Doctor Who 7×07 The Rings of Akhaten Review

I needed some time to process my feelings for the episode. What can I say about The Rings of Akhaten? This episode has split the fandom in two, with half saying they weren’t very impressed and the other desperately trying to sway that half back into the ‘DOCTOR WHO CAN DO NO WRONG’ camp. At least according to Tumblr.

Now I’m not saying I didn’t like the episode, nor am I saying it was the best one out there. It was interesting, giving us a multitude of aliens that might have blown the prosthetics budget well out of the water for the rest of the season, but at the same time not giving us much at all.

I don’t know, it was the first ‘let’s go on an adventure’ episode for Clara and the Doctor and I thought it was going to be a lighthearted one. I suppose in some ways it was, it wasn’t too heavy on overarching story arc save for hints about Clara’s identity, as well as a dip into her past. However I know that with this show the one thing it is always abundant in, is feels. And that’s what a great show should always strive to achieve, right? Whether it’s laughter, anger or joy a great show will make you feel something. It’s what any great piece of art, or literature manages to do, that is to incite in you some sort of emotion.

The idea that these aliens would die if this ‘grandfather’ god were to wake up and swallow everything in it’s path so they try to keep it asleep by singing to it sounds simple enough. However the episode’s adventure storyline is rather unnecessarily complicated, with singing priests and young Queens and the gathering of everyone to watch and waking him up but no it’s not him it’s just his alarm clock! Although the moment where everyone joins together to sing in order to save their own asses, as well as help the Doctor out, was heart whelming.

And don’t get me started on Matt Smith’s delivery of his speech to the pumpkin god. If anyone had ever doubted his acting chops. Of course Clara, already in possession of the quality that all companions who travel with the Doctor have, won’t leave without helping in any way she can. Even if that means giving away her mother’s ring as a form of payment for a crappy space scooter.

Now, the good stuff, when we look out for subtle hints of what’s to come/the mystery behind Clara’s reincarnation/existence?

The Doctor’s followed her story from the beginning, well the start of her parents’ relationship. That started with a killer leaf, yeah the one that in the end saves the day because of the endless possibilities it symbolised, the countless outcomes of days Clara’s mother could have lived but did not because she died. When Clara realises he was there the day of her mother’s funeral she’s a bit taken aback, understandably. Interesting to note the date of Clara’s mother’s death, as a number of people have, as being related to the day Rose started traveling with the Doctor. Yes? No? Crackpot theory?

The TARDIS rejects her when she tries to get in with Mary to escape. It harkens back (teehee) to Captain Jack Harkness and the trouble he had with trying to get back into TARDIS that one time, oh my days, and they ended up at the end of the universe! Oh my day indeed or should I say, oh my stars?

Sound off with your own theories in the comments, don’t leave me hanging!

Special Mentions:

– The Doctor says he’s only got the Screwdriver when Clara points out that in all his years surely he’s got loads of things that have sentimental value. Rule number one, the Doctor lies. This guy just doesn’t want to give up any of his keepsakes of former companions. I mean, he still wears Amy’s glasses.

– Um, did anyone else think the huge god thing looked like a melting pumpkin? Just me? Okay.

– What’s up with the TARDIS not translating everything for us?

– Apologies for the delay- I have no excuse.


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