Continuing from part 1 – you cannot have a hero without a villain for them to fight. Well, if you enjoyed our round-up of the first group of baddies, you’re going to love this next bunch as they are the ones that are the most iconic!

THE SILENCE

Rather than a specific race, The Silence are a religious order. Their agents on Earth have been there since before the dawn of mankind, directing human evolution. Through the use post-hypnotic suggestion, The Silence makes people who see them instantly forget their existence. After an incursion with The Eleventh Doctor, Amy, Rory and River Song, the Silence became known to mankind, temporarily halting their plan.

They used their agent Madame Kovarian to kidnap a young Melody Pond and raised her as the Doctor’s perfect assassin – otherwise known as River Song. In a time-shifting and parallel universe-creating ruse, the Time Lord managed to sabotage the plan.

Upon receiving an impossible message, the Eleventh Doctor made his last journey to Trenzalore where he found his old friend Tasha Lem was working alongside the Silence.

Here he discovered they blew up his TARDIS and created the very cracks in the universe which had followed him around (and from which the Time Lords would come calling). Despite trying to kill the Doctor, the Silence ended up as part of a Destiny Trap – “You can’t change history if you’re part of it,” claimed the Doctor. The Silence helped ensure the Daleks didn’t win the Siege of Trenzalore, thus fulfilling their prophecy.

WEEPING ANGELS

Known as “The Lonely Assassins”, the Weeping Angels are quantum-locked alien killers, as old as the universe itself.

Little is known of their origins or culture. When observed, they freeze like stone, but in the blink of an eye, they can move vast distances. The touch of an Angel hurls their victim back in time – allowing the Angel to feast on the energy of their unlived days.

Initially, the Tenth Doctor encountered four Angels, who sent him back to 1969. He left clues for Sally Sparrow to find and help trap them – releasing him and the TARDIS. Later encounters have seen a whole mausoleum of statues, tiny cherubs and even the Statue of Liberty transformed into Weeping Angels. Both Amy and Rory were trapped by a Weeping Angel when it sent them back to 1938 to live out their lives together. In the 51st Century, the Doctor trapped the Angels in a crack in time, erasing them from history.

 

ICE WARRIORS

Described by the Tenth Doctor as “a fine and noble race who built an empire out of snow”, the Ice Warriors were a species of reptiles from the planet Mars. They were twice encountered by the Second Doctor – first, when their crashed ship was thawed out of a glacier during a future Earth ice age, and then when they tried to take over the Earth’s trans-mat system. On both occasions, the Warriors were dangerous aggressors. In a subsequent meeting with the Third Doctor on Peladon, the Ice Warriors had renounced violence and entered the Galactic Federation.

Many years later, the Eleventh Doctor and Clara met sole Ice Warrior Skaldak aboard a Russian submarine, the Firebird, on Earth in the Eighties whilst the rest of his race were scattered across the universe (including one hidden in a Trap Street in London). The Twelfth Doctor and Bill met Ice Queen Iraxxa on Mars in 1881 which led to contact with Alpha Centauri and the dawning of the Martian Golden Age.

CYBERMEN

Originally born on Earth’s twin planet Mondas, the Cybermen were created as the Mondasians replaced parts of their dead bodies with plastic and steel. Eventually, they added emotional inhibitors, suppressing all feelings – love, hate, even fear. Cybermen can convert humans wherever they go, and take orders from a Cyberleader, whose data can be downloaded to a drone if the leader is destroyed.

Like the Daleks, the Cybermen have dogged the Doctor through space and time. He has prevented them destroying Earth’s weather system, getting their hands on the Nemesis statue and taking over Victorian London with their Cyber-King.

The Tenth Doctor visited a parallel universe, where Cybus Industries had developed Cybermen to prolong John Lumic’s dwindling life. Shortly after, these Cybusmen came crashing through to our own universe – and battled with the Daleks!

Invasion is always on the Cybermen’s minds. Whilst traveling with Clara, the Gallifreyan discovered an army of the silver soldiers at the “biggest and best amusement park there will ever be”, Hedgewick’s World.

