Television: Doctor Who and the Snowmen

"The Snowmen"

Christmas Eve 1892 and the falling snow is the stuff of fairy-tales. When the fairy-tale becomes a nightmare and a chilling menace threatens Earth, an unorthodox young governess, Clara, calls on the Doctor for help. But the Doctor is in mourning, reclusive and determined not to engage in the problems of the universe. As old friends return, will the Doctor really abandon humankind or will he fight to save the world – and Christmas – from the icy clutches of this mysterious menace.

Holy snow! Doctor Who is back–well, maybe not back-back–and it is awesome.

Number one: No, I did not miss Rory or Amy throughout the whole episode. Whether that’s because I’ve started to get used to the fact that the Ponds don’t really play that big a part in any of the Christmas specials is a claim that will be tested once the second half of the series finally airs. That said, while I love the Ponds, I did not miss them in this episode. Maybe I’ve moved on. Maybe I’m already in love with Clara. There’s so many Maybes, so let’s move on to–

Number two: The Doctor Who I fell in love with back in Series 5 is back. The last five episodes aired, the program’s farewell to the Ponds, were awesome and magical. But… How do I say this?

They don’t feel like the Doctor Who introduced us when Matt Smith and Karen Gillan first came along.

The episodes were brilliant and heart-wrenching–but it was way too smart. Aside from the premiere and the mid-series finale, the other episodes leave you with a feeling of being one-upped on. And, while I still loved the episodes–nay, the mini-movies–(way more than I do most of the episodes from Series 6), I couldn’t help but not like them as well. They’re too different.

Change is good, yes. And all the changes that have been made were in small increments. But small changes make up to a big change. And re-watching Series 5, though not a perfect series, made me realize that I have been steadily falling out of love with Doctor Who since Series 6’s The Rebel Flesh. Well since The Curse of the Black Spot, actually. But The Doctor’s Wife was such a stellar episode that my love for the show returned for a single episode, before returning to its slow wither.

With The Snowmen though– It’s hard to explain. It’s like, someone just flipped a switch and the magic was suddenly back.

Maybe it helped that the new companion isn’t completely a stranger. Jenna-Louise Coleman already appeared in the Series 7 opener, albeit with a different character. And while there are marked differences in the way her new character, Clara, is portrayed, you can’t help yourself from associating the two characters. They are, as you know, played by the same actress. That automatically gets her good will.

Clara is a wonderful companion. She was like Amy before Amy became inconsistent. (Which is odd, considering how everyone else remained true to form throughout Series 5, 6 and 7.) She’s like River Song, back when we first met her in Silence in the Library. She’s–she’s the perfect companion. We’re getting the perfect companion again. Someone who gives as good as she gets.

But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

Her tenure as the latest partner in crime of the Doctor has just begun. I hope they don’t mess her up.

Going back to the episode though, the story doesn’t favor Steven Moffat’s usual timey-wimey twists and turns. Nor does it feature Moffat’s usual happily-ever-after endings for Christmas Specials.

The Snowmen definitely marks the beginning of a new era in Doctor Who.

6 thoughts on “Television: Doctor Who and the Snowmen

  1. I absolutely agree! It’s hard to explain why a good episode is good (and it has nothing to do with logic or the quality of the bad guy), but the magic is definitely back!

  2. Pingback: Television: Doctor Who and the Bells of St. John | taking a break

  3. Pingback: Television: Doctor Who and Hide | taking a break

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