Who Review: The Long Game
Review: By Tom Toaduff
Episode Written By: Russell T Davies
Director: Bryan Grant
I seem to fall into the small category of people who actually remember this episode, whenever I mention the Jagrafess or heck, even Simon Pegg being in Doctor Who, not many people remember it. I’m gonna get the negatives for this episode out the way first, and though I do like this episode, I have some...problems with it. First of all, the episode felt rushed. I believe it could have done with being a two-part episode, give some character development to Adam (He was only introduced the episode before and we don’t know a whole lot about him. I get that we find out he isn’t as nice or as clever as he first seemed, but we could have got some detailed character development in there) and the Editor, despite being one of my all time favourite villains in Who, he could have had some character development.
I wasn’t a huge fan of the Jagrafess either, but hey, the story wouldn’t have worked without it either.
So that’s all the negatives over now, now on to some positives. I love this episode for many different reasons, and one of those is that it isn’t a big, blockbuster type episode. It is very similar in structure to the Classic Who episodes, to me it brought back some of the elements of Tom Bakers era. The mystery behind the episode, the horror (the skeletons they find are pretty reminiscent of Classic Who), and things like that. Another brilliant thing about the episode for me is the great Simon Pegg, who portrays the villain in this episode, the Editor. Well, not the main villain, we’ll get to that in a minute. Pegg is known by many for his role in the TV series Spaced, or the Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy, consisting of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and the Worlds End, who he also starred alongside future Doctor Who guest Nick Frost (Santa Claus, a minor role at the end of Death in Heaven and a main role in Last Christmas). Pegg brings along his trademark humour and act, while also being menacing and quite evil, despite not even being the true villain of the episode.
(SPOILERS BEGIN ) No, the main villain is the CGi monster who resides on the ceiling, the Jagrafess. Or, to give his full title, the Mighty Jagrafess of the Holy Hadrojassic Maxarodenfoe. We’ll go with what the Editor calls him, Max. Max isn’t even in this episode for a lot, and yet it is still one of the most memorable villains of modern Who. Maybe he isn’t remembered for all the reasons I remember him for though, many people pointing out that he is a bit pointless and is just a pile of goo with a mouth, and okay, the CGi isn’t brilliant, but I still found Max to be a menacing foe for the Doctor. Max is the true controller of Satellite Five, and is practically the boss of the Editor. He is defeated rather quickly, but the surprise twist of Max being the true evil and not the Editor was rather commendable. (SPOILERS END)
So there we have it, a well written, well directed, well acted episode of Doctor Who which I think will be remembered in the future as being a “modern classic”.