Doctor Doctor Who Guide

Russell fleshes out the back-story of Rose in an admirable attempt at making the Doctor and Rose more believable. The pre-credits flashback re-introduced us quickly to the events of 'Rose' and the revelation of a 12 months absence made me chuckle like an eight year old again. The plot shone through as great SF and could have been taken from a Pertwee (or early Tom Baker) episode - Aliens duping the public with a false 'first contact' crash landing in order to gather all the experts togethor at Number 10 - Genius (or as the Doctor would now say 'Fantastic)!

The effects were good - certainly an improvement on the good old days, but that is to be expected. Billie continues to impress with her great acting and gutsy exposition. Chris, whilst swaggering with confidence and his Northern yet other-world mannerisms, sometimes makes me cringe with some decidedly un-Doctor-ish dialogue ("trying to save the world", and don't get me started on the 'when did it become acceptable to use the word 'fart' topic'). I can't help but think that he struggles with the more eccentric and esoteric qualities required for the role. I also cringed at Russells beief that the kids absolutley require burping/f*rting (I hate that word) in the mix to entertain. When I was an eight year old, Doctor Who would never employ such cheap, tacky devices to keep me interested and entertained. Please Russell - no more wind gags! It just isn't the Doctor.

Knowing that Chris has 'thrown the scarf in' we can hope that the tenth Doctor will maintain that manic grin but temper it with a more confident darkness (something that even Sylvester McCoy managed to do well eventually). The Unquiet Dead remains my favourite so far (not a whiff of Russell and his wind gags) and was definitely genuine Doctor Who for my money. Maybe Russell should consider taking a step back from the scripting (although his plots are great) and allow writers to remain more faithful to his oft-quoted Doctor mythology. I look forward to 'Dalek'.

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