Countdown to new Who: Doctor Who Series 3

“You 
Are 
Not 
Alone”

There’s something perhaps a bit perverse in some of the strongest episodes of new Who emerging from the series which (arguably) had the weakest companion. Freema Agyeman was ill-served by writing that couldn’t let her be a companion in her own right, as opposed to the-one-in-Rose’s-shadow, and consequently never felt entirely comfortable in the TARDIS.

Series 3 has real highs and certain lows – the introduction of Doctor-lite episodes (to ease the production schedules) produced the inventive wonder that was Blink (and further proved Steven Moffat’s genius), the unashamed grab for the heartstrings was perfectly realised in the Human Nature / The Family of Blood double-header, and the re-introduction of one of the Doctor’s most enduring foes was well-judged. That said, we also had the inevitable return of the Daleks who already feel like they’re in danger of over-exposure.

Continue reading “Countdown to new Who: Doctor Who Series 3”

Review: Two Into One, Menier Chocolate Factory

“There’s far too much sex in this hotel and I’m not having any of it”

The things I do for Josefina Gabrielle… Whilst I am more than happy to revisit the Chocolate Factory once Gabrielle joins up in the major cast change soon, I had to be dragged to the Menier Chocolate Factory to see her in Ray Cooney’s Two Into One, my natural aversion to farce meaning I was more than happy to give it a miss. But a cheap deal on tickets plus the promise of gin saw me head out on a Sunday and have the slightly depressing inevitability of my preconceptions being proven right.

If we’re to believe scions of our national press, this is “a classic farce” and if we don’t like (or the genre as a whole), we’re “sourpusses…more to be pitied than censured”. Which says it all really. If you’re of a certain generation, as much of this audience was, and brought on a certain style of humour, then Ray Cooney will be right up your street. And a thirty year old political farce which makes no concession for the time past since it was written will more than likely have you chortling down the aisles. Continue reading “Review: Two Into One, Menier Chocolate Factory”