Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

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Total Votes : 20

Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Time_Spectator on Mon Aug 29, 2011 4:00 am

Not sure how I should vote this one. Impersonally as a commercial entertainment or how I feel about the premise and production of this particular piece of that enterprise?

River Song is a clever plot with broadly implied characteristics, made a character more through the personification of its performer, Alex Kingston.

It's one way to go about it I suppose. Some people enjoy it fine. Some people would have preferred to have the plot, and therefore in this case, character, delivered upon and moved on some time ago. Just speaking for my two bits, I prefer to say I look forwards to something else ahead. I would not mind if this future 'something else' were less concerned with being a big surprise, so long as the character itself is more involving to me. That would probably help my ability to get more involved in whatever is going on around or about them.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by stanmore on Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:48 pm

You know, I think the worst element of Let's Kill Hitler is the story's complete disinterest in telling the story of the missing daughter. I know distraught parents aren't the easiest characters to bring into a knockabout comedy, but if you want to start the season with Mel Brooks don't end the previous season with a scenario from Cathy Come Home. And then, once you've decided that that you haven't got much time for human interest stories, don't introduce a different one with a few minutes left on the clock... And it's a shame because I like Rory and (controversially) Amy. I want to see that they love their child.
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The Dingdongalistic Review you've all been waiting for...

Post by Dingdongalistic on Tue Aug 30, 2011 2:50 pm

Today I am doing something brave, I'm posting a review before I've read any of the comments on this thread. I hope that will be enough to forgive the tongue-in-cheek title...

Let's Kill Hitler

Apart from an apparent attempt to win the non-existent competition of this year's worst title, this episode also seems to apply the same level of seriousness to its content (at least at first), which cheekily consigns Hitler for the vast majority of it to a cupboard. You would at least have been warned from the beginning, which involves Amy and Rory creating Ledworth's most hilarious crop circle, and then promptly introducing the Doctor to their hitherto undiscovered best friend. Is it uncharitable to start typing the word "ret..."?

However, a lack of seriousness is no guarantee of a bad episode in Doctor Who, and as this one unfolds, it does much to prove this rule. It's by no means flawless, and to my mind suffers from the no. 1 flaw of Moffat's control of the show so far, which is unnecessarily complicated plotlines, and the occasional scene which doesn't make sense even when you've untangled it by the end (I still don't understand why the TARDIS voice recognition system says "fishfingers and custard", anyone on here able to enlighten me?). But it holds together in the end, and works well on an emotional level as well.

It's fair to say that as the episode progresses, the comedic style subtly begins to shift -- that is, the same form of subtlety that the show is so famous for, as the Doctor suddenly becomes poisoned with, naturally, no chance of escaping from a mortal death within 32 minutes. But in fairness, although the plot might twist suddenly from farce to tragedy, the emotional tone of the show changes more organically. The jokes keep pace, and a lot of fun is had with the concept of a human ship run by minature humans (I'm told this is borrowed from a number of places, but what isn't in Doctor Who), and it's only towards the end that you realise the way Moffat is revealing the characters to us, and each other, the final result being sufficiently touching. It's of course never in serious doubt that the series will continue next week, but it's entertaining to follow how it all works out.

7.5/10 from me.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by The Co=Ordinator on Tue Aug 30, 2011 3:07 pm

Good review Dingdong. Nice to see you. Smile

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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Time_Spectator on Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:15 pm

Easily my fav review of it, Dingdongalistic. Appreciative, balanced but not impersonal.

The 'needless complexity' is, I feel, just how Moffat works and he is superb at managing the complexity.

Perhaps the #1 problem with Moffat's tenure is that for a man who is supposed to be a wizard behind a curtain behind 'Doctor Who', minds' eyes sure do a lot of watching Moffat. Before, during and after. One has to dig Moffat first to fully enjoy this 'Doctor Who' or we're smokin' more and enjoying it less. Like when special effects get a bit obvious, the often superb qualities in the stories and characters can end up competing for a lot of viewers' attentions against the mechanics of its creation.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Patrick on Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:43 pm

I just noticed something.

Re-watching it, the "robot" Amy informed the Doctor that the Silence is not a species, but a religious order (apparently waiting for the right question.) So, if you're a religious order, intent to kill the Doctor, and suddenly the Doctor has revealed the Silence's "you should kill us all on sight" command to all of humanity, how do hide from that?

Go "headless" and become monks, perhaps?

