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GateWorld
August 11th, 2012, 04:32 PM
<DIV ALIGN="center"><TABLE WIDTH="450" BORDER="0" CELLSPACING="0" CELLPADDING="7"><TR><TD STYLE="border: none;"><DIV ALIGN="left"><FONT FACE="Verdana, Arial, san-serif" SIZE="2" COLOR="#000000"><A HREF="http://www.scifistream.com/doctor-who/s7/a-town-called-mercy/"><IMG SRC="http://www.scifistream.com/wp-content/uploads/a-town-called-mercy-160x120.jpg" WIDTH="160" HEIGHT="120" ALIGN="right" HSPACE="10" VSPACE="2" BORDER="0" STYLE="border: 1px black solid;" ALT="Visit the Episode Guide"></A><FONT SIZE="1" COLOR="#888888">DOCTOR WHO - SERIES 33</FONT>
<FONT SIZE="4"><A HREF="http://www.scifistream.com/doctor-who/s7/a-town-called-mercy/" STYLE="text-decoration: none">A TOWN CALLED MERCY</A></FONT>
<FONT SIZE="1">EPISODE NUMBER - 3303 (703)</FONT>
<DIV STYLE="margin-top:10px; padding:0;">The Doctor, Amy, and Rory try to defend an Old West town and an alien doctor from a merciless cyborg killer, only to discover that the man the "Gunslinger" is hunting hides a dark secret.</IDV>

<FONT SIZE="1"><B><A HREF="http://www.scifistream.com/doctor-who/s7/a-town-called-mercy/">VISIT THE EPISODE GUIDE >></A></B></FONT></FONT></DIV></TD></TR></TABLE></DIV>

Sealurk
September 15th, 2012, 12:20 PM
Nope, still don't like the tweaked opening credits.

He left his phone charger in Henry VIII's en suite? Rory, I expected better of you!

So... early speculation: Kahler Jex is some kind of alien Mengele or other kind of war criminal, and the Gunslinger is actually a lawman trying to capture him.

"I've matured. I'm twelve hundred years old - plus I don't want to miss The Archers."

So after his actions regarding Solomon last week and his willingness to sacrifice Jex this episode, the Doctor is definitely getting colder and more brutal. All those years on his own haven't done him any good.

"You're both good men, you just forget it sometimes."

Hmm, bit of a weak episode I think. Not bad per se, just not up to the standards of other episodes. Actually, for me Moffat's Doctor Who always has a slightly weak third episode - Victory of the Daleks, The Curse of the Black Spot and now this. I liked it, and I liked that Jex was genuine about redemption and helping people precisely because of his earlier actions, but it all felt very predictable. Next week's looks good though!

Teddybrown
September 15th, 2012, 12:22 PM
Pretty good episode, what with Solomon, now this, cant wait to see his reaction when its time to let Amy and Rory go...
Haha, Rory leaving his phone charger in Henry VIIIs en suite...
So, the Doctors a fan of the Archers now...
Pretty good episode, next weeks looks awesome!

Blencathra
September 15th, 2012, 12:28 PM
I thought that was a reasonable episode with some great one liners. Murray Gold's score was absolutely fabulous. I can't wait to get my hands on the soundtrack.

I'd give it 6/10.

Like everyone else I think next week's episode looks great!

knowles2
September 15th, 2012, 12:28 PM
Best episode of the season so far and the best one they have done for a while.
Now that how you to a cyborg. (he make the Cybermen look like pussies)

An the doctor is growing darker each episode. An this is the third time this season we have met a enemy that have carried out a massacre, an the third time we have met someone that did something terrible for what they thought were good reason.

So we have a new defender of the earth, hope we get to meet up with him again in the future.

Adrian Scarborough's played his role perfectly as Kahler-Jex an he force the doctor to look into the mirror. They both do and did what is necessary and they both regret doing it. An Kahler did is no worst than what the doctor has done in the past.

Matt G
September 15th, 2012, 03:39 PM
Hmmmm....

1. Knew there had to be a catch with the good Doctor.

2. OK, why the hell make the Doctor Marshall?

3. So the Doctor keeps picking up the Ponds. Going to get messy.

Solid ep, apparantly we'll see the Gunslinger in the next ep.

knowles2
September 15th, 2012, 04:23 PM
Solid ep, apparantly we'll see the Gunslinger in the next ep.

