Have you guys ever noticed that Russell T Davies' series finales have become worse and worse with every series. It's one of the few oddities in writing that I've found interesting. But before I talk about the individual series finale I'll sum up how I felt about all four of them in 15 words or less.
- The Parting of the Ways - A simply excellent ending, it just shows that Doctor Who is back in town.
- Doomsday - An action packed ending to an action packed series.
- Last of the Time Lords - a little lackluster ending but still enjoyable.
- Journey's End - WHY THE HELL DID HE BOTHER BRINGING BACK ALL THOSE COMPANIONS!?!?!?!
As you can see "The Parting of the Ways" was brilliant but this was a slow decent down to mediocre territory.
The Parting of the Ways
I have the right as a sci-fi geek to have a baseline for a sci-fi series/season finale of a sci-fi TV series. That baseline for Doctor Who even to date is still "The Parting of the Ways", yes it better than "The Big Bang". RTD really outdid himself with that script, the supporting characters were well written, the performances by Chris Eccleston, John Barrowman and Billie Piper were just masterful, with Eccleston just dominating the scene, Piper being the source of the drama, and Barrowman just being the badass he was born to play. The story itself was written perfectly for the most part and the revelation that Rose is Bad Wolf was handled well but the fact that Bad Wolf isn't a story arc, brought in down. Honestly I didn't realize that Bad Wolf was a recurring phrase until the Doctor pointed it out in "Boom Town". Easily 10/10.
Right from the start this episode does exactly what it says on the tin. It's doomsday for the Doctor - the Daleks are back, the Cybermen are in full force, Rose and Mickey could die any second, in fact anyone can die any second. Basically this story is jammed full of action, suspence, drama, etc. And while the cast doesn't perform as good as it did in "The Parting of the Ways" it still a lot better than average acting. It's semi-perfect 8/10.
Last of the Time Lords
Again like "Army of Ghosts", "The Sound of Drums" sets the stage for the grand finale, but is it perfect: far from it but it's not bad. "Last of the Time Lords" had the Master as the main villain and the show's status quo was: the Doctor is the last of the Time Lords. So basically RTD wasted no time in killing the Master. Here's an idea: when the Master had Jack's Vortex Manipulator have him teleport to another planet, or the future. Instead the Master gets axed by his wife. The episode had its share of brilliant moments, but one of the main flaws is the fact that the Master gets killed, the other one is that Jack decides to just go back to Torchwood despite the fact that he left it so that he could rejoin the Doctor. Well he had a whole year to think about it so that's not a big problem. Again the performance from David Tennant is still close to perfect but I found his acting at the Master's death scene to be a bit over the top, but just a little. This episode had both drama and action but it just doesn't have enough of them 7/10.
What can I say about this failure of an episode that's positive, well that would be the acting of David Tennant and Julian Bleach. The two actors are just nailing their lines perfectly, when I saw their scenes together I didn't see David and Julian, I saw the Doctor and Davros. Unfortunately the acting can't carry the episode if the story isn't good, and the story wasn't good. I see what RTD tried to do, he tried to show that the Doctor can't save the universe without someone by his side and how when companions are united they can do things even the Doctor can't. However that idea of having more main actors at the cost of these actors having diminished roles throughout this episode and the previous one. I mean even the Doctor didn't do anything in this episode apart from getting shot and sending everybody back home. And while it's good to see someone else actually saving the day rather than the Doctor, it's still stupid that the Doctor doesn't have any direct involvement in it. This episode started well but it just went progressively down until there's barely anything good left in the script. The deus ex machina ending really pissed me of. This was the episode that turned the Daleks from scary monsters into pussies. If the Doctor can defeat them that easily then they should've committed suicide when he found them in "Victory of the Daleks" 5/10.