Doctor Who: Twice Upon A Time (S10E13) Review

*SPOILERS* Christmas is, famously, a time for indulgence and “Twice Upon A Time” finds demob happy showrunner Steven Moffat and his leading man in very indulgent mood indeed. Still refusing to regenerate following the events of “The Doctor Falls”, The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) finds himself at the South Pole, a very familiar South Pole as … Continue reading Doctor Who: Twice Upon A Time (S10E13) Review

What if The Doctor had always been a woman?

With all the fuss and noise over the announcement of Jodie Whittaker as the new Doctor Who, it got me thinking about how it would have been if The Doctor had always been a Time Lady. So, for my 700th Blog Post I thought it would be fun to fan cast the history of Doctor … Continue reading What if The Doctor had always been a woman?

My Daughter’s Doctor

We are mere minutes away from finding out who will become the sixteenth actor to portray Doctor Who in the Time Lord's fifteenth incarnation: The 13th Doctor is nigh (not Nighy, although that would be kind of awesome). I've always held to the theory that "your" Doctor isn't the one you first start watching, it's … Continue reading My Daughter’s Doctor

Doctor Who: The Doctor Falls (S10E12) Review

*SPOILERS* Oh, of course we don’t address the cliffhanger immediately. Instead, we’re treated to a healthy dose of bucolic nightmare fuel as would-be Cybermen scarecrows come to shambling life and attack an isolated farm homestead somewhere halfway up the ship. Admittedly, the annoyance of this discontinuity is ameliorated by the instantly iconic sight of a … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Doctor Falls (S10E12) Review

Doctor Who: World Enough And Time (S10E11) Review

*SPOILERS* Okay, we get it. The Twelfth Doctor’s time is coming to an end. DO we really need this many regeneration hints, though? Hang on, though. That snowy landscape looks oddly familiar…and oh, my Doctor…what long hair you have… “World Enough And Time” starts out with a cliff-hanger and doesn’t really let go from there. … Continue reading Doctor Who: World Enough And Time (S10E11) Review

Doctor Who: The Eaters Of Light (S10E10) Review

*SPOILERS* So…here we are, the calm before the storm; the deep breath before barrelling downhill towards the 12th Doctor’s finish line with only the two-part finale and a Christmas special to go. The last ‘ordinary’ episode of Capaldi’s era. And what better way to honour an era which has shown such reverence to the classic … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Eaters Of Light (S10E10) Review

Doctor Who: Empress Of Mars (S10E09) Review

After the promised-much-more-than-it-delivered epic storytelling of the past three weeks, “Doctor Who” comes back down to Earth (well, one planet out) with “Empress Of Mars”, landing firmly in the series’ comfort zone. Visiting NASA on a whim, the Doctor, Bill and Nardole are present to witness the discovery of a message written on the red … Continue reading Doctor Who: Empress Of Mars (S10E09) Review

Doctor Who: The Lie Of The Land (S10E08)

So... six months have elapsed since the end of the last episode and as the Doctor’s clumsily unconvincing hagiography of the Monks’ occupation eludes to they feel like they’ve been there forever. Well, we’ve all had guests like that, haven’t we? Britain is in the grip of a totalitarian regime, with any thought, word or … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Lie Of The Land (S10E08)

Doctor Who: The Pyramid At The End Of The World (S10E07) Review

If, after the thrilling bait-and-switch cliff-hanger of last week’s “Extremis”, you were looking forward the Monks Trilogy’s “Empire Strikes Back”, bad news: you’ve ended up getting “The Phantom Menace” instead. When a five-thousand-year-old pyramid appears overnight in a disputed area between American, Russian and Chinese forces, the Secretary-General of the United Nations invokes the protocol … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Pyramid At The End Of The World (S10E07) Review

Doctor Who: Extremis (S10E06) Review

*SPOILERS* After playing a blinder last week, what did “Doctor Who” have in store for us this time? Well, after the refreshingly straightforward run of episodes, it opened a can of vintage convoluted timey-wimey whoop-ass which has become the trademark of Moffat’s triumphs/ hallmark of his follies (delete as applicable). Opening with a flashback of … Continue reading Doctor Who: Extremis (S10E06) Review

Doctor Who: Oxygen (S10E05) Review

*SPOILERS* I’m always a little conflicted about voiceover narration in “Doctor Who” but it’s hard to complain here when it’s used to such cheeky effect, having Capaldi solemnly intone ‘Space: the final frontier…’. The Doctor’s feeling space sick, you see. Not in a nauseous way, but in a longing to sway amongst the stars once … Continue reading Doctor Who: Oxygen (S10E05) Review

