton and ended up shooting Amy at the end, it was great to see him back in the story again. I would have never thought I would care about Rory when he was originally introduced as a sort of Mickey 2.0, but his character has literally gone through so much this season and has earned the respect of The Doctor and his fiancée that he has truly shinned as a great companion. Arthur Darvill did a great job dealing with all of Rory’s conflicts and sadness. Watching him break down when he realized Amy couldn’t remember him was heartbreaking and you really felt bad for the guy.

The end of the episode had me so freaking baffled. The Pandorica was meant for The Doctor? The Rouge’s Galley (or the Alliance, I guess) deciding to save the universe? Amy’s mind being used to create the trap? My head was spinning. And then there’s The Doctor, powerless to do anything as he is sealed away. Matt Smith worked his magic once again, forcing The Doctor to realize that there was no way in hell his enemies would ever listen to his pleas, no matter how true they were in regards to the universe’s impending collapse. Then…Rory was found out to be an Auton, Amy gets shot, River is trapped on an exploding TARDIS and the universe gets erased. Now THAT is how you do a cliffhanger. What a fiend/genius Steven Moffat would have been if he had just left it at that for the seven month hiatus? So many questions to be answered, the most prominent being HOW THE HELL ARE THEY GONNA GET OUT OF THIS ONE???? Here’s hoping Moffat delivers on one heck of a finale, cause I don’t think the bar has ever been raised this high to deliver one.

Next Time-No preview for next week…so who knows.


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Doctor Who S05E11-The Lodger

In a tiny two story flat in Colchester, strange things are going on in the upstairs flat: flashing lights, loud crashes and the occasional small scream as well as the black mildew building up in downstairs flat of Craig Owens. Poor Craig has other problems to worry about, such as telling the girl of his dreams how much he loves her and finding a new roommate. While one of those problems needs careful planning, the other finds a solution when a mysterious and odd man called The Doctor turns up at Craig’s doorstep with the offer to room with him.

After last weeks surprisingly good Van Gogh episode, I was a little worried that “The Lodger” would be a big letdown. Thankfully, this clever little piece of unusual Doctor Who, penned by Gareth Roberts, was a very fun episode to watch. This is thanks in no small part to the companions du jour (sort of) with The Doctor this week. Craig Owens is a very likable human character with very human problems and even though The Doctor tries to help out he ends up outshining poor Craig every time. In a just as bad state is Craig’s friend Sophie, who clearly wants to hear Craig profess his love for her but is too shy to admit it herself. Both characters make for great one off characters in the Doctor Who universe and I kind of hope we see them again in the future. BTW, was it just me or did Sophie look a lot like Yvonne Hartman, the former commander and chief of Torchwood One we saw back in Series Two?

If there was one theme to best subtitle this episode with it’s “being human”. This week we saw a lot of normal human problems and woes with Craig and Sophie but we also saw The Doctor tasked with the duty of blending in as a normal human. Surprisingly enough, even though he may not realize it, from making a killer omelet to “bending it like beckham” to succeeding as a customer service caller, The Doctor shines in every human activity he attempts. Granted there is still that awkward yet lovably fun Matt Smith touch added to each scene which proves even more why Mr. Smith is continuing to be one of the best Doctor’s out there.

The mystery of upstairs was actually a little less interesting and I found myself wanting to see more of The Doctor’s interactions with Craig and Sophie, the normal humans. I almost thought that Craig and Sophie would have ended up traveling in the time machine upstairs. However, the fact that they did hook up and decide to do more of their lives on Earth was a nice ending for them. Like The Doctor once said, “That’s the one adventure I could never have.” It was an even better moment when Craig let The Doctor keep his keys to the flat, good times.

All in all, it sucks to realize that this is the last episode before the big two part finale. Despite some rocky episodes in the middle, Series Five has surpassed all expectations and then some. And while this episode may have had a rather disappointing underdeveloped “monster of the week story”, we still got a great story out of great one off characters. Forwards and onwards to the finale.

(On a quick note. The review for “The Pandorica Opens” will be one week late since I will be on vacation in a place with poor internet. So I’ll probably end up reviewing the final two episodes of the series, “The Pandorica Opens” and “The Big Bang” at the same time in two weeks.)

Next Week-The return of River Song and the appearance of The Pandorica. The final arc has begin.


Saturday, June 5, 2010

Doctor Who S05E10-Vincent and The Doctor

Upon spotting a strange image within a famous painting, The Doctor and Amy travel to Arles, France 1889 to meet with the man who created the painting, Vincent Van Gogh. Vincent is a man hated by the public, whose paintings go unnoticed and his eccentric attitude scoffed at. However, he is also the only man who can see a dangerous creature invisible to others that is on the loose. It’s up to The Doctor and Amy, the only people who believe him, to give Vincent a reason to fight and prevent more tragedy, in both the lives of the villagers as well as himself.

“Vincent and The Doctor” was a very rare and totally amazing episode, probably my most favorite of the series thus far. It’s nice to see that things have not exactly gotten back to business as usual in the aftermath of last weeks events. The Doctor is clearly feeling guilty for the death of Rory and subsequent erasure from Amy’s memory and is trying to cope with it without letting Amy in on why he is being so nice. It was odd, almost frightening, to see Amy so chipper. Makes the absence of Rory all the more painful and I can’t wait to see how that little plot element is tied up in the next couple of weeks. But we should focus more on the meat of this week first, shouldn’t we?

