Doctor Who Season 11 Not as Bad -- or as Good -- as Previously Reported

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Doctor Who Season 11

Much ado was made about the iconic British sci-fi show, DOCTOR WHO, when the Doctor regenerated once more, this time into female form and played by JODIE WHITTAKER. More than that, the former showrunner, STEVEN MOFFAT, was leaving as well, putting the new direction of the show up in the air. Some fans were prepared to love the series, no matter what; others seemed determined to hate the series, no matter what.

The true measure of this eleventh season fell somewhere in between--not as bad as the naysayers put it, but nowhere near as good as the positive numbers indicated.

Whittaker's Doctor was a bit of a scatterbrain, casting thoughts about for answers and clues, then seemingly pulling them out of nowhere to the surprise of herself more than anyone else. She's also a bit of a name dropper, mentioning a famous person of history in nearly every episode as she joins herself with a crew of companions this season, including Graham O'Brien (BRADLEY WALSH), his grandson Ryan Sinclair (TOSIN COLE), and his police officer former schoolmate, Yasmin Khan (MANDIP GILL).

The direction of the series did seem to have a point in nearly every episode of making topical references. The Doctor doesn't like guns; brains are better. Racism still exists in some people in the future and the team has to make sure Rosa Parks refuses to give up her seat. A hotel magnate with his eye on the U.S. Presidency builds five-star accommodations atop landfills abounding with discarded dangerous experiments. A company that ships anything, anywhere, instaneously, is proud that their employment ranks include the required ten percent living beings, with only ninety percent of the workforce being robotic. And King James was a little too happy about finding and dispatching of witches in jolly olde England. 

To be certain, several of the episodes were entertaining to the degree that they told the story. It was the moralizing that came across a bit heavy-handed at times; and even when it wasn't, by the time the season was halfway into its run, finding the sociopolitical point of the episode had become enough of a certainty as to become a new Doctor Who drinking game. The effects were well done, and every single one of the actors did a stellar job with the roles they were given, although the point of Ryan Sinclair having some sort of coordination problem (delivered in the first episode with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer) seemed to have made zero impact on the character, as he got around quite well all the time.

Perhaps as Whittaker and crew move into the next season of this iteration of The Doctor, fans may begin to warm. Having The Doctor incarnate as a female is certainly not unexpected, as we had already seen her arch-enemy, The Master, do the same thing, coming back as Missy (short for Mistress), although this writer had hoped that JENNA COLEMAN had dropped enough "I'm the Doctor" claims during her tenure as the companion that the seemingly immortal Gallifreyan might have adapted her body as a vessel for a while.

Episodes on this release include :

01. The Woman Who Fell to Earth
02. The Ghost Monument
03. Rosa
04. Arachnids in the UK
05. The Tsuranga Conundrum
06. Demons of the Punjab
07. Kerblam!
08. The Witchfinders
09. It Takes You Away
10. The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos

Grade: 
3.5 / 5.0