Thursday, September 23, 2010

Favorite Doctor Who episode (season 5)

I'm venturing outside of my circle of competence here. Then again, I've been doing that for all of my blog thus far. I'm no expert on cooking, after all. Nor am I a writer for a travel magazine. Nor am I an expert on history. And when I write anything regarding my thoughts on economics, well, despite the degree in Economics and Mathematics, I would definitely state that I am not an expert there. Well, not in Macroeconomics - I have some working understanding of Microeconomics, such as perfect competition, barriers to entry, and an inclination to look at the world from a more quantitative, economics point of view than a wishy/washy type of view that I seem to see among environmentalists, organic farmers, champions of local produce and urban/suburban passenger rail, and the like. (Am I setting myself up for some flames from my very, very small readership? Well, why not? Force me to defend my opinions!).

Anyway, I now happily go outside my circle of competence by stating that the duo Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone from the fifth season of Doctor Who are the best episodes of that season. However, I'm not outside of my circle of competence when I state that they're my favorite episodes in Season 5.

All of my favorite episodes of Doctor Who were written by Steven Moffat (Season 3: Blink; Season 4: Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead; Season 5: The Eleventh Hour, The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang, and the above mentioned episodes). Maybe I'm not discerning?

I like these two episodes because they continue a few narrative elements from Doctor Who. They are part of a larger story, not a mere episode. We see the Weeping Angels again, who we first met in Blink (incidentally, not a bad viewing for Friday the 13th based on reactions I observed when doing so).

We also join up with River Song again, who we first met in Season 4 in Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead. I was very intrigued by River's story in those episodes - her past is the Doctor's future - so I loved how we learned some more about River in Season 5 overall and in these two episodes. As long as Steven Moffat is showrunner for Doctor Who, I'm guessing that we're going to have River Song around to tease and worry the Doctor. The beginning sequence of The Time of Angels was brilliant, with River sending a message to the Doctor from the past overlaid with the Doctor and Amy receiving the message in a museum. And the Doctor's reaction when River piloted the TARDIS better than he during the chase of the Byzantium was hilarious (when the Doctor asked about the noise the TARDIS ordinarily makes when landing but did not when River landed, she said 'It's not supposed to make that noise. You leave the brakes on.').

Also, there are the quotes from The Time of Angels:

"Two things always guaranteed to turn up in a museum: the home box of a category four starliner and, sooner or later, him." - River Song

"What if we had ideas that could think for themselves? What if one day our dreams no longer needed us? When these things occur and are held to be true, the time will be upon us. The time of angels." - River Song reading from the book about the Weeping Angels

And finally, the cliffhanger (spoilers, yes, but fun nevertheless):

Anyway, that's my opinion. You may be a fan of the old Doctor Who series rather than the new, or may not even have heard of the series. But given the quality of what Steven Moffat has written, besides some Doctor Who episodes (the new Sherlock series on the BBC, Coupling,  and Jekyll, for instance), I think that watching these episodes of Doctor Who would be quite rewarding

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