Doctor Who: Knock Knock (S10E04) Review

*SPOILERS* The past looms large in “Knock Knock” as “Doctor Who” plunders horror tropes for an uneven but effective and emotional episode. When Bill and her friends are offered the rental property of their dreams, they sign up as quickly as they can. The Doctor’s happy to help her move in but once he sets … Continue reading Doctor Who: Knock Knock (S10E04) Review

Doctor Who: Smile (S10E02) Review

Our second outing of Season 10 opens in media res, or at least feels like it and I’ll admit I rewound the live TV just in case I’d blinked and missed a few vital seconds. I hadn't. After a brief and pointed reminder from Nardole regarding the Doctor’s ‘Oath’ to protect whatever’s in that vault, … Continue reading Doctor Who: Smile (S10E02) Review

Doctor Who: The Pilot (S10E01) Review

After an absence so long it almost qualifies for the sobriquet the Fourth Great Doctor Who Hiatus (especially if one understandably overlooks the forgettable “Return of Doctor Mysterio”), proper “Doctor Who” is back on telly for a tenth [thirty-sixth] season. So what does mischievous showrunner Steven Moffat call this overdue return? “The Pilot”, obviously. The … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Pilot (S10E01) Review

Doctor Who: The Return Of Doctor Mysterio (S10E00) Review

Much like children (and *ahem* some adults) across the country, “Doctor Who” reached into its festive stocking and pulled out a whole bunch of superhero toys. Although it’s a little bit shoehorned in during a leadenly expository cold open, once the superhero McGuffin is installed, showrunner Steven Moffat gleefully, almost giddily, goes to town smashing … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Return Of Doctor Mysterio (S10E00) Review

Doctor Who: The Husbands Of River Song (S9E13) Review

*SPOILERS* After the melodramatic melancholy of “Hell Bent”, there was only one direction “Doctor Who” could go for this year’s Christmas showstopper, especially with it coming so quickly after the series finale. “The Husbands Of River Song” playfully picks up with the Doctor’s old would-be paramour and takes him on one of her adventures, with … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Husbands Of River Song (S9E13) Review

Doctor Who: Hell Bent (S9E12) Review

*SPOILERS* I’ve taken the luxury of watching “Hell Bent” a few times now, savouring its courage and ambition. As a season finale it’s a curious beast, lacking the overt bombastic urgency of a universe-ending threat, instead underplaying the threat of a threat from the ill-defined ‘hybrid’ and allowing character driven action to take centre stage. … Continue reading Doctor Who: Hell Bent (S9E12) Review

Doctor Who: Heaven Sent (S9E11) Review

*SPOILERS* I wonder if there was a thematic echo of last week’s ‘Let me be brave’ motif as, a mere two weeks after the failed experiment of “Sleep No More”, Steven Moffat brings us another bold twist on the usual “Doctor Who” format? Materialising in a mysterious fortress, the Doctor finds himself stalked by an … Continue reading Doctor Who: Heaven Sent (S9E11) Review

Doctor Who: Face The Raven (S9E10) Review

*SPOILERS* Brushing off the experimental disappointment of last week, “Face The Raven” sees the superlative ninth season of “Doctor Who” soaring back to the top of its game on black and deadly wings. In a season which has already seen atmospheric homages to the eras of previous Doctors, “Face The Raven” tipped its hat to … Continue reading Doctor Who: Face The Raven (S9E10) Review

Doctor Who: Sleep No More (S9E09) Review

*SPOILERS* “Love And Monsters”, “Blink”, “Midnight”, “Turn Left”…“Doctor Who” has often been happy to experiment with its storytelling format (but thankfully only dabbled once in fellatiory paving stone humour). “Sleep No More” pushes the boundaries further than ever before, and in doing so reminds us why those boundaries existed in the first place. The episode … Continue reading Doctor Who: Sleep No More (S9E09) Review

Doctor Who: The Zygon Inversion (S9E08) Review

*SPOILERS* Oh me of little faith. After lambasting the overstuffed and eventless “The Zygon Invasion” last week, my expectations for this week were rock bottom. Even with such an easy hurdle to clear, “The Zygon Inversion” soared way, way above my expectations and fully restored my faith in series 9. Opening, as is now par … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Zygon Inversion (S9E08) Review

