Eugene Debs was given a 10-year sentence and served hard time for giving a speech, snowflake. https://t.co/jDL7s6XkLo— Kevin Murphy (@kcm74) May 18, 2017
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SUTCLIFFE: Girl, you show the ignorance of all your kind. Without that beast, my mills would rely on coal mines, and men die in coal mines all the time.Such fisticuffs and moralizing, it's feeling very Pertwee Era up in here. (As Sandifer notes, the first death, a drunk who wanders away from the crowd, is also reminiscent of the Pertwee era where local color fatalities were often used to establish the menace in the early going.) There's one other way this episode put me in the mind of tail end of Pertwee's run ... it has to do with the companion.
DOCTOR: I preferred it when you were alien.
SUTCLIFFE: When I was?
DOCTOR: Well, that explained the lack of humanity. What makes you so sure that your life is worth more than those people out there on the ice? Is it the money? The accident of birth that puts you inside the big, fancy house?
SUTCLIFFE: I help move this country forward. I move this Empire forward.
DOCTOR: Human progress isn't measured by industry, it's measured by the value you place on a life. An unimportant life. A life without privilege. The boy who died on the river, that boy's value is your value. That's what defines an age. That's what defines a species.
SUTCLIFFE: What a beautiful speech. The rhythm and, and vocabulary, quite outstanding. It's enough to move anyone with an ounce of compassion. So, it's really not your day, is it?
There is of course a thin line between this and just saying I like the episode because of its politics. And to be fair, I do like the episode because of its politics. I mean, the Doctor literally sucker punches a racist. Of course I like it. Shit, I suspect even Jack is going to turn out to like it. Yes, most of its overtly political statements are very right-on and generic ones that are easily traced to common social justice rhetoric on Twitter. But Smile’s politics were just as generic. The difference, and the reason this works as opposed to just being a confused mess, isn’t just that the politics are good, it’s that they’re coherent. This is a story where all the ideas are actually pointing the same way. The story is about exploitation, and so Bill talks about slavery, points out the erasure of black people from history, and confronts a racist shitlord. Where Smile spent most of its time having no idea what it wanted to be, taking up and discarding ideas willy nilly, Thin Ice knows exactly what it wants to do.AV Club review (A grade)
After a pair of introductory episodes that established a promising new TARDIS team amid only so-so adventures, the Doctor and Bill finally get a story and a script worthy of them with Sarah Dollard’s brilliant “Thin Ice.” There’s much to celebrate about this episode, but more than anything else is just how much watching it made me smile. Peter Capaldi and Pearl Mackie are a brilliant comedic double act, with the Doctor especially getting a ton of great lines. Their early exchange about the temporally deleted companion Pete has fun with what could otherwise be standard companion questions about the perils of time travel.TV Tropes recap