Is it very wrong of me to be unable to decide whether this was a decent episode or not because of my visceral disgust with David Tennant's hideous 50's hairdo?
Nah, it was more than that. I mean, okay, it was an endearingly quirky concept, reminiscent (to me, anyway) of the Seventh Doctor ep The Greatest Show in the Galaxy (which I actually liked, once I got over the shock) in its unadulterated campiness. But in this case the wacky camera angles and other visual tricks weren't so much clever as they were distracting, and the green-screen stuff, of which there was a lot, was... not good.
Also, Rose and the Doctor continued their routine of being so annoyingly smug that I wanted to beat both of them about the head and shoulders -- and did whoever was directing this one actually tell Tennant to chew the scenery up and spit it out all over the place in every scene? Feh. We know the man can act: so I can only suppose that the choice to play everything with the volume turned up to ten (heh) was deliberate. Unfortunately, it didn't work for me because it was so heavily overplayed, so when Rose's face (predictably) got stolen (and what was up with that anyway?) and the Doctor flipped his lid, the only response I felt myself able to give was a resounding whatever. And what happened to the Doctor who cared about injustice and oppression for its own sake, and was capable of passionate anger on behalf of people he barely even knew (*cough*Five*cough*), so that it hardly made a difference whether one of his own companions was involved or not? This "Oh, you've dared to lay a finger on Her Majesty Rose Tyler, now it's personal" stuff just makes me itch.
Gee, I guess that means I didn't like the episode, come to think of it. Although it had its good points, like Tommy (who reminded me a bit of William Moseley, which is always a good thing) and Inspector Bishop. The Wire was dead creepy, too... if I were a kid I would definitely have been watching this one from behind the sofa. But a couple of good supporting roles and a high scare factor do not, alas, a good episode make, at least not for me.
Better luck next week, I guess. Though I seem to be saying that a lot these days. *sigh*