Peter Capaldi as the Doctor Season 10 Episode Nine Empress of Mars

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Peter Capaldi as the Doctor Season 10 Episode Nine Empress of Mars

Sum­mary: Will Mars be the newest edi­tion to the 19th Cen­tury British Empire or vice versa

Plot: To the sur­prise of NASA the mes­sage “God Save the Queen” is dis­cov­ered on the sur­face of Mars spelled in rocks. The Doc­tor Bill and Nar­dole go to inves­ti­gate and while the TARDIS decides to head back to Earth with Nar­dole on board the Doc­tor and Bill find a detach­ment of 19th Cen­tury red coated British infantry who accom­pa­nied an Ice War­rior back to Mars, the Brits are look­ing for wealth but the Mar­t­ian is look­ing for his queen. Will the both find what they are look­ing for and can they co-​exist or will the first inter­plan­e­tary war be between the armies of two Empresses?

— — — — — — — — — — — –

Writ­ing: The episode is a mixed bag, there are a lot of inter­est­ing twists but also a good sup­ply of stereo­types, par­tic­u­larly con­cern­ing the sol­diers of the British Empire. Yet the plot con­cern­ing the clash of empires works, and the Doc­tor Dilemma know­ing what the future of both Mars and the Ice War­riors are is par­tic­u­larly inter­est­ing. Fur­ther­more we haven’t, at least on TV, seen much if any of female Ice War­riors which makes another inter­est­ing twist. It was also a very Vic­to­rian ending.

Act­ing: The best job here belongs to Adele Lynch’s Empress Iraxxa although her voice sounds a tad like the Queen of the Rac­noss. There is also Matt Lucas’ Nar­dole and Michele Gomez Missy who both do an excel­lent job. Pearl Mackie is very cred­i­ble and of course Capaldi is Capaldi. I thought Fer­di­nand Kings­ley but I sus­pect he was writ­ten that way. The rest of the British foot sol­diers are cred­i­ble in their parts, stereo­typ­i­cal as they were.

Mem­o­rable Moments: Friendly aliens, Of course I can fix the TARDIS, Well you are vic­to­rian, Sur­rounded by males

Doc­tor Who Flash­backs: Alpha Cen­turi of Peladon Fame (3rd Doc­tor Curse and Mon­ster of Peladon) amaz­ingly voiced by Ysanne Church­man at age 92 who last voiced the role back in 1974. The por­trait of Queen Vic­to­ria is the actress who played her oppo­site the 10th doc­tor (Tooth and Claw)

Odd­i­ties: The weapon that ties the men into knots seems kind of cool but very imprac­ti­cal. Also I’m pretty sure I remem­ber Nar­dole being able to fly the TARDIS.

Pet Peeves: I would think that once the first shot bounces off the Mar­t­ian Armor some­one might have thought of aim­ing at the exposed face and throat?

Great Quote(s) via chakoteya​.net transcripts

God­scare: Don’t move. I’ll sort this beg­gar out.
The Doc­tor: No, no, no, no! You don’t under­stand. This crea­ture is no threat. He may look like a mon­ster to you
God­scare: I wasn’t talk­ing to you.

— — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — -

Bill: What, you can deal with big green Mar­tians and, and, and rocket ships, but you can’t deal with us being the police?
God­scare: No, no, no, no, no. It’s just such a fan­ci­ful notion. A woman in the police force.
Bill: Lis­ten, yeah? I’m going to make allowances for your Vic­to­rian atti­tudes because, well, you actu­ally are Victorian.

**********************************************

God­scare: Your Majesty, I have a request, if that may be per­mit­ted.
Queen Iraxxa: Speak!
God­scare: That man was not one of us. Please, do not judge mankind by his cru­elty or indeed by my cow­ardice. Spare my friends and my world.
Queen Iraxxa: Your request does you credit, sol­dier. It will be con­sid­ered.
God­scare: God save the Queen.
British Troops: God save the Queen!
Queen Iraxxa: You will die with hon­our, with brav­ery, and in the ser­vice of those you swore to pro­tect.
God­scare: Thank you. You don’t know what that means. Thank you.
Queen Iraxxa: But not today. In bat­tle, sol­dier. To die in bat­tle is the way of the war­rior. Pledge your alle­giance to me and my world, and I will ensure you have the oppor­tu­nity.
God­scare: My life and my ser­vice are yours. [kneels] To the end.
Queen Iraxxa: To the death, my friend. To the death.

**********************************************************

Final Ver­dict: 4 12 stars another good episode

Rank­ing of Sea­son: 3rd of 8 That makes 4 episodes in a row that were of the nor­mal stan­dard I would expect from the series as opposed to what we got at the start. Let’s keep the trend going.

