The gang goes to The States where Nixon’s a pretty nice guy and there are creepy Men in Black in the Ladies’ Room.
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Tardis-coloured envelopes are delivered to the main cast, as well as to an unlikely American desert codger, and then a beach-side picnic turns sour as a plucky young astronaut shoots the Doctor.
Just as the Doctor is breaking out life-marmalade, BLAM, she shoots him again and he’s out for the count.
In steps a younger, more alive Doctor and there’s something they all have to tell him, but no one can remember.
Our review of this awesome Doctor Who episode had us dodging spoilers like pros and then finally facing them head-on. Listen to it now!
Oh, and here’s a behind-the-scenes view of our recording…
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Things I liked:
After the migraine-inducing incongruous muddle of ‘The Big Bang’, and the sick-inducing sentimentalism of ‘A Christmas Carol’, this was seriously good TV! In particular:
1. The Silence. Holy scrambled eggs! A fabulous villain! Scary, creepy (hanging out in women’s bathrooms…?), cruel, and with nifty forget-me-not powers. Zapping the bathroom lady was a horrific scene. This is a great baddie. A genuine threat. Bravo Team Moffat. Bravo!
2. Sexy, exotic Wild West locations and surreal imagery such as the 1960s astronaut emerging from the Utah lake.
3. Nixon’s nose!
4. The raw emotion of the Doctors companions when he’s blown away, particularly a furious River taking potshots at the killer astronaut and then giving the Doctor a good slap. Love it.
1. River’s escape. I know she is incarcerated out of choice but this is starting to take the piss. Stormcage is clearly the least secure prison in the Whoverse and requires an urgent review by the Shadow Proclamation.
2. Frankly, this was near perfect. The only thing that would have made it better would be the appearance of the 7th Doctor, which might have looked a little contrived.
Summary: exciting, interesting, gripping. This reinvigorated my faith in the 11th Doctor era. More please.
4.6/5 creepy Silence suits hanging out in women’s toilets.
I am Tracey. Have a mini!
Let’s start with the voiceover. This season Amy introduces the episodes (following the cold open) with these words, over a visual montage of stuff from last season:
“When I was a little girl I had an imaginary friend. And when I grew up he came back. He’s called The Doctor. He comes from somewhere else. He’s got a box called the TARDIS that’s bigger on the inside and can travel anywhere in time and space. I ran away with him and we’ve been running ever since.”
You may not have seen this. It’s my understanding the voiceover/montage was exclusive to America where Doctor Who was gaining popularity and had a lot of new viewers.
Anyway! This episode keeps up the production values I’ve come to appreciate during Matt Smith’s run, as well as serving up a nicely intricate and intriguing plot.
My favorite thing in this episode is the tenderness in the moment when the Doctor trusts Amy, telling her his life is in her hands. It’s a short moment in the overall episode, but packs an emotional punch that sticks. We rarely see the Doctor really acting vulnerable, yet in this moment he is clearly terrified. And even so, he goes along with Amy. This is the truest definition of trust; willingness to follow someone solely on the basis of your relationship with them, in spite of any other facts to go on, and through your own fear.
Comments from TfA’s daughter:
She says the set with all the alien tech looks like the upstairs to Craig’s apartment (remember Craig from The Lodger?)
She was surprised Amy is pregnant and very excited.
Rating: Pocket full of Möbius strip
What was it you guys were saying about Doc 11 not being portrayed as a sex icon? Must say, I was a bit frightened by that painting instead of intrigued, but that might just be me.
I watched this entire season recently, and because of that, there’s a few… uncomfortable… River moments in this episode. Her trying to kill “the spacesuit.” Her asking, “Now why would a little girl be here?” (ugh, overdoing it, River) If she had started whistling to demonstrate how casual she was being, it would not have surprised me at all. In fact, I disliked that overdone “Oh, look over here! At what I learned just now! Brand new! I’ve got a scanner and everything!” so much, I’m knocking a point off my rating for it.
Fortunately that point gets regained by this: Mark Sheppard.
My favorite part was the moment when the Doctor stops grilling River on who she killed. The camera’s focused on Amy, but Alex Kingston’s performance in the background is spot on.
Incidentally, the actress who played The Little Girl has the same first name as me. That rarely happens for me, so it was kind of fun.
I’m going with a 4.3 out of 5 falling Silen— what? I didn’t say anything. No, there’s nothing behind me. What do you mean, I should turn around?