Monday, August 25, 2014

Doctor Who--"The Lodger"

“The Lodger” serves as the late season budget saver in which only one of the main characters is prominently featured in a small scale adventure. Such episodes tend to be hit and miss. I am trying to make up my mind whether I liked “The Lodger’ or think it is too frivolous to dislike. Whichever I ultimately decide, it is safe to say it did what it was supposed to do--give the eleventh doctor some charm.

The Doctor is stranded in modern day with Amy still on the TARDIS. She is stuck is some sort f limbo, but can still communicate with the Doctor through a headpiece. The Doctor answers an add for a flatmate to give him time and a place to investigate the strage goings on upstairs.

In the interim, he befriends his new flat mate, Craig, a shiftless couch potato, and his girlfriend, Sophie. The story is split between the doctor badly blending in with humans by misunderstanding customs and day-to-day activities and makinn Craig’s life miserable by being better at him in everything--soccer, his call center job, and even in wooing Sophie.

While I appreciate the fish out of water comedy, I have a hard time believing the Doctor has not had enough experience with humanity to fit in better than he did. It took a big suspension of disbelief for him to be so at the mercy of ordinary custom, but I will forgive it. There was a certain charm to it all.

One nifty point--Matt Smith was a gifted soccer player in his younger days, but a leg injury kept him from going pro. That really was smith who was dominating on the soccer field in the episode. England could have used him in their World cup match against the United States today, no/

The main villain is revealed to be a hologram searching for a new pilot for his ship. Te upstairs room is actually a cloaked ship. Getting rid of it involved another love conquers all resolution in which Craig and Sophie find each other because of the Doctor. It all ends with Amy, returning from limbo safe and sound, finding Rory’s engagement ring. Apparently, memories all comes back to her in an instant, but that is the cliffhanger, so we have to wait util next week to know for certain.

Pardon my American ignorance, but I believe James Corden, who played Craig, is fairly well known in the United Kingdom for playing similar roles. I felt like the script did not give him a whole lot to do. In fact, he reminded me of Andy Richter constantly playing straight man to the doctor’s Conan O’Brien. Corden and Richter do look a lot alike. That thought should get some Brits throwing tomatoes at me, no?

“The Lodger” was an enjoyable, trite breather before the two part finale.

Rating: *** (out of 5)

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