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Old 13-12-2012, 11:02
sovietusername
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This is my favourite Christmas Special, possibly rivalled only by The Christmas Invasion. It's got a really magical feel to it which I do think Christmas Specials should have. Unfortuantely Moffatt would try way to hard to make his next Christmas Special feel as magical (lets hope he doesent make the same same mistake with the upcoming "The Snowmen"), however here he gets it just right and this is what helps this surpass all previous Christmas Specials in my OP. After all, Christmas is a magical time (or it should be) where theres a warm glow, a big meal, lots of snow, and where Santa visits each and every house to give presents to children. Here. you dont just have robots diguised as Father Christmas, Father Christmas (Jeff) himself is actually real and often goes to parties with the Doctor and Frank Sinatra and Albert Einstein. "Keep the faith, stay off the naughty list."

We BF's (Big Fans) can be criticised sometimes for liking a show that is primarily aimed for children, and this does sometimes make me feel a tad silly, however never with Christmas Specials! Yes, there are plot holes a plenty in this, but it's obviously aimed at kids, and thats fine, cos at Christmas, I do turn into a kid! Admitedly, a very big, rather smelly kid, but, all the same, this is the sort of Christmas special I want, not taking itself to seriously like The End of Time, but magical rather than silly or the over the top like (shudder) the next Doctor, or the Doctor, the Widow &the Wardrobe. It's absolutely perfect and I can watch it time and time again.

The star of the show here is definately Matt Smiths 11th Doctor whose really funny here. "Big flashy lighty things have got me written all over them. Not actually, give me time, and a crayon... fish...cos if I was climbing out of the window I'd be going in the wrong direction, pay attention... erm, big, colour..." But he shows a really good serious side to here i.e. his guilt over what he's done to Kazran. I love the whole "better a broken hear than no heart at all" to which Kazran responds 2you try it, you just try it." The Doctor doesent say anything, but from his look, you KNOW he has. Dumbledore, sorry, Kazran is really good here. It is a bit tricky to believe that the Doctor can take the TARDIS throughout history to change the life of this 1 bitter old man yet cant lock on to the crashing spaceship, but like I say, this story is so entertaining, I'm able to be swept away without really having to worry about the details. Amy and Rory are a bit underused. I can forgive this in regards to Amy as Moffatt decides she'll wear the ploice uniform in the few scenes she's in and I like that costume A LOT , however I do think Rory's criminally under used and did make me a bit worried at the time that Rory would turn out to be a bit of a third wheel in the 6th series, Fortunately I was wrong.

I just love this episode. Eevry scene is magical, and, pretty much perfect, there's lots of comedy, as well as drama/tragedy and the soundtrack is extraordinary with epic new variations on I Am The Doctor. Both the opening and closing scenes are really exciting, the end where Kazran and Abigail ride off with each other is so sad, yet, somehow, really uplifting and (I think I'm overusing this word, but...) magical.

My favourite Christmas Special. Like I say, I think The Christmas Invasion comes very close to beating it, but thats more like a regeneration story etc, while this is just CHRISTMAS. I LOVE IT and can only hope the next Christmas Special is more like this than TDTWATW. It's wonderful, it's funny, it's sad, and guess what? It's magical. Love it. 5 stars. 10/10

http://vimeo.com/26190089

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyOV3pmtUZA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IvDtiIjZj88

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ebHPg4ySyCM

Merry soon-to-be-Christmas EVERYONE!
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Old 13-12-2012, 11:53
CD93
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Around this time last year, I couldn't sleep one night. It was coming up to 3am and turned on the TV just 'cause. This was on iPlayer. I happily watched it through, and was relaxed enough on the other side to fall asleep.

If I can watch it at 3am and still enjoy it as much as the first time... it's a good episode for me.
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Old 13-12-2012, 12:32
Batmannequin
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I absolutely bloody love this episode!

I have to admit that I was a bit disappointed when they first said that the episode was going to be a retelling of A Christmas Carol - it seems that pretty much every TV show in the 80s had at least one Christmas episode where somebody got Scrooge-d, and I just couldn't bear the thought of this tired old schtick getting repeated again, but I should have had faith in The Moff - the concept is dealt with utterly brilliantly here - especially the "Show me my future!"/"....I am" exchange, which still gives me the shivers just thinking about it.

Smith is as excellent as ever, with so many fantastic lines ("...and a crayon" and "It's either this or stay in your room inventing a new kind of screwdriver - don't make the same mistakes I did" being my two favourites), Amy is in the police uniform because Moffat loves us, Jenkins was utterly charming, and Gambon... Gambon just utterly stole the show. What a wonderful performance he puts in - managing to be terrifyingly callous and achingly sympathetic at the same time. God, the look on his face when he nearly slaps his younger self... Probably the best one-shot performance in NewWho, in my books.

I'm not ashamed to say this episode made me bawl, too - not only the heartbreaking bits (Kazran's "You just try it...", Abigail choosing Christmas Day, or remarking on how old Kazran has become while he was too afraid), but the heartWARMING bits, too (the final shark ride, The Doctor deciding to help rather than oppose Kazran because he didn't hit the boy, "Halfway out of the dark...") THIS is how you make an episode.

