Doctor Who, series 7, episode 10 – Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS

If I have to describe this episode of Doctor Who I would say it’s intense. Very intense. The fans that watched the series 7 so far noticed by now that the Tardis and Clara did not understood too  well… Or, at least, not as the Doctor would have liked… teasing from one girl to another being something normal lately (the last few episodes). That’s probably why the Tardis was impersonated by a woman last season, in The Doctor’s wife.

So the Doctor let Clara pilot the Tardis once, a test to make them deal with each other, a mistake that let some scavengers recovering lost abandoned ships to target the blue box that was apparently lost in space and to take it out. The 3 brothers Van Baalen from the salvage ship get the damaged Tardis inside and try to get inside. The succeed only when the Doctor convince them to save Clara, trapped and in danger, offering them the most valuable salvage of their lives.

Doctor’s power of persuasion is matched only by the lies he uses to force the Van Baalen brothers to do their best in saving Clara: he stars a false auto destruct mechanism setting it for one hour, then it reduce the time period to 30 minutes because of the protests. He would reduce it again to 15 minutes if his new prisoners would protest again. The danger is not small: the toxic gases and fire fill entire Tardis sections, unknown creatures (at least in the beginning) hunts the people inside. Even the self destruct was false, the Tardis engine overloaded and it was about to explode (as the Doctor discovered to some point). That’s why I said the episode was very intense (and funny from time to time, especially because of Clara): the heroes does not stay for a moment, many times the action does not stop and it’s very alert, and the surprises are not just a few.

The references about the interior of the Tardis are many spread all over the last 7 series, the library being somewhere next to the pool, the old control rooms being kept in storage, safe, etc. In this episode we did not get to the pool, but we visited (with Clara’s help) the building sized library. The Time Lord’s companion find out the name of the Doctor, preparing so the season 7 finale (The name of the Doctor), but she might not remember this essential element to the end of the episode. The solution found to solve the problems is rather familiar to the ones watching the 5 series and know about the cracks in time through the moments in the time, present and future are leaking.

I don’t want to insist about another details, it remains for you to watch the episode to find them out. But the solution to solve the problem is very simple and elegant, allowing space for mystery and other questions.

Director Mat King, writer Stephen Thompson, producer Marcus Wilson, executive producers Steven Moffat şi Caroline Skinner.

Cast: Matt Smith (Eleventh Doctor), Jenna-Louise Coleman (Clara Oswald), Ashley Walters (Gregor Van Baalen), Mark Oliver (Bram Van Baalen), Jahvel Hall (Tricky Van Baalen).


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