JReviews: Doctor Who Series 9 Episode 5: The Girl Who Died

Umm, don't expect too much from me here, because honestly, I have no idea on this one.

So, we'll start out with the usual question, was this episode good? I don't know. You read the plot synopsis, "The Doctor and Clara have 12 hours to train the residents of a small Viking village into warriors after a villager declares war on an alien warrior race called the Mire", and it sound like a complete mess. Fortunately that part wasn't as much of a mess as it should have been because it was handled as believably as it could have been. Actually, who am I kidding, that was not believable in any way, but it was entertaining. The fact that the Vikings conveniently had some electric eels lying about for the Doctor to use as traps and to make magnets out of anvils from was utterly preposterous. Also, have to give mad props to the Doctor for rewiring that Mire helmet to both receive thoughts and then project them into the other Mire helmets, I honestly completely missed that until I just sat down and thought about it. It took all of 2 seconds whilst there was all this other stuff going on to distract the viewer (including a wonderful diversion in the shape of an Old Who quote) and, of course, to keep everyone in the dark as to what the plan was there's no hint as to what he's actually doing outside of aforementioned quote, which is just throw away technobabble. So yeah, that's all a mess. But a fun mess, and quite inventive in how the situation was felt with, although you'd have thought that one of the greatest warrior races in the galaxy (presumably behind the Daleks and the Sontarans) would not have been scared off so easily.

Then the rest of the episode is littered with bits that are really odd. The start is completely random (although major cheers happened when the sonic sunglasses got snapped in two). The aliens looked really fake when not helmeted, especially compared to last weeks villain. The guy drinks testosterone made from minced Viking warrior as well, yuck. But the most confusing bit, no actually the second most confusing bit, was Ashildr herself. See was both really annoying and really anonymous. She was really stupid at the start. I know you've just seen a load of your villagers killed and you're angry, but do you really have to declare war on a people that have just annihilated your best warriors with technology that only the Doctor understands. Bad move girl, and Clara was doing so well. And then for the rest of the episode they try to make her out as something special, but she's just kinda there, not really feeling all that special. Shame, hopefully she's better next episode.

But the real most confusing bit about this episode is that it's a two parter. Why? It's just a reason to have a guest star back again really. This episode would have been fine as a single episode. The next story looks completely different. It's just odd, after we've had two two-part stories to have two stories as a two-parter. It's weird.

But, final few things. 1) They explain Peter Capaldi appearing in Doctor Who twice in the most inconsequential way possible, but in a fine scene. 2) Clara. Clara, Clara, Clara, Clara. You were terrible in the last episode. You have no right to be good in this episode. But you were. You actually were. This was her finest episode I.M.O.

So yeah, you see why I don't know what to make of this episode. It was entertaining but afterwards I was just left with a feeling of "what just happened?" So, yeah, I'll just wait for next week.

And with that...

No wait, actually, one last thing. If that's what babies are actually saying, then I'm so freaking glad I don't speak baby. That was stupid I'm sorry, easily the worst dialogue I've heard on the show.

And with that.

JR out.

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