Monday, August 25, 2014

Doctor Who--"The Rings of Akhaten"

Yes, I know there is a new episode of Doctor Who this week.  This is a review for the episode that aired last week.  Because last week was one of those weeks.  This week has also been one of those weeks.  All weeks are now one of those weeks.  That is why I am feeling so weak.  It will all get sorted out eventually.  The Doctor Who episodes, I mean.  The other stuff is going to linger a while, it would appear.

While biding time--as much as a Time Lord must--to retrieve Clara for another adventure--the Doctor investigates her past.  He discovers the leaf she keeps pressed in a travel book is from a chance encounter in which her parents met and that her mother died when Cara was a teenager.  Returning to the present to collect her, Clara tells the Doctor she wants to see something awesome. 

Seeing something awesome is pretty much all we et with “The Rings of Akhaten.”  It is a visually stunning episode as far as alien make up and special effects go, but very light on story.  Our heroes wind up at an alien bazaar that appears just as weird as Mos Eisley, then wind up saving a little girl from both a mummy and an emotion devouring planet.   

All that stuff is stunning to see, but lacks substance.  There is really no point in even hain the mummy there.  It is merely a neat special effect banging on its translucent cage while our heroes casually talk.  But really, folks should have learned by now any villain put in a supposedly unbreakable lass cae is goin to get out eventually. 

The ending is a bit corny.  It looks like yet another “I am a Time Lord” speech is going to do the planet in, but it is Clara who steps in and defeats it by allowing it to devour the untold emotional potential of her leaf.  The gesture should mean more to me, but it just does not.  I am not terribly down on ‘The rins of Akhaten.”  Clara ets a real chance to shine as a character and te special effects are a sight to behold.  The script just does add up.

Rating: *** (out of 5)

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