Season Six - doesn't time fly? Doesn't seem long since Eccleston was running through a tunnel and enquiring as to whether we'd like to join him.
Blink and you skip forward over six years to the brilliant Matt Smith's sophomore series - and that of show-runner Stephen Moffat too.
Portents are frequently poor. High-level fan gossip suggested that Series Fnarg would be a disaster and it was brilliant. But there were lots more unpleasant rumours this time around about the allegedly shambolic production office; Moffat distracted by his other series and various production commitments; an unloved and over-promoted production staff; the BBC at odds with the show's show-runner; and a fickle press that's apparently forgotten its love affair with out series.
Ratings do seem to be down this series too. Oh there's timeshifting and there's definitely poor scheduling but there does seem to be a drop-off in the public's interest in the show. All of a sudden 'do you wanna come with me?' seems like a long time ago. So it's a good time to take stock.
In the classic 'what was good; what was bad?' format of Caves and Twins I've turned my eye stalk on the whole series to figure out which stories worked and which didn't.
The Doctor's Wife - An all-time classic. Funny, scary, weird. And a Timelord called The Corsair. A manifesto for how NuWho can succeed.
A Good Man Goes To War
A classic NuWho clusterfuck but on reflection I liked all of the elements and I loved the last 15 minutes. Matt Smith, especially, was fantastic.
The Girl Who Waited
A genuine hard sci-fi set-up that led into one of the best-observed emotional stories of the new run. Brilliant work from the regulars and another episode that could really show how Doctor Who can work shorn of its tiresome story arc trappings.
The Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon - I just didn't care, probably because anyone who had any sense knew that the stand-out scene, and the peg the whole thing hung from, was a lie from the outset.
Deaths: The Doctor, Rory, Amy
Curse of the Black Spot - Classic NuWho shit episode. Not because of the odd swerve, which didn't work anyway, but because of how utterly trite and dull the whole thing was.
The Rebel Flesh/The Almost People - There was a lot on these episodes I liked but I didn't really feel it had the courage of its convictions. The Doctor doppelganger didn't really go anywhere or make much sense; the moral ramifications of the gangers were wrapped up in noble self-sacrifices and/or a big explosion and I didn't feel any of the characters were well-drawn.
Let's Kill Hitler - Impossible to like something so in love with itself. A sprawling mess that tried the patience and had another death swerve.
Deaths: The Doctor
Night Terrors - Utterly awful. I hated this.
The God Complex - I feel harsh putting this one here too as there were lots of bits that I liked but the ending was drivel and, given the promising set-up, it didn't deliver.
Closing Time - I've seen this twice and can recall virtually nothing
The Wedding of River Song - Carried the sins of the season as a whole on its shoulders and, as such, couldn't be rated as good. The whole season comes to a messy, shagged-out end in an episode that sparkles with lovely moments but ultimately collapses under the weight of how daft the whole season has been.
Deaths: The Doctor
Well, after what feels like the longest lead-in to a mid-season story since The Dalek's Masterplan, A Good Man Goes To War promises much with bonkers SFX, a raft of returning monsters, River Song and an angry Doctor.
So, was this The Big Bang or was it that drivel with the Master as the Prime Minister?
Sonataran nurse - Gave a bit of depth to this race, which hasn't been interesting since 1976.
New Adventures - There was something of the NAs about this in the way that it tried to establish a complicated, fleshed-out, almost unified vision of the Whoniverse where Sontarans can be goodies and Earth Reptiles live on Earth alongside humans. I liked it.
Some very good lines - "Stringy"; "Stevie Wonder"; "Get some rest"; "Make a donation"; "No it's not; it's cool" - Moff's was always one for with his zingers; he was on form here.
Regulars - I've generally like the characterisation and performances of the regulars but I thought they were particularly good here – especially Smith, who was quite different again, and Arthur Darvill as a believable, likable foil.
The intro bit - Nice bait-and-switch on Melody's Dad (one of several throughout) and good Cyberman intro bit.
The fat blue bloke - I just like him
Abberline - Just liked this reference
Headless monks - A bit like the Smilers, these were a bit lost in the mix and didn't really come off.
Greatest hits - Rather like The Pandorica Opens, this was a bit of a greatest hits of Moff's run and beyond; rather like his version of Journey's End. The pirates, those daft space Spitfires, Cybermen, Sontarans, Silurians, that fat blue bloke. It felt very familiar and it was a little bit of a case of diminishing returns.
River Song - It's fairly clear we're supposed to think River is amazing, cool, funny, sexy ad generally fabulous. But I'm afraid I just find her a bit irritating.
Cyberman voices - Still terrible
Lots of nice elements, but it was pretty out there. So much going on - a few revelations and more questions again. Maybe, over 13 episodes, this will all turn out to be something of a masterpiece but it feels rather on the edge at the moment, like it could be an absolute disaster too.
On a second viewing this was a lot more enjoyable if you can indulge it. Smith really is excellent as the scales fall from his eyes in this episode and he continues to add more strings to his bow.
A Good Man Goes To War (even on a second viewing) does little to dispel the impression that this is shaping up to be quite the oddest series of Doctor Who in a long time. Certainly change was required but this feels fairly radical, to the point where this no longer feels like a Saturday early evening show but something that may be better off after the watershed.
I'm unsure if that's a good idea in terms of keeping an audience, but a a few teases have started to pay off this season I'm enjoying it more. Here's hoping the second half of series six is the superior one.
• Caves and Twins? What are you dribbling on about?
Go here: Caves and Twins