Fear Her (2006)

Back in 2005, London was awarded the honour of hosting the 2012 Olympic Games and this planted an idea in Russell T Davies’ mind and he then passed this idea onto Life on Mars co-creator Matthew Graham and the end result is the cheap Doctor Who episode Fear Her. I say cheap because the previous series saw Boomtown use very little in the way of special effects and this meant the money could be used in the finale. Fear Her is much better than the previous episode but it’s not hard to be better.

The main issue that I have with this story is that it’s dull. Granted there are some scary moments and the idea that drawings can come to life is quite an interesting one but sadly it’s not enough to make a show out of. There were some amusing moments such as Rose digging up the council road and the Doctor making everyone put a finger to their lips. I also thought the child was a tad bit annoying. Granted most kids on TV get on my nerves but the thing about the girl in this story was that there was no charisma or personality that came from her. Even when she was herself again there was nothing there which was a real shame.

This is Rose’s story for the first time since her debut adventure. With the Doctor out of the picture (or in it in this case!) it gives Billie Piper the opportunity to wield an axe into a door in a homage to The Shining. She’s the one that works things out and finds a solution to the problems. This isn’t something that happens very often in Doctor Who and it was quite a refreshing change. The only time that the story gets anywhere near entertaining is towards the end when the Doctor is running with the Olympic Flame towards the Torch to signal the start of the games. With just over a year to go before the Games begin, the stuff in the ‘Olympic stadium’ do look a little cheap but seeing as when this was filmed the stadium wouldn’t be built for another four years I think we might be able to let them off for that.

David Tennant doesn’t particularly shine in this episode but he’s not terrible and potters about until he’s required to do his running thing and firework interpreting at the end. I did quite like the bit in the TARDIS when he says that he was a dad once. It was a little nod to long term fans who like me think that Susan as the Doctor’s Granddaughter would of course have had a kid.

The final minute or so is a lovely set up to the finale to the series. The Doctor is able to look into some fireworks and tell that “something’s coming”. It’s an ominous start to the final story. With Matthew Graham set to return to the Doctor Who writing table it’s good to know that when the history of Doctor Who is written for the final time that this won’t be the only thing Graham will be judged on. It’s a cheap episode that unlike the previous year’s adventure doesn’t have any interesting characters and is marginally ahead of Love and Monsters.

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