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The Doctor Who episode you can introduce to your girlfriend

The Doctor Who episode you can introduce to your girlfriend

One of the oft-discussed questions within Doctor Who fandom is which episode of Doctor Who you should screen for your newly-discovered partner and Doctor Who virgin. In addition to last year’s poignant Father’s Day, I think we can now add The Girl in the Fireplace to a very short list.

Ironically, I wasn’t particularly expecting much from this story. One daft central mystery, the spurious setting of a story in 18th century France – there didn’t seem much room for character development, mystery, romance, horror and tragedy. But oh boy was I wrong…

Spoilers lie beyond here (again!)

Almost every TV drama at some point has the central hero falling, then losing, his/her love, just for the perfect angsty moment where the actor can emote, and the audience can sympathise. What’s surprising is that it’s taken Doctor Who some 43 years to attempt that storyline — and in a way that can almost appeal to every “traditional” nerdy Doctor Who fan. Even the gay reviewers seem to have fallen in love with Sophia Myles – except I wasn’t that impressed with her acting. Must check my pulse.

In the meantime, we’ve had everyone else’s hearts broken by the Doctor (Sarah Jane Smith to name but a few, but don’t get me started on *that* one!) – but never the other way around. And just in time to consolidate people’s general crush on David Tennant. Hell, even my sister and Miss R fancy him. Grrr…

I’ve got my personal theories about how Rose’s frustration with her love for the Doctor is going to evolve to a very interesting climax come episodes 12 and 13 … but then my flatmate was convinced that the evil force behind the Daleks for last year would turn out to be Adam…

The only flaw behind The Girl In The Fireplace – aside from its clumsy moniker and dull TV tagline – is that the central plot strand to enable the characterisation seems so illogical, clumsy and frankly daft (why name a spaceship after an 18th century courtesan? Why build robots out of clockwork? How did the robots get the costumes in the first place?) that it just doesn’t stand up. Same as last week’s episode in fact – plot believability has been somewhat sacrificed for characterisation. Which is probably no bad thing, but I hope they get back to normal next week.

4 Comments

  • Skarlett

    I'm starting to fancy him too 🙂

  • OMG! How bizarre. This episode was the first one that I said to my lovely lady "You really should try watching Doctor Who you know", and so we did indeed both sit and watch it. And what a corker!

    Now of course we'll watch next weeks with the Cybermen, and she won't be half as impressed. Typical!

    Must dig out my DivX copy of "Father day" that I've got lying around burnt on a CD somewhere…

  • My b/f, who hates anything remotely sci-fi, has become an avid Doctor Who fan. It’s weird. Even totally OTT stories like this one have him gripped.

    Looking fwd to the cybermen ;P

  • I thought this episode was the best yet this year. The Cybermen story's first part was a huge let-down: too much filler, for starters, too much pointless backstory. We didn't need Pete brought back… It undermined last year's story in which he shuffled off this mortal coil… x

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