Tuesday, 18 May 2010

The Blink Review: Amy’s Choice

The seventh episode of the series gets off to a great start, when the Doctor visits Amy and Rory in the picturesque village of Upper Leadworth, five years into the future and just as she is expecting to give birth to her first child. We learn that not much has changed in this time, except that Rory has bizarrely decided to grow a ponytail to impress the villagers.

After ruining Amy’s flower borders, the Doctor engages in a humorous conversation involving her ‘planet’ of a baby. Matt Smith excels in these comical moments, and times the line of ‘Are you pregnant?’ just perfectly. The technique of a companion saying something numerous times, and then the Doctor obliviously saying exactly the same thing afterwards, is very reminiscent of the Tom Baker era and the quirky conversations that he would have with his companions.

Simon Nye’s ingenious plot of two dream worlds inside familiar locations, and having a more simple design of alien meant that the story did not require many special effects, which it hugely benefited from. The alien race known as the Eknodines, who were living inside the bodies of the elderly villagers, were a particularly effective creation which are sure to frighten children of their grandparents.

The little CGI that there was in this episode, mainly the alien eyes that emerged from the elderly people, actually added to the intense scenes rather than spoiling them, as had been the case in previous episodes of the series. The other impressive effects included the Eknodines dissolving their victims into dust, and the ice-covered TARDIS which gleamed in the cold, blue lighting.

The highlight of the episode came when Rory had just been murdered by the Eknodines, and Amy realised that she could not carry on living without him. The scene where she is willing to sacrifice herself to save Rory, without even knowing which is the real world, is very emotional and opens up a whole new layer to the character of Amy Pond, which Karen Gillan portrays excellently.

The revelation of the Dream Lord being an evil side of the Doctor can liken him to the character of the Valeyard, from the epic 1986 story ‘The Trial of a Time Lord’. His character was also meant to be the darkest side of the Doctor, from between his twelfth and thirteenth incarnation, although the Dream Lord was said to be created by psychic pollen. However, is the Dream Lord really dead, or could he play a major part in the Doctor’s future?

Rating: 5/5 stars

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