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“Mummy on the Orient Express” – Doctor Who Review

Posted on October 13, 2014 at 10:25 am by Darth Shiva

mummy on the orient express 2

Hello all, and welcome to another weekend!  That means Doctor Who and starting tomorrow The Walking Dead!  With mummies today and zombies tomorrow, this weekend is feeling overly Octoberish!  Spoilers ahoy!

doctor-clara-orient-recapAfter last week’s episode (“Kill The Moon”), it looked pretty solid that Clara was done with the Doctor.  Based on his reaction, and confusion as to what her issue with him was, it looked as though the rift between them could never be repaired.  This time, several weeks have passed and Clara has agreed to go on one last adventure, a final journey before saying goodbye to her life as the Doctor’s Companion.  They arrive on an (almost) exact replica of the Orient Express, with the added bonus that this one is in space, so Clara gets dolled up in true flapper fashion, and off they go for a fun and easy (well as far as Clara is told) trip on a train hurtling through space.

dw-series-8-mummy-on-the-orient-expressShortly before they arrive, one of the passengers, an extremely elderly woman starts shrieking that there is a mummy on board, to which no one else can see and as we watch a clock tick down on the screen, we see that when it hits zero, the woman is killed by a foe only she can see.  Since she was over 100 years old, her death is quickly chalked up to a heart attack with delusions and that explanation satisfies everyone but the Doctor, who notices that there are a lot of experts in their fields of study on board and begins to talk to a professor about a legendary mummy known as the Foretold.  After a kitchen staff member is killed in the same way as the old woman, the Doctor will not be deterred from investigating his hunch that the legend is real and on board.

Doctor Who Episode 8We see that Clara showing signs of regretting her decision to be done with the Doctor while on the phone with Danny.  Even though she is adamant about their parting and her eagerness to have this final hurrah and then come back to Earth, she feels bored and restless in her room because none of the usual danger and excitement is happening.  Once off the phone, she goes looking for the Doctor and when she realizes he is not in his room, follows the granddaughter of the first passenger that died, who is acting strangely.  In true companion fashion, Clara and the woman immediately become trapped in a room, and Clara ends up venting about her feelings regarding the Doctor, and realizes that she’s not quite as over him as she believes.

doctor-who-season-8-episode-8-mummy-on-the-orient-express-s08e08Soon after, the Doctor and remaining passengers find out that they were brought to the Orient Express as an experiment to capture the mummy or die trying (Gus, their interface doesn’t really seem to care which).  The Doctor and other scientists must find out the key to the Foretold before they are killed by it.  The Doctor shows to Clara again his inability to feel compassion and forces Clara to lie for him in order to help him find out the information he is looking for.

doctor-who_series-8_episode-8_looking-back-on-mummy-on-the-orient-express-4Many times we do not realize what we care about until it’s gone, and it seems as though the same is true for the Doctor.  He has spent so much of his incarnation this time distancing himself from humanity and more specifically, Clara, that I believe he convinced himself that he truly didn’t care about any of it.  However, once Clara reveals to him that she can never truly hate him, but still cannot be with him anymore because of who he has become, he seems to realize what he is truly losing.  He seems to realize that a companion cannot just be replaced with the next person (we see this with Courtney, Clara’s student) and because of that, behaves in a way that is much more the other Doctors we know and love.

dannyOf course, that coin has two sides, and Clara who has been content to leave the Doctor to his own devices, has a substantial change of heart and tells him that Danny is cool with them traveling together (big fat lie!) and the addiction to dangerous situations that Clara accuses the Doctor of having seems to have taken hold of her as well.  Will this last or will her relationship with Danny end up winning out?

I give this episode a solid B.  Fun Halloween feel with everyone dressed up and who doesn’t love a good mummy? This also delves into the lies we tell the ones we love and whether or not it is justified or acceptable. Also, an easter egg for the fans! Do you know what it is? 🙂

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