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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. Sheโ€™s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later. Support Elizabeth on Patreon.


  1. Tom
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:28 am

    Your comment that the Rani was 'self-evidently designed to be a gay icon' is rather insulting. What aspects of her character make her designed as a gay icon?


  2. Anton B
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:52 am

    Excellent. A return to alchemical principles. I was rather expecting you though to elaborate on the Doctor's antagonists' relationship to the 'abdicated ruler of the Land of Fiction' role you ascribed to him way back in your 'Mind Robber' essay. I've a feeling the whole 'nameless renegade' status fits into that in some way. Also extradiagetically if the Master is a pantomime villian isn't the Rani cast from the same dramaturgical mold? A touch of The White Queen from Narnia and a bit of the Red Queen from Alice with a soupcon of the Wicked Witch of the West from Oz? It would make some sense of the living trees and her almost folk tale origin story involving cats and mice and naughtiness. Camp doesn't begin to cover it.


  3. Alex Wilcock
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:58 am

    I wish you were right about Time Lord names versus titles, so I’ll try to squint a bit and pretend that it’s true (ignoring, say, “The Castellan,” or “Morbius,” or how The End of Time’s “The Narrator” in the Radio Times instantly make me think, ‘Well, that’s a Time Lord’). One thing about the Rani being a Queen, though, is that while Pip and Jane are desperate in their heavy-handed way to make a point about disliking science for its own sake, they and everyone else seem to have forgotten that the Rani, unlike the Master, manages to run her own world, and that’s why she’s here, shopping for resources to let her manage it more effectively (I suppose she’d be less interesting were she titled ‘The Bureaucrat’). As to other political points, the writers’ self-proclaimed socialism, as you suggest, isn’t completely coherent.

    I did love your “Here the Rani has a mark – a grapheme – that is disconnected from a name”, though. It immediately made me associate her with another camp ’80s icon of self-proclaimed royalty and famously disconnected grapheme; for me, Jonathan Gibbs’ music is one of the best things about this story, but imagine it with a score by Prince! “What, then, is the mark of the Master and of the Doctor?” is a great question, at least, too.

    I’m always caught by wondering what could have saved this story, if anything. The plot itself is a dismal mess, particularly in Part Two, by which time everyone knows exactly who the Rani is and what she’s up to, so all that’s left is to fill time with threatening maggots, trees, trolleys, bathhouses and, er, paintings, as if Pip and Jane were competing to see who could prepare the most preternaturally pedestrian preposterous peril before the ‘climax’ of ‘I’ve twiddled some knobs so they, um, drive away, and, er… Look! Dinosaurs!’

    But in some ways the worst thing about it is also the best, and to take it out would make The Mark of the Rani utterly unwatchable. As you say, the Rani “is far less interesting on paper than the Master” yet gets to “upstage him at every opportunity” by “shamelessly undermining the Master”, which in many ways is a terrible idea. And this story’s a tipping point – the Master was pretty poor in a couple of Davisons, but Ainley suddenly gave a cracking performance in Planet of Fire, so he could have been on his way back up. But, no, here’s where the series’ lead villain is cast down into The Curse of Fatal Death cackling camp version that everyone laughs at, like The King’s Demons turned up to 11, with both his role and his performance shockingly bad. But if the Rani didn’t get to mock him, she’d be dull as ditchwater; you have to keep her bitchy put-downs, even if something’s gone a bit wrong when you need to invent another Time Lord to act as the voice of the viewer. What’s even stranger is that one of the things the Master is mocked for is essentially for being the only character here who keeps speaking in the sort of vocal gymnastics that Pip and Jane themselves become known for. “It’ll be something devious and overcomplicated – he’d get dizzy if he tried to walk in a straight line…” comes across as much the Rani leaning out of the screen to critique her writers as her co-star.

    As to what’s revealed about the Daleks… Well, I always thought the title chimed rather well with the religious feel to the story, but if you want an actual revelation, in plot terms it’s that the Daleks are split, and in visual terms doesn’t the glass Dalek fit the bill…?


