Whatever you may have made of the first two episodes of [[Doctor Who Series 6|Doctor Who’s sixth series]], one thing’s for sure, Steven Moffat raised the bar in terms of throwing story ideas at the viewer at a breakneck pace.
The third episode, titled [[The Curse of the Black Spot (Doctor Who episode)|The Curse of the Black Spot]] dials down the pace significantly as The Doctor, Rory and Amy end up as stowaways on a pirate ship. It features Lily Cole as the ghostly menace that seems to be threatening the crew, and Hugh Bonneville as Captain Avery. Here’s the official synopsis:
A pirate galleon sails the high seas with a skeleton crew. Captain Avery has witnessed a thousand deaths. He has no more tears to cry. But his crew keeps disappearing. One drop of blood is all it takes, before the black spot appears…and then a siren comes calling.
There’s something in the cargo hold. It’s big, blue and possibly very dangerous. “Yo-ho-ho,” declares one of the stowaways. A man with a bow tie and a bit of a chin. “Or does nobody actually say that?” Five minutes later, he’s walking the plank, but he may have been the pirates only hope of rescue from the curse of the black spot.”
We’ve also got The Doctor walking the plank (a requisite scene if you’re going to put the Time Lord up against pirates), Amy Pond waving a cutlass around, and naturally Rory being the first one to be in mortal peril. Poor old Rory.
And before you ask, no singing rivers or regenerating toddlers either.
One word of warning – Den Of Geek seem distinctly unenthused about this episode. Maybe it’s that any episode next to Day Of The Moon was going to seem a little stilted, but they certainly aren’t singing its praises:
It’s better than most drama you get at Saturday teatime, but Doctor Who has set itself ridiculously high standards of late, and The Curse Of The Black Spot can’t match them. It’s decent, certainly, and the production values are great. But it won’t be an episode long remembered.
I’m hopeful -probably like most of you reading this – that the first two episodes haven’t set series 6 up to seem rather lacklustre. To be fair, we’ve always had the odd disposable episode throughout the past 6 years on Doctor Who. I think that with the shocking cliffhangers we saw with River kissing The Doctor and the little girl regenerating, it was always going to be disappointing to be wrenched away from that far more exhilerating story.