At last, The Doctor has met a man who is willing to believe things only he himself could possibly believe in. Tony Curran plays Van Gogh brilliantly, switching back and forth between visionary and troubled soul at the drop of a pin. His interactions with The Doctor and Amy were fun to watch, waxing philosophies and wackiness with one and flirting with the other. Matt Smith and Karen Gillan gelled very will with him. Curran also has most of the episodes best lines and just listening to him belt out Van Gogh’s thoughts and visions of the world around him were simply inspiring. It’s only now that I think of Rutger Hauer’s infamous line from “Blade Runner”. “I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe” is an excellent subtitled description for Vincent Van Gogh.

But luckily, Van Gogh wasn’t 100% visionary but more like 90%. The other 10% was the man of action. Seeing him spar with the “invisible” enemy was well done. Actually, every character’s interaction with the Krafayis was well choreographed. The Krafayis was nicely designed, the parrot and polar bear images The Doctor first gets a scan of fit the creature perfectly. I liked the end revelation/parallel of Van Gogh and the Krafayis. The fact that the creature was blind yet could be seen by a man who could see everything was both touching and sad especially when the creature was killed in the end.

After the death of the Krafayis, I was curious as to how they were going to spend the last ten minutes of the episode. The last ten minutes of this weeks adventure were the most spectacular moments of the series since it’s resurrection in 2005. The Doctor and Amy taking Vincent Van Gogh to France 2010 to see his works was a real tear jerker, not just for Vincent but for myself as well. Not only did Vincent get to see that everyone didn’t hate his work was made even more emotional when The Doctor got the museum curator, played by big time British actor Bill Nighy (who, if your up on your scifi cinema, also stared with Tony Curran in Underworld: Evolution (good movie)). It’s moments like this Doctor Who has rarely done and probably won’t for some time since it worked this well. The series has had so many dark moments in the last few weeks that it needed a scene like this. And yes, Amy was sad when she returned to the present, expecting to see several new paintings by a clearly inspired Van Gogh, only to learn that he still committed suicide. But The Doctor’s speech to her about the good times and the bad times was very heartwarming. The final image of the painting made for Amy by Van Gogh was icing on the cake and a sign of a well done episode.

I know I’ve bragged about how good certain Doctor Who episodes are, either because of their production design, visual effects, or their acting (Series 3’s “The Shakespeare Code” comes to mind). But “Vincent and The Doctor”, earns a spot in my list of Top Ten Doctor Who episodes EVER!!! With big named guest stars, a spectacular creature and all the usual Doctor zaniness and zen, this was a bright and vibrant episode the series needed to have. This is an episode that needs immediate re watching and praise. You’ll come away from your TV or computer with a smile on your face and a possible tear in your eye. If you ever have a really bad day (kind of like I have the last couple of days) find this episode and you’ll have a reason to look on the bright side.

Next Week-Issues with the room upstairs…and guess who’s just waiting to become the new flat mate?


Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Doctor Who S05E09-Cold Blood

The Doctor heads down to the center of the Earth to meet with this new tribe of hibernating Silurians and negotiate the return of Amy and the other human hostages. Hostility is high on both sides. The female guardians of the city are thirsty for a war and Rory’s small band of humans is desperate for the return of their loved ones. It all comes down to one epic battle that will decide the future of both species for years to come. And while it looks like smooth sailing for humans and Silurians alike, The Doctor’s future yields some unexpected new developments.

After last weeks fairly slow plodded episode, “Cold Blood” continues to run with the same pace but amps things up towards the end for a fairly spectacular ending. Now I know I gave good reasons for each of the members in Rory’s group to kill Alaya. But come on, was there any doubt in anyone’s mind that Ambrose was going to be the one who killed her? Plus, to top it all off, she convinces her father to enact a failsafe should things go wrong AND she continues to threaten hostilities. If there was any character to not feel sorry for in this whole 2-part affair, the award goes to Ambrose. Even her son resented her action. That’s when you know you’ve really dug your own grave there.

We got to see plenty of Silurians this week, or rather only two or three of them and multiples of one (Restac and Alaya came from the same genetic code). Malohkeh the scientist was my favorite and was a proper foil to the more militaristic Restac. Eldane the politician was another favorite of mine. But his scenes with Amy and Nasreen negotiating Silurian settlement of the surface were kind of boring, hell even Amy looked bored as the proceedings went on. Luckily though they got all of that stuff done before the halfway mark so we could get to the meat of the episode, which was the result of Restac’s coup d’etat and Ambrose’s murder of Alaya.

The last twenty minutes of the episode were very exciting, filled with lots of running and quick solutions to the laser carrying lizards and the gigantic drill. Tony’s decision to stay behind was nice and I liked how he forgave Ambrose for her actions before he went into stasis. Nasreen also got a great send off, deciding to stay with her man and the discovery she made. She and The Doctor made a good team and it kind of sucks we won’t see her after this since she’s going into that uber long thousand year hibernation with Tony.

I had a feeling that Rory was probably going to die sometime soon. However, I didn’t expect his death to be so sad and well done. Sacrificing himself to save The Doctor from Restac’s final laser blast showed his devotion to both the man and Amy. But then he got touched by energy from another one of those pesky cracks, erasing him from Amy’s mind. Karen Gillan played the scene beautifully, showing her helplessness and general sadness over the loss of her fiancé and the fact that The Doctor could do nothing to do about it. The fact that Rory is now erased from Amy’s mind makes Rory’s death even harder to bare. Although I can imagine that he might return in some form or another in the season finale, which is only four weeks away (wow how time flies).

Oh and then there’s that shattered piece of the TARDIS The Doctor pulled from the crack. So that explosion either originates from the TARDIS or the TARDIS get caught in the blast. Either way, it was a heart stopping moment seeing that fried chunk of TARDIS in The Doctor’s hand. The next few weeks can’t come soon enough.

Next Week-Teaming up with Vincent Van Gogh to fight off a deadly foe.


