Several things have filled me with joy in recent days. Picking flowers after lectures like a bollocks Jane Austen character, wearing my hipster-vacumn-inducing pinstriped trousers that make me feel like a Sultan in public, eating crisps in bed. But none have filled me with more joy than Saturday’s episode of Doctor Who.
As I mentioned previously, these first few episodes are about establishing the role of the assistant. Rose was the Doctor’s moral compass, Donna was his mother figure, Amy was the girl who waited (to start acting), and Martha was….well, moderately attractive, I guess. And in The Rings of Unspellable, Clara set herself up as all of the above and more; Jenna Louise-Coleman (who I find myself falling further and further in love with every time she’s on screen) power-acted her way through being charmingly guileless, kick-arsingly ballsy, tenderly maternal and bloody gorgeous within the space of forty minutes. I am sold on her, and I like it.
There was a lot to recommend this episode- the wonderful prosthetics, the song that the plot hinged on, the special effects good enough wiping every memory of the Tardis pulling what was essentially a poo vaguely shaped like the Titanic through space- and all this was enough to negate the rather flimsy plot. But Matt Smit out acted- well, everyone on television, I’d wager. His climatic scene-facing off against a God who feasted on stories-featured one of the most jaw-droppingly audacious and powerful scenes I’ve scene on Doctor Who in years. It could easily have been cheesy or cheap or childish, but Matt Smith nailed it- and I mean, he nailed it. We’re so used to him being the kiddy, slapstick Doctor, but here he transformed completely, lines on his face standing out, replacing his mid-twenties charm with year upon year of bitterness and loss and betrayal. Backed by the breathtaking climax of the Murray Gold score, it really was a joy to behold.
Most excitingly, though-and this is purely speculation, but I’m calling it now- it looks like the Sea Devils might possibly be back next week. The fucking sea devils! Do you know how long I’ve waited? Those vaguely flatulent aquatic footsteps have haunted my nightmares for years. For years. Please, PLEASE. Either way, the twisted mind of the delicious Mark Gatiss spewed forth next week’s offerings, so I’ll be there with bells-and rings-on.