TS

"Theta Sigma"

15/04/2010 12:18 PM

The Beast Below (spoilers)

In the opening scene we see the recurrence of the number zero. Last week we
had Prisoner Zero, and here a young boy gets a grade of zero from his
robotic teacher. Then after he breaks the rules and rides in the lift, he
is sent to floor 000 where the floor opens up and drops him down to the
beast below.

Meanwhile, the Doctor is trying to check out (and play the part of) Amy's
"beast below" while looking up her nighty as she floats above him just
outside the TARDIS in outer space. Check out the huge grin on his face.

The Doctor lies to Amy and tells her he never gets involved and they can
only ever observe... until he notices Mandy, another young girl on the cusp
of puberty, on the scanner and prompty runs outside so he can deliberately
bump up against her body four times while trying to grab something.

Then he tells Amy this society is on the brink of collapse and there's a
police state everywhere. Thank goodness this is purely fictional, and the
real U.K. is not anything like a police state. This show really comes up
with some fantastic scenarios, like last week with the constant surveilance
from the eyes in the sky. Next week: the British military are Daleks.

Anyway, back to this week. We first see Liz 10 while she's sitting in front
of a shrine of water filled glasses. Remember, kids, drink at least 8
glasses a day. We never find out why there's a chandelier on the floor, and
the reason we eventually find out why both she and the Doctor are obsessed
with the glasses of water isn't very satisfying.

For one thing, the engines wouldn't even need to be on unless they were
speeding up, slowing down or needed to turn the ship. For another, the
bigger a ship is you are less likely to feel vibrations from the engines,
you'd think even less so where artificial gravity is involved. Wouldn't the
source of whatever's creating all the power and electricity on the ship also
cause vibrations in the water?

Liz 10... or Elizabeth X... either way sounds like a setup for a spinoff
starring Sophie Okonedo. The thought of that reminds me of a show called
Cleopatra 2525.

We had the metaphor between the Doctor and the last of the star whales
spelled out to us not just once but twice by Amy. Are we gonna have these
Trek like moments every week? Apart from that I had to rewatch this episode
several times before a lot of things even made sense.

At the very end we see a crack in the ship, with a blue light inside of it.
I think the cracks, the blue light and the number zero are all important and
are part of the story arc which will come together later in the season.
This is also the second episode in a row where the Doctor molests a very
young girl and calls someone "dear".

Matt Smith's performance was very reminiscent of Patric Troughton, the 2nd
Doctor. The only thing I've found annoying about it so far is how the
scriptwriter has him explain who he is and what he does just before he shows
us. This could get tedious after a while.


This topic has 2 replies

SW

"Stephen Wilson"

in reply to "Theta Sigma" on 15/04/2010 12:18 PM

15/04/2010 7:17 PM

"Daibhid Ceanaideach" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]
>
> (Did you notice that, last week, a computer virus infected a *mechanical
> clock*?)

I did. I've moaned once or twice before about lack of scientific credibility
in Dr Who. And nice although some of Moffat's ideas may be, they fall apart
as soon as you try thinking about any of them logically. They only work in a
Harry Potter kind of way.

RTD wasn't much better, but there was occasionally some kind of logic to
most of his stories.

Is this important? Well it is to me. In this day and age, it seems to be
trendy to knock science. Science says the MMR vaccine does not cause autism.
Yet many parents remain scared of the vaccine. Science says there is no
evidence that homeopathy works. Yet many people happily pay a fortune for
this kind of treatment. Etc, etc, etc.

So does this mean that someone who has a poor grasp of science (such as
Moffat) shouldn't write stories for Dr Who? No. But it means that, just as
they would be expected to do some research for any story set in Earth's
past, they should also research other areas in which they are on shaky
ground.

Some of the best stories actually came from scientists who looked at what
was going on in the world right now and took them just that little bit
further. Hence the idea of prosthetics led Kit Pedler to develop the
Cybermen. And someone like Kit Pedler would be a great resource to the Dr
Who team. Someone with that kind of background could read through a script,
and instead of telling them that something *couldn't* be done, they'd find
ways of doing something in a slightly different way, but one which was a
little more realistic.

DC

Daibhid Ceanaideach

in reply to "Theta Sigma" on 15/04/2010 12:18 PM

15/04/2010 6:42 PM

On 15 Apr 2010, "Theta Sigma" <[email protected]> wrote:

> the reason we eventually find out why both she and the
> Doctor are obsessed with the glasses of water isn't very satisfying.
>
> For one thing, the engines wouldn't even need to be on unless they
> were speeding up, slowing down or needed to turn the ship. For
> another, the bigger a ship is you are less likely to feel vibrations
> from the engines, you'd think even less so where artificial gravity is
> involved. Wouldn't the source of whatever's creating all the power
> and electricity on the ship also cause vibrations in the water?

Yeah ... I don't insist every writer be Chris Bidmead, but it's
unfortunate that the Moff's "fairy tale" sensibility seems to entail an
even shakier grasp of science than RTD.

(Did you notice that, last week, a computer virus infected a *mechanical
clock*?)

> We had the metaphor between the Doctor and the last of the star whales
> spelled out to us not just once but twice by Amy. Are we gonna have
> these Trek like moments every week?

Someone on LJ suggested that the point of the second scene wasn't really
the belabouring of "Amy recognises the whale is like the Doctor", it was
that, even after it was spelt out the first time, the Doctor himself
still hadn't got it. IOW, Amy doesn't just understand the Doctor, she
understands him better than *he* does.

--
Dave
Hello, I'm the Doctor. Basically ... run.


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