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Published on June 22nd, 2008 | by Mark Watson

Turn Left

The Legend that is Bernard Cribbins

Let it be known that we don’t actually pay Mark Watson, and have been attempting to evict him from Kasterborous Towers for some months now. Anyway, he wrote a review, here it is, etc…

There are two lifts in my building, one on the right and the other, unsurprisingly enough, on the left. Coming back from snorkeling yesterday and eagerly awaiting this weeks episode of Who I was presented with a unique problem.

I pressed both lift buttons as always and both arrived at the same time, now the right hand lift also goes down to our parking garage so it is not uncommon to jump in, press up and find yourself inexplicably heading down to the parking garage where you are thrown out or squashed into a corner by a Spanish family, complete with rutting mutt and horribly behaved children.

So when the lifts both went DING! simultaneously I made what seemed the right choice and I TURNED LEFT.

What a disaster, after struggling up the to the first floor the ascensor jerked to a sudden stop. The lights flickered and I was stuck, alone and in a metal shoebox with only the manufacturers details on a plate (Schindler’s Lift, believe it or not it’s completely true) and a sickly looking silverfish for company.

Within seconds I had started to panic, it is now thirty plus degrees in my area of Spain and the thought of being slowly cooked alive in a metal box isn’t how I’d like to leave this little blue planet. Judging from the sounds of barking and screaming going up and down past me the other lift was working fine. It was time for drastic action, the time I had got stuck was precisely 5.45 by the hall clock, which I had caught a glimpse of in my way into the building.

The hours seemed to pass slowly, the lift started to heat up so I spread my towel on the floor and stripped off all my clothes, delirium soon set in and I sang some sea shanty’s to keep my spirits up, next came the hunger, God what a hunger, and I was reduced to killing and cooking the silverfish with my lighter, which I made into a passable Ray Mears-type meal.

Eventually I was rescued! The president of the building had heard my delirious singing and burbling and managed to get the lift working again. The doors were forced open with a crowbar and I sprang into the lobby, crazed, sweaty and with a half eaten chunk of brown flecked sweetcorn stuck to my lip. Fortunately my fiance was there to provide comfort, as indeed were her entire family, having dropped by to discuss our wedding plans, and the majority of the buildings other occupants who were heading off to the midsomer festivities.

"Wheeeerrrr errr wha wha what time is it?" I croaked feebly.
"Ten to six" they chorused.
"Wheeeerrrr errr wha wha what day?"
"Saturday" they replied, followed by screams of dismay, "You have something on your lip!"
It was at this point I vomited on my fiance’s mother’s head and passed out.

 

If only I had TURNED RIGHT!

Donna was presented with a similar choice in this week’s episode. Sent back somehow to just before she met the Doctor by a sort of "Don’t tell your fortune at all, stick a big beetle on your back, err reader" she had to make the simple choice of picking between temping in the city and a permanent job, in Kilburn presumably. Talked into it by possibly the dreariest, most depressing mother in the history of time we were then treated to the story of what would have happened if she hadn’t met the Doctor at all, which in turn killed him and then wove their family’s story about all the incidents which would have happened, usually round Christmas, had the Doc not been about. Cue the destruction of London by the Titanic and all the Italians in the UK being given half a house up North for a week and a half and then shipped off to Labour Camps where, judging by Wilf’s reaction, they are gassed and turned into meatballs to feed the rest of the population.

I was somewhat bemused as to why the Italians didn’t put up an almighty struggle, as they seemed to know what was going on, rather than just surrendering meekly.

Ah yeah actually, now I get it!

In terms of an episode this was quite thrilling and well executed but with plot holes you could drive a truck through…does everyone who sees "Madame Winker" get the same treatment? What was Rose doing there, I mean really, think about it, that beetle, ultimately, managed to kill itself by introducing Rose into the equation, it also managed to warn the Dr about the oncoming Darkness and do "Madame Winker" out of any potential silver crossing her palm. (Shame really, as she had the right technique, the last time I went to visit a fortune teller she also told me I had something on my back, when I turned round to check I was belted squarely on the temple by a crystal ball and woke up, naked and penniless, round the back of the "Spiderman 3" ride which, I might add, is probably in no way endorsed by Marvel and is last years "Spiderman 2" ride with Spidey painted black and a new "3" nailed over last years "2", such is the merriment of Mataro fair, a yearly affair which increases crime in the area by about a million percent for a two week period in the summer and "Metal Fatigue" related injuries and deaths a thousandfold.)

Apart from the thrills and great acting by the fantastic Tate and Cribbins was it a good episode? The answer is NO, the beetle was a well made but not very articulate piece of rubbish and not even slightly realistic, the "what if" storyline has been done to much better effect in Father’s Day and elsewhere, the Doc presumably spent his off screen time being actually dead and in the great scheme of things it affected very little except giving the chance for Rose, no longer played by Billie Piper but now portrayed by the Gibb brother whose teeth don’t seem to fit his mouth.

A chance to be back in Who and warn the Doctor what is coming in the next two weeks, the season finale with the entire cast of everyone who has ever been in Nu Who (RTD apparently greets his friends in this manner with a knowing, self satisfied point at himself, "Hiya Russ", "Nuuu Whooo!") was evidently too much to turn down.

So there you have it, I am looking forward to seeing to the Daleks again of course and take pleasure, as always, in the fact that this was a DT light episode "Tall, skinny fella, can’t act his way out of a paperbag but FANTASTIC HAIR" the return of Gibb, sorry Rose and the fact I have learned a lesson of my own, don’t turn left or right.

Take the stairs!

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