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Doctor Who: The Doctor, The Widow, And The Wardrobe Blu-ray Review

“The Doctor, The Widow, And The Wardrobe” is not one of the better Christmas specials.

The plot: After a woman named Madge had helped the Doctor in the past, the Doctor vows to repay her. Years later, after Madge and her two children are forced to evacuate to a mansion during WWII, the Doctor appears once again posing as the mansion caretaker. His mission? To carry out Madge’s wish of giving her children the best Christmas ever amidst a tragic time of war and the loss of their father. Via a dimension portal that leads to a world of wood creatures and excavating miners, the Doctor sets out to give Madge and his two children an unforgettable Christmas filled with excitement, danger, and even some surprises.

After the best Christmas special to date in 2010 (“A Christmas Carol”), showrunner Steven Moffat unfortunately follows that X-Mas gem up with a fairly routine and predictable ode to “The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe.” While there a few charming comedic gags here and there, the central story with the Ent wannabe creatures, Madge’s family, and the miners are wooden and sappy (pun intended). For a writer (Moffat) who prides himself on clever stories and time travel plots, this felt far too pedestrian.

Thankfully, the episode is not a complete waste of time. The last 5 minutes of ‘Widow’ features a truly touching scene between the Doctor, Amy and Rory. It’s a real emotional and poignant scene that will warm any Whovian’s heart. It’s just a shame that the whole episode wasn’t like that one scene.

Summary: Even though it’s not a memorable episode, “The Doctor, The Widow, And The Wardrobe” is still worth owning for completeists like myself who need to have every episode of the new incarnation of “Doctor Who.”

Video/Audio:

From the exploding ship to the snowy landscapes, the widescreen 1080i picture quality is far and away the best “Doctor Who” episode transfer on Blu-ray to date.

The DTS-HD audio track is also a winner. In typical Who fashion, the sound f/x, music, and dialogue are exquisite.

Extras:
* Trailers for “Doctor Who: The Eternity Clock” and “Doctor Who” series 6.
* Stickers and a code for the “Doctor Who: Worlds In Time” online game.
* “The Doctor, The Widow, And The Wardrobe” prequel involving the Doctor on the spaceship at the opening of the episode.
* “The Best Of The Doctor,” “The Best Of The Companions,” and “The Best Of The Monsters,” are 3 BBC America specials featuring commentators such as Paul F. Tompkins, Chris Hardwick, Mark Sheppard, Danielle Harris, Amanda Palmer, Reggie Watts, Alison Haislip. Topics include a re-cap of the 11th Doctor era, the companions of the 11th Doctor era, and the aliens/villains in the 11th Doctor era.

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February 29, 2012 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , , , , ,

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