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Doctor Who – 2013 Season: Journey To The Centre Of The TARDIS by Steve Thompson (episode review).

As with the SFCrowsnest Forum in recent years and this time there and here on the, my comments on the latest season of ‘Doctor Who’. These will mostly be impressions – here’s my Doctor one, still ‘Geronimo!’ – rather than intentional plot spoilers. If you’re living in a country that hasn’t seen these episodes yet, read with caution but I’m not going to give too much away. If you can watch it first, that’s even better.

Is it becoming standard practice for the Doctor to coach all his companions in how to pilot the TARDIS? More so odd when you consider that the Doctor is still trying to work out just what Clara is?

Journey To The Centre Of The Tardis
Dr Who… what’s at the centre of the Tardis?

Even reducing the TARDIS’ functions down to the basics for the lesson can’t have been the first time that he’s done this, if you consider the number of other companions who have had similar lessons.

We do see a lot more of the TARDIS, albeit briefly. This includes the swimming pool and the library and briefly Clara becomes one more, River Pond being the other, who knows the Doctor’s real name. Is that a hint that the revelation in the 50th anniversary that we will be told who the Doctor is? I hope that’s not the case because then we’ll be calling him something different to the Doctor and break the myth about the character.

Having a room where anything can be created on the TARDIS, one has to wonder why the TARDIS ever needed a mercury fluid link although, granted, it wasn’t working properly with the earlier regenerations.

It is also odd that when Gregor Van Baalen steals a component, why doesn’t the Doctor simply pull it out of the back of his haversack and put it back and stop the problem?

Considering that the Doctor is supposed to be sympathetic to the TARDIS, it does seem odd that his connection to it is lost with the disruption. I’m also puzzled that the Doctor describes the interior as having infinite space when it shed consider amounts of its mass in the fifth regeneration although who’s to say it didn’t regrow after being repaired.

One thing you would have thought the TARDIS would have is a tannoy system and at least some form of monitor system to look around the place. Then again, considering the temporal displacement, that might explain why that wouldn’t have worked but it is a missing detail.

There are some good points. The main one is walking around and getting back to where you started is cleverly done even if it has shades of ‘The Avengers’ 60s story, ‘The House That Jack Built’.

The Doctor is also being deceitful again than rely on his expertise in everything. This might be seen as a problem with the scriptwriters. If so, wouldn’t it make sense to have a scientific advisor to at least add the necessary dimension to their deficiency.

As to the other members of the cast. Although I applaud the use of a black cast, they are awfully stereotyped as being illegal scavengers using banned devices. They are barely out of the ghetto for Illuminatii’s sake. Surely, we can and be better than this?!

For a bottle show, it will end up being noted as one of the rare stories where there is no villain of the piece. Despite some revelations, there is also the re-set button so little of it is remembered so is essentially treading water, albeit heavy water.

Am I being too critical of this season? Someone’s not paying attention or there’s too much budget conservation and dumbing down. There really needs to have some more meat on the plots than there has been so far.

GF Willmetts

April 2013



Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

One thought on “Doctor Who – 2013 Season: Journey To The Centre Of The TARDIS by Steve Thompson (episode review).

  • The last few episodes have been a real let down, it’d be nice to see a few episodes that are more like blink or the empty child instead of these fairy tale kids stories.


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