Doctor Who: Kinda Review



By Will Barber – Taylor

The Doctor: There’s always something to look at if you open your eyes!

The Doctor, Tegan, Nyssa and Adric arrive on the planet Deva Loca, home of the Kinda. A colony ship from Earth is on the planet, seeing if the planet is suitable to be colonised. The Doctor and Tegan soon discover that Deva Loca has other plans. The Wheel is turning and the Mara is returning.

Kinda was the third story of Peter Davison’s run. After the excellent Castrovalva and the boring Four to Doomsday, Kinda came as a rather nice surprise. The story telling is on top form from newbie Christopher Bailey, who throws himself in with a heavily Buddhist mythology throughout. The direction by Peter Grimmwald uses almost Bowie type music video techniques through which enforces what Bailey is trying to get across. Originally, Kinda was thought to be a bad piece by fans but has since, rightly so, gained new popularity and ranked 69th out of the top 200 Doctor Who stories poll conducted in 2009 by Doctor Who magazine.

Peter Davison truly brings the script to life. Davison knows it is a good script and uses all his ability as an actor to help it reach its potential.  This is particularly noticeable in the scenes with Hindle in which Davison’s Doctor plays the English gent as far as he can go.  Towards the latter end of the story, Davison’s Doctor becomes frustrated but still in control, even though things look dire.  The Doctor admits an energy that makes you know that everything is going to be all right.  In summary, Peter Davison is on top form.

Janet Fielding is excellent as Tegan in the earlier parts, unfortunately, during the later parts of the story, she is hardly seen.  Fielding demonstrates real terror during the scenes when she is trapped in her own mind.  The acting is so truthful that we feel for her and share her terror at being taken over by the Mara. Fielding is even better when she plays the Mara, exhibiting real menace and evil. It’s an anti-climax when we don’t see more from Fielding.  We had a similar situation with Karen Gillian in The Girl Who Waited.   This highlights how good the actresses who play The Doctor’s companions can be if they are given a chance.

Simon Rouse as Hindle, brings a new type of madness to Doctor Who that we don’t normally see. From part one, Rouse slowly builds up Hindle’s insanity to such a point that you begin to wonder whether he is really performing or not. The childlike quality which Rouse brings to Hindle is totally believable. When The Doctor accidently steps on one of Hindle’s toy figures and Sanders suggests they mend the figure, Rouse screams in beautiful madness:

“You can’t mend people!”

Truly, Rouse should get more credit for his performance.

Kinda is one of the best classic Doctor Who stories of all time. After the shamefully bad final Tom Baker season, Doctor Who was back on form. With a new Doctor, new companions, new writers and a newish executive producer, Doctor Who was back and it could not get better than this.

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