Now more than ever, we need your support! Become a Supporting Subscriber today.
THE UNQUIET DEAD
A great story but one that can't make me stop thinking THE DOCTOR'S A BIG LOSER. It's he that gets Gweneth killed, he that almost lets the Gelth loose, he that belittles Rose and Dicksens and he that is a big plain ole fool. And there's the difference between something like this and FENRIC and GHOST LIGHT, while I prefer this (better dialog, better characters, better motivation, better script and sets and effects and motivations), there the Doc has a plan. Here, he's just smiling away like a loon while bodies are being used and people are dying. What a jerk.
Well, it didn't make me like him much but Rose...ahhh, she IS a skank as she admits, cuts school (and a young person I showed FATHER'S DAY to, told me she thought Rose was a skank) but she is so well meaning and human and her banter with Gweneth is just great. Someone, somewhere (maybe in that NINTH DOCTOR BOOK, BACK INTO THE VORTEX) felt that Rose's talk with Gwenth slowed things down but that is what characterisation does: it slows things down a bit BUT it is needed to make us feel for the characters, something old DW and even ROSE and END OF THE WORLD could have learned when it came to the aliens but whatever, all three represent NEW WHO and all THREE ARE are much more brilliant than that TV MOVIE and the last five seasons of old DW that all the bad stuff (and here, there's not much that's bad, just that the Doctor is a big fat fool) is minimal compared to the good stuff.
The monsters. Does it make sense that releasing the gas will send them out of the bodies again in the end? Not really. Does it matter? A bit. They had to be defeated somehow and by someone other than the creepy Doctor ("Different morality") who basically does get Gwenth killed. This is the first (of maybe TWO) in the entire RTD canon (the other being, possibly a first season or second season TORCHWOOD!!!!??!?!!) of there being some thing other than what the faithless, athestic Doctor and RTD think of as the world (such as evidence of an AFTERLIFE). Of course, any one who doesn't believe in God or an afterlife will sum up other reasons why Gwenth, dead for five minutes, still could talk and be alive and help them somehow...other than she being an angel or a spirit or God blessed...but whatever...
The period stuff is so nice to see and hear, the sights and sounds of another time perfectly conveyed to our senses, for like, the first time in DW EVER! Well that might unfair as the MASSACRE looks pretty much like it did that and possibly REIGN OF TERROR...
Rose getting at Sneed is funny. The Doctor's "I love a happy medium" is funny, too. Some humor among the horror is welcome in what could have become a morbid killfest mess like FENRIC and GHOST LIGHT and...alot of other stuff.
Dickens' dilemma, Gwen's plight and saviing (oh and why won't anyone know a servant girl saved the world---why can't Rose tell EVERYONE she meets from then on and the Doc too. I know I wouldn't shut up about her and her bravery and caring) the world, how she feels about how Rose feels about her, the conversations (all of them important and interesting, even sometimes funny), and the talk all work. "There's wasn't a chance you were gonna say gazebo wasn't there?" "There's smething queer going on!" I'm sure while Mark and RTD know ful well that queer then meant something different then than it does now, they get a kick out of having that. And the Doctor takes two sugars (that could be a reference to something from either SHADA or some other story).
Honestly, this is a good piece of horror and adventure and sci fi and it cemented in my mind the fact that DW was back and good. Oh and one thing that bothers me: why does the TARDIS have to shake all the time and throw them to their backs (well I"m sure Rose is on her back a lot anyway but...)...I guess they do it for pace and fastness but the old TARDIS didn't muck about as much.
As for the TARDIS console room (is it really only called that in the Davison era?) control room whatever...while it's amazing to see the first time and it's lit in the last scene as white walled, I HATE IT. I love the First Doctor's huge TARDIS interior with all the alcoves and machinery as well as antiques. IT's clear RTD hates the TARDIS scenes and the TARDIS itself IMO. I hate the coral look, the ramshackle bits and wasn't crazed about thE TV MOVIE TARDIS either but even that is probably ....well, it's too large, too impersonal and this one seems that way too to be honest. I like it big like it was in the FIRST SEASON of the old series. Bring that back. I thnk the doors might just be an improvement.
The dialog is spot on but for "Down boy" from the Doctor to Dickens---was he afraid Dickens was going to go after Rose, the Doc's girlfriend? Scenes for next week looked....poor and worrisome.