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28 April 2010 @ 04:37 pm
2x01 Tooth and Claw  
2x02 – “Tooth and Claw”
Grade: C+

We are not amused.

Hm. I am not sure exactly how I feel about this episode. It doesn’t have QUITE the level of crack for me to love it purely for that sake, like I do New Earth. It doesn’t have a sense of fun and ridiculousness for me to love it in spite of a kind of lame plot. Queen Victoria and a werewolf! Ok. Whatever. It’s just not a super captivating or interesting plot. All it really is, is a bunch of people trapped in a manor house, running from a werewolf that wants to turn Queen Victoria into a werewolf too.

This episode has precisely two redeeming qualities. 1) NINJA MONKS. WAT? And 2) The Doctor and Rose being silly.

As to the first point. WAT? LMAO. They’re so ridiculous. NINJA MONKS. WTAF? IDEK. As you can see, they render me speechless and force me to talk in acronyms. They’re so just out of nowhere. That opening scene cracks me up. Unfortunately, ninja monks are no cat nuns and thus they can’t rescue the entire episode for me.

And now I’m pretty much going to spend the rest of the episode talking about the Doctor and Rose being adorable/silly/awesome in this episode because they’re the only thing that makes this episode a C+ and not like a C-.

A quick note on Rose: I like that we’re starting to see her as the leader and just awesome person that she really grows into throughout the series. When she’s chained up in the basement with the werewolf, away from the Doctor, she doesn’t freak out and panic. Nope. She rallies the other people down there to try and get free. She really is moving away from the “damsel in distress” box she found herself in a few too many times for my taste in series 1. This is why I really don’t understand why people complain about series 2 Rose being “too clingy” and not as awesome as series 1 Rose. I think she gets MORE awesome.

Now onto the Doctor and Rose. I love that the episode is framed by Rose and the Doctor going to a musical festival in the 1970s. I love that they’re just traveling around enjoying themselves and space and time.

Some people complain that the Doctor and Rose are having too much fun in this episode. But I disagree. The fact of the matter is, this isn’t really an out of the ordinary day for them. I mean, this isn’t a lark, but a werewolf? Not exactly a legion of Daleks. So I find the betting and joking to be funny and I think it makes the episode more bearable in spite of the laborious plot.

Like the following scene. I’m sorry, but it’s just funny. Rose is such a dork sometimes.

The Doctor: [held at gunpoint on the Scottish highlands] 1879. Same difference.
Reynolds: You will explain your presence, and the nakedness of this girl.
The Doctor: [Scottish accent] Are we in Scotland?
Reynolds: How can you be ignorant of that?
The Doctor: Oh, I'm dazed and confused. I've been chasing this wee naked child over hill and over dale. Isn't that right, you... tim'rous beastie?
Rose: [terrible Scottish accent] Och aye! I've been oot and aboot!
The Doctor: [normal voice] No, don't do that.
Rose: Hoots mon!
The Doctor: No, really don't. *Really*.

I should also take this time to mention that I love that this episode gives David Tennant a chance to use his native Scottish accent.

Rose Tyler: [after meeting Queen Victoria] I wanted to hear her say, "We are not amused." Bet you five quid I can get her to say it.
The Doctor: Taking that bet would be an abuse of my responsibilities as a traveller in time.
Rose Tyler: Ten quid?
The Doctor: Done.

The looks on the Doctor and Rose’s faces are so amusing this episode too.

Queen Victoria: And please excuse the naked girl.
Rose Tyler: Sorry.
The Doctor: She's a feral child. I bought her for sixpence in old London Town. It's was her or the Elephant Man, so...
Rose Tyler: Thinks he's funny but I'm so not amused.

And then the second time Rose tries to get Queen Victoria to say “we are not amused” results in adorableness from the pair of them. I like how the Doctor goads her on and then acts all embarrassed.

And I know that some people think that it was inappropriate that Rose brought it up again when they were hiding in the library, but… eh. It doesn’t bother me. They were relatively safe. Rose wasn’t worried. She knew that the Doctor would find a way out of it. Plus, she DID apologize after Queen Victoria chastised her. And then at the end, Rose wins the bet! Haha. Only to be banished from Britain directly afterwards. Plus, I really think that that stupid bet and the other Doctor and Rose silliness is the only thing that keeps this episode from being awful.

Rose Tyler: [They are trapped in the library, but the werewolf has stopped attacking for the moment] Can I just say one thing?
The Doctor: What?
Rose Tyler: [Squeals excitedly] A werewolf!
The Doctor: [Just as excited] I know!
[They run to each other and hug. Then he pulls back to look over her]
The Doctor: Are you okay?
Rose Tyler: Yeah, I'm fine.

“Tooth and Claw” also gives us a bit more of Ten being “rude and not ginger”. And I like how Rose is like the long suffering girlfriend who has to remind him how to behave in polite society, but she does it with a sense of bemusement and affection.

