Doctor Who: Season 2, Episode 12: Fear Her  » TV  »
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  • I also expected the TARDIS to move ten feet forward, but instead it just rotates itself, which I think is funnier to be honest

    • by David Finniss


      I didn’t have high hopes for this episode. From what I’ve read, I got the impression that this was supposed to be one of the stinkers of the series. Honestly, it’s not that bad. It’s not great, to be sure, but it has a lot of good things going for it.

      I loved the opening bit where the TARDIS appears between two dumpsters, blocking the door and forcing the Doctor to adjust the TARDIS’ position. When I saw the ship appear, I had hoped that it would turn out that they were blocked in. I also expected the TARDIS to move ten feet forward, but instead it just rotates itself, which I think is funnier to be honest.

      This episode is filled with subtle nods. The script doesn’t reference them specifically, but the tone mirrors pop culture icons. The scene where all the neighbors are

      accusing each other felt very much like a scene from “The Monsters are Due on Maple Street”. The scenes where Rose is investigating Chloe’s room felt like something out of “The X-Files” and, probably the most obvious nod is to “The Exorcist” with the Doctor conversing with an entity that is hiding inside the body of a little girl.

      If this episode does have a weak spot, it’s this little girl. I don’t know what she was going for, or what the director told her to do, but none of it felt natural to me. It wasn’t creepy, it wasn’t unnerving in any way, it was just whispering lines with no sense of tone. For an alien that is supposed to thrive on emotion, we see none of it. We’re supposed to sympathize with her loneliness, but her reading of the script is so lackluster that you can’t feel anything for her.

      Even the Doctor comes to the alien’s defense, but I have to side with Rose on this one. Isolus came off more as a whiny snit than anything else.

      Much like with “The Idiot’s Lantern”, this episode uses a momentous occasion (the Olympics as opposed to the coronation of the Queen) as a backdrop and as a means for the villain to exercise its power and pose its threat. It was similar, but the stories varied enough that it didn’t feel like a rehash. It’s especially impressive considering the themes themselves are very similar.

      There’s a bit at the end, after all of the captured people are brought back, that Rose wonders where the Doctor went. Even though everyone was returned to where they were plucked from in the first place, Rose expects him to show up right in front of her ...

      • Doctor Who: Season 2, Episode 12: Fear Her
      immediately. She doesn’t even think to look in the junkyard where she saw the Doctor and TARDIS disappear in the first place. Considering how smart she had been up until this point, it was rather jarring.

      By and large this is a self contained episode, but Torchwood does get a mention. Satan’s warning does come into play near the end after Rose cheerfully declares that no matter how hard threats try to tear them apart, that they will always be united. It’s a nice line, but it’s immediately undercut by the Doctor, who senses that “a storm is coming”. It’s a great way to end the episode as we come up on the two part season finale.

      The teaser for the next episode really threw me off. After two seasons, I’ve gotten accustomed to hearing that awesome, upbeat theme song as the title card scrolls by

      and we see scenes from the next episode. This time, all that goes away as the teaser is more somber. It makes sense as they want to play up the idea that Rose is going to die, and it works well, but it still threw me off a little.

      Is this one of Doctor Who’s highlight episodes? No, not even close, but it isn’t terrible either. I liked it better than “Love and Monsters” and the episode had a lot going for it. A lot of stuff didn’t work, but there was enough good here that it didn’t completely waste my time. A lot of people cringed at the idea of the Doctor carrying the torch. Ok, it in hindsight, it may’ve been a tad corny, but honestly, it didn’t bother me that much.

      If this is as bad as the series gets, I’m not too worried.

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The review was published as it's written by reviewer in July, 2011. The reviewer certified that no compensation was received from the reviewed item producer, trademark owner or any other institution, related with the item reviewed. The site is not responsible for the mistakes made. 1031071516950531/k2311a0731/7.31.11
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