I haven’t written a serious piece on anything in quite a while. If you are curious to hear my personal, feminist thoughts on the issue, click on through.
This is going to be pretty short. As Christmas specials most often are, it was a fun episode, but doesn’t offer much to an overall arc to discuss. It is more of a stand-alone episode and doesn’t offer a great deal of significant plot to discuss, though I do have some thoughts that really stand out to me.
First, (and most significantly to me) I LOVED the interactions between Tennant and Tate. I already feel that those two have way more chemistry as an onscreen duo than Tennant and Billie Piper (sorry Billie!). I was excited to watch them and enjoyed every minute of them together. I am anxious to get to season 4 now to see more of Donna Noble, but that will have to wait a bit, as Martha Jones makes her appearance next time.
Second, I appreciated the way that Tennant portrayed The Doctor in this episode. There were moments of great sadness from the loss of Rose, but it was also clear that The Doctor had things to do. He had to save Donna and the planet and those typical Doctor-like things. I personally liked the balance he struck between those conflicting emotions.
Third, the villain in this episode was particularly campy which I don’t always enjoy, but it seems fitting in a Christmas special. It was the right place for it.
And … that’s it, I guess. Fun. Entertaining. A bit silly. And, a good primer for things to come.
I’m not sure if these two episodes were originally billed as a two-partner or not, but I am choosing to combine my thoughts into one post, as they certainly were one connected story. So, as you all surely know, these two episodes are very significant in that they are the final of series 2. They are also the final episodes featuring Rose as The Doctor’s companion (though I understand she does pop up a couple of times down the road). I am a wee bit nervous about reviewing these two episodes, as I know that Doomsday and the exit of Rose are emotional soft spots in the hearts of many Who fans. Nonetheless, here I go. My apologies for any upset that some unpopular opinions expressed here may cause.
So, first off, I will say these episodes were very well done. I enjoyed them immensely and thought they were a grand end to the second series. Dramatic, emotional, fun, and tension building, they made for good television, for sure. As Doctor Who (as least the new series’ not sure about the classic Who) does so well, many of this season’s storylines came together to create one dramatic ending. Cybermen were back – as were Mickey (I was actually excited about this), Rose’s parents (from both universes), and Daleks. Torchwood was featured prominently and we even flashed back to some important notes from series 1 in order to provide background to this story (specifically a time traveler’s ability to bring Dalek’s ‘back to life’).
I loved the merging of all of these details and the roles that everyone (The Doctor, Rose, Mickey, Jackie, Pete Tyler, even the woman from Torchwood – what was her name???) played in saving the two parallel universes and fighting off the Cybermen and the Daleks. Speaking of these two infamous sets of villains - one of my favorite scenes in these two episodes was when they met. The exchange between the Cybermen and Daleks was brilliant. And, by the way, I was totally rooting for the Daleks to take them out based on their witty arrogance alone.
So, let’s get to the big finale, then. Despite The Doctor’s wishes Rose makes the decision to leave her family and Mickey forever and stay with The Doctor in the original Universe, while the rest of the lot returns to the parallel universe. Only, that goes awry, Rose is soon in danger of being sucked into a metaphorical hell with the Daleks, only to be saved by Pete. Being saved, though, means being transported to the alt-universe, where she will (theoretically) never be able to see The Doctor again.
So, here are my feelings on this ending for Rose and The Doctor.
· It was the right way to end it. As I have shared before, I do not and have never bought into the belief that Rose and The Doctor could have a happily ever after. This was the right way to go. And, though I do believe The Doctor was truly grief stricken to lose the connection with her, I think he ultimately believed it to be the best outcome for Rose (and for himself, actually).
· It was acted very well. I really appreciated the performance by Tennant especially in this episode. I definitely felt him channeling the ‘old man’ part of The Doctor that is all too familiar with loss and grief. And, Rose’s grief felt real and guttural. Good job all around.
· I’m very glad The Doctor didn’t get to say “I love you.” (I know I’m in the minority on this.) It would have seemed trite to me and I felt actions that The Doctor took to be able to say a proper goodbye were much more meaningful than those words would have been.
