Saturday, 15 September 2012

A Town Called Mercy

Well, as with last week, I wasn't expecting much from this episode, but was pleasantly surprised. Well produced and acted, it was entertaining, without hitting the cringe or slapstick buttons, and actually dealt with some serious themes.

My one big dislike, and it they used twice in the plot... I mean, would this supposedly high-tech terminator cyborg really not be able to tell its alien quarry from the humans he was hiding among, and be fooled by someone dressing up in his hat, or later by everyone with bits of face paint? It was just a bit too weak - couldn't they have come up with something clever like a good old fashioned 'reverse the polarity of the neutron flow' home made device, using the (other) alien Doc's primative electricity rig (I mean, what was the point of that is it's not used in the story?), or ship, or something, to disrupt the cyborg's computer recognition... or perhaps they shoud have tricked him into getting drunk - I'd have thought that would be a good way to deal with a cyborg. In fact the whole thing could have revolved around the bar - we could have have had Amy doing the can-can, and Rory could have done, um, something. Anything.

If I had to re-write this story (a useful mental exercise in terms of playing with ideas and generally faffing around, so good Sunday fodder), I'd be tempted to have made the barrier surrounding the town a force-field set up by the alien Doc to protect himself, but with everyone thinking the cyborg controls it. Then our Doctor and accompanying Ponds, trapped inside with everyone else, could have uncovered the truth, and the alien Doc. The town would want to lynch him, and our Doctor could save him from that and then deliver him to the cyborg, or whatever. Not sure I liked the 'noble death' in suicide, think he should have tried to escape and got blown up by a booby-trap set by the cyborg, but anyway. And I wouldn't have kiled Issac, I mean he was like a good man. And after the cyborg accidentally shot Issac, why didn't he just try again whilst the Doc was just standing there hey?

But other than all that, it was fun, and better than last week although I doubt the ratings will reflect that. I think the season needs to really pick up from here until the half-season break.