Wednesday, July 7, 2010

recommendation: "Doctor Who Series 5" (2010 TV series)

I've loved Doctor Who for several years now, but have I ever loved Doctor Who this much?

My Doctor is the Tenth Doctor, David Tennant's Doctor. The first episode I saw was Series 3's "Blink" (ah, terror). Then I watched Series 1 with the Ninth Doctor, Christopher Eccleston, and adored it, especially "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances."* But the conclusion to Series 3 is right up there with my most beloved episodes. The Tenth Doctor is simply unspeakably fabulous.

Companions are a trickier matter. Though I haven't seen all of Series 2, Rose is my favourite. I also love Martha, for very separate reasons. If I could be any companion, I'd be Martha. But then there was Series 4, and Donna. Oh, Donna. I wanted to like Donna. But I didn't really like Donna. I liked that Donna had opinions, and that she wasn't unnecessarily gaga over the Doctor, but I did not like that Donna always had to be right, could never be quiet for a second, and had to tell everyone all the time that she really definitely wasn't in love with the Doctor.

So, Series 5. New Doctor, new companion. I was hesitant about Matt Smith because I am still extremely attached to David Tennant. I really liked the first episode, especially the fishsticks. And then I really liked the second episode (those Smilers? dear god). I liked the revisited Weeping Angels, at least until they started contradicting their own rules.** I liked the dinosaur people (I like anything with dinosaurs, so this may not be a useful judgement) and I loved both "Vincent and the Doctor"*** and "The Lodger"+ in two entirely different ways.

And then I really liked Amy, the new companion, who's Rose/Martha/Donna blended with kooky, so that's awesome, even if she did inherit a bit of Donna's annoyance factor. I liked the purpose River Song serves in the narrative, even though I found her by turns badass and grating (River, you cad, stop toying with me!). And then I absolutely loved Rory, companion number two, with a fiery blazing passion. OH RORY. OH RORY. ♥

I was clearly teetering on the brink. Then, in episode eight, the Doctor said, "Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up," and I was done for. I was all Eleven's. He's so young and sprightly and so old and curmudgeonly; he's weird, but it's not a Tennantesque wacky. He's entirely new and yet entirely familiar and I love him. He speaks to me: "Never underestimate a Celt!"++

So after some reflection, soul-searching, and salving of my guilty conscience: I'm sorry, Ten, you're still my Doctor, but my tent is now firmly pitched in Eleven's camp. And Series 5, with its excellent use of the funny, the emotional, the strange, the wondrous, and the wibbly-wobbly timey-wimey stuff (the finale! I did not know true glory until I watched that finale!), might just be my favourite, too.

* Due, of course, to Captain Jack Harkness. I need say no more.
** I don't want to spoil anything, but seriously. You close your eyes, they attack you. That is incontrovertible.
*** I haven't cried that hard at the TV for a while, and I cry at the TV with alarming regularity. I'd start a New Who newcomer with this episode. Crazy adventure, fascinating historical personage, ooky-looking alien, heartbreak, and quiet truth: yes to all. Beautiful.
+ The Doctor trying to be "normal." I need say no more here, either.
++ Cue me squealing.


  1. I definitely want to check this out. I wonder if it's on channel 131? I'll go look.

  2. It's often on the Space Channel--I think they've got all five series in rotation. You can pretty well drop in anywhere (though it of course helps to start at the beginning!).