Thursday, November 1, 2012

Doctor Who-The Vampires Of Venice
                     At Rory Williams bachelor party,the Doctor appears from a cake in lieu of a stripper and announces Amy and his kiss earlier. He then takes both Rory and Amy aboard the TARDIS to what he has determined to be an ideal honeymoon spot: late 16'th century Venice. However not all is as it seems. Seems a boat builder named Guido has sent his daughter Isabella off to a girls school overseen by Signore Rosanna Calvierri,the cities patron from where none of the students ever seem to emerge. Thrown off by the announcement that the bubonic plague,thought long gone for over a century is still present in the city,the Doctor and his two companions soon both find themselves menaced by vampires. Or so they think. Teaming up with Guido,desperate to locate Isabella,it soon becomes apparent that Signore Calvierri and her supposed Vampire cohorts are in fact using the cover of a vampire for something far more sinister. Intent on finding out more,the Doctor sends Rory and Amy into the school to present Signore Calvierri with a false ID via psychic paper so that Amy can worm her way into the school and discover the truth.

                What she discovers is that the Signore is not only immune to the psychic paper but that she and her son are in fact fish-like hemavore extra terrestrials,and that the students in the school are in fact becoming the same. Isabella,who met Amy a bit earlier,enters the chamber and helps Amy escape-only to be forced by the Signore later to sacrifice herself. To who however? Forced to escape the army of pursuing hemavores however,Guido is forced to sacrifice his life. Upon meeting with Signore Calvierri alone after,the doctor is able to ascertain she is one of the last survivors of the now dead world of Saturnyne,which was apparently absorbed into the same cracks in the fabric of time menacing Amy and is attempting to re-populated the Earth as a new colony for her people. The plan is not only to flood Venice but to use their hemovoric abilities to repopulated their female population since apparently only their males can live on Earth. After attempting to unleash a massive electrical storm on the city,the doctor is able to sneak past the distracted Signore in time to power down the generator causing it with the help of distractions from Rory and Amy which end up killing the other surviving Saturnyne's left in the city. When Rosanna herself sacrifices herself as the last surviving member of her race,the Doctor prepares to leave Venice while asking Rory to join him and Amy on his travels,after which Rory happily agrees.

                      In addition to the implications of the "crack in the universe" running through this season,two very important plot points run through this extremely well written story that also benefits from being visually historically accurate and stunning. On both fronts,from Rosanna Calvierri and Rory Williams the Doctor is basically accused of putting himself into a conflict of interest. Even though the preservation of the Saturnyne people would mean the end for the people of Venice,if not not itself,the analogy is drawn by her to how the Doctor handled the extinction of his own people. Rory draws up a parallel idea about how the Doctor tends to bring people such as himself and Amy into his adventures,and occasional misadventures in order to ingratiate himself and get people to like him. In the end though,through the way in which he handles the situation in Venice and goes out of his way to protect both Rory and Amy,there's a resolution to this. Not to mention his pained regret at Rosanna's self sacrifice after her plans fail. There's also plenty of room for humor here,including some mild sexual innuendo between the Doctor and Rory in their adventures together. Also the Doctor pulling what turns out to be a "library card" featuring a photo of the face of first doctor William Hartnell adds yet more humor and historical continuity to what amount to one of the best episodes of Matt Smith's debut season as the intrepid time lord.
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