Thursday, April 30, 2009

K3 - Day of Reckoning

Episode 3 starts of with the second half of the big battle set piece between the humans and the Daleks. And just look at all those extras! Has Doctor Who ever had this many people on camera at one time? And there's, like, at least six Daleks! Doctor Who enters the land of big(ger) budget entertainment.

The battle is actually a turning point in the story. As the story was set up, we see the human resistance movement in London to be small, yet well organized, and its members seem quite confident that they can do some damage to the Daleks with Dortmun's bombs. One would get the impression that it would be this small band of humans who would lead the defeat of the Daleks, with The Doctor's help, of course.

But almost every resistance member is killed in the battle, shattering the group and forcing everyone to scatter to different parts of the country. It's a bold move in the script to pick up and move the action to an entirely new setting with new characters and such. It's also a good way to keep a six-part serial moving and have it not seem slow and plodding.

What also keeps the action moving is that there are often three, and sometimes four, plot lines going at the same time - David and Susan's story, Barbara and Jenny trying to get to Bedford, and Ian and Craddock doing likewise aboard the Dalek saucer. The Doctor features less and less over this episode (and especially the next, about which more later), allowing the chemistry between David and Susan to build. The closeness that they are already displaying in this episode is a little jarring considering they never had many scenes together beforehand. It's not Leela and Andred jarring, though, and it does get better as the episodes move along.


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