This review may contain spoilers.
After an intense and thoroughly exciting episode last week, “Day Of The Moon” skips over the conclusion to the gasp-educing cliff-hanger of “The Impossible Astronaut” and cuts right to the chase.
The overall tone of the episode is distinctively different from that of “The Impossible Astronaut,” this time with our heroes in a more vulnerable and on the run setting; The Doctor (Matt Smith) is missing and the rest of his companions are being pursued across America by Delaware (Mark Sheppard).
Intriguing? Yes, but the problem here is that “Day Of The Moon” takes no time to explain the events leading from Amy (Karen Gillan) shooting the astronaut child and their daring plan to defeat The Silence. The episode drops vague notions over how the team went from A to B but nothing is conclusively wrapped up in a satisfying fashion.
And although there is plenty of humor in “Day Of The Moon” (like River jumping off a building and into the Tardis swimming pool), the episode is far more chilling than the one that came before. The Silence continues to terrify and the ghostly cries for help that dominate the second part of the episode makes them seem even scarier.
Overall, the episode is about the companions and how The Doctor has changed their lives and it plays out in a very emotional fashion. Arthur Darvill and Alex Kingston play their parts to perfection, cranking up the angst and heart-ache that The Doctor has caused them.
The episode concludes in an epic and very “Doctor Who” fashion, and unlike previous episodes leaves plenty of questions for a long-running arc.
Points Of Interest
1. Is the little girl Amy’s daughter as hinted? If so, does that make her The Doctor’s child too?
2. The silver eye-patch woman was never explained, meaning she will likely be back before the end of the season.
Just like the episode before, the landscapes and tracking shots of Utah are stunning and give the series a very epic feel.
“Day Of The Moon” makes terrific use of comedy to heighten the chills and thrills, going from a serious giggle moment to another that is almost terrifying – the best example of course being The Doctor pulling cables out of Apollo 11 to Amy being trapped in the nest of The Silence.
Another comedic element in the episodes favor is the way in which President Nixon comes strolling out of the most bizarre locations whenever he is needed.
The idea that The Silence not only invaded the United States but succeeded in quietly conquering the nation is a fascinating one and is kept all the more interesting thanks to the vague nature of their very existence.
And speaking of vague … the almost-reveal (but not quite) at the end of the episode leaves you wanting more from this arc.
What Didn’t Work
The tally marks were a brilliant way to keep track of The Silence and helped underscore exactly how far reaching The Silence really are. However, when Amy finds herself suddenly facing a nest of Silence and is then covered in tally marks you have to ask the question of how she had time to craft the marks on her face in the middle of a crisis.
Although the Doctor broadcasting a messaging to kill the Silence saved the human race, it was a little disconcerting that it was so easy for The Doctor to agree to kill an entire species.
Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due
“Day Of The Moon” was written by Steve Moffat and directed by Toby Haynes.