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Review of The Christmas Invasion (10th Doctor)

Posted by: Whochick

Review of The Christmas Invasion (10th Doctor)
The Christmas Invasion - Christmas Special 2005

Did you know that Sycorax is one of the moons of Uranus and a character mentioned in Shakespeare’s The Tempest? No? Well, now you do. The Christmas Invasion is the very first Doctor Who Christmas special of the new series. So, for demented Christmas music and all kinds of mayhem read the rest of this post.

Episode: The Christmas Invasion by Russell T. Davies
Rating (1 to 5): 3.8
Baddie: Robot Santas, A Killer Christmas Tree, and the Sycorax
Rose is trapped: On the Sycorax ship
The Doctor is trapped: in his head while he heals from the regeneration
The Doctor enjoys:Talking. Apart from that he’s not too sure.
The Doctor dislikes: Jackie talking too much. Not being Ginger. Second Chances?
Doctor-y Strangeness: He’s a bit rude these days. He tasted the blood in the control matrix.
Scary Stuff: The Sycorax whip. People standing too close to the edge of the roof.
Does someone local help out? Harriet Jones? Well, at least until she annoys The Doctor.
What we learn: The Doctor has two hearts (but we already knew that). Apparently Rose talks about traveling with the Doctor the whole time she is with Mickey. Rose has a cousin named Mo. Even when he is dead asleep, The Doctor hears Rose when she calls for help. Pilot fish swim alongside something bigger. Tea is the best thing for a neural implosion. UNIT has it’s own monitoring station. Harriet Jones’ autobiography has been banned by an act of Parliament. Martians look completely different from the Sycorax. The Doctor seems to be part of the TARDIS circuitry at this point, so if he is ill the language translation doesn’t work. Blood Control is a cheap bit of voodoo. Jackie, Rose and Mickey do not have A+ blood. Any memory of how to fly the TARDIS has been wiped out of Rose’s memory like it’s forbidden. You can’t hypnotize someone to death. The Doctor knows how to fight with a broadsword. If it is still within the first 15 hours of his regeneration cycle The Doctor can regenerate a cut off hand. The Doctor’s new hand is a fightin’ hand. Apparently The Doctor is now a “lucky” and “no second chances” man.
My Favorite Bits: The Doctor saying Merry Christmas then passing out. “Anything else he’s got two of?” “Yeah she just barges in and litters the place.” “I’m gonna get killed by a Christmas Tree.” Rose asking The Doctor to help her wakes him up. “-Harriet Jones, Prime Minister. -Yes, I know who you are.” “You can tell the President, and please use these exact words. He’s not my boss, and he’s certainly not turning this into a war.” “Did we ask about the Royal Family?” “Am I ginger?” “A great big threatening button…” “Don’t you think she looks tired?” The Wardrobe room! Song for Ten. The new Doctor has glasses…and is actually having Christmas dinner with Rose.

Observations and musings:

The Doctor turns into someone else, crashes the TARDIS, and then passes out leaving Rose on her own. Luckily, she’s not as helpless as she thinks she is. When she’s out shopping with Mickey she senses that something is off with the Santa band even before they attack. Then, knowing that they must be after The Doctor, she rushes back to the flat. She also knows that what they are seeing on the TV isn’t rocks before the Sycorax come in clearly. Rose is in mourning for *her* Doctor. The man who died and left this sleeping stranger in his place. This stranger who is asleep instead of off saving the world. And she ends up trying to save the world herself, proving that she has actually absorbed a great deal of information during her travels. Too bad it didn’t work. This is where we see Rose starting to be a bit more pro-active in her adventures.

The Doctor has just regenerated, and as we have seen with every regeneration after his first one, he has a bit of a problem with it. As a result he spends most of the episode in bed. He manages to land the TARDIS before he passes out, wakes up long enough to save everyone from the Christmas tree (after Rose calls to him for help), and finally wakes up properly just in time to keep Rose from dying on the Sycorax ship. And then he starts talking, and barely stops for the rest of series 2. Obviously The Doctor has encountered the Sycorax before. Bit of a Star Wars moment when he loses his hand, eh? And he loses his hand only 15 hours after he first regenerates. (No wonder Rose is so upset. It hasn’t even been a full day since The Doctor regenerated.) It’s interesting how The Doctor has changed in this new incarnation. On the one hand he has a sunnier disposition most of the time, and on the other hand he is harder and less flexible. He’s not kidding with the “no second chances” rule. I’m thinking that Harriet Jones stopped being Prime Minister after the health scare. The Doctor has power beyond mere physical strength it would seem. Oh, and Aliens? Don’t mess with the only home he has left. He tends to take that sort of thing personally.

So, Rose’s Mum is willing to just leave The Doctor when the killer Christmas Tree attacks. That’s nice of her. grr. Ah, Harriet Jones. She was so good at her job. So level headed. And then she has to go and fire on a retreating enemy. That still pains me. The lady who played the mother trying to get her children and husband back in the house was a very good actress. The Sycorax ship is very organic in shape. Hmm…the TARDIS is a bit like the Infinite Improbability Drive in that they both need tea? Well, there you go. The first full-length adventure with the 10th Doctor. New Earth is next.

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About the Author

Whochick is a huge Doctor Who fan. She loves the show so much that she not only co-authors a blog on the topic, but also a podcast that you should listen to. Whochick resides in California with her husband (the Shadow Architect), and occasionally refers to herself in the third person.

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