Fear Her: Time to Re-evaluate?

In their ongoing series “Isn’t it about time you gave… another chance” the SFX website has for some reason decided to cast its eyesolus over 2006’s muted Doctor Who abusive father-fest Fear Her.

Not exactly a classic, Fear Her tells the story of the day the Doctor and Rose landed in a London suburb that was plagued by missing children and a bump in the road, where the freaky-voiced Chloe Webber and her mother were terrorised by the psychic manifestation of her abusive father, crayon format inside the girl’s wardrobe.

All of this thanks to a supposedly benign entity, a lost Isolus, which was sent home thanks to the “love” in the Olympic torch, which the Doctor managed to get to the stadium in time to launch the games.

If you’re still with me, here’s a recollection from our own review of the episode, from the usually laid-back Brian A. Terranova…

While I didn’t sit there this week saying to myself “when will it end?” I did find myself saying “where’s the proper monsters?” The last time I saw a proper monster in Doctor Who would have to be this year’s Cybermen story; at least they were a real threat. Fear Her didn’t really strike me with fear.  All I saw was a little girl doing a fine exorcist impression and drawing some lovely pictures.

(You can read more about the review and our thoughts on the episode in Ultimate Regeneration, which will be out soon…)

Now in fairness, we’re fans of the episode’s writer, Matthew Graham (co-creator of Life on Mars), and suspect something was lost between script and screen. If it wasn’t then the whole “abusive father in wardrobe” thing is far too disturbing for family drama, certainly as pitched, at least.

Join in the fun and games on discussing this tale at www.sfx.co.uk.

Christian Cawley

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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