Finally, I thought the very final scene with Donna Noble appearing in the TARDIS was extraordinary. I was pleased that the series ended on that exchange of amusing confusion between The Doctor and Donna rather than on the emotional hook of Rose’s goodbye. It seems a good way to illustrate the fact that The Doctor always has to move forward quickly and without hesitation, regardless of circumstances, as well as a way to lure in viewers for what’s to come. Simply, in my mind, that few seconds between Tennant and Tate showed so much chemistry between the two actors and characters that it definitely left me excited for what’s next.
I know there are a lot of creative people out there on tumblr. So if anyone could develop a low calorie Gin I would be hugely appreciative.
Okay, let’s see, we’ve got The Doctor and Rose traveling to London 2012 to watch the opening ceremonies of the Olympic games. Only, they get sidetracked by the sudden disappearance of several children all living on the same street. At first, I was full of promise for this episode, because I tend to really like creepy kid episodes (even though I dislike children in general). But, I felt a little let down. It never really got creepy and I was sort of annoyed by the bad acting of the child, Chloe. Now, before you shout at me, I know she’s just a kid, but come on, it was pretty bad.
I was nervous about this episode for like the first 10 seconds. That was all the time it took for me to get over my trepidation and decide that I completely LOVED it. My first question straightaway is: How do I join LINDA??? I realize I don’t live in London. And that most of their members got absorbed away. But, come on, I’ve got be able to join the London Investigation ‘N Detective Agency somehow. If anyone out there has the in – please be sure to let me know.
Elton Pope, our protagonist in what I understand is the first of a few ‘Doctor-Lite’ episodes sprinkled throughout the recent years, is an ELO-loving fan of The Doctor who joins up with others to play music and adore The Doctor from afar. Of course, that goes a bit awry when the group is infiltrated by … . wait for it … an Abzorbaloff! Greatest villain name to date. So despite the fact that The Doctor was only in the episode for a few moments, I would venture to say that this episode still has some significance in the overall Doctor Who story. It would appear that this episode, for example, included references to not one or two, but three major story themes. We had, of course, our requisite series 2 mention of Torchwood. We also had a familiar phrase dropped when it was mentioned that the Torchwood files were corrupted by the Bad Wolf virus. Interesting. I suspect that will come up again. And, finally, did others catch the front page newspaper headline which noted that “Saxon leads polls with 64 per cent”? Now, I haven’t seen any of the Saxon episodes as of yet, but I have heard enough to know the significance of the name. I’m looking forward to more of that coming up.
Now, not only did I love this episode because it was just plain fun and because Elton Pope was a very likable character, but Moaning Myrtle was there!! How exciting was that?? With that said, I am going to try and ignore the little tidbit at the end where we learn that Elton and the newly transformed concrete block of Myrtle (okay her name is Ursula here) have a ‘love life.’ I’m pretty open-minded, but that is a little creepy even for me.
And, for my last random (and one of my favorite) comments on this episode: I learned after I watched it that the format was partly influenced by the episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer called ‘The Zeppo.’ I LOVE it when my Doctor Who and Joss Whedon worlds intersect. It makes for a very happy me.
I’m thinking about starting a blog called “Inappropriate, awkward, and just plain weird things overheard in my office.”
It’s inspired by this quote: “I think the reason that women are so into vampires now is that there is a romanticism about it but very little sexual intimacy involved.”
There was a lot that I liked about this two-parter. Loved the Ood. Liked the secondary characters. Loved the somewhat creepy and mysterious element of the ‘beast’. Good stuff. I thought it had all the elements of a great Doctor Who episode and I felt the writing to be back up to par (after my disappointment with The Idiot’s Lantern). I also appreciated the ambiguous nature of the issue of the religion and that no direct answer was given as to what the ‘beast’ really was – leaving things open to interpretation for viewers and the characters in the story as well. Well done, Doctor, from your atheist friend over here.
So, this is weird. I don’t really have anything to say. I felt pretty completely unmoved by this episode. I didn’t dislike it; I just didn’t find it all that interesting. I don’t know if it was because I was tired or cranky when I watched it, but something just didn’t click. I did not find the villain (The Wire) compelling, wasn’t really drawn in by any of the additional characters featured in this specific episode, didn’t find myself marveling at clever writing, and there wasn’t much character development for Rose, The Doctor, or the two of them as a pair. It’s all very odd. Maybe I need to watch it again in the future, but, all in all, it was an ‘ok’ episode that didn’t reel me in.
