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ShowDoctor Who / Series VII / Episode 10
First Broadcast2013/04/21 - 19:30 (Link: ABC Details)
Related LinksDoctor Who Wiki Wikipedia
Previous EpisodeCold War
Next EpisodeJourney To The Centre Of The TARDIS

A claustrophobic episode that centres around a ghost story. The Doctor drops in, apparently to assist, but in reality he's simply continuing to try to understand the mystery of Clara. A reasonable episode, better than the last two anyway.

Clara and the Doctor arrive at the haunted Caliburn House to assist a ghost-hunting professor (Alex Palmer) and a gifted empathic psychic (Emma Grayling) who are searching for the Witch of the Well. Her apparition has appeared throughout the history of the building.

Alex is a returned war hero who has bought the house to ensure his work is not stolen again. He is trying to get objective proof of the ghost, but objective equipment can't record her, so he is using Emma and her psychic abilities. The Doctor assists with the hunt. He finds the coldest spot in a room, draws a circle around it and the instruments go crazy. A rotating mirror appears and the apparition is visible.

The Doctor has a theory and uses the TARDIS to prove it by taking photographs of their location over the six billion year history of Earth. Clara admonishes him for not being affected by seeing the entire history of Earth. For Clara, she becomes a ghost, moving from not even born yet to dead. In response, the Doctor tells her she is the only mystery worth solving.

The Doctor's theory proves correct. The apparition is not a ghost, but rather a time traveler named Hila Tukurian, trapped in a pocket dimension where time moves very slowly. Every second for Hila is one hundred thousand years pass in the normal world. The photographs demonstrate she is running.

The Doctor hatches a plan to rescue her. Hila makes it back, but the Doctor is trapped in a frightening place. Clara pleads with the TARDIS to let her in so they can go rescue him. The TARDIS responds with its voice interface in the image of Clara, which is odd. Eventually the TARDIS lets Clara in and the Doctor is rescued. Later the Doctor realises there is a crooked man and woman separated across the dimensions and the process is repeated and they are reunited.

Emma realises that the Doctor didn't come to the house for the ghost, but rather for her. The Doctor asks her about Clara, but Emma just sees an ordinary girl, pretty, clever and more scared than she lets on, but ordinary. The Doctor remains puzzled about Clara. Emma, earlier, warned Clara about the Doctor though, he has a sliver of ice in his heart.

Interesting bits:

  • The TARDIS appears to dislike Clara and vice versa.
  • There are several references to previous Doctors:
    • The crystal used by the Doctor to amplify Emma's psychic ability is from Metebelis III, visited by the 3rd Doctor (although the pronunciation differs here).
    • The Doctor is sure he had somewhere to hang Clara's umbrella - a reference to the 4th Doctor's hat stand perhaps?
    • There's a reference to the eye of harmony from the 4th and 8th Doctors.
    • The orange suit was worn by the 10th Doctor in The Satan Pit and on Mars.
    • The 10th Doctor and Rose referenced Ghostbusters as Clara did in this episode.
  • A couple of great lines:
    • The professor's love sticks out like a big chin.
    • Ignorance is ... what's the opposite of bliss? Carlisle.