Doctor Who
The End Of The World

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A | 3 USERS: A+
This Is My Happening And It Freaks Me Out

Finally, with much pomp and circumstance and silliness, the Steward hushes the assembled "Ladies and Gentlemen...Trees...and Multiforms," with a little speech for the last guest: "Consider the Earth below. In memory of this dying world, we call forth The Last Human." The Doctor checks out Rose's reaction as the doors admit a stretched-taut sheet of human skin with eyes, a mouth and a beauty mark in the exact center, and lots of lipstick. And thus, I checked out of the episode entirely. So lazy. She has this obsession with money and with being "thin," and it's made her monstrous. That's very astute and fresh, isn't it? But the real kicker is the voice. Did you ever see The Last Unicorn, with Mia Farrow and Jeff Daniels? There's a part early on where the wizard turns this tree into a woman by accident, and she has this annoying way of speaking, like a drugged-out old prostitute, and everything she says takes ten times too long, and she irritated me when I saw the movie the first time, in the theatre. This thing is worse, because she also repeats everything in this fusty, whiny way, and it's so, so irritating, and I get that she's a bad person and that she's supposed to be irritating, but the trick of art would be to make her just irritating enough without crossing the line into actively hating life when she is onscreen. "The Lady Cassandra O'Brien Dot Delta Seventeen." The Doctor laughs at her as she goes on and on and on about how "thin" she is and how she just had her chin taken off and she's so "dainty" and she doesn't "look a day over two thousand" and "moisturize me, moisturize me." And the joke, it takes one second to get, and it's a stupid joke anyway: that she's the ad absurdum of Hollywood looks-obsessed whatever. Or rather, the ad absurdum of what that idea looked like ten years ago, with the emphasis on thinness and having things removed, instead of having her be bright orange with Botox lips and a dead browline. Sometimes Queer As Folk was like this, too, though -- jokes about things that were funny years and years ago. Like joking about the Spice Girls as a group, rather than individuals. I suppose it's rather comforting, like an anachronistic Boy George joke from your grandfather, but it's also unsettling in the middle of this episode's glories, like...well, I guess like a Boy George joke from Grandpa would be unsettling too. In any case, this is when I originally declared the episode "a bunch of BS," which really just translates to "I expect better," which in turn is a compliment of sorts, I think.

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Doctor Who




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