I am just breezing right through this fifth season of Doctor Who, and I am beginning to have quite heretical thoughts about where it stands in the pantheon of the series. I’m still sick as I’m writing this post (and the fact that I ate some Cool Ranch Dorito’s has only made me sicker. I am, to put it politely, a dumbass sometimes) so it may not be especially involved because I just don’t want to spend a lot of time with my computer in my lap pushing against my upset stomach. Sorry all loyal readers (that means like 3 of you. I still don’t know how the hell the rest of my 250 views a day gets here), but we’ll have to wait til I’m better. I’ve actually been sick nearly the entire time that I’ve been here in NYC one way or the other. I’m sort of a sickly kid to begin with but this is getting sort of ridiculous. I have a friend in the city who is also from WV who tells me that she was sick for like the first six months she moved up here and that’s a common experience for all NY new-comers, and if that’s the case, I’m in for an unfortunate time (though my overall experience here has been so amazing that I’ll trade being sick here over being healthy in WV anyday). Anyways, back to Doctor Who!

The disc picks up mere seconds after the last one ended with the Doctor (and Amy, River, and the soldiers) surrounded by an army of Weeping Angels. The Doctor shot something on the spaceship which turned the anti-gravity back on and the crew were able to escape (even if ultimately, only the Doctor, River, and Amy survived the whole episode). Amy slowly starts to turn into an angel and the Doctor and Amy both realize that the crack from Amy’s wall (and every other episode of the season) has been showing up all over the universe. The Doctor uses the crack (which erases time itself) to defeat the Angels, but we know it won’t be the last we see of these cracks. After Amy tries to make the sexy time with the Doctor, the Doctor sets up Rory and Amy on a romantic date in 1580’s Venice, Italy, that quickly spirals out of control in classic Doctor fashion when it turns out that there are what appear to be vampires feeding on young women in the city. In the next episode, the Doctor, Rory, and Amy keep going back and forth between two different realities where they’re years in the future and Amy and Rory are married and Amy’s pregnant and then a reality where the TARDIS is dying and they’re slowly shuttling toward a “cold star” as a mysterious figure known as the Dream Lord tells them one reality is real and the other fake and they must die in the fake reality to ever wake up.

Like I said, I’m still a little on the sick side so I’m going to keep my assessments pretty short. “Flesh and Stone” was a marvelous way to end what began with “The Time of Angels,” and contained one of the best self-sacrifice moments of the series so far from the guy that plays Jorah Mormont on Game of Thrones as well as some truly genuinely terrifying moments when Amy was unable to open her eyes lest she become an Angel. Also, the way the episode integrated the story about the cracks in the universe into the actual plot was just brilliant. No other big bad of a season has fitted into an episode of Doctor Who (that wasn’t part of the season finale) as naturally as they did in “Flesh and Stone.” “Vampires in Venice” was good if not exceptional though it provided plenty of great comic moments. The Doctor jumping out of a cake at Rory’s stag party goes down as one of the first truly classic comic moments of Matt Smith’s tenure as the Doctor. And the psychic paper saying that Rory was Amy’s eunuch was pretty hilarious as well (and further proof of how terribly Amy had treated Rory up to this point). “Amy’s Choice” may have been the sleeper best of the disc especially in how I thought I knew the answer the whole episode and then the show confirmed my answer and then smacked me in the face at the last second and told me I was wrong. It had a superb mix of surrealist comedy (old people trying to break into a house for some reason made me think of the village scenes of Resident Evil 4 but in a hilarious light) and actually horrific moments. What makes DoctorWho work for me when I find myself outgrowing so much other science fiction is the tongue-in-cheek, intentionally campy (but self-aware) nature of the program and on “Amy’s Choice,” it really embraced the more bizarre aspects of the show.

Some quick thoughts before I go (and lie back down on my couch to watch Hugo which I have at home from Netflix!). I was glad to finally see Amy treat Rory with the love and respect that he deserves. He was starting to get more abused by Amy than Mickey was by Rose (because at least Rose was never Mickey’s fiancee), but it seems like Amy’s finally realized she loves Rory. It was very awkward (but hilarious) when Amy tried to make out with the Doctor, and I’m going to be honest. Had I been in the Doctor’s shoes at that moment, I wouldn’t have been able to turn down her feminine charms. Karen Gillan pretty much makes me say “damn” every time I see her. I can’t believe I’m already over half-way through the season. I’ve only got two discs left and I’m fairly certain I only started watching this season Sunday. Obviously, I’m enjoying it quite a bit, and I have no qualms saying that at this point, it’s the best season of the show. I’d choose David Tennant as the Doctor any day, but the writing has never been half as good as it is right now. Sorry Russel T. Davies. Steven Moffat is in a different league than you.

Final Score: A-

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