13 Random Thoughts On Doctor Who: Wild Blue Yonder

Doctor Who Wild Blue Yonder

Me, have opinions on Doctor Who: Wild Blue Yonder? Who could have seen that coming? Oh yeah, that’s right, everybody.

The second of three Doctor Who “Specials” marking the show’s 60th anniversary is now available to view (reminder: I’ve written up that guide for Australian viewers here)

And if you want my thoughts on The Star Beast, they’re right here.

But I will once again note that I really HATE spoilers, and I LOATHE the concept that percolates in some online circles that if you have something spoiled for you, it’s somehow your fault for daring to be online.

I find it’s much easier to try — at least try — not to be a jerk.

As such, I’m not posting my thoughts until after the Godzilla Minus One trailer that sits below. Scroll below that, and you’re taking the spoilers on board (and I’m assuming you’ve watched Wild Blue Yonder, too.)

No prizes for guessing what I also saw this weekend.
It’s rather good — see it in a cinema if you can. Again, no spoilers!

Spoiler Section: Doctor Who: Wild Blue Yonder

So, once again I’m not going to recap Wild Blue Yonder, because I’m presuming you’ve watched it by now, like I have — a couple of times, in my case, because I am that kind of fan, and have been for decades and decades now.

So as with last week, instead, have 12 random thoughts, in no particular order:

  1. WE GOT WILF! And, as I predicted, I both cheered and shed a tear, especially as (reportedly), it’s the only scene Bernard Cribbins was able to film before his untimely passing. But still, WILF!
  2. That drone shot where they show the spaceship spinning on the edge of the universe: I’m not the only one who thought “…and the name of the place was Babylon 5” am I?
  3. Some nice work re-using sets to minimise costs (as well as obvious green screens), but it didn’t feel to me like it had a logical order for where the Doctor and Donna were running when they got separated, which did rather remove some of the logical peril for me. Especially as I’m pretty sure the way Donna was shouting and then moving, she would have run to the back of the ship, not the front, and the Doctor the opposite.
  4. I can’t quite decide if having a bottle episode that’s basically corridor chases is a lovely homage to classic Who tropes, or a really strange choice to use an entire special on. This felt sort of like a mash-up of Midnight, The Rebel Flesh, even a little of The Face Of Evil, too, which just didn’t make it feel all that “special” to me. Well, Wilf notwithstanding, of course.
  5. The Captain was some kind of horsey-sheep alien, based on that skull. Odd then, that the spaceship didn’t seem to have too many hoof-compliant controls, save for the buttons.
  6. The whole “Mavity” joke fell pretty flat with me — it felt shoehorned in, didn’t really factor into the plot, and I guess it’s now canon that Donna’s changed the name of gravity in the Whoniverse. Which makes prior stories where it’s clearly “Gravity” kind of awkward, all in service of a fairly dumb joke.
  7. The body horror bits mostly worked well… except when they didn’t, like the crab-scuttling Tennant with his face staring out of his posterior, which bordered into the farcical… and more obviously false.
  8. How did the robot get so rusty if it was just walking down a corridor for three years in a sealed spaceship?
  9. I liked the “sorting out which is the real Donna and/or Doctor” scenes — and Tennant and Tate do a lot of good work in these… the first time it was done. Felt a little lazy in a padding sense to run them so many times in the same episode, though.
  10. I’m a sucker for any callbacks to the HADS, largely because it’s a callback to The Krotons, which is a Patrick Troughton story. Pat’s my favourite Doctor.
  11. Not so sure about the callbacks to the Timeless Child and the Flux — especially as the whole issue of how much of the universe was “destroyed” by the Flux is still something of a plot hole across Who generally.
  12. If the not-Donna was 99.99% identical except for a minor flaw in the wrists, then why didn’t she and Donna answer the “Mrs Bean” question the exact same way?
  13. (Additional post-watching thought) I’m not sure the whole “Tardis translation’s gone because the Tardis is gone” works within the established Canon. The Tardis has been gone before in situations where The Doctor and The Doctor’s companions haven’t suddenly lost language skills…

This was… OK. I definitely preferred The Star Beast, and I think that’s because it’s just so similar to many other Who stories.

Also, it felt a bit more like something that’d be a mid-season episode you’d make because the rest of the budget for other actors or similar was running a little thin. That wasn’t the case here, and while I enjoyed it, I do hope that The Giggle, the third episode, is a little better.

You are, naturally, free to disagree below.

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1 thought on “13 Random Thoughts On Doctor Who: Wild Blue Yonder”

  1. Kathleen Powell

    The Doctor/Tennant scuttling reminded me of a disturbing deleted scene from The Exorcist. At that stage, imitation Doctor and Donna interactions were already a little psychologically freaky, so why not have a nod to evil possession as well?
    I liked the psychological horror aspect that harked back to Classic Who & Nu Who stories. It did feel like there was a lot of running around when the dialogue could have gone deeper, but that may have been a bit much for some. And Wilf! I was hoping there would be more Wilf scenes in The Giggle, but I’ve also read this was the only scene Cribbins could do. The episode being dedicated to Bernard Cribbins also indicates we won’t see any more scenes with Wilf. At least The Doctor and Donna got to see Wilf, which is where they were heading in the first place.

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