Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Doctor Who: Series Six, Part One

Since they only represent the first half of a season, it’s difficult to give any kind of fair review to this block of seven episodes. They begin strong, with loads of promise, but then slowly peter away into utter mediocrity. At the end of the semi-revelatory seventh episode, it’s still only mid-season, so it’s entirely probable the series will redeem itself later this year in the final six installments. It needs to, because if it doesn’t, Season Six could go down as the weakest since the series re-started in 2005.

But who would’ve thought such thoughts upon broadcast, given the way this block starts out? The opening United States-set and partially lensed two-parter – comprised of “The Impossible Astronaut” and “Day of the Moon” – is gloriously near-perfect; a tale of Richard Nixon, Neil Armstrong’s left foot, and the most unsettling aliens the series has unveiled since the Weeping Angels. The Silence were seeded throughout Season Five, and hence had a lot to live up to, and while there’s no question they’re creepy looking, what really sells them is the premise: beings that edit themselves from your memory the moment you stop looking at them. With the Angels you at least knew they were there, so there was something to fight against. The Silence make the battle considerably trickier and disturbing. The goings-on are helmed by the great Toby Haynes (“The Big Bang,” “A Christmas Carol”), who once again proves that he’s the ideal director for bringing Steven Moffat’s words to life. Even if there’s a bit of rubbish in the script, Haynes is able to convincingly gloss over it so viewers barely notice. Further, these two episodes set up the season with a handful of different mysterious complexities that promise greatness to come. But will it?

Read the rest of this Blu-ray review by clicking here and visiting Bullz-Eye.