At the end of his time, a wooden Cyberman (along with Sontarans, Weeping Angels, and Daleks) came to defeat the Eleventh Doctor at Trenzalore. It wasn’t long before the Twelfth Doctor was up against his old foes. This time the Cybermen were recruited by Missy, formerly known as The Master, as she turned the dead into a new Cyber army on Earth.

THE MASTER

A childhood friend of the Doctor, the Master was driven insane after looking into the Untempered Schism on Gallifrey at the age of eight. Like the Doctor, he fled from the Time Lord’s home planet in a stolen TARDIS. However the Master’s motives have never been pure – frequently seeking alliances with aliens like the Daleks, the Nestene Consciousness and the Rani in an effort to conquer the galaxy.

Running out of natural regenerations, he began assimilating other bodies, before eventually dying. Resurrected by the Time Lords as the perfect warrior, he fought in the Time War before hiding – first as Professor Yana then as Harry Saxon. Shot by his wife but being once more reborn, he was last seen forcing Rassilon and the Time Lords back into the hell of Time War-ravaged Gallifrey.

A gender-changing regeneration took place (where and when we do not know…, yet), and then Missy then sought out her old friend, the Doctor. She meddled in his doings for some time before revealing herself to him in London’s St Paul’s Cathedral flanked with her own Cyberman army. Typical of the renegade Time Lord, Missy had set a trap for her foe but he was not to be beaten. Not only that, the naughty Gallifreyan also lied to the Doctor about the location of their home planet.

A swift escape ensued and Missy attracted the attention of UNIT, who sent Clara Oswald as their negotiator. But peace was not on the Time Lady’s mind. She had brought the Doctor’s Confession Dial and used Clara to track down the Doctor. Her plan worked, though Missy would end up at the end of a Dalek sucker and Davros to deal with.

After some time, Missy was sentenced to execution and the Gallifreyan’s regenerative ability was to be disabled. Due to her Fatality Index, the sentence had to be carried out by another Time Lord – in this case, the Twelfth Doctor. Thankfully, for Missy, her old friend didn’t feel like killing her but did, instead, agree to keep her in a Quantum Fold chamber for 1,000 years – she was placed in The Vault in St. Luke’s University, Bristol.

But the Doctor couldn’t go on without trying to improve his old friend and took Missy out of The Vault and into space and time. Unfortunately, this resulted in the Doctor’s former ‘crush’ (his words) coming face-to-face with an earlier incarnation of The Master, last seen alongside the Tenth Doctor.

Ever the prankster, Missy fatally wounded The Master and vice versa…

DAVROS

Davros was Chief Scientist of the Kaleds towards the end of their thousand year war with the Thals on the planet Skaro. Confined to a mobile life-support system, Davros developed a final solution to end the war: The Daleks – mutated Kaleds robbed or morality and with added aggression, placed inside armored shells called the Mark III Travel Machines. However, his own people rejected the notion, and in retaliation, he gave the Thals the formula to destroy the Kaled dome. Safe in the bunker below, Davros released the Daleks on an unsuspecting world. However, the Daleks turned upon their creator and left him for dead in the bowels of the city on Skaro.

Years later, the Daleks sought his help to defeat their logical stalemate with the Movellans and then again to defeat the Movellan virus. Later he became The Great Healer, turning the bodies of the dead into food, or new “Imperial” Daleks. His grip on the Daleks weakened, as a renegade faction grew up – loyal to the Supreme Dalek – plunging them into civil war.

He commanded Dalek forces during The Last Great Time War and was seen flying into the jaws of the Nightmare Child. Rescued by Dalek Caan, Davros constructed the Reality Bomb but was foiled by the Children of Time.

Escaping the burning wreckage of the Crucible, Davros traveled to Skaro where he used his servant Colony Sarff to lure the Twelfth Doctor to his lair. Predictably, as ever, his scheming was undone though the scientist was last seen in the company of Missy. What treachery could they be planning…?

DALEKS

Daleks are merciless and pitiless cyborg aliens, demanding total conformity, bent on conquest of the universe and the extermination of what they see as inferior races. Their catchphrase, “Exterminate!”, is a well-recognized reference in throughout space and time.

