As I write this on my friend’s infuriatingly small notebook keyboard, the fourth episode of New New Who has aired about 8 hours ago and I have just watched it and the Confidential. Since everyone and their mothers have most likely had a chance to see at least one episode, I thought now would be a good time to present my opinions on Tweed Doctor (Matt Smith) and Amy Pond (Karen Gillan). Blog contains spoilers.
Four episodes of thirteen and so far I think they have come into their roles admirably. Amy Pond actually works as a companion, with none of the irritating chavvyness of Rose and (so far) none of that whole “we’re not a couple!” that Donna and the previous chap had going for them. She also actually does stuff to prove her worth as a companion, such as being fanservice for the adults and lonely teenagers, asking the right questions and mostly listening to the Raggedy Doctor.
Tweed Doctor himself is also shaping up well so far and I like him. He can be funny, intelligent and seems quite eccentric on occasion, which is what you want in a Doctor (any kind of Doctor, really). The little details are good as well, such as his first words in The Eleventh Hour (“Can I have an apple?”). That line made me laugh, as it’s so Doctorish yet I really wasn’t expecting it. Another great moment is when he convinces three Daleks that he’s holding a TARDIS self destruct ring…which is actually a Jammie Dodger.
I won’t say he’s better than David Tennant was in the role, but that’s because Tennant very much made it his own role, surpassing Eccleston and leaving Smith as the new guy who nobody was expecting to like. So naturally it’ll be interesting to see whether fans are considering him better or worse by the end of this series (I’m guessing worse but not by much).
The enemies the new Doctor has faced in the four episodes that he’s had are The Daleks (which Moffat appears to have redesigned with the Power Rangers in mind, pretty though they are), Prisoner Zero and the Atraxi, The Beast Beneath The Big StarShip Britain Thingy and last but not least, this week’s two parter sees the return of the Weeping Angels. The species of Weeping Angels is one of Moffat’s scarier creations so it’s good to see them make a return for a two parter. I eagerly await the resolution episode.
Now, it can’t just be me who’s noticed the sexual or romantic chemistry between not just the characters, but the actors as well? I don’t expect this to end in the last episode with her madly clawing at his tweed as they have a passionate fumble on the TARDIS floor (although now I’ve said it someone will inevitably have written a fanfic about it), but what I’ve seen of their behaviour behind the scenes, as well as the slow-motion, Twilight-like bit in the first episode makes me think that he’s giving her a bit of the old ‘taking her through time and space’ on the side. A bit in Confidential is (deliberately?) fuelling this suspicion with the following exchange, which contains spoilers:
Gillan: “The Doctor bites my arm, and I’m not really sure how we’re going to do that; is he actually going to do it?”
Smith: “Absolutely I’m going to bite her arm! Yeah, for sure!”
See what I mean?
My main gripe with this series is mainly to do with the writing of some of the Doctor’s lines. While the writers have worked around the clock to ensure final lines are nothing short of awesome, it also means that you can often predict what he’s going to say in epic moments, which typically amount to “I’m the Doctor, and you do not fuck with me. Here’s why.”
All in all, I’m pretty happy so far and am eagerly looking forward to seeing some more Tweed and Pond life on screen, and I hope you are too.