  4. Alex Wilcock
    May 9, 2012 @ 1:05 am

    Of course, the story was originally titled Enter the Rani, which would not only have spoilt your intriguing line of argument but would have been as big a single entendre as, say, having the man with the series’ most startlingly visible packet transform into a tree the leafy branches at the top of which must have been his arms, the roots his legs, and with a thick ‘branch’ half-way up that seems drawn to Peri. But no-one would put that on screen.


  5. Anton B
    May 9, 2012 @ 1:22 am

    OH YES THEY WOOD! see what you've done now? Pantomime is a wierd trope that does keep appearing in Doctor Who. From the panto horse monsters to the camp villians, the double entendres and bitchy one-liners and the way marriage is often the exit strategy for characters. I wonder if that genre's roots in Commedia del'arte is a worthwile path to explore. I often consider the Doctor to be a version of the 'Dottore' character.


  6. PMcD
    May 9, 2012 @ 2:02 am

    I thought the revelation in Revelation was that Daleks had abandoned absolute racial purity and were turning people into themselves…


  7. Exploding Eye
    May 9, 2012 @ 2:18 am

    I think you'd have to deliberately want to take offence not be able to see a pattern in the kinds of female character who become camp icons. She's another Servalan.


  8. Exploding Eye
    May 9, 2012 @ 3:04 am

    Pip, Jane and Colin. Too many Bakers spoil the bread?

    Incidentally, I think turning into a tree but still retaining some form of sentience is one of the darkest fates for any character in Doctor Who. It's a bit of a joke in execution, but if you take the idea seriously, it's really grim.


  9. Dr. Happypants
    May 9, 2012 @ 3:43 am

    Have you never met a drag queen, Tom?


  10. Picklepuss
    May 9, 2012 @ 4:48 am

    "What, then, is the mark of the Master and of the Doctor?"

    I'd say the Doctor's is a question mark, and judging from his clothes and accessories during the JNT era he's very fond of it. ๐Ÿ˜‰


  11. Elizabeth Sandifer
    May 9, 2012 @ 5:22 am

    I've tragically read Warmonger more recently than I've watched Brain of Morbius, but I never really thought that the idea that Morbius considered himself the rightful President of Gallifrey was a stretch in Warmonger. He seems to me to fall into the category of exiles, not renegades.

    The Castellan, on the other hand, is preceded by two Castellans with names, establishing it as a position where one retains a name. For us not to be told the name of the third Castellan is not, I think, particularly worthy of note.


  12. jane
    May 9, 2012 @ 6:23 am

    I thought the Doctor was Pierrot.


  13. jane
    May 9, 2012 @ 6:26 am

    Her mark is a blatant smear of makeup.


  14. jane
    May 9, 2012 @ 6:44 am

    I liked the return of the alchemical, too, because camp can't cover it.

    The bit about trees is fascinating. Mythologically, the tree symbolizes connection, an axis mundi reaching from the Now up to the heavens and into the Underworld. To make this sort of transformation is the work of an alchemist. Within the trees of the Rani we get a bawdy joke juxtaposed with a kind of nobility: saving Peri.

    I love that the Rani's chemistry is focused on extracting an essence from the human brain — that which promotes sleep, the elixir of dreams. In a way, she's just as ironic as the Master, for the heart of alchemy is the soul, whereas the Rani sees only a walking chemical factory.


  15. Jesse
    May 9, 2012 @ 6:54 am

    Good lord, Phil, you've actually made me interested in seeing this story.


  16. Matt Sharp
    May 9, 2012 @ 7:07 am

    The trickster role is Pulcinella. I can't quite see the Doctor as Mister Punch.

    To be honest, I can't really see any of the traditional parts as the Doctor, although I can see all of them as the Doctor…

    Does that make sense?


  17. Adam Riggio
    May 9, 2012 @ 7:21 am

    Tracing the exorcism of season 22 is fascinating. Each of Phil's three reviews of its stories so far have focussed on a different aspect of corruption that has infested the show, but it all seems to centre on one key idea. The Doctor is a force of liberation, but his own show has come to constrain him. The liberator is no longer free, and so can no longer be a liberator.