Within the programme’s narrative, the Daleks were engineered by the scientist Davros during the final years of a thousand-year war between his people, the Kaleds, and their enemies the Thals. With some Kaleds already badly mutated and damaged by nuclear war, Davros genetically modified the Kaleds and integrated them with a tank-like, robotic shell, removing their every emotion apart from hate. His creations soon came to view themselves as the supreme race in the universe, intent on purging the universe of all non-Dalek life. Collectively they are the greatest enemies of Doctor Who.

The Doctor first encountered the Daleks on the radiation-soaked planet of Skaro, waging war with the peaceful Thals. The Daleks were the mangled and mutated remains of the Kaled people, placed in metal war machines by the Kaled’s chief scientist Davros.

Pursuing the Doctor across space and time, the Daleks invaded the Earth, developed the Reality Bomb and tried to imprison the Doctor in the Pandorica. They fought the Time Lords in The Last Great Time War – a conflict so powerful and destructive that the universe was said to convulse.

Of course, just like the Time Lords, the Daleks escaped too and the naughty little tanks teamed-up with their creator Davros in a bid to use the Doctor’s regenerative powers to enhance their race.

Lets start with the positive on this episode as it must be said, there were some misses, but still quite a bit to like and while this episode was not as good as The Magician’s Apprentice, it still moved forward in a fairly quick and interesting fashion.

While we all knew that Missy and Clara were not killed at the end of the previous episode, their means of escape from the Dalek’s was explained quite well and their interactions throughout the show were spot on. I especially liked the “view” that Clara had of the Doctor’s escape in a similar fashion and her explanation of his gift for similar escapes from other enemies in the past. Missy specifically while seeming “almost good” last episode, continued that trend here, but gradually and convincingly started to revert to type in a more and more demented fashion and started to remind me of the Joker in some weird and wonderful ways!

Similarly the Doctor and Davros’ conversations and interactions were exceedingly well done and you could absolutely get into it. While anyone would assume that Davros was bluffing and playing on the Doctor’s feelings, more and more throughout the episode, he managed to persuade you of the genuinness of his feelings and his eventual betrayal when it came, as well as how it came was a surprise.

Quick Recap

If you recall from last weeks episode, Clara and Missy were supposedly killed by the Daleks. Well this week starts with them explaining how they escaped (basically Missy had reprogrammed their teleportation devices to send them elsewhere when they were shot by the Daleks) and then discussing how they can break back into the city that is filled with murderous Daleks so that they can save the Doctor.

Entering the sewers of the city – Clara rightly asks, why do Daleks even have sewers? Missy informs her that the sewers are not for removing waste from the Daleks but as they are essentially immortal, when their shell decays the remnants of the Dalek pool in the sewers of the city. While they no longer have the ability to navigate and drive a Dalek shell/body – they still continue to hate as a Dalek and Missy uses this knowledge to trap and kill a Dalek that has come into the sewers searching for the intruder.

“genetically hardwired to keep on living, whatever happens”.

Placing Clara in the Dalek shell – with eerie similarities to Clara’s first appearance on the Doctor in epic Asylum of the Daleks – Clara is “taught” by Missy how to navigate and use the Dalek body. Scarily emotions and words like love and hate and exterminate are the tools that power the Daleks disintegration beams and Clara is quickly frightened by what she’s gotten herself into.

‘How are you supposed to make it go without pedals?’ Clara asked.
‘Telepathic control.’
But inside when she spoke, to her horror she found everything was automatically translated into Dalek-speak.
‘I am Clara Oswald’ came out as ‘I am a Dalek.’

Meanwhile the Doctor and Davros continue their repartee and in a short interlude it seems that the Doctor might have found a quick and easy way to escape when he removes Davros from his chair and uses it to taunt the Daleks in their control chamber.

‘Davros is an insane, paranoid, genius who has survived among several billion trigger-happy mini tanks for centuries,’ he told the army of Davros’ ‘children’. ‘Conclusion? I’m definitely having his chair!’

