The problem with season-spanning arcs in a television series is that the episodes that don’t add to the idea are a little lost. “Can You Hear Me?” is a perfectly fine episode. It’s not one of the best, not one of the worst. It reintroduces the Eternals, of which the Guardians and Celestial Toymaker are a part. All of the elements are there for “Doctor Who” fans, and yet the episode is mostly forgettable.
The Mental Health Of A Companion
Perhaps that is because the episode tries to tackle mental health issues with mixed results. At its worst, it leaves viewers wondering why the Doctor’s companions choose to travel with her. Ryan especially seems to be questioning the idea. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him exit at the end of the season. Yaz benefits the most from the plot. We’re shown her growth from bullying and self-confidence issues. It would seem there is something else going on now, but it isn’t touched on.
Can The Doctor Hear You?
The questionable moment of the episode is the interaction between the Doctor and Graham. His struggle with cancer fears and also the loss of his wife are his deepest fears. It makes sense that he might want to talk through that with the Doctor. Understanding that the Doctor is an alien, her reaction still seems off. Yes, she is awkward and doesn’t always know what to say. Still, she thinks of her companions as family. Her dismissal of Graham’s pain doesn’t feel right.
A Non-Threatening Threat
For an episode meant to show everyone’s deepest fears, no one comes across as particularly bothered by them. As such, the threat of Zellin and Rakaya is not all that alarming. The addition of the finger in the ear takes what is left and renders it comical. “Doctor Who” always straddles a line of being a children’s show that still needs to appeal to adults. “Can You Hear Me?” probably could have packed a few more thrills, though.
Can You Hear Me?
For a season that is promising big revelations, we haven’t had a lot to go on. You almost wonder if some of the discoveries will wait for another series. Hopefully, the next episode won’t be as forgettable as this. It would be nice to see some of the points make their return before the 2 part finale.