DOCTOR WHO CLASSIC REVIEW: THE AWAKENING (1984)
Peter Davison was the first classic Doctor I ever watched. I first saw him in the five Doctors and later got the new beginnings boxset which included his very first story Castravalva. I brought this it 2015 and since then I haven’t really watched many of his episodes and instead focused way more on other Doctor’s eras. However recently I have been interested in the 5th Doctor’s era way more, especially his last series. I have some of his last series, but I want to complete it by watching Frontios, The Awakening and Planet Of Fire. The Awakening was the first story out of these I decided to buy, and it was a very interesting one. It was only two parts long and unlike some of the other two partners in this series that were 45 minutes per part The Awakening was unfortunately only 25 minutes per part. I’m not sure why season 21 had such a random format but I am guessing it had something to do with when it was scheduled on TV. Whilst very short The Awakening was a decent little story which has made me want to watch more of Peter Davison.
I have always found Peter Davison’s Doctor to be similar to David Tennants, except Davison had a lot less character development. However, in his last season his character did develop a lot more and it’s made me appreciate him more than I used to. The Awakening started off very slow with the Tardis team landing in 1984 to meet Tegan’s Grandfather. I found this very odd and completely random. He had gone missing in a village that was completely closed off so that they could take part in the enactment of war games. There are quite a lot of plot holes with this story, although it got a lot better as the story progressed and the Malus was introduced. The Malus was a mystical creature that landed on earth and used psychic power to bring different time periods together. I thought the Malus was an interesting villain and was similar to the Beast in The Impossible Planet/ The Saturn Pit (2006). With more screen time this could have been such a classic episode as the idea was so strong. Unfortunately, the story fell a bit flat and got caught up too much with the war games which I found a bit irrelevant. The ending to this story was a decent one but overall, it was a missed opportunity.
The side cast in The Awakening was very average. Whilst some of them had good moments there wasn’t really enough time for them to develop. The Doctor was really good as he was light hearted and whilst there wasn’t much character development it is always refreshing to watch a Doctor like Peter Davison as he comes across very optimistic. Tegan in my opinion is one of the most annoying companions ever. I always feel like she doesn’t want to be there, and she just gets herself in bad situations all the time. This is probably the biggest reason why I haven’t watched much of the 5th Doctors era. Turlough is a companion who gets hardly any screen time. It is a shame because I find him very interesting and mysterious. He was good in this story but as per usual he did not have enough to do.
To conclude, The Awakening was a nice little story in a great season. It had a great idea but unfortunately it wasn’t long enough and focused the time it did have on completely random and irrelevant events. I have missed watching Peter Davison as the Doctor and he was definitely the best part of The Awakening. I will continue to watch more of his era and hopefully enjoy it a lot more.
I rate The Awakening a 5.5/10.
Written by: AUTHOR NAME
Hi I’m Jacob and I am one of the writers for this website. I do classic reviews, big finish reviews and news articles. I hope you all enjoyed:)