Doctor Who: Season 12, Episode 5 – Fugitive of the Judoon

“I don’t think you are who you say you are – or even who you think you are.”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

Well, this season of Doctor Who suddenly got a LOT more interesting. Fugitive of the Judoon, like several of its characters, was a clever episode that was emphatically not what it seemed at first, and undoubtedly the most intriguing story since Chris Chibnall took over as showrunner. And while it’s no disrespect to him, this was in large part because of its deliberate echoes of the previous two showrunners, both of whom loomed large over the concepts, plots and characters appearing here. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 12, Episode 5 – Fugitive of the Judoon”

Doctor Who: Season 12, Episode 4 – Nikola Tesla’s Night of Terror

“Nikola Tesla – you’re going to change the world. But first, you’re gonna save it.”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

After last week’s uncoordinated mess of an episode, it was rather a relief to come back to what’s admittedly become a formulaic story for Doctor Who since 2005 – the ep centred around a well-known historical figure. Since The Unquiet Dead, these have been a staple of the show; but often the story ends up playing second fiddle to the fannish exaltation of whichever historical figure is on centre stage. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 12, Episode 4 – Nikola Tesla’s Night of Terror”

Doctor Who: Season 12, Episode 3 – Orphan 55

“You want me to tell you that Earth’s going to be ok – but I can’t. In your time, humanity’s busy arguing over the washing up while the house burns down.”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

Doctor Who is too preachy these days”. That’s a view I’ve been hearing on and off since the show’s 2005 return after its lengthy break. It’s been heard more frequently since Chris Chibnall took over, usually as a coded way of justifying unjustifiable objections to a female Doctor and a multi-ethnic regular cast. However, after the sledgehammer unsubtle final speech of Orphan 55, it was a view I was dismayed to find myself agreeing with for the first time – although possibly not for the reasons you’d think, and certainly not for the reasons mentioned above. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 12, Episode 3 – Orphan 55”

Doctor Who: Season 12, Episodes 1&2 – Spyfall

“Doctor – the security of the planet is at stake. Can we rely on you?”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

OK, so it’s been a busy couple of weeks for me, being in the UK when the first ep of Doctor Who’s new season was broadcast and flying back to Barcelona pretty much the next day, then getting to grips with a packed new teaching schedule. The upshot is that I haven’t much of a chance, till now, to jot down my thoughts on this big, expansive season opener. But also, crucially, it means I’ve now seen both parts of it. Continue reading “Doctor Who: Season 12, Episodes 1&2 – Spyfall”

Watchmen: Season 1, Episode 9 – See How They Fly

“Great. You stopped the clock. What happens if it starts up again?”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

Tricky things, endings. As Game of Thrones recently proved, it can be very, very difficult to get them right in a way that satisfies the fans’ anticipation. Watchmen may not have had to cap off eight years of storytelling, but it’s packed so much intricacy and so many puzzles into its short runtime that a satisfying ending was something about which I was sceptical. Especially given that the showrunner was Damon Lindelof, who had so singularly failed to deliver endings that satisfied the promises in Lost and Prometheus. Continue reading “Watchmen: Season 1, Episode 9 – See How They Fly”

Watchmen: Season 1, Episode 8 – A God Walks into Abar

“Which came first, the chicken or the egg? The answer appears to be both – at the same time.”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

The Doctor will see you now. Yes, after hanging heavy over the narrative since the very first ep, Dr Manhattan finally put in a proper appearance this week. And what an appearance it was, capturing perfectly Alan Moore’s complex character and suddenly providing us with a barrage of explanation for the show’s mysteries, all of which make perfect sense in retrospect. Continue reading “Watchmen: Season 1, Episode 8 – A God Walks into Abar”

Watchmen: Season 1, Episode 7 – An Almost Religious Awe

“It is extremely difficult to be a white man in America right now. So I’m thinking, why not be a blue one?”

(SPOILER WARNING!)

Watchmen, the show, set its thematic stall out from the very beginning. Opening with that racially motivated massacre in 1921 Tulsa, it was clear that skin colour was the biggest driving force in this plot. Yet it’s been hard to forget that alongside white, black, and varying shades of brown, there’s another skin colour in this narrative. And it’s blue. Continue reading “Watchmen: Season 1, Episode 7 – An Almost Religious Awe”