The Doctor: [about the telescope] It's a bit rubbish. How many prisms has it got? Way too many... the magnification's gone right over the top, that's a stupid kind of -
[aside to ROSE]
The Doctor: - am I being rude again?
Rose Tyler: Yup.
The Doctor: But it's pretty! Very... pretty!

Sir Robert: Nevertheless, that creature won't give up, Doctor, and we still don't possess an actual weapon!
The Doctor: Oh, your dad got all the brains, didn't he?
Rose Tyler: Being rude again!
The Doctor: Good, I meant that one. You want weapons? We're in a library! Books! The best weapons in the world! This room's the greatest arsenal we could have - arm yourselves!

And to arm himself, the Doctor must put on his brainy specs!

There! Now he’s ready for battle!

Oh and of course, another saving grace of this episode is the Doctor licking the door. Lol. Ten.

And I suppose that I do also have to mention that I think the ~possibility of the royal family being werewolves is a bit hilarious, as are the Doctor and Rose howling like wolves as they leave.

Phew! I'm done! lol. Now I'm super excited to move on to "School Reunion" which I ADORE. I'm probably going to ramble for an eternity on that one.
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
(Anonymous) on April 29th, 2010 01:06 am (UTC)
This was the second or third episode I saw that had Rose in it. It is also when I started calling her the blonde cuddler and decided that she was stupid, though looking back I suppose it's possible that she's just really impolite. I wasn't terribly fond of Ten here either; giggling in the face of danger is one thing, but giggling when people are dying...
Her Eminence the Very Viscountessbreathingbooks on April 29th, 2010 01:07 am (UTC)
Me, obviously.
fauxkarenfauxkaren on April 29th, 2010 08:02 am (UTC)
I think NORMALLY I would be a bit wary of the fact that the Doctor and Rose are giggling and having a laugh when people have died would bother me... but this episode just doesn't have anything else to recommend itself to me, so I actually welcome their shenanigans as a distracting from the lameness of the plot.

And yes, I don't think Rose is being stupid here. I just think that she (and the Doctor) and being rude. They're kind of in their own little "lalalala! We're traveling and having a lark! We see scary and dangerous creatures every day!" world and aren't really thinking about how serious it is to other people.
Her Eminence the Very Viscountessbreathingbooks on April 29th, 2010 03:17 pm (UTC)
Fair enough *g*.

As for the stupid, I meant it in relation to how she acts in Victorian society. Obviously most modern people aren't going to fit in well, but she's rather gratingly horrible about it.
fauxkarenfauxkaren on April 29th, 2010 04:48 pm (UTC)
lol. I think it's more like she just doesn't care to try and fit in. I think she subscribes to the Doctor's philosophy as per The Shakespeare Code. Just act confident and no one will question you. I mean, in that episode, Martha isn't exactly making a huge effort to fit in either. Donna sort of does in The Unicorn and the Wasp (but not Fires of Pompeii), but I think that's more of a function is that it's just for funsies than actually trying to fit in.

Beyond that, I just think the show doesn't care about that. Back in the day the show was sort of an educational type show to show kids about different time periods, but the show moved past that. And now, that's just not the point. It's not really concerned with showing realistic dress and behaviors of the period. I mean, it doesn't go out of its way to be anachronistic, but historical accuracy is not a priority either. I was listening to a commentary about this episode where they talked about how after The Unquiet Dead, they made an decision to not have Rose in historically accurate costume because they didn't want the show to feel like a show that was about learning about a historical period.
Her Eminence the Very Viscountessbreathingbooks on April 29th, 2010 04:59 pm (UTC)
Martha isn't so deliberate about it though. Rose sort of smashes it in society's face (which is rude, especially since no greater justice is at stake) like lol whatever all that booky history stuff lolz. In certain interactions she's treating the people in that time period like those British guards that people go to make faces at - they're not real individuals worthy of trying to make an effort to understand, they're just a big joke that she can play off of for her private amusement.
fauxkarenfauxkaren on April 29th, 2010 05:04 pm (UTC)
I honestly don't get the impression at all. What makes you think that? The only thing she does that is really sticking out is the bet she makes with the Doctor (which he is totally part of and encourages). But she apologizes when Queen Victoria calls her on it. She's not making any particular effort to fit in, but she's not flaunting it in their faces either. And I think she DOES care about them as people. Her interaction with Flora shows that. I just don't think she's interested in studying them as a culture.
Her Eminence the Very Viscountessbreathingbooks on April 29th, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC)
It was the impression I got from seeing the episode half a year ago, so I'm afraid I can't quote specific bits, but I do remember thinking that even I knew better, and although I've read some Victorian fiction I'm no history scholar.

She cares about them once they've managed to engage personally with her. I don't think she has much interest at all in them as a culture!
fauxkarenfauxkaren on April 29th, 2010 05:28 pm (UTC)
haha. I'm sure Rose ~knows better too. I mean, she has been to the 1800s before. I just think that blending in wasn't her #1 priority.

Exactly. And I don't see anything rude or disrespectful about that.