Sunday, 23 September 2012

The Power of Three

Another interesting episode, with lots of great ideas, but not necessarily adding up to the sum of their parts...

Surprising we haven’t had more of this type of 'Amy and Rory' perspective on a story, and being their penultimate episode, something we won't see again. However the story nicely made space for lots of spin off stories (Zygons included). I loved the idea of mankind needing culling to prevent it reaching plague proportions, with the cubes like slug pellets - although think more could have been made of this - when is Doctor Who going to get serious with environmental issues and mankind destroying this planet, rather than the Doctor blindly defending humanity, as he does a lot in this new series.

But we like Rory's dad. He's good. I almost felt at the end I wanted Amy and Rory to stay behind and dad to come along instead. Certainly Smith's childish Doctor needs a father figure... too much silly messing about going on for my liking, although he is very good at it.

And why is it that UNIT stories are always a bit of a let down? I'm glad we didn't have to get introduced to a role call of sergeants and captains, and yes, nice nod with having the Brig's daughter as the new special advisor, but I'm not sure I'm looking forward to more UNIT stories being developed - in their day they were great, but these days it's too familiar.

And those cubes... think they missed a trick but not showing us the Doctor trying to break into one, would have been better than showing him painting a fence and doing the hoovering, and more relevant to the story.

For me this wasn't the big impact episode I was looking for. Yes, it mixed up a load of ideas, mentioned zygons and had UNIT, but it felt like a script pulled from the RTD recipe book for new series earth-bound Who, utilising too many of the tricks of the Tennant years, including a wave of cameos, which I must admit did make me chuckle, especially Alan Sugar, who is such a plonker - to the point were the original elements of the story got lost in the mix. The Shakri are a nice idea, but looked too much like Darth Vader without his mask from the orginal Star Wars flims. Good job they give up easily hey.

And what a coincidence that Rory's hospital was one of the focal points for the cubes, but I'm not sure about doctors in masks with big needles. Come on, it's too easy, and it's all been used before, mostly by Moffat himself.

And the resolution at the end, with a bit of sonic and some frankly unbelievable cardiac therapy bringing everybody back to life, was just too much. And why was the ship colleting humans from the hospital, and the two doctors who had unwisely stuffed their cubes in their mouths? And the 'power of three'? I didn't really get that. Sort of excluded Rory's dad, and after he'd spent so much time watching his cube.

Damn, it's even making last week's episode look better, which is no good sign. Let hope next week gives us a much needed boost - but will it be enough to stop the slide in the ratings?

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