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The End of Time

December 27, 2009

On Christmas Day in the UK, BBC broadcast part one of “The End of Time.” The second part will be shown on New Year’s day and it represents the last episode of David Tennant’s tenure as the lead in Doctor Who. It’s also the last episode written by Russell Davies, who was the driving force in resurrecting the show. I, living in the States, downloaded the show through the magic of the internet and watched it this evening with my wife. Here’s my question:

What the heck was that? (Caution… spoilers)

Loved Timothy Dalton as the Time Lord. Loved the scenes with Tennant and Cribbins. (Although, the conversation in the diner wouldn’t have made much sense if you didn’t know the back story. But I quibble.)

But what THE HECK was that?

A cult of women following a recipe in “Book of Saxon” try to resurrect the Master. Really? Ok, let’s say I buy it, which I didn’t. To make it work they needed his bio-imprint (which I assume was his DNA). Where did they get this sample? By wiping the lips of his ex-wife with a hanky. Seriously? How longs the guy been dead? A couple of years? And she hasn’t washed her face in all that time? And they extract it from her with a hanky. Really? Lipstick wasn’t going to cause any problems? Her own DNA wasn’t going to screw it up? (Ohh… John Simms with breasts.) It didn’t look like there was any real tech involved in the ceremony. They just dropped the hanky into a pot and poured in some liquids from a few vials. When did Doctor Who go all “Charmed”? How about an attempt at an explanation that would make me want to suspend my disbelief?

So, The Master, not actually resurrected but in spirit form in a magical column of light, decides to engage in a conversation with his ex-wife. (Huh?) And the ex-wife, expecting this entire sequence of events, throws a potion of her own at the Master in the light, blowing everything up. (WTF?) The Master, in turn, comes back as character out of the X-men – shooting lighting bolts out of his hands, eating anything alive (anything) and showing us his skeleton through his skin when he gets grumpy. Really? This is the best Davies could come up with?

Having completely left the realm of interesting sci-fi, done away with any shred of plausibility, what is Davies’ grand plan? He’s going to to have the Master borrow the “Gate of Immortality” from the latest idiot British PM and turn every human on the planet into an exact duplicate of himself. This has now entered the realm of sheer STUPIDITY. Actually, I should have guessed this was going to be ridiculous when Obama kept getting plugs as the savior of the global economy…

You could have kept the bit about the Ood, Cribbins and the Time Lords, deleted everything about the Master (an Obama) and had a decent intro to a good 90 minute show. I even liked the close up of Dalton’s spittle during his speech. I look forward to the obvious comparison of the Time Lords to the Daleks (anyone else think the room full of Time Lords on floating platforms looked a lot like the Daleks in their ships?)

Using past finales as a benchmark, I expected a great opening episode, a good second one and a lame ending. For example, Utopia/Sound of Drums were awesome. The resolution in Last of the Time Lords, ehh. Turn Left/Stolen Earth… great. Using the TARDIS to drag the Earth across space in Journey’s End… not so much. But this… this was just BAD. Here’s hoping part 2 is a major improvement. Otherwise, I wish Tennant’s Doctor had regenerated in Stolen Earth. This is an awful way to close out the run of one of the best Doctors.

OH MY GOD… WHAT WAS THAT????

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