TV REVIEW: Doctor Who Season 9 Episode 2 – ‘The Witch’s Familiar’

I’m going to review the episode this time, instead of recap it. Let’s see how this goes. Also, SPOILER WARNING!

The episode starts in the deserts of Skaro outside the Dalek base. Clara is hanging off a rock upside down, and Missy is telling a story about the Doctor escaping from androids, almost being killed in the process. She asks Clara how he always escapes, with Clara saying something along the lines of ‘he thinks he will.’

Now, that’s all done in a semi comedic fashion. So that sets me up thinking that the episode is going to be all funny and a good time, with a little bit of serious towards the end, which tends to be the whole story line in most episodes.

It’s not that the episode didn’t do the jumping from comedic to serious all that badly. The problem is that they jumped from Missy and Clara’s shennanigans, which was comedic, to the Doctor and Davros being serious upstairs. It’s hard to figure out whether the episode is trying to be funny or serious.

Saying that, the scenes between the Doctor and Davros was good. Davros knows that the thing that will be fatal to the Doctor is his compassion (which he states), and uses that to emotionally manipulates him to extend his life.

The lines are also really good. Whilst they’re still plotting against each other, they have a weird twisted form of respect and love for each other. You feel as if they’re admitting the truth, even though Davros does use it to take the Doctor’s regeneration power.

And the scenes featuring Missy and Clara were good, too. Michelle Gomez plays her part hilariously, and she plays around with Clara and her emotions skilfully.

The Dalek saying “mercy” was something I wasn’t expecting. I tend to pick up what will happen in each episode as certain things reveal themselves, however that wasn’t something I could predict.

The Daleks having mercy due to the Doctor’s actions has a weird irony to it. The Daleks would never have mercy to the Doctor, never ever. However, it’s the Doctor’s fault that they have it.

Now, now now now, they’ve replaced the sonic screwdriver, which is something that I love and is symbolic to Doctor Who for me, to “sonic sunglasses”, which is basically just a pair of sunglasses with sonic powers. Why? It’s so stupid. They can’t make it a piece of merchandise, because you could just get a pair of Oxleys and they would look the same, and it gives the Doctor a “dad trying to be cool” feel. I hope they bring back the screwdriver, because I’m gonna really miss it.

The cliffhanger that happened at the end of the first episode, which I expected would be for the sake of saving Clara (and mainly Missy), but instead to ensure that the Daleks learn compassion. Also, he refers to Davros as his ‘friend’, which was also unexpected.

Although I didn’t really know how to feel about the comedy and seriousness, the episode was generally quite nice. I liked it, and hopefully the other episodes will follow the same trend.

Give The Flak Rating: 7/10, Positive

-KT

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