Firstly: I liked it muchly. I don't think as much as the first part, because the build up is always creepier than the pay-off, and I am a fan of creepy and atmosphere when it comes to this sort of thing. That said, this two parter still rates very, very highly for me.
And it made you think a bit, had some great moments, had some moving moments, had a distinct lack of things that annoyed me, though it wasn't perfect.
However, the annoyance factor has shown up for a few people on my flist, and like with Girl in the Fireplace - but from different people - it's about an interpretation that completely bewilders me.
It's about that bit near the end, when the Doctor sets the Beast free, and in doing so dooms it. For some reason, because of the line the Doctor comes up with here - the "I believe in her!" one, some people seem to be perceiving this as the Doctor putting Rose ahead of the Universe.
And I haven't the faintest idea how they are coming to this conclusion.
Yeah, it wasn't the best line. But if the Tenth Doctor is anything, it's talk. He babbles and speechifies and goes on, and half the time he is talking utter rubbish. It's just what he does. But look at the actions here. He saves teh universe from the Beast. And yet he has no idea how he can escape, if the others are safe, if Rose is safe. And yet he still does it. Because it is the right thing to do.
I mean, even earlier, he said it himself (I won't quote anymore, because I can't remember the exact dialogue). The temptation here, the judgement is if he is willing to destroy the Beast, even if it means taking away Rose's chance of escape. Would you let evil live on, if it would save someone you love (platonically or otherwise)?
And unlike last season, he doesn't let someone else choose for him. He doesn't cringe back from it. He makes the choice, he chooses to let the prison fall, Rose's safety fall. And it is now he says he believes in her.
And why not? It wouldn't be the first time she's pulled off the impossible. Yeah, Rose annoys me. Yeah, she comes off as other a bit useless, or a Sue in a lot of situations. But she got into the TARDIS, adn destroyed the Daleks. She survived being shut in with a Dalek. She does stupid-but-brave things quite often, and the Doctor has faith she might pull it off now.
That's what it comes down to: He doesn't hesitate here. He knows what must be done, and does it. He saves the Universe despite the fact it could kill Rose. And he believes that she will survive, somehow. It's a mixture of his optimistic nature, his faith in humanity, and what he's seen from Rose.
And at no point do I ever see him deciding to put Rose ahead of the Universe. Hell, if it wasn't for the fact that he miraculously came across the TARDIS, they'd all be dead. Including Rose. But the Universe would be saved. He would have saved the Universe at the cost of Rose's life. And he never showed the faintest hint of regret for it.
It's pretty obvious that what's going on here is Universe > Rose (but can Rose live, pretty please?)
Yeah, it wasn't a good line to get the point across. But I can see him saying the same thing for pretty much any of his companions. Unlike a lot of the show, this isn't a blatantly shippy line - you can read your own interpretations into it. Which sort of muddied up the situation, from what I hear about the Considential.
But it's actions, not words, that count here. And the Doctor did here, as Ten, what Nine never did, to make the choice to put the greater good ahead of Rose's safety without outside prompting. It was all him there. Choosing of his own free will. And in the end, it was only sheer luck (or, according to some people, deus ex machina) that he found the TARDIS that he saved Rose.
Yes, that's right, the Doctor's actions saved the Universe and would have killed Rose if he hadn't gotten so incredibly lucky.
So, quite frankly, to the people on my flist who think the Doctor was putting Rose ahead of the Universe in this episode, I haven't the faintest clue where you are getting your ideas.
And something to keep in mind: character hate can distort perceptions just as much as character love.