    Attack of the Cybermen reveals the normalizing force of the Whoniverse that seeks to constrain and limit Doctor Who as a sci-fi canon. Doctor Who works when it builds new worlds and narratives with every story. It's a creative exploration of problems, and how to transform those constraining situations into freer arrangements. Treating the Doctor and the TARDIS as just one element in an internally consistent Whoniverse robs him of his power to liberate. Phil's entries on The Three Doctors and The Deadly Assassin showed how the Doctor was a liberating force in his breaking of laws: becoming an exception to a deterministic order destroys the entire order itself. The Whoniverse is an unbreakable law, and the insane failure of Attack of the Cybermen is the show understanding that it cannot survive with an unbreakable law.

    Vengeance on Varos goes full meta, showing the moral failings that come to the Doctor when the show implicates him inextricably in a violent narrative. Just as the story illustrates, we can never escape violence, no matter how much we may profess to hate it, as long as we keep loving to watch it. The Doctor may plead for there to be another way, but the violence of the situations into which he's thrust constrain him from finding it.

    Now Mark of the Rani deals with the problem of constraining what the Doctor can do from a character perspective. The conflict at the heart of the story's structure is between the Rani and the Master: an unspeakable force of transformation vs an uneraseable prophet of entropy. The Rani's transformations aren't all that good for people because she only cares about maintaining her idiosyncratic experiments; she has no kindness. But she still transforms worlds. Normally, the Doctor would oppose the Master's plan for a ridiculous conquering of the universe that would amount to universal destruction. Here, that's the Rani's role.

    That's why the Doctor ends up supporting a neoliberal status quo: The Rani has usurped the Doctor's role as an agent of creative change. So all the Doctor does is observe, report, and put the world back on the path it was on before the intervention. In the Deadly Assassin entry, Phil described Terrance Dicks' vision of the Time Lords as technocrats who keep the universe running to an already-determined set of rules. The Rani has made the Doctor just another Time Lord.

    Is that what the exorcism amounts to? A season where all the de-powering tendencies of the Saward era come to their most extreme vision? Where from all aspects of his character, his narrative, and his show, the Doctor's freedom is destroyed?


  18. Alan
    May 9, 2012 @ 7:28 am

    This was actually the first episode when I really saw Master/Doctor slash. The Master is plainly stalking the Doctor — he must have gotten to that field at least half an hour in advance just so he could disguise himself as a scarecrow for the sole purpose of spying on the Doctor for the three minutes it took them to walk down that road. He can easily kill the Doctor but refuses to do so, opting instead to kill his romantic rival, the TARDIS, by throwing it down a hole. Then, he helps the Doctor escape by being so monumentally stupid as to fall for the "I don't believe what you're showing me on TV, you'd better take me outside and let me see it in person" trick. Honestly, if Six had tried to, he probably could have saved everyone a lot of trouble and just seduced the Master into betraying the Rani. (Kinda makes me wish I wrote slashfic — there's an idea there.)

    And, crucially, it’s just her name. It’s not like the Rani is built meaningfully out of Hindu mythology. That would be absolutely fantastic – if Doctor Who actually started doing real and serious engagement with non-Western mythologies – but it’s not going on here.

    Can you imagine the subtlety and sensitivity that JNT, Pip and Jane would have brought to an evil Time Lord villainess expressly based on Hindu mythology and culture? We'd probably have gotten Kate O'Mara in brownface!


  19. jane
    May 9, 2012 @ 7:54 am

    More properly, we'd get her in blueface.


  20. Janjy Giggins
    May 9, 2012 @ 7:58 am

    Years ago on Outpost Gallifrey there was a fan art competition which asked you to reimagine a story if it had taken place in a different era of the show. I painted a cover for 'Doctor Who and the Luddites', featuring Hartnell, the Monk and a Rani played by Jean Marsh in full Indian queen regalia. It was in black and white, so I managed to avoid the whole brownface question…


  21. Anton B
    May 9, 2012 @ 8:27 am

    In a way it does. The Doctor and the Master are both able to slip into roles at will. Think of Tennant's easy adoption (twice) of a schoolteacher's job or The Master (possibly more bizarrely) becoming a vicar and Prime Minister. These renegade Time Lords at least seem to be aware of their fictional nature and can adopt roles within the story just as the Commedia archetypes can stand in for any character within their own reality and simultaneously be aware and make the audience aware of their status as somehow 'beyond' the narrative. A bit like the Marx Brothers are always the same archetypes whatever 'jobs' they are shown having. Davison was certainly Peirrot, Tom Baker could have been Pulcinella I just liked the linguistic neatness as identifying the Doctor as Dottore.