Where did you hear/read that?

DigiFluid
September 15th, 2012, 05:21 PM
Seemed a little slow, but that might just be because the last two episodes kicked their pacing into warp 9 within the first few seconds. This one had a bit slower a feel to it, more in line with the western films it was paying homage to. Great direction/cinematography in this one too, pretty much every shot in the episode was gorgeous.

Woefully underused the Ponds though.

Tyjos
September 15th, 2012, 10:37 PM
Rather interesting episode, learned one thing for sure:
Don't give Amy a gun, chances are it might go off accidentally.

Cold Fuzz
September 15th, 2012, 10:41 PM
Strong episode, especially given the moral quandary the Doctor faces.

Positives

Fantastic lines, my favorite of which is probably: "Justice doesn't work like that! You don't get to decide when and how your debt is paid!" Goodness, the Doctor's fire was stunning in that scene. :cool: Another good one is "Today, I honor the victims first--his, the Master's, the Daleks'--all the people who died because of my mercy!"
The Gunslinger himself. Excellent costume and design, particularly the teleportation (or is that a stealth system?). It speaks volumes that he refused to take innocent lives. I especially like the ending for him, becoming Mercy's lawman. :D
Abraxas Security Software: Incinerating intruders for 3 centuries. :lol:
Adrian Scarborough's performance. I think he nailed the character of Jex. He had just the right amount of dislikability and repentance for a character of such complexity.
Murray Gold's score! Murray Gold has never disappointed me with his soundtracks. With this soundtrack, he went far above and beyond his usual good job. :D
Isaac addressing the Doctor as "son." Loved it because, in real life, Ben Browder is 3 months shy of 50. Looks great for his age, as he's even older than Adrian Scarborough.
The Doctor's age. 1,200 years old now. Hmm... so it's been about 97 years in his timeline since the events in The Wedding of River Song and he's been traveling alone for most of that time as he's hardly seen Amy & Rory. :eek:
The Kahler alarm system. Appropriately hideous-sounding. I'm reminded of terrible alarm clock somebody owned during college. People referred to it as the apocalypse alarm as it was loud enough to wake the dead. :P The Kahler alarm sounded much like that alarm. :eek:




Negatives

As someone who works alongside law enforcement people at work (I don't have a badge myself though), my view about Jex is very different from someone like Amy or even the average Doctor Who viewer. To be honest, I find Isaac pretty unbelievable as a lawman from Nevada in 1870. I say Nevada because the Nevada marshal's office posters in Isaac's office was very conspicuous to me. :o Five years after the Civil War, if a lawman encountered a fugitive from X city in his town, he's not just going to wipe the slate clean for the fugitive. It just didn't work that way.
Law enforcement nitpick: The character of Isaac should have been a sheriff, not a marshal. Toby Whithouse will firmly disagree with me but just as a matter of accuracy, small towns like Mercy did not have marshals, especially with a population of only 81. Marshals answered to the federal government, much the same way the FBI does now. Marshals were in larger cities like Santa Fe, Tuscon, or Phoenix. Sheriffs and their deputies handled law enforcement at the local level and they often asked marshals for help in more serious crime issues.
Jex threatened Amy at gunpoint and she was about to become a hostage. 1.5 scenes later, she's Jex's biggest advocate and even wants to shoot the Doctor? That, to me, strains believability.
The new opening titles. I like the changing themes with the Doctor Who logo, ranging from Daleks, reptilian skins, and wood with bullets. But the new white font? Nope. I liked the series 5 & 6 fonts much, much better.



Overall, there more elements in this episode I liked than disliked, and this will be an episode that has strong re-watch value for me for the Western setting. :)

TryWhistlingThis
September 16th, 2012, 05:13 AM
A Town Called Mercy

I would easily put this one amongst one of Matt Smith's top ten, it was flawless and one of my favourite episodes every in every possible way. Terrific set design, costumes, a straight forward story that suits the western and sci-fi hybrid they were going for plus generally a really well paced episode. Matt's performance was also one of his best and possibly one of his darkest and most relentless. I think this is the watershed season for his Doctor where we'll start to see some of his more mercurial qualities surface, a little bit like Sylvester McCoy's Doctor in 1989.

