Doctor Who

Season 7 Episode 8

Cold War

Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Apr 13, 2013 on BBC America
out of 10
User Rating
161 votes

By Users Episode Review


    Doctor Who "Cold War" Review: That Icy Feeling Not Even Duran Duran Can Fix

    Without the crackle of the Doctor and Clara getting to know each other, a huge bizarro world to explore, or a high-stakes, complex story, "Cold War" left me a little cold.

  • Episode Summary

    In 1983, the Doctor and Clara land on a Russian nuclear submarine trapped beneath the Arctic ice. An alien stalks the boat and threatens to drive the crew to the brink of madness.

    Who was the Episode MVP ?

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    • Good But Unoriginal

      I was really excited when I found out that the Ice Warriors were coming back for the new series of the show, and they brought them back well enough, but the story in general wasn't very great. The story was good and simple but I felt that it was too simple that it just got boring. Also, I don't like what they did with Skaldak in the episode. Throughout most of the first half of the episode, he is tied up, and in the second half of the episode he is not in his suit and is running throughout the submarine and we don't even get to see him very much. I do however like the idea of us getting to see what the Ice Warriors look like under their suite for the first time. I also like it that when redesigning the Ice Warriors they kept all the good things about them and changed all the bad things, like the fact that they talk louder now. And I like it now that they kept the scale design but they changed it so it's metal. That makes the Ice Warriors look much more dangerous and powerful. The story is also good, but like I said before, it's kind of boring and unoriginal. It deals with the main idea of Doctor Who. An alien arrives on earth, the humans attack it, and it thinks all humans are bad. But there's nothing else to the story. Most Doctor Who stories have that main basis and make the episode more original around it, but this episode doesn't do that. The only original thing about it is that it takes place on a submarine. Overall, the episode's fine and good but it could have been much better.moreless
    • Disappointment part deux

      After the first episode back I was so excited to see this new season, but both the story and Matt Smith seem to have used up their magic and are coasting through the last two episodes. Even Jenna-Louise Coleman who was nothing short of magnificent as a darlek in denial has failed to impress which is a shame as I expected from the build up that she would easily outshine the previous companions. The one ray of sunshine being David Warner who did an amazing job of bringing life to a character who was just as 2d and recycled as the rest of the plot.

    • Interesting but slow

      This was a decent episode but hardly great. Growing up during the '60s nuclear stand off I could relate more with this than the younger audience. But as with another review while the premise was interesting the plot plodded along and some parts really weren't too coherent. I don't think it gave either the Doctor or Clara a great vehicle for a great performance and maybe the best performance was from the Russian professor. Not being a Doctor Who expert I do believe these Martian Ice Warriors are a new creation in the Who universe? And the ending reminded me of a couple of scifi movies such as Close Encounters. I'm still hoping for a stand out episode soon rather than just fairly good.moreless
    • How Bad Can It Be

      Very tedious back-and-forth with very little show of the warrior. Clara's been relatively level-headed, but she was very childish and didn't seem to grasp the gravity of the situation in this episode. The plot itself was interesting, but it was rather poorly executed and not exciting at all to watch. I did enjoy the professor, he's very Hartnell (especially when you can't make out his headphones and they look like a bowtie). It would be marvelous to have him along as another companion - the three of them get on rather well. The Doctor's been fairly useless so far this season as well. Perhaps they're setting him up for Smith's exit come end of the year.moreless
    Liam Cunningham

    Liam Cunningham

    Captain Zhukov

    Guest Star

    David Warner

    David Warner

    Professor Grisenko

    Guest Star

    Tobias Menzies

    Tobias Menzies

    Lieutenant Stepashin

    Guest Star

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (5)

      • The submarine's depth gauge is labeled improperly; the dial lists the units as "METEPC", or the word "METERS" transliterated into Cyrillic characters, rather than translated into Russian.  The Russian word for "meters" is "метров," or "metrov" when transliterated into Roman characters.

      • When the submarine surfaces, breaking the ice cover, the diving hydroplanes on the sail are in the horizontal position. All submarines with hydroplanes on the sail rotate it to the vertical position before breaking the ice cover. The edge of the hydroplanes are reinforced and angled for this purpose.

      • The bridge console shows high definition flat-screen plasma displays. In the early 1980s, the equipment used would be CRT displays.

      • When the sub is resting on the ridge at 700 meters (2300 feet) depth, the missiles can not be launched. The maximum launch depth for the Delta III/IV submarines are 55 meters (180 feet).

      • Trivia: The HADS (Hostile Action Defense System) is mentioned for the first time in the series since the 1968 serial "The Krotons."

    • QUOTES (6)

      • Clara: Are we going to be okay?
        The Doctor: Oh, yes.
        Clara: Is that a lie?
        The Doctor: Possibly.

      • The Doctor: A native of the planet Mars. And we go way back. Way back.
        Zhukov: Martian, you can't be serious?
        The Doctor: I'm always serious. With days off.

      • The Doctor: Skaldak won't talk to you. You're--you're an enemy soldier.
        Zhukov: And how would he know that?
        The Doctor: A soldier knows another soldier. He'll smell it on you, smell it a mile off.
        Zhukov: And he wouldn't smell it on you, Doctor?

      • Clara: How'd I do? Was I okay?
        The Doctor: This wasn't a test, Clara.
        Clara: I know. But...
        The Doctor: You were great, yeah.
        Clara: Really?
        The Doctor: Really.

      • The Doctor: Professor, I could kiss you.
        Grisenko: If you insist.
        The Doctor: Later.

      • Skaldak: My world is dead! But now there will be a second Red Planet. Red with the blood of humanity.

    • NOTES (2)

    • ALLUSIONS (0)