Doctor Who The Pyramid at the End of the World Review

…Or that was a bit disappointing after last week’s strange confection. I loved Peter Harness’ series 9 Zygon two parter and loathed his abortion metaphor in Kill The Moon (not to mention the waste of a particularly strong guest star in Hermione Norris). A writer known for his political undertones, this episode is no different (Russia, the USA and China put aside their differences to face an alien threat together), but it suffers from being the middle episode in a three parter.

Back in real time, Bill is telling her would be girlfriend, Penny, about the mad cap adventures of her and The Doctor in last week’s Extremis. Last week she was interrupted by The Pope and this time, in what appears to be a running gag, she is interrupted by the UN’s head. Why? A mysterious pyramid has set itself up at the locus of contested earth territory. It’s up to The Doctor and his companion to find out the reason for its sudden appearance…

The Guest Stars

This series hasn’t been as strong on guest stars as others have been in my opinion (series 8 takes the cake for the longest list of companions who never were). However, I quite enjoyed the scientist plot. I liked that the female scientist was the smart one, the one who could follow The Doctor and keep up with his thought leaps, the one who doesn’t die, who doesn’t do something stupid. Erica (played by a quietly brilliant Rachel Denning) is compassionate, intelligent and values life.

The fact that The Doctor doesn’t trust her enough to tell her about his blindness is telling. The last few years have seen some interesting episodes which feature actors with disability. Last year’s two parter Under the Lake/Before the Flood is the first time I’ve seen a prime time drama feature signing by a hearing impaired actor. This time round, it was nice that the story didn’t comment on Erica’s height. I hope Erica is back in the next episode and makes it to the other side alive.

The Companion and The Doctor

The monks have some truly creepy glowing strands in their pyramid which show strands of humanity’s future. They claim that humanity will surrender to them voluntarily when they see the emptiness of this future. They even put the pressure on with a countdown. The Doctor foolishly runs off to try and figure out the source of earth’s empty future and tells Bill not to cave in to the monk’s ongoing demands for a human with authority.

The Doctor: You could take this planet in a heartbeat. Why do you need consent?
Monk: We must be wanted. We must be loved. To rule through fear is inefficient.
The Doctor: Of course… fear is temporary, love is… slavery.

This concept is of course interesting, but hardly developed in a 45 minute run time. I didn’t really buy The Doctor leaving Bill to resist the monks, especially after the soldier representatives of three nations are disintegrated because they speak out of fear and obligation, not out of love.

However, the last ten minutes of this episode are five out of five star brilliant. The Doctor hasn’t admitted to anyone but Nardole that he is blind and so he is his own worst enemy. He cannot see the keypad to unlock the deadlock despite Erica giving the codes to him over and over. And Bill sees this and thinks he is going to die, so out of love for The Doctor, she gives up earth to the monks.

Bill: You can have the world, just let him see again!

Shit Bill. This is definitely not good news. Next week looks set to be a rollercoaster with the return of Missy added to the mix. Why does this feel so much like a finale just over midway through a series run?

Great Quote

Another Capaldi monologue:

The Doctor: The end of your life is already begun. There is a last place you will ever go, a last door you will ever walk through, a last sight you will ever see. And every step you ever take is moving you closer. The end of the world is a billion, billion tiny moments. And somewhere, unnoticed, in silence or in darkness, it has already begun.

The Pyramid at the End of the World: 7/10 inky stars for a muddled episode with a brilliant ending

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Doctor Who Extremis Review

Ah this episode was more like the old school Santa Moff penned script I know and love. That’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy The Pilot. I did, but I have always enjoyed the way Moffat does outlandish experimentation in directions you never expect on Doctor Who, and this is what happens again with Extremis.

Like the openers to series 6 and 9, this mid series episode felt like part one of a finale two parter. Aside from some jokes at the Catholic Church’s expense via Bill and her prospective girlfriend, Penny’s shock at the TARDIS materializing and bringing The Pope to say hi, the whole episode feels dark, foreboding and like the stakes are getting ramped up in a big way.

Missy and The Doctor

The episode opens sometime after The Husbands of River Song and the singing towers and The Doctor finding Bill we presume. We aren’t given a lot of background on why Missy is about to be executed (is it something to do with her escape with the daleks at the start of series 9? Will this story strand come up again in the s10 finale?), but the way Moffat weaves how The Doctor came to be minding the box at university actually works quite well alongside the second story strand of the episode, which is basically The Name of the Rose meets The Matrix alien invasion story.

