Some thoughts in no particular order about the latest episode of Doctor Who, and season 10 in general. Contains spoilers.
Seriously, spoilers. It’s not really possible to write about what’s happened in this episode or this season without them. Just in case you clicked on a link you didn’t mean to, here’s Jon Pertwee doing what could almost charitably be called “singing”. Scroll further, and spoilers may happen.
All set, then? Been a while since I’ve mused on Who.
Like I said, these are random thoughts in no particular order, but I’m presuming you’ve watched all the episodes up to episode 11 of season 10 of Doctor Who
- It’s cold outside, there’s no kind of atmosphere… I can’t have been the only person humming the Red Dwarf theme when we got our first fly-by view of the ship, can I?
- Sometimes it’s best to wait for Christmas: John Simm is, as always, exceptional onscreen, and, so far, he’s avoiding the worst of the very-hammy-forced-facial-ticks he had in his last appearance. Still, I can’t help but think that the impact of his reveal would have been much more had he not been pre-announced. As such, I spent the entire episode waiting for him to appear, and when he did, it was rather more telegraphed than it otherwise would have been. Compared, to, say, the rather more secret reveal of the Master at the end of Utopia, it was a slightly deflated moment.
- You can’t beat the originals: Mondasian Cybermen are infinitely more cool (and scary) than the Earth-2 variants. Then again, they always were. Somewhat surprising to realise (terrible throwback joke to “Genesis of…” notwithstanding that the series hasn’t bothered to tell this story beyond The Tenth Planet before.
- There’s never enough time: I love the idea of playing around with time zones within a given ship, but frankly, why this wasn’t given two episodes by itself baffles me. Strong idea, so many ways you could realise it and still lead into what we got this week.
- Stay the cyber-course: I don’t know what next week’s season finale will bring, but if I’m honest, I somewhat hope that Bill stays a Cyberman. Not that I hate the character per se, but it would give a rather more solid level of permanence to the danger that’s meant to be inherent with travelling with the Doctor. Plus, you could get me to squeal in the worst way if they worked out a way to show footage of Bill-Cyberman meeting Hartnell. Just a thought…
- Season 10 is redeeming itself: Most folks seem to like season 10, and I do too, but it has been terribly uneven. The monks didn’t need (or justify) 3 stories, and while most folks liked Smile, I found it terribly ordinary. This finale, though, looks like it’s reaching for greatness. I guess we’ll find out next week.
- I could do without the endless regeneration teases: Yes, we know Capaldi’s leaving, but not when or who’s replacing him. But endless glowy teases don’t built anticipation, just annoyance. Unless, that is, that the reveal is that John Simm is the new Doctor. Now that’s a twist I could get behind.