Dead of Winter

Roots: The Fog. There are references to Antony and Cleopatra, Cranford, Hippocrates, “Michael Finnegan”, Marie Antoinette, Guinevere, Connect 4, Sleeping Beauty, Boney M’s “Ra Ra Rasputin”, David and Goliath, Simon Cowell, John Grisham, Derren Brown, Strictly Come Dancing, George Clooney, The A-Team, PowerPoint, Napoleon, Barbara Streisand, Ryan Reynolds, Tigger, Churchill, King Cnut, Poirot, Jedward, Single Ladies, Subaru, The Prisoner of Zenda, Pete Tong, and The Chronicles of Narnia.

Dialogue Triumphs: “Out there, Amy Pond, is an alien intelligence that is about to shred human history. Now, who do you want popping off to have a word with it – a thousand-year-old Time Lord or a mostly qualified male nurse?”

Continuity: The Familiar are a well-meaning and barely sentient water-dwelling hive. They form a psychic link with the creature in the sea. They read people’s minds and become what they need the most. The creature in the sea was wounded but tried to do the same: it dies when it feels the Doctor’s loss.

The Doctor and Rory temporarily think they are each other, during which “the Doctor” again uses the alias Dr Smith. Rory inherits a recipe for onion chutney from the Doctor. The Doctor drinks hot chocolate. He implies [jokingly?] that without the TARDIS’ translation circuits he has never learnt English. He hates ginger biscuits. He is killed when Dr Bloom shoots him in the head; the Sea resurrects him.

Rory eats steak with Dr. Bloom. He dislikes kippers. He drinks sherry. The sea gives him TB. He used to take Amy to clubs purely to keep her happy. He once participated in a Fun Run organised by the hospital.

Amy wears a lace nightie here. She drinks tea with Prince Boris and later has caviar with him for breakfast. She has never been to the Isle of Man. She once saw a dog killed by a car.

The TARDIS has temporal couplings, which burn out here. It also has a Warp Transfer Coil. There are numerous beach towels in a trunk in the TARDIS.

Links: There are references to fish custard and Jeff (The Eleventh Hour), the HADS (The Krotons), and Silurians (Doctor Who and the Silurians, Warriors of the Deep, The Hungry Earth/In Cold Blood). Rory mentions Daleks (The Big Bang).

Location: St Christophe, France, 4th to December 1783

Unrecorded Adventures: The Doctor has been forced into an arranged marriage with a Russian aristocrat. He took Amy and Rory to an alien planet with singing trees where he told Rory off for dropping a banana skin. He took Amy and Rory to a café where he told the owner, Claudde, that he couldn’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.

The Bottom Line: A stunningly well-written and hugely captivating thrill ride, with some great twists. As usual, Goss captures the regulars perfectly and produces multi-facetted, complex villains.

Discontinuity Guide by Paul Clarke

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