I have always found the relationship between The Master and The Doctor to be interesting. They are both Time Lord renegades, and therefore, in some sense bound by mutual understanding of what it is to be alone, to be an outcast from kin. They are both brilliant geniuses, even if they choose to use that genius to different ends. They both play games with each other, to test that intellect, and to make sure both can still play the game.

Though Missy was understated in this episode, Michelle Gomez is as brilliant as ever, and I am heartbroken that she is set to leave alongside Capaldi. Though I still enjoyed Simm Master, he has nothing on the cold, intelligent, brutal mania of Missy. I couldn’t quite tell, as Missy knelt before her executioner, if she meant every word she said or she was just trying to save her own skin.

I have also often said in these recap reviews that Moffat has a way of verbalising via his scripts key qualities of The Doctor, the qualities which make him loved, respected and famed throughout the galaxy. This time Moff does this via Nardole, River Song and her blue TARDIS diary. If The Doctor killed Missy in cold blood, he would no longer be The Doctor (the name you choose. It’s like a promise you keep). He would take responsibility for her, he would watch over her for a thousand years because she is a Time Lord following horribly wrong paths, but he cannot kill her without destroying the part of himself that people love most. River’s diary quote felt like something out of a philosophy text rather than a TV episode, and it is no less beautiful for that.

River: Only in darkness are we revealed. […] Goodness is not goodness that seeks advantage. Good is good in the final hour, in the deepest pit, without hope, without witness, without reward. Virtue is only virtue in extremis.

In the most extreme of circumstances, The Doctor saves The Master in the hopes that someday she will make good on her word and pay The Doctor’s kindness back. By episode’s end, The Doctor must ask one of his oldest enemies for help. The question is, at what price does Missy’s aide come? Does she truly understand the meaning of calling someone friend? Her words as her doom sat high seem to indicate so:

Missy: Without hope. Without witness. Without reward. I am your friend.

The Companions

I am still loving Bill, and this episode continued with building on her relationship with Nardole, which I am a fan of. I love that Nardole can be a ‘badass’ and then two seconds later reveal himself to be a real coward. He is a companion that grows on me more with each passing episode.

I am also enjoying the run of stories in series 10 which see The Doctor and his companions relying less on the sonic and magic Time Lord get out of jail free cards, and more focus on companions and The Doctor resorting to intellect to get out of sticky situations. This episode then is a mixed bag on this front; most of the episode is spent with characters figuring things out, yet The Doctor’s ability to email from the simulation to himself in the real world made no sense.

Extremis: 9/10 inky stars for being a chilling, yet oddly beautiful in parts episode, with some fine performances from everyone, but especially from Capaldi. His gravity when he explains to Bill that they are simulations is grave and sad.

PS: Will The Doctor’s attempt to read The Veritus affect his next regeneration? What price did Twelve pay for the brief use of his vision returned?

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Doctor Who Oxygen Review

YES. Jamie Mathieson episode time. I love this guy writing for Who. What a true find he was. Both Flatline and Mummy on the Orient Express are great episodes in my book and The Girl Who Lived wasn’t half bad either. My money is on him having what it takes to be a show runner one fine day.

Anyway, Oxygen is about The Doctor and Bill doing space adventure. For the first time this series, Nardole comes along for the ride and gets some story beats in his own right. Oxygen is a commodity and suits are the three’s only hope of breathing for sustained periods. Then the suits turn on their human residents…

What I loved about this episode (which was yet another example of Doctor Who in confined space with guest stars getting murdered one by one), was the way it took the time to breathe, the way it let us fear for Bill and then The Doctor and then rage with all three main characters about the way capitalism has screwed us all over.

The Companions

I am still loving Bill. She is fast sky rocketing to one of the better companions in the show’s entire run. I loved her comment that inside the space station she couldn’t tell she was in space, but then she turned to a window and looked out, and the audience, like her, felt the wonder and emptiness of space. “That’s more like it.”

Of course, it’s Bill’s suit which malfunctions and we get to see Mackie’s acting chops on show as she does genuine shit your pants terror. I love that The Doctor gives his helmet to Bill and risks his own life. Even though Twelve is grouchy and sometimes coldly scientific (as his voice over at the start of the episode reminds us), when his companion is in trouble,he risks everything for their safety. Bill and The Doctor have a lovely relationship and I can’t wait to see where it all goes next.

