The premiere episode of the 7th series of Doctor Who (7th since the revival of the program back in 2005) takes viewers back to the Dalek home world of Skaro, long since thought destroyed along with Gallifrey in the Last Great Time War, and brings together again the popular companions Amy Pond and her, now ex-husband, Rory Williams with the time travelling alien known only as The Doctor. The episode, written by current show runner Steven Moffat and directed by Nick Hurran, is entitled Asylum of the Daleks and speculation has been rife on the message boards and fan pages for the popular British science-fiction program, which celebrates its 50th anniversary next November, what the meaning of the word “asylum” was. Was asylum being used as in “seeking asylum” or was it being used like “insane asylum”? Well if you are one of those fans that do not want to know anything ahead of broadcast, then this is not the review for you, it can be reported that it is more the insane asylum.
The Doctor, our time travelling alien with the ever changing face, is brought back together with his most recent companions by the Parliament of the Daleks for an impossible mission. The greatest enemy of The Doctor sends them to a snow covered prison planet where all the insane, battle scarred, totally mental Daleks are kept. Their ray guns no longer work, but if you think that makes them less of a threat, well then you’ve never seen the show. Helping them along the way is a couple of humans trapped on the planet, although most of the episode the characters of Amy and Rory spend their time arguing and fighting leading viewers to wonder what happened to that wonderful romance between the two.
The episode lives up to the hype of being blockbuster movie-style, with exciting visuals and wonderful storytelling, much better than most of the movies being run in theaters lately. There were a few disappointments, namely the aforementioned disharmony of the seemingly totally in love characters viewers had grown to know over the past two series and the lack of screen time for the vintage Daleks. Executive Producer Steven Moffat had promised that every Dalek since the beginning of the show would be back in this episode, and he was not wrong, they are there, however the screen time is reserved for the most recent incarnations of the villainous mutants inside metal casings.
The surprise ending will remain a surprise, for now, but rest assured the episode is filled with the action, humor, and heart fans have come to know and love and the ending will leave you speechless. Doctor Who is scheduled to return to screens in September in England on BBC One and in the United States on BBC America. Doctor Who stars Matt Smith as the Time Lord from Gallifrey, Karen Gillan plays Amy Pond and Arthur Darvill is Rory Williams. Nicholas Briggs once again provides the voice of the Daleks and Naomi Ryan is on board as Cassandra, Anamaria Marinca as Darla, and David Gyasi as Harvey. The 7th Series of Doctor Who returns this Fall with a bang, make sure you are there for the series that will lead into the 50th Anniversary of the popular program.