Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Doctor Who - A Christmas Carol

Who Stalwart Terrance Dicks used to say that all you need for a good Doctor Who story is a good original idea, but that the idea didn't have to be your good original idea. The Grand Moff has taken this fine tradition of getting stories off the back of a lorry and used it for this year's Christmas Special.

This was actually the first Christmas Special worthy of the name since Voyage of the Damned. The Next Doctor and The End of Time were regeneration specials far more than they were Christmas Specials. Like Voyage of the Damned it repeats the trick of "fit blonde singer as guest star" and as with Kylie, Katherine Jenkins does okay.

There's not a whole lot I can say about the plot itself other than the fact that the ending is a bit of a con. Fast forward another day and instead of a "happy" ending you've got a crotchety old man mourning over a dead welsh singer. I suspect that Kazran would've fallen into another bout of depression and bitterness. Speaking of Kazran, Michael Gambon was absolutely brilliant throughout. For my money the first person to steal the limelight from Matt Smith since he first Geronimoed onto our screens as the Doctor.

I really was taken with the idea of fish living in the atmosphere, a great little SF idea of the sort I could imagine cropping up in a Stephen Baxter book.

For my money The Chimes of Midnight still stands as the best overall Doctor Who Christmas story. But this was the best Doctor Who Christmas special to be shown on TV to date.

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