This week as well, Nardole moves beyond mere valet and starts helping The Doctor on an adventure in his own right. I was never a huge fan of Matt Lucas, but this episode he grew on me with his combination of light comedy turn, cowardice and gentle put downs of The Doctor when needed. We also see that he values individual life. It is obvious that he cares for Bill’s safety because she is The Doctor’s friend. What else should the audience expect from an ex colleague of River Song?

The Doctor

Aside from protecting his companions and raging against capitalism (and with good reason in this story), there is another drop the mic Doctor Who moment which I for one did not see coming. The Doctor walks into a vacuum defenseless and seems fine. But this is not the case. His sunglasses shield the truth. That he has been blinded by his choice to spare Bill. I really hope that this story consequence isn’t hand waved away next episode. One of the great things about Capaldi’s Doctor (and I say this as someone who sees Eleven as her Doctor)is that he is a more back to basics kind of guy: less reliance on the sonic and on timey wimey stuff. More reliance on science, rationality and intellect. Series 10 has been a vehicle for great stories which underplay both of the former. Having a blind Doctor only adds to the difficulty of penning a story, but it makes for very interesting Doctor territory.

Other stuff

Guest stars this week were a mixed bag. The opening woman who is killed in the first five minutes gave a surprising memorable bit part performance. I was genuinely moved by her every time she was on screen. I loved the blue guy and his exchange with Bill on racism. I love that we can now depict racism and discuss racism on Doctor Who and it’s great that stories haven’t ignored Bill’s identity as a black woman. The female leader who distrusts The Doctor? I liked her for the most part (it doesn’t do to have everyone worship the ground The Doctor walks on all of the time) but I didn’t buy her sudden acceptance of The Doctor’s explanations for the oxygen, the suits, and the incoming new human cargo. A small niggle in an otherwise five star episode.

Memorable Quotes

The Doctor: They’re not your rescuers. They’re your replacements. The endpoint of capitalism. Bottom line. Where human life has no value at all. We’re fighting an algorithm. A spreadsheet. Like every worker everywhere, we’re fighting the suits!

The Doctor: The universe shows its true face when it asks for help, we show ours by how we respond.

Oxygen: 9/10 inky stars with another quality Mathieson entry

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Doctor Who Knock Knock Review

I got up early today to get this review done and tonight will be the double bunger on Oxygen followed by Extremis (which I need to re-watch because the episode was so dense, if brilliant). I have to admit I was a wee bit excited for this one. I’ve never heard of Mike Bartlett before, and as far as I know he’s never previously written for New Who, but I was damn keen to see David Suchet in something again. His turn as Poirot was pitch perfect.

So what was Knock Knock all about? Bill is at home on earth while The Doctor finally takes Nardole’s advice and minds the box. She and a bunch of uni friends are moving out and where do they pick? A dilapidated nightmare out of a haunted house film, but hey, the rent is cheap, though the land lord is a creep. Side note: this whole series seems to have a running thread through it about neo-liberalism and its harmful, soul sucking effects. Last week the episode of the week was about a villain who put money over children. This week we have a land lord who seems to genuinely want to give some young people a cheap, convenient deal, but there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Rent is expensive and a decent house ever more unattainable in UK, as in Australia, so desperate people take shitty options because what else can they do? Anyway, the house starts coming alive, people get offed one by one, The Doctor shows up (which means trouble), and the damn land lord is still hanging around like a bad smell. Why?

The Companions

Nardole is scarcely in this story. Nothing to see here. Move along. Knock Knock is, however, Bill’s story even more so than it is The Doctor’s. We learn a bit about the hodge podge of friends she has decided to keep (and yay BBC for ethnic diversity) and deals well with idiot boys with crushes on her. She is curious and intelligent, but most of all just enormously fun to be around.

Having Peter Capaldi play Twelve makes for a more interesting companion/Doctor dynamic too, with Bill’s way of interacting with The Doctor reflecting Susan in some ways. The Doctor even refers to Bill as his granddaughter when he comes to the house and won’t leave. Bill is rightfully terrified throughout this adventure, and horrified by the death she sees, but she still sticks with The Doctor to sate her curiosity. I loved The Ponds as a family unit group of companions, but Bill may well become one of my favourite companions if she keeps this up.

The guest star

There isn’t all that much to say about The Doctor in this episode, at least until the episode’s denouement. There is plenty to say about the guest stars this week, both of whom were superb.

