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The Great Intelligence employs those chaps from Buffy and a Back-To-The-Future letter to lure The Doctor to Trenzalore

We begin upon Gallifrey, a very long time ago, where some kind of idiot is trying to steal a faulty TARDIS from the Time Lords’ repair shop. Meanwhile, Clara’s all broken up about something and falling down on the job.

Elsewhere, Madame Vastra is combing London’s prisons for tiny grains of meaning hidden within vast deserts of rhyming twaddle, while Strax is happily battering his way through the huge open-air fight club that is Victorian Glasgow.

Turns out the Doctor’s grave has been found, turns out Jenny’s left the door open, and turns out the Great Intelligence and his new heatproof Whisper Men regiment are heading for Trenzalore in search of the Doctor’s greatest secret.

Can Doc, Clara, the Paternosters, and a spectral version of M. River Shyalama-ding-Song save the day, and all the Doctor’s days, or is the dangling Seventh Doctor doomed finally to lose his grip on his umbrella?

Here's what we think of N102 The Name of the Doctor

We rate Doctor Who stories on a scale from 0.0 to 5.0. For context, very few are excellent enough to merit a 5.0 in our minds, and we'd take a 0.0 Doctor Who story over a lot of other, non-Whovian stuff out there.

Leon | @ponken

4.6

Drew | @drewbackwhen

4.5

Marie | Not on twitter...

4.9

Jim | @jimmythewho

4.6

Here's what we think of N102 The Name of the Doctor

We rate Doctor Who stories on a scale from 0.0 to 5.0. For context, very few are excellent enough to merit a 5.0 in our minds, and we'd take a 0.0 Doctor Who story over a lot of other, non-Whovian stuff out there.

Leon | @ponken

4.6

Drew | @drewbackwhen

4.5

Marie | Not on twitter...

4.9

Jim | @jimmythewho

4.6

Here's what you think 3 Responses to “N102 The Name of the Doctor”
  1. Michael Ridgway | @Bad_Movie_Club

    A mix of Likes & Beefs:

    – Opening Classic Doctor fest!

    – Except for the Second Doctor clip. That looks rubbish. Why is he wearing a fur coat in the Bahamas?

    – It’s those bloody kids again. Fuck off!

    – The Doctor in tears and the music (track 33, best score on season 7 soundtrack). BAFTAs all round please.

    – Where the fuck is my Yeti? And no, stock footage from Classic Who doesn’t count.

    – The Whisper Men. Holy moly. Scariest baddy since the Weeping Angels. Underwear change please.

    – Trenzalore looks great.

    – The actual Battle of Trenzalore sucks, as revealed in the upcoming crapfest of Christmas yet-to-come. Does that demean this episode?

    – If I’m going to buy this time-stream malarkey I require the following:
    1) Star Wars Special Edition revisionism by the BBC to insert Clara into every Classic and New Who adventure.
    2) Clarity over which victories the Great Intelligence has reversed. Is it every victory, or just one per Doctor? Some villains have posed existential threats to the universe (Davros’s Reality Bomb and the Timelord’s End of Time scheme). And reversing victories would leave the Doctor very dead. Would the Doctor and the universe have reconciled into nothingness had Clara not jumped in?

    – Revised theory of Classic Who Dragonfire’s infamous cliffhanger. It was the Great Intelligence that forced the Seventh Doctor off the ledge all along! Either that, or it rocked up, realised this Doctor was perfectly capable of destroying himself, and bemusedly moved onto Doctor Eight.

    – John Hurt (Legend). We miss you.

    Summary: ‘Name’ blew me away at the time as Matt Smith’s finest hour. It doesn’t quite hold up nowadays but still great ideas, performances and production.

    Rating: 4.8/5 creepy Whisper Men stopping people’s hearts. Yuk. And then being sued by the Gentlemen in Buffy the Vampire Slayer for copyright infringement.

  2. Star Wars Syl | @StarWarsSyl

    Silence will fall when the question is asked, the question that must never be answered, the oldest question in the universe. Well, they asked it. And River answered it. And silence… almost fell? Except it didn’t.

    The oldest writing in the universe is “Hello Sweetie,” so the oldest question would seem to be the earliest people looking at the cliff asking, “Who is Sweetie?” with the answer being a name. Unless the question is actually, “What is the Hippocratic Oath?” and the answer is the promise the Doctor made when he chose the name “Doctor”.

    It’s all meant to sound epic, the music says that much at least, but I’m not sure all the pieces add up. Maybe they will, and I’m just being distrustful. To put a stop to the distrustful train, have some happinesses:

    We had so many wonderful Clara outfits this episode! I loved the Whisper Men poem at the beginning, though it got a little unwieldy as they added stanzas through the rest of the episode.

    Also, this TV show tells us what The Question is: “Who the hell is Sweetie?” and the answer is wishy-washy at best so far, but fortunately Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, while forgetting what The Most Important Question was, remembered The Answer.

    Ladies and Gents, I present you the Doctor’s birth name.

    42.

    4.6 out of 5 tombstones, because I love this episode too much to go with the poetic 4.2

  3. Peter Zunitch

    I’m watching all of who in order so I wont get to reviewing this for some time. However I did want to comment on two things.

    First, I loved this idea. It’s perfect symmetry that the person who is always looking out for people constantly throughout time and space has had someone watching out for him. It makes a lot of “grace of God” situations more acceptable.

    The BEEF however comes when you start the next season and without any explanation Clara is there and best buddies with Doc, and they both pretend it never happened.

    It’s another point of proof of a disturbing trend new who has. They introduce these complex storylines for these amazing companions for their debut season. But once that first season is over, and that first story is told, the writers seem to have no new ideas how to further develop that character.

    More examples? Rose, Martha (only it took 4episodes, not a season), Bill (she was so great that they wrote her out because they couldn’t think of where her character could go next), and even Jack who only got fleshed out because of torchwood.

    Anyway my only point is that it does Clara an injustice to ignore this story at the beginning of the next episode/season.

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