By JD Phillips
Well, it’s over. Team Tardis is done until New Year’s. While the finale wasn’t as ambitious as I would’ve hoped, it still proved to be a worthy addition to the new season.
“The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos” put a proper button on the season even though it didn’t push the cast as hard as it could have. That’s not to say that it didn’t continue to get mileage out of the cast. Yaz and the Doctor took up a lot of the action hero duties this week as they battled against the returning Tzim-Sha. While they handled the majority of the universe saving, the real heart of the action was centered around Graham and Ry.
In a very uncharacteristic (but 100% understandable) dark move, Graham informed the Doctor upfront what he intended on Tzim-Sha. The death of Grace has loomed over the entire season so it makes sense that the finale would feature the long-awaited chance at revenge.
The moral conundrum that Graham deals with throughout the episode shows why Graham is by far the best of the three companions. His journey to finally not seek revenge was very compelling. It was buttoned with a perfect fist bump between Ry and his now fully accepted grandfather.
I do hope that Tzim-Sha makes it out of the prison that Graham puts him in. It’s sad that we didn’t have more compelling recurring villains this season, but Tzim-Sha was definitely the season’s highlight. If he had more development, he could end up holding his own as a truly malevolent presence across the series in after Jodie Whittaker leaves.
All in all, the episode was a perfectly functional season finale. It’s hard to really find something about the episode I had a problem with. Still, I feel a bit let down. The show felt as though it was leading towards some of the wildly emotional and heartbreaking moments “Doctor Who” is known for.
Perhaps it’s just time to accept the more low conflict, happy show that Chris Chibnall surprisingly wants to go for. In a time of such real-world conflict, that’s not such a bad thing.
Regardless, it’s going to be a long wait until we can see Team Tardis again. Even if it is only until New Year’s.