David Suchet chooses to play his mannered, old fashioned part in a very understated way and this works perfectly. In Suchet’s hands, the land lord is both creepy, cruel and tragic. The ending of this story is perfect. I didn’t see it coming, even when we first met Eliza. Once we know everything the land lord does with his flesh eating alien lice is in the name of preserving his mother, the story shifts into another gear. Suchet had flashes of sadness under the menace, even from the episode’s opening, and flashes of anger masking his ultimate selfishness too. I didn’t want to, but I did sympathize with his desire to keep his Mum alive, whatever the terrible cost.

Eliza, played by actress Mariah Gale, is also a tragic figure. Made of wood and living a half life, Mariah sold to us in a relatively short time period, her emptiness and pain and then, finally, the suffering at the terrible decision she had to make to protect others. Eliza kills her son and commits suicide, yet rather than feel vindicated that the villain of the week and his aliens are conquered, I just felt terribly sad for the waste of the land lord’s life in a false dream.

I thought series 9 was the best series since 5, but 10 could also be another blinder.

Memorable quotes:

The Doctor: What’s the point of surviving if you never see anyone, if you hide yourself away from the world?! When did you last open the shutters?

The land lord: Hope is its own form of cruelty.

Knock Knock: 8/10 inky stars for another quiet breathing episode which nonetheless packed emotional punch.

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Doctor Who Thin Ice Review

Wow. That was something. Plain, good old fashioned Who fun penned by Sarah Dollard who wrote Face The Raven last season (which was pretty damn good in its own right). I’m also a sucker for Regency era settings, Dickensian working and living conditions and The Doctor preaching humanism to the villain of the week.

What happens?

Bill and The Doctor travel to the past and discover an unusually cold London winter, a fun fair on the ice, and something odd beneath the water. But is the thing beneath the ice really evil or is the truth far more sinister? What I love about stories like this is that there is space to breathe. Character moments have air time because the alien plot isn’t complex and grandiose. Instead, this story reminded me in terms of set-up of a cross between The Beast Below where the alien of the week wasn’t the big bad at all and was instead a creature who needed freedom to be happy and The Snowman where yes, there were aliens in the story, but they couldn’t have gotten where they did without human fallibility getting thrown into the mix.

thin ice

The Doctor and his companion

Peter Capaldi got more to do this week. I enjoyed his quips to Bill about the TARDIS. Namely:

The Doctor: I told you, you don’t steer the TARDIS, you reason with it.
Bill: How?
The Doctor: Unsuccessfully, most of the time.

I also liked that we saw Bill’s horror at the small thief’s demise and The Doctor’s seemingly callous disregard for his life in favour of saving his sonic screw driver. This Doctor appears to be very focused on reason over heart, but deep down he is still The Doctor and different to the rest of his race because he does feel passion and emotion just as much as he does reason and logic. The Doctor ticks Bill off for stamping her foot instead of doing something about the problem posed to them and he is vehement to Bill when he says that passion fights but reason wins the day. Twelve claims he puts logic and reason over feeling and emotion, but he’s a liar. It’s a front to allow a brave face on the world until something happens… and he snaps. He sees (figuratively) children crying (Moffat really found an essential aspect of all incarnations of The Doctor with Amy’s quote) and has to read them a story, and then get even and get angry, get passionate, to make things better.

You need a bit of reason and logic and a bit of feeling and emotion to succeed at anything in reality. And by the episode’s denouement,this is what has happened, passion and reason in balanced mix. Why else would The Doctor tell the human devil of the story why he has fallen short morally of a brave new world.

The Doctor: I preferred it when you were alien.

Sutcliffe: When I was…

The Doctor: Well, that would explain the lack of humanity. What makes you so sure 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.

The 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.

God The Doctor must hate austerity measures and the Tories (why has no one made that episode?) But on a more serious note, The Doctor might claim to Bill that he has never had the luxury of outrage, but like Ros Huntley in Line of Duty, it’s a case of ‘watch what I do, don’t listen to what I say.’ The Doctor does get outraged. He gets outraged when the little people are subjugated, exploited, damaged. He gets outraged when people are treated like things. He flies in the face of everything that neoliberalism stands for with its hard line every man for themself, clink of dollar signs the most alluring sound in the world approach. If he ever stops getting outraged and begins to accept these things, accepts that individuals (alien or otherwise) cease to matter in favour of some imagined greater good… well… that is the end of The Doctor. The name you choose, it’s like a promise you keep. The Doctor has made a choice to draw a line in the sand with his name a reminder to never break that promise. Always heal and help. Always kind. Never cruel. Never cowardly. Never give up and never give in.

