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2.03 School Reunion

Now that's more like it! After the disappointment that was Tooth and Claw last week, School Reunion's done a lot to restore my faith and enjoyment of the series. I don't know what's going to come next, except for what I saw of next week's preview of course, but I think episode 2.03 will remain one of my favourites this year.


I wasn't sure, when I first heard that Elisabeth Sladen would reprise her role as Sarah Jane Smith, and that K-9 would be returning to the Doctor's side as well, if this wouldn't result in the ultimate cheese, but no -- their return was handled brilliantly. I cried, cried I tell you, when K-9 sacrificed himself...and then cried again when he came back all shiny and new at the end. Never ever have I been so glad to hear the word 'Affirmative!' spoken in so affirmative and metallic-y a manner.

And for once, the story didn't seem rushed, and the plot didn't seem to be too full of dramatic twists and turns, nor did it seem to have any glaring plotholes in it -- and the acting was fantastic. ASH was absolutely brilliant guest starring as the evil Mr. Finch, and he seemed to be thoroughly enjoying himself, too. There was quite a lot of Uriah Heep and very little of Rupert Giles (unless it was his steely resolve and ruthlessness that came to the fore) about him, yet he was altogether believable and very, very sinister.

I loved the scenes between the Doctor and Sarah Jane - his excitement when they first meet, his response to her pain and recriminations, his pride in her achievements; it made him seem so human yet underlined the fact that he is, and always will be, the alien, the outsider, the lone wolf. Rose's jealousy and basic insecurity was also well delivered, and reminded me of Rose's reaction to Lynda-with-a-y in the previous series a bit. However, her relationship with the Doctor seems to have changed since then. Whatever they might have refused to call it, as far as I'm concerned there was a really deep, really close bond of love and trust between her and Nine, with a side order of UST coming from the both of them. With Ten however, I get the feeling that even though the bond is still there, the Doctor's feelings in particular are much less strong -- he seems to regard her more as a friend than as a significant other, while she still fancies the pants off of him. I could be totally wrong of course, but to me it seems as if he's purposely distancing himself from her a little more each week. And now, with allowing Mickey onto the TARDIS without consulting Rose, I don't know how that dynamic is going to work!


In short: I loved this episode, and will be glued to my television set for the next one on the strength of it.

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Comments

( 19 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
xwingace
May. 3rd, 2006 08:50 pm (UTC)
You *want* to miss the plot holes, because they're there, believe me. Not that it matters, because in this ep, it's the characters that count. :-)

XWA
gamiila
May. 3rd, 2006 08:57 pm (UTC)
they're there, believe me

I did say 'glaring' -- yes, I did notice there were some (I mean, what was the deal with those rats?), but they seemed unimportant because the rest, the acting and the action, was so good.
xwingace
May. 3rd, 2006 09:07 pm (UTC)
"Maybe those rats were food." :-)

I was actually talking more about the oil on the chips supposedly making *all* the kids smarter, but only one kid in class showing any signs of it.

Or what about the *open* vats of deadly oil being moved. Why not seal them during relocation, if the stuff's that dangerous (to Krillitanes)?

And how does anybody know that noise actually hurts the Krillitanes? They're shaped like bats, but that doesn't mean they have all the bat physiology.

I've watched this episode a lot this week; I could probably mention more. And it still doesn't matter, the ep's still brilliant. :-)

XWA
gamiila
May. 3rd, 2006 09:52 pm (UTC)
the oil on the chips supposedly making *all* the kids smarter, but only one kid in class showing any signs of it.

Only one kid (Milo) was shown answering questions, but Rose was affected by it as well, being able to calculate an impossible (from my POV) sum correctly (or so I assume); and the other teacher commented on how the other da, a 12-year old girl in his class could give him the exact measuments of the Trojan walls...in cubits -- so it obviously was something that went round the school. Also, Sarah Jane ostensibly got into the school to do an interview on the headmaster and how the changes he had wrought had helped turn the school results around in a mere 3 months. Therefore, the chips and their learning enhancing oil do not constitute any kind of plothole.

Nor does Kenny's switching on the siren seem all that much of a reach to me seeing as how even the Doctor goes around saying "they're bats!" Reaching that conclusion may have been a bit of a leap you and I might not have made on the scant evidence presented, but it worked and so - not a plothole in my book. ;-)

Solving the paradigm using just one school's kiddies' enhanced brains and imagination, or attempting to -- that seemed a bit weak to me though. Also, given the previous history of the Krillotanes (if that's how their name is spelled), what was their interest in obtaining those building blocks of the galaxy anyway? No longer satisfied with conquering alien worlds and assimilating the best bits into themselves, they want to just jump ahead? And what's all this tosh about becoming gods? Why try to enlist the Doctor in their scheme? What possible advantage can he give them? Esp. since Mr. Finch already seems to have sussed that even though he can be a bit of a renegade, he is a conservative at heart?

And yes, that thing with the oil being toxic to them -- that was a bit silly, wasn't it? Having said that, I wonder if Mr. Finch survived the blast, after the oil appeared to have missed him. Be wonderful if we could see him again...(oh ASH, how do I love thee, for thou art brilliant in every role that thou playest).
xwingace
May. 3rd, 2006 10:06 pm (UTC)
Well, yes, others were affected, but the kids in that classroom didn't look like they *could* have answered those first simple questions. And their reactions to Milo (that's the swot) were more surprised than contemptuous, as well.

