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Published on September 14th, 2011 | by Christian Cawley

The God Complex Preview

If you enjoyed The Girl Who Waited, The Doctor’s Wife, Night Terrors or any other River Song-lite episode this season, then The God Complex is probably something that you will be looking forward to.

Written by Being Human creator Toby Whithouse (whose previous Doctor Who episodes are School Reunion (2006) and Vampires of Venice (2010)), The God Complex takes our travellers to a mysterious 1980s hotel, complete with monstrous fears such as clows, ventriloquist dolls, Weeping Angels and even David Walliams!

Walliams – a star of Little Britain and Come Fly With Me (not to mention the work of genius that preceded both, Rock Profiles) – guests as the rodent-like Figgis, and clearly endured a torrid time under the astonishing makeup. Given his impressive determination and stamina in swimming the Thames recently, however, this was probably a walk in the park.

So, a few thoughts about the episode in a moment – in the meantime, the BBC’s official synopsis:

The TARDIS lands in what looks like an ordinary hotel, as the time-travelling drama continues. But the walls move, corridors twist and rooms vanish. There is a room for every visitor that contains their deepest, darkest fears. Fears that will kill them. What lies in the Doctor’s room? And when his turn comes, will he welcome death like all the rest?

After the character shaping events of The Girl Who Waited, you might be forgiven for thinking that The God Complex is a more light-hearted affair, particularly with the present of a comedy actor among the guest cast. As it is there are few laughs, and as the 7.15 timeslot should demonstrate, The God Complex is back into the territory of Night Terrors. There are scares aplenty in this episode, from the architecture of the hotel reconfiguring itself seeming at will to the presence of a stomping, fearsome minotaur.

This is also an episode in which the Doctor doesn’t seem to be in control, although this will surely be open to question when you reach the end and find out just what the heck has been going on. With some great guest appearances, more wonderful direction and a strikingly emotional ending, however, I hope you’ll join with me in punching the air once again when the Doctor refers to the Nimon.

As with The Girl Who Waited, The God Complex is a must-watch-on-the-night episode, unless you’re willing to be spoilered to hell and back with emails, text messages and Tweets before watching…

Now, to get you in the mood:

Last but not least, our gallery, provided by the BBC:

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

Doctor Who - The God Complex

The God Complex airs on BBC One and BBC HD this Saturday, 17th September at 7.10 pm and on BBC America at 9/8c!


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About the Author


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+.

9 Responses to The God Complex Preview

  1. avatar Rick Lundeen says:

    Please remember that there are quite a few of us out there that like River—(some a lot more than Amy). Only one episode this year featured her, two more had her as fourth banana and another she did a short guest stint. We could easily say this is the Amy Pond show more so than the River Song show. And River hasn’t even been invading this season like Rose did in series 4. Just giving some perspective. :)

    • One episode Rick?! Have you forgotten The Impossible Astronaut, Day of the Moon and A Good Man Goes to War? ;)

      I suspect you’re splitting the series into two, which I simply can’t do. It’s all Series 6, all in 2010.

      However I do firmly believe that this storyline, now three years old, needs to be put to bed, one way or another.

      • avatar Rick Lundeen says:

        Well, I said “one episode featured her”–was “Let’s kill Hitler”, “two more had her as fourth banana” as just part of the gang–that was “Impossible Astronaut” and “Day of the Moon” and “another, she did a short guest stint”—was a good man goes to war”. All series 6 and only one so far that was all about her.

        I think it appears that she’s been around a lot because she’s got a very strong presence but whatever are you guys going to do if she’s the regular companion next year? At least one guy on your podkast–I finally listened —doesn’t even like the show anymore. :( I fear we’re not done with River yet but I’m not tired of her yet. I suspect that her story will probably be wrapping up at the weeding, though.

        • Personally speaking i think she’s a great character, but the way she’s been used seems to be wavering, sadly. ,I’m not as disenchanted as James from the podKast, but I do feel that the whole River/Mels/missing baby Melody situation has been poorly executed. You would expect angst from the parents, and we’re not getting that and haven’t genuinely had it at any point, which feeds back to the use of the character and then leads me to the earlier conclusion

          • avatar Rick Lundeen says:

            I see your point but I *think* we just haven’t seen the whole picture yet and probably/hopefully will by series end. Hopefully!

            I don’t see Moffat as one of these guys who change up the entire story on the fly. I think he’s usually got a plan, even though “Let’s Kill Hitler” certainly seemed a bit loose. If we don’t see the proper closure all the way around by “The wedding of River Song”, I might just start to become a bit disappointed as well. As for Amy and Rory’s reactions, no, they’re definitely not normal at all but at the same time, the situation is totally insane. Having kids myself, I can say that them as parents knowing that she turns alive and well and has an amazing future, seriously goes a long way toward smoothing over certain fears and worry.

    • avatar ChrisL says:

      I agree wholeheartedly!
      There seems to be an undercurrent of anti-River sentiment around these days and I just don’t understand why.

      I certainly prefer her to Amy Pond, in fact I struggle to find any reason to like Amy Pond at all. Amy is selfish, self-centred, shallow and has the morals of an alley cat, whereas River is sexy, mysterious, intriguing and was even prepared to sacrifice herself to save The Doctor on that fateful day in The Library.
      So yeah, give me a River in preference to a Pond every time!

  2. avatar IanM says:

    Since watching the preview clip released a few weeks back, this has to be my most eagerly anticipated episode of the series. Think I’ll refrain from watching the preview clips above and hope I’m not wrong on Saturday night.

  3. avatar Penfolduk01 says:

    For some reason, I can’t help think this is going to end up similar to the Star Trek:The Next Generation episode “Allegiance”.

  4. avatar John Harley says:

    Can’t believe that nobody has mentioned The Nimon yet! Not that this Minotaurian beast looks anything like Robin Sherringham,Bob Appleby or Trevor St.John Hacker’s previous characters! And I’ll bet he doesn’t sound like Clifford Norgate either! He’s got too many horns for a start…

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