Writer: Matthew Graham
Director: Euros Lyn
Producer: Phil Collinson
Series: 2, ep. 11
Companion: Rose Tyler (Billie Piper)
Summary: A child has been taken over by an alien being. The alien gives her the ability to trap anything she draws in the paper. And it is the eve of the 2012 Olympics. Can the Doctor stop her from drawing the whole world?
Review: When I first watched this episode, I did not agree with the general consensus that it was awful. I actually thought it was bad, but not awful (yes, there is a difference). I decided to research it for this review and rewatch. Now I understand why it’s so hated. While some of the effects are good (I have to admit, I still like the scenes of people trapped in the child’s drawings), the acting is bad, especially from the girl. And to top it off, when Matthew Graham learned what everyone thought, he responded “It wasn’t for you.” Even Russell T. Davies thought it was bad, and he was the producer!
“It wasn’t for you” to me sounds like Graham thought Doctor Who was “just a kids’ show.” I hate that criticism. When people say something is “just a kids’ show”, that means they’re dismissing children. “Oh, it’s for kids. They watch anything.” Children are much smarter than most people give them credit for. When I was a kid, I knew when I was watching garbage. I don’t think Doctor Who is “just a kids’ show”. I prefer to think of it as a family show, sort of the same thing I thought of Star Trek and most of its spin-offs. (I’d probably be a bit wary of letting a kid watch some episodes of Deep Space 9) To me, family show is better because both adults and children enjoy it. Adults enjoy it for pretty much the same reason kids do–it’s scary, but not too scary. And it has that wonderful mystery to it. That’s why I watched it as a kid when it was still on PBS, and continue to watch it as an adult.
Doctor Who is more than just a silly kids’ show. It’s one of the best science fiction shows ever made. Yes, it doesn’t always entertain, but even the worst episodes often still have something good about them. Except for this one. I consider this one almost on par with “Love and Monsters”. And like “Love and Monsters”, you can skip it and nothing will be missed.
Overall Review: 3/10
Continuity: The Doctor and Rose have actually been to the year 2012 in the previous season, where they met Adam Mitchell. The Doctor had a tingling sensation in his fingers in the presence of evil in “The War Machines”. He uses his psychic powers again in this episode, which were introduced in “The Sensorites”. He says that his encounter with the Sisters of Plentitude in “New Earth” are why he’s no longer a “cat person.”