TV Review: Doctor Who 11.2 “The Ghost Monument”

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 11.1 “The Woman Who Fell To Earth”

Doctor Who
Season 11, Episode 1 “The Woman Who Fell To Earth”
Directed by Jamie Childs
Written by Chris Chibnall
Starring Jodie Whittaker, Brady Walsh, Tonsin Cole, Mandip Gill, Sharon D. Clarke, Samuel Oatley
BBC America
Air date: October 7, 2018

At last, it begins. After many long months of waiting since Peter Capaldi regenerated, the Jodie Whittaker/Chris Chibnall version of Doctor Who has begun with Episode 11.1 “The Woman Who Fell To Earth.” This season will be shorter than the last few (ten episodes instead of twelve, plus Christmas special), but honestly, it’s all worth it if they’re at least as good as this first one. Steven Moffat is a good television writer and a decent producer, but his plotting and pacing can feel terrifically dense. It’s like eating champagne and caviar all the time and you just want a well-made pizza. This show is that simpler but no less satisfying meal and it sketches out a new course for Doctor Who that could be a very pleasurable ride.

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