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Monday, September 29, 2014 - 00:31

Well, Doctor Who has been skirting round the edges of the romance between Clara and Danny for a while now.  It was only a matter of a time, I guess, before the Doctor became nothing more than a secondary character in his own show; the writers even brought back the John Smith persona to help him disappear into the background.

The sci-fi element is rather perfunctory in this weeks story.  A single robot with enough firepower to destroy the planet has turned up somewhere, and the Doctor must go undercover at Coal Hill in order to set an elaborate trap that he well then lure said robot into.

The rest of the story revolves around the relationship between Clara and Danny; Danny’s introduction to the Doctor, and his subsequent efforts to prove himself worthy of Clara in the...

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Friday, September 26, 2014 - 20:21

The one where the Doctor goes all Ocean’s Eleven and leads a small team to rob the most secure bank in the universe. Only, with less laughs..

Those of us of a certain age will be familiar with a phenomenon in television storytelling known as the Star Trek:TNG effect (Not a legit phenomenon, but if you’ve ever watched an episode of TNG, you know where this is going..)

The TNG effect is this: Stories had good introductions, with the plot, or major hooks, being laid out in the brief intro before the opening titles.  Stories were developed, and more often than not had very strong second acts, occasionally overlapping into the third act.  This...

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Saturday, September 20, 2014 - 17:12

“Whats that in the mirror, or the corner of your eye?
Whats that footstep following, but never passing by?”
A little late, but here are my thoughts on Episode 4 “Listen”, the one where the Doctor and Clara go to the end of the Universe chasing a nursery rhyme.

After the folly of Robot of Sherwood, I was looking forward to an episode that promised to crank up the tension; and for the most part I was pleased with “Listen”.  I have a few issues with it, but they mostly lie in the how the episode was wrapped up, but we’ll get to those in a bit.  Lets start with some good bits.

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Sunday, September 7, 2014 - 19:28

Merry Men, a Golden Arrow, and robots aplenty as the Doctor meets a hero of British folklore. There’s whimsy and swashbuckling galore in this interpretation of the classic tale, but sadly Mark Gatiss’ script doesn’t quite hit the bullseye.  

The story starts as the Doctor offers Clara the chance to go anywhere in time and space.  She says she wants to meet Robin Hood and, after a touch of derision, the Doctor takes them to Sherwood Forest, Nottingham, 1190(ish); if only to prove that such a man does not exist.  An arrow to the door of the TARDIS from the rogue in green himself does little to change the Doctors assumptions, and rather than accept that he was wrong and that heroes do exist, the Doctor instead sets out to find evidence to support the conclusion he, wrongly, leapt too.  

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Sunday, August 31, 2014 - 11:43

Doctor Who meets Innerspace in this weeks episode, as the Doctor and Clara go on a mercy mission inside an old foe. An interesting concept and, for the most part, quite an entertaining episode.  Yeah, I enjoyed this one.

Aboard the Combined Galactic Resistance ship Aristotle, the Doctor runs into his oldest adversary and his newest patient.  An injured Dalek, one that has seen the beauty in creation and has somehow found morality.  Is it a ruse? A result of it’s injuries? Or is this a genuinely good Dalek?  The Doctor can’t resist finding out. 

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Sunday, August 24, 2014 - 00:57

“Well, here we go again” 

Madame Vastra echoes the immortal words of the Brigadier from the end of Planet of the Spiders, as Pertwee gave way to Baker.  It just happens that she also echoed my words as I prepared for the adventures of a new Doctor, one that I had some trepidation about embarking on.  Turns out I needn’t have worried unduly, Capaldi’s full debut was pretty damn good. Eventually.

I say “eventually”, because there was something of a shaky start.  The role of the companion has traditionally been to play the audience surrogate, to ask the questions that the viewers want answered.  Too often during the opening 15 minutes, it felt that Vastra’s insistence that this Doctor was still the one Clara knew was infact an effort by the writers to reassure Matt Smith fans that, actually, an older man...

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