The mystery of the week

Nardole turns up for a brief cameo (are they ever going to develop Nardole as a character? I don’t dislike Nardole or Matt Lucas as Nardole, but he has zero to work with). Why is Nardole convinced The Doctor shouldn’t time travel? What is inside that damn box? My vote is on someone Gallifreyan. The John Simm Master? More than one Master? Or maybe another Time Lord from classic Who?

Thin Ice: 9/10 inky stars as series 10’s strongest episode yet

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Doctor Who Smile Review

I’m keen to review this before tonight and Thin Ice (why does time always fly away from me when I try to watch the show live?) So what did I think of Smile, in which Twelve and Bill journey to human beings in the future ala Nine/Rose and The End of the World (is this series deliberately riffing off Series 1 of RDT Who like Series 5 riffed off Rose/Mickey through Amy/Rory? Maybe). I hated In The Forest of the Night penned by the same script writer, but I thought Smile, bar a rushed ending, was actually quite good. Not amazing, not terrible, but not bad either.

So what happened? Bill gets to choose where the TARDIS takes her for her first real adventure as companion and she chooses the future. The Doctor takes Bill to see humanity of the future, a future where emoji robots help to regulate emotion for the soon to appear humans who may well have lost everything. Only something has gone horribly wrong. The original human team sent to start the new colony all died before they could complete their mission. Why?

This story reminded me an awful lot of Michael Crichten’s Prey, a truly chilling horror, sci fi, thriller type which I read years ago around the time I read Jurassic Park for English class. In Prey humanity stretches itself too far in trying to create a new heaven and new earth and scientists experimenting, and the people close to them, pay the consequence.

The Companions

Again, I found Bill to be a wonderful companion in this episode. She’s funny, inquisitive, smart, blunt and blessedly normal after years of Clara the human cipher. I love that she doesn’t wait in the TARDIS as The Doctor commands her to do. I love that she tries to solve problems her own way. Pearl Mackie seems to be having the time of her life in this role and it comes across to the viewer.

I can’t say the same for Matt Lucas’ Nardole. In Series 10 I haven’t had a problem with his acting, but his character is a non-start. The story can work perfectly well without him being in it. I feel I could grow to like Nardole, but right now, I’m not sure what layer he adds to the story, if any.

The Doctor

I remember someone saying once that a Doctor always finds his feet with the companion who starts with him first. Though I liked Twelve and Clara far more than I liked Eleven and Clara (too similar in personality and they drowned each other out), Clara’s Doctor was still always Eleven. I feel like Capaldi is really able to come into his own with Bill. No previous writing baggage, no weight of expectation. There is a quiet confidence to this series, just as there was to series 9, and I am excited to see where this will land both Bill and Twelve.

Series Arc

Again, Moffat seems to be emulating RTD in going for a snippet story-arc style which is straight forward to follow, but will presumably come into focus come finale style. As long as Moffat doesn’t throw the proverbial kitchen sink at his final story arc in the finale as both he and RTD have done in the past, I’m happy to take a less complex approach to the story for now.

Who told The Doctor to guard the box? What’s inside it? Is it good, bad or both? Why is Nardole caught up in the guarding of the box? I guess we wait for tonight to find out the next lot of bread crumbs leading to the gingerbread house which is Twelve and Moffat’s end. See you on the other side…

Smile: 6/10 inky stars for an above average plot, with decent pacing until the rushed end (this could have been a two parter) and the continuation of a winning combo with Twelve/Bill.

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Doctor Who: The Pilot Review

And so it begins! A new season of Doctor Who after a year’s hiatus and two measly Christmas specials. And boy is it good to be back. It might not be the best drama on television, or the best comedy either, but for sheer reliable outrageous fun, a new episode of Doctor Who beats everything else out there hands down…

I went into this episode with no real expectations. I’ve tried to avoid the promotional hype around New Who as much as possible as I like to be surprised. I had seen images of Pearl Mackie, but had no real opinion of her appearance or acting ability. I like the Twelfth Doctor, I generally like Moffat Who and Series 9 was an especially strong season of the show in my humble opinion(the strongest since Series 5 by my book), but I was bored to tears by The Return of Doctor Mysterio. So what did I think?

