Doctor Who Review: The Big Bang

The end of the series seems to have come a lot more quickly this time – or is it just me?

Cast and Crew

Matt Smith as the Doctor
Karen Gillan as Amy Pond
Alex Kingston as River Song
Arthur Darvill as Rory
Caitlin Blackwood as Amelia
Susan Vidler as Aunt Sharon
Frances Ashman as Christine
Barnaby Edwards as Stone Dalek
William Pretsell as Dave
Halcro Johnston as Mr Pond
Karen Westwood as Tabetha
Nicholas Briggs as Dalek Voice

Written by Steven Moffat

Produced by Peter Bennett

Directed by Toby Haynes

Originally aired on the 26th of June 2010 on BBC One/BBC HD in the United Kingdom.

Premise

Previously on Doctor Who, the universe ended, but the Earth still seems to be there, and somebody’s been reading The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

High Points

  • The Pandorica opens… again.
  • This means goodbye.
  • Unanswered questions!

Low Points

  • You can extrapolate the entire universe from a small piece of fairy cake the Pandorica?

The Scores

Originality: Recreating the entire universe! I suppose it’s original if you’ve not read about the Total Perspective Vortex. Perhaps Mr Moffatt is a fan? I actually don’t really mind that much. It’s not like Doctor Who is known for its science. Five out of six.

Effects: Bright lights, stone Daleks and a gorgeous explosion. Five out of six.

Story: It’s more of an exploitation than an explanation. We still don’t know all the answers, and I like that a lot. The whole story is driven by a fantastic sense of time pressure, because there really is a limited amount of time left – the remaining lifetime of the universe. Six out of six.

Acting: Very good from the principles, but it felt like some of the guest cast were playing cookie-cutter roles. Five out of six.

Emotional response: A triumphant feeling, and a bright future. That tear in my eye is from the hayfever though. Four out of six.

Production: The museum was superb, particularly the presentation on the Centurion. Somebody’s really thought about how history is different when there’s no universe. Five out of six.

Overall: Last week left me with misgivings. This week I’m glad that they didn’t come to pass, and I loved not only the resolution of this series but the leaving open of doors for the next. Six out of six.

The Big Bang receives a grand total of thirty-six out of forty-two.

15 replies on “Doctor Who Review: The Big Bang”

  1. TwistyHat says:

    Its just you.

  2. TheYellowLantern says:

    I haven’t seen this yet. How’d Sheldon do against the Doctor? And does anyone really think Penny will make a good companion?

  3. Jethro says:

    I liked this season a lot. I wasn’t sure about it at first, but there were a lot of layers. Once we had the second Doctor in the angel episode, that was kinda it.

    I also didn’t like the ‘new’ theme music, but it kinda grew on me. Kinda imparted a greater sense of urgency to the whole show.

    I’m glad Amy and Rory get to come with for the next season (or at least till Christmas).

  4. I was very impressed. The show answered a lot of what happened, but still didn’t answer anything, and I love the fact that we have those questions. The folks from Lost could have learned a lot from this episode. Or BSG.

    I have to agree that the science was… well, it wasn’t. It was a memory that allows things to come back into reality?

    Lets just pretend nobody’s ever heard of a ‘paradox’, because if so, then you’re brain might explode.

    • vandemar says:

      Actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint – it’s more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly, timey wimey, stuff.

  5. Also: Am I the only one who thought Rory seems like a poor-man’s Wash?

  6. Kiersten says:

    Actually, Douglas Adams used to write for Doctor Who…..

  7. Kiersten says:

    So, how old IS Rory and Amy now?
    Since Rory remembers being plastic..
    “I was plastic” ….
    This makes Rory older than the Doctor!!!
    I don’t know if Amy’s stasis would age her or not..

    Any thoughts?
    *hugs*
    k

    • J_W_W says:

      I’d say Rory is older than the Doctor, but what’s interesting is that he’s not still plastic. But I thought that was cool. But Amy was is stasis until Amelia touched the Pandoricum. I really loved how Rory stayed with her for 2000 years, that was great.

      This was a great finale. It was wonderful to finally have a final episode that really hits the mark instead of an everything almost blows up only to be averted by the last minute by the Doctor.

      Plus, saving the reveal of the villain for next season was great, as you said in the review, other shows could learn a lot from what Moffat did in this episode.

      I do hope that paradoxes don’t become a common occurrence. I’ll let the paradoxes pass this time because of the way the episode was put together, but they’re a tool you can only reach for on a very limited basis.

      • The accompanying Doctor Who Confidential mentioned that with the Universe ending, and The Doctor working with a limited time frame, he decided he can break some of his own rules. In otherwords, what did it hurt if he created some paradoxes, it’s not like the Universe would end more.

        Also, they mentioned that Season/Series Six/Thirty-Two was going to be about The Silence, and that we’d find out about River Song.

        I doubt that it’d be the case, but wouldn’t it be neat if River was Romana?

        • joe__gee says:

          That’s exactly who River reminds me of … :) And Romana was just about my favorite of the Doctor’s assistants. Well, I was also quite fond of Leela, but Romana was a class of her own. :)

          -Joe

  8. TomSwiss says:

    It was a memory that allows things to come back into reality?

    There are actually some theories about the universe being holographic. (And some evidence about this comes from *Cardiff* University researchers, seriously:
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203130708.htm ;clearly the Torchwood rift is involved. ) One attribute of a hologram is that a part, in a loose sense, implies the whole.

    And then you’ve got quantum entanglement, where in a sense any two particles that have interacted once sort of “know” about each other.

    So it’s not completely woo-woo — certainly not by Doctor Who standards! — to have information stored in the matter of the Pandorica, or Amy’s brain, be able to bring stuff back/

    Lets just pretend nobody’s ever heard of a ‘paradox’, because if so, then you’re brain might explode.

    When the world is running down, paradoxes don’t much matter. Normally, cross your own time stream and Bad Things Happen, as we’ve seen previously, but when it’s about to be the case that the universe will have never have existed at all, well, what the heck.

  9. rsilvetz2 says:

    The high points for me were:

    (a) River Song terrifying a Dalek before killing it. Oh yeah baby! A killer companion if you pardon the pun.

    (b) “… and you’re late for my wedding!” With the Tardis showing up, all pretty and blue.

    (c) I checked the back episodes. There are 3 floors inside Amy’s house, if you judge by the stairs, proto-tardis anyone?

    (d) We’re still short one villain. Other than Omega, we don’t have any villain short of the Master with the capacity to pull of a Tardis hijack.

    (e) Oh — one more thing. Loved the “Hello. I’m Amy’s Imaginary Friend and I came anyway!”

    And what is it with Brits? If a Tardis materialized in the middle of a wedding reception I would be strongly torn between running at the Blue Box or running away (given how much trouble the Doctor ends up in!).

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