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     Home »  The David Tennant Era »  s4e7 The Unicorn and the Wasp [Spoilers]
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    s4e7 The Unicorn and the Wasp [Spoilers] Views: 3582
     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 06:57 PM EDT

    This was a fun romp. All the detective novel clichés wrapped around some Doctor Who clichés. An enjoyable tale...

    Daleks don't accept apologies! YOU WILL BE EXTERMINATED!
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 07:43 PM EDT
    [Quote  by:  tarashnat]
    This was a fun romp. All the detective novel clichés wrapped around some Doctor Who clichés. An enjoyable tale...


    It was great - although I didn't notice until the Confidential - that David's Dad had a small part in it.

    And also was nice to see the actor from 'The Talons of Weng-Chiang' who played Henry Gordon Jago in this episode.

    Cheers, daveac

    daveac on blip.tv, TalkShoe, iTunes, LiveVideo, uStream, GE, Sci-Fi, DWO, DS & WTA, Dave C on WLP, cooperda on AVF, dac100 on YouTube & PB, dac on Tiscali
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 08:23 PM EDT

    Christopher Benjamin, yes!

    Daleks don't accept apologies! YOU WILL BE EXTERMINATED!
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 08:25 PM EDT



    Yawn...

    Reminder: We will be reviewing this episode tomorrow (Sunday) for Doctor Who: Podshock LIVE on Talkshoe at 12 PM EDT (US).

    You can find it here.

    Join in on the podcast. We want to know what your opinion is of The Unicorn and the Wasp.

    Cheers,
    Louis

    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 08:27 PM EDT
    [Quote  by:  daveac] ...

    And also was nice to see the actor from 'The Talons of Weng-Chiang' who played Henry Gordon Jago in this episode.

    Cheers, daveac


    I recognized him immediately. It was hard to believe it was him as he doesn't seem to have aged a day in the last quarter of century or more now.

    Cheers,
    Louis

    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 08:48 PM EDT
    It's odd that with the fourth series we begin to enter a Graham Williams period to the RTD era, as these stories feel a bit light-hearted without contracting quality. This episode was the first episode since Partners in Crime this season to make me laugh out loud for an expanded period of time (ie the miming scene in PIC and the kitchen charades scene in TUATW, almost gave me a Young Frankenstein feel to it.)
    An excellent comedic episode with a fantastic cast, 5/5 Tardis groans.

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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 09:05 PM EDT
    [Quote  by:  Louis]

    Yawn...

    Cheers,
    Louis


    I take it you weren't impressed?

    I quite enjoyed it.

    Cheers, daveac

    daveac on blip.tv, TalkShoe, iTunes, LiveVideo, uStream, GE, Sci-Fi, DWO, DS & WTA, Dave C on WLP, cooperda on AVF, dac100 on YouTube & PB, dac on Tiscali
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 09:30 PM EDT
    [Quote  by:  daveac]
    [Quote  by:  Louis]

    Yawn...

    Cheers,
    Louis


    I take it you weren't impressed?

    I quite enjoyed it.

    Cheers, daveac


    Impressed? No, I can't say that I am by it overall. But it did have it's moments.

    Even with the obvious overture to the whole murder mystery genre, it would have been more enjoyable for me if it was a pure historical episode. Because the science FICTION or I should say science FANTASY element of it was just so preposterous.

    But like I said, it had it's moments. There were some enjoyable scenes. I really like seeing Christopher Benjamin again... if that is really him... he looks almost the same age as I remember him in Talons 30 some odd years ago.

    Cheers,
    Louis


    ☛ Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LouisTrapani ♥ ♥
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 10:00 PM EDT
    I especially liked the references to earlier episodes, such as the reference to "Blink". Light-hearted and fun; I laughed out loud several times. Still not as good as "The Fires of Pompeii", but better than "Partners in Crime" for me. I was slightly disappointed that there was no reference to Bessie during the car chase, though! 4/5

    Did you say "74,384,338 to 1 against"? That's my lucky number!
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     Saturday, May 17 2008 @ 11:48 PM EDT
    I'm a happy bunny tonight!

    It didn't have me edge of my seat or anything - (I understand Louis yawning!) But still, I enjoyed it with no major/glaring complaints. I even thought the high contrast shadows on the bee were an interesting visual effect we've never seen before. Nothing to get under my skin like last week.

    All in all, it was like Tapas for me. Satisfying and I don't feel too full.

