The new Doctor Who, episode 8: “Father’s Day”

This was the worst episode of the new series of Doctor Who thus far. It starts with an interesting premise but is so dull and silly in its execution that the episode is just awful.

The premise sounds good at first blush. The Doctor’s companion, Rose, had her father die when she was just a young girl. She only knows him through pictures in her mother’s photo album and through her mom’s stories about him. Now that she knows the Doctor, Rose has a chance to go back in time and see her father’s death, and perhaps give him a moment of comfort as he’s dying. Instead, Rose saves her father’s life and unleashes events she could never have expected.

This basic plot could open the doors to all kinds of interesting storylines. Unfortunately all it leads to in this episode is for Rose, her father and mother, and a set of boring characters to sit around a church hoping for the Doctor to save them from the bizarre creatures created by this time paradox. The plot is dull, there is no sense of forward momentum in the story, and the CGI for the demons in this story is just rotten.

Of course, the core of the episode is supposed to be Rose and her dad finally meeting each other, and Rose having closure on his death. The problem is that that plotline doesn’t sound like a Doctor Who. I realize that this is supposed to be a Doctor Who for a new generation, but in this episode, at least, the character stuff felt like a bad TV drama. Unlike the wonderful "Aliens of London", where the character parts were a nice contrast to the rest of the story, here they are the main story. And I was bored to tears by them.

One bad episode out of eight isn’t too bad.


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