“Doctor Who The Snowmen” Delivers and Then Some
After a several month absence from our television screens, The Doctor returned Christmas Night for the annual Christmas Special which delivered everything that was promised, and even more after that. Both sides of the great debate on what character Jenna-Louise Coleman’s companion role would be were proven, to a point, right, and new things were revealed.
The big reveal, along with Coleman’s character, was the new opening for the show, and the new interior of the TARDIS. It not that unusual for a television show to change its opening when major cast members leave, the perfect case being each time the role of The Doctor has been regenerated. However, it is unusual for it to happen when a new companion is cast (except for changing the actors’ names, of course). However, this is also the beginning of the celebration of 50 years of “Doctor Who” which will climax on the actual 50th anniversary in November of 2013. Add all of that up, and change was in the air.
The theme music has a new arrangement, but you really have to know the previous one, and listen very hard to hear the differences. They are there, but if you didn’t know it was changed, you’d never know by hearing it. The opening is greatly improved with an all new look for the time vortex, the image of the Doctor has been returned to the opening for the first time since the show was relaunched. It is much more colorful, the title graphic greatly improved, and overall, it is a much more visual appealing and attention grabbing presentation.
One glimpse of the new TARDIS interior brought a sigh of relief to me. When I heard of the redesign, knowing of Steven Moffat’s previous changes which were all retro, I feared that we would get a far more primitive control room as some of the previous ones were. I was pleasantly surprised to see a combination of a new central control area that bore a great resemblance to the old ones, but still more modernized. The rest of the room looked like a ship’s control room should look. The Doctor’s remodeling job looks like it was a great success. I know I personally love it.
Now we get to the new companion. When Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman filmed their introduction to the minisode that aired on the BBC (and is available here, thanks to YouTube, it seemed they were denying that the companion would be the previous character she had played in the season’s first episode. Some believed that and some did not. Guess what? Moffat’s misinformation operation wins again as both sides were right and both were wrong. If you haven’t see the special yet, I won’t spoil it for you beyond that except to say this is looking like one wild ride of a story for the Spring 2013 episodes.
Now to the show itself. The episode saw a return to the show, of sorts, of an entity called The Great Intelligence, which was first seen during the time of the Second Doctor. At that time it was controlling an army of robotic Yeti, instead of the snowmen that it controlled in this episode. It was a good story, but not one of the best. What made this special cause people to sit up and take notice was the interaction between The Doctor (Matt Smith) and Clara (Jenna-Louise Coleman). Their timing of their lines was absolutely perfect, and it appears there is a true chemistry between them. What really got me was that Moffat lulled everyone to sleep, getting them to think the story was going in one direction, and then things happened that blew everything out of the water and changed the story completely. All it took was one sentence out of Clara’s mouth that left the Doctor in absolute shock. You’ll have to watch it to see what I’m talking about here.
The puzzle of Clara is going to be an ongoing adventure in the rest of Season 7 which premieres in April of 2013. Where will it lead the Doctor, and who or what is Clara (rest of name redacted to prevent spoilers)? I guess we will find out as the series progresses.