    If Worzel Gummidge and the Third Doctor had a fist fight - who would win?
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     Sunday, May 18 2008 @ 03:43 AM EDT
    OK. I’m trying to resist the temptation to over-analyse this. It was a romp, pure and simple, and I think that picking faults in it would be kind of like saying that a fairy tale doesn’t work because obviously wolves don’t talk, blah, blah... you have to suspend disbelief occasionally for Doctor Who to work. But, this is a review and still I have to put my finger on why, even though I was primed after a dinner party and, ok, just one or two glasses of red to be just in the right frame of mind for this, I loved the first forty minutes and was a little disappointed by the ending.
    Things I liked: there were a lot of similarities / in-jokes for obvious reasons to the Shakespeare Code last year and in some ways I think these worked better. There were the overt references to Christie’s work blurted out inadvertently but also, I feel, quite naturally by Donna and the hidden references which were fun to try and spot. There was the vespiform, a good monster and an attempt to be original (although here I am shocked that it had nothing to do with the bees’ disappearance – I was so sure...)
    Things I loved: Donna, yet again. She had the funniest lines (“Funny place to wear them!”) and is growing in confidence. All the things which her false fiancé in the Runaway Bride hated about her, the Doctor is showing her that these very same things are strengths – she may not be the world’s greatest intellectual but she is extremely unpretentious and has a joy for life that helps her often to cut through to the heart of the matter while the Doctor is still busy trying to impress everybody around him. She doesn’t fall for this last fact – I loved the opening scene where the Doctor pompously tries to persuade her that he can tell just by smell which decade they are in. She doesn’t stand for this! I believe in Donna when she gasps at meeting Agatha and when she watches the mystery's resolution like a fan watching a film - it is all true to her character. I also loved the style of the episode – again, it was a romp, meant to be stylised and fun – don’t over-analyse it.
    Things I wasn’t so hot on: maybe I didn’t feel like the resolution was totally necessary – contrived can be ok if there is no other narrative devices available but here I felt it tried to be clever in ways that it didn’t need to be and that this detracted from the plot. The vespiform was acting like an Agatha Christie character because it had absorbed the plots from its mother – mmmm. Why not just because it was killing those who knew its secret: the professor and the maid, and maybe the son from jealousy. I also didn’t get in what way or how it had become linked to Agatha’s mind – wasn’t his mother wearing the necklace?
    Also the title? What was the unicorn bit all about – she didn’t play that much of a part in the story to be able to take equal billing with the wasp.
    My biggest concern though sometimes is that the slapstick elements (Donna playing charades as the Doctor is struggling to rid his body of the poison) for my tastes sometimes dance over the line of absurd. Alien and different and funny I love, but for me, they have to be a little more careful with these elements of the programme.
    Alright, stop it. Stop picking it to pieces now. That’s not how you’re supposed to watch this type of episodes!
    Overall, a lot of fun. Showed once again how our favourite programme can adapt to any format. Donna great! Ultimately, fluffy and substanceless but that was sort of the point. 3.5 out of 5

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     Sunday, May 18 2008 @ 03:48 AM EDT
    Oh..oh yeah...and I feel that we deserved more of a trailer than the one we got as compensation for the Eurovision Travesty!

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     Sunday, May 18 2008 @ 04:45 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  Louis]
    [Quote  by:  daveac] ...

    And also was nice to see the actor from 'The Talons of Weng-Chiang' who played Henry Gordon Jago in this episode.

    Cheers, daveac


    I recognized him immediately. It was hard to believe it was him as he doesn't seem to have aged a day in the last quarter of century or more now.

    Cheers,
    Louis


    I thought the same thing. Apart from his hair going white, he's not changed. I'd love to see Jago make a comeback at some stage, Talons is an all time fave of mine and Jago one of the best realised supporting characters.

    But Christopher Benjamins being in it just reminded me how great that story was compared to this one. I think this would have worked better as a pure historical tale. They should have just dropped the unnecesary giant wasp, which I personally thought was a daft idea. Sure, maybe a wasp like alien would have worked, but this didn't, in my eyes. A tenuous tie-in to a random book cover.

    This was one of the strongest examples of the 45 minute format not working for some stories. The whole thing felt rushed, the characters were two-dimensional and character development was minimal.

    And what was the point of even having the unicorn in it?? She added nothing to the story.

    The best part for me was Graeme Harpers direction - some great camera angles. He put the camera in places we're not used to. I liked all the point of view shots from extreme angles, like the end of the doctors finger or behind the grating in the Tardis. Nicely done Mr Harper. Some very pretty effects shots too, especially the vistas of India in the flashbacks Smile

    For me this is 2.5 Tardis groans out of five. It only gets the extra half point over the previous few episodes (all 2 Tardis groans from me) because Graeme Harper did such a good job and I was so pleased to see Chris Benjamin again!

    I hope Mr Moffat deleivers again next time, as I feel like this series is in a need of a really decent story.

    If half the art of survival is running away, the other half is knowing when to keep a straight face.
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     Sunday, May 18 2008 @ 05:10 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  Idiom] Oh..oh yeah...and I feel that we deserved more of a trailer than the one we got as compensation for the Eurovision Travesty!

    There will be a trailer for the rest of the series right before the EuroVision Whatsits, so do not fret!

    Daleks don't accept apologies! YOU WILL BE EXTERMINATED!
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     Sunday, May 18 2008 @ 05:16 AM EDT
    [Quote  by:  Idiom] The vespiform was acting like an Agatha Christie character because it had absorbed the plots from its mother – mmmm. Why not just because it was killing those who knew its secret: the professor and the maid, and maybe the son from jealousy. I also didn’t get in what way or how it had become linked to Agatha’s mind – wasn’t his mother wearing the necklace?

    He/It was killing because he/it felt disenfranchised. It was the method of the murders that was in the Christie mold. Why wouldn't a giant wasp just use its stinger in all the attacks?

    As for how the vespiform was linked to Christie, that is a question for the author. I don't have a simple explanation for that one. We never got a good explanation of how the necklace actually works.

    Daleks don't accept apologies! YOU WILL BE EXTERMINATED!
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