Series 7: Part 2

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Series 7: Part 2

Post by BBrooks »

My personal thoughts on Series 7: Part 2;

The Bells of Saint John.
The real villain in this episode was Wi-Fi, which was a great twist and made it more Fiction than Science-Fiction. I also liked the way the BBC1 Ident was tweaked to link it into the story, it's always great when TV gets creative. :-) With the superb cast of Matt, Jenna, the excellent Celia Imrie and a brief cameo from Richard E. Grant. Great stuff, also I'm loving the new TARDIS interior which made it's debut at Xmas.

The Rings of Akhaten.
This was slammed heavily by some Whovians, it may not have been the "best" episode, but it certainly wasn't the "worst" either. The market scenes which were bustling with all different kinds of Aliens, were very "Star Wars". The general plot wasn't really original, an ancient monster suddenly wakes up and then The Doctor comes along and saves everyone. How many times have we seen that?
But that said, I still found it to be entertaining, fast-paced with great special effects/make-up etc. and Jenna Louise Coleman perfectly acted the moment where Clara sees her first alien planet. She's very good with her eyes, just like her predecessor Karen Gillan. :-)

Cold War.
Mark Gatiss has done it again, he should become the show's head writer if Moffat ever relinquishes the role. The Thing & Alien were the big inspirations for this, in Mark's storys there's usually a monster which picks off character's one by one. This time it was The Ice Warriors, I've never seen any of their previous stories (except "Waters of Mars" where they were referenced) so this was a great introduction.
It was made better due to the fact that it was entirely studio-based, giving it a real claustrophobic feel. Plenty of scares, suspense, great acting, special effects & David Warner, all the ingredients needed for a cracking episode.

A genuinely spooky atmosphere was created for this story and the monster was perhaps a little too frightening for younger viewers. The fact that you never fully saw it until the end, made it all the more scary and would have sent a whole new generation hiding behind the sofa.
The whole scene with Clara asking The Doctor how he coped with Time Travel & Death was interesting. In a previous thread I did for S7 Part 1, our very own "Pooka" commented on the Pond's Death in TAIM by saying;

"They're not dead! Well, they are now, but they lived to an old age in the past. Everyone's saying they're dead, but they're not! This sort of thing shouldn't matter to a man who can travel through space and time... surely if he travels to the far future, everyone he knows is dead? He never comments on that, does he?."

Fast forward a year later and they're doing an episode tackling this very subject. Maybe the DW writers visit here regularly, they saw that and thought it was a great idea. :-) Another enjoyable episode, usually there's a mid-season dip in quality but Part 2 got off to a strong start.

Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS.
This was one for the fans, it's always great to see more of the TARDIS. So when the Library, Swimming Pool, The Eye of Harmony etc. were shown, it was enough to get any Whovian's heart racing. :-)
Like the last season, there's been no "Cliffhangers" this year, at times the story felt too rushed and Clara was only required to run a lot. Also if the Robot was actually a Human all along, then how did he make such a good recovery after getting impaled by a spike.
The zombies were another scary creation, the twist with them being future versions of the characters was great and one I didn't see coming. I'm glad that Matt Smith played The Doctor more seriously this time and didn't goof it up which he has a tendency for. Overall they were some hit & miss aspects, but it was still an entertaining ride. You can never accuse DW of being "dull".

But surprisingly, JTTCOTT got an overnight figure of just 4.7 million viewers (their lowest to date).

The Crimson Horror.
This should have been called "The Pilot", as I'm fully expecting a Madame Vastra / Jenny & Strax spin-off being made. It'll be no bad thing though, the character's are strong enough to carry their own series and it would be a good substitute for the defunct "Sarah Jane Adventures". Most Mark Gatiss episodes are set in the past and they almost always have a Horror movie element. This time he revisited the Victorian times again, which gave it that whole "Hammer Horror"-style feel. As mentioned above, a Cliffhanger would have been great, imagine if the episode ended at the moment where Jenny found The Doctor imprisoned and in chains. Diana Rigg was brilliant, I wonder if the scene where Jenny uses Martial Arts to defeat the guards was a reference to her Emma Peel (The Avengers) character. This story was packed full with Comedy too, with most of the laughs being provided by Strax.
Another winner which made full use of what it had, but could have easily been stretched out to two parts. I wonder what the spin-off will be called?, "Vastra & Company" maybe........or not. :-)

Nightmare in Silver.
After doing so well with his previous story "The Doctor's Wife", it was good to hear that Neil Gaiman was returning this year. I expected this to be like "Westworld", with a Cybermen led Theme Park which goes into chaos when they break their programming etc. But I was wrong, the Cybermen got a new slim-line look which made them more agile and took away that clunky feel they used to have.
Seeing them run with super-human speed was awesome, why they didn't use this during the final showdown is baffling. Another fan pleasing moment was when all of the Doctor's previous incarnation's were shown, there was even an "Allons-y" thrown in for good measure. Series 7 racked up an impressive guest-list and NIS continued the tradition with Warwick Davis, Jason Watkins and Tamsin Outhwaite all putting in great cameos. Matt Smith got the chance to play a dual role, which showed off his versatility and Jenna Louise Coleman was at her feisty best.

The Name of the Doctor.
What is The Doctor's greatest secret?, What is The Doctor's name?.......well we still don't REALLY know for sure. lol I wondered if they would reveal his name or not, if it was mentioned then I didn't hear it. :-) So after all the hype/anticipation did Moffat pull it off? Yes!
The intro was very pleasing to the eye, with Clara interacting with most of the Classic Doctor's, but it was a shame that Paul McGann wasn't seen. Colin Baker was replaced with a stand-in too, which I thought was odd. But special honours go to Matt Smith who got to flex his acting muscles, especially the scene in Clara's house where The Doctor breaks down in tears as details of Trenzalore and the "Secret" are revealed. It was a very off-character moment, also Richard E. Grant and The Whisper Men were genuinely scary villains. The ending with John Hurt being revealed as The Doctor, was sadly unsurprising but still awesome. About a week or so before the finale, Hurt said in an interview that he was playing him and also revealed some plot-lines for the 50th Anniversary special. If he'd have kept quiet just a little longer, then that ending would have been even more epic. But this still was an amazing episode, packed full of references & clips of Classic Who and will keep Whovians scratching their heads until November 23rd.
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Re: Series 7: Part 2

Post by wombstar »

Neil Gaiman's cyberman story was horrid.

Also just irritates me the Moff and re-written the history of the Doctor.
For 50 years fans assumed he stole the Tardis and grew old... nope, he was told which one and was already an old man (in appearance)

Moff also suffers from writers block almost every episode, too many time-loops and re-set buttons popping up all the time, and all his female character and written exactly the same, and they all have to be 'extra special'

Thing is the Moff was never a fan of the show, which is part the problem. I also think it's wrong for him to have complete creative control over the 50th.

Matt Smith has been one of the favourites, it's just a pity he had to deal with one of the shows worse show runners.
It's always the cracked ones that let the light in
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