Monday, January 21, 2013

Day Twenty-one - Dr.Who: Series 1, Episode 7, or "Hey! That's... that's Simon Pegg!"

I was actually pretty excited to see this episode when watching it's preview a few days ago during the credits roll for Dalek. You can pretty much guess why.

I mean, Simon Pegg.

That's all that had to be said.

The man (and his contemporaries, Edgar Wright and Nick Frost) helped revitalize not only the zombie movie, not only the buddy-cop movie, but also the Mission Impossible franchise (at least, he and JJ Abrams were the only reasons I cared about MI:3... and he, Jeremy Renner, and Brad Bird were the only reasons I cared about MI:GP).

I'm trying to figure out, though, if he's the sole reason why I enjoyed the episode or not.

Honestly, I can't tell.

I say this because, well... even the non-Editor bits of the episode don't seem to bother me all that much. Sure it has an overly-simple solution and a pretty contrived future-tech for gathering and sifting through the countless teraquads of information from across the galaxy, but... it seems like an actually solid speculative scifi venture.

I mean, using the human brain as a temporary (or permanent, in the case of the Editor's staff) processor is the stuff of a great scifi short story of the likes of Phillip K Dick or Kurt Vonnegut. Sure, they way they go about it here is just cheeky and lame, but it's a solid trope.

Not to mention the fact that, thanks to one-off companion Adam, we actually get a real human reaction to the perils of time travel.

Granted, we've seen Rose have an existential crisis (The End of the World) and seen her react to the consequences of her becoming a time traveler (Aliens of London/World War Three)... but, both times, I felt very little from her in terms of actual emotional conflict. It just felt like Billie Piper rehearsing lines... not Rose Tyler actually living them.

Here, Adam (Bruno Langley), actually feels like a man out of time... and it's interesting to see how he deals with it. It feels real. Natural, even.

Personally, I think this is the best episode of the lot, so far. Sure, it still has its requisite cheese, mostly in the form of its random alien villain who, for most of the episode, isn't seen. When we do get the CGI reveal, it's mostly meh and its ultimate fate annoying keeps with Dr.Who's typical deus ex solutions, but oh well.

Simon Pegg.

And that's all that needs to be said, really.

Too bad he couldn't turn out to be the Master. I really could've dug that. I'm still looking forward to Derek Jacobi's version, though.

You know who would make a great Doctor (if he's not too busy)?

Stephen Fry!

Until tomorrow, Potatoes~

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