Doctor Who 11×05 Review: The Tsuranga Conundrum

Welcome to the fifth adventure of Thirteen, the episode whose title sounds like we are watching The Big Bang Theory. If I have to be honest, this is so far my least favourite of the five, but it is also the one with my favourite monster, the ultra-cute, Lord Nibbler-like Pting. Even the name sounds adorable.

Forgive me, I will tell you about the episode now. The Doctor and his friends are hanging out at a junkyard, as you do, when they come across a sonic mine. Bad news. Its blast knocks them off, waking up in a hospital (a spaceship hospital, as we’ll find out). The Tsuranga from the title is the ship’s name, and its occupants are Astos and Mebli, the medics in charge, Eve Cicero, a general travelling with her brother Durkas and her robot husband (?) Ronan. Oh, and Yoss, this man who happens to be pregnant, like your regular Schwarzenegger.

The main problem is, besides the fact that the Doctor wants to go back to the junkyard where they have left the TARDIS, that there is an unknown creature destroying the ship. When Astos goes to an escape pod to investigate, the creature manages to ship him off, causing the pod to explode.

It is not too late before we discover that the creature doing all this is the adorable Pting, with eyes to match those of Puss in Boots and a hunger for pretty much anything. To make it to Resus One, the ship’s destination, safe, they need to remove the autopilot from the ship and do it manually, which is only managed after engineer Durkas does some engineering work (I’m clueless) and his sister gets to take them to Resus safely. Almost safely, because she has a heart condition that kills her before she can get there, and her brother finishes the journey for her.

There are other stories in there, like Ryan and Graham acting as Yoss’s dhoulas when he goes into labour, Ryan revealing to Yaz that his mum died of a heart attack and that caused his father to leave, or the fact that the Doctor mentioned Hamilton and I lost it completely. Oh! I didn’t tell you the end of the story! The Doctor discovered that beneath the antimatter that run the ship, there was a bomb. She put the bomb in a pod and lured the cutie-pie Pting into it, knowing it craved energy. Now the Pting is somewhere in space, well-fed for at least a few months, right?


The ship where it happens

-I have never watched Call the Midwife, but Graham almost made me want to check out a couple of episodes, just for the sake of it. Although I am terrified of labour and I never want to go through it or witness one in any way.

-I want to know what happened at the end of the 67th century. Sounds like a great one!

-“And you, off this ship, back into space, right now! Else you’ll have me to deal with!” the Pting doesn’t listen and keeps cutely eating “It just sort of ignored you there, Doc.”

-What will the Avocado Pear legend be?

-Am I assuming heart’s pilot is in space futuristic jargon the point where you need a transplant? It sounded quite terminal.

-I felt so bad for Pting when Yaz kicked it like a football.

-“You’re a medic, I’m the Doctor.” “A doctor of medicine?” “Well, medicine, science, engineering, candyfloss, Lego, philosophy, music, problems, people, hope.”

-That sort of prayer at the end reminded me of the prayers they say in Game of Thrones when someone dies.

-“Are you also experiencing comprehension deficiency?” “Oh, every day right now, mate!”

-“I’d say it was more of a volume than a chapter. Just so you know.”

-“Good number, 51! Atomic number of antimony, number of federalist papers written by Alexander Hamilton. I love that show. I’ve seen all 900 casts.”

-But seriously, where is my Pting stuffed toy?


Read more on the episode:

Digital Spy


The Guardian

Den of Geek

Radio Times

Slash Film

Categories: Doctor Who, Television | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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3 thoughts on “Doctor Who 11×05 Review: The Tsuranga Conundrum

  1. I feel like I enjoyed this episode more than the majority of people did.

    • Ginny C

      Oh, I did like it! The only problem for me was the amount of jargon that made some parts hard to follow. My favourite bits were little character moments, like Ryan talking about his mum, or the general and her brother when she is about to do something that will certainly kill her, for example.

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