Saturday, 27 August 2011

Doctor Who Review: Let's Kill Hitler

"Spoilers."              Also. Spoiler Warning.

Wow, this was quick wasn't it? One, Doctor Who being back, it really doesn't feel like that long since the last lot ended, and two, me putting up my review a few hours after the show was on tv. Now there's a reason for it being up this quick. And if you've seen the latest episode Let's Kill Hitler, then you'll understand. But I think it might be hard to put it into words.

Let me say one thing. I liked some of this. I liked the bit with Hitler, "Rory, put Hitler in the cupboard" has to be one of the best lines ever. I liked the bit in the Tardis while the Doctor's dying, funny and touching. I liked the bit where River and the Doctor have both expected each other's actions. And I liked the idea of the Justice Department and them being tiny inside a human sized machine, although it was woefully underused and it reminded me of Meet Dave of all things. Now we've got the good out of the way though...

The problem is it's a disappointment. Like every part. With the title Let's Kill Hitler you'd think they'd spend more than 5 minutes with him, but the only reason he's there is to get a reason to have the Justice Police there. And they're only there to provide exposition and to give a situation to have Amy and Rory in danger in. Really the majority of this episode could be set anywhere and could have been done with anything replacing the Justice Police or JP. And I liked the JP, I thought there were a good idea, but all they do is tell the Tardis crew what they need to know for the plot to work and then leave, leaving Amy and Rory to get chased by their "anti-bodies". Which were also a good idea. But again, they're just "a threat", I liked them, but they could have been replaced by literally anything and the story would have been the same. Also Mels. I had a problem with her before she was even revealed to be anything else. The introduction was awful, just by showing us a couple of flashbacks are we really supposed to accept she's been there the whole time? And for just Amy and Rory's friend she was far too ridiculous to accept as a real person. I'm not saying everyone in Dr Who should be realistic, but she was clearly going to be revealed as something more. Really though, would the Doctor when threatened with a gun and told to go back in time and change history... do it? Because that's what happens. The Doctor wasn't tricking Mels and going somewhere else, he was going to take her to Hitler's office. People have threatened the Doctor to do things like this before and he's either said no or tricked them. It seems somewhat out of character for him to get bullied by one girl with a gun.

And that one girl is the problem. Melody Pond, aka River Song. Because really. Is this how you expected the Doctor and River to first meet? I mean, I dont know how I expected it but it definately wasn't this. I don't say that in a good way. Some random girl, that I already didn't like gets shot and regenerates into River. Maybe if she hadn't only been in the story for about 5 minutes and was obviously a River Song type of character, so it wasn't even a surprise. Then she's a psycopath brainwashed to kill the Doctor. But we only find that out after she's done it, before that she just seems like she's nuts. And after that. You'd think they might do something with her being Amy and Rory's daughter, but they don't really, there's hardly anything to do with it, especially at the end where they seem to just give up looking for her and leave River, so they might not see their daughter ever again. River's apparently brainwashed, but all it takes is the Doctor showing he's a good guy for her to join his side, there was no kind of struggle, it didn't even seem like she was brainwashed at all, just nuts. Oh, River can regenerate so will there be any stories dealing how now there are two Timelords? No, she just uses up all her regenerations to save the Doctor so the audience can forgive her for killing him in the first place. And since when could regeneration stop you getting shot? Maybe that would've been helpful when in 1970's Spearhead From Space where the Doctor gets shot soon after regeneration and it knocks him out for hours. Also, the explanation of the Silence is given far too quickly and just replaces one mystery with an even stupider sounding one.

Really, this episode is a huge disappointment for all the questions being asked all series. Maybe I could have forgiven it slightly if the River Song story had been a subplot, and maybe... the Justice Police were going to kill Hitler but the Doctor has to stop them changing time, even though helping Hitler is against everything he stands for. Wait, I've just written a better idea than the plot of this episode. There's so much more I could say but I'll leav you with this. We've been waiting over a series to see River meet the Doctor, but this episode fails to deliver, and it doesn't have any other story to fall back on, so the flaws are painfully obvious and make a truly uninspired piece of television.

Although it does have Rory punching Hitler so I can't give it 1/5.



  1. Great summing up of the episode. I agree completely! Makes me worry that the payoff for the season finale will be equally lame.

  2. I just read this, and talked with my girlfriend about how much better an episode this would have been if the Doctor had to keep Hitler safe from multiple assassination attempts by the Future Police.

    It'd tear him up inside! He'd be yelling at Hitler and furious at himself, but keep pushing him out of the way when people were shooting lasers at him and stuff. Then, somewhere near the end, if we even HAD to have this subplot, Mels could be accidentally shot when the Doctor AGAIN yanks Hitler out of harm's way, then regenerate into the Killer River, who we could haunt the Doctor in other stories, like the Delgado Master used to do!

    He'd have a Moriarty, chasing him through time, and you'd never know when she'd strike! Could we have Evil River for maybe half a season at least? No? Great. Anyway, wonderful plot you came up with. Why the Hell didn't it occur to the Moff? :(

  3. "who could haunt..." (No edit button.)