Doctor Who

Season 4 Episode 9

Forest of the Dead (2)

Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Jun 07, 2008 on BBC America

Episode Fan Reviews (28)

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out of 10
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  • On perhaps several levels, Steven Moffat shows us the shape of things to come.

    I was moved by the last episode, Silence in the Library, because it was so damn creative, so much better than most everything else out there. For the first 20 or so minutes, while I was enjoying this episode, I thought "where's the creative inventions that littered the first episode?" Then the resolutions started rolling in:

    How to escape the cliffhanger from last episode?
    Who the girl in the computer is?/Who is CAL?
    Where did the inhabitants go?
    What happened to Donna?
    What's with the sonic screwdriver? And yet other things didn't get revealed:

    What's the Doctor's relationship with River Song?
    What's the Doctor's name?

    Will these questions be answered? Maybe. Moffat shows great understanding in that idea that a writer should give the audience what they need; not necessarily what they want. He luxuriates in the fantastic, defying our expectations up to the end. Yeah, I guessed the library was "saving" the lost persons. Not everything has to be a total twist. And yeah, Moffat does tend towards abstract villains (nanoparticles, machines, time eating statues, and carnivorous dust) and twice now has "nobody dies" endings. That's okay, because while you are reacting to these things, Moffat has moved on and invented something new that you've never seen or never seen coming and that's yet absolutely perfect, such as "She knows my name." If Moffat invests in Season 5 half the creativity and humanity as these two episodes, we are in for a treat--let's hope the other writers get inspired. Unlike Coupling or The West Wing, Dr. Who isn't a one man show. What Russell T Davies has lacked in some individual episodes, he's more than made up by being an outstanding showrunner--someone with vision for each character, episode, and (most impressively) season.