I agree with many other pro reviewers who saw this as a soft series reboot, right down to the knowing episode title. We got a new companion who has no prior knowledge of The Doctor and his TARDIS, meaning we as viewers saw the show fresh through her eyes. We got an episode which doesn’t rely on past knowledge of the show (it’s arguable that the photos of Susan and River Song on The Doctor’s desk are merely fan service), and we got an alien lite episode ala Rose to get new viewers used to our favorite time travelling gang. Moffat still proves in this episode that he has a way of pinning down the human condition and relationships and how we understand the world the same way that our greatest fantasy writers do. Quotes like this one:

Hunger looks very much like evil from the other end of the cutlery. Do you think your bacon sandwich loves you back?

And this one:

Time. Time doesn’t pass. Time is an illusion. And Life is the magician. Because Life only lets you see one day at a time. You remember being alive yesterday, you hope you’re going to be alive tomorrow, so it feels like you are traveling one to the other, but nobody’s moving anywhere! Movies don’t really move. They’re just pictures, just lots and lots of pictures, all of them still. None of them moving, just frozen moments!

Simply reaffirm for me that beneath the story writing pressures and mistakes and clever gimmicks Moffat falls back on in his TV storytelling, there is a great fantasy novelist waiting for the perfect opportunity to come out hidden there somewhere. Anyhow, The Pilot is fun, if slight, with some great character moments for new companion, Bill.

New Companion Bill

I loved the concept of The Doctor as a university lecturer and I loved why Bill was in his office (because she smiled when confronted with questions she didn’t know the answer to). I wasn’t a huge fan of Clara or of her story trajectory and felt that she only really worked as a plot device until the Series 8 finale and all of Series 9 when she morphed into a Doctor-like role. With Bill, for the first time in a while, there is a companion in the TARDIS who meets The Doctor by chance and bonds with The Doctor through common quirks of personality, rather than because they are a mystery to be solved. I like mysteries as much as the next person, but am ready for a companion who is exactly who she says she is.

Having said that, a friend’s partner did point out the way the camera panned on the Doctor’s photographs of River Song and his granddaughter Susan coupled with the way The Doctor went out of his way to take photographs of Bill’s Mum to surmise that Bill could somehow be related to Susan through her Mum. Though I’m always happy for some in show Susan loving, and it’s not a shabby theory, I’m not sure I’m ready for another companion mystery. Rather, I assumed that The Doctor went back in time to take photograph’s of Bill’s Mum because Bill had been sad when she mentioned she didn’t have any photos of her Mum to The Doctor (and we all know The Doctor doesn’t interfere in people or planets unless there’s children crying).

Bill and her character was a key part of The Pilot in other ways too. This week’s horror film inspired big bad puddle needed a host to move around through and landed on Bill’s crush, Heather, as the perfect host. Bill’s story about selling chips to Heather was a nice way of establishing Bill’s sexuality and the mundane boredom of her life in comparison to the one we know she will soon gain through travelling with The Doctor. It also meant we felt sad when Heather had to let Bill go and Bill had to let Heather go, beyond saving. The obligatory companion ‘bigger on the inside’ was excellent as was the toilet gag and I loved the brief view of Australia before The Doctor whisked Bill to The Daleks and another nod to yesteryear (this time through Destiny of the Daleks and the Movellans). By episode’s end, I was grinning as much as Bill was at joining The Doctor and Nardole in The TARDIS.

Nardole: The Second Companion

I always like it when there’s more than one companion in The TARDIS. There’s more scope for actor’s to bounce off each other. Look no further than The Pond years where The Doctor vs River vs Amy vs Rory banter was enormously fun. I’m not always keen on Matt Lucas, but his Nardole is growing on me. I feel that with time and the right script, Nardole could really come into his own beyond the mere comedic.

The Mystery

For once in Moffat Who the mystery starts light. Just what is The Doctor and Nardole protecting inside the university and why? Is it to protect something or to prevent something getting out? And will the show keep revisiting Twelve as the university lecturer so we can keep revisiting this mysterious box? Does that mean we’ll see more of Bill and her foster Mum as Bill navigates time travel and ordinary life and relationships? Certainly, one of the major criticisms of Moffat Who is the lack of meaningful family life for his companions, so this could be a good way to keep Bill feeling rounded. Finally, will Bill find out what’s in the box, and it it, as my friend’s partner suspects, connected to Bill in some way?

There’s only one way to find out folks, and that’s by tuning in next week…

The Pilot: 8/10 inky stars for a solid and fun start to series 10

PS: Did I seen Simm Master in that series trailer? WHAT ARE YOU PLANNING MOFF????

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