Game of Thrones: Season 7, Episode 3 – The Queen’s Justice

“If we don’t put aside our enmities we will all die. And then it won’t matter whose skeleton sits on the Iron Throne.”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

A talkier episode than last week for Game of Thrones, but a thrilling one nonetheless. There was plenty of plot development going on, but aside from the usual intrigue, the focal point of this ep was on the long-awaited meeting of Daenerys Targaryen with Jon Snow. It didn’t disappoint. Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 7, Episode 3 – The Queen’s Justice”

Game of Thrones: Season 7, Episode 2 – Stormborn

“You wish to know where my true loyalties lie? Not with any King or Queen, but with the people. The people who suffer under despots and prosper under just rule. The people whose hearts you aim to win.”

(SPOILER ALERT!)

Perhaps it’s a result of this year’s shorter than usual season run, but this week’s second episode of Game of Thrones seemed to really ramp up the pace after last week’s relatively sedate scene-setter. The show’s always been unpredictable in giving us eps packed with intrigue, thrills and spectacle fairly early in the run; but never so early, as I recall, as the very second episode. Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 7, Episode 2 – Stormborn”

Game of Thrones: Season 7, Episode 1 – Dragonstone

“Shall we begin?”

(SPOILER ALERT!)

In these ratings-hungry times, most genre shows tend to open their new seasons with slam-bang episodes full of action. There’ll be lots of explosions, or a giant space battle, or hordes of marauding zombies. Game of Thrones, secure in its audience, doesn’t need to do that (well, maybe the zombies), and its season openers tend to be more sedate. With its multitude of major characters and intersecting, complex plotlines, showrunners Benioff and Weiss usually choose to catch us up on where they all are, what they’re doing, and what they’re planning to do next. It’s like the opening gambits in a game of chess. Continue reading “Game of Thrones: Season 7, Episode 1 – Dragonstone”

Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 12 – The Doctor Falls

“Winning? Is that what you think it’s about? I’m not trying to win! I’m not doing this because I want to beat someone, because I hate someone, or because I want to blame someone. It’s not because it’s fun. God knows, it’s not because it’s easy. It’s not even because it works, because it hardly ever does. I do what I do because it’s right! Because it’s decent! And above all, it’s kind!”

(SPOILER ALERT!)

It’s (nearly) the end, but the moment has been prepared for. We knew from last week (and, let’s face it, some rather too revelatory pre-publicity) that a regeneration was in the offing for Peter Capaldi’s Twelfth Doctor, a man who seems to have spent much of this year trying to nobly sacrifice himself for the greater good. The Doctor Falls, steeped in the references to the show’s past so beloved of writer Steven Moffat, finally gave him his wish. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 12 – The Doctor Falls”

Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 11 – World Enough and Time

“So, a 400 mile long spaceship reversing away from the gravitational pull of a black hole. We having fun yet?”

(SPOILER ALERT!)

Quite the fan pleasing episode from Steven Moffat this week! I’ve said a few times that this season, while generally rather good, has felt more low key than the last, which, let’s remember, opened with a sequel to Genesis of the Daleks featuring Missy and UNIT. It’s clear now that Moffat was saving that sort of thing for the end of the season this time – with a triple whammy of ‘Genesis of the Cybermen’ featuring both Missy and her previous incarnation, in the first ‘multi-Master’ story the show’s ever done. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 11 – World Enough and Time”

Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 10 – The Eaters of Light

“They think these cairns are gateways to another world. Given that they keep going on about gates, possibly they’re right.”

(SPOILER ALERT!)

Welcome back Rona Munro, the first writer from classic Who to get a gig on the new show, and still one of very few women to have written for the show in either era. Her 1989 story Survival was the very last of the classic run, and a favourite of mine; it’s an intelligent, mature story that tackles a number of themes the show had barely touched on before. She’s also an award-winning novelist and playwright, so it’s fair to say that my expectations for The Eaters of Light was pretty high. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 10 – The Eaters of Light”

Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 9 – Empress of Mars

“Don’t belong here? We’re British. Mars is part of the Empire now!”

(SPOILER ALERT!)

Well that was exciting, wasn’t it? A thrilling roller coaster ride in which a reptilian Ice Queen’s hard-hearted ambitions were thwarted by a selfless, mild-mannered man appealing to a sense of honour and justice. But enough about the General Election, there was an episode of Doctor Who on too (b’doom tish). Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 10, Episode 9 – Empress of Mars”