While this interlude is short, the interaction between the two in the latter half of the episode is both poignant and moving, and Davros particularly does an exceptional job in his portrayal of a dying madman that has seen the truth. When he opens his eyes – well I’ll be honest, thats a scene I NEVER expected to see!

Davros even wept as he asked: ‘I need to know before I go. Am I a good man?’

However, as we’ve come to expect from both the Doctor and his most bitter enemy, leopards just don’t change their spots and while the Doctor is seemingly trapped in his efforts to restore Davros to life so that he can see one more sunrise, in reality the Doctor has realized that its all a setup and trick. Bequething his Time Lord energy to Daleks, the Doctor has realized that its not going just to Davros and those Daleks still in their bodies, but to ALL Daleks on the planet including the bodies of millions and millions of quiescent Daleks that were previously only in the sewers.

generations of Daleks just woke up very cross and they are coming up the pipes ! This city is about to be sucked into the ground, your own sewer is about to consume you !’

Realizing that Clara is trapped in the Dalek shell when she utters the word “mercy”, the Doctor helps her get out. Missy meanwhile is forced to flee as while she’d saved the Doctor from Davros, she’d commited a more heinous crime when she attempted to trick him into killing Clara by pretending that the Dalek body she was inhabiting had actually been the one that killed her.

While we were left last week with the Doctor facing a young Davros seemingly about to destroy him, this week we see the conclusion to that and the Doctor instead exterminates the handmines and saves Davros’ life. The boy wanted to know if was a friend or an enemy though.

‘I’m not sure any of that matters – friends, enemies..’ the Doctor assured him. ‘So long as there’s mercy.’

No!!! Not the Sonic Screwdriver!!

Overall a bit of a mixed feelings here. I mean the first and most obvious thing that must be said here, is that millions of toys around the world have now been consigned to the dustbin of history and I’m sure whole factories full of toy makers are cursing the BBC and Moffat for what he’s done in this most recent episode. If you recall from last week’s episode (The Magician’s Apprentice), the Doctor had given his Sonic Screwdriver to a young Davros, well now its gone (perhaps for good?) and has been replaced by “wearable technology” – sonic (?) sunglasses! I’ll be honest, that’s one thing I really didn’t like – if they wanted to introduce a new line of toys or gadgets, wouldn’t a smartwatch have made more sense? Sunglasses while admittadly cool, just aren’t the right tool in certain situations and just don’t make sense. Of course, in terms of a (secret) grand reveal it’s quite appropriate, as I’m sure everyone was rightfully surprised when it happened! As Capaldi has been featured wearing these shades in episodes being filmed for the remainder of Season 9, it can be assumed that they are here to stay – at least for this season & while the Sonic “Screwdriver” was most definitely not a screwdriver, its a gadget that I will personally miss.

Finally this episode has done nothing more than reenergize the Daleks as while it might seem they are setback by the muck from the sewers, we all know they will be back and if the Doctor knew that Davros was pretending, he’s done nothing more than give him additional life which seems a bit wrong to me? In addition, the same can be said of Missy couldn’t it? She’s an excellent character and I really love the spin she’s brought to the show, but previous iterations of Who had done what they could to stop her … here, he’s just told her to go away. Seems like a bit of a cop out.

Overall I didn’t love this one as much as I did the previous episode. There was some good stuff for sure, but the negatives in my opinion did more to hurt it.

Loved it, loved it, loved it!  Many girlish squeals of joy also! 🙂  Now that we’ve got that out of the way, lets get down to it shall we?  There was just so much to enjoy and love in this episode I know that I’m going to miss something however I’ll try to cover the high points and would appreciate any reminders for things I might have missed in the comments below.

The first thing that struck me right from the start is that this episode is definitely being shown in a “Star Wars year” as one of the earliest scenes is of an alien wandering through a bar that reminds me of nothing else but the Mos Eisley Cantina on Tatooine.  Literally snaking through the crowd (this reference will be made clear later) we see the Oood and other familiar characters from Dr. Who lore, however most important perhaps is the search that this mysterious hooded figure is on.

