Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Doctor Who Episode Review: Let's Kill Hitler

After several months Doctor Who is back. The last episode shown, 'A Good Man Goes to War' was jam-packed with action, tension and a great climactic emotional revelation. So how does the follow up episode compare? Not very good I think.

Amy and Rory get in touch with the Doctor through a crop circle. When he arrives, the couples' other best friend Mels also appears. Tailed by the police she forces the Doctor and her friends at gunpoint into the Tardis. As she suggested they land in Hitler's office in 1938 after she shot the Tardis.

Meanwhile, a robot called the Teselacta, which is controlled by miniturised humans, tries to kill Hitler but gets stopped by the Doctors arrival.

I didn't like the plot, or that the title suggested much. I was surprised they would suddenly decide it would be OK to change history to such an extent as to kill one of the most historically significant figures. But I disliked the actual episode more. My wonder at altering the course of humanity continued with the time-traveling Teselecta. Surely, a bunch of time-travellers would know better. And if not, why didn't the Doctor have something to say about this?

Also, after shoving Hitler in a cupboard (is that supposed to be funny?) the whole idea of killing him is flung out the window, he is completely forgotten about by the time travellers and the fact that they are in Nazi Germany is never again mentioned. I just didn't like the way they seemed to make light of the situation they were in and their encounter with one of the most controversial and hated men in history, treating him more like Crazy Uncle Alfie than the leader of the Third Reich.

And then there's Mels. I guess the idea of Melody Pond/River Song finding a way to grow up with her parents and being the one who gets them together is nice. But the kind of person Mels seems to be just doesn't seem like someone Amy and Rory would be friends with. She's brash, always running from the law and inconsiderate while Amy and Rory are, or at least were before they met the Doctor, quiet, good-hearted people.

I did like Alex Kingston as always. She brings a great quality to the show. Her transformation from Melody Pond wanting to kill the doctor to the River Song we know was well done and emotional.

The episode was fast-paced and never really boring, but I found it overall too confusing, in bad taste and a weak story that never goes deep enough into any of its possibly interesting aspects. I hope this doesn't set the tone for the episodes to come.

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