â€œIs this how time usually passes?â€
Vincent And The Doctor is the long-awaited episode from Richard Curtis, the man who helped bring Blackadder to the small screen, wrote the script that launched Hugh Grantâ€™s cinematic career and is a driving force behind Comic Relief. Many will probably assume that his background in comedy will bring a light touch to Doctor Who. Well they may be slightly disappointed as this is a rather dark and unpredictable episode which takes a historical figure and places him into rather bizarre and chilling circumstances.
Terror lurks in the cornfields of Provence, but only a sad and lonely painter can see it. Amy Pond finds herself shoulder to shoulder with Vincent Van Gogh, in a battle with a deadly alien.
Touching, sentimental, bleak and at times whimsical this is not a traditional Doctor Who episode, much in the same way Love & Monsters wasnâ€™t and will split the audience right down the middle. I can almost hear the discussions and vigorous chat and debate from fans as I type this preview. Containing many of the writerâ€™s trademark touches such as light comedy, human emotion and love, the story may at first seem slight but it is actually an incredibly deep episode which looks at the darker side of creativity.
The small ensemble are forced to face up to demons both personal and possibly real with measured gusto. Matt and Karen are in supporting roles here as Tony Curran takes centre stage, embracing the role of Van Gogh painting the artist larger than life with bold, colourful strokes. Bill Nighy (a man often connected with the role of the Doctor) pops up as a Curator, a rather charming and polished cameo played, as youâ€™d expect, to his usual perfection.
Vincent And The Doctor is not the episode I was expecting, but after the action packed Silurian two parter, this is just what the series needs to help ease us into the final stretch.