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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Patrick on Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:45 pm

Oh, and I would be quite remiss if I didn't say: Dingdong, you have been missed! Great review you offered, and I'll hope we'll be on the receiving end of your contemplations throughout the remainder of Series 6.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Zoltar on Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:46 pm

Dingdongalistic wrote:(I still don't understand why the TARDIS voice recognition system says "fishfingers and custard", anyone on here able to enlighten me?).
Well, the story doesn't make it clear whether it really did say that or the Doctor imagined it while nearly blacking out. My guess would be the voice interface did say it and it was the TARDIS trying to motivate him.

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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Johnstone McGuckian on Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:54 pm

I don't understand why people are still complaining about the River emphasis. Like her or not, her and her back story are clearly an important part of the ongoing storyline and its going to feature. Simple as.

And incidentally, this episode managed to keep the character we've been following for years while adding a whole new layer to her. Some very interesting ideas here and most of them were executed very well. Can't help but think the small people inside the robot will be back at some point.

A very solid 4/5 and a brilliant start to round two of the series.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Time_Spectator on Wed Aug 31, 2011 2:27 am

Johnstone McGuckian wrote:I don't understand why people are still complaining about the River emphasis. Like her or not, her and her back story are clearly an important part of the ongoing storyline and its going to feature. Simple as.

Why does someone else's decision dictate what anybody else thinks of anything? Even though someone else already decided it, you still felt like posting here praising it. Those are your thoughts and other people have theirs. That's why.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Dingdongalistic on Wed Aug 31, 2011 1:03 pm

The Co=Ordinator wrote:Good review Dingdong. Nice to see you. Smile

Time_Spectator wrote:Easily my fav review of it, Dingdongalistic. Appreciative, balanced but not impersonal.

Patrick wrote:Oh, and I would be quite remiss if I didn't say: Dingdong, you have been missed! Great review you offered, and I'll hope we'll be on the receiving end of your contemplations throughout the remainder of Series 6.
Very Happy

Thanks guys, I feel embarrassed at the egotistical post title now. Good to be back.

Zoltar wrote:
Dingdongalistic wrote:(I still don't understand why the TARDIS voice recognition system says "fishfingers and custard", anyone on here able to enlighten me?).
Well, the story doesn't make it clear whether it really did say that or the Doctor imagined it while nearly blacking out. My guess would be the voice interface did say it and it was the TARDIS trying to motivate him.

I'd quite like it if it did just turn out to be his imagination. But I'd also quite like it to be explained in some way, mainly because it was one element too many in a rather crazy story. Still, only a minor misgiving.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Dave Webb on Wed Aug 31, 2011 1:39 pm

Johnstone McGuckian wrote:I don't understand why people are still complaining about the River emphasis. Like her or not, her and her back story are clearly an important part of the ongoing storyline and its going to feature. Simple as.

I quite like River, but here's my current beef with the way things are -

- if we're going to be revealing backstory and spending an episode doing it, I would like it if we learned a little bit more about other things into the bargain. One reason for not being irritated by LKH is that Moffat knows this and gives us a little more about another couple of threads. However...

...in the main, the presence of River tends to detract from the presence of the Doctor and also demystifies him to an extent that I don't particularly enjoy.

For me, it's not a huge deal but I'm sure it gets commented on because people either feel strongly or in a general chorus of approval it's the one thing you can say which hasn't already been said by dozens of others.

Dingdongalistic wrote:(I still don't understand why the TARDIS voice recognition system says "fishfingers and custard", anyone on here able to enlighten me?).

I'd quite like it if it did just turn out to be his imagination. But I'd also quite like it to be explained in some way, mainly because it was one element too many in a rather crazy story. Still, only a minor misgiving.

I'd go with the angle that it's a little nod to The Doctor's Wife, and it's the TARDIS stepping up once again to help the Doctor. Although, of course, other interpretations are certainly possible. Having him imagine it works equally well, and in some ways fits quite nicely with Amy's original backstory.

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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Zoltar on Wed Aug 31, 2011 1:56 pm

Dingdongalistic wrote:I'd quite like it if it did just turn out to be his imagination. But I'd also quite like it to be explained in some way, mainly because it was one element too many in a rather crazy story. Still, only a minor misgiving.
I think the ambiguity of the moment was intentional. Wouldn't surprise me if it was touched on again in the future though.

