Doctor Who Commentary: Thoughts on the Cold War

Now that I’ve seen the Doctor Who episode called “The Cold War,” I have some observations. They are below the cut because SPOILERS, sweetie.

First I loved the pacing of this story. It was suspenseful and didn’t feel like the 40-odd minutes it really was. I liked coming into the middle of a Soviet submarine with little to no explanation, and that Clara and the Doctor were clearly trying to go to Las Vegas. I wonder why? My guess is it’s on Clara’s List.

When the Doctor is searched, they find his sonic screwdriver (of course), and a Barbie doll… for which he wants a receipt when they take it. Uhm, what? I don’t know if anyone knows what that’s about (at least, not on my quick Google search) but maybe it’s for later? I certainly didn’t find a prequel or minisode or anything referencing one… Maybe it’s just a gag. That happens. 

One of the things I really noticed about this episode was the long corridors with the steam and water dripping out of the walls; very reminiscent of the movie Alien in that regard, which is perfect given that the Ice Warrior is quite literally from Mars.

Speaking of Ice Warriors, it’s interesting that they’ve brought back such an old “monster” for the Doctor to face. I like that it’s not just an evil, monstrous character, but that he’s got his own perspective and that he shows compassion at the end. It’s nice to see a “bad guy” with complexity. I’m really enjoying all of the throw-back stuff they’re giving fans for this 50th anniversary year.

Clara showed a lot more pluck in this one, and I liked that she doubted herself and stopped to ask questions. I especially liked when she realized that she was speaking Russian. The last time a companion had that interesting of a language-reveal was Donna discovering Latin.

Overall it was a very good episode, and a nice interlude away from any potential over-arching plot (which I haven’t yet figured out anyway). I liked Clara a lot more in this episode than the last, and I’m really REALLY looking forward to next week– the preview looks really good.

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