Colony Sarff (looking very much like a Sith Master – another reference to Star Wars) is on the hunt for the Doctor and when he’s unable to find him in all of his regular jaunts, he returns to his master … Davros.  Davros it seems has remembered something, something important and something about the Doctor.  What you may ask?  Well that was actually answered in one of the coolest prologues I’ve ever seen!

In the prologue, the Doctor comes across a little boy on a war torn land.  Similar to other rescues that we’ve seen him make countless times before, this looks like just another run of the mill encounter.  The boy however is stuck in a field with “hand mines” that are one of the more interesting and gruesome weapons provided by Doctor Who.  Able to literally suck a person into the ground to their doom, they are able to see people to attack and while the Doctor is good at saving people, you really need to wonder how he’s going to make this miracle happen?

The answer in this case however, is that he isn’t! The boy it turns out is someone we all know and hate – Davros the creator of the Daleks himself is the one trapped in the field of hands and the Doctor surmises that by leaving him to die, he can possibly change the path of the future and save trillions from extermination.

Silly Doctor … this time he forgot that Davros himself must be a fixed point in time … the creator of the Daleks cannot be killed by non-action.  The Doctor really only has two choices here … either kill Davros or save him.  Unfortunately neither option guarantees that the Dalek’s still won’t be built.

However, Davros himself is not the only villain in this episode … perhaps the one that we all loved and hated the most … the Master in his female incarnation Missy is back! If you recall from the episode Death in Heaven (the Season 8 finale) – Missy was seemingly disintegrated by one of the Cybermen – somehow the Doctor’s finest foe resurrected herself (“Ok,” she deadpans. “Cutting to the chase. Not dead. Back. Big surprise. Never mind.”), and now she really wants to be considered more of friend. At least a frenemy.

The Master/Missy has always been a character right on the edge of sanity – while the Dalek’s are simply evil incarnate, the Master has always been someone that could have been on the side of light if things had just gone just a little bit differently.  With the return of Missy in The Magician’s Apprentice, we see a capricious foe, one that while still an enemy of the Doctor is also perhaps his oldest and truest friend and from what we’ve seen over the previous seasons – this is actually somewhat true!  I’d be the first to acknowledge that the Master was always one of the Doctor’s greatest foes, however was he not in some ways made this way due to the meddling of the Time Lords?

 

When she (Missy) stops all the planes in the world to get Clara’s attention & likens her to a dog that is being walked by a nearby couple, it’s supremely classic and in some ways give you the best indication of how the Time Lords (perhaps including the Doctor himself) see us.  Pets to be cared for and nurtured, but ones that they are infinitely superior to – not only in knowledge, but also in ability and determination.  With Clara’s help, Missy is able to track the Doctor down who has been hiding in the renaissance era, this is probably the weakest part of the episode as while it’s fun to watch, its nothing more than a rip-off of Back to the Future & while some of the aforementioned scenes also rip-off other movies/shows, they are done in a way that is subtle, whereas this is definitely not!

Missy however is nothing more than brilliant in this scene and it’s probably one of her strongest ones on screen.  While she was excellent in her conversation with Clara, her she is sublime.  She plays the perfect foil to the Doctor and his over the top ego & acts as the villain to his hero in his ramblings to the crowd.  She’s just amazing and I can’t wait to see what else she brings to the screen this season!

Sarff arrives while Missy and the Doctor are interacting and while Missy is trying to get the Doctor to answer the question of why he sent her his will and why he thinks he’s dying, Sarff tells him that Davros has remembered & the Doctor immediately goes white.  As both Clara and Missy point out, its a new look for him – one of shame.

Taken to a citadel seemingly hovering in space, the Doctor meets up with Davros and while the scenes and conversations of all of Davros’ previous encounters with various incarnations of the Doctor play on the screen – including the brilliant Genesis of the Daleks with Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor – Peter Capaldi seems up to the challenge of replacing this memory in all of our minds.  When Clara and Missy discover the the citadel is not actually hovering in space, but is in fact on the surface of Skaros – the home planet of the Daleks themselves, well that’s where the plot really thickens!