  22. Alan
    May 9, 2012 @ 10:31 am

    For all that Colin Baker defines the part with bluster and bombast he is, in a sense, more ineffectual here than his predecessor ever was, simply because there’s no effect to be had.

    I'm not sure I buy this interpretation. One does not have to be a neoliberal to think that short circuiting the Industrial Revolution would be a Bad Thing. The Doctor is a force for the status quo in that he does not want history to be changed for the worse. The Master has an absurd idea about using George Stevenson and his mastery of steam technology to enslave first the human race and then the universe. The Rani initially doesn't care so long as she gets her magic brain juice, but to her discredit, she is eventually persuaded to go along with the Master's lunacy. Also, I did not take the episode to mean that the Rani caused all the violent upheavels in human history, merely that she sought them out so that her experiments would not attract the undue attention one would expect from an upswing in mindless violence.

    I will say that I do admire this story for showing that Six, for all his faults, is generally competent. He anticipates the trap the Master and the Rani have laid for him, turns the tables on them and captures them, and even predicts correctly that the Master will try to hypnotise Peri. Certainly, the scene where he threatens the two of them with the tissue compression eliminator unless the Rani rescues Peri isn't one I could see Davison's Doctor taking his place.


  23. Aaron
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:12 am

    And the book of the war treats Morbius as one of the four renegades from the newest generation of the Great Houses: a generation spanning quite a long time, and involving The Imperator Presidency (Morbius), The War King (The Master), Grandfather Paradox, and one other that for some reason is absent from the Book (I wonder which renegade that could be?).


  24. WGPJosh
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:14 am

    If renegade Time Lords are stripped of their names and identities whilst those who stay on Gallifrey, or ar at least "ex-pats" keep them, what about Romana? Where does she fit into this alchemical terminology? I'd feel hard-pressed to call her a Gallifreyan loyalist and no, here I'm not counting Big Finish.


  25. Elizabeth Sandifer
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:17 am

    Well, the Time Lords certainly seem to think she's theirs long after she defects to E-Space. But she may well disagree. I think it really comes down to what she was/is (she is, after all, by far the easiest Time Lord to bring back in the new series) doing in E-Space. In which case, it's telling that BBV did a pair of audio adventures featuring a licensed K-9 and his unnamed "Mistress" played by Lalla Ward.


  26. WGPJosh
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:29 am

    I like that answer! I was hoping you'd mention BBV.


  27. timelord7202
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:18 pm

    Let's play "what part of the Doctor's disguise is ill-advised."


    Good point on the Rani's name as well… now I also want to go back and look at your entry for "Kinda" (and "Snakedance"…)

    Not sure on how the Rani is a gay icon, though… turning a person into a tree (hard wood?) doesn't seem much of an allegory or allusion, but a fun pun nonetheless…

    And Kate O'Mara is indeed wonderful, with plenty of wonderful villainous moments… that and her antiseptic and amoral nature and being so different despite being a villain trope… maybe that's why I adore her as a character…

    Great discussion of the "story endorses progress" paragraph as well…

    Nice nod to Roy Cohn as well…

    I would say that the "Revelation" of the Daleks is Davros now using and converting humanoids to their form (and setting up the basis for "Remembrance"…)

    And "the mark of" the Rani does end up, as you said, being a literal mark on the people she alters. A more grand version of the phrase would be an attempt of her to do something big with history, as she's cajoled into doing thanks to the Master, but it all fails, so there is no mark in the end… though your paragraph about "grapheme" made for some good reading as well…

    The tree mines are the biggest blunder the story offers. It's more sci-fantasy and it's not a bad concept… oh, until one moves and saves Peri… ugh…

    Oh, "The Mark of the Rani" is one of my favorite Doc6 stories, but loved your analysis to be sure!)


