*From Episode 2×07 – The Idiot’s Lantern*
[Scene: The Doctor and a young boy named Tommy are chasing after this week’s “Big Bad” during the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth in June 1953 and a police officer tries to get in the way and stop them]
Copper: Hold on now. Where do you think you’re going?
Doctor flashes his psychic paper without even stopping
Copper: Oh sorry sir… um shouldn’t you be at the Coronation?
Doctor [shouts]: They’re saving me a seat.
Tommy: Who’d he think you were?
Doctor [glances at his Psychic Paper]: The King of Belgium apparently.
Okay, so it made me laugh.
But so did pretty much all of season two. There were a few episodes that felt somewhat bland, and a few that were absolutely brilliant (The girl in the fireplace for one). Compared to Season One, I think the pacing was slightly better. Season one had a very static feel to it, which was probably due to the story arc (and the producer’s decision not to stray too far from the norm while reintroducing the characters/series). Season Two’s arc had a lot more action and a much faster pace. Though, I think there were times when they overused the whole Torchwood name dropping a little too much, primarily in The Impossible Planet/Satan Pit stories. I can understand they want to have some strong ties to the Doctor Who franchise, but at the same time, it seemed like it was just Name dropping for the sake of name dropping. I can see the writers now, “Hrrm. what shall be their motivation… oh I know let’s make them this era’s Torchwood operatives.” Just seems like sloppy writing if you ask me.
Of the second season I think my favourite ones were: The Girl in the Fireplace because it was such a great story, School Renunion because of the nostalgia… okay it was solely because of K-9, and despite the end result, I liked the Army of Ghosts/Doomsday storyline. The first cybermen arc felt a tad flat to me and despite their being a few funny bits in Love & Monsters, it felt like it was a last minute pastiche episode. The rest of the episodes were fair to middling. I liked them, but they just didn’t jump out at me.
Of the two Doctors, as much as I liked Christopher as #9, David Tennant really shines as #10 and I think of the two of them, I prefer him as the Doctor. He’s rediscovered the manic joyfulness and mischievousness of earlier incarnations (specifically #2 and #7 and to a lesser degree #4) and that tempers what’s left of #9’s bitterness over losing his home planet. He still has that wide-eyed wonder regarding humanity, and coupled with the aforementioned joy, it makes #10 comes across as a much more likeable character. He’s still a tough cookie though and for all his playfulness and joie de vivre, he can be hard as nails under the surface. As he so aptly puts it in School Reunion, “I’m so old now. I used to have so much mercy. You get one warning, that was it.”. I really look forward to see how they develop him and to see how the loss of Rose will effect his outlook.
Anyway, two very big thumbs up for season two. Now Bring on Torchwood and Season Three bitches!