Doctor Who: Season 6, Episode 7

A Good Man Goes to War (4 Jun. 2011)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Drama | Family
9.0
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Ratings: 9.0/10 from 2,055 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 5 critic

A member of The Doctor's team has been abducted and he will call in every favor and maybe even go to war to get him/her back.

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, (characters: "Cybermen"), 4 more credits »
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Title: A Good Man Goes to War (04 Jun 2011)

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Dan Johnston ...
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Joshua Hayes ...
Lucas
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Richard Trinder ...
Annabel Cleare ...
Eleanor
Henry Wood ...
Arthur
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Storyline

The Doctor, Amy and Rory face a terrifying battle to save not just the Earth, but the entire universe, as the battle of Demons Run begins. With the Silents in control of the TARDIS, and the Alliance in pursuit of the Doctor, it seems the Last of the Time Lords only has one choice - will he really give the life of his companion to save the world? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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4 June 2011 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Alex Kingston filmed her roles in two days. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
["Demon's Run"]
Amy Pond: [to her baby] I wish I could tell you that you'll be loved, that you'll be safe, and cared for, and protected, but this isn't the time for lies. What you are going to be, Melody, is very, very brave.
Madame Kovarian: Two minutes.
Amy Pond: But not as brave as they all have to be, because there's somebody coming. I don't know where he is, or what he's doing, but trust me: he's on his way.
["Twenty Thousand Light Years Away"]
Amy Pond: [continuing, V.O] There's a man who's never going to let us down, and not...
[...]
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Connections

Featured in Doctor Who Live: The Afterparty (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Doctor Who Theme
(uncredited)
Written by Ron Grainer
Arranged by Murray Gold
Performed by BBC National Orchestra of Wales
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User Reviews

 
Don't Make Me Angry. You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry
11 June 2011 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

Reginald Heber was a Church of England bishop in 19th Century India. He is best remembered for his hymns, notably "From Greenland's Icy Mountains". So well-known was his work that Rudyard Kipling quoted them in his poetry.

Another of Heber's hymn's was "The Son of God Goes Forth to War" and that, despite some backstory here, is the source of the title of this episode. Its reference speaks of a constant problem of writing for Doctor Who. With his powers and abilities far beyond mortal man's, he often appears godlike.... but you can't really say that directly in a children's sf TV show, so we have substitutions, like young Amelia Pond praying for help only to have the Doctor show up. She prays to Santa Claus, a secularized image. However, that hidden reference to divinity is still there.

In this episode, the Doctor goes Old Testament, calling in favors from across the Universe to rescue his chosen friend. In a series of anecdotes that show off Steven Moffat's hairpin turns between humor and thrills, we see this being, who destroyed his own people, rush through the millennia and the universe to recruit help. Lorna Bucket, a child of the Gamma Forests who met the Doctor and left, because he was the only interesting thing that ever happened there; Dorium Maldovar (the fat blue guy who swapped River Song her vortex manipulator); Commander Strax, a Sontaran who has been degraded into being a nurse; and a horde of good guys and bad guys, all of whom get a few seconds to shine -- there are no small parts, only short one.

Only Alex Kingston as River Song is a bit underwritten. Her role this time is to carry a big part of the plot and she executes, as usual, wonderfully, including her answer, finally, to the question first raised three years ago: who is she? As usual, since he has taken over as producer, Steven Moffat stuffs an enormous amount of story and character and humor into this episode. All the vignettes, all the jokes, all the characters make the viewer think the plot is going one way, until suddenly it goes another. A fine ending to the spring season, with a fine cliffhanger ending to keep me coming back.

As a final note, let me express my admiration for the growth of Rory Williams as a character. When first seen, he was a stammering, nerdy nurse in a hospital -- a role usually filled by women -- being hectored by a woman doctor. After disappearing for half a season, he showed up again, and seemed to spend his time being henpecked by Amy Pond and being killed in alternate episodes.

However, I have come to the conclusion that Rory is the key character for this series. Since the Doctor's return in 2005, his companions have been women. We are meant to see the Doctor through their eyes and they serve as a surrogate for the audience. However, Rory keeps growing in stature and ability. I begin to suspect that it is Rory I want to be when I grow up.

The seven episodes that have made up the spring season of Doctor Who this year -- there will be another six in the fall -- have been well integrated. We have seen the issues that make up the arc of those seven episodes raised constantly, making this clearly more of a mini-series than a series of connected stories. The three episodes by Moffat have been fast, well paced and full of his usual good humor and terror, and the episode by Neil Gaiman, "The Doctor's Wife" is among the best in the history of the franchise. The other stories have had their faults, there is no doubt, but they have made decent change-of-pace intervals. With the core of excellent actors, an enthusiastic team of behind-the-camera talents and an enthusiastic fan base, I look forward to many more seasons of the Man from Gallifrey.


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