The Doctor has popped in and out of the lives of Amy Pond and Rory Williams for the last three seasons (or in their time, ten years). Just as they’re getting used to life at home, the Doctor pops back in again in the episode “The Power of Three,” as do millions of black cubes worldwide. The enigmatic boxes do absolutely nothing but sit.
In the Doctor Who episode “A Town Called Mercy,” we have a duel at High Noon, a preacher who recites the Lord’s Prayer, an undertaker who measures the Doctor for a casket, and pretty much every stock character you would expect from a Western on TV. Actually, “A Town Called Mercy” could have collapsed under the weight of its clichés, but it managed to save itself with some thoughts on redemption. (That, and the awesome Ben Browder, the actor who rocked Farscape and two+ seasons of Stargate: SG1.)
Forget the drama of Doctor Who’s first episode of season 7. Episode 2 of Doctor Who is pure screwball comedy. Unfortunately, although the episode had its charms, for the most part it was too, well, screwy. It’s as if the plot were lost in the fluffy fun of the episode.
When last we left the Doctor (Matt Smith) at the end of Doctor Who’s season 6, he had faked his death in a spectacular way. At the start of season 7, that, as well as his marriage to River Song, isn’t important. What’s important is, 1) The Doctor is back in a new adventure, and 2) We’ve just seen one of the more remarkable bait-and-switches in Doctor Who history.
Caroline Skinner, producer of Doctor Who, knows everything there is to know about the upcoming season of the BBC TV show. She was either gracious enough to share some details with me or sadistic enough to torment me by not revealing all. Either way, I know that the next few episodes are what she considers “five big blockbuster movies every week,” and they sound exciting and dramatic (and not here soon enough).
I learned a few things about Karen Gillan, who plays Amy Pond in the BBC TV show, Doctor Who, recently. She wants to act in a comedy. She can’t swim. She has absolutely perfect skin. Oh, and she understands exactly why the Weeping Angels, one of Doctor Who’s most frightening creations, are so godawful chilling.
After three years plus several specials of fawning over David Tennant’s version of the Doctor in Doctor Who, I admit that I wasn’t immediately bowled over by Matt Smith’s performance. But his youthful take on the 11th iteration of the character slowly won me over, and by the end of Smith’s second season, I thought I would need a dose of methadone to keep me going until the the next season, in August 2012.