For a race that's cherrypicking all the good things from the cultures they invade, it doesn't seem so much of a leap to want to crack that paradigm. Maybe they only found it on a world they conquered recently.

As for them asking the Doctor to join them, that might just be a way to get at him; maybe then kill him and take over the 'interesting' aspects of Time Lord physiology? Or maybe they really do want to profit from his extensive knowledge. Finch seems particularly eager to have a go at the Doctor's brain, at least. I doubt, had the Doctor accepted, that they would have let him handle the power directly. Finch seemed manipulative enough that he might have managed to gently steer the Doctor into doing as he (Finch) wanted.

Finch wasn't as affected by the oil because he *had* taken human form (because he liked it, apparently), then again, during one of the sfx scenes we do see him change (slightly offscreen, though) from a bat-form into human. All that doesn't quite work out either.

The less said about the deadly oil, the better. It would maybe have made more sense to just have K9 self destruct and take them all out in the explosion. (which seems to have happened anyway.)

XWA
gamiila
May. 3rd, 2006 10:22 pm (UTC)
And that's another thing -- how did the Doctor get back into the building and get whatever remained of K-9 at that stage out? I would imagine the place would have been cordonned off by police pretty darn quickly after the explosion happened, and the Doctor would have had to flash quite a bit of psychic paper to gain access to the disaster area.

Still, it's nice to know that he took that trouble, and all for Sarah Jane. See, he did love her after all, all those years ago. It wasn't just Romana.
And Rose is now starting to realise that she's not all that speshul anymore, too -- is this preparing the way for her to leave, then, do you think?
laura_isaac
May. 3rd, 2006 09:26 pm (UTC)
Nooooooooooo, I've not seen it yet *cries bitterly*
gamiila
May. 3rd, 2006 09:34 pm (UTC)
You haven't? How come? Will you have a chance to see it before Saturday comes around and the next one airs?

I hope so. It is so worth it!
laura_isaac
May. 3rd, 2006 09:37 pm (UTC)
Up at uni, no telly... not going to be seeing this weeks either, nor next. Although I'm not really as sad as I was missing Chris' tbh, I'm not a fan of DT
gamiila
May. 3rd, 2006 09:55 pm (UTC)
And you're not in a position to download the episodes either, I take it...that's tough.

But not as tough, I agree, as missing all Chris's adventures -- DT, for all the splendid work he's doing on the show, still doesn't come closeto touching Chris's Dotor (IMO).
laura_isaac
May. 3rd, 2006 09:59 pm (UTC)
No, no downloads :(

I agree about DT, the show is just a little too cheesy for me atm. I loved Chris' Doctor, he brought a whole new spin to it that I loved so much. I miss him, it seems like everyone has forgotten him in the DT love... I don't see the attraction to him personally, I much prefer Chris

Icon!love BTW!
gamiila
May. 3rd, 2006 10:12 pm (UTC)
Icon!love BTW!

Ah! That's one of the many wonderful Chris-as-Nine icons my mate halliggye did last year,and one I just can't seem to retire. ;-)

I don't begrudge people their DT love, though personally, I prefer Chris as well -- you're definitely not alone in that. I can't help getting a bit indignant over RTD's references in teh script to his 'daft old face', his 'pokey out ears' and following these up with words like 'foxy' to describe Ten, and implying that Rose prefers the way the Doctor looks now to the way he did before. Because Series 1 Rose never did come across as that shallow to me -- though she is starting to grate on my nerves somewhat in this series.
tori_x
May. 4th, 2006 09:40 am (UTC)
I fell asleep during it I'm gutted!!!!
gamiila
May. 4th, 2006 10:30 am (UTC)
Oh dear. I'd say come over and watch it at mine, but...it is a long way to come, even for a DW episode! ;-)
tori_x
May. 4th, 2006 11:55 am (UTC)
Teehee maybe just a bit but it would be good fun! I blame packing for making me exhausted.
enigmaticblues
May. 4th, 2006 02:38 pm (UTC)
I've really been enjoying this season, but then again, I regard Doctor Who as my fun show that I don't take seriously. There are other shows that I analyze mercilessly, but I can't think all the time. No matter what my roommate tells you. *g*

I did like ASH in this last one, though. He was very creepy. And there does seem to be something changing in the Doctor's and Rose's relationship. I like 10, but I'm beginning to think I liked 9 better. I don't know...
gamiila
May. 4th, 2006 08:08 pm (UTC)
I regard Doctor Who as my fun show that I don't take seriously.

I agree: Doctor Who is best viewed without engaging the brain too much! ;-)

I like 10, but I'm beginning to think I liked 9 better.

Ten is fun, but Nine...Nine has stolen my heart, and I'll always prefer him to his successor.
anonypooh
May. 4th, 2006 02:41 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad you cried for the shooty dog thing too .. I was going to keep very quiet about that ;)!
gamiila
May. 4th, 2006 08:01 pm (UTC)
Of course I cried for the shooty dog thing! He was being so noble, so self-sacrificing, so man's best friend...RTd really is the most manipulative bastard! ;-)
( 19 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
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