SPOILERS FOR THE EPISODE AND EDIT FOLLOW:
Smile was a story badly in need of a mystery to go with the exploration…something that the pre-titles unfortunately eroded right from the outset by revealing what the problem was, what was behind it, and the fate of the colonists.
As Moffat once said about unsurprising reveals on the Earthshock DVD, ”if the story was called Robots of Death, it’s whodunnit status was completely compromised”…well, while the title may not give much away here, maybe you should try to make sure the first few minutes of the episode don’t do the same…so out it goes, the first of some rather minimal changes overall to the story.
Yes, I actually like this one despite the lack of a good strong hook for The Doctor and Bill as they build on their relationship and banter. It’s a very nice step-by-step guide to the wonders of The Doctor’s world and there’s your typical moment where a companion learns a harsh truth about where it is that humanity is going. The only other thing at fault with the story that I can’t fix admittedly is the I.T crowd ending.
As it stands, I like the episode so much that there’s not much to edit other than provide a much stronger opening for proceedings…which is supplied by using what was cut from my edit of ”The Pilot”…The Doctor inviting Bill on board the TARDIS. Simple as that.
From there, a few trims repurpose ”Smile”s original pre-titles footage [the parts with The Doctor and Bill anyway] into post-titles footage, and they’re soon on the planet exploring the colony and we build on the now newly instated mystery of what happened to everyone.
For the ending, it’s back to the story arc we begun in the edit of ”The Pilot” involving Bill’s future dwelling, and we learn the fate of one of the new residents…I don’t really know how much of ”Knock, Knock” I’ll be left with once the time comes to wrap this devil up, but we’ll see. Thankfully the footage here is minimal.
Don’t look for any fancy custom next times or end credits this time to reflect the changes…I really, really, can’t be arsed doing all that. I have no time. So we crash after the final scene into the executive producer credits at the very end.
Next week, the more radical changes resume…but I must ask a question made famous by a most animated talk show host of the nineties…are you getting enough OXYGEN?
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