Doctor Who Series 1 – television series review

"Doctor Who Series 1" poster.
“Doctor Who Series 1” poster.
I’ve been a fan of Doctor Who for a number of years. The first Doctor I watched was Tom Baker, but I have since watched many of the older series. Doctor Who Series 1 is the first season (or “series”) in the revamped version of the show. It starts off with a bang and goes for a wild ride the entire season. My favorite episodes this season include “Rose”, “Dalek”, “Father’s Day”, “The Empty Child”, and “The Parting of the Ways”.

“Rose” introduces the new Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) as he saves Rose Tyler (Billie Piper) from being killed by the plastic Autons of the Nestene Consciousness. The episode was fast-paced and exciting, doing a great job of setting the tone for the new series.

The returning series faltered a bit with the Slitheen arc in “Aliens of London” and “World War Three”. Doctor Who is known for its humor, but most of the humor in these episodes dealt with fart jokes, and that got old really quickly. These episodes did not endear the new series to me.

However, those were the worst episodes of Doctor Who Series 1. In “Dalek”, we go back to the fun adventure. For the first time in the new series, the Daleks appear. Well, one Dalek, anyway. A collector of strange and unusual artifacts has added a mostly-dead Dalek to his collection. After absorbing time energy from Rose, it comes to life and starts exterminating everyone. I found the end of the episode to be rather poignant.

My favorite episode this season was “Father’s Day”, in which Rose finally meets her father. After Rose resuces him from the accident which should have killed him, Rose, the Doctor, and a wedding party find themselves trapped in a time bubble as strange creatures try to destroy them. This episode packed a lot of emotional impact, and I loved how Rose came to an understanding with her past.

A bit of creepy horror comes in to play in “The Empty Child” of Doctor Who Series 1. The constant “Are you my mummy?” questioning becomes really creepy. We also meet Captain Jack Harkness (John Barrowman) for the first time. He is a fun recurring character in the series as a whole, and actually plays a significant role later on.

The final episode of the season, “The Parting of the Ways” is the second half of a two-parter. This was an amazing episode, and contains amazing performances by both Eccleston and Piper. It is also the last performance by Eccleston as the Doctor, and he is replaced at the end of the episode after regeneration by David Tennant.

While I have fond feelings for the previous seasons of Doctor Who, the BBC and Russell T. Davies did an decent job restarting the series again. I found this season to be a step up from those in the past, and the series only got better after it. If you haven’t seen Doctor Who Series 1 yet, definitely make time for it. It leads to great things.

Episode list:
    “Rose” Four point zero stars
    “The End of the World” Three point five stars
    “The Unquiet Dead” Three point zero stars
    “Aliens of London” Three point zero stars
    “World War Three” Two point five stars
    “Dalek” Four point zero stars
    “The Long Game” Three point five stars
    “Father’s Day” Five point zero stars
    “The Empty Child” Four point zero stars
    “The Doctor Dances” Three point five stars
    “Boom Town” Three point five stars
    “Bad Wolf” Three point five stars
    “The Parting of the Ways” Four point zero stars

Original Air Dates: March 26, 2005 – June 18, 2005 (UK)
TV Parental Guidelines Rating: TV-PG
Network: BBC One
Language: English

MySF Rating: Three point five stars
Family Friendliness: 90%

Content:

Alcohol/Drugs: 1 (occasional social drinking)
Language: 1 (occasional mild, deity)
Nudity: 0
Sexuality: 1 (flirting, some brief innuendo)
Violence: 2 (some fighting, some death, cyberperil, extermination)

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