I was A BIT NERVOUS about this ep not meeting my e'er so slight expectations what with some actors I think are great (Liam Cunningham and Tobias Menzies), a SUBMARINE, and beautiful old skool monsters.
- HELLO DAVID WARNER. YOU ARE IN THIS TOO, YAY. "Ultravox, I bloody love em." He should watch Ashes to Ashes. This really is a bloody good cast. It really helps lift what is a perfectly solid story to something a bit good.
- Cause it is a Troughton base-under-siege with all the what some sadly misinformed people might call boring bits cut out. For once, Gatiss' desire to write classic Who works for him, hurrah!
- I like that the Ice Warrior's found in ICE. Cause they're not really Ice Warriors, they're martians. And they were found in ice the first time. Hence the very clever name.
- Thumbs up for the sonic giving info on how to save the sub and the Doctor saying engineer-y skience-y things to help based on readings rather than using sonic as a bloody magic wand.
- Ooh, that claw smashing out of the ice is well cool. In fact, this whole thing looks excellent. From the claustrophobic, dripping water everywhere sub to the (saucer-y shaped!) martian spaceship. The claws (um, the *other* out of the suit claws) are...look, I like them, and I love the doing it on the cheap aspect of Ice Warrior out of his suit, but I can see why one might be judgey.
- Ah, and the Doctor is telling us all about Ice Warriors, yay, and it is all PERSON NOT MONSTER. Which was one of the things I very much wanted, even if some of the martian culture I am like "really?" at. BUT STILL. I do like the refs to law, cause I am all for finding out about alien legal systems even if the one thing we get is "crazily overreact to any hostile action". Like Minbari, except worse.
- BIOMECHANOID?! Is this some NA crap getting in my precious canon?
- "I don't even speak Russian." OH CLARA NO. But that was some good, quick, catching her up on stuff there. "*Are* they [speaking Russian]?" Yes *they're Russians*." I loled.
- I really can't get over just how good the Ice Warrior looks. And, even more so, that they've kept the original design, just given it a bit of a polish. I mean, you know why they did it with the Daleks. They're *iconic*. Their design hasn't changed much for fifty years and everyone in the country knows what a Dalek should look like. But Ice Warriors? They were only in a handful of stories, and the last of those was in the early seventies. They are one of the Big Who Monsters, yeah, but only to fans. And yet the design that was dreamed up some forty-five years ago was deemed good enough for modern telly, with no iconic status to prop it up. That's so cool. I should find out who came up with it really.
- And well-impressed with the CGI for what the face looks like. I HAVE WANTED TO KNOW SINCE I WAS VERY SMALL. And now I get to find out and I am not disappointed, yay!
- Oh, Clara and her reaction to dead bodies and her being afraid and stuff. WAS THERE A HUG? I think there was one but I've forgotten and am not sure.
- Thank goodness no Scottish Doctors got that bit at the climax with the angry!Doctor stuff. Liked how Smith played it less as "fear my epic Time Lord-ness" and more as a last desperate bluff. Unimpressed at blatant Happiness Patrol rip-off.
- WELL-IMPRESSED AT HADS. I CALLED IT TOO, YAY. Ahem. Krotons ref for teh win!
- Matt Smith makes EXCELLENT FACES in this.
- I like Skaldak's hesitiation in killing either Clara or the Prof. I like that you get the sense he wants to be merciful, but he's really angry and pissed off and trapped and alone and confused, and can't see a way forward for himself...or maybe I'm reading kind of a lot into his immobile face. But the Prof, even though he shot at Skaldak isn't a soldier, and neither's Clara, and there's the "reminding him of his daughter" aspect which I gave LOTS OF POINTS to Skaldak for cause, heh, Clara might be female, but she's also a mammalian alien, and that's gotta take some empathy on his part.
- I do wonder how the martians are going to react about getting one of their greatest heroes back 5000 years later. Also, I tots want an ep in the future with some human and martian teamness as, I don't know, they go explore some stuff together or something.
I am a bit distressed that pseudo-historicals can now be set the year before I was born.
- In conclusion, good stuff, I enjoyed. RLY WANT MORE ICE WARRIORS PLS. And definitely my favourite Gatiss episode.