Top Series 7 Part 2 Moments
John Hussey lists his top moments from the second half of Series 7.
8. Flashback to the Past
‘The Name of the Doctor’ had lots I was looking forward to, but what truly blew me away was the inclusion of the Classic Doctors. I will admit I was slightly disappointed that they didn’t appear in person (aside from the first three actors who are sadly no longer with us). But overall it was a nice attempt to include them into the anniversary year and I hope they are also included again somehow within the anniversary special itself in November. It also allowed for the brilliant revelation behind Clara’s mystery which was just another genius end of the series’ conclusion which then led (as usual with Moffat) into the next dangers that will confront the Doctor in the next set of adventures. The part I loved most about the flashbacks was the inclusion of the First Doctor stealing the TARDIS and running away from Gallifrey. It was cleverly put together with doubles standing in for William Hartnell and Carole Ann Ford for the long shots, and then having a colourised piece of footage from one of Hartnell’s episodes to interact with Clara. It was truly exciting to see as a long-term fan such as myself.
7. Unveiling the New TARDIS
The scene in ‘The Snowmen’ where the Doctor not only unveiled the new Console Room to Clara Oswin Oswald, but to the audience as well, was an iconic moment indeed. The way it was directed by Saul Metzstein in which it depicted the camera going from the outside of the TARDIS straight into the inside without a cut in the editing process was a beautiful transition that helped made the moment of the unveiling all the more stunning. The darkness lifts and the ships new persona was revealed to the point where Clara was shot dead in the middle of her bickering session at the Doctor. What made the moment all the more better was the Doctor’s proud speech towards his magnificent spacecraft and its capabilities, showcasing quite clearly that the Doctor was a changed man and had finally met redemption from his long period of depression and hatred. What finished off the scene nicely was Clara’s spin on the long TARDIS gag “It’s bigger on the inside” by saying “It’s smaller on the outside.” The Doctor’s reaction when she said that was priceless.
6. Downloading the Downloader
The resolution to ‘The Bells of Saint John’ was just plain brilliant. Brilliant because we didn’t see it coming and it demonstrated how manipulative the Doctor can be, especially when provoked. Miss Kizlet was shot down in flames by her own sinister technology and was downloaded by the same Spoonhead that she sent to download Clara. This little plan was deviously planned to force Miss Kizlet into reversing her terrible affects, combined with further manipulation after the Doctor used Kizlet’s tablet to change the emotions and behaviour of her colleagues, in a similar fashion which she had done previously in the story. It just worked perfectly because everything Kizlet had done to others was used back onto her and destroyed her operations.
5. Reintroducing the Ice Warriors
‘Cold War’ did the brilliant job of reintroducing one of Classic Who’s most iconic monsters in a very unique and interesting way. The scene where the Doctor first came face to face with Grand Marshal Skaldak was just tense and full of suspension. It was already clearly established that the setting of the story was the Cold War where both America and Soviet Russia were on the verge of war and now the Russians came face to face with an unstoppable creature of war which could only lead to disaster, death and destruction. What further enhanced the tension was the fact the Doctor was shocked by the announcement of the Ice Warrior’s name. It left us wondering, who is this warrior and why does the Doctor fear his name so much? Then it ended with one of the soldiers attacking the creature from behind which basically declared war between everyone onboard the Firebird and the Martian with the Doctor fiercely ordering Captain Zhukov to lock the Grand Marshal up. What finished the scene was the fact we got to see the return of the Ice Warriors in all their glory and Mark Gatiss did a fantastic job at re-establishing them to the show.
4. Never Trust a Mad Man
I just loved the scene in ‘Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS’ where the Doctor bribed the Baalen Brothers into helping him search for Clara in the depths of his spacecraft. Again, another scene which demonstrated the Doctor’s manipulative side and actually depicted him as quite mad. It’s also rather crafty as well. The Doctor doesn’t bribe them violently; he simply activates a self-destruct device and lowers the detonation time until they finally give in to his demands. What I love most about the scene is the Doctor’s dialogue, “My ship, my rules! Never get into a spaceship with a mad man. Didn’t anyone ever tell you that?” Plus I like how the Doctor further manipulated the Baalen Brothers by stating his promise for the greatest salvage wasn’t his TARDIS but in fact Clara, just showcasing how the Doctor has the power to manipulate others by simply using words.
3. The Doctor’s Speech
‘The Rings of Akhaten’ is one of my all time favourite episodes from Series 7 and for good reason. Not only was the singing beautiful, the story wasn’t half bad and kept me glued to the screen over and over again. The part I loved most about the story was the poetic speech the Doctor gave to the Old God, telling it a very long story in order to appease it. It gave nice call-backs to the past, i.e. the Great Time War, an event big within the mythology of the revived series for good reason and one that is rarely spoken about within Moffat’s era and when it does, Matt Smith pulls off a good performance in expressing Eleven’s feelings on the matter. The tears are what complete it for me. It really expressed the tone and emotion of the scene and gave the finally touches it needed to make it an epic moment within the history of the show. Accompanied by the beautiful singing from Merry Galel and the native aliens, the Doctor’s speech made its point, “Well come then! Take it! Take it all baby! You have it all!”
2. Doctor Who?!
The dark scene in ‘The Name of the Doctor’ where the Great Intelligence attempted to ask the Doctor the First Question in order to gain access to his tomb on Trenzalore was extremely tense and suspenseful. I was literally on the edge of my seat as the Whispermen grew closer to stopping the hearts of Clara, Madame Vastra and Jenny while the Doctor desperately tried holding back the dangerous answer that the Great Intelligence required. What also made it tense was whether or not the Doctor’s great secret, i.e. his name, would be revealed. Along with that there was the mystery of what actually lied inside the Doctor’s tomb. What was so dangerous that the Silence wished to kill the Time Lord in order to prevent him from ever opening the doors to his tomb and why did the Great Intelligence want with this said dangerous thing? As it turned out, River Song came to rescue and answered the question off-screen in order to save the Doctor from revealing his great secret and to also save his friends from death at the hands of the terrifying Whispermen. Alas, his secret wasn’t revealed and we were given a few moments to breathe.
1. The Doctor’s Greatest Secret
My favourite moment from Series 7: Part 2 was none other than the climatic cliffhanger to ‘The Name of the Doctor’. It was shocking and completely bloody brilliant. Moffat is certainly a genius and that genius isn’t faltering in any way. The Doctor’s greatest secret was finally out and we finally discovered why the Silence didn’t want the Doctor to reach Trenzalore; because he holds information on his most dangerous memory – The Forgotten Doctor. It was clear that the Forgotten Doctor had done something truly terrible, possibly being the one who ended the Time War, which he had little choice in doing. Although he claimed he did it for peace and sanity, the Eleventh Doctor informed us that this act wasn’t in the name of the Doctor. Then we got those gobsmacking final words; “Introducing John Hurt as the Doctor”. It was a fantastic cliff-hanger and it also raised some interesting questions, in particular the meaning of the episodes title ‘The Name of the Doctor’. It was originally thought that the name meant what it meant, the revealing of his actual name, but in fact it means something entirely different. It actual means what the Doctor stands for and his chosen name is like a code or a promise passed onto each of his incarnations in order to remain true to who he is and what he stands for. This is what makes the concept of the Forgotten Doctor so interesting. What exactly has he done to break that promise? I’m guessing all will be revealed in the 50th Anniversary Special in November.
I hope you enjoyed my article and the choices I made. Please feel free to express your own favourite moments from the second half of Series 7 in the comment section below.