Saturday, 31 May 2008

Doctor Who, Series 4, Episode 8: Silence in the Library

I may post on this again properly later in the week, as is more usual, but this is a quick one to gush about how fantastic "Silence in the Library" was. Five TARDIS groans, best of the series so far, absolutely no doubt about it. Moffat is a genius! Here's the pre-credit scene again:

Doctor Who is clearly in very safe hands (Steven Moffat to take over Doctor Who). The episode was atmospheric, scary, intriguing, mysterious and there were a few laughs too. The layering of the episode, with the library located in the little girl's mind, the "count the shadows" refrain and Dr River Song, from the doctor's future, with her little TARDIS shaped book. Television just does not get any better than this. And with a great cliffhanger, and a whole bunch of mysteries, and a whole week to wait, it's like being a kid again! Everyone, of course, loved this episode. Nevertheless, pick of the reviews so far is on SFX:

. . . . After giving an entire generation of kids a phobia of statues with last-year’s Hugo-nominated “Blink”, Who showrunner elect Steven Moffat has now guaranteed they’ll also be sleeping with the lights on. The “count the shadows” theme has the same elegant simplicity as “Blink”’s “don’t look away”, and Moffat once again shows he’s a master at mining maximum chill power from an unseen enemy. The Vashta Nerada may be faceless “piranhas of the air” (aside from when they possess a spacesuit-clad skeleton), but no monster created courtesy of special effects could ever be as creepy as those which Moffat implants in your mind. To say they live in shadows all over the galaxy, even on Earth, might seem a little cruel to this planet’s more impressionable kids, but isn’t that what Doctor Who’s supposed to be about? The intriguing parallel plotline about the nameless little girl telling her psychiatrist Dr Moon (Colin Salmon) about the library in her head -or perhaps, as is hinted in the closing scenes, her world is fiction and the library reality - only serves to emphasise the episode’s claims to being the best of the series so far . . .
Not easy to choose a favourite clip from this week, but the pre-title sequence is as good as any, and I've stuck that at the top of the post.


Alan in Belfast said...

Yeah - a great episode. Wish we didn't have to wait a week for the conclusion.

Not half as scary as Blink. But I do get the feeling the little girl could be crouching behind the sofa next week!

Loren Rosson III said...

You better believe this is the best of the series so far! I'm in awe of Mr. Moffat. Bring on the Forest!

Loren Rosson III said...

Here's how the fans at Outpost Gallifrey feel to date about this season. Between 3000-4000 fans assigned each story a rating between 1-5. The first number is the percentage of voters who gave a perfect 5, the second a close 4, and the third is the total pecentage of 4 or 5 star votes.

No suprise, Moffat's masterpiece perches at the top (where I'm sure it will remain after the second part next week), while Davies' appalling season opener sits right at the bottom where it belongs (only 15% said 5 stars -- and I still say 2).

Silence in the Library 69%/25% = 94%
Fires of Pompeii 42%/44% = 86%
The Sontaran Stratagem/Poison Sky 28%/50% = 78%
Planet of the Ood 23%/52% = 75%
The Unicorn and the Wasp = 25%/44% = 69%
The Doctor's Daughter 20%/42% = 62%
Partners in Crime 15%/47% = 62%

Compare and contrast with my ratings --

Silence in the Library - 5
Fires of Pompeii - 5
Planet of the Ood - 4
The Unicorn and the Wasp - 3
The Doctor's Daughter - 3
The Sontaran Stratagem/Poison Sky - 2
Partners in Crime - 2

mhelfield said...

I agree! Silence in the Library is by far the best this season. I can't get over how intriguing and mysterious it was. I am intrigued also by River Song. Who is she? And I cannot wait for next week!

Bill said...

Never watched much Dr. Who, but now I know how people feel when I talk about Lost! ;)

Greetings, Mark. My name's Bill. I'd be honored if you could find a moment sometime to stop by my blog site. I've been reading your Gateway blog for a couple of months, and you've probably forgotten more than I know... which is why I'd really appreciate a bit of feedback on my Bible/History posts.

You've already encouraged me to learn a bit more about the synoptic 'problem'. (In particular, the history of the scholarship on it.) I also appreciated greatly several things you said on your (12/05) biblioblogger profile/interview. So, most of all, thanks for blogging and for sticking with it!

Hope to 'see' you soon...