Tuesday, October 20, 2015

NuWho Reviews: The Idiot's Lantern, The Impossible Planet, and The Satan Pit

The Idiot's Lantern

The Doctor and Rose want to see an Elvis Presley concert, and dress accordingly, which means they dress like they're from Grease. Musical outbursts not included.

So. Very. 50s.

Instead, they find themselves on the day of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation. However, that's not the most interesting part. The most interesting part is people being taken from their homes by police with sheets over their heads. The pair decide to ask a local family, the Connolly's, with Abusive 50s Dad, Put Upon Housewife, Average Ten Year Old, and Faceless Grandma.

What's that? Faceless grandmas weren't a normal thing in the 50s? Oh.

Rose investigates the local TV shop, and discovers an alien being called the Wire, which has nothing to do with the TV series. The Wire was all set to be executed for things, but turned itself into an electric impulse, and is trying to consume enough minds to recreate a body. She is played by Maureen Lipman, and does 50s ham and cheese very well.

So. Very. 50's.

The Doctor is talking to the police about this whole problem of "hiding away faceless people instead of helping them" when Rose is brought in, also faceless and you know what I had a lot of trouble watching this episode it made me uncomfortable. Why must there always be uncanny valley on Doctor Who?

Anyways, we have a big showdown at the Alexandra Palace tv station transmitter, and the Doctor captures the Wire on a cassette tape, which may or may not later be used by Decepticons. Put Upon Housewife kicks out Abusive 50s Dad, Average Ten Year Old offers to forgive Abusive 50s Dad for being, well, abusive, and Faceless Grandma is no longer Faceless.

All I asked was to not be Vernon Dursley. AND THEN THEY MADE ME VERNON DURSLEY.

It was an...interesting episode. The stereotypes were a bit much, but I did like the Wire as a villain. The Doctor asks Rose to remind him to tape over his recording of the Wire, but I like to think he forgot, because he tends to forget important things like this.

The Impossible Planet

The TARDIS lands in a base for deep-space explorations. There is creepy writing on the walls that the TARDIS can't translate, which means that it's older than old and probably involves eldritch horrors. (HAHAHAHAHA yeah)

Also there are Ood, which are basically the greatest things ever. They are a race of servant empaths that help out on the station. They meet the crew and discover they are exploring the planet Krop Tor, which orbits a black hole.

Yes, a planet orbiting the black hole. It's...shall we say...impossible?

Statistically speaking, everyone went to see this movie only for the exploding sunglasses.

Unfortunately, there is a convenient earthquake which causes the TARDIS to fall into the planet. Oh, and the Ood keep babbling creepy messages about a Beast awakening while attempting to hide their copies of Left Behind.

Then Toby gets possessed, and the Doctor decides to do something by poking at the creepy planet while everything is creepy. He and Ida find an eldritch disc that starts opening, and the Beast decides to possess all the Ood, call itself Legion because "Beast" just wasn't on the nose enough for it, and declare itself free.

Do you have a moment to talk about Tim LaHaye?

The Satan Pit

Rose and the last crew members flee from the possessed Ood, while the Doctor decides to rappel into the pit of death to poke at whatever is in there. (Let's face it-the Doctor's strategy is "poke it with a stick and see what happens". He is the Crocodile Hunter of space.)

The remaining crew try to knock out the Ood's telepathy, not realizing Toby is still possessed,  then try to escape on a rocket ship to Pigfarts and the Doctor discovers creepy wall paintings. The Beast was imprisoned in this place a long long long long long long time ago, like Lorien-old, and that the Beast's consciousness has already escaped. The Doctor decides to activate the failsafe to destroy the planet, and luckily finds his TARDIS, because if that hadn't happened then we wouldn't have any more episodes.

Meanwhile, Toby is still possessed, and now breathing fire because of course he is. Rose shoots out the rocket window and unhooks his harness. The shields go up, and the Doctor tows them to safety.

"Oh my God, Toby, do you have to eat peppers and onions before a flight?"

We get a last minute Aesop about Ood being people too.

And also they're awesome.

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