Now that’s out of the way, it’s time to review this week’s Doctor Who, in which the regular gang finally stop fretting about the uber-plot (mostly) and go for an adventure on the high seas with Hugh Bonneville. Was it a pleasant getaway, or a nightmarish mini-break?
Internet Pirate Jokes Remain Unfunny
Well, the main selling point is definitely the pirate theme. Hugh Bonneville carries off the beard and swashbuckling with verve, and the regular cast manage to make their jokes about the accompanying tropes without being too annoying. In fact, as often the case on this show, the camaraderie makes an otherwise ho-hum story a lot more enjoyable.
Because make no mistake, strip out the piracy and the banter and there’s a lot that’s familiar. Once the ultimate truth behind this week’s villain, randomly played by Lily Cole, is revealed, I found myself thinking back to which episodes I’d seen it in before. (The most obvious example I came up with was “The Doctor Dances” in series one.)
Still, even if the plot was a little standard, I thought it was a decent enough execution. The slow reveal of the black spot was paced dramatically, and the child actor playing Bonneville’s son wasn’t as annoying as he could’ve been.
Ongoing Plots Remain Ongoing
Although we got a week off from being dominated by the mega-plots, we had a few call-backs. Amy still might be pregnant, the Doctor is still scheduled to get burnt and, in case we didn’t grasp it last week, the woman behind the window is Clearly Important. All that only makes it seem more comfy and familiar, really; a standard adventure with hinting, just like the old days.
Oh, and Poor Rory, the victim once more. I still like him as the struggling everyman, but he must stop getting kidnapped/insulted/killed by everything they meet. Otherwise, even the viewer will start to agree Amy would be better off with the Doctor.
So a heavily regular episode, bit slow at times, but just about entertaining. Check it out on iPlayer, let us know if you feel the same. Not to mention, are you excited about next week’s Neil Gaiman-penned episode, from which we’re all expecting massive innovation?