If I were to be picky, then Amy and Rory are a bit superfluous, the day being saved by singing was a bit twee, and Kazran not wanting to save the spaceship due to apathy [not even corruption, or greed, which would have fitted the story better - he just "didn't care"] was a bit of an asspull to give a reason to get to the Scrooging, but to be honest, dwelling on those few things would be just as miserly as Mr. Dickens' most famous creation, so it being Christmas and all, I'll let them go.

Not only a truly magical (yeah, I'm using that word too - it's the only one that fits) Christmas special [and, funnily enough, the first Christmas episode to actually FEEL like a Christmas episode - being *set* at Christmas and being *about* Christmas are two different things...], but also a truly great episode by any standards.

And fair play to Moff for having the sense not to wibbly-wobbly-curey-wurey Abigail at the end. A lesson I wish he'd remembered in the next Christmas episode... But that's a tale for another topic...
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Old 13-12-2012, 12:41
Granny McSmith
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Nice episode.

I chiefly remember it for the line "Half way out of the dark" which I thought was inspired, and exemplifies why, in spite of everything, I love Moffat as a writer.
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Old 13-12-2012, 15:22
Shawn_Lunn
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Halfway Out Of The Dark would be a brilliant title for a Moffat episode.
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Old 13-12-2012, 16:40
Sara_Peplow
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I enjoyed this one. Karzan and abigails relationship was sweet. Started as a pre teen crush and blossomed into more. Matt, Karen and Arthur were on good form too.Liked teh positive christmas message of being half way out the dark. Also 11 told Amy things had to end so new things could begin. Sets it up nicely for S6. Involving in no particualr order death,birth, kidnaps regenerations and finally two marriages instead of one.
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Old 13-12-2012, 16:50
ryanr554
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I remember I thought that this episode was pretty awful when I saw it. I can't even remember it now since I only watched it that one time.

Christmas specials aren't Doctor Who's strong point.
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Old 13-12-2012, 18:07
daveyboy7472
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This is my favourite Christmas Special, possibly rivalled only by The Christmas Invasion.

For once, Soviet, I agree with you!

Compared to the previous three Xmas Specials this was something of a triumph and has already been pointed out it really did feel like Xmas rather than it being a sideshow. I love A Christmas Carol as a story anyway so it was even better seeing it being converted to fit in with the Doctor Who format.

I thought the episode took a while to get going. It wasn't until Katherine Jenkins appeared in full that it really took off. Loved the whole story of the Xmas Eve visits and I thought KJ played her part beautifully and it was a beautiful moment when she sang to save the day towards the end.

Wasn't too bothered Amy and Rory weren't in it that much, though it was good to see Amy in her policewoman's outfit again!

Matt Smith was brilliant once more and overall I just love the episode which has grown on me lots since it was first shown.

And needless to say it was better than the large majority of Series 5.

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Old 13-12-2012, 22:43
TLC1098
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Nah I didn't really like that one.
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Old 13-12-2012, 23:14
DavetheScot
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By contrast to some of you, this is the only Christmas episode I didn't like. I can still feel the disappointment I felt when I saw it, because I'd been looking forward to it so much.

The look of the thing is great; that I acknowledge. Those sky fish looked wonderful, and the shark too. But there didn't seem to be much else too it; all style and no substance.

The same Christmas this was on, they showed all the Christmas specials (except, oddly, The Christmas Invasion). The difference was incredible. Every one of them knocked the stuffing out of this piece of chilly emptiness.
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Old 13-12-2012, 23:21
davrosdodebird
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Those people who love all the other specials and hate this one seem to do so because this one hass less "bang bang stuff blows up... ACTION!!!!!!" sequences IMO. No offence *waves*

What I love about this one is the gradual change we see in Kazran, only for the Doctor to effectively become the cause of the misery he set out to avoid; it's all very Day of the Daleks. All the while we are reminded that if the Doctor doesnt do something, people are going to die, Amy and Rory included. Kazran's journey to redemption and change is very touching, and the coldness he feels becomes relatable and saddening to see, from being distant and scrooge-ish at the start.

The episode's biggest success for me is that it is intelligent and fun without dragging on. There are outrageous moments, funny moments, jumpy moments and a lot of empathy-filled moments too. It has a lot for what it is, and isn't as overcomplicated as some other episodes out there
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Old 14-12-2012, 01:38
DavetheScot
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Those people who love all the other specials and hate this one seem to do so because this one hass less "bang bang stuff blows up... ACTION!!!!!!" sequences IMO. No offence *waves*
I'd dispute that, actually. I like a lot of quieter stories. Just not this one.
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Old 17-12-2012, 03:07
hajua
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The line at the start about "every planet has a mid winter festival" put me right off. I live in the southern hemisphere. Xmas is a summer thing for me and half the planet. After that everything seemed wrong. Flying fish would be ok in wallace and gromit but not here. The singer was technically talented but lifeless. The Doctor editting someone's memories (by changing the events that caused them) was completely Timelord Victorious. I really really didn't lke this story.
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