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Doctor Who S05E08-The Hungry Earth

The Doctor, Amy and Rory land in the year 2020 and run into a group of people attempting to drill deeper into the Earth’s crust than any human in history. However, once the drill hits 21km, mysterious holes begin appearing in the drilling facility. Something is drilling upwards and claiming human hostages, including Amy. With only Rory and a small village of scared individuals to help him, The Doctor must race to unravel the mystery of the somewhat familiar creatures causing this havoc before fighting breaks out and all hell breaks loose.

Like “Vampires in Venice” to “The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone,” “The Hungry Earth” felt like a step back in quality after the amazing “Amy’s Choice”. That’s not to say that this was a bad outing, but this is the first of a two part story and we had to build momentum this week before the fireworks go off next week.

I was a little surprised at how “Amy lite” this episode was. Amy has been such a driving force for many of the episodes thus far, last weeks episode was even an Amy centered story for example. I never thought they’d cut back on her story time or her overall screen time for that matter. Amy is quickly captured and only seen two more brief times before the episode ends. Again, a little shocking but her absence works to build on the other character filtering this story. Nasreen was my favorite character of the bunch. At first she was a little skeptical of The Doctor (honestly, who isn’t really when they first meet him) but then her sense of adventure kicks in and she eventually follows him to the underground to confront The Silurians (more on them in a second). I like her but I can’t help but feel there is some “hidden” quality we haven’t seen yet that will be revealed next week. The other pivotal characters this week were Tony and his daughter Ambrose. Tony was a good sidekick for Nasreen but Ambrose, while understandably concerned for the safety of her son, came of as annoying. If anyone is going to do something stupid next week that ignites a war, she is at the top of my list (again I’ll continue on this point momentarily).

This week saw the return of another old villain of Doctor Who lore. The reptilian Silurians design wise reminded me of the Draqs seen in 1983’s Enemy Mine (starring Dennis Quaid and Lou Gossitt Jr., great movie btw). We only got to see one of them clearly this week and that one is the strangely attractive warrior Alaya, wow cute with a pretty name to match. Alaya, as aforementioned, is a fighter and I was fully sold on her claims that her people would bring the fire to eliminate mankind no matter what. Her chilling foresight as to how that will come about had me guessing like crazy. Alaya claims someone will kill her and thus ignite the war. At first I was sure it would be Ambrose, but then again Tony has been infected by some sort of Sullarian sting and needs a cure and Rory wants Amy back (that bit with the wedding ring makes me think he might bite it in the end next week), plus Ambrose wants her son back but seems more keen on pulling the trigger now. All have legit reasons for wanting to kill Alaya and next week we will find out who does.

I should also take a quick moment to note that this little two parter is courtesy of Chris Chibnall, head writer for another little series called Torchwood. He is an outstanding writer who has written many of Torchwood’s best episodes so far and I’m really looking forward to how his massive build up this week pays off next week. Again, “The Hungry Earth” wasn’t a lame episode, I really want to see next weeks episode so badly because of the last ten minutes. Plus, you got to see The Doctor fire a slingshot of all things and wear his sunglasses at night, nice. This week was all about the build up and next week is sure to give us all a proper payoff for sitting patiently through it.

Next Week-Stop the Silurians, prevent a war, have a beer (ok maybe that last one is stretching it).


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Doctor Who S05E07-Amy’s Choice

The Doctor, Amy and Rory find themselves floating back and forth between two different worlds: one is set on the present day Tardis and the other is set five years in the future back on Earth with a happily married Amy and Rory awaiting the birth of their first child. Complicating matters is the appearance of the mysterious “Dream Lord” and his dangerous game for the trio. Together, they must decipher which world is real and quickly before one specific crisis on each claims their lives. And with opinions divided on how real each world feels, this isn’t going to be the easiest game ever.

Series Five continues to deliver the goods with expert storytelling and lots of adrenaline inducing excitement. And this weeks episode continued with those praises. “Amy’s Choice” was a terrific outing that presented us with a very unique scenario that makes for the best Doctor Who material. The jumping back and forth between worlds could have become tedious and annoying after a while but writer Simon Nye gives the story the balance needed to keep the story moving flawlessly from one point to the next without loosing any momentum. I think it was obvious to any viewer which world was the obvious choice, but then there was that slap in the face realization that everyone was wrong, even the viewer. Just goes to show that if you think you know this show real well, you haven’t seen anything yet.

I’ve been bragging about the story so far. What about our time traveling trio and the villain du jour? I have to give a quick cap on the Dream Lord. For a while, just watching him on screen tormenting our heroes I could help but think of Michael Caine’s famous quote from “The Dark Knight”, “Some men aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn”. Up until the big reveal of his true identity, I figured the Dream Lord for the kind of guy who tormented just for amusement and interest rather than personal gain. But again, the big reveal at the end (which I will leave spoiler free for a change, you really should watch and see for yourself) threw me for a loop and gave it a bit more of a darker edge to the character. And hats off to Toby Jones, who was amazing in the role of the villain.

The title of the episode is the key to the story as a whole. Torn between The Doctor’s scientific analysis and Rory’s personal desires, Amy is the one who has to make the final call in this dangerous game. Maybe it was just me, but I was totally convinced the five years later world was the definite fake just because it seemed to perfect and quiet, something this show doesn’t do a lot of in terms of the latter and occasionally on the former. Rory wants the quiet life and The Doctor the louder, more exciting one. Both Matt Smith and Arthur Darvill were good with their performances and were very convincing playing the defense of their choices.

