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Published on November 18th, 2007 | by Christian Cawley

Time Crash Reviewed

Time Crash. Seems like a nice classic title, but it is in fact a special minisode made for BBC Children in Need event for 2007.

I have to admit that I was really excited to see another mini episode, having been captivated by the first one in 2005. But how did it stack up?

Peter Davison returns, albeit for a brief moment, to TV Doctor Who and while his physical appearance has changed a bit, he’s still the Doctor as ever he was. From the first moment we saw him on screen to the last, he was a joy to watch, and acting alongside his older, yet younger looking self, really brought the two eras of the show together.

Steven Moffat once again shows his excellent skills as a writer by presenting us with a story that not only introduces a whole new generation of fans to Peter Davison, but also explains the age discrepancy, the new look of the TARDIS console room, the reason for their meeting, and how it came to be that the Titanic could have crashed into the interior of the TARDIS itself.

The 7 or so minutes was very well used–they didn’t try to rush more then they should have into the time they had and didn’t try to make the story into something it was not. It was simply something to entertain and help raise money for Children in Need.

I’m impressed with Doctor Who for a number of reasons, but in this case, because there are not many TV shows where you can insert a story within another. The cuts were almost seamless and were it not for a slight lighting change, you could have thought this was filmed at the same time as Last of the Time Lords (the story during which it takes place).

If it had one disappointing area it would have to be the speech from Tennant to Davison about “You were my Doctor.” While it was a beautiful speech, it felt more like a fan speaking to the actor then it did one Doctor to the other. It made me step out of the scene and into a private chat. Still, if that is my chief complaint I can live with that. I mean, new Who was just a dream 3 years ago, so now to get even 7 minutes of a worthwhile story is an absolute treat.

That said, this story–much like 2005’s post-regeneration scene–does sort of feel like a set up for missed information. 2005’s episode bridging the gap and explaining why the TARDIS spins out of control on Christmas Eve and now, Time Crash, telling us how the Titanic came to be in the Doctor’s doorstep. If this is the case, it does seem like an afterthought by the writers to feed the fans the explanations they forgot to give, or thought not important at the time, but as I said before, I can live with that, so long as it is engaging and interesting.

Last year’s 45-minute long concert of Murray Gold’s original scores was very nice to have and I certainly enjoyed it. Still, I could not help but feel a bit of a loss by not having another mini episode like the year before, so I hope that the trend for Doctor Who’s participation with Children in Need becomes a staple mini story.

Special thanks must go out to all of those who donated their time and efforts into making this story not only for us, the fans, but for a worthy cause.

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About the Author

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A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.



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