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Doctor Who: Series 6, Part 2 Blu-ray Review

The second half of the sixth series of “Doctor Who” is stronger than the first half.

The second half of series kicks off with an interesting episode (“Let’s Kill Hitler”) that offers up several major revelations about River Song’s characters. Unfortunately, the wrap around story involving Hitler (who is pretty much a MacGuffin) and a “Meet Dave” rip-off subplot involving human looking robots being piloted by alien beings fall flat. Luckily, the River Song elements and the episode’s abundance of humor make up for the shortcomings.

The second episode (“Night Terrors”) is definitely the weakest episode of the back half. The story, which involves a scared child who has monsters in his bedroom, strongly resembles the lackluster tenth Doctor era episode “Fear Her”. There’s a neat, spooky story in here, but unfortunately, the execution leaves a lot to be desired. The episode does boast one highlight involving the Doctor telling a story that references past episodes and foes.

After “Night Terrors,” ‘Who’ bounces back with the best episode of the back 6, “The Girl Who Waited”. This is a touching, emotional time story about Amy being stuck in a health center on the disease stricken planet Apalapucia for 36 years in an advanced time stream waiting for Rory and the Doctor to rescue her. This is the type of episode that perfectly balances humor, happy endings, with some real tear jerker moments. I won’t say what I mean by that because you need to see it for yourself.

“The God Complex” is another episode like “Night Terrors” that should have been better than it is. The story concerns the Doctor, Amy, Rory, and several other people/aliens being stuck in a hotel with a killer Minotaur and rooms containing their greatest fears. The episode starts out strong with some cool visuals and memorable new characters, but as the episode progresses, the story sadly begins to fall apart. Note: Whovians should be on the lookout for a reference to “The Horns Of Nimon” episode from the fourth Doctor era.

The next episode (“Closing Time”) is easily the second best episode of the back six on this set. ‘Time’ sees the return of both the Cybermen and Craig from the wonderful series 5 episode “The Lodger”. Expect lots of great banter between Craig and the Doctor, but Craig’s baby (AKA Stormageddon) absolutely steals the show here.

Series 6 concludes with a let down of a series finale with “The Wedding Of River Song”. The ongoing story arcs about the Doctor’s “death,” the Silence, River Song, Madam Kovarian, and time problems are all addressed here, but the end result is a predictable cop-out if there ever was one.

Summary: These six episodes are decidedly hit-and-miss, but this Blu-ray set is still worth picking up just for “The Girl Who Waited” and “Closing Time” alone.

Video/Audio:

The widescreen 1080i picture quality is dazzling. From the TARDIS interior to the Utah locals, the colors really pop in hi-def.  

From the Cybermen voices and the masterful sound f/x to the catchy score and Sonic Screwdriver buzzing, this 5.1 DTS-HD audio track delivers the goods.

Extras:
* BBC America and “Doctor Who: A Christmas Carol” ads.

* “Monster Files: The Anti-Bodies”- A featurette on the robotic anti-bodies on boad the teselecta in “Let’s Kill Hitler”.
* Monster Files: The Cybermats”- A featurette about the Cybermats (and the Cybermen) in “Closing Time”. Footage and discussions about the Cybermats in classic ‘Who’ is also included.

November 14, 2011 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , , , ,

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