The Rings Of Akhaten
First Aired BBC1 18:15 6th April 2013
Writer: Neil Cross
Director: Farren Blackburn
The Doctor: Matt Smith
Clara Oswald: Jenna-Louise Coleman
Merry: Emilia Jones
This episode is written by Neil Cross, creator of BBC1 police drama Luther starring Idris Elba, who would be a great Who villain or Time Lord. The 3rd season of Luther is due on BBC1 in September 2013, the director of this episode has directed an episode of that season.
Spoilers are below. I think they are fairly light, I don’t give away the actual plot, but I’d advise watching the episode first if you don’t like spoilers.
So now we know what secret was behind the leaf in Clara’s book last episode, she referred to it as her ‘first’ page. Not sure if anyone else felt it but the ‘Leaf speech’ seemed to be channeling Prof Brian Cox. So that is one mystery put to bed. But who is she, or perhaps ‘how is she?’
Given the choice to go anywhere, anywhen Clara clearly can’t settle on one thing. Now some of us would instantly answer, but for Clara it isn’t indecision from lack of knowledge, I think it is due to how many answers there are in her head. So she gives the Doctor the choice by saying she wants to see ‘Something Awesome’. Her ‘like to see’ lines do sound very like the Doctor’s style of thinking about what he has seen, such as in 11th Hour when he realises he saw Rory using his phone when everyone else was looking up.
Clara’s first journey to another part of Space. I expected to see a few faces of neutral races in this episode, I must admit that the only one I spotted was a Hath, I assume I missed something from either Dr Who, Torchwood or SJA. I understand though that many of these were spare heads worked on ‘just in case’ crowd scenes were required.
We see another world’s religion, that is all but dismissed by the Doctor. Though there certainly seemed to be something real in the way they used sentimental value stored in objects as currency. Religion has often popped up right back to the first Doctor with stories like The Aztecs. In this we see a pyramid, no connection to Aztecs or Egyptians here though.
No further mystery added to the Clara/Oswin arc. The doctor and Clara share the fact they have lost things. What else might they share?
Performances are good, especially young Emelia Jones. The script was better than last week I think, a nice quote from Lewis Carroll keeping things in step with religion as a theme.
Next Episode: Cold War
An old favourite of mine is back and from images I’ve seen they look good.
Previous Episode: The Bells of St John