I have noticed myself having frequent conversations which involve the sentence, “Oh, you have to watch Doctor Who!” So I thought I’d do a blog post on that subject. I already did one review of the first couple of seasons of the current incarnation. For something a bit different, rather than giving you the sweeping commentary, I decided to zero in on some absolute favorite episodes–giving due attention to each Doctor and companion.
“The Empty Child” and “The Doctor Dances” – This two-parter is my favorite Christopher Eccleston (Ninth Doctor) episode, possibly my absolute favorite of the series. Rose and the Doctor arrive in 1940s London during the Blitz, looking for a crashed alien spacecraft. They find a strange little boy in a gas mask stalking London’s street children, plaintively asking for his mummy. It sounds odd–it is SO creepy. This episode also introduces the delightful Captain Jack Harkness. The first time I saw this, I was absolutely riveted. It’s scary and suspenseful, woven through with wonderful bits of humor, and the last ten minutes are so feel-good that they make me incredibly happy–even when I re-watched it on a nine-hour plane flight.
“The Girl in the Fireplace” – I think this is my favorite Rose and David Tennant (Tenth Doctor) episode. They’re my favorite pairing so it’s hard to choose–but this one has the Doctor crashing through a mirror on the back of horse. That was the moment I decided David Tennant was an awesome Doctor. With regards to this pairing, due honorable mention given as well to the episode when Rose leaves. So unbelievably heart-breaking.
“The Shakespeare Code” – Unquestionably my favorite Martha episode. I mean–they visit Shakespeare! At the Globe! And there are witches, and a mystery involving Love’s Labor’s Won! Probably my favorite destination the TARDIS ever went to. It’s where I’d want to go (after Cavendish, Prince Edward Island, circa 1907. Then Shakespeare’s Globe).
“Turn Left,” “The Stolen Earth” and “Journey’s End” – Lots to love about the Donna and David Tennant episodes, but this multi-part set is fairly mind-blowing. I don’t feel like I really appreciated Donna until “Turn Left,” and then the last two episodes…there are Daleks, and everyone unites to fight them. We get to have so many amazing characters in an incredibly epic confrontation. Love it.
Honorable mention also to David Tennant’s last episode. I really think the writers did everything they could to NOT help me deal with him leaving. I’m still not over it. But on we go to Matt Smith…
“Vincent and the Doctor” – I have more mixed feelings about the seasons with the Eleventh Doctor, Matt Smith (something for another post), but I do madly love this episode. The Doctor and Amy visit Vincent Van Gogh. I’m pretty familiar with his paintings, and it is SO MUCH FUN to see iconic paintings scattered all over Van Gogh’s living room (he apologizes for the mess). There are little bits and pieces referencing his paintings all over the episode. It’s also a beautiful, moving story about the pains and the joys of life.
If anything–anything at all–in here is catching your attention…you have to watch Doctor Who! And if you already have, I’d love to hear about your favorite episodes.