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Doctor Who: The Snowmen(TV) (2012)
Christmas Eve, 1892, and the falling snow is the stuff of fairytales. When the fairytale becomes a nightmare and a chilling menace threatens Earth, an unorthodox young governess, Clara, calls on the Doctor for help. But the Doctor is in mourning, reclusive and determined not to engage in the problems of the universe. As old friends return, will the Doctor really abandon humankind, or will he fight to save the world and Christmas from the icy clutches of this mysterious menace?
For more about Doctor Who: The Snowmen and the Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray release, see Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray Review published by Kenneth Brown on June 9, 2013 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.5 out of 5.
Starring: Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill, Alex Kingston, David Tennant, Christopher Eccleston
Narrators: Nicholas Briggs, Marnix Van Den Broeke
Directors: Adam Smith, Ben Wheatley, Jeremy Webb, Toby Haynes, Graeme Harper, Euros Lyn
» See full cast & crew
Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray Review
Jack Frost nipping at your nose?
Reviewed by Kenneth Brown, June 9, 2013
After retiring dear companions Amy Pond and Rory Williams in Series Seven, Part One, the show's 2012 Christmas Special, Doctor Who: The Snowmen, introduces... or rather re-introduces an enigma wrapped inside of a feisty young woman named Clara Oswald (Jenna-Louise Coleman); a feisty young woman who just so happens to be the Doctor's next companion. Breathing fresh life into Matt Smith's run as the Eleventh Doctor, Clara, together with Coleman's charming, quick-witted performance, re-energizes Smith and, in Series Seven, Part Two, the series, both of which were showing signs of fatigue. The Christmas Special isn't just a standalone free-for-all, though. Its villain, the Great Intelligence, rears its virtual head throughout the seventh series. Its chief attraction, the Impossible Girl, aka Clara, intrigues the Doctor for the first of many times to come. And the story, while a bit on the campy side of the Who-verse, is a fun slice of Victorian London adventure, with just enough chills, thrills and heart to make for a proper Doctor Who Christmas Special.
Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray, Video Quality
Doctor Who: The Snowmen offers a strong, stable 1080i/AVC-encoded video presentation that, minor flaws aside, is comparable to those featured on previous high definition releases of the show. Detractors will continue to complain that the image is too noisy, with a hyper-sharp, faux-filmic harshness that undermines the integrity of the special. Rather than quibble over the show's aesthetic, though, let's focus on the precision and proficiency of the encode. Color, contrast and clarity adhere to the showrunners' intentions, black levels are suitably deep when called upon, and detail is terrific, with crisp edge definition and exceedingly revealing textures. Delineation suffers and crush is out in force, but both trace back to the source, not BBC Home Entertainment's efforts or the quality of the presentation. Likewise, slight, almost negligible aliasing and ringing pops up from time to time, but barely registers, much less distracts. On the whole, The Snowmen looks every bit as fantastic as it should. It isn't always an attractive special -- the visual effects leave something to be desired, the unevenness of the grain-like noise is undeniable, the shadows are thick and heavy, and that patented BBC "video" feel is in full swing -- and yet no Who fan should be surprised at this point. This is The Snowmen as it was shot and prepped for broadcast, and its Blu-ray release couldn't fare much better than it does.
Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray, Audio Quality
Ditching DTS-HD High Resolution audio for the first time, Doctor Who: The Snowmen, like Series Seven, Part Two, boasts a full-fledged DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track. And while the difference between DTS-HD HR and DTS-HD MA may be minute, the show's most recent eight episodes leave a mark. LFE output is bold and booming. Rear speaker activity is dense and convincing, with smooth pans, accurate directionality and an enveloping soundfield that makes the most of the snow creature attacks, the ice governess chase and the showdown with the Great Intelligence. Better still, overall dynamics are excellent and dialogue is clean, clear and perfectly prioritized at all times.
Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Three extras are included: Clara's White Christmas (HD, 3 minutes), a quick trip behind the snowy scenes of the 2012 Christmas Special; Vastra Investigates (HD, 3 minutes), a Christmas Special prequel; and The Great Detective (HD, 3 minutes), a Madame Vastra, Jenny Flint and Strax short.
Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Doctor Who: The Snowmen isn't the best series Christmas Special in recent memory (that honor goes to Doctor Who: A Christmas Carol), but between the Doctor's soon-to-be companion Clara, Coleman's performance, Smith's charisma and the one-two... erm, three punch that is Vastra, Jenny and Strax, The Snowmen is a holiday treat, even in the middle of a muggy American summer. The Blu-ray release is backed by an excellent AV presentation (featuring a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround track), and only fails in terms of supplements, of which there aren't very many. Still, Those who've already purchased Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part One will want to nab Part Two and The Snowmen to round out their set.
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Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Exclusive Giveaway: Doctor Who Series Seven, Part Two & The Snowmen - May 24, 2013
Blu-ray.com and BBC Home Entertainment are offering three members a chance to win Blu-ray copies of Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part Two and Doctor Who: The Snowmen, which star Matt Smith as the Eleventh Doctor and Jenna-Louise Coleman as his newest Companion. The ...
• Doctor Who: The Snowmen Blu-ray (Updated) - April 17, 2013
BBC Home Entertainment has revealed plans to release a single-disc, standalone edition of Doctor Who: The Snowmen, the long-running science fiction series' 2012 Christmas Special. The Snowmen streets on May 28th alongside the 2-disc Blu-ray release of Series Seven, ...
• Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part Two Blu-ray Detailed (Updated) - March 27, 2013
BBC Home Entertainment has detailed the two-disc Blu-ray release of Doctor Who: Series Seven, Part Two, which features the next eight episodes in the long-running science fiction show. New companions, new enemies and new dangers await the Eleventh Doctor (Matthew ...
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