Doctor Who: The Time of Angels

Posted: April 24, 2010 in Review
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504: The Time of Angels

‘Don’t blink!’ – The Doctor

Wow. Just when you start to despair and bang your head against a wall, Moffat returns in style and pulls one out of the bag.

The Doctor’s future wife, River Song, sends him a cunning message that draws the TARDIS to a crash site on a planet long abandoned. The ship they were chasing contains the last remaining Weeping Angel, a statue that has laid dormant for hundreds of year and is now being supercharged by enormous amounts of radiation…

The plot is fairly simple, like all ‘Part One’ episodes: bucket loads of setup, tension and loss as the Doctor suddenly finds himself miles out of his depth. What makes it so good this time around is simply that the Weeping Angel enemy is so, so brilliant.

Moffat has had the foresight to take what was scary – i.e. not blinking or you die – and up the ante significantly. The Angel now has far more power than any of the others previously encountered. This one can come get you through TVs, switch off lights and, most brilliantly of all, get inside Amy’s head.

The production values are consistently high, the acting top-notch throughout and the ideas flying off the screen. This is Moffat going for the jugular of the children watching and with any luck night lights will remain on across the nation.

There are a few problems, though. The amount of supporting characters means that there aren’t many real characters in the Church Squad. They turn up just moments before you know they’re going to get it in the neck, which is a disappointment. And another point – one that certainly seems to rear its ugly head time and again – what is with the BBC and their casting of ethnic actors? The first two characters that die are… wild guess… black! It’s a surprise that the Angel isn’t black, just to complete the image.

Still, that aside, this is a really thrilling return to form that will keep its viewers glued to their screens for the conclusion next week. Hopefully it won’t go the same way as all the other ‘Part Two’ episodes and be full of exposition.

8/10

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