S32 (6) 5/6 The Rebel Flesh / The Almost People
10 February 2013 at 08:36 #2557Craig @craigEmperor
A solar tsunami liberates doppelgangers from their human ‘originals’. And when the Doctor arrives, the deaths begin. With a killer on the loose, the Doctor must convince the terrified factory workers to trust their doppelgangers.
Repeated on BBC Three on 8 and 9 February, here’s what you thought the first time round:
What ever happened to the other Doctor?10 February 2013 at 12:57 #2589Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip
This was what might be described as a ‘solid’ episode. Even the Radio Times introduces it as ‘well, not every episode can be a classic’. OK; good ideas, not excitingly executed.
Production-wise, I seem to recall that this was the episode where the roof fell in (literally), the director slipped on a patch of ice and was on crutches for most of the shoot, and the cast were freezing half to death. So they can be forgiven for the faint air of ‘can we just get through this?’ that somehow comes across on screen.
It’s a pity, because the ending is both shocking and memorable. Amy – isn’t. The ‘real’ Amy is trapped at Demon’s Run; running a flesh avatar and largely unaware that she was experiencing a virtual reality.
And yeah, what does happen to that other Doctor? The one who can possibly reform?10 February 2013 at 13:02 #2591Anonymous @
I found this extremely workmanlike and more than a bit dull on repeat viewings, with as @bluesqueakpip says, only the last five minutes in the TARDIS being the only really memorable thing in it. And this time I found Sarah Smart’s over-earnest first-year-drama-school performance somewhat grating. Which is odd because I really liked her in Wallander.
And yeah, what does happen to that other Doctor? The one who can possibly reform?
That I think is the million dollar question. And I definitely think that that line is in there for a reason. I reckon we haven’t seen the last of ganger Doc…9 July 2013 at 09:53 #13416jmetsr @jmetsr
Doctor you are evil. You killed a conscious being with human memories. You did this in full mental capacity, and you did it right in front of someone who clearly loves Amy in all of her instances. May the Daleks exterminate you for this is what you deserve.9 July 2013 at 10:40 #13421overunder @jamesunderscore
@jmetsr – See, I just don’t buy this line. I saw this comment a lot over at “the other place” when the episode aired, and it’s clearly nonsense – the flesh Amy is being controlled by Amy herself, without her knowledge – we see her wake up with a shock in unfamiliar surroundings when the flesh body is disintegrated. There is no independent “Flesh Amy” that the Doctor kills, this is obvious from the events of the preceding hour and forty minutes, and I suspect that anyone who does think that the Doctor callously did away with a clone of his best friend is being willfully obtuse, and probably has an agenda.
As for the episode itself, it’s all a bit farcical really, with a convenient happy ending for the acid miners. It’s a shame, it could have been a really dark, tense story but I think the pacing is all wrong. I have to agree with @jimthefish that Sarah Smart is off her game here too, she’s been excellent in many things in the past but I don’t think she really manages to get a handle on Jennifer and her motivations. Mind you, I can’t say I really understand Jennifer’s heel turn either. I think this was probably one of the low points of Series 6 for me.
So, @jmetsr, what did you think of the episode itself? how did you feel about the writing and direction, and how the series arc was advanced here?31 January 2014 at 20:38 #24909HML4.2.6 @hml4-2-6
Just wanted to point out the obvious ”empty child” reference,
The hologram of the boy (the one turning 5 that day), it said: ”daddy, daddy, where is my daddy?”
for a couple of times. still makes me shiver…24 January 2023 at 07:29 #73928Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent
Wow, am I the first person to feel inclined to comment on this double episode in nine years? And I’m only comment #7…
Actually, I guess that says it all, really. Not a terrible episode, just enough happening to keep me watching, I have a feeling it could almost have been cut down to a single episode without losing much.
The two Doctors being swapped was quite effective but I don’t think there was any foreshadowing that would have let us deduce it before the reveal, so that detracted slightly. What was a shock, and made watching the whole thing worthwhile, was the reveal that Amy was a doppelganger. (And Rory’s an Auton. What a nice plastic pair they’d make 🙂 I think there were a few clues to Amy – in hindsight, the Tardis detecting her as pregnant/not was an obvious sign that there was something ‘wrong’ with her. But it caught me by surprise. And then the Doctor zapped her! Wow! Didn’t see that coming either.
I assume Amy was grabbed (and copied) in the childrens’ home in Day of the Moon.25 January 2023 at 13:04 #73932janetteB @janetteb
@dentarthurdent I am surprised to by the lack of comments. I thought these episodes are quite watchable, not stand outs by any means but not bad either. “Workmanlike” i think a poster above said and that really sums them up. I would not choose these episodes as a stand alone re watch but I will happily watch them when working through the series. It is hard to really care too much for the characters, human or flesh copy and I think that is part of the problem and as you say, there is probably not really enough “story” for a two-parter. That final reveal though is a “belter” and of course that is the point of the entire story.
It may not have been one of the greatest stories but it had one of the best endings.
Janette26 January 2023 at 07:36 #73933Dentarthurdent @dentarthurdent
@janetteb Good point, it’s hard to feel a lot of empathy for the characters. I think part of this may be the difficulty of being sure whether at any moment we’re watching the ‘original’ or the ‘copy’, which is a problem inherent in the premise of the episode. And also, of course, the humans show little empathy for their clones. And (maybe this is just me) when there are similar characters, I find it hard to tell them apart – in this case there were three male humans (plus their clones). I actually felt a lot more empathy for Lorna from the Gamma Forests in A Good Man Goes to War.
Kudos to the Moff for not milking the sympathy for clone-Amy when the Doc zaps ‘her’, shocking though it seems. That would have been inappropriate since Amy’s consciousness was being ‘beamed in’ from Demon’s Run. (Though the nominal episode writer was Matthew Graham, I’m certain that bit was down to the Moff).27 January 2023 at 03:21 #73935winston @winston
@dentarthurdent @janetteb Hi! I remember the first time I saw these episodes I was shocked when Amy got zapped! I had no idea that she was plastic. For me the part I remember is when there are 2 Doctors and they challenge Amy’s way of thinking about the living plastic people and their rights, not knowing at the time that she is living plastic.
Good episodes that build into the story arc, worth a winter watch.
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