Sunday, April 24, 2011

Doctor? Doctor Who? Ep.1 Season 6: The Impossible Astronaut

Matt Smith (
(Reader be warned: some spoilers ahead)

-"I've been running. Faster than I've ever run, and I've been running my whole life. Now its time to stop."
--The Doctor, "The Impossible Astronaut"

The much anticipated, long-awaited moment finally arrived last night for those of us in the United States lucky enough to have BBC-America (or for those of us nerds not lucky enough to have quality cable television, someone was nice enough to make a torrent). The new season of Dr. Who aired with "The Impossible Astronaut". and other Who fan sites have been touting the return of The Doctor and his friends for the last few months. Our wait was not in vain. The first episode of season six is a shocker to say the least.

As a lately returning Dr. Who fan, there is little for me to relate regarding season five. This latest installment features the current incarnation of The Doctor (Matt Smith).  Amemlia--Amy--Pond (Karen Gillian) and her newly wed husband Rory Williams (Arthur Darvill) return alongside The Doctor's past and future lover, Dr. River Song (Alex Kingston, ER, Law and Order: SVU), a fellow time-traveler travelling in the opposite direction. The trio and The Doctor are out to solve an incomprehensible puzzle: how to save The Doctor from an inescapable death in 2011 while uncovering an even uglier truth in 1969. The outcome is astonishing and heart breaking.

"The Impossible Astronaut" starts out in classic Who style, featuring a very smarmy, naked Doctor under the skirts of some dame in Victorian England. The show ends in utter panic. As usual, the show had me asking more questions than providing me with answers, and my surprised and disgusted screams probably woke up my neighbors. The trio encounters former FBI Agent Canton Everette Delaware III and President Richard Nixon, who are trying to discover the whereabouts of a young child making strange, direct phone calls to the Oval Office about spacemen. The spacemen in question, appear (unsurprisingly, at least to me) in FBI uniforms. The spacemen possess an uncanny ability that will leave the viewer wanting to both start firing point blank into its disfigured head with a large caliber weapon, and run screaming in the opposite direction.

The appearance of the aliens and the involvement of an FBI agent can only further attract this squealing nerd. Those not interested in drawing X:File parallels will want to stay away, but even if well dressed aliens make your stomach turn, an unspeakable truth is revealed to The Doctor, and sets poor Amy on a path that she can neither comprehend, nor prevent. Such oddities as planetary underground tunnels will leave the viewer on their seat's edge, eagerly awaiting the moment when Amy must reveal what The Doctor cannot know...

As the episode progresses towards an unsavory end, "The Impossible Astronaut" can only confirm what this nerd already knows: They are here; They have been here for a long time.

The Doctor is a time lord of Gallifrey. He travels space and time with his loyal friends and his string of lovers, but can all of his cleverness stop the future?

Research into the subject shows that there is no legal way to view Dr. Who over traditional proxies. BBCA features the series on Dish Network Saturday night at 8:00 pm central time.

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