Doctor Who S07E08 – The Rings of Akhaten


Neil Cross pens this week’s episode which sees Clara the impossible girl (Jenna-Louise Coleman) leaving the planet for the first time, having decided to go with the Doctor (Matt Smith). It’s a story of lullabies, memories, stories and the lives of those we miss and lost.

While still not the strongest episode of this series I do like how Clara continues to develop, as well as her relationship with 11.

Arriving on the Rings of Akhatan, Clara comes across little Merry (Emilia Jones), the Queen of Years, a young girl who knows every song, story and legend of the people who live in the rings. With Clara’s faith in her, she goes to perform The Ceremony, designed to keep The Old God asleep, instead of wreaking havoc on the solar system.

travelsAs things so often do, they go wrong, or perhaps Merry was always meant to be sacrificed.

Of course The Doctor and Clara race to her aid, keep mouth-filtered goggle-eyed monsters at bay, and was it me or did they change from saying “Merry, where are you?” to “Clara, where are you?”

There’s a red herring monster a rather frightening fellow sitting atop an enclosed throne… but apparently he’s only the Big Bad’s alarm clock.

Now I don’t want to ruin anything… but now that the Akhatan sun is gone, how will the people survive. The Doctor didn’t even address it! I know he wouldn’t leave them there to die, and he obviously stayed long enough to reclaim Clara‘s ring, but nothing about the continued existence of life in the system!


Still, I like the way Clara is developing as well as the possibility that the TARDIS doesn’t like her.

I do like The Doctor confronting the Big Bad, and that single tear running down his cheek as he rails against it, talking about all the things he’s seen and done…

doctor1I don’t necessarily need answers about Clara yet, and I honestly don’t expect them until the end of this series, but I do find myself hoping that the stories get to be a little stronger. While I am swept up in the new relationship between Doctor and Companion, and the sheer delight he seems to be taking in showing her all the new things in the universe around her, neither of the two adventures so far have seemed particularly engaging.

Hopefully that gets amended soon, the fact that next week’s story is set on a submarine does delight me, I do love a good claustrophobic tale set under the water…

I do love the story of the leaf, page 1 of Clara’s 101 places book. That is wonderfully romantic and sweet.

We learn that The Doctor has been watching Clara’s life from before she was even born, seeing how her parents met, the leaf, and meeting Clara as a young child.

I think he’s done this to examine every part of her life, to try to find out anything he can about her, who she really is, and why she’s popped up and died a few times now…

What did you think of it?

Doctor Who airs Saturday nights on Space!

cold war


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