Doctor Who – Blink

by Alan Rapp on March 8, 2013

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: Doctor Who – Blink
  • tv.com: link

“Don’t blink. Blink and you’re dead. They are fast, faster than you can believe. Don’t turn your back. Don’t look away. And don’t blink. Good Luck.”

Doctor Who - Blink

With this being the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who you can expect to see reviews of old episodes of the series pop up on the site from time to time. Ask anyone to list their favorite Doctor Who episodes from the new series (2005-present) and you can be sure “Blink” will show up at or near the top every single time. Not only did the episode win multiple awards, but in a poll by Doctor Who Magazine it was chosen as the second best episode of Doctor Who ever made.

“Blink” stands out for several different reasons. First, it’s one of the few episodes of Doctor Who not from the perspective of The Doctor (David Tennant) or his companions. Aside from the videotaped loop, The Doctor (David Tennant) and Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman) only make a single appearance before the episode’s epilogue. Second, it introduces an exciting new villain to the series: The Weeping Angels (a race of quantum-locked aliens who turn to solid stone when they are being observed). Third, it’s a damn good mystery. And finally, the episode introduces the world outside the UK to a young Carey Mulligan who would hit it big a couple years later earning an Oscar nomination for her leading role in An Education.

The episode begins with Sally Sparrow (Mulligan) taking pictures in an old house and discovering an impossible message written decades earlier under the wallpaper just for her. Returning to the house with her best friend Kathy (Lucy Gaskell), Sally gets a pair of surprises. She receives a hand-delivered letter from a man (Richard Cant) claiming to the grandson of Kathy, who has just been transported by the Angel’s touch back to 1920. In the letter Sally is tasked with explaining the situation to Cathy’s lazy brother Lawrence (Finlay Robertson) who works at a video store and has stumbled an unusual Easter Egg on 17 unrelated DVDs (which just so happen to be all of the DVDs Sally owns) featuring The Doctor participating in one-half of a conversation.

Sally shares her story with a Detective Inspector (Michael Obiora) who shows her an entire underground parking lot of cars left at the same abandoned house, and a certain blue telephone box, all of whose owners have never been heard from again. The detective has his own run with the Angels, and before you know it Sally is sitting at the hospital bed of far older version of the man who stays alive just long enough to see Sally one last time before and deliver a message from The Doctor.

Doctor Who - Blink

Discovering the Easter Egg was meant for her alone, Sally and Lawrence head back to the abandoned house with a portable DVD player and plenty of questions. This time when The Doctor provides one-half of the conversation, Sally provides the other. Working together Sally and Lawrence desperately try to keep all four Weeping Angels in view, and find a way to get to the TARDIS and return it to The Doctor without turning away or even blinking. The episode ends with Sally and Lawrence meeting The Doctor a year later, but earlier in The Doctor’s timeline who has absolutely no idea what she’s talking about. Sally provides The Doctor with all the information about her adventure, completing the bootstrap paradox and allowing Sally to finally move on with something closer to a normal life.

Although the series has attempted to bring the Weeping Angels back, first in the Series 5 two-parter, and later in “The Angels Take Manhattan,” they’ve never worked as well as they do here. Providing someone else with a mystery to solve to save The Doctor (and all of the universe) makes the episode unique, and the video from 1969 and the inherent oddness of the Angels themselves gives the episode a terrifically creepy feel.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Don't Blink March 27, 2013 at 6:23 pm

Best. Episode. Ever.

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Art March 28, 2013 at 6:41 pm

So good. When I introduce friends to Doctor Who this is always one of the episodes I tell them to watch first.

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lauren January 16, 2014 at 4:46 am

Great episode!

Reply

jade February 22, 2014 at 12:25 am

One of my all time favorite episodes.

Reply

coach August 20, 2017 at 11:48 am

Thank you for another magnificent review.

Reply

supertiger2340 June 22, 2018 at 11:32 am

One of the angels dabs

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