Doctor Who
The Hungry Earth

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: B | 3 USERS: B-
Taffy Was A Thief
In a hurry? Read the recaplet for a nutshell description!

So "Amy's Choice" was pretty good, and "Vincent" is going to be fairly awesome, and "The Lodger" is probably the best episode of this show I've ever seen, barring or perhaps equal to old Redfern and the Family of Blood. Which means things are about to get real awesome, but also means we have to slog through this effing mess first. I'll try to be nice, but honestly it's so stupid that it's offensive, and it's so offensive that it's just stupid, and between those two options I don't know which is more of a turnoff.

So come with me now to Cwmtaff, ten years hence in 2020, where apparently people are still not sick of The Gruffalo. Or maybe it's having a resurgence, and Spike Lee will be making an unloved and vastly underrated movie of it, starring people from HBO shows of the future. The story is about a little mouse that goes through the forest scaring off predators by pretending to be friends with the imaginary creature the Gruffalo. He's like Mark Ruffalo, but even more annoying.

At the end there's a twist because he meets the Gruffalo and he is real, but the mouse is still awesome and leads the Gruffalo through the forest and all the aforementioned predators go running off due to the Gruffalo, who is so dumb he thinks they're all afraid of the mouse, and eventually becomes afraid the mouse will eat him. (Essentially, gruffalo gruffalo gruffalo gruffalo gruffalo.)

I guess there's something to be said here about creatures preceded by their own propaganda, the way our fear leads us to do abstractly stupid things like run screaming from a tiny mouse or, in this case, threaten genocide all over the place and generally act like assholes. But the story is itself so reductive -- and racist, and sexist, and generally ill-devised -- and childish that it's like having a literary reference to Goodnight Moon show up in the middle of Pat The Bunny. Not too many aspiring Northrop Fryes in the under-tens. Particularly not in South Wales.

Meet Elliot Northover, child, and his father Mo. They are both fairly obnoxious but we'll dispatch with them soon enough. They are struggling to read the Gruffalo book, but Elliot's got dyslexia -- which never stopped anybody from doing anything, not even being an annoying pint-sized twit -- and Mo... I don't know about Mo, why he struggles with the Gruffalo so, but I do know that he A) Married this lady Ambrose, who is just the worst as you'll see, and B) takes the book with him to work. Like for his personal enjoyment.

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Doctor Who




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