I feel a little bad about this.
I’m sure it won’t last.
Our first Tenth Doctor two-parter brings back (what I am told since I haven’t seen the old stuff) is a classic villain from Classic Who – Cybermen!! So, I’ll admit that one of my first thoughts about Cybermen was: why are there no Cyberwomen? Why is gender converted in the ‘upgrade’ process? What the hell?! But, feminist rants aside, let’s get to the episodes themselves.
A crack in the space-time vortex lands The Doctor, Rose, and Mickey in a parallel universe – somewhere they are never supposed to be able to visit. We quickly see that some version of the humans exist here in this universe (Mickey as tough guy Rickey and Rose as … a dog. Love it.) Rose wants to find this world’s version of her parents (of course) and a crazy old man scared of death has created Cybermen which threaten to convert all humans and take over the planet. Surprisingly, the biggest stand-out story thread in these two episodes was that of Mickey. Clearly, he was supposed to be a big stand-out here, but since he hasn’t managed to leave much of an impression on me until this point, this took me by surprise. Most notably, I hated alter-universe Rickey so much that Mickey seemed all that more appealing. Plus, it was nice getting to see him interact (albeit briefly) with his grandma. It added that very small extra layer to Mickey that I needed to give a damn. I’m pleased about this development. I dislike disliking characters on shows that I love. Oh! And, did anyone else feel a little bit of sexual chemistry between Mickey and his new friend Jake? I don’t know that it was supposed to come across this way, but it sure did to me! Plus, I like to think of Mickey living happily with a cute blonde in a parallel universe.
Let’s see … . other thoughts … . I liked the Cybermen. They were fun villians – though no Daleks (or Weeping Angels, but that’s to come later). I LOVED it when they were all getting their emotions back and it looked like they were having a huge robot dance party. Seriously. If you haven’t seen it in a while, watch that scene. It looks like a dance frenzy. Also, I like the way Tennant portrays The Doctor’s relationship with Mickey. It’s still a little surly and definitely condescending, but not so directly mean, and thus feels much more Doctor-like than before, I think.
That shall be all for now, I suppose. Let’s all go to a robot dance party!
This episode was beautiful in many ways. My initial reaction is that I loved the romance of this episode. I really believed that there were not only romantic feelings on behalf of Madame de Pompadour for The Doctor, but that those feelings were reciprocated. This put something into perspective for me and gave me an opinion that I’m sure many of you are not going to like.
You see, I think that the relationship between The Doctor and Madame de Pompadour was a really brilliant contrast to The Doctor’s relationship with Rose. I realize I haven’t seen the remainder of the relationship between the latter two and that it is one may Who followers really see as a love story, but I think that this episode served to show the fundamental flaw in The Doctor’s and Rose’s relationship and why, even if they have love for one another, it would never, ever work.
The connection between The Doctor and the Madame was much, much more mature and of a worldly nature and, frankly, I think that element would be critical in any successful romantic pairing with The Doctor. Now, I realize, this isn’t a newsflash. The Doctor has mentioned many times before (and will continue to, no doubt) how he’s old and a Time Lord and has seen the world and all that jazz. But, this episode was the first in the new series that really depicted what that looked like romantically, rather than just speaking it about in generic terms. There was a connection between The Doctor and the Madame that seemed much more grown-up than what he has with Rose and Rose’s jealousy indicated that she knew it, too. With the Rose and The Doctor it feels young and flirty, but with the Madame, well, that feels a little bit sexy. This isn’t to say that I don’t buy into the story of The Doctor having some romantic feelings for Rose. I think they are likely developing at this part in the show, but I also think he:
A) knows it would never work, and
B) also has parental feelings toward Rose (making the whole thing a wee bit creepy, actually).
We’ve seen more and more of Rose’s jealousy in the last few episodes and I’m curious to see how that continues to pop up.
I just realized that this episode was Mickey’s first trip on the TARDIS and I haven’t mentioned him at all. Oops. More to come on him in the future, I guess!