  28. timelord7202
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:21 pm

    Fantasy or not, that's true – stuck as a tree incapable of moving would be a tad horrific…

    P&J, regardless of plot quibbles, clearly know how to do Doc6's character right. Ditto for "Vervoids" as the Doctor does display some decent doses of compassion… Doc6 is much varied in persona, but when his good side comes through it steals the show. And Colin Baker does deliver it with aplomb…


  29. Henry R. Kujawa
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:22 pm

    Your last paragraph describes almost exactly what I do like about Colin's Doctor. It's too bad his stories weren't more like the tone of the first half of "ATTACK" or most of "RANI" (more light-hearted, less homicidal). But what "RANI" really needs is a plot. Honestly, between this, Part 14 of the "TRIAL", "TIME AND THE RANI", and of course "CAPTAIN NEMO AND THE UNDERWATER CITY", Pip & Jane seem good at dialogue and terrible on plot & structure. The one they they batted one out of the ballpark was when they blatently ripped off Alistair Maclean's "GOLDEN RENDEZVOUS" (then kept trying to convince everyone they were ripping off Agatha Christie instead, probably so no one would notice how really blatent it was).

    By the way, I thought you could really see how much The Master hated Peri in this one, because, while not that bright, she was bull-headed enough so that he was unable to hypnotize her. So he just wanted her dead!!

    Janjy Giggins:
    "I painted a cover for 'Doctor Who and the Luddites', featuring Hartnell, the Monk and a Rani played by Jean Marsh in full Indian queen regalia."

    Too bad they didn't cast Caroline Munro. I never thought Kate O'Mara was that much of a looker, and Munro is part-Indian.


  30. BerserkRL
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:22 pm

    the Rani, who seems almost completely disinterested in historical processes

    [pedantry]I think you mean "uninterested." She's not disinterested at all.[/pedantry]


  31. BerserkRL
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:24 pm

    it’s not clear what, exactly, is revealed about the Daleks

    I assumed it was just a Bible joke. Genesis is the first book of the Bible, Revelation is the last book.


  32. BerserkRL
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:36 pm

    she dismisses moral concerns over her transformation of people into trees by suggesting that all organic material is essentially interchangeable)

    This was Sade's defense of homicide, which was in turn derived from Hume's defense of suicide. SImilar ideas were abroad in ancient India (judging from references in the Nikaya-sutras).


  33. BerserkRL
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:41 pm

    Think of Tennant's easy adoption (twice) of a schoolteacher's job

    Three times if you count the Catherine Tate sketch.


  34. Alan
    May 9, 2012 @ 12:46 pm

    –blinks repeatedly —

    I realize now that you meant the Marquis De Sade, but for a full five seconds, I stared at your post in wonder as I tried to remember when Sade, the British smooth jazz band responsible for "Smooth Operator" and "The Sweetest Taboo," came out in defense of homicide! On one of their later albums perhaps?


  35. gregmcduck
    May 9, 2012 @ 1:24 pm

    My Doctor-Who n00bism has come through, as I thought Planet of Fire would be the Master's last appearance till the TV movie and was pretty happy about that. Why is he even in this? He doesn't have anything to do with anything, and just seems to be stealing time from the character who I'm pretty sure was designed to REPLACE him.

    That said, I didn't so much like the Rani as I liked the theory of the Rani, someone who isn't out to cause chaos like the Master but wreck other people's shit for the sake of the civilization she already controls, and her plan isn't really about destroying the industrial revolution, that's just where she happened to land. The amoral scientist who keeps dinosaur fetuses in jars could have been a fun idea if they ditched the Master and tightened things up.


  36. BerserkRL
    May 9, 2012 @ 2:05 pm

    LOL! Well, maybe that's what the sweetest taboo was.


  37. ferret
    May 9, 2012 @ 4:43 pm

    Agreed, my recent re-watching of the story left me frustrated – it seems we're going to explore this new character the Rani, but then the Master turns up and completely de-rails her: she never gets a chance to shine on her own terms. It feels like this would have been a completely different story without the Master.


  38. Anton B
    May 9, 2012 @ 8:39 pm

    Now that was post-modern metatextuality gone mad. You're right. Also Troughton's many hats and Pertwee's Scientific Advisor, not to mention Matt Smith's call centre and dept. store temping. You can't say Time Lords are work shy. Have I missed any?


