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TV Review: Doctor Who 11.2 “The Ghost Monument”
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who 11.2 The Ghost Monument BBC

Doctor Who
Season 11, Episode 2 “The Ghost Monument”
Directed by Mark Tonderai
Written by Chris Chibnall
Starring Jodie Whittaker, Brady Walsh, Tosin Cole, Mandip Gill, Susan Lynch, Shaun Epzo
BBC America
Air date: October 14, 2018

And now, it continues. The Season 11 premiere of Doctor Who left the Doctor and her new companions floating in empty space. It was both a great visual and a cliffhanger with huge jeopardy. It was so huge in fact, that writers have to resort to some pretty significant gesticulation to hand wave it away. As Douglas Adams wrote in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the chances of being picked up in space by a passing spaceship in the 30 seconds that you can hold a lungful of air are 2^2079460347:1 against. Adams rationalized those odds to some comedic effect using a spaceship with Infinite Improbability Drive. So how does writer Chris Chibnall dig himself out of that hole? We find out in the follow-up episode, 11.2 “The Ghost Monument.”

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TV Review: Doctor Who 2017 Christmas Special
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who 2017 Christmas Special Twice Upon A Time

Doctor Who
2017 Christmas Special “Twice Upon A Time”
Directed by Rachel Talalay
Written by Steven Moffat
Starring Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Jenna Coleman, David Bradley, Mark Gatiss
BBC America
Air date: December 25, 2017

A long time ago, in a place not far, far away, it ends. The TARDIS arrives in a snowy landscape, an aged and fading First Incarnation of the Doctor leads his companions Ben and Polly out onto the Antarctic landscape in 1986 where the Doctor first encounters the Cybermen from the planet Mondas. After being taken prisoner aboard a Cyberman ship, the Doctor looks weak and confused. He insists on returning to the TARDIS. He tells his companions to “keep warm” and heads out into the snowy cold. Then, a voice is heard and a figure appears. It is the Doctor in his Thirteenth Incarnation!

With “Twice Upon A Time,” two eras end in Doctor Who: the tenure of Peter Capaldi as the Doctor and that of Steven Moffat as executive producer and showrunner.

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TV Review: Doctor Who 10.7 “The Pyramid At The End Of The World”
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who 10.7 The Pyramid At The End Of The World BBC

Doctor Who
Season 10, Episode 7 “The Pyramid at the End of the World”
Directed by Daniel Nettheim
Written by Steven Moffat and Peter Harness
Starring Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Matt Lucas, Togo Igawa
BBC America
Air date: May 27, 2017

This week on Doctor Who, the Doctor continues his adventure in the world of the occult conspiracy thriller. An Egyptian-style pyramid appears in the middle of a hot zone in Central Asia. The Doctor and Bill are summoned to investigate. The Doctor is still blind, and has not yet told Bill about it.

What do they find? What does it all mean? The episode pulls together some interesting literary symbols and ideas in order to create jeopardy, but it falls apart a bit at the last minute. To find out why, read on…

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TV Review: Doctor Who 10.6 “Extremis”
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who 10.6 Extremis BBC

Doctor Who
Season 10, Episode 6 “Extremis”
Directed by Charles Palmer
Written by Steven Moffat
Starring Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Matt Lucas, Michelle Gomez
BBC America
Air date: May 20, 2017

According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the term in extremis means in extreme circumstances; especially: at the point of death. After the horror and jeopardy of “Oxygen” last week, what does that mean for Doctor Who? It cannot mean the Doctor, can it? Given a fifty year history of the Doctor’s survival, that seems highly unlikely.

No, what we get with this week’s episode, “Extremis,” is part Dan Brown and part the Wachowskis as something new menaces Earth. We also learn a lot about the mysterious vault, and this season’s long story arc. Our twelve episode journey for the year is now half over. Let’s see what it is all about.

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TV Review: Doctor Who 10.1 “The Pilot”
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Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  
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Doctor Who 10.1 The Pilot BBC

Doctor Who
Season 10, Episode 1 “The Pilot”
Directed by Lawrence Gough
Written by Steven Moffat
Starring Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Matt Lucas, Stephanie Hyam
BBC America
Air date: April 15, 2017

At last, at last, Doctor Who returns to the airwaves regularly for the first time since December 2015! The long wait is over. We finally get to see Peter Capaldi kick off his last season playing the Doctor. We also start to find out what Steven Moffat has in store for his sixth and final tour through the Doctor Who universe. To top it off, we are introduced to new companion Bill Potts, played by Pearl Mackie. The result is fairly wonderful introduction to a textured new companion, told with a grace and charm that highlights the strengths of the show.

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