Neil Gaiman and Doctor Who. What could possibly go wrong?
Nightmare in Silver written by Neil Gaiman has the Doctor, Clara and the two children she had been babysitting at the beginning half of this season brought two a defunct and deserted amusement park.
The amusement park is not entirely deserted, a squad of humans and a shop keeper are eeking out an existence until the children are introduced to the Cyberman controlled by Warwick Davis. Yep, Wicket puppeteering a Cyberman.
The Cybermen have since been defeated and nothing but museum relics since the events at Demon’s Run/Closing Time and while the Doctor knows something is wrong he can’t put his finger on it until he finds Cyberworms scrounging for tech and quickly find that nothing on the planet is what it seems.
After the end of last week’s episode I was a little more disheartened to find out the kids were coming along this week. The good news is the episode skips over any scenes of the Doctor’s reluctance to let the children come along and just drops them in. The other bit of good news is they don’t whine for too long since they’re automatically upgraded by the Cybermen worms.
And so is the Doctor.
After the events of Canary Wharf the cybernetic upgrade process is a bit less bloody and more Borgish. This may have something to do with the fact these Cybermen are the originals and not the alt. versions we’ve been dealing with for the past six years.
So what happens when the Time Lord gets taken over by a cyberworm? What should have been a lovely scene between Doctor and his new found unwelcomed guest. A good side and bad side of the Doctor. Hell, even pulling a version of the Doctor to taunt his current self would have been a great idea. Instead it allows Matt Smith to mug even more so which is like giving Jim Carey a 48oz of Coke and a bag of pixy sticks and allowing him to run wild through a library.
I’m going to skip over the bionic blur of power walking the Cybermen can all of sudden do. I take the slow stomping of metal over the bionic/bullet time upgrade any day.
Warwick Davis’s character along with the squad are given a good arc allowing Clara to expand from companion to leader against an unstoppable foe.
Overall this episode felt like it should have been better. It’s Matt Smith trying to be evil that never really pans out. The Doctor’s Wife felt better since we Amy and Rory didn’t have this “who are they” story line dangling over their heads and Michael Sheen’s disembodied villain was creepy without having to eat scenery.
I should make mention that BBC has debut a 3min video of He Said She Said of the Doctor and Clara talking about each other walking between prop pieces of episodes that could have easily been a TARDIS storage room. In my opinion this 3min segment that leads up the season finale next week is better than this entire season since it brings up the weak storyline of who Clara Oswald is.
I think this season will be the last I post reviews of Doctor Who. I’m finding the childlike storytelling to be too vanilla when other shows like Orphan Black, Person of Interest or Defiance is growing with the audience instead of continuing to be a show to make kids hide behind the couch.
I hope the 50th Anniversary episode makes up for all this weak half season.