Doctor Who: The Zygon Invasion (S9E07) Review

*SPOILERS* For me, this is the first time this series that a first episode of a two-parter hasn’t set the bar particularly high for the conclusion to come. In fact, I really hope this turns the whole convention on its head and next week’s “The Zygon Inversion” retrospectively manages to salvage something from this dull, … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Zygon Invasion (S9E07) Review

Doctor Who: The Woman Who Lived (S9E06) Review

*SPOILERS* “The Woman Who Lived” is much more of a philosophical piece than its immediate predecessor but the richness of the metaphysical musings can’t cover for the paucity of the rest of the episode. It starts promisingly enough. On my first watch, I missed the throwaway comment about her ‘teaching the year 7s judo’ but it was … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Woman Who Lived (S9E06) Review

Doctor Who: The Girl Who Died (S9E05) Review

*SPOILERS* Not a fan of the sonic shades? Then today’s your lucky day, as they’re quickly disposed of by an irate Viking (The post credits ‘Next Time’ sequence hints they'll be back though). And all of this happens after the Doctor has already defeated four and a bit battle fleets and saved Clara from asphyxiation … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Girl Who Died (S9E05) Review

Doctor Who: Before The Flood (S9E04) Review

*SPOILERS* Usually, the habit of not immediately addressing the previous episode’s cliff hanger at the start of the episode bugs me but this time out, with Capaldi’s Doctor back in “Listen”-style lecture-the-audience mode is just so good it didn’t bother me. I’m really starting to like the 12th Doctor’s fondness for the electric guitar (it’s … Continue reading Doctor Who: Before The Flood (S9E04) Review

Doctor Who: Under The Lake (S9E03) Review

*SPOILERS* Well, that was a deliciously retro treat, wasn’t it? Since “Doctor Who” returned in 2005, I don’t think there’s been an episode which evoked the original series in quite so pure a form as “Under The Lake”. The classic atmosphere was so strong that when the first caption set the adventure in Caithness and … Continue reading Doctor Who: Under The Lake (S9E03) Review

Doctor Who: The Witch’s Familiar (S9E02) Review

*SPOILERS* It was only to be expected, after last week’s bravura opener that the follow up would struggle to maintain the same level of energy and invention. Standards do slip in “The Witch’s Familiar”, but not by much and the deceptively small cast make the most of the meaty moral dilemma Steven Moffat has cooked … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Witch’s Familiar (S9E02) Review

Doctor Who: The Magician’s Apprentice (S9E01) Review

*SPOILERS* So…he’s back – and he’s not hiding from his enemies. If anything, he’s doing the exact opposite and trying to provoke them: cavorting around the universe like his own private playground, having a blast and taking on his fiercest foes with a brash confidence and an almost complete absence of f**ks to give. I … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Magician’s Apprentice (S9E01) Review

Doctor Who: Last Christmas (S8E13) Review

*SPOILERS* A festive special which is unlikely to reconvert any of those who checked out during the last season, “Last Christmas” still offered us a rich and fruity plum pudding of entertainment, perfect for a Christmas Day tea time. There wasn’t, to be honest, a lot of originality in this year’s Christmas special but at … Continue reading Doctor Who: Last Christmas (S8E13) Review

Doctor Who: Death In Heaven (S8E12) Review

*SPOILERS* As the brief cold open crashed into the opening credits, my heart was warmed by the thought of hundreds of bitter, angry Whovians, who were only hate watching the episode to stoke their rage about Missy’s reveal last week, doing a hilarious spit take at Clara’s declaration that she, in fact, had been the … Continue reading Doctor Who: Death In Heaven (S8E12) Review

Doctor Who: Dark Water (S8E11) Review

*SPOILERS* I’m going to keep this as brief as I can, because it’s tricky to judge a ‘part one’ in isolation without having seen the second episode. As it was, we got a couple of answers to two questions which have run the length of the series (one we were actualy interested in and the … Continue reading Doctor Who: Dark Water (S8E11) Review

Doctor Who: In The Forest Of The Night (S8E10) Review

*SPOILERS* Well, it had to end at some time. After soaring so high recently, “In The Forest Of The Night” brings us crashing down to Earth with a bump, featuring some of the sloppiest writing and worst performances since the early days of Russell T Davies. When a global forest springs up overnight, covering the whole … Continue reading Doctor Who: In The Forest Of The Night (S8E10) Review