While Missy tries to persuade the Daleks that she should be their new leader & help them take over all of space and time with the aid of the TARDIS, they are less than interested and proceed to EXTERMINATE her, followed by Clara and the TARDIS while the Doctor looks on in horror.  While you might think that was a suitable cliff hanger to leave us on till next week, its not over yet – the Doctor appears back on that war torn battlefield with the little boy … this time however it seems he’s made a decision and its not to save the boy but rather to kill him & perhaps end the reign of the Daleks before they even begin!

Ohhh, boy … this was definitely a good one and if the rest of the season matches this episode in terms of story and production values, we’re in for a very exciting journey.  This episode has the potential already to be one of my favorite ones, possibly second to the Doctors Wife.  Can’t wait till next week!

While getting coffee for Clara, The Doctor uses the TARDIS to rescue Journey Blue, a soldier fighting the Daleks, from her exploding spaceship. Returning her to command ship Aristotle, he avoids being executed as a Dalek spy by agreeing to treat a Dalek that has malfunctioned and ‘turned good’. The Doctor retrieves Clara from Coal Hill School, where she has just set a date with maths teacher and former soldier Danny Pink, and they set off in the TARDIS for the Aristotle. On the way, The Doctor asks Clara if he is ‘a good man’ but she does not know.

The Doctor, Clara, Journey and soldiers Ross and Gretchen are miniaturised to go inside the Dalek whom The Doctor has nicknamed ‘Rusty’. They are attacked by Dalek antibodies and Ross is killed. The Doctor seals the radiation leak causing the Dalek’s damage, which provokes Rusty to lead an attack on the Aristotle. Gretchen sacrifices herself so The Doctor and Clara can recover the memories that made Rusty ‘good’. Linked in to The Doctor’s mind, Rusty destroys all his fellow Daleks. The Doctor refuses Journey as a companion because she is a soldier. Clara tells Danny she is not so prejudiced.

The script for ‘Into the Dalek’ is much tighter and more coherent than ‘Deep Breath’ though there is far too much time wasted on talking about The Twelfth Doctor’s moral ambiguity. The sparse storyline and reduced number of characters helps enormously, and even the extraneous cut-away to Missy in the ‘Promised Land’ season arc is kept to an absolute minimum. The miniaturisation idea, liberally borrowed from the movie Fantastic Voyage and previously used in the Tom Baker serial ‘The Invisible Enemy’, works well although the unique jeopardy of the situation is occasionally forgotten about and it becomes just another labyrinth.

As with other Dalek episodes in the Moffat era, the use of The Doctor’s most iconic adversaries is fairly incidental. There’s no longer any continuity between the Dalek stories and often it feels like they are metal MacGuffins moving the plot along on castors. Though The Doctor talks about his first run-in with The Daleks, there’s a very fractured sense of the Dalek mythology. They seem more like abstract philosophical concepts of good and evil than fully-realised antagonists. The captured and conflicted Dalek storyline is perhaps a little too close to 2005’s Dalek and was arguably done far better then.

The Radio Times for 30 April–6 May 2005 covere...
The Radio Times for 30 April–6 May 2005 covered both the return of the Daleks to Doctor Who and the forthcoming general election. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

‘Deep Breath’ was a bridge between the Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi eras but ‘Into the Dalek’ gives us a much better idea of how the series will progress. We see that The Doctor will be dropping by Coal Hill School to whisk Clara away to the universe rather than her being a permanent resident of the TARDIS. With the introduction of Danny Pink, we get a link with contemporary earth and possibly a new companion. It looks like we’re only going to get glimpses of Missy and ‘The Promised Land’ in each episode, until at least the season finale.

This is also the first time we’ve seen The Twelfth Doctor outside of his post-regeneration haze, and he shapes up to be a deeply pessimistic and cynical incarnation of the character. The Doctor seems terribly fatalistic about the inevitability of Ross’s death and the impossibility of a ‘good’ Dalek, also notably less certain of his own moral authority. Consequently, Clara has to become more confrontational with The Doctor, which hits the viewer hard when she roughly slaps him across the face in a moment of callous disinterest. She also starts to function as the antidote to The Doctor’s increasingly judgmental attitudes.

