Doctor Who: The RTD Years Vol. 1 - Revisiting ARMY OF GHOSTS - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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Doctor Who: The RTD Years Vol. 1 - Revisiting ARMY OF GHOSTS

There’s something quite splendid about traipsing through the Whoniverse, much like trudging through your old family photo album. Remember the days when spectres became as normal as a London traffic jam? Ah, memories! Russell T Davies’s "Army of Ghosts" is much like that awkward family photo where Uncle Bob wore that hideous sweater—strangely unforgettable.

Setting the (London) Stage

The backdrop of London serves not merely as a geographical pin but as a character in itself. It’s as if the city, in its historical and modern complexity, invites interdimensional hijinks. It’s almost as if the Daleks and Cybermen went, “Hey, you know where would be great for an invasion? That place with the big clock!” But, ah, the ghosts... How they transformed the landscape!

These spectres weren’t your usual moan-in-the-night, rattle-some-chains kind of spooks. No, they're more the “float around the Shard and wave at tourists” variety. It’s the ultimate RTD twist—something hauntingly alien yet endearingly mundane.

From Spectacle to Spectre

Humans, as ever, show an unmatched ability to adapt. One day they're screaming at the apparitions, and the next, they’re setting an extra plate for ghostly Grandma at Sunday lunch. Here, Davies showcases the comical resilience of humans, making the surreal a new form of reality, without missing a comedic beat.

Torchwood: More Drama Than Your Aunt's Book Club

For an organization that deals with extraterrestrial phenomena, Torchwood is spectacularly human. Behind all that tech and swagger, it's a potpourri of ambition, curiosity, and the occasional dash of "we didn’t think this through." Davies doesn't just throw Torchwood into the mix; he uses them as a reflection of humanity's many faces—from the curious to the downright foolish.

Cybermen vs. Daleks: When Egos Collide

You know how parties can be a bit dull, but then two guests who clearly have unresolved issues bump into each other, and suddenly, it’s entertainment gold? That’s the Cybermen and the Daleks. Both have had their share of battles with the Doctor, but seeing them together is like watching two divas argue over the spotlight.

The Cybermen’s reimagined origin from a parallel universe brings them closer to humanity. It's no longer about cold metal; there’s a heart, albeit a stolen one, beating inside. On the other side, the Daleks remain, well, Daleks—metallic, angry pepper pots. Their unexpected entry is like a twist in a soap opera, the sort where you spill your popcorn in surprise.

Rose Tyler: Not Just a Plus One

In "Army of Ghosts," Rose isn’t just the Doctor's sidekick. She's a force, a fulcrum on which the narrative pivots. Her journey, intertwined with that of the Doctor, approaches its zenith. But it's not all about the running and the saving. There are moments, beautifully crafted by Davies, that delve deep into the psyche of Rose—the human, the traveler, the lover.

And let’s not forget Jackie Tyler. A mom, a reflection of mundane London life, thrown into the whirlwind of the Doctor’s adventures. Through her, we witness the raw, human emotional response to these 'ghosts'. She grounds the narrative, reminding us that beyond the interdimensional drama, there are human stories, human losses, and human hopes.

Storytelling Genius: Davies’s Narrative Arsenal

Davies uses misdirection like a magician uses sleight of hand. The benign nature of the ghosts lulls us into a false sense of ethereal mystery. The reveal of their true identity? Pure narrative gold.

The episodic linkage is undeniable. The Void Ship isn’t just a snazzy plot device—it's a seed sown in the very fabric of the series, a narrative echo from adventures past. It's these threads that make "Doctor Who" more than just episodic TV. It's a saga, and Davies, with his intricate weaving, ensures every thread counts.

The Episode's Legacy: Ghosts of Stories Past and Future

“Army of Ghosts” isn’t just a precursor to the grandeur of "Doomsday." It’s a nod to stories past, a bridge to tales yet untold. The Cybermen's alternate origin connects to the heart of "Rise of the Cybermen/The Age of Steel," while the Void Ship teases the Time Lord's future.

Davies’s genius lies in ensuring no story stands alone. It's a vast, interwoven narrative galaxy, and “Army of Ghosts” is a shining star within, reminding us of the intricate beauty of the Whoniverse.

In Conclusion:

"Army of Ghosts" is a rollercoaster of emotions, from joy to dread, from laughter to tears. It is Russell T Davies saying, "Sit down, get comfy, but don’t get too comfortable." Because in the world of Doctor Who, just when you think you’ve seen it all, a Cyberman might just pop out of your toaster.

And isn't that what makes it all so brilliantly mad?

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