It also gave me a genuine laugh out loud moment when the Doctor walked into the bar and asked for tea requesting that she "leave the bag in" which I thought was a funny homage to those old westerns where the protagonist would ask the barman to "...leave the bottle..."

Outstanding, one of my favourite ever episodes of Doctor Who.

6 out of 5

SeaBee
September 16th, 2012, 09:48 AM
I'm still struggling with this season. This episode was a definite improvement on last weeks, but so far the season still feels a little lightweight compared to the last one.

Early days yet, though. Plenty of time to go.

RJLCyberPunk
September 16th, 2012, 12:31 PM
Yes the doctor getting darker is increasingly worrisome imagine an episode where he becomes just like his timelord nemesis The Master. :S

Quizziard
September 16th, 2012, 01:00 PM
Still trying to decide about this one. Some great one-liners, as ever, gorgeous cinematography and thoughtful moral positions.

Teddybrown
September 16th, 2012, 01:34 PM
I'm still struggling with this season. This episode was a definite improvement on last weeks, but so far the season still feels a little lightweight compared to the last one.

Early days yet, though. Plenty of time to go.

I think after the next two episodes, you will be sold... definately after episode 5...

GateFanSamJack
September 16th, 2012, 09:04 PM
I liked it. It was nice to let things slow down a bit to feel more like a Western. Some breathing space.

They could've used the Ponds more.

The Doctor's personality differences were interesting.

That feel of non-British characters written by British writers was there at times. I have to think too much for why a Marshall would be part of the town for so long, so I just don't. There was a little more looking to authority by the townspeople than we should have seen, but snippets of that can be justifiable for the circumstances and because it wasn't like that across the board.

pjt
September 16th, 2012, 10:08 PM
Wasn't a bad episode but it was quite straightforward and predictable, at least by DW standards. But if we look at it as an episode that had a task to point out important things, nah, still too predictable ;). On the other hand we learned that the Doctor is losing his humanity, and Any and Rory are declining trips because people would notice they are aging faster than them? That's an interesting twist on the companion problem. It also means that the doctor will be more and more alone (at least until Christmas).
All in all not a usual episode, but quite enjoyable.

aretood2
September 17th, 2012, 06:28 AM
I liked it. It was nice to let things slow down a bit to feel more like a Western. Some breathing space.

They could've used the Ponds more.

The Doctor's personality differences were interesting.

That feel of non-British characters written by British writers was there at times. I have to think too much for why a Marshall would be part of the town for so long, so I just don't. There was a little more looking to authority by the townspeople than we should have seen, but snippets of that can be justifiable for the circumstances and because it wasn't like that across the board.
That was bothering me the whole time >.>

It was an OK episode. Loved Browder's appearance, that was a nice touch. For me, this episode wasn't really that memorable. The whole thing about the Doctor going on the off end is interesting, it really gives meaning to what he did to Solomon. I can't help but wonder how this is different from past situations though.

Jex wasn't threatening nor harming humans, or anyone else at the time. If anything, the threat ways the gunslinger. The gunslinger we taking the law into his own hands, a law that didn't apply in Mercy in late 1800's USA. If anything, the Doctor went against the wishes of local law enforcement, which would make him the criminal (At least for a moment).

The Doctor never really did play the numbers game before. Thus I don't see a justification going along the lines of "Sacrificing one dude for the many" a la Spock.

Solomon on the other hand committed Genocide like if he was picking what pair of socks to wear. and showed no redeemable qualities (something that Jex pointed out to the Doctor, that he wasn't exactly a 2 dimensional big bad guy) and consistently wanted to do bad. The Doctor took the role of Judge, Jury, and Executioner with Jex, for a crime he didn't commit on Earth if one want's to argue the Doctor as a defender of Earth.

It's not like if he is the Shadow Proclamation or something. I think he skirted the morality horizon there, almost going to "Dude, you just did something really bad there." Like 11 in that Mars episode.

That's what I got from the episode, anyway.

iJOKE
September 19th, 2012, 04:12 AM
I think after the next two episodes, you will be sold... definately after episode 5...

