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2 September 2012

DWO have seen 7.2: Dinosaurs on a Spaceship and have put our spoiler-free preview together:

When Steven Moffat referred to this new series as "filmic" and "like standalone movies", it's difficult to think how such a thing would be possible with the restriction of a 45-minute time-slot - not to mention BBC budgets, but the Doctor Who team being who they are, only went and did it - in spades!

Dinosaurs on a Spaceship sees us travel from Egypt 1334 B.C. to Earth 2367 A.D. and then back in time to the African Plains of 1902 A.D., before we're brought crashing back down to the mundanity of real life in the Pond household. And that's all before the title sequence!

Sure, there's a lot crammed into this 45-minute episode, but rather cleverly (and miraculously) it doesn't feel cluttered or rushed. The Doctor has a total of 5 companions with him on this particular outing (not all of them are willing), and it leads to a surprisingly refreshing gear change that, on paper, shouldn't work, but to watch on screen is thoroughly entertaining.

The idea that The Doctor can pick up a companion of his choosing, anywhere in time and space is really quite fun and explored rather mischievously here - especially when they turn out to be Queen Nefertiti (Riaan Steele) and big-game hunter, John Riddell (Rupert Graves). An odd pairing, but one that works all the same - and with dinosaurs abound, The Doctor is going to need all the help he can get!

We mustn't forget Amy and Rory, though! There's plenty of Pond action for you to be getting on with. Amy in particular comes forward and shows off some of the skills she has learnt from her time travelling with The Doctor. Rory feels a little underused, however, which is a shame considering the momentum of his character development in recent episodes.

Together with a particularly unlikable villain (played by the wonderful David Bradley of Harry Potter fame) as well as two equally unlikeable (though slightly irritating) robot servants (voiced by comedians David Mitchell and Robert Webb), Dinosaurs on a Spaceship is incredibly well-rounded.

But lets get to the bit everyone wants to hear about, The Dinosaurs!!! Firstly, they are fantastically well done. The CGI shots are of the highest calibre (kudos to The Mill) and the model shots are so realistic, they give Spielberg's Jurassic Park a run for its money. Speaking of which, there are a couple of obligatory nods to the aforementioned movie, with Murray Gold's awesome score feeling quite John Williams-esque in places.

Writer, Chris Chibnall, has to be commended for this script. It would have been so easy to get carried away with the concept of throwing Dinosaurs into a Doctor Who story, but they're not overused. Everything and, more importantly, everyone, fits together nicely. Action-packed would be a bit of an understatement for this episode, and when you throw the words 'Doctor', 'Triceratops' and 'Golf Ball' together…well…just wait and see!

Five things to look out for...

1) Were introduced to another member of the Pond family (or should that be Williams).

2) It's been 10 Months since the events of Asylum of the Daleks.

3) The Doctor has a gang now!

4) The Doctor still has a Christmas List!

5) "Doctor, after all this time…"

[Source: Doctor Who Online]

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