Doctor Who: The Almost People – A Recap

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Courtesy BBC: The Almost People

**** Warning this post contains spoilers about The Almost People and may refer to previous episodes of Doctor Who. If you haven’t watched the episode or don’t want to be surprised do not read further.  ****


So it has been two weeks…. thanks to BBC America taking Memorial Day weekend off from new episodes, and iTunes blacking out the new episode. (Why do TV execs mess with TV schedules? Isn’t that why they made TiVo or DVRs?) Anyways off my soapbox…. where were we last, that’s right… TWO Doctors, identical in every way! (For the sake of this recap I’m going to call the original, Doctor 1.0, and the copy, Doctor 2.0.) Two Doctors means twice the fun! The dialogue between them is awesome and witty. While Doctor 2.0 processes all of the 900+ years of life that is now coursing through his mind, he spits out memorable lines from many of the previous Doctor regenerations, my particular favorite was “Would you like a jelly baby?” complete with Tom Baker’s voice and everything. Once Doctor 2.0 stabilizes he is faced with the remainder of the humans who implicitly don’t trust any Ganger, even if it IS the Doctor. Doctor 1.0 on the other hand trusts him immediately. Luckily for the humans, it isn’t hard to tell the two Doctors apart since Doctor 1.0 has no shoes since his were disintegrated  in the acid when he found the TARDIS sinking into the acid, and Doctor 2.0 has shoes since he came from a scan before the shoes were lost.

Amy specifically doesn’t trust Doctor 2.0, because as she she says there is only one Doctor, the copy is almost, but not quite. She says that the experiences she had can only be truly shared with Doctor 1.0. She asks to speak with Doctor 2.0 privately to help his hurt feelings. When they are alone, she explains that she has seen him die. The Doctor lashes out and screams at Amy, “Why?”. Its a very dark moment for the Doctor, and understandable considering what Amy has just told him. Its amazing to see this side of the Doctor, but terrifying to see him lash out at his own companion and best friend. Matt Smith makes this scene amazing since he can change his mood so quickly. When they rejoin the group, Amy tells everyone that he is dangerous and lashed out, enforcing the lack of trust in him.

The humans decide that the most important task is to contact the main land. With a little help from both Doctors, they are able to connect through and Miranda explains the situation (extremely one sided of course) and asks the mainland to basically come pick them up and torch the place, Gangers and all. She types out a code word to be included in all transmissions from here on out, just in case the Gangers are listening in(they are).

Meanwhile Rory has been wandering the abbey trying to find Jennifer. When he finally catches up to her, he catches up to two Jennifers. They both claim they are the real one, and that the other is the Ganger. Rory just wants everyone to live, he doesn’t care whether they are human or ganger, he just wants to help both of them. It seems one of them is limping and wincing in pain due to an acid burn. That must be the original Jennifer since the Flesh would dissolve in the acid. So now we know Jennifer 1.0 limps, and her Ganger Jennifer 2.0 doesn’t. Jennifer 1.0 commends Rory for his lack of prejudice, but says that it doesn’t matter because the Flesh just wants to kill all of the humans. A Jennifer cat fight breaks out, and Jennifer 2.0 falls into the acid, melting into a puddle of Flesh. So we were right, that was the Ganger.

Jennifer then leads Rory to a pile of discarded Flesh down in one of the tunnels, where he can see that the used Flesh is still conscious even though it is no longer in use. Jennifer questions who the real monsters are, the out of control Gangers or the humans that have used the Flesh this way. This should have been Rory’s first clue that something was wrong with Jennifer, however his compassion blinds him to her behavior. So Rory agrees to help her and go along with her plan. I mean why should he be suspicious, Jennifer 1.0 is limping, she must be human…. right?