I hope so. this is the first ever episode i switched off. it was boring and predictable. i have a feeling the next episode will be likewise.... i have faith in ep 5.

GodAtum
September 19th, 2012, 05:11 AM
Anyone noticed in this and the previous ep they explicitly state that "the Doctor" is not known. Also he lost his compassion after the last ep when he allowed Solomon to be killed?

aretood2
September 19th, 2012, 07:35 AM
Anyone noticed in this and the previous ep they explicitly state that "the Doctor" is not known. Also he lost his compassion after the last ep when he allowed Solomon to be killed?

I wouldn't say compassion has anything to do with this.

Quizziard
September 19th, 2012, 10:48 AM
It's partially the time war, I think. Didn't the 9th say he "used to be so compassionate"?

aretood2
September 19th, 2012, 01:04 PM
It's partially the time war, I think. Didn't the 9th say he "used to be so compassionate"?
In my opinion 9th was a PTSD doctor. I don't recall him saying that. Compassionate with bad people?

Cold Fuzz
September 19th, 2012, 02:35 PM
Anyone noticed in this and the previous ep they explicitly state that "the Doctor" is not known. Also he lost his compassion after the last ep when he allowed Solomon to be killed?

The Doctor didn't suddenly lose his compassion. He's had a history of scragging his opponents, just not very often, but he's certainly eliminated his share of enemies. Nearly allowing the Gunslinger to have his way with Kahler-Jex was simply a continuation of this trend. Here's just a partial hitlist for the Doctor:


Killing Daleks in Asylum of the Daleks
Allowing Solomon to get killed by missiles in Dinosaurs on a Spaceship
Forcibly and painfully extracting information from a dying Dalek in The Wedding of River Song
Destroying an entire Cyber-Legion to coerce them into giving the location of Demon's Run in A Good Man Goes to War.
Allowing the TARDIS Matrix to kill House in The Doctor's Wife. He could have given House a chance to leave the TARDIS but he didn't.
Allowing River to scrag a Dalek in The Big Bang. He could have stopped her but didn't.
Using humanity to kill the Silence en masse in Day of the Moon. Let's be frank here. This is pretty much genocide. I think his actions were justifiable from a certain point of view considering that they essentially enslaved all of humanity but the scope of it is still staggering.
Consigning the Family of Blood to eternal sentences--a fate arguably worse than death.



There are many more examples of this kind of behavior and I haven't even touched the Time War yet. To say that the Doctor is a strict pacifist or always compassionate simply isn't true.

What really got me about A Town Called Mercy was Amy's behavior. Kahler-Jex threatened her with a loaded gun and was about to take her hostage. The only reason this didn't happen was because Isaac intervened at just the right moment. Two scenes later she's defending Jex and then poorly tries to threaten the Doctor with a gun? *shakes head*

Even further, Amy wasn't complaining or objecting when the Doctor rescued her from the Silence in Day of the Moon where he killed almost their entire race. Yet, she has a problem with him handing over a single war criminal to his arguably just fate. It's OK to kill an entire race of hostile aliens but not OK to hand over a war criminal? Amy isn't exactly being consistent with her behavior.

The Doctor has been consistent with his behavior. True, his behavior is trending towards a darker outlook but that behavior has been consistent.


It's partially the time war, I think. Didn't the 9th say he "used to be so compassionate"?

Actually, those are the 10th Doctor's words, and the exact words were, "I used to have so much mercy." You would think that it would be the 9th who said it but it wasn't. The 10th said it to the leader of the Krillitanes in School Reunion.

SGalisa
September 19th, 2012, 06:44 PM
I had mixed feelings about the eppy thruout most of it, until the very ending.
I loved the ending! It made the story worth watching. How the Gunslinger managed to become both friend and protector in a place where he was needed. :)
I was afraid he was going to self-destruct somehow after his primary reason for being there ended (to terminate the alien doctor (not THE Doctor)). :(
Wonder how much talking it took THE Doctor to convince the Gunslinger to become an *Angel* of sorts... :D
Ben Browder.. had a rather short-lived role. Ah well. :(

maneth
July 3rd, 2013, 09:02 AM
Loved BB in this! Great to see him again. It was an interesting story I think, and very different to most of the episodes.