“Do not blaspheme! Do not blaspheme!”
To mark Series 10 of Doctor Who starting on BBC1 next week, I’ve been counting down the weeks with a rewatch of all 9 of the previous series of new Who. And now we’re within touching distance, I’m counting down the days talking about each one. For once though, I’m going to keep these posts (relatively) short and sweet, following the below format.
With just the one series to judge him on, and that series being the very first when everyone was still finding their feet, Christopher Eccleston’s Nine often gets a bit of a raw deal. And some of his zany moments are undoubtedly really quite awkward to watch but for me, they’re easily outweighed by the emotional weight of his more serious work, especially when hinting at the considerable darkness of the events of his recent past that had left him so haunted. A solid re-entry back into the televisual world.
Episodes, in order of preference
The Parting of the Ways
The Empty Child
The Doctor Dances
The End of the World
The Unquiet Dead
The Long Game
Aliens of London
World War Three
Top 5 guest spots
Zoë Wanamaker’s hugely entertaining Lady Cassandra O’Brien.Δ17
Penelope Wilton’s Harriet Jones, deepened endlessly by the knowledge of what’s to come
As Pete Tyler, Shaun Dingwall really rather moved me in Father’s Day
Annette Badland as Blon Fel-Fotch Passameer-Day Slitheen / Margaret Blaine is lumbered with awfulness in her opening Slitheen 2-parter but it is for her much more subtle work in Boom Town that I rate her here
You might have missed this one but Jenna Russell makes an appearance as the floor manager in Bad Wolf
A tie between Yasmin Bannerman’s Jabe, the first of many to give their life in service of the Doctor’s plans in The End of the World and Jo Joyner’s Lynda, most-definitely-with-a-Y, whose dreams of travel in the TARDIS are really quite brutally snuffed out in The Parting of the Ways.
Most wasted guest actor
Tamsin Greig’s turn as the Nurse in The Long Game is suitably sinister but all too brief.
Most important thing that is never mentioned again
Given the amount of temporal paradoxes that most episodes of Doctor Who seem to usher in even by their very existence (don’t @ me), it is a surprise that the Reapers (from Father’s Day) haven’t been seen again.
Gay agenda rating
A+ – even the Doctor gets in on the sexual adventurousness