I kind of feel bad for Rory and Amy. Even when Amy realizes how much she really loves Rory and wants to be with him, I can’t help but feel that it is always going to be The Doctor she loves truly (like Rose with Mickey and The Tenth Doctor or, better example, Gwen Cooper with Rhys and Captain Jack Harkness on Torchwood). Still if Gwen could make it work with Rhys now that I think about it, it could work out with Rory. Plus, The Doctor seems to not want to belittle Rory, but do his best to keep Amy off of himself and more attached to her fiancé, which is a very good call in this case. Still, just as with last week, I don’t think this is the last we’ve heard of Amy’s romantic woes, not by a long shot.

“Amy’s Choice” was a fun episode from beginning to end and I can’t remember the last time I honestly bragged this much about an individual episode of Doctor Who (really not since I saw Series Three’s “The Shakespeare Code” for the first time , I should post a review for that now). Series Five is well past it’s half way mark and is doing an amazing job most people thought would be impossible to accomplish after David Tennant’s departure. This show is still as awesome as when it first came back on the air and this episode is plenty evidence of that.

Next Week-Drilling to the center of the Earth should be a straight shot down. Then why is something drilling upwards to the surface?


Monday, May 10, 2010

Doctor Who S05E06-Vampires in Venice

In order to get Amy back in love with her fiancé Rory, The Doctor decides to take the two of them on a romantic getaway to Venice, Italy in 1580. But romance is not the main course of the day as all three travelers on separate occasions encounter mysterious girl, robbed in white with sharp fangs and a strong distaste for the sun. There are vampires in Venice, or at least that is the initial belief. But once Amy infiltrates the mysterious Calvierri School for Girls, she learns that these mysterious bloodsucking females may be the least of everyone’s worries when she discovers the full scope of their plans for the city.

Vampires in Venice is a decent episode for the new series, decent being the word of choice since it comes nowhere near as amazing as the last two weeks two part story. The dual opening is interesting choice to start off with a bit of horror in the form of the vampiric Calvierri girls claiming another victim and the awkward humor in the form of The Doctor party crashing Rory’s bachelor party to get his attention. To be honest, I liked the second part of the opening better. It was awkward and funny and was a better place to start off after Amy’s Doctor seduction session last week.

I was a little worried to see Rory on the TARDIS even though I knew it would happen eventually. But cudos to The Doctor for choosing to do so as he doesn’t want to screw up a companions life back home because of her adventures with him. Rory ended up being a pretty good character, even if he is kind of a Mickey knock off. I’m finding it difficult to figure out how his new companion status on the TARDIS will affect the already awesome dynamic between Amy and The Doctor. At the end of the episode, it looks as though Amy chooses Rory and convinces The Doctor to let him tag along, but I’m not convinced this is the end of the subject with this new love triangle.

The villains du jour were the reptilian/vampiric Saturnynians, led by the lovely Rosanna (played by guest star Helen McRory, who, if your up on your Harry Potter alums as I am, played Narcissia Malfoy in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince). I couldn’t help but feel that this group of bloodsuckers were a bit like the characters in 1987’s “The Lost Boys”. The exclusive club meant for chosen ones, ones that every guy wanted to get with but couldn’t. Still, I liked Helen McRory’s Rosanna and her characters interactions with The Doctor. The two big conversations they have in the episode were well written and played out. Plus, she was a sympathetic character. Sure she was trying to drown Venice, but then again she was also trying to repair the damage done to her race by those ever pesky cracks in time. It was a sad ending for her and it sucked to see her meet her fate. A character I was totally Unsympathetic towards was her “son” Francesco. From the moment I set eyes on him I couldn’t wait to see him get his butt kicked, amusingly enough by a double team effort by Amy and Rory. Whereas Rosanna was a cool and calculating opponent, Francesco was just flat out annoying. Although, the “what’d you say about my momma?” look on his face when Rory taunted him was priceless.

I also have to take a second to applaud the Production Team for its work on a very nice looking Venice. After just recently playing Assassin’s Creed II, which is set in Venice, I thought the city was well recreated and it didn’t feel small scale, similar to the work the crew did on Series Four’s “Fires of Pompeii”. The money spent of the production of this show is spent very well indeed, just check out the visually stunning real versions of the Saturnynians.

So what now? Rory’s on the TARDIS and we get our first real glimpse of “the silence,” which to be honest scared the crap out of me. This wasn’t a great follow up to “Time of the Angels/Flesh and Stone”, and to be honest that was going to be a tough one to top. But “Vampires in Venice” was still a lot of fun with Doctor wit (Best Line: “Oh this is Christmas!!!”), decent action, and a sense that things are definitely going to get worse for the Time Lord as the series goes on. Series Five continues to roll on strong and show no sign of slowing down anytime soon.

Next Week-Trapped in a dream world with a pregnant Amy, even The Doctor has to admit, “This is gonna be a tricky one.”


Monday, May 3, 2010

Doctor Who S05E05-Flesh and Stone

Even though The Doctor has moved himself and his dwindling group of survivors up to the Byzantium, The Weeping Angels are right on their tail and multiplying. Making matter worse, not only are the Angels growing stronger, but one of them is manifesting itself inside of Amy. And as if things weren’t tough enough, a new yet oddly familiar threat, one worse than the Weeping Angels themselves has appeared within the ship. As the heart pounding race to the end begins, who will survive this dual onslaught of terror?

The terror factor was amped up tremendously is week on Doctor Who. I will say that as compared to my blink and you’ll miss the episode attitude from last week, this week is was hooked and truly frightened for everyone on the ship. It sucks that Father Octavian (Iain Glen) had to bite the big one this week and his final scene with The Doctor, who stayed with him even though he knew he couldn’t get him out of the Angels grip, was a emotionally gripping one. You really feel for The Doctor this week. Between the return of the crack in the wall and The Weeping Angels he is being pushed to his limit trying to figure out how to stop both before everyone is killed. The scene where he shouts at River because of a lack of ideas really nailed this and Matt Smith did a good job delivering the fear and frustration needed to pull off such a performance.

