Doctor Who “Asylum of the Daleks” Review

So last night saw the premier of the new Doctor Who, a lot was promised of this new series, a new companion and the end to the greatest love story in their history of television that is the end of the Pond marriage. This promised a whole new direction for the Doctor Who franchise and I personally hoped that they had finally shaken off the shackles that was the fantastic writing ability of Russell T Davies but sadly that was not be. In the words of a friend of mine this was billed as a box of awesome with the words epic written on the side but it just failed to deliver on the most important aspect of any Doctor Who episode and that was story, now us Whovians have always forgiven many of the limitations of Doctor Who, because at the end of the day the story has always had us on the edge of our seat gasping, crying, and at certain times, jumping for joy. I don’t know if this is true for every one but it’s always been that way for me but the story in “Asylum of the Daleks was just a copy and paste job from episodes that came before.

The initial idea seems like a good one, the Doctor is trapped on a planet full of Daleks that have gone insane and become uncontrollable, that even the Daleks who still had their minds feared their existence. The first problem is that there aren’t actually that many Daleks featured in the episode. When the Doctor is trapped in the Dalek Parliament, he is surrounded by thousands of Daleks, thanks to the work of the SFX department, but when the Doctor is on this world, in confined spaces, he encounters very few Daleks which present him with a legitimate threat. They make the bold claim that there were millions of them on this planet but am I right in thinking that I only really saw four on the screen at any given moment? This was the first moment for me in this episode were I sat up and when this is very similar to the library, trapped on a planet with no form of escape surrounded by enemies and the companion is in danger. It’s also similar to the previous stories that have involved the Daleks, the idea that the Daleks will remain dormant for a long time until something comes along that they can kill has been done to death and I just want to see something new from them, saying that though, the Parliament idea did intrigue me, and I look forward to seeing if they make anything of that

The Asylum was not the only thing that was going on, there was also the shocking revelation that Rory and Amy are no more, unlike everyone else I was not surprised by this, because as long as I’m not with Amy, she will never be happy, because only I could possibly please her sexually, but alas, I digressed and entered the world of frivolous fantasy. So the story goes that they have split and and are actually getting divorced and apparently sitting down and talking through their relationship problems is far less successful than being whisked off into imminent danger by the Doctor but I suppose this is fantasy so I’ll let it go. I don’t think I’d be spoiling anything for anyone when I say that they are more than OK and I think they’re going to live happily ever after, but I can’t help but think about their baby that was born last season. I know that she grew up to be River but I would have thought that there is a still a baby out there that the Doctor could theoretically save, but nobody seems interested in the baby that is being turned into a weapon against the Doctor. The failure of their marriage is not the only factor that is threatening Rory and Amy, there is also the rather inconvenient fact that Amy is being turned into a Dalek by a nano virus and this is the second part of this story that I’ve seen before. Am I the only one who remembers last season when Amy was replaced by an exact replica of herself? Well that is what this part of the story felt like.

It was only similar to the Amy clone saga because this new Dalek infiltrating humans body means that the Daleks could be anyone at any time and the Doctor would be none the wiser, come on now, the Others things would have properly gone over my head, but this one is basically the Silence with a Dalek twist. Was Moffat just copying and pasting ideas? Or was he just too busy working on the amazing Sherlock to give doctor who his full time.

This story promised to be a very big extravaganza to bring Doctor Who back with a bang but when you come down to it this was a very small episode that was done on the cheap, although the opening actions scene promised so much big expansive ship but then afterwards I couldn’t help but notice that much of the episode was spent in very small identical corridors, even the pretty girl in red spent most of the day trapped in a very small room filmed by one camera, I’m sure this has nothing to do with the very expensive looking computer graphics. That last point pretty much sums up exactly how I felt about this episode. It was very pretty, the CGI were above reproach and the girl in red, played by Jenna-Louise Coleman, who is set to play the Doctor’s new companion, has just become my new crush, but the story was sadly lacking and left me with a rather bitter taste in my mouth. This was not the Doctor Who that we have come to expect; where was the fun? The panache? The Doctor being the Doctor? This felt more like a Christmas special than the start of a new series and I hope that this was just a temporary blip in the Doctor Who machine.


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