Monday, July 08, 2024

Going Over to Sutekh's House

Oh, I didn't write any more about the 2024 series of Doctor Who after all. Oops.

Oh well. I enjoyed it anyway.

I thought the finale, "The Legend of Ruby Sunday"/"Empire of Death", was very good, and there was lots to love. Bonnie Langford's Mel almost stole the episode, and confirmed how wasted she was in her original episodes. Sutekh himself came across very well and I quite liked the "controversial" cgi jackal form, which did much better "acting" than you tend to get in cgi monsters, even more so at this sort of budget level.

It was a bit disappointing that the Doctor defeated Sutekh in basically the same way he did it in the original story, even though that didn't work, as the episode explains, but I'll probably be long dead and unable to complain the next time the villain appears so I'll allow it. I did chuckle when he was defeated with a lead and a whistle. Jackals aren't quite dogs, but close enough for the pun to work.

It was also a bit naff that Sutekh's attack was more or less the Blip from Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, which was not helped by the turning-into-sand visual effect, or by the episodes being broadcast on Disney+, but I can let that pass. Let's call it an homage.

(Although one difference was an almost throwaway line that suggested Sutekh's victims remained conscious after being "dusted" which is nice and creepy... but alas not at all explored.)

I have seen a lot of claims about the Doctor's solution to the not-Blip also undoing the Flux, bringing Gallifrey back, and so on. I don't think there's direct evidence of that, and all that was undone was Sutekh's Sands of Death™ attack, but there's enough ambiguity there that I could see it being used as a mechanic to bring back any dead characters or locations in future stories.

My only real problem with the finale is that everything builds up to the Doctor going to find his granddaughter Susan at long last -- it's even explored in the dialogue! -- and then he... doesn't. It's a very odd creative decision, that.

I do have one final observation. If Sutekh has been hiding inside the TARDIS since 1975, then...

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