The Doctor Dances
The Doctor: It’s sonic, totally sonic. I am sonicked up!
Captain Jack Harkness: A sonic what?
Production Code: 1.10.
Doctor Who Season: S27 (Ep10).
Story Number: 164b.
A great resolution to the cliffhanger…
The Doctor ordering the “empty child” to its room has a resonance though, it’s an echo of what the Doctor told Constantine last week in response to the other doctor saying “Before this war began, I was a father and a grandfather. Now I’m neither. But I’m still a doctor,” the Doctor replies “Yeah. I know the feeling”.
The Doctor finds himself cast in another role beside indignant father and that’s as a rival (to Captain Jack) for Rose’s affections. There’s a hilarious scene where the Doctor tries to big up his Sonic Tech compared to what Jack’s packing.
After Captain Jack vanishes there’s a nice scene with Rose teasing the Doctor about “dancing”, and the best line of the story is the Doctor’s reply – “Rose, I’m trying to resonate concrete…” Via the Chula “Om-Com” Jack explains his absence and what happened: which also explains the voice from the TARDIS telephone and more – the Science Fiction of this story is very neatly plotted.
Speaking of neatly plotted Science Fiction – the cloud of nanogenes from Jack’s Chula ship is a nudge and a way for the viewer to try and guess what’s causing all the problems.
The trio meet up on crash site of the Chula cylinder, and Rose, meeting Nancy as she converges on the site too, gets to reinforce the speech of the Doctor’s last week, telling her “you win!” There’s a similar celebration of Britain as the Doctor tells the crowd “beat the Germans, save the world, don’t forget the welfare state!”
The Doctor gets to act the Sherlock this story, not only deducing what’s happening with the Chula nanogenes but also solving the mystery of why the “empty child” is asking “Are you my mummy?”
It’s a real swooping emotional crescendo when Nancy lets Jamie approach, and in a way the – war survivor – Doctor is also healed, healed a bit more by this story. Rose has gradually been bringing him out of his shell this season, and him loosening up and dancing by the end of the story is another aspect of that. It’s an amazing Doctor Who story, one full of fizzing dialogue, one that really adds layers of depth to the characterisation of the Doctor.
Rating: 5/5 (for this part of the story, previous ep 5/5)
and for the whole story, 5/5.