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Doctor Who: The Beast Below

Saturday, April 10th, 2010

So the second outing for the 11th Doctor tonight in The Beast Below.

Interesting take on future Britain as a starship.  The sets were nicely dressed and with some interesting colour.  There was a lovely mix of retro, post war, grimy Britain littered with British icons with incongruous details like the rickshaws.  Small quibble if Scotland has its own ship and presumably doing its own thing why does the Union Jack still incorporate Saint Andrew’s Cross?

The scary end of the pier head-in-a-box bad guys were excellent.  I’d like to have seen more of them but the single episode story format doesn’t really let the new bad guys get built up the way the old ones used to.  Being physical objects rather than a CGI effect helps.  The winders becoming smilers using a physical effect in combination with CG was a good choice.

There were lots of nice gags and references littered in the show.  The moment the Woman in cloak (later revealed to be the queen) said “Save us Doctor you’re our only hope”.  The noise in the rubbish dump.  Touches of The Prisoner, Star Wars, Fairy Stories and Douglas Adams.

Liz 10 worked well and was nicely played.  The ruler who is trapped in a perpetual cycle of discovery and denial.  There seems to be a deliberate move to putting children in jeopardy to build tension and both the main child  actors in this episode gave excellent performances.

Amy gets an opportunity to show the kind of companion she is.  The Doctor goes for the dark solution and Amy brings the heart and finds the better solution to the same problem.  The story telling could have just had her hit the button but it showed us the logic very quickly and solve the problem.

Once the excellent story was over they brought out the DALEKs for next week.  Since the revival of Doctor Who that’s become something I dread.  For the first time in several DALEK stories I’m not worried that it will be a disappointment.

So the second outing for the 11th Doctor tonight in The Beast Below.

Interesting take on future Britain as a starship.  The sets were nicely dressed and with some interesting colour.  There was a lovely mix of retro, post war, grimy Britain littered with British icons with incongruous details like the rickshaws.  Small quibble if Scotland has its own ship and presumably doing its own thing why does the Union Jack still incorporate Saint Andrew’s Cross?

The scary end of the pier head-in-a-box bad guys were excellent.  I’d like to have seen more of them but the single episode story format doesn’t really let the new bad guys get built up the way the old ones used to.  Being physical objects rather than a CGI effect helps.  The winders becoming smilers using a physical effect in combination with CG was a good choice.

There were lots of nice gags and references littered in the show.  The moment the Woman in cloak (later revealed to be the queen) said “Save us Doctor you’re our only hope”.  The noise in the rubbish dump.  Touches of The Prisoner, Star Wars, Fairy Stories and Douglas Adams.

Liz 10 worked well and was nicely played.  The ruler who is trapped in a perpetual cycle of discovery and denial.  There seems to be a deliberate move to putting children in jeopardy to build tension and both the main child  actors in this episode gave excellent performances.

Amy gets an opportunity to show the kind of companion she is.  The Doctor goes for the dark solution and Amy brings the heart and finds the better solution to the same problem.  The story telling could have just had her hit the button but it showed us the logic very quickly and solve the problem.

Once the excellent story was over they brought out the DALEKs for next week.  Since the revival of Doctor Who that’s become something I dread.  For the first time in several DALEK stories I’m not worried that it will be a disappointment.

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