  39. Anton B
    May 9, 2012 @ 8:45 pm

    I'm eagerly awaiting Exodus of the Daleks, Prophets of the Daleks and Psalms of the Daleks.


  40. Matt Sharp
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:04 pm

    I remember reading a DWM interview with Pip & Jane where they said that JNT had given them a shopping list of things to include, and one of them was the Master. However, they didn't want to include him, which is why they don't bother to give any explanation about how he escaped from his predicament at the end of 'Planet of Fire'. Or give him anything very much to do. Or any character whatsoever.

    I find it very odd that they seem to have written something without actually knowing what they're writing, either, just having a vague idea of what Doctor Who is. I assume this is the reason that this is the first time that the Doctor meets an actual genuine historical character since Doc Holliday waved him off in 1966…

    It sort of works. Then again, they had a go at writing an Adventure Gamebook without bothering to find out what an Adventure Gamebook actually is, so there you go.

    Dabbling in forces you don't understand is alchemy, I suppose, but on this occasion it's pretty much just made a mess.


  41. elvwood
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:12 pm

    I've often felt that Pip & Jane write the sixth Doctor well – his dialogue here is great. It's just unfortunate when you get the Master and the Rani using much the same vocabulary. Still, I have a liking for this story, I consider Terror of the Vervoids the best Trial section, and I hardly blame them for the awfulness of The Ultimate Foe given the conditions they were working under. As you say, Sixie is a more complex personality in their stories.

    And thanks to those who have given me the possibility of a redemptive reading of the tree mines, which isn't something I thought possible!


  42. elvwood
    May 9, 2012 @ 11:16 pm

    And don't forget Job of the Daleks


  43. Matthew Blanchette
    May 10, 2012 @ 6:43 am

    So, what does that make Remembrance? The Koran? ๐Ÿ˜›


  44. Anton B
    May 10, 2012 @ 1:07 pm

    Hilarious. Who were these jokers? Where did JNT find them? I mean really, what was he thinking? I'd describe it more as Alchaos i.e. attempted alchemy but without rules. Now look what you've done, cursed Sixth Doctor era, you've made me make up a word!


  45. Stephen
    May 13, 2012 @ 1:39 pm

    "This may, in fact, be one of the most schizoid stories in the series history when it comes to politics. On the one hand you have a story that revels in introducing a camp gay icon. On the other, it uncritically ends up endorsing neoliberal economic policies."

    I don't see what's schizoid about that. Gay rights issues are not remotely connected to economic policy. Given that support for neoliberal economics is ubiquitous amongst the political classes (in the UK, it's a position held by Labour, the Lib Dems, and the Tories. In the US it's a position held by both the Republicans and the Democrats), there's no tension whatsoever between these two political positions.


  46. Tom
    May 14, 2012 @ 12:31 am

    I take the idea that a female villain who is plainly sociopathic, scientific and the Master's better is designed to be a gay icon incredibly reductionist simply because Kate O'Mara had been cast. Bear in mind, Dynasty hadn't started yet, and Triangle isn't that notable beyond it having Kate O'Mara in it, there's nothing of her reputation as an actress that would inherently suggest she was a camp icon. She may have become one, retrospectively, but at the time she would not have been designed as one. Visual identifiers such as flamboyant make-up, large shoulders or her mark being a make up smear, are symptoms of the age she appears in, not the culture she was 'designed to be a part of.'

    I think Sandifer's comments regarding Pertwee's flamboyance and Turlough being a 'cowardly' gay man, speaks more about his American cultural upbringing than about a shonky British TV show from thirty years ago.

    So, again, I ask Sandifer: what aspects of her character make her designed as a gay icon?


  47. orfeo
    April 10, 2017 @ 11:17 am

    Interesting insights, such as the ineffectiveness of the Doctor, mixed with distracting tosh such as claiming that Kate O’Mara is mockable and a gay icon.


  48. darkspine10
    October 27, 2017 @ 8:20 am

    One good thing about the story is the music that opens up episode 1. Jonathan Gibbs’ score for the opening is just some of the most beautiful music ever composed for the show, and I love the brief glimpse of ordinary life we get during the sequence. Of course, it all goes wrong once we enter the bath house, but at least it’s just a dull story as opposed to an actively horrible one.


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