Hi there. It was bad enough when Americans had to wait two weeks after the UK for the new episodes, and even worse when that became 3 weeks. But now BBC America is taking a 2 week break, bringing the gap to 5 weeks, which is ridiculous. Because I admittedly write these in conjunction with the UK airings, I refuse to wait 5 weeks to post the reviews and will now continue to post these at the already in place 3 week delay. Really, what kind of fan service is that? Not only making loyal US viewers wait 5 weeks, but have the audacity to ruin the episodes with frequent commercial breaks and edits; really, it's pitiful. Not to mention that my current cable provider won't offer BBCA. Sorry for the ranting, inconvenience and potential spoilers, but this is basically out of my control.
After the greatness that was "Vincent and the Doctor," I'd be surprised if the show could have two great episodes in a row, especially when Doctor Who writing regular, Gareth Roberts ("Planet of the Dead"), is at the helm; not that he's a bad writer, it's just... his episodes are never my favorites, especially "Planet of the Dead".
Episode 11 - "The Lodger"
This episode opens up when the TARDIS has some trouble landing, and leaves the Doctor stranded somewhere in England (Wiki says Colchester, I forgot... my bad), and Amy alone in the malfuntioning TARDIS leaving her basically absent for most of the episode... let's see if Matt Smith can pull off an episode without his trusty and amusing companion. Without the TARDIS available, and only able to communicate with Amy via an unexplained headset that he just happens to be wearing, the Doctor must try to act like a normal human, and takes residence in a vacant apartment, run by a man named Craig (James Corden, from Gavin & Stacey). But that's not the strange part; in the same building, a voice has been calling out to passers-by and leading them in to a mysterious room where they soon meet their demise.... booooooweeeeeeooooooo!!!
There really isn't much for me to say about this episode, it's much like Doctor Who: The Sitcom, where nothing really happens except for chatting in an apartment with some little events here and there. There's a lot of fan service in the episode though, from pictures of Van Gogh on the fridge, the Doctor making wacky food combination, playing football (or soccer, for those that don't know) in a #11 jersey... in Episode 11 (!), images of Doctors 1, 2, 4, 9 and 11, and for the ladies: a practically naked Matt Smith.
But other than all that, I wouldn't call the episode anything special, but there was at least some cool things to see. And, the relationship between the Doctor and Craig was certainly an amusing one. All in all though, it was a bit odd having Amy not around for most of the episode; Matt Smith definitely can still pull off being the Doctor all alone, but the chemistry between he and Amy is what's really made this latest series enjoyable, so it definitely felt off. Hey, it was still better than "Victory of the the Daleks," and hopefully next week's episode, the first part of the series 5 finale, will blow me away again.
Overal Score: 7.8/10