1st Extremis
2nd The Lie of the Land
3rd Empress of Mars
4th The Pyra­mid at the End of the World
5th Knock Knock
6th Oxy­gen
7th Thin Ice
8th Smile
9th The Pilot

Top 10 Rank­ing in the Capaldi Era: Doesn’t place but not by much likely 11th if I went that low

1st The Hus­bands of River Song
2nd. Last Christ­mas
3rd. The Care­taker
4th Extremis
5th. The Return of Doc­tor Mys­te­rio
6th. The Girl who Died
7th. The Witch’s Famil­iar
8th. Hell Bent
9th. Mummy on the Ori­ent Express
10th. Face the Raven

Summary:   Will Mars be the newest edition to the 19th Century British Empire or vice versa

Plot:  To the surprise of NASA the message “God Save the Queen” is discovered on the surface of Mars spelled in rocks.  The Doctor Bill and Nardole go to investigate and while the TARDIS decides to head back to Earth with Nardole on board the Doctor and Bill find a detachment of 19th Century red coated British infantry who accompanied an Ice Warrior back to Mars, the Brits are looking for wealth but the Martian is looking for his queen.  Will the both find what they are looking for and can they co-exist or will the first interplanetary war be between the armies of two Empresses?

———————————–

Writing: The episode is a mixed bag, there are a lot of interesting twists but also a good supply of stereotypes, particularly concerning the soldiers of the British Empire. Yet the plot concerning the clash of empires works, and the Doctor Dilemma knowing what the future of both Mars and the Ice Warriors are is particularly interesting.  Furthermore we haven’t, at least on TV, seen much if any of female Ice Warriors which makes another interesting twist.  It was also a very Victorian ending.

Acting: The best job here belongs to  Adele Lynch’s Empress Iraxxa although her voice sounds a tad like the Queen of the Racnoss.  There is also Matt Lucas’ Nardole and Michele Gomez Missy who both do an excellent job.  Pearl Mackie is very credible and of course Capaldi is Capaldi.  I thought Ferdinand Kingsley but I suspect he was written that way.  The rest of the British foot soldiers are credible in their parts, stereotypical as they were.

Memorable Moments: Friendly aliens, Of course I can fix the TARDIS, Well you are victorian,  Surrounded by males

Doctor Who Flashbacks: Alpha Centuri of Peladon Fame (3rd Doctor Curse and Monster of Peladon) amazingly voiced by Ysanne Churchman at age 92 who last voiced the role back in 1974.  The portrait of Queen Victoria is the actress who played her opposite the 10th doctor (Tooth and Claw)

Oddities: The weapon that ties the men into knots seems kind of cool but very impractical.   Also I’m pretty sure I remember Nardole being able to fly the TARDIS.

Pet Peeves: I would think that once the first shot bounces off the Martian Armor someone might have thought of aiming at the exposed face and throat?

Great Quote(s) via chakoteya.net transcripts

Godscare: Don’t move. I’ll sort this beggar out.
The Doctor:   No, no, no, no! You don’t understand. This creature is no threat. He may look like a monster to you
Godscare: I wasn’t talking to you.

——————————————————————-

Bill:  What, you can deal with big green Martians and, and, and rocket ships, but you can’t deal with us being the police?
Godscare: No, no, no, no, no. It’s just such a fanciful notion. A woman in the police force.
Bill:   Listen, yeah? I’m going to make allowances for your Victorian attitudes because, well, you actually are Victorian.

**********************************************

Godscare: Your Majesty, I have a request, if that may be permitted.
Queen Iraxxa:  Speak!
Godscare: That man was not one of us. Please, do not judge mankind by his cruelty or indeed by my cowardice. Spare my friends and my world.
Queen Iraxxa: Your request does you credit, soldier. It will be considered.
Godscare: God save the Queen.
British Troops: God save the Queen!
Queen Iraxxa: You will die with honour, with bravery, and in the service of those you swore to protect.
Godscare:  Thank you. You don’t know what that means. Thank you.
Queen Iraxxa:  But not today. In battle, soldier. To die in battle is the way of the warrior. Pledge your allegiance to me and my world, and I will ensure you have the opportunity.
Godscare: My life and my service are yours. [kneels] To the end.
Queen Iraxxa: To the death, my friend. To the death.

**********************************************************

Final Verdict: 4 1/2 stars another good episode

Ranking of Season: 3rd of 8  That makes 4 episodes in a row that were of the normal standard I would expect from the series as opposed to what we got at the start.  Let’s keep the trend going.

1st Extremis
2nd The Lie of the Land
3rd Empress of Mars
4th The Pyramid at the End of the World
5th Knock Knock
6th Oxygen
7th Thin Ice
8th Smile
9th The Pilot

Top 10 Ranking in the Capaldi Era: Doesn’t place but not by much likely 11th if I went that low

1st The Husbands of River Song
2nd. Last Christmas
3rd. The Caretaker
4th  Extremis
5th. The Return of Doctor Mysterio
6th. The Girl who Died
7th. The Witch’s Familiar
8th. Hell Bent
9th. Mummy on the Orient Express
10th. Face the Raven