Review - Doctor Who - S07E10

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Sometimes we forget that for small children (and those of us that are still small children at heart) Doctor Who can be truly terrifying. Then an episode like “Hide” comes along to remind us of the terrible things that go bump in the night.

In “Hide” the Doctor (Matt Smith) takes Clara (Jenna-Louise Coleman) back to 1974 where Professor Alec Palmer (Dougray Scott) and his assistant, Emma Grayling (Jessica Raine) are trying to collect photo evidence of a ghost known as the Witch of the Well. Both the Doctor and Clara are skeptical but there’s a specter and cold spots and psychic empath Emma Grayling is sure there is someone there. There is also something incredibly creepy hidden in the shadows.

To gather evidence the Doctor goes on a trip through time. Take a photo on the same spot throughout earth’s life cycle – upsetting Clara with his ambivalence to the decaying earth. The Doctor realizes that it is not a ghost but a timer traveler named Hila Tukurian (Kemi-Bo Jacobs) who is stuck in a pocket dimension. The Doctor uses Emma’s psychic ability to cross into the pocket dimension, Hila makes it back but the doorway closes leaving the Doctor trapped.

Emma risks death to open the gateway again and Clara enlists the help of a rather reluctant TARDIS to drag the Doctor back to our reality. It’s happily ever after as Professor Palmer has finally admitted his feeling for Emma and it turns out Hila is actually one of their decedents. The Doctor is waxing lyrical about love and summing up the episodes lessons when he realizes that there was a second creature. This is not a horror story, it’s love story. The Doctor travels back to the pocket dimension one final time to pick up the creature and reunite him with his lover.

This episode was scary, I’m not ashamed that I was hiding behind the couch at one stage while watching. Doctor Who has always been good at tapping into those fundamental fears that have affected everyone at some stage and “Hide” is a perfect example of this. The suspense is masterfully done and perfectly intercut with Matt Smith’s brilliant physical comedy. The love story between Emma and Professor Palmer is a little forced but it fits with the overall theme of the episode so it’s easily forgiven.

Possibly the best part of the episode is the interaction between Clara and “Sexy” (also known as the TARDIS). Clara has hinted in previous episodes that the TARDIS doesn’t like her but until now it seemed like one-sided paranoia. I’ve made the secret of the fact that I have not warmed to Clara and I am still not in love with her but if we see more interaction between her and the TARDIS I might be converted.

Next week we see more of the TARDIS than we have ever seen before (here’s hoping for more Clara/TARDIS fun).

Review by Yvonne Popplewell

More of Yvonne’s works can be found at her blog.  


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