Why do I love series five so much despite two utterly awful stories? Because even the simple comedy installments are just huggably wonderful. Gareth Roberts wrote “The Lodger” after I guess you’d say piloting the idea in a terrific comic strip for Doctor Who Magazine three years earlier. That time, the Tenth Doctor moves in with Micky for a few days and makes him miserable. This time, he takes an extra room with a fellow named Craig. Craig and Sophie are too shy to move from awkward friendship into dating, so Craig’s pretty miserable anyway, but somehow the Doctor’s attempts to act like a normal “bloke” just to end up being practically perfect in every way threaten to ruin everything. It is hilarious. James Corden and Daisy Haggard are too cute for words and the show is full of moments that are sweet or knowing or completely surprising.
The kid loved it, but he ended up loving what came next even more. Afterward, I told him how Matt Smith came to the US to do some promotional business for The Crown two years ago and starred with James Corden and Terry Crews in a great comedy bit for The Late Late Show called “Lizzie and the Duke”. Usually it’s Who that gets the kid coming up with fan theories, but three minutes of that and he was speculating whether our heroes could blow up the Tower of London as well as the Los Angeles Federal Building, and how it would happen. Clearly CBS missed a trick not ordering a full season.