The second story featuring a new Doctor is usually where we see what we’re going to get from the character but Peter Capaldi came in so strongly with his abrasive and strange portrayal that there’s not much work left to do, and The Doctor’s sinister side seems to have peaked in this episode. Rather ‘Into the Dalek’ is a chance to get back to more rugged storytelling and pure action after a ponderous and arty season opener. I’m not angling for a return of the Russell T Davies-era where Daleks were overused and all-consuming, but I do think that the stories they feature in could be more quintessential to the Daleks and their history in the series, rather than having them as a piece of metal to hang a premise on. Overall, ‘Into the Dalek’ is very satisfying sci-fi but doesn’t do much for The Doctor or The Daleks.

Matt Smith is really starting to shine now … the newest installation of Doctor Who sees The Doctor and Amy in the far future of the human race where they have settled many planets and stars.

River Song (someone from The Doctors future but also someone he has encountered in the past – time travel is confusing sometimes!) makes another appearance in this story and is obviously a key/pivotal character throughout.  In addition, the Weeping Angels are back – probably one of the scarier new villains from the David Tennant era – they are just as horrific now!

Brief Recap

  • River Song appears to us on a spaceship doing something to a box (we later discover that it is writing in Gallifrean and is the words “Hello Sweety” which The Doctor discovers when he is “touring” the museums for his influences – no details are provided on how she knows Gallifrean!)
  • The Doctor realizes that the message is for him, steals the cube and views the video record that it contains. When he does so, he hears the coordinates that he needs to have to travel in time to pick up River Song (how does she know these numbers??) and travels to rescue her just in time as she is ejected from the spaceship.
  • River then proceeds to take charge of the Tardis and is obviously very familiar with its use and operation (another question not answered). In addition to this, she is able to conform the Tardis so that it does not even make its distinctive landing sound (by the way – I really hope that this is temporary as this is a change I would not really be happy seeing in the future!)
  • They follow the ship which has crash-landed on a planet and are joined by a group of “religious” marines … The Doctor is informed that they are there to destroy the contents of the ship – a Weeping Angel and together River and The Doctor review a diary written by someone that is all about the Angels (I don’t think they inform us about who wrote the manual either, which is another question!)
  • They review one looping video that they have of the Weeping Angel and while The Doctor and River are reading the diary, Amy notices that the Angel is moving and seems to be active … as The Doctor discovers in his reading, anything “that bears the image of the Angel becomes the Angel” and this one is now coming for Amy.
  • Amy is able to stop the Angel by “freezing” the video in place at the static part thereby disrupting its image. However she looked into the eyes of the Angel which might have an impact on her (we will discover what later).
  • Where the ship has crashed is actually a dead world, covered by statues which will make finding the Angel a difficult matter in itself, however The Doctor and party set out to do just that and split up into several different groups to cover more ground. One such group is immediately ambushed however and the Angel seems to be able to mimic the voices of the people that it has killed.
  • As The Doctor and party progress through the maze, The Doctor gradually comes to the realization that the ship did not come to this planet by mistake, but in fact all the statues that he has seen are in fact also Angels themselves and that the only reason they look the way they do, is that they have been deprived of food for so long which is why they are so slow – however this is gradually changing with the proximity of the humans and they are “waking up”. The whole thing is a trap!
  • The Doctor and the remaining humans are contacted by the Angel who has now assumed the voice & identity of another marine that he has killed. Informing The Doctor that he is soon to follow the episode ends leaving us in suspense for the 2nd part! I hate when that happens – as I’d completely gotten caught up in the episode and was really surprised that the time had passed … oh well, I’ll definitely be back!

Thoughts and Observations

Overall really good.  Matt Smith is definitely settling into his role and the mania of the earlier episodes seems to be passing.  The interactions between The Doctor and River Song are really well done and there are definitely a lot of questions raised by and about her that bear further exploration.

The Weeping Angels seem to be (so far) a really good villain.  Definitely better than some of the other villains/characters introduced in the David Tennant era (although I would like to see the Oood again too) and while this episode isn’t as “scary” as their introduction it is still really good.  Best parallel would perhaps be Alien vs. Aliens.