Day 299: Damned Repeats

It’s back to the Phantom Zone for the latest Sole Of Sci-Fi…

October 26 main

Apologies for re-using old set-ups. The trainers are new (literally) but the Krypton background is has been recycled from earlier in the year. But with the sudden decision to go my parents’s place this week, I’ve had to cut a few corners.

Dad seems okay, though very bored in hospital. We had a two-and-a-half-hour crossword session to cheers him up, but had to end up asking a nurse the answer to one medically-themed question (turns out we had the correct answer, we just weren’t spelling “fibula” correctly).

I actually bought the Pumas in  T-Maxx sale, especially in preparation for last night’s Doctor Who, knowing there was a tiger in it (which, as it turns our, seemed to have been there purely to justify the episode title). Okay, Onitsuka Tigers would have made more sense, but you’ll be lucky to buy them cheaply, and I have a budget to stick to, so any old trainers with a big cat connection were going to have to do.

As it turns out, I don’t think I would have much enthusiasm for  a Who-related blog today. “In The Forest Of The Night” really didn’t do it for me, I’m afraid. I could see – and appreciate – what Frank Cottrell Boyce was trying to do: an ecological allegory dressed as a fairy tale with SF overtones – but there was a lack of threat and an overriding tweeness that left me unmoved. I didn’t mind the kids; aside from a few clunky lines they were actually surprisingly non-irritating. But the whole feel of the episode was too cosy and insular. Never at any moment did the Earth feel threatened.

Neither did I buy into Jenna convincing the Doctor to just get in the TARDIS and leave; I’m sure it felt like a great big moral dilemma with a shocking outcome in script meetings, but somewhere in translation to screen it became terribly muddled and muddy.

The fact that the big resolution moment to the episode was a lightbulb appearing over the Doctor’s head as he mopes in the TARDIS seems particularly undramatic too.

Plus – and I’m sorry if I missed a line here – I spent the whole episode wondering, “Where is everybody else?” Surely that forest would have been teeming with confused Londoners? Not one school outing and a mum on a bike.

There were some lovely images, though, and a couple of great injokes. But I’m going to have to file this one under “disappointing”.

See you tomorrow!

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