Sunday, August 24, 2014

Doctor Who--"Partners in Crime"

Savor these episodes, Whovians. We will not get another full season until 2010 once they are gone. That means each episode has to deliver. Oftentimes there are a couple of duds in a season. With only thirteen episodes a year, they stick out like a sore thumb. I doublt feared upon hearing Catherine Tate would return as Donna Noble they would all be grossly unappealing. I haveto confess she toned down her grating comic persona for this one and was actually enjoyable. I think Russell T. Davies fell into a couple of his usual traps, but I liked this one overall.

Donna has a had a change of heart since last Christmas. She regrets not taking the Doctor up on his offer to join him in his travels. Since then she has been investigating every possible alien activity in the United Kingdom hoping to run into him. Her latest effort is investigating Adipose Industries, run by a Ms. Foster. Adipose manufactures a miracle diet pill that has attracted the attention of both Donna and the Doctor, although they do not run into each other until the middle of the episode.

The diet pills actually turn human fat into newborn aliens called Adipose. It is illegal to use backward planets like Earth for incubation, so Foster has to eliminate the Doctor and Donna while they try to save the million Londoners who have taken the pills from being converted completely into the little critters. After a lot of slapstick antics, it works. A mother ship (pardon the pun) returns for the children. Despite the Doctor’s efforts to save her, Foster is killed in order to cover up the breeding project.

The Doctor is a but gun shy about Donna joining him now. He still feels guilty about all the trouble Martha went through during the year he was held prisoner by the Master. He is also uneasy about how quickly his companions develop romantic feelings for him. Donna’s response that he is a weird alien she would nevere fall for seems to assure him all she wants is to be a part of something bigger than what her humdrum life promises. Before leaving in the TARDIS, she asks a blonde woman to leave a message for her mother when she comes to pick up her stranded car. When the woman turns around, we see it is Rose. She disappears into thin air.

This was not a bad episode. The first one of the season is often a lot of set up for what is to come. The main menace is often inconsequential to the Doctor hooking up with his new companion and establishing a season long plot thread. The motif held true here. I was not expecting to see Rose again so soon. We all expected her return to be in the final three episodes of the season.

It was worth the price of admission just for that. But like I said above, RTD falls into his usual traps here. Once the doctor and Donna hooked up, it was Lucy and Ethel versus aliens. Donna’s is hanging off a window washer’s perch. There is an investigative journalist who keeps getting tied up. But all that is fine compared to the infant Adipose themselves. They are too darn cute. It is annoying and also disturbing. Have you ever seen that internet photo of a kitten beingchaed by a strange looking critter with the caption, “Every time you masturbate, God kills a kitten?” That is what these things looked like, save for the goofy grins. The special effects on them were awesome, do not get me wrong. But man, they were annoying.
Rating: *** (out of 5)

UPDATE: YouTube nevers fails, does it?

1 comment:

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