In Review: Doctor Who (S1 – EP5) – Dot and Bubble

The world of Finetime seems happy and harmonious. But an awful terror is preying on the citizens...
Dot

Synopsis: In Dot and Bubble a world of Finetime seems happy and harmonious. But an awful terror is preying on the citizens. Can the Doctor and Ruby make them see the truth before it’s too late?

 

Story

Dot and Bubble is a dystopian sendup of social media addicts. Which features unlikely heroism. As well as unexpected villainy from Lindy Pepper-Bean (Callie Cooke). As she sacrifices the heroic Ricky September (Tom Rhys Harriesto save her own skin. There is a great buildup of tension that is sustained throughout. Indeed, the giant slug threat was well done and had me on the edge of my seat. Viewers witness a Doctor who is ultimately powerless to save Finetime’s citizens from their own stupidity. Additionally promoting reading as an alternative to social media which was nicely done by RTDI loved the Heartstopper reference when the Doctor met Ricky September also. It was also very jarring when Lindy could barely walk without the dot and bubble.

 

Acting

Ncuti Gatwa was phenomenal in Dot and Bubble. Showing us the Time Lord’s kindness, intensity, heroism and impotent anger. As Lindy and the other citizens refuse his help. The Doctor’s line “BUT YOU’LL DIE!” was superbly delivered by Gatwa. And was a great counter to the fakery that Finetime’s inhabitants address each other with. Gatwa was heroic when delivering 15’s exposition and showed spectacular rage when it became apparent. That he could not help anyone. Gatwa’s facial expression when he knew that Lindy had made the wrong choice was so well acted. Callie Cooke delivered Lindy’s childishness and terror very well. Cooke also had a great reaction to the slugs. And a really good response to seeing them eat her friends. Cooke’s panic at not remembering what the Doctor told her was excellent too. Tom Rhys Harries was very likable as heroic pop star Ricky September. Which made Lindy’s betrayal have all the more impact. Millie Gibson complimented Gatwa’s Doctor well. Showing Ruby’s affability and courage.

 

CGI

Dot and Bubble’s CGI was good. If a somewhat generic dystopian portrayal. The slugs were top notch and really brought terror as Lindy walked too close to them. The FX of the bubble were also good. I enjoyed the Futurama reference with the people tubes protruding from the buildings. The attacking Dot’s CGI was brilliant. As Lindy fled for her life. The slugs overrunning the homeworld was a superb wham moment. As Ricky realises nobody is coming to help them.

 

Incidental Music

Dot and Bubble’s incidental music was excellent. The hyper happy cyberpunky score at the start was great. The music for the slug reveal. And when Lindy ran from the slugs. Really brought home the threat. The Doctor’s music when he outlined the escape plan. Was heroic and rousing. There was also a great mournful score. When Lindy ran through Finetime alone. Moreover, there was some great tense music. That put across Lindy’s manipulativeness at the episode’s close. Over and above that, the music that played when Lindy realised her mum was gone. Really created a note of empathy for that character.

 

Overall

Dot and Bubble is a great Doctor Who episode. It pulls no punches in its social commentary. And shows us humankind’s heroism, darkness, folly and ignorance. As well as a rare occasion when the Doctor cannot save the day despite his best efforts. The tension is created and sustained well. There is a great twist when Lindy leaves Ricky September to die. And we see a demoralised Doctor at the end. Reminding us that the universe is not a fairytale. Thumbs up from this reviewer.

 

Check out our 73 Yards review here

 

Check out our Boom review here

9.5
Doctor Who (S1 - EP5) - Dot and Bubble
  • Story
    9.0
  • Acting
    10
  • CGI
    9.0
  • Incidental Music
    10

Autistic writer who loves sci-fi, cosplay and poetry. Actor with Theatre of the Senses. He/him.
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  • dalek01012
    1 June 2024 at 4:57 pm - Reply

    This episode felt a little more like an episode of Black Mirror than it did Doctor Who.

  • Dominic Walsh
    1 June 2024 at 8:01 pm - Reply

    Lindy is beautiful. It’s such a shame she turned out to be evil.

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