The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood

Story No. 226 and 227 The Doctor and Alaya
Production Code 1.8 and 1.9
Dates May 22 and 29 2010

With Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill
Written by Chris Chibnall Directed by Ashley Way
Executive Producers: Steven Moffat, Piers Wenger, Beth Willis.

Synopsis: The Doctor, Amy, and Rory arrive in a tiny mining village and find themselves plunged into a battle against a deadly danger from a bygone age.


A Review By Harry O'Driscoll 7/7/10

When I heard that this story would feature the return of some old monsters, I knew this would be tough to get right. After their last appearance, I thought that they would be again depicted as a one-dimensional group of baddies, who were totally evil and it was the Doctor's mission to destroy them. Thankfully after watching it I blew a sigh of relief that they had pulled it of excellently.

The first episode is a bit of a waste admittedly, with everybody doing nothing and the whole thing didn't look like it blew the budget exactly. However, the second episode changes that with some great shots of the underground city which has all the atmosphere of a different world. The whole re-design wasn't great with them looking too human for my liking. However, the added advantage is that they are more individual and much more relatable and credible as characters. The story succeeds wonderfully in showing the two sides , with Eldane coming across as my favourite of the whole story. Of all the characters, he comes across as the most reasonable and the most eager for peace. The conference with him, Amy and Chaudhry is one of the episode's highlights.

The humans in this story are portrayed in an interesting light while actually not coming across definitely as the good guys. Although the aliens had kidnapped several people and Alaya was hardly pleasant, nobody had been killed at first. And then when Ambrose proclaimed "This is our planet" I can hardly blame Restac for wanting to kill her. It works to prove a point that humans are hardly all peaceful and that it was people like Ambrose and Restac who ruined the chance for peace. It's a very good morality story.

At this late stage in the season, we begin to get closer and closer to that finale. In order to avoid spoilers I won't divulge what happens but it makes a very poignant moment that feels like it'll be revisite. The final scene is a very chilling and intriguing moment that leaves you eager to find out what happens in the finale.