After her encounter with the digitized Weeping Angel last week, we all knew something was going to happen to Amy in some kind of way. In fact it may have been Amy who had it worse than The Doctor this week. She had not only two foes to face, but three, the third of course being the darkness as she had to walk around blind through a field of Weeping Angels and listen to the remaining Clerics wander off to the light and never return. The poor, poor girl.

And when all was said and done by episodes end, there was the final scene, the other big highlight of the episode. Amy finally revealed to The Doctor that she was getting married…then tried to get him to sleep with her!!! Whoa. I don’t think we’ve ever seen this kind of an attitude in a Doctor Who Companion before. I mean Rose was in love, but she never tried to do that. Still it’s understandable. Amy has loved The Doctor for the better part of her life and to be honest, we all knew she was going to kiss him at some point. The Doctor, however and sadly, does the right thing and says that Amy needs to marry her fiancé, revealed to be Rory. But first he needs to solve the mystery of the crack in the wall and how it is affecting Amy, all by June 26, 2010, which is as I double checked, the date of the Season Finale, nice.

This was a great episode, arguably the best of the series thus far. It has terror, action, suspense and a lot of sexual tension between The Doctor and two women, lucky guy. This is how Doctor Who should always be done. I’m sure we’ll see River Song again, possibly before the end of series five as she hinted to events that might happen then. Plus there’s always the onboard tension in the TARDIS. Now that Amy has tried to openly seduce The Doctor, how will that affect their relationship in the future? Special cudos should go out to Steven Moffat, who has put a lot of the fear factor into his episodes thus far. This week however was when he did it at its grandest and most effective.

Next Week: It’s off to Venice with Amy and Rory. But wait, girls with sharp fangs, pale skin and no reflection in the mirror? To quote The Doctor, “Oh you have got to be kidding me?”


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Doctor Who S05E04-The Time of Angels

River Song lands onboard the TARDIS and orders The Doctor to pursue a strange ship, which crashes on the planet Alfava Metraxis. Turns out, River was tracking the last of the Weeping Angels along with a team of Church Soldiers. However, once in the catacombs of the planet, things take a turn for the worst. The “Maze of the Dead” holds an army of dormant Weeping Angels waiting for the right snack to return them to power. On top of that, a disasterous encounter with a Weeping Angel leaves Amy in a bad psychological state. Trapped in the dark and surrounded by the deadliest creatures in the universe, if there were ever a time for The Doctor to have a brilliant idea, that time is now.

This weeks episode had a lot of material to cover and in a way it did so effectively. But then again was it just me or did this episode go by lightning fast? It felt like the episode had reached the halfway point by the end and I don’t mean the obvious end of part one but the end of the first half of part one. Maybe it was just me, but I will digress and get into the actual episode.

Alex Kingston is back as River Song this week. Obviously this is an earlier version of the woman we saw in the brilliant Series Four Steven Moffat two-parter “Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead”. Even so Ms. Kingston still brings that very flirtatious and adventurous flair to the character. Her introduction to the story is both sexy and brilliant as she walks around the Byzantium in red high heels (a lot of shots of her shows for some reason) in order to get a message out to The Doctor. And when she meets up with him, it’s like no time has passed. Ms. Kingston and Matt Smith play their scenes together brilliantly, bickering like an old married couple (it’s so obvious by this point) then working together with almost linked minds the next.

The Weeping Angels were a truly fierce foe when they were originally introduced in Series Three’s “Blink”, also written by Steven Moffat. Giving them a planet of their own and a darker scarier environment all together was the perfect way to up how dangerous these creatures can be. Moffat gives the Angels more upgrades by revealing their ability to become alive even in a looped video recording. Scarier is the fact that the Angels are getting more violent this time around. They are not time displacing their victims anymore. No now they’re just snapping necks…time to be really afraid. And as for what they are doing to Amy, screwing with her head and all, one has to wonder just how bad it is going to get for her next week.

Aside from the sheer quickness of the story, this was a pretty good episode and a good bounce back from last weeks sort of Dalek downer. River Song is always a good character to have on screen and the Weeping Angels are deadlier than ever. Plus it was a nice bonus to have Iain Glen (Resident Evil: Apocalypse and Resident Evil: Extinction) playing the bishop commander of the Church squadron. Here’s hoping he makes to the end of Part Two. But then again, with the Weeping Angels as your enemy, when it comes to survival all bets are off.

Next Time-The battle goes up to the Byzantium…and the Angels are awakening everywhere.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Doctor Who S05E03-Victory of the Daleks

The Doctor and Amy land in the middle of London during WWII to answer a call from PM Winston Churchill. Churchill reveals his newest hope to win the war, a new breed of iron men who look exactly like The Doctor’s old enemies, The Daleks. The Doctor knows something is wrong and that the whole world is playing right into the hands of the Daleks. And if The Doctor can’t stop them, he faces the horrific rebirth of one of the deadliest empires in the universe.

Victory of the Daleks had some very exciting action set pieces, cudos to the visual effects team for going all out on this one. But somehow I just felt it was more of a step back from the outstanding last two weeks of stories. This could be because it’s the first episode of the season not written by Steven Moffat. But the episode moved fast and even felt like it was leaving several loose plot threads along the way.

