Blu-ray Review “Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part One”

Starring: Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill, Alex Kingston,
Number of discs: 2
Rated: NR (Not Rated)
Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
Release Date: November 13, 2012
Run Time: 225 minutes

Episodes: 4 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

“Doctor Who” is one of my favorite series on television. I have been a hardcore fan since the first series and have been watching it grown into this now worldwide phenomenon. It is very trending in the US now amongst us nerds or as we are called “Whovians”. Series six was a very tough act to follow, its story line was the most epic yet, which encapsulated the whole series. Matt Smith has really grown on me quite a bit since series five. He is quickly becoming a fav of mine as well. Karen Gillan was a terrific companion for the Doctor in the last two seasons and, get ready “SPOILERS”, if you don’t know this is also her’s and Arthur Darvill’s (plays Rory) last. I am sure that BBC will be releasing a complete series seven at the end of this run but I recommend this release for this who are looking to section it as a turning point in the show. If you are a fan of Doctor Who, this will hold you over till the Christmas 2012 episode and get you psyched for what’s to come in part two.

Official Premise “Join the Doctor, his companions Amy and Rory (aka the Ponds) and numerous friends on their latest escapades through space and time where they puzzle an unexpected invasion of Earth, save a spaceship full of dinosaurs, don Stetsons in a Wild West adventure and are even kidnapped by the Doctor’s oldest foe. The explosive series concludes with Amy and Rory’s heart-breaking farewell a race against time through the streets of Manhattan. Will the Doctor really lose the Ponds forever? There’s only one way to find out.”

Episodes included are: “Asylum of the Daleks”, “Dinosaurs on a Spaceship”, “A Town Called Mercy”, “The Power of Three” and “The Angels Take Manhattan”. “Asylum” was a good season kick-off. I do love me some Daleks. I do not feel that it as epic as season 6’s opener but you can’t always kill the Doctor. “Dinosaurs” was campy and very funny. Great visuals on this one. “A Town Called Mercy” was a fun Western spin the series but with cyborgs. “The Power of Three” was my least favorite of the five and is a big slow paced, cool idea with the cube’s planning a slow invasion but it was a little too slow for me. “The Angels Take Manhattan” was amazingly epic and probably one of my favorite episodes ever. I love the Angels and they literally scare the shit out of me. I also loved Amy and Rory and this is where there story ends.

Jenna Louise-Coleman will joining on as the Doctor’s new companion starting with the Christmas 2012 Special. She was well-placed in “Asylum of the Daleks”, playing Oswin Oswald. I actually really liked her and though she was fun, so I am excited and opened-minded to see where Steven Moffat, the Lead Writer, will take this show in the second half of this season. Moffat was quoted saying that the reason for choosing her what that “she worked the best alongside Smith and could talk faster than him.” Classic reasoning!

The episodes look and sound stunning on Blu-ray. BBC America has finally upgraded to HD (or 720p on TV), so at least now it is watchable but they look even better with their 1080p transfers, and presented in their original aspect ratio: 1.78:1. There are some great special features included in “Doctor Who: Series Seven – Part One”. There are five-part mini-adventure prequel to series seven called “Pond Life”, which puts the Doctor in more situations when attempting to visit AMy and Rory on Earth. There is a “Asylum of the Daleks Prequel” included where the Doctor receives a message from a mysterious hooded woman called Darla Von Karlsen. “The Making of The Gunslinger” shows us the origin of The Gunslinger in “A Town Called Mercy”. Lastly, “The Science of Doctor Who” and “Doctor Who at Comic Con” are great BBC America specials.

Lastly I must give a future nod to an upcoming “Doctor Who” release from BBC. On Nov.20th, the “Doctor Who: Limited Edition Gift Set” is hitting the stories. It comes packed with over 70 hours of “Doctor Who” spread over 41-discs. It is the perfect gift for all Doctor Who fan’s this holiday season. It includes the complete series one-six featuring Christopher Eccleston (the ninth Doctor), David Tennant (the tenth Doctor) and Matt Smith (the eleventh Doctor). It also includes hours and hours of bonus features including three new Doctor Who Specials coming to DVD for the first time ever, a collectible eleventh Doctor Sonic Screwdriver, three original art cards and the comic book, “Doctor Who at Comic Con.” If you are wondering how all this can fit on to one gift set just remember that it’s bigger on the inside than it looks on the outside 😉

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