So for my fourth Who post of the day, I had to pick this two parter featuring the tenth Doctor and probably most popular on an equal par with Tom Baker’s Doctor. I had to pick this as it contains a library and this library is a whole planet, so how could I resist?
The Doctor and Donna land in the middle of the biggest library in the Universe one that covers an entire planet. Yet it also houses a sinister set of foes that quickly send shivers up the spine, and that prove it’s wise to, as advised, “count the shadows”. Yet with the mysterious character of River Song, the equally intriguing Dr Moon and a small girl’s nightmares to consider, there’s plenty to unravel.
There is another reason for picking this episode and that is because it’s rare for the Doctor to be put off kilter for very long but when he encounters River Song a person (with spoilers) from his future, things are always going to take an interesting and dramatic turn and indeed story arc.
The separate storylines, which take a while to converge, coupled with the meeting in time of the Doctor and River, which adds to the Doctor’s initial puzzlement give a different feel to this story, one that keeps you immersed in it Then of course there are the Vashta Nerada, who make for a very sinister antagonist whose name translated from whatever alien language it is, means ‘the shadows that melt the flesh
As usual the episodes are pacy with lots of running, developing storylines that gradually unfold and characters that you do genuinely like, even the ones you don’t, you find you do…sometimes. Donna especially has a storyline which makes you feel for her character, arguably more than anyone else in this two parter, although it is a close run thing on several occasions.
Donna is perhaps my favourite of the modern shows companions, her sharpness and down to earth nature makes her a great foil for the Doctor and someone who doesn’t put on airs and graces or take any nonsense from him or anyone else. Her difficult to impress nature certainly creates a challenge for the Doctor and one he likes.
More so than usual it was tough to narrow it down to one story for Tennant, he has many great stories including Blink, the Waters of Mars and The Girl in the Fireplace. This one has a nice mix of different settings, perspectives, craziness, catchphrases and a nice bit of sinister thrown in too. In the end though it was probably the books that inspired me to do this one.