Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Doctor Who - The Unquiet Dead Review

From the get-go episode three of the new series feels 100% more like vintage Doctor Who to me; an in-the-past setting combined with apparent supernatural elements and some great sets. The effects were better than earlier episodes with the blue "ghosts"and the undead make-up looking pretty convincing. Throw in an appearance by Charles Dickens which was handled pretty well (it didn't feel too much like a "this week's famous person from the past slot"), a nicely paced story, good acting from the supporting players and, well, a great plot. This felt altogether more like it, Doctor Who back on track. According to the Mind Robber site, this was the first episode not written by the series head writer and producer Russell T. Davis. Based on this showing, it looks like Davis needs to stick to producing and leave the writing to others more suited to the task. The best episode of the series so far.

One of the great things about it was that the set-up was handled quickly, with no fuss and the TARDIS' usual hiccup- instead of travelling to Venice in 1860, they end up in Cardiff in 1869. A nice little touch. It was also darker than the first two episodes, which is exactly how I remember Doctor Who, and it seemed to take the material seriously. Compared to this the first two shows come across more as programming for a younger audience.

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