Series 9: Under the Flood

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So the second story of Series 9 is another two parter and I may as well confess straight away that I loved it so if you didn’t then maybe stop reading now!
As I think I’ve said before 90 minutes just seems like the right length for a Who story. It was also nice to see a adventure where The Doctor and Clara just turn up and get involved.
The idea of ghosts is good and gives us some great spooky scenes and the end explanation for them makes sense once explained.  The logic of the story holds up with its various time paradoxes especially on repeat viewings.
The base crew are a good group of characters and nice to see the show using a character with a disability in a positive way  and the scene with her being followed by the ghost is horror storytelling by the numbers but is effective even if it made her seem like Daredevil with their choice of visualisation.
The Fisher King is effective enough and they’ve given him a good voice and made him look reasonably impressive, The confrontation with The Doctor is good too. Capaldi does these scenes so well and he’s easily becoming the best of the new series Doctor’s.
The resolution was very guessable in Part 1 but it was a great ride getting there and how wonderful that no one said that awful phrase “timey-wimey” when explaining the paradox.
Also as an aside I quite liked the guitar rockier theme, just felt more right for Capaldi’s Doctor. 
So that’s four out of four excellent episodes. Such a shame that some fans are too wrapped up in their Moffat hate to watch with a open mind. Maybe once the production team changes they may give these a fairer chance and reevaluate them similar to what’s happened with the stories from the late 80’s.

3 thoughts on “Series 9: Under the Flood

  1. There was no time paradox, except for the bootstrap paradox explained for dummies in the intro to part 2 – and that wasn’t necessary to the plot, so I wonder if it was added simply to give Peter another chance to play guitar?!

    Speaking of which, I feel part two should have been called “The Axes of Evil” 🙂

  2. I should have added that I agree with your review – this is one of my favourite stories of the last couple of years, along with the Mummy one, Flatline and the Santa one. I only have a couple of gripes with it (and if you knew me you’d know that is very high praise) …

    It’s a shame the deaf character was put in – apparently just to read the ghost’s lips – in a hi-tech future where she’d at least have an easier way to communicate than a personal assistant, and most likely would have a cochleal implant or some sort of futuristic gene therapy. Very worthy but would have been far better in a story NOT set in a hi-tech version of 2119.

    And then there’s O’Donnell’s death. Aside from her only looking vaguely worried as the alien approached, rather than terrified as most people would be, there was also the little matter of her being killed in 1980 and her ghost only appearing in 2119 at that point in the story. Really, it should have been there all the time, as I assume the undertaker’s ghost was.

    And (OK, three gripes) the intro to the bootstrap paradox, used by Robert Heinlein in 1939 (in the story that invented the term, as well as being responsible for us talking about “booting up” a computer) – was that really necessary? Surely Doctor Who viewers aren’t so stupid nowadays that they need such a basic SF trope explained? It was used in Star Trek without a to-camera monologue. Come on, credit us with a bit of intelligence!

    Anyway that’s my 2c.

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