I always knew the Daleks were never gone for good, even when they were all seemingly destroyed in Series 4’s Journey’s End. It is a nice test for Matt Smith as The Doctor as I’m sure fans have been waiting for his oppourtunity to face off against classic Doctor Who villains. And while I felt that some of Mr. Smith’s acting was a bit over the top, particularly in the scenes where he is banging a Dalek with a wrench to expose its wickidness, The Doctor’s feelings are understandable. His worst enemy working along side a desperate human race during one of the darkest periods in human history, it does sound too good to be true. I felt that the plan was exposed too quickly and the appearance of “old school” color coded Daleks was both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because the new old look harkens back to how the Daleks first appeared way back when on Doctor Who. It’s a curse cause I just feel they could have done more to show how ruthless they are. Although I must admit their killing of their three non pure upgrades was pretty shocking and a nice close out to the Dalek model we’ve seen since 2005.

While the Dalek story moved at a rapid pace, some of the characters were still given plenty of attention. Ian McNiece was finely cast as Winston Churchill, the man who sheltered England from the Nazi’s during WWII. As aforementioned in my Dalek story analysis, his wanting the Daleks to be a true blessing is understandable considering what is going on around him. But even after he learns of the Daleks true intentions, Churchill is still a man of action rallying his troops to combat the new threat. It is a fine performance by Mr. McNiece I think. Also there is the Dalek built Dr. Bracewell, a man trying to deal with the revelation that he has been a tool for destruction all along, that he wasn’t even real. His scene with The Doctor and Amy as they try to disarm the bomb on his chest is a great scene with Bracewell finding his peace and humanity and Amy revealing some not so subtle hints towards a potential more than just friends liking to The Doctor.

Of course, we got some Top Gun esque action with WWII fighter jets going head to head with a Dalek battleship. It’s fast, it’s furious, it’s a ridiculous concept but nonetheless a fun Doctor Who ridiculous concept. I’m just curious how they got those fighter up and running so fast. Eh, oh well.

Overall, this episode had some great moments and great hints of stuff to come regarding Amy not remembering the Dalek invasion of Earth during Series 4’s The Stolen Earth and Journey’s End. Plus those pesky cracks in time are popping up at the end of every episode now and one can’t help but wonder how Amy is connected. Series 5 is doing a lot of this right, the most important being producing the need in our minds to see more and try to piece together whats coming. This wasn’t a truly fantastic episode like the last two weeks, but is was still fun and interesting nonetheless.

Next Week-Professor River Song returns to the TARDIS with a heart stopping warning…The Weeping Angels are back…don’t blink.


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Doctor Who S05E02-The Beast Below

Far off in the galaxy, long after the sun roasted the Earth, the United Kingdom floats across the stars as a humongous colony ship. Here, the choice to support or forget is the same as choosing between life and death, especially when something lurks in the deep below the streets of London. It is on this island on a ship that Amy Pond will have her first off world adventure with The Doctor. And it is here that she will learn just how much he needs someone to occasionally stop him from making the worst decision imaginable.

Well Series 5 is now in full swing and going at a mile a minute with its momentum. Most, if not all of this momentum, is thanks to the powerhouse team that is Matt Smith and Karen Gillan. In the span of two episodes, Matt Smith has managed to dispel all fears of his tenure as The Doctor. The manic energy he burst onto the screen with in The Eleventh Hour is still here and it looks like he is having a blast delivering the lingo and going from one thought to the next in seconds. He kind of reminded me of Christopher Eccelston’s Ninth Doctor with some of his scenes, especially the more dark ones. As for Ms. Gillan, well she continues to amaze me. In several scenes I could see her channeling The Doctor’s persona as she ventured almost fearlessly into the unknown. But it was her tender scenes with The Doctor that made this episodes latter half work. The scene where Amy works out what needs to be done and defies The Doctor is exactly what an older, more experienced version of The Doctor would have done and by reminding him of this, Amy Pond earns more of The Doctor’s respect as well as my own. They really are as great a team as Steven Moffat hyped them up to be and it will be heartbreaking if they have to split up so soon at the end of the series.

Our hero’s aside, the rest of the episode was a lot of fun to watch. The mystery of the titular beast was fascinating and the revelation of it being a selfless space age whale with a past similar of that to The Doctor’s was a fun twist. I also like the “Empire Strikes Back” omage when The Doctor and Amy were trapped in its mouth and had one of those, “this is no cave” realizations. The Smilies I thought were kind of annoying with the turning of the faces from happy to sad to grrr. Sorry I didn’t feel freaked out by them as I probably should have been. Of course we also had another companion in the form of Liz 10, the sexy gun totting Queen of England. It was also kind of fun to hear her talk about The Doctor’s long…er…history with the royalty of England, including a reference to Series 2’s “Tooth and Claw” where The Tenth Doctor and Rose were knighted and then banished from England. Liz’s story was as sad as the rest of the people onboard the ship who had to forget to stay alive. It’s just more of the great drama the Steven Moffat is good at writing.

As icing on the cake, we got some more hints at what is to come later on in the series. A crack similar to the one in Amy’s old room popped up again on the ship as the whale headed off on its course. I should also take a quick second to say the Space Whale looked amazing, my hats off to the special effects team for a job well done. Oh and the appearance of Ian McNiece as Winston Churchill being watched over by an old enemy, my blood is boiling with excitement for next week. Again to those who might be reading this and not watching cause David Tennant’s not there, Get off your butts, dry your tears and turn your TV’s back on cause the best is yet to come. I’m sure even Mr. Tennant is proud.

Next Time-You can never keep them down for good. THE DALEKS ARE BACK!!! Let’s see how Number Eleven fares against an upgraded version of his oldest foes.


