Doctor Who: The Woman Who Lived

So, as mentioned last week, The Woman Who Lived was the second part to The Girl Who Died. As always when it comes to Doctor Who, please beware of Spoilers coming ahead!

thewomanwholived

What was it about?

The Doctor is looking for an alien artifact on earth and runs into Ashildr or as she now likes to call herself (Lady) Me. Time has not been kind to her and she has become bitter and cold about humanity. She wants to travel with the Doctor, but he refuses which leads to her making a terrible deal with another alien, Leandro. In the end she sees that she did wrong and mends the situation just in time.

My thoughts?

If you recall last week, you know that I wasn’t very impressed with the episode. Unfortunately this week wasn’t very different. I definitely liked it and there were some great moments in there, but I just didn’t love it either.

It tried to balance (silly) humour with some more dark and reflective topics and I am just not sure they succeeded, because I didn’t find it all that funny. Leandro was the monster of the week, but definitely didn’t leave much of a mark with me other than he could fit into a Cats musical. And Sam Swift, who played a nice counterpart to the Nightmare and who took the term gallows humour quite literally, could now be another immortal? I don’t like it. And his jokes? There’s nothing wrong with them per se, but somehow they just didn’t fit the tone of the episode for me.
However, I did love the more earnest scenes. I liked getting to see a glimpse of what Ashildr (and yes, I am going to call her that and not Nightmare or Lady Me or anything else) went through in her 800 years on earth. She seemed so hurt and lonely – it’s no wonder she locked her heart away. But something did keep bothering me (besides the fact that I have difficulties acknowledging Maisie Williams as a grown-up). She obviously fell in love and had people she cared about, then why didn’t she ever use the second chip to create a companion for herself? She clearly didn’t want them to die. Then again, I suppose I would understand not wanting to bestow immortality on another poor soul.

I quite liked the ending and Ashildr becoming the Patron Saint of the Doctor’s Leftovers. It was so eerie to see her in the background of the selfie Clara took.  But I think it was time for an episode of the Doctor travelling without Clara (once again, a premonition from last week that was correct. YAY!). He used to do that more often in the past and it seems the showrunners have learned from their mistakes in Season 8. Uh, and there was a mention of Jack Harkness, that can never be wrong!

Next week looks interesting, picking up with the Zygon-topic first introduced on The Day of the Doctor. But what was your opinion on the Woman Who Lived? Love or Loathe?

Doctor Who: Before the Flood

I know that I am terribly late with my Doctor Who review for Before the Flood, but I have good reasons. Yesterday I went and sold some childhood memories at the flee market. It sounds way more dramatic than it was, because they were all things I neither needed nor wanted, but it was freezing and we basically had to stand there all day long. So, after getting home, I mostly tried to get some warmth back into my body and slept a lot – hence my slightly belated review. Now, beware of Spoilers ahead!

What was it about?

The Doctor and Clara are separated through time. While Clara struggles to stay hopeful facing the Doctor’s ghost, he is off to change the future in order to keep Clara safe. 

My thoughts?

After last week, I was quite excited about how Moffat would resolve the issue of the Doctor’s ghost appearing, but when the episode started and the Bootstrap Paradox was mentioned, I knew it wouldn’t be an entirely satisfying solution. However, it doesn’t mean that it wasn’t a good episode, I just think that ending it with a question rather than the answer can be a bit of a cop-out sometimes. Funnily enough, I did suspect the ghost of the Doctor to be a hologram, so I was kind of happy to be right about that one.

I still think that Sophie Stone as Cass was a brilliant addition to the cast and the story – her being deaf actually added to the narrative and that was amazing! Also, her and Lunn were just super cute. I liked pretty much all of the people from the underwater base though and was sorry to see Bennett so shattered in the end. He had one of the best lines after meeting Albert Prentis in 1980 – “My first proper alien and he’s an idiot!” – I definitely laughed out loud at that! Also, he at least gave us a bit of a chance to explore Clara’s emotions after loosing Danny. I feel like that’s just being pushed aside like it wasn’t that big a deal in the first place, but moments like the one at the end of Before the Flood showed that it changed her at least a little.

Now there was a new monster – the Fisher King. I think the episode could have used a bit more of him. He looks quite terrifying, but since the costume made it difficult to move, he looked stiff and awkward sometimes. I wish they explored his motives and the monster in general a bit more, but what can you do, there is only so much you can show in 45 minutes.

Next week we will finally find out who Maisie Williams is playing on Doctor Who – massively excited for that! But what was your impression of Before the Flood? 

Doctor Who: Under the Lake

Again, it is time for the weekly Doctor Who review! It is for episode 3 of Series 9, titled Under the Lake. If you haven’t watched the episode yet, beware of Spoilers ahead.

dw2

First off, I want to say that I had no idea that pretty much all the episodes this Season would be 2-parters. Officially there are 4 declared ones, but you can’t tell me that “The Girl Who Died” and “The Woman Who Lived“, which play in consecutive weeks, aren’t a 2-parter as well. That leaves only 2 episodes as standalones and that is not a lot for a whole season. Don’t get me wrong, I like the longer stories most of the time, but it messes a bit with the Season-arc because it focuses more on the episode-storyline. Well, we will see how it goes in the following weeks and either way, I really, really enjoyed this week.

What was it about?

The Doctor and Clara land in an underwater base in 2119. Shortly before their arrival, the crew has discovered a spacecraft nearby and brought it to the base. Ever since then, there are ghosts haunting the base and trying to kill the remaining crew. The ghosts are messing with the base, so that the Doctor and Clara are separated. He wants to go back in time to find out what happened, but shortly before the episode ends, Clara sees the Doctor’s ghost floating her way and knows that something went wrong. 

TO BE CONTINUED …

My thoughts?

It’s been a while since I’ve really been enthusiastic about a Doctor Who episode, but I thoroughly enjoyed Under the Lake. It was scary, it was funny and it had a lot more Doctor than in the past couple of episodes!

First I want to appreciate that the BBC included a deaf actress/signing person into this episode. The community is barely represented on television. (Except for Switched at Birth and Nyle participating in America’s Next Top Model not much comes to mind.) So, I think it is great that they found a way to incorporate it in the show.

But on to the content of the episode: By using plain old ghosts, they definitely toned it down a little, but that is maybe a thing I liked about the episode. Not everything needs to be ampted up all the time! Also, I think it’s great that the TARDIS stepped up her game and decided to bring them there because she knew the Doctor was needed. Whenever the TARDIS doesn’t really want to be at a place but brings the Doctor anyway, I have the feeling it’s going to be good.

Speaking of the Doctor, he was on fire tonight – speaking to the TARDIS, having index cards to master human communication and just delivering some great lines in general (“So who’s in charge now? I need to know who to ignore.”). He was back to old spirits, being as enthusiastic as a child about finding out that there are real ghosts and not knowing what they actually want. And those ghosts were actually scary! The real shocker was the cliffhanger though and I have no idea what it means. I can’t imagine the Doctor dying – not like this, he would regenerate after all, right? Either way, I had fun tonight and am really looking forward to next week!

What did you think? Did you think it was as entertaining as me or was it more flawed than I wanted to admit?

P.S.: Unfortunately it seems like the sonic sunglasses weren’t a one-time-thing, but rather are here to stay. I am sorry, but they just don’t do it for me. And as I said last time, I won’t ever accept them.