Dave Webb wrote:I'd go with the angle that it's a little nod to The Doctor's Wife, and it's the TARDIS stepping up once again to help the Doctor. Although, of course, other interpretations are certainly possible. Having him imagine it works equally well, and in some ways fits quite nicely with Amy's original backstory.
I think the musical cue played during the scene was a variation of the same one used during the end of The Doctor's Wife, when the Doctor asked "Are you there?" to the TARDIS. I do agree either take on it works.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Lee Carey on Sat Sep 03, 2011 2:51 am

My delayed review-- new baby and all that

Loved the episode itself: reminded me very much of New Earth, from the surface level of humour hiding what is really a character piece about the transformative powers of trust and example, to the text folding into itself by the stories end.

It also answers that age old question "What would you do if you had the power to kill a young Hitler" in a fittingly Doctor Who fashion: killing isn't on the table, the Doctor would try and turn a psychopath into someone better. And proceeds to do so by creaing River Song out of the abused husk of Melody Pond. And make no mistake, Melody is an abused child, to the point that the only way to survive is recreate herself.

I loved the way the Tesselecta is the latest in a long line of Tardis substitutes (see also the Pandorica and House) that show the superiority of the original model. This one travels in time, is bigger on the inside than out and has the ability to blend into its surroundings. But its operators view the world in too much of a blinkered fashion: they go around solely to punish. For all the Doctor's habit of finding trouble and fighting monsters, he's really out to see the universe and have fun. Torture isn't his style.

Finally, there's Moffat's continuing exploration of the theme of abandoned children: Melody inherits her mothers role of losing her parents and replacing them with myth of the Doctor. But she's a dark mirror of her mother, as the stories told her aren't only the stories of his ability to care by Amy, but also the Silence's goblin trickster. Fittingly, that very love for her parents changes the programmed killer.

Yes, there is a possible flaw: I agree that there should have been more emotion at the end upon the realisation by Amy and Rory that, because they are all now in a fixed narrative, infant Mel's rescue now looks to be impossible. But the story has yet to finish, and that could still change And there's also the realisation that, in their own way they did raise her. But it's a minor criticism.

Like much Doctor Who over the past few years, Let's Kill Hitler is an audacious piece of writing that resembles nothing else on television. And silly with it. Exactly what I remember from watching the show in my childhood, which does make me ask what some of the critics of the modern era who proclaim this is nothing like the Doctor Who of their youth were watching. The Tomorrow People, maybe?

4/5
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Patrick on Sat Sep 03, 2011 8:49 am

Lee Carey wrote:I loved the way the Tesselecta is the latest in a long line of Tardis substitutes (see also the Pandorica and House) that show the superiority of the original model. This one travels in time, is bigger on the inside than out and has the ability to blend into its surroundings. But its operators view the world in too much of a blinkered fashion: they go around solely to punish. For all the Doctor's habit of finding trouble and fighting monsters, he's really out to see the universe and have fun. Torture isn't his style.

Now that's a point I hadn't considered, but it makes perfect sense. Great review, Lee. I am curious as to what caused you to deduct a point and give it a 4.

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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Guest on Thu Sep 08, 2011 12:53 pm

Let’s Kill Hitler, garners a 4/5 purely because it was at least fun in the main. Even if The Moff did decide to throw any kind of seriously coherent storytelling out of the window along with River when she jumped from Hitler’s office.

Although having said that can anybody seriously point to a place this season where newcomers could jump on-board and genuinely NOT feel totally confused and alienated by the on-going storyline? What the hell happened to accessibility? What year is it – 1987?
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

Post by Lee Carey on Fri Sep 09, 2011 2:30 am

The Eocene wrote:Although having said that can anybody seriously point to a place this season where newcomers could jump on-board and genuinely NOT feel totally confused and alienated by the on-going storyline? What the hell happened to accessibility? What year is it – 1987?
Er, The Impossible Astronaut; The Curse of the Black Spot; The Doctor's Wife; The Rebel Flesh; Night Terrors?

Even a Good Man Goes To War and Let's Kill Hitler have little enough backstory that they are easily explainable by watching the "Previously On" clips.

By that logic, Army of Ghosts; Gridlock; Daleks In Manhattan; the Last Of The Time Lords three parter and around half of series four and the End of Time should alienate the casual viewer because they are all built around characters, concepts and story arcs introduced previously in the series.

The ratings would also seem to suggest that the casual viewer is still watching and, in all honesty, Moffat has yet to pull off a continuity heavy team up like The Stolen Earth/Journey's End-- something that relied not only on previously watching Dr Who but its two spin off series as well.
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Re: Rate "Let's Kill Hitler"

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