With one more episode left, we find the Doctor has returned to earth to visit an old friend…Craig Owens from “The Lodger”. Last we saw Craig, the Doctor had rented a room out of his flat in order to figure out why his ship was stuck back in series 5. Now, a few years later, Craig and Sophie are still together, in a new home, and with a new baby boy, Alphie, self known as Stormageddon, Dark Lord of All.
It was a fun episode which is the lead up to the season finale next week. After leaving Rory and Amy behind to start their lives again, the Doctor leaves to travel on his own, and make a final farewell tour as it were, and decides to drop in on Craig one more time to say hello. Craig, on the other hand, doesn’t particularly want to have any part of it and is already stressed from having to manage the baby on his own or the first time.
There is a lot of great chemistry between the Doctor and Craig (comedian James Corden) with plenty of silly talk of their being “partners.” All in good jest, I did think it was a good funny tease. Craig is the bumbling reluctant hero of the story with the Doctor guiding him on his quest to be a father.
Plaguing humanity this week is the reactivation of a long since crashed Cyberman ship, buried below a shopping center. With sinister little rats scurrying around collecting power, it’s up to Craig and the Doctor to stop them and prevent the next army of Cybermen from getting free.
The episode, with spots of action, was mostly a fun goofy story built to grow the Doctor’s character a little bit. In the beginning of the episode, he tried very hard to ignore all the signs he was seeing, such as the flickering lights. He doesn’t want to get involved, and he doesn’t want to put those that he calls his friends in danger.
But of course the Doctor cannot stay away from these types of feelings, and ends up getting a job in the shop nearby. As expected, we see the Doctor is fast at making friends among the staff, customers, and anyone else he happens by, which is handy in getting information and finding out what’s going on. Shop keeper Val (Lynda Baron) is especially fun when she mistakes the Doctor and Craig as “partners.”
In the end though, on the verge of defeat, the Doctor comes to realize that the reason he loves humans so much is that they never give up and will always try to overcome, and that he doesn’t lead people to their death, but rather inspires them to carry on.
It was a touching story and interaction, and I’m glad to see that these types of growth stories aren’t limited to just Amy and Rory.
- There were 7 different babies used during the shoot
- Lynda Baron, the actress who plays Val, was actually a doctor who veteran playing Captain Wrack in the old series episode “Enlightenment.” (1983)
- Alphie refers to himself as Stormageddon, Dark Lord of All, his dad as “Not-mum” and everyone else as “peasants.”
- Amy and Rory make a quick appearance, in their post wedding time just before they get their envelops from the Doctor. Apparently Amy is actually a model, complete with fans and a perfume line. “Petrichor – For the Girl who Got Tired of Waiting”
- The envelops are actually Sophie’s.
- Some of the best lines come from the “baby”
- Now we know for sure who was in the spacesuit, but the question is how do they make her fire?
- “Do they have off switches?” “Human beings? No, believe me I checked.”
- The previous Doctor also did a bit of a farewell tour before he regenerated, visiting Rose among other people.