Reviews by Jen Chapin-Smith
Catherine Tate returns
»
The fourth series really starts with "Partners in Crime," in which the Doctor reconnects with Donna, whom we met in the previous year's Christmas special "The Runaway Bride." Donna is one of my favorite companions as she is brash, loud and takes no nonsense from anyone. Best of all, she is not in love with the Doctor, unlike so many of his previous companions. She returns to adventuring with the Doctor in this series, which makes it one of my favorite series.

This "Doctor Who" series then continues with a bang--literally as the Doctor and Donna travel to Pompeii on the eve of the volcanic eruption. The episode has some hilarious lines but also lots of sad parts. One could also interpret the portrayal of the religious group as anti-Pagan.

The pair then travel to the Ood world and confront slavery. While this episode is depressing it does bring up the very real problem, which the Doctor points out when he notes that modern-day slaves most of the clothes people in the industrial world of the early 21st century wear. It is refreshing to see a science fiction series tackle this all-too-real problem.
Donna returns
»
This disc contains the Christmas special, now a "Doctor Who" staple and technically not part of the regular series. In this episode (watch the brief special co-staring the fifth doctor as a mini-prequel), the Doctor lands on a spaceship named the Titanic, a name that brings about predictable results. Australian celebrity Kylie Minogue stars as the Doctor's companion for this voyage.

It is a fun one, though, especially with the visually impressive scene in which the Heavenly Host fly the Doctor aloft. The scenes with the Queen are particularly funny, although we never see her face, only hear her voice and see the corgis.

SPOILER ALERT: This episode is rather sad, which is not what I had hoped for in a Christmas special, so be warned.
Fans will like this
»
"Doctor Who Confidential" is not an episode. It is a documentary about the third series of "Doctor Who" that includes interviews with the producers, writers, actors and others. Fans will enjoy it but others might find it a bit dull.
Enterprise
»
"Star Trek" fans will enjoy this series, which portrays the very first Star Fleet mission in the very first starship Enterprise. It is set about 200 years before the original series in which Capt. James Kirk leads another Enterprise on a mission of exploration. The new show contains numerous foreshadowing references to "Voyager," "Next Generation" and "Deep Space Nine," as well as the various "Star Trek" movies.

Overall, the show is a guilty pleasure, but not nearly as good as the other "Star Trek" series. The ship also does not have holodecks, so we are spared any ridiculous make-believe scenarios, which is one advantage to "Enterprise."

However, this latest series, sadly, reverts back to much of the sexism and racism of the original series. All but three of the actors playing main characters are European or Euro-American men. The only two actors of color play characters of the lowest rank on the ship. Women often lustfully throw themselves at men or act completely irrational. There are also no LGBT characters (although one would expect that by the 22nd century homophobia and heterosexism would be gone), except for a character who is gender-neutral and appears in only one episode. Two of the characters are non-humans: a Vulcan and a Denobulan (a species whom this series introduces to viewers).
Star Trek: Enterprise
»
"Star Trek" fans will enjoy this series, which portrays the very first Star Fleet mission in the very first starship Enterprise. It is set about 200 years before the original series in which Capt. James Kirk leads another Enterprise on a mission of exploration.

The new show contains numerous foreshadowing references to "Voyager," "Next Generation" and "Deep Space Nine," as well as the various "Star Trek" movies, including LeVar Burton (who played LaForge) directing episodes.

Overall, the show is a guilty pleasure, but not nearly as good as the other "Star Trek" series.

However, this latest series, sadly, reverts back to much of the sexism and racism of the original series. All but three of the actors playing main characters are European or Euro-American men. The only two actors of color play characters of the lowest rank on the ship. Women often lustfully throw themselves at men or act completely irrational.

There are also no LGBT characters (although one would expect that by the 22nd century homophobia and heterosexism would be gone), except for a character who is gender-neutral and appears in only one episode.

Two of the characters are non-humans: a Vulcan and a Denobulan (a species whom this series introduces to viewers).