Doctor Who: The Face of Evil

The episode “The Face of Evil” from the Tom Baker era is famous for introducing Leela as the Doctor’s companion. For those interested in the show’s treatment of religion, it is also famous for its content. It originally bore the title “The Day God Went Mad.” The Doctor lands on a planet where remnants of [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: The Happiness Patrol

The Doctor Who episode “The Happiness Patrol” provides a wonderfully tongue-in-cheek exploration of the nature of happiness and of society, at times functioning as a parable, at other times engaging in wicked satire – as when the dictatorial ruler of the colony, Helen A, herself responsible for requiring happiness of the population, speaks of the [Read More...]

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Religion in Star Trek and Doctor Who: From a Gallifreyan God to the Enlightened Enterprise

Jim Linville has shared a poster from the upcoming Research in Religious Studies Conference that the University of Lethbridge is hosting in early May: I wonder whether the attendees will be mostly people indifferent to science fiction, people who think the topic sounds interesting, or will be such die-hard fans of Star Trek and/or Doctor [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: The Time Meddler

The Doctor Who episode “The Time Meddler” concluded the second season in the show’s history, and it represented another major first: in it, the Doctor and his companions encountered another time traveler, who it is eventually discovered has a TARDIS of his own and is from the Doctor’s own world. Apart from the Doctor and [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: Fury from the Deep

The episode of Doctor Who “Fury from the Deep” says goodbye to Victoria Waterfield as the Doctor’s companion, and says hello to a new companion for the first time that would remain with the Doctor down to the present day: the sonic screwdriver. This episode features the TARDIS landing on water, and the Doctor, Jamie [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: The Web of Fear

The Doctor Who episode “The Web of Fear” marked the return of the Yeti and the Great Intelligence, and the introduction of a character who would become a regular feature of the show in years to come: then Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart. The episode, in fact, has been considered the prototype for the main type of episode [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: Remembrance of the Daleks

Remembrance of the Daleks: Thus far in the Sylvester McCoy era, this is the episode that has made me feel most like the show I am watching is still Doctor Who, and the character played by Sylvester McCoy is still the Doctor. Bringing the classic enemies back, the Daleks, was a good move, as was [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: Dragonfire

The Doctor Who episode “Dragonfire” is probably the first Sylvester McCoy episode I saw – at least, it is one of the few that I remembered distinctly (if not entirely accurately). The episode introduces Ace and says farewell to Mel as the Doctor’s companion. The amusing premise is that a criminal names Kane has been [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: Delta and the Bannermen

“Delta and the Bannermen” is another Doctor Who episode from the Sylvester McCoy era that seems to be unsure what sort of story it wants to tell. Doctor Who has always combined the serious and terrifying with the comical, but “Delta and the Bannermen” only rarely seems to achieve and effective balance. Some love it, [Read More...]

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That TARDIS Looks Like a Confessional

From The Far Left Side. The official stance of the Catholic church is that evolution occurred, but there are certainly promoters of pseudoscience among Catholics (think Denyse O’Leary). And so this seems like a rather complimentary cartoon about Catholicism, depicting the church going to such great lengths to promote mainstream science and convince skeptics among [Read More...]

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Doctor Who: The Enemy of the World

The Doctor Who episode Enemy of the World from the Patrick Troughton era is something of a first, an episode that is more like a James Bond movie than any of the typical scenarios in which the Doctor and his companions typically find themselves (and I was pleased to find that I wasn’t the only [Read More...]

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