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Doctor Who S05E01-The Eleventh Hour

Amy Pond once met a man who fell into her backyard in a tiny blue box. He promised to take her with him five minutes after they met. Years later, this mysterious stranger storms back into her life…but not to make good on him promise, at least not yet. Barely holding on after his latest regeneration, The Doctor must convince Amy to trust him if he is to save the world in twenty minutes from a vicious escaped convict. The price of failure is the roasting of Planet Earth. The new adventure has begun.

Four months ago, many of us shed a tear when David Tennant uttered his final words as The Doctor, “I don’t’ want to go.” Then we watched him regenerate and we got an all too brief yet interesting first look at Matt Smith, a.k.a The Eleventh Doctor. As we watched him falling to Earth in his burning TARDIS screaming, “Geronimo,” we were left to wondering if this young hotshot could continue the role whose bar had been raised considerably. I am here to announce that one full length episode later, I think we have a winner folks.

While I am sure there are still many people out there, myself included, who will always miss David Tennant and remember him as “our Doctor,” Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor is everything his predecessor was with a bit of a twist. After crashing into the backyard of young Amy Pond, he bursts forth running around with manic energy (granted this could still be attributed to his still regenerating state). It’s the same guy with a new face and a somewhat more…sure of himself personality. I like Matt Smith and think he will carry on The Doctor’s legacy well. It was also a nice proper introduction at the end when we see his previous ten incarnations flash on screen before he steps forward in his new threads. Most Badass Entrance Ever!!!

Of course we must touch on Amy Pond. Ever since I first saw the first images of her in Doctor Who Magazine I’ve fallen head over heels for her character. And now having seen her in action I have more reason to like her. Amy, played by Karen Gillan, is a breath of fresh air for The Doctor. She’s a feisty Scottish red head who’s got a lot of spirit and has a great take charge attitude. Her questioning The Doctor at every turn will definitely be a nice spin on the usual Doctor/Companion relationship. Like everyone else she’s a bit unsure of traveling with The Doctor but after a couple of episodes I think we are going to see a nice bond form between the two. I did think it was a nice story twist to start their friendship off when she was a child, a nice nod to Steven Moffat’s Series 2 story “The Girl in the Fireplace”.

Speaking of Steven Moffat, I should touch on his first story as head writer for the show. Mr. Moffat gives Matt Smith’s first story a proper injection of energy with all the running around. I did think that some of the spots where we simply stopped for introductions to the other characters kind of killed the pacing a bit. But once it picked back up with the running again it worked fine. The introduction of (Amy relative?) Jeff and Amy’s Boyfriend Rory establish that we will visit present day Earth again every now and then as with previous companions. Rory I felt was kind of a Mickey knock off, but it’s still to early to tell with him. Oh and Prisoner Zero…a python that can take the form of others. Not as formidable or memorable a villain as some of Moffat’s other creatures but still you’ve got to love its interactions with the new Doctor.

So now we have a new Doctor, a new TARDIS, a new Sonic Screwdriver, a new companion (whose going to get married?) and a new set of adventures to look forward too. I have been hesitant to say this for months. But now that I’ve seen the first episode of SERIES 5, I can’t wait for the fun to continue. The Doctor is back and so is the adventure we all love. Let the new era begin.

Next Time-It’s Amy’s first trip in the TARDIS with The Doctor. What happens next is anyone’s guess.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Doctor Who S04E18-The End of Time Part Two

It has all come down to this. The Master is once again in control of humanity and seeks an answer to the mysterious drumming in his head. The Doctor, with Wilfred at his side, contemplates the end and the shocking revelation of the return of his own people. With the whole of time and space at stake, The Doctor engages his most desperate gamble yet. It’s the final adventure of The Tenth Doctor…and the start of a new one for The Eleventh Doctor.

The End of Time Part Two…we’ve finally come to the end of the road, for now anyway. So there are questions aplenty I’m sure going into this the most prominent being: how was David Tennant in his final appearance as The Doctor? WHOA WOW AMAZING!!! David delivers several different sides to The Doctor that we have seen before but with much more power and emotion than ever before. Sure he is brooding and sobbing over the end of his existence (in a way we all are) but there’s still plenty of that gung ho cowboy gusto and smart quirky attitude that have made him such a cool and amazing character from scene one after his regeneration from Christopher Eccleston to David Tennant. His tearful final words echo our own thoughts and it brought a tear to my eye when the actual regeneration occurred. But more on that later. For now I’ll just say David Tennant sir, I’ve said just about all I can say on your acting in several reviews before this one and my thoughts haven’t changed. You are MY DOCTOR and thank you so much for the last four years of amazing adventures. Au Revoir mon amie.

Now that I’ve got that out of my system, on to the rest of the episode. Where to start? The Time Lords, led by former James Bond Timothy Dalton, finally return and show their true colors, justifying why The Doctor had to fry them along with the Daleks at the end of the Time War. Wow what a bunch of douche bags; that is save for mystery woman who guides both The Doctor and Wilf through their big trial. We never find out who she is. I kind of thought she was Romana (a character from the old Tom Baker adventures). Another mystery to be explored another day I guess.

The Master. He finally got the answers he was looking for all of this time and finally made his choice on where he stands in the end of the episode. Sure he vanishes without a trace, but I hope we see John Simm again one day as a new and improved Master, minus the magic powers even though they did come in handy at the end of the episode. If he does return one day it will be interesting to see how he fares on screen against Doctor number eleven. It’ll be hard to top though, John Simm and David Tennant had great chemistry in all of their scenes.

