Saturday, 31 October 2015

Doctor Who: The Zygon Invasion (1)

Doctor: 'At ease. I'm the president of the world. I'm here to rescue people and generally establish happiness all over the place.'

It seems like only 357 days ago that I was bemoaning the loss of Osgood, in a scene so silly that you could have popped a red nose on it, draped it in a green wig, and called it Krusty. Let's face it: Osgood came to an uncharacteristically unintelligent end. Death by bananas! So I was overjoyed to hear that everyone's favourite Doctor fangirl would be returning. Pity they ruined the surprise by advertising it in virtually every press release from here to Timbuktu.

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Doctor Who: The Woman Who Lived (2)

Me: 'Yes, it is me. What took you so long, old man?'

A Clara-less interlude with Arya Stark as Ashildr, Ashildr as Me, Me as the dandy highwayman, Scar from the Lion King as the villain, and Rufus Hound as Sam Swift, the womanising wobber (sic). Do they not know that panto season is still 5 weeks away?

Saturday, 17 October 2015

Doctor Who: The Girl Who Died (1)

Doctor: 'No, no, not Vikings. I'm not in the mood for Vikings.'

This felt like the episode that 'Robot of Sherwood' should have been. It had the same vibe, with its medieval setting, its unrealistic village backdrop, its assortment of hats, and its humour quotient turned up several notches. Thankfully, it was lot less silly. The beards were less ridiculous, the dialogue wasn't as embarrassing, and the characterisation of both the Doctor and Clara was on point. After 'Mummy on the Orient Express' and 'Flatline', Jamie Mathieson is currently three for three.

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Doctor Who: Before the Flood (2)

Doctor: 'I'll come back for you, I swear.'

When a cold open starts with the Doctor breaking the fourth wall and delivering a causal loop monologue, and ends with him jamming to his own theme music, you just know you're in for a treat. After last week's more linear story, tonight's offering deviated from the template in just about every way imaginable. It moved location, introduced a new villain, separated the Doctor and Clara, turned up the timey-wimey to ten, yet the result was exactly the same—another top class outing from the man touted by many as Moffat's natural successor.

Sunday, 4 October 2015

Doctor Who: Under the Lake (1)

Doctor: 'My God, every time I think it couldn't get more extraordinary, it surprises me. It's impossible, I hate it, it's evil. It's astonishing, I want to kiss it to death.'

Despite doing some excellent work on Being Human, Toby Whithouse's success rate on Doctor Who has been patchier than the sixth Doctor's jacket. Although getting off to an incredible start with 'School Reunion', his later offerings ('The Vampires of Venice', 'A Town Called Mercy', etc.) utterly failed to set the Whoniverse alight. Yet tonight's episode was a thoroughly absorbing mix of base-under-siege goodness, ghostly goings-on, and nautical caperings, sat atop an unfolding narrative which although at times felt slower than we're used to, never felt boring.