And now, time for Doctor Who and some thoughts about Amy's Choice:
- Normally I don't sum up until the bottom of the page, but I'll get to the crux of the matter first.
Hell's teeth, that was a boring episode.
It's called Amy's Choice, so I think okay, a chance for Amy to be proactive and lead the story and make an important decision of some sort. But what does it all add up to? Well, not a lot, really.
I think a lot of the problem is that Rory still has no personality to speak of at all. To me, he's not a character, he's just a placeholder for one. "Choosing" Rory feels completely unconvincing, because a) I have every faith that she'll be dithering between the two of them again within half an episode (let's face it, what would the scripts do without jealous bickering as a fallback?), and b) if the Doctor had been killed instead, she'd have picked the universe where HE was still alive. If your plot hinges on a Big Decision (TM) but you can flip it in the opposite direction that easily, I fear there's been a drama failure somewhere.
- The dilemma was also smoothed over by the fact that there was no sense of Amy or Rory considering the forthcoming baby to be a person. It was something nebulous that Rory seemed to want badly for symbolic reasons, but they didn't talk TO it or mention it as a separate entity that grew and kicked and whom they'd got to know. It was just a fake plastic comedy bump, so it was never considered as a potential loss. (And hey it's not as if this stuff is too grown-up to mention on Who: remember how torn up Donna was about her dream children in Forest of the Dead?).
- Did I miss a line about the three of them not being able to leave the TARDIS control room in the Cold Star dream? Because otherwise the bit with Amy asking about warm clothes seems weird: surely she's seen the wardrobe before, given that she entered the TARDIS clad only in her nightwear? Or has the wardrobe got nothing in it these days except a huge rack of miniskirts and bow ties, none of which are suitable for warding off hypothermia?
- Once again, we spin the Doctor Who script room Wheel of Peril and the everyday thing that is chosen to become a source of fear to small and gullible children is.... old people! I foresee a few postponed Sunday trips to Grandma's house this week, and many reassurances that no, she doesn't have a green eyeball living in her mouth, she's just eating a Brussels sprout. Coming soon, a scary intergalactic enemy that lives down a toilet and will only stay away from you if you refuse to have a bath ever again!
- There was an old Doctor from Gallifrey
Who ended up throwing his life away
He let down his friends...
Or did he? That depends
On which person's writing the script today...
- It's mildly interesting that the Doctor's dark side is quite proud of his conquests. And Queen Elizabeth I is fast becoming the one anecdote that the Doctor trots out to prove that he's a PLAYA. (That's in the "street" sense, not in the Spanish beach sense.)
- I did like "If we're going to die, let's die looking like a Peruvian folk band." Sadly the Dream Lord can't die, otherwise he would have shunned the Peruvian look in favour of dressing as Tom Jones circa 1973, complete with chest wig and medallion. I don't know about Dream Lords, but I may have a small nightmare about that outfit.
- I suppose the question on everyone's lips is whether the Dream Lord is the Valeyard. Frankly, I don't really care. He seemed to be an excuse for Toby Jones to pull a lot of faces, do a bunch of costume changes and smirk knowingly. There's quite enough knowing smirking on this show already without people's dark sides muscling in on the act.
- A little purple space dog? That would be a tawdry quirk, but apparently having a little SILVER space dog wouldn't be. Perhaps purple is too last season, but metallics are forever, dahling.
- I suspect that the copious (and never really explained) bird song was actually a non-too-subtle comment on the pernicious nature of Twitter. Tweeting is evil, you heard it here first! #doctorwho #secretagenda #conspiracytheories
- Was this meant to be a money-saving bottle episode? The clue being that they spent a load of time on the TARDIS set, and the rest went on filming in a park full of mud, plus a shedload of fake spray-on snow stuff, probably left over from last Christmas and now available at a knock-down price.
- Psychic pollen: like sex pollen, but suitable for family viewing!
- In conclusion: I was worried that this would be too much like one of the Trickster episodes of Sarah Jane Adventures. In actual fact, it was worse. (Sorry for maligning you, Sarah Jane.) I do hope next week is better, but my hopes are distressingly low.