Exile on TV – Doctor Who: The Eleventh Hour

Doctor Who


The Eleventh Hour
BBC (3 April)
(BBC America 17 April)

Matth Smith
Karen Gillan

Written by Steven Moffat

Directed by Adam Smith

Hello Doctor 11, with your youthful looks, and blimey, that chin, your manic entrance, and still not ginger. Here’s to you, take us someplace… fantastic. Look out below!

That was how we met you back in Janurary, all so briefly. Cut to four months later we finally see where the new new new Doctor and his racketity old TARDIS land.

This new series has been compared many ways to the beginning of Jon Pertwee’s run in 1970, an in my opinion that is good comparison (and pretty nice company).

One thing is for certain, Matt Smith’s Doctor is having a much rougher first day than his predecessor, who got to spend most of it in bed. No, the 11th Doctor literally hits the ground running (into a tree.) This Doctor has perhaps the most manic arrival since Tom Baker. He has a brash recklessness to him not seen in sometimes and genuine wonder and excitement at the universe around him. He is more alien than 10 was and despite his youthful appearance, Matt Smith’s portayal gives an air and weight of a years of experience.  One thing is clear, don’t underestimate this Doctor (something many of his foes most certain will do. Maybe it’s the bowtie.)

Karen Gillan makes quite the impression on the Doctor in their first meeting. I like her and it’s not just the ginger hair and Scottish accent. Like the Doctor, she is clearly older than her years.  Even her 7 year old self (played by the actress’ young cousin) is braver and wiser than most of the people around her.

Of course the new Doctor, and new companion aren’t the only new folks, as new show runner and  head writer Steven Moffat begins to put his stamp on the series.  Like RTD before him  Steven grew up watching Doctor Who, like us he is a fan of the show.  He has also been the writer for some of the best episodes of the past 5 years,  The Empty Child,   The Girl in the Fireplace, and Blink.

Smith’s first foray into saving the world involves a escaped shape shifting alien prisoner, a fleet of warships surrounding the Earth, Kiss-o-grams, and Patrick Moore.   With no TARDIS (as its repairing itself), no sonic screwdriver (having just exploded in his hand) and only 20 minutes before the Earth is incinerated, can the Doctor save the world?  Who da man?

What does the future hold for the Doctor?    I can honestly say I don’t know, but I am very excited for what looks to be 13 amazing episodes, and as the BBC has already announced a 6th series, here’s to many more to come.

Grade: A

About David Vandervliet

Once, King of all these lands, but now I am just an aging nerd. I enjoy talking about my favorite things to geek about, and hopefully I say something to make you think a little too. My favorite things include: Comics, Doctor Who, Star Wars, Star Trek, Science, Astronomy, Math, Music, theatre, movies, writing, baseball, college football (Go Blue!)
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  1. Finally just watched this! Loved it! Looking forward to seeing where this Doctor and his new companion take us!

  2. Oops – that last comment was mine!

    • I am waiting for the return of the Weeping Angels the most. And apparently the finale this season is epic, if Matt Smith is to be believed (from what he said at the screening in NYC that I attended.

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