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Doomsday - the review

July 9th, 2006 (11:28 am)

So - the Tyler era of Doctor Who is over, and is ended more cleanly and finally than the nearest point of comparison, the UNIT years of the early 1970s. Much of the detail had been anticipated - since 'The Age of Steel' it's been possible that a union between Jackie and the alternative Pete was on the cards, and the build-up to their meeting - alt-Pete insisting that the Jackie of whom the Doctor tells is a dead man's wife, and the tense cutting back every so often to Jackie avoiding the Cybermen on the stairs leading to her capture, the destruction of the Cybermen by Pete, and that "Oh, come here..." which promises a happy ending. Throughout this scene I was concerned that a Cyberman or Dalek would turn up to delete/exterminate Pete and/or Jackie, a sign that I had really come to believe in these characters. I think that it was gervase_fen who first said, among the viewing party, that the absence of the Daleks and Cybermen from this scene, when it's been clear that both are infesting Torchwood Tower, makes it perhaps the only misstep in the episode, and it's a point conceded by Russell Davies in the commentary.

I had every confidence that the appearance of Daleks and Cybermen in the same episode would be carried off with panache, and I was not disappointed. There was never any doubt that the Daleks would reject the proposed alliance with the Cybermen, who in this version come across as almost naive, programmed with the conceits of their creator and unable, unlike the Daleks, to think outside a box designed by Lumic. The comment about the Daleks' inelegant appearance seemed otherwise too human a conceit for a Cyberman.

(to be continued!)