OK, so, this is the end of the Seventh Doctor’s first serial. We should maybe have a good grasp on the new guy by now. Now what?
Well, for one, this Doctor saved the day in a very Doctorish way, even if the Rani’s plans were…really out there. Fire a missile to destroy a certain asteroid, which would destroy the planet she was on but she wouldn’t be there for that. Instead, she’d harvest the power there to allow herself the chance to control evolution, keep the dinosaurs alive but eliminate humans, and then control time and space or something.
Since her bat-minions were included in the destruction, they don’t take too kindly to that and though she escapes in her own TARDIS, the bat-people are in there to take her back to their own homeworld where she presumably never left. The Rani’s only other TV appearance was in the “Dimensions in Time” special and…yeah, that’s all I am going to say about that for the time being.
So, with some quick thinking, clowning around, and a kind heart, the new Doctor stopped the missile, saved the San Diego Chicken people, and scared the Rani off. Mel did a lot more screaming, and in the end, he’s going to use the TARDIS to return all the brilliant scientists the Rani kidnapped to do her math work for her. Einstein seemed really interested in how the TARDIS worked.
Is the new Doctor a step up or down? Hard to say at this point. He’s still got a bit of the mental fuzziness that seems indicative of a new regeneration, and Sylvester McCoy is still playing up the more comedic aspects of the character than anything else. Still, I usually prefer sillier Doctors, so that doesn’t bother me too much. Doctor Who is a ridiculous concept. It should, as a program, embrace the ridiculousness. So, for now, I’d say maybe a minor step up, but there are a lot more stories to go through first, and Mel, well, she probably has a lot more screaming to do.