Review: ‘Doctor Who’ – ‘The Power of Three’

09.22.12 7 years ago 34 Comments

A review of tonight’s “Doctor Who” coming up just as soon as I mock your log…

Befitting an episode that spanned a year or so in the lives of the Ponds, “The Power of Three” tried to accomplish an awful lot, but it was only successful at some of its goals.

I definitely felt the passage of time and the notion that lots and lots of things were happening over the course of the slow invasion, and I quite liked the notion that Amy and Rory were now old enough that a life of adventure with the Doctor wasn’t as alluring as it used to be. Nearly all the material about the Doctor’s friendship with the Ponds, Brian’s concern for his son and daughter-in-law’s safety, etc., was terrific.

On the other hand, because Chris Chibnall’s script devoted so much time to that, the slow invasion itself was such an afterthought that the Doctor was able to solve the whole problem with a few flicks of the sonic screwdriver. And even though Amy’s narration makes a big deal about how cubes represent the power of three, this was a story where the two companions didn’t do an awful lot to save the day.

Mostly, though, I was bothered by the notion that after making their peace, repeatedly, with the idea that Real Life would ultimately be more appealing to them than Doctor Life, Amy and Rory on the spur of the moment (and with only minimal urging from Brian) decide that, no, they’re just fine traveling on the TARDIS indefinitely. And while I’m sure Chibnall had to keep the status quo intact so that Moffat can write the two characters out however he intends, the end of the episode didn’t track with everything we’d been seeing previously. Even earlier in the hour, they went on a series of adventures during their anniversary party without feeling the tug of ongoing adventure.

I think there was a very good story here, but one that would have been better-served as a two-parter so more time could have been devoted to the invasion itself, to the Doctor’s second attempt to stick around on Earth for a while, to his friendship with the Brigadier’s daughter and especially to the Ponds’ about-face at the end.

What did everybody else think?

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