Apparently not. Doctor 1.0 gave Doctor 2.0 the sonic screwdriver so he could search for the humans. The sonic has the ability to distinguish between the humans and the Gangers. Since the humans still don’t trust Doctor 2.0, they send Buzzer with him to search for Jennifer and Rory. The sonic leads them straight to the real human Jennifer, apparently only moments after she died. She has been outside unconscious for some time. Rory is in danger, however before he is able to warn the others, Buzzer knocks him on the head rendering him completely unconscious. When Buzzer leaves he runs into Jennifer 2.0, who has gone a bit crazy and attacks. (Its a very bizarre scene.)

Rory has returned to Amy, Doctor 1.0, and the other humans, and explains that Jennifer has shown him an escape route through the underground tunnels. They decide to follow him since they are out of other options, the acid is starting to breech the doors. Rory leads them to a room below, straight into a trap set by Jennifer. So which side is Rory really on? The room everyone is trapped in contains a vat of acid that is about to explode. When Rory realizes the trap and questions Jennifer about her intentions, he is alerted that this Jennifer is indeed Flesh… and plans to kill all of the humans. Ganger Miranda is able to make a call to the mainland to confirm the pick-up plan, she “knows” the encryption codeword “badboy”, because she shares the same mind with her human, they both think the same way.

Rory decides he needs to go and rescue the humans and stop Jennifer 2.0 from killing everyone. Doctor 2.0 (now awake) stops him from going to the other humans, it seems he has been waiting on a very special phone call. You see it is Jimmy’s son’s 5th birthday, and he has a scheduled a specific time to call his father. The child is a hologram in the middle of the room filled with Gangers and Rory. When Ganger Jimmy sees his son asking for his father, he performs an act of humanity and realizes that the child isn’t asking for him(the Ganger), he is asking for his human father. Jimmy runs off to go save his human counterpart for the sake of their son. Unfortunately he arrives to the locked room seconds after the human Jimmy gets hit in the chest with acid, he is too late. The dying Jimmy passes fatherhood onto his Ganger, who returns to his son and tells him he will be home today.

Ganger Jennifer is bound to stop them Gangers and humans, and mutates into a monster, the thing of nightmares, intent on killing them all. Human Dicken sacrifices himself to buy everyone else a bit of time to escape. Luckily the TARDIS falls through the ceiling right at a dead end. The old girl needs a few minutes to recover, so in one last act of heroics, Ganger Miranda and Doctor 1.0 plan to stay behind and use the sonic to vaporize any remaining Flesh, which includes monster Jennifer and Miranda. Amy protests, and tells Doctor 1.0 that he is too important to die, and should let Doctor 2.0 stay since he is just Flesh. That’s when the Doctors reveal that they have been switched all along. Doctor 1.0 has always been the Ganger, and Doctor 2.0 has always been the human. They switched shoes very early on. They needed to see how Amy would respond. So everyone enters the TARDIS except Ganger Doctor, Ganger Miranda, and monster Jennifer. With a flick of the sonic they are vaporized.

Father is reunited with son, human and ganger unite to convince their company to stop treating gangers as if they weren’t alive, and the Doctor is left with Rory and Amy in the TARDIS. However that isn’t the end of the story! Amy starts to buckle over in pain, and the Doctor tells her that she is in labor. The Doctor tells Rory to back away from Amy and reveals that she has been Flesh all along. He mumbles something about needing to know about the Flesh in its earliest stages. He tells Amy that they are going to save her, and decommissions the Flesh.

Amy awakes in a very small cell with eye patch lady telling her to push. Amy screams, and the episode ends.

Wow what a cliffhanger for the last episode of the mid-season. I can’t wait to watch the finale tonight how about you?

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1 thought on “Doctor Who: The Almost People – A Recap

  1. Helen,

    My two boys, especially my youngest son, almost 11 yrs old, are nuts for Doctor Who.

    I introduced them to the show this Spring.

    My obsessed 11 yr old has constructed a sonic screwdriver from Legos – which has undergone several revisions — and I’m supposed to notice the differences between models and weigh in on the best design.

    Glad to see that others are raising their kids up right! Marilyn

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