New Series

Caves and Twins: The God Complex (or Why Matt Smith Is Now My Favourite Doctor)

God Complex – any good? Well, kinda. A bit like 2011’s season on Doctor Who

Apparently Being Human is the most amazing thing in the world ever, but I’ve never seen it so all I have to go on is School Reunion and Vampires of Venice when it comes to Toby Whithouse.

This, for me, is not an especially encouraging sign. The former is a fun runaround, the latter perhaps the most forgettable story in the NuWho run. So would The God Complex be Being Human or would it be his Doctor Who stuff (I’m taking it on trust Being Human is any good – it might be shit for all I know).


Good monster

Good premise

Good acting

Good epilogue

A couple of really nice directorial flourishes


The Complex of Fenric – The whole faith thing was a horrible fudge that just didn’t seem work for me – plus it was a rip-off of Fenric

The fan guy – Can’t remember his name. Is it just me or does Doctor Who tend to delight in lampooning geeks and losers of late? A bit rich, surely?

The first time I watched The God Complex I didn’t like it. I just didn’t think it went anywhere and thought the ending all to cock. For all it’s ‘terror in every room’ premise I didn’t think it was frightening; its set-up pastiched a number of sci-fi sources and while the back-story to what was going on was novel it felt like a weird swerve for the sake of it and didn’t come across properly.

On a second viewing I found more to like – the potential new companion character was good (can’t remember her name) and I like David Walliams’ character.

Matt Smith was excellent, as usual, and the scenes where he dropped Rory and Amy off and flew off, alone, in the TARDIS were very strong.

But I still can’t shake off the feeling that this series has never got out of the blocks. Splitting the series now feels like a mistake as it’s been hard for it to gain momentum and the River Song saga seems to have overwhelmed the season.

Like The God Complex, I’d be hard pushed to say what wasn’t/isn’t working here, but I’m sensing more and more that people are becoming a lot less bothered about Doctor Who. Friends of mine have stopped watching it; I’ve stopped discussing it; out of the Geek Clique (a shadowy cabal of a dozen or so fans I’m mates with) only one is really enjoying this series; ratings appear to be heading downwards; and, as we fans always knew they would, the knives are coming out for Who in the media.

What does this have to do with Matt Smith being my favourite Doctor? Not a lot to be honest, I’m just disappointed that at the point that we have a TARDIS crew, and particularly Doctor – actor and character – Doctor Who doesn’t seem to be working. Is it Moffat? Is he too busy? Is it lack of cash or time? Is it the much-discussed production problems?

This latter one, for me, is most worrying. Stuff leaks out. It did 30 years ago from JN-T’s production office and is especially does these days, when the higher echelons of Doctor Who are staffed by people who are fans and professionals. That’s a dangerous mix in the internet era and a lot of very sensitive stuff is doing the rounds of fandom chatrooms, emails and Facebook DMs.

Moffat pooh-poohs any suggestion that things aren’t hunky-dory but if a fraction of what is circulated is to be believed then the production office has been quite the war-zone over the last year. It’s impossible to believe that behind-the-scenes strife – and the likes of those rather odd public spats between Moff and BBC newsreaders and managers who seem keen to blurb out any old nonsense at the drop of a hat – can’t have some effect on the finished product.

For now I retain my faith in Moffat – and he has the best Doctor ever available to him and Amy and Rory are excellent, believable characters who are played well. Season Five was the best in the new series for my money. So I’m keeping things crossed for next year and a good run into 2013.

Doctor Who matters to me; it does for most of us. I find it impossible to walk away; to not tune in every week and not to be irked by tabloids having a pop at my – our – show. So I’ll keep watching and keep hoping. I hope Moffat and Smith keep the faith too, because next year needs to to be better than this year.