Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Doctor Who: The Doctor Dances (2)

Doctor: 'Go to your room. I mean it. I'm very, very angry with you. I'm very, very cross. Go to your room. [Pause] I'm really glad that worked. They would have been terrible last words.'

Not only would they have been terrible last words, they were a slightly ropey resolution to last week's cliffhanger. I suppose there was a modicum of logic to it, but it still feels like we were cheated. Still, not to worry—there was enough good stuff in tonight's episode to make up for its somewhat shaky start.

Despite Rose's burgeoning interesting in Captain Jack, the flames of romance were slightly dampened this week after Rose discovered that Jack was a con man. His intention was to sell them a broken down ambulance, under the pretence of it being a Chula warship, and then have it bombed out of existence before they could recover it. Unfortunately for Jack, the Doctor and Rose aren't stupid. Yet despite Jack's plan being exposed, it's virtually impossible to dislike him. He came clean in such a matter-of-fact way, that forgiveness seemed almost mandatory—a testament to Jack's charm and likability.

I'd already guessed that Jamie was Nancy's son. When she said to Ernie 'he always comes after me' it was obvious that he had some specific interest in her. Couple that with his frequent refrain of 'are you my mummy' and the truth was self-evident. And for once—everyone lived! This is the first episode of the new series where no one actually died, although we didn't really have a clearly defined villain. We were told about the Chula, but didn't see them, and the nanobots, although responsible for the 'deaths' of dozens, were only doing their job. There was nothing inherently malicious about them.

Bags of humour, too, this episode. The gun turning into a banana scene was fun, and I had to suppress a snigger when Jack called Rose 'flag girl' and the Doctor 'U-boat Captain'. Wow... yeah! I hadn't really noticed before, but yeah! In fact, this whole episode was chock-a-block full of witty banter. Having Captain Jack along certainly provided a nice opposite for the Doctor. Jack seemed to out-gun him in every department. Everything he had was better, or bigger, or slicker—which makes you wonder whether Jack's all front and no substance. Yet in the end he made the selfless choice, almost forfeiting his own life to save a bunch of folk he barely knew. Thank goodness the dancing Doctor saved him!

And it seems that no matter who catches Rose's eye, she always ends up going back to the Doctor. I loved it when she said 'I trust him because he's like you.' Perhaps not the best method of judging a person's character, but it was a nice sentiment, and demonstrated Rose's growing respect for the Doctor. He may not be as handsome as Captain Jack, he may not 'dance' as well, and his TARDIS may not be the babe-magnet that Jack's ship is—but the Doctor's dependable, loyal and heroic, and it's these qualities that keep Rose coming back.

Other Thoughts:

—It was revealed on Doctor Who Confidential (the making-of show that follows every broadcast episode) that 'dancing' is a metaphor for sex—hence the Doctor's offence at Rose's comment that he never dances.

—The German bomb that Jack was riding had 'schlechter wolf' stenciled on the side -- which when translated means... you guessed it... Bad Wolf!

—Both songs played in tonight's episode were Glenn Miller tunes: 'Moonlight Serenade' and 'In The Mood.'


Doctor: 'Funny little human brains. How do you get around in those things?'
Rose: 'When he's stressed, he likes to insult species.'

Doctor: 'Go, now! Don't drop the banana!'
Rose: 'Why not?'
Doctor: 'Good source of potassium!'

Captain Jack: 'Who has a sonic screwdriver?'
Doctor: 'I do.'
Captain Jack: 'Who looks at a screwdriver and thinks, ooh, this could be a little more sonic?'
Doctor: 'What, you've never been bored? Never had a long night? Never had a lot of cabinets to put up?'

Doctor: 'Come on. Assets? Assets?'
Captain Jack: 'Well, I've got a banana. And in a pinch, you could put up some shelves.'

Doctor: 'So where'd you pick this one up?'
Rose: 'Doctor!'
Captain Jack: 'She was hanging from a barrage balloon. I had an invisible spaceship. I never stood a chance.'

Rose: 'Okay, so he's vanished into thin air. Why is it always the great-looking ones who do that?'
Doctor: 'I'm making an effort not to be insulted.'
Rose: 'I mean, men.'
Doctor: 'Okay, thanks. That really helped.'

Rose: 'Why don't you trust him?'
Doctor: 'Why do you?'
Rose: 'Saved my life. Bloke-wise, that's up there with flossing.'

Rose: 'You've got the moves? Show me your moves.'
Doctor: 'Rose, I'm trying to resonate concrete.'

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