Doctor Who: Flatline (S8E09) Review

*SPOILERS* After a solid run of three really good episodes, I was ready for a bit of slide this week, especially when I read the synopsis saying that with the Doctor out of action, Clara has to become the Doctor. After all the complaining I've done about the series being too Clara-centric, how was I … Continue reading Doctor Who: Flatline (S8E09) Review

Doctor Who: Mummy On The Orient Express (S8E08) Review

*SPOILERS* This series of "Who" really seems to be hitting its stride, so the choice of song for Foxes’ smoky jazz cover couldn’t have been more appropriate. “Don’t Stop Me Now” indeed. Because we are having a good time. Capaldi is absolutely rocking the character of the Doctor now and the setting is quirkily off … Continue reading Doctor Who: Mummy On The Orient Express (S8E08) Review

Doctor Who: Kill The Moon (S8E07) Review

*SPOILERS* After last week’s episode seemed to finally get the components to click together, I had high hopes for this week’s episode, particularly after an “Alien”-inspired trailer. And you know what? By and large, I wasn’t disappointed. This was the easiest episode this season to enjoy, with my only major gripe being the facile “oh, … Continue reading Doctor Who: Kill The Moon (S8E07) Review

Doctor Who News: RIP Maggie Stables

Not movie related, but I've literally just learned of the sad passing of Maggie Stables on Monday 29th September, who played Dr Evelyn Smythe - one of the best companions the Doctor ever had. If you haven't heard of her, it may be because she wasn't a companion in the TV series but instead appeared … Continue reading Doctor Who News: RIP Maggie Stables

Doctor Who: The Caretaker (S806) Review

*SPOILERS* Okay – this, I think, is the one where I’m going to say Season 8 of “Doctor Who” has clicked, and all the pieces have snapped together in a pleasingly familiar and yet genuinely fresh and different configuration. For the first time, for a whole episode, Capaldi’s Doctor felt like the Doctor. Yes, he’s … Continue reading Doctor Who: The Caretaker (S806) Review

Doctor Who: Time Heist (S805) Review

*SPOILERS* There’s a commonly held belief that Doctor Who stories which contain the word ‘Time’ are generally disappointing. There’s certainly plenty of evidence: “The Time Monster”, “Time Flight”, “Time And The Rani”, “The End Of Time” but “The Time Of The Doctor” was pretty good so maybe… When the Doctor and Clara find themselves teamed … Continue reading Doctor Who: Time Heist (S805) Review

Doctor Who: Listen (S8E04) Review

*SPOILERS* I'm starting to quite enjoy this new series of “The Adventures Of Clara Oswald”. They've done a really good job of replacing her time travelling sidekick without allowing him to hog too much of the limelight and take the focus of the series off our heroine. In this episode, the Doctor comes up with … Continue reading Doctor Who: Listen (S8E04) Review

Doctor Who: Robot Of Sherwood (S8E03) Review

Refreshingly standalone (although there was still an oblique reference to ‘The Promised Land’ and therefore the enigmatic Missy), “Robot Of Sherwood” is the first universal Doctor Who story of the Capaldi era. By universal, I mean it could have successfully featured any Doctor. The 11th would have loved meeting Robin Hood and all the sceptical … Continue reading Doctor Who: Robot Of Sherwood (S8E03) Review

Doctor Who: Into The Dalek (S8E02) Review

Oh look – they’ve done a remake of “Dalek” from series one.With the post-regeneration shenanigans of last week behind us, this was our first chance to see the new Doctor in business-as-usual mode. Unfortunately, what we got was a lot of set-up for the series (re-introducing Coal Hill School, introducing Danny Pink, a curious reappearance from … Continue reading Doctor Who: Into The Dalek (S8E02) Review

Doctor Who: Deep Breath (S8E01) Review

*SPOILERS*Post-regeneration stories are always a bit of a mixed bag. There's a lot of heavy lifting to do: setting up the new Doctor, giving the general tone of the new era (although this usually only kicks in by the second or third adventure) and they need to restate the basic premise of the series to … Continue reading Doctor Who: Deep Breath (S8E01) Review

The Regeneration Game (1966-2010)

I’ve been a fan of “Doctor Who” since I can remember, and certainly way, way back before it was cool to like Doctor Who. I followed it from its Saturday teatime slot, through experimental Monday Tuesday scheduling and suicidal Wednesday showdowns with soap operas to cancellation. Through the wilderness years I waited, had my hopes … Continue reading The Regeneration Game (1966-2010)