We all know what to expect from series finales now, and Stolen Earth/Journey's End is another misguided attempt to top the previous years'. This time around, everything runs on nonsensoleum
, and I'm not just talking about the science for a change; character interactions, the plot's progression and the show's increasingly bizzare moral core are all powered by twisted, nonsensical Narnia-logic that locks the viewer out from the word go. Months of retroactive Fan Wank
are needed to even begin
to make sense of The Doctor's actions in this episode, and no-one else fares much better.
Like the other finales, it tries painfully hard to up the Holy Shit Quotient
to insane levels, but the problem is it may be epic but it's generic
epic; it tries to hit all the "awesome" notes in the most unchallenging, uninspired ways. It never elicits a gasp or a "Holy shit!", just indifferent groans and Olympic-grade facepalming (okay, I admit it was pretty funny when K-9 showed up out of nowhere, but probably not for the right reasons). If you look past the posturing and the overblown attempts at a Wham Episode
, there's just no reason to give a damn; certainly the plot is the biggest case Like You Would Really Do It
I've seen in a while and doesn't do anything to try and allay that.
To reclaim a little balance, it does have its good points; Julian Bleach is brilliant as Davros, and I dearly hope we get to see him reprise the role in a more watchable episode. Donna's "sendoff" is poigniant and well-written in total contrast to the painful, Narmtacular
way it was set up. Murray Gold's score delivers as always, although it's increasingly clear his best work on Doctor Who
was done by series 2.
It's all the usual suspects that are to blame; Protection From Editors
(in particular, it's clear that Dalek Caan went from the drawing board to the final draft without anyone to say, "Hey, maybe there's a better way to do this character than Multiple Miggs
Skaro-style!"), Running The Asylum
, Deus Ex Machina
, Russel T Davies
smells of wee, you know the score by now. My advice is watch the very end and the bits with Davros on You Tube
and just enjoy the pretence that the rest of the episode was that good.