The first ever episode of Doctor Who I ever saw was ‘Girl in the Fireplace’ by Steven Moffat. It is still my absolute favourite episode ever made, and I very much doubt anything would change that. I thought the 50th Anniversary episode might have managed it but while it is a close second, I can still remember the wonder I felt as the Doctor flitted between space and France, and the heart ache of Madame De Pompadour’s letter to the Doctor. Nearly ten years and that feeling still wells up inside me when I think about it; superb writing and a very well made episode.
That little obsession aside, David Tennant is what people would call ‘My Doctor.’ I think Christopher Eccleston is fantastic (pun intended), but Tennant is my favourite Doctor. Series two changed from series one because of the re-generation of the Doctor; one was a bit grim as the Doctor coped with the aftermath of the Time War, but in two the Doctor is more alive, has more hope and is a happier person because Rose has helped him heal.
Series two is a rollercoaster ride of emotions though, especially the finale. I still get a bit emotionally whenever I hear the score by Murray Gold, especially the track ‘Doomsday’. The series didn’t hold back on dealing with complex feelings, and while it certainly started in series one with episodes like ‘Father’s Day’, from the moment David Tennant came on screen in the Christmas Invasion to the very end of his reign as the Doctor, the show was a brilliant education in emotions and how to deal with them.
Tennant was a happy but also tortured Doctor and as a show primarily aimed at children, he showed a range of emotions for children to see and understand, and learn how you go about being an emotionally mature person. When it comes to Rose, she loses her Doctor right at the beginning of Tennant’s reign and at the end of the series he loses her. Loss is a part of life and it is hard, but it would be harder to kids to understand if they had never encountered it before, which is why I will always respect the decisions about not sheltering children from the sometimes harsh truths of life.
Again the two part series finale is a given. This one of my favourites that Doctor Who ever made, so I couldn’t recommend it more highly. Same with ‘The Girl in the Fireplace’, which if you’ve read this far you know I adore.
School Reunion though brings back Sarah Jane, a companion of the classic Doctor Who, and her developing relationship with Rose in this episode is hilarious from start to finish. It is also a great bit of foreshadowing for what will eventually happen; Rose can’t be with the Doctor forever.
Another favourite of mine, because it has a bit of a creepy twist is Mark Gatiss’ ‘The Idiot’s Lantern’. The episode is very well written and I love the no nonsense attitude that everyone has with the sexism.
Love and Monsters is notable for being a Doctor and Companion light episode. It isn’t the greatest episode ever made but the sentiment behind it and Marc Warren is great.