Wilfred. The heart and soul of this story gave his best performance yet and got to get in on the action in a Star Wars esque action piece. Again, Bernard Cribbs plays the sadden fan that is all of us as The Tenth Doctor’s end draws near. His tearful breakdown as he tells The Doctor he wants him to survive was a tear jerking moment worthy of an Emmy Award in the right universe. Possibly sadder than The Tenth Doctor’s end is the sense of finality brought to Wilf’s story. I get the feeling we may never see this character again or if we ever do it will be quite some time. Still, Wilf got quite the send off, even provided the smack to the face answer to the infamous “He will knock four times warning”. GREAT STUFF!!!

After The Doctor sacrifices his life to save Wilf, he gets some time to go see his other companions one last time. Here we get brief glimpses of the current states of some of our favorite: Luke Smith almost gets run over by a car only to be saved by The Doctor at the last second; Captain Jack Harkness is drowning his sorrows in a bar following the events of Torchwood: Children of Earth, only to link up with a familiar sailor from Voyage of the Damned thanks to The Doctor; the descendant of Joan Redford (from Human Nature/The Family of Blood) gets a visit from The Doctor, a tender scene; and The Doctor pays an “in the shadows” visit to Rose Tyler on New Year’s Eve 2005, the year she met his Christopher Eccleston incarnation. Oh and apparently Mickey and Martha got married? Yeah that was the only little tidbit I could get over, I mean really? Alien hunting partners maybe, but MARRIED? Sorry I can’t process that one just yet. Oh and also Donna survives her burn out with no real side effects, I wish they would have cleared that up a little bit better.

And then we finally have the regeneration we’ve all been both dreading and looking forward too. What is my verdict on Mr. Matt Smith as The Eleventh Doctor? Eh, too early to tell. But judging from the trailer that followed this episode he is going to a bit more of a proactive and action oriented Doctor, harkening back to Jon Pertwee’s karate infused Third Doctor. Again it’s too early to tell, we’ll see what he can do when the series returns later this spring with a new Doctor, new Tardis interior (and slightly redesigned exterior), new drop dead gorgeous companion and even a new title logo.

So aside from one character revelation that doesn’t sit to well with me, the rest of The End of Time Part 2 gave us all the drama and emotion we expected to see in David Tennant’s final Doctor appearance (for now hopefully anyway) What more is there to say at this point? The future lies ahead, so in the immortal words of The Tenth Doctor…”ALLONS-Y!!!!”

Next Time-Daleks, The Weeping Angels, sexy female vampires, gravity defying swordsman, guns, explosions, mayhem…The Eleventh Doctor arrives on Earth Spring 2010.


Doctor Who S04E17-The End of Time Part One

The people of Earth are having terrible dreams of a man with a menacing laugh. The Doctor returns to Earth to find his greatest fears realized…The Master has been resurrected. However, the resurrection has gone wrong and The Master is now more powerful and more insane than ever. It all comes down to the biggest game changer ever, where The Doctor and Wilfred Mott witness the fall of the human race and the rise of The Master. And elsewhere, a new and unexpected development occurs. For the rise of The Master Race heralds the return of a race once thought dead forever.

Well, here we have it: the beginning of the end for the Tenth Doctor. The End of Time Part One was a somewhat sluggish start to a grand story but there were definitely plenty of good scenes, particularly towards the end, but we will get to that in a moment.

First, while I know there are those out there who feel Russell T. Davies is running out of ideas since he is returning to the Noble Family once again, I can safely say that star companion Wilfred Mott is great as The Doctor’s companion for this story. And to be honest, Wilf was such a great character in Series 4 that he deserved every right to get at least one trip with The Doctor. Bernard Cribbs is fantastic as always playing the old granddad who is totally understanding of The Doctor’s current state and can’t bring himself to ever hate him, even after what happened to Donna and The Doctor recounting the events of The Waters of Mars. The café scene between the two of them is well acted and well written. Wilf is the fan we all are, almost in tears along with David Tennant as they contemplate the world without this version of The Doctor. Wilf man, you are the man.

And at last, after much hype and many a fan girl scream, The Master returns, badder and more disturbed than ever. It is always a treat to see John Simm back in the saddle. However, the new powers he obtains through his disasterous resurrection were a little disappointing and even a little cheesy. The transparent skull visual was creepy and good, but the lighting bolts and the jumping like Neo through a trash site were not as satisfying as they could have been. Visuals aside, The Master is still a great villain who may or may not bring about the end of The Doctor if the prophecy has been interpreted correctly.

Lots of new and familiar faces this time out. Obviously since Wilf is involved we had to see Sylvia and Donna Noble again although their involvement is rather limited, a possible letdown for fans of Donna. David Herewood (the kick ass Friar Tuck from Robin Hood) makes a guest appearance as the mysterious Joshua Naismith but again his involvement in the story is simply just to be there just for sake of one plot point. He is sorely underused which is very disappointing since he’s such a great actor. Oh and they’re two “cactus” characters present who may or may not play a bigger role in Part 2. Doesn’t really matter though I didn’t really care for them anyway.

Arguably the biggest and best moments of the episode came in the last ten or so minutes when The Master enacts his grand plan and turns the entire human race into The Master. Oh and James Bond Timothy Dalton is the President of the Time Lords who make a surprise return to the Doctor Who universe declaring the titular End of Time. As far as cliffhangers go, this one pretty much tops the list. Never before since the infamous cliffhanger of Star Trek The Next Generations “The Best of Both Worlds” have I been this scared and anxious for the next part. How is The Doctor ever going to get out of this one?

So aside for a fairly slow pacing, the rest of the story set itself up nicely in the last quarter with the return of some great characters and some great interactions between those characters. This wasn’t the best of the 2009 specials, probably the weakest. Here’s hoping January 1, 2010 is the send off we all hoped David Tennant would get.

Next Time-The End is only the Beginning. The final adventure of The Tenth Doctor January 1, 2010