This is more or less an inside joke (for those who are inside the Utah-BYU rivalry), but I couldn't think of a video to put with this review. If you get it, great. If not, scroll down for my review of "The God Complex."
I'm sure there's some great and grand underlying Meaning-with-a-Capital-M to "The God Complex" and I'm pretty sure I know what it is (and I'm pretty sure I don't like it). I'm sure the podcasters will be in full-force tonight and tomorrow morning praising this story for all its subtleties and how masterful Toby Whithouse and Steven Moffat are as writers and only the brainless oafs in Whodom won't be able to get it and aren't we so wonderful and clever and intelligent for understanding the Deeper Meaning they have given us (maybe even throwing in a "Praise Them" as a cocky little in-joke).
Well, count me as a brainless oaf in Whodom because I did not understand that story for one second.
Actually, let me clarify - I understood the ending. I understood the fact that the Doctor cares about Amy and Rory (maybe Amy more than Rory - if hard-pressed to admit it) and his feelings run deep enough to unceremoniously dump them off in Leadworth after a particularly harrowing adventure (I guess I shouldn't say "unceremoniously." Sarah Jane got "unceremoniously"). I got that part and I got the emotions they were going for and, for a little while at least, I started to buy into it (the Doctor calling her "Amy Williams" very nearly had the waterworks going - because the day she becomes "Amy Williams" is the day that she grows up. By extension, I'll have to grow up. And won't that just suck?)
Then the "Next Time" trailer popped up and I was all - Oh that's the Craig guy from "The Lodger!"
Honestly, "The God Complex" felt like two stories crammed into one. At one point, I threw down my pen from taking notes and just said "I don't get it!" I knew we were meant to care about these people lost in this labyrinth-spaceship-thing (if Rita's cue-the-dramatic-music-super-slo-mo death was any indication) but I didn't. Not as much as I was meant to, I think. I almost think this story would have been better served as a two-parter - but I'm not sure how it would work. I mean, there's only so much you can do with running through an old hotel and finding scary things in the rooms.
I wanted to care about this story - I really, really did. And the concept was a good one - what is more scary than losing your faith in whatever you have faith in? I do like that the Doctor pointed out that faith doesn't necessarily mean religious faith (so you can all stop screaming at us already) - it could mean faith in luck or in yourself or whatever. It made the story work on that level - I just wish they would have spent more time on that and less time on "Oooh - lookit us - it's "Doctor Who" and we're being scary again for the sake of being scary - run behind the couch kiddles! ha ha! No, really - go hide behind the couch...." It worked once or twice, but now it's getting old.
...sigh... I truly, truly hate to be one of Those People who find fault with so many things and whines about it all. And the sad thing is that I get what they were trying to do with this story - but it fell a little flat for me. I need to care about the characters, for a start. And don't give me the whole "Well, they only have these characters here for one story and you have to get rid of them" because the Doctor Who writers have done that time and again and it's been credible. Even as recently as "Night Terrors" - I truly cared about little George and his dad. I really could care less about Howie and Rita (even if she is clever) and that one pointy-eared guy that looked like he wandered off the set of "The Grinch."
I dunno... maybe on a rewatch I'll get it better, but right now, I'm kind of left out in the cold with this.
Bottom Line: Make "The Rebel Flesh" a one-episode story and "The God Complex" a two-parter and maybe you'd have something worth discussing. For now, I'm just "meh..."