|The Doctor and co go inside a Dalek using Fantastic|
Voyage technology. From Doctorwhotv
In a bizarre return to Series Seven's habit of The Doctor having to pick up his companion from a dull(ish) daily life, The Doctor happens upon an ailing ship escaping from some Daleks, and is called upon by committed soldier Journey Blue (Zawe Ashton) to help repair a Dalek who wishes to exterminate his own kind. Picking up Clara (who is currently having a Meet Cute with new regular Danny Pink (Samuel Anderson)), he and a group of soldiers use shrinking technology to become microscopic and enter the Dalek's body. Along the way, a soldier called Ross (Ben Crompton, Pramface) gets executed by the Dalek's internal antibodies and The Doctor coldly uses his death to hack into the Dalek's security. Once they've fixed the Dalek (now known as Rusty), he reverts to being a genocidal maniac and The Doctor and Clara have to show Rusty the meaning of beauty once more. Rusty kills all the bad Daleks and hurrah the day is saved, minus a few lives.
The episode felt a little rushed - probably because of last week's more palatable slower pace, which was unusually good for NuWho despite the content surrounding it. This mainly came from the protrusion of Danny Pink's introduction into the story - instead of us getting time to know our guest cast, we got character development for him, and the result was a set of characters whose personalities, initially, were very bare boned. Ashton's acting more than made up for that with her character, but it didn't help the other three guest characters any, or the story's concept, which seemed to hit its big twist barely ten minutes into its execution. Instead of getting a chance to soak into this otherwise fascinating world the story was kicking up, we were forced to sit and watch the introduction of a character who really deserved his own episode to develop instead of being tacked onto this one.
|"Rusty" - a name which I can't help thinking is a stab at|
Russell T Davies' fan nickname.
From the BBC
I don't know what to say, I enjoyed this week. Its flaws came in terms of its tone and its execution - a lot of its darker ideas needed more time to sink in, and the characterisations could have been a bit stronger. As an experience though, as a cohesive episode, it was a remarkable change of pace and one which felt good because the characters (sans Doctor, of course) acted more or less how real people would act. I know it's tragic that that's a selling point in Doctor Who these days, but there it is. Into The Dalek was not as strong a story as some of its major influences - something that was especially notable when Rusty quoted the eponymous character from Dalek at the end of the episode. But all the same, it's a turn up for the books in terms of Moffat's era. And I can only hope that this upturn is consistent.
NEXT WEEK: It's Robin Hood! WITH ROBOTS! It's Robot of Sherwood.