**** BEWARE!! THERE ARE SPOILERS EVERYWHERE! FOR AS FAR AS THE EYE CAN SEE!!! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED. ****
This week's Doctor Who episode has officially become my favourite so far. I was a fan... I was a MASSIVE fan. In fact, The Caretaker freakin' rocked my world.
I want to make this very clear, and you can check this by reading my previous reviews on this particular subject, I have loved this series. Doctor Who is awesome and there have been suitable enough moments throughout Series 8 that have left me excited and intrigued etc. Having said that, I haven't yet had an episode that left me tingling with excitement... that is, until this episode.
I am a DW geek. I am a Whovian of unhealthy proportions. I will talk about an episode I've just watched until people make up excuses to leave, I will watch episodes over and over again because I simply can't get enough of them, and I'm overwhelmed with the sparkling newness of brand new episodes. However, with each of these episodes so far, I have only watched them a total of around two times, and mostly in the context of refreshing my memory for this review. This still might seem excessive to some people, but when you compare it to the 5 times I was watching each episode in Matt Smith's first series, you can understand that the enthusiasm has dropped a little.
On Saturday night, for the first time this series, as soon as that episode finished, I hit refresh and watched the episode again straight after. I finished that episode and had enjoyed myself so much I needed to immediately experience it again. My reasons for loving this episode so much? Okay, here they are:
I am a character driven person in both the things I read/watch and in what I write myself. I like to read too much into a person's personality and look into why a character would behave a certain way and what instigated them to do it. I find people fascinating and it is my favourite thing in story telling. I need a bit of dialogue and character development in my TV shows, otherwise I will lose interest very quickly. For that reason, this episode suited me down to the ground.
I am pretty much in love with Danny. He may be my favourite "boyfriend of a companion" that we've had yet. From the moment he came onto our screens, I adored him. I don't totally know why as he seems far too short tempered for my liking and some of his reactions in this episode left me a little perplexed, but in a way, it was what made me love him more. This episode saw the big reveal to Danny. He finds out that Clara is travelling with an alien all across time and space and he, quite rightly, struggles just a bit with it. He stands up for himself with the Doctor, which I don't think we've really seen so far in the companion other halves... Looking back at Mickey and Rory, as much as I loved them (especially Rory) they came across as a bit like wet blankets compared to their girlfriends. Danny, however, seems more of a match for Clara. He doesn't allow the Doctor to order him about or tell him what to do. He not only sticks up for himself but he fights back and provides insight into the Doctor's opinions that not even Clara was able to see.
Do I like how angry he got at times? It seemed a little weird. The scene in the TARDIS where he's all "yes, sir; no, sir" etc and so forth, seemed a little disjointed to me... the first time I watched it, especially. However, this didn't make me not like it, but rather feel all the more intrigued by Danny's character.
Clara is awesome in this episode, and Capaldi is absolutely hilarious. This is very good news, considering this was the one thing I mentioned from the last review that I was missing in this series. I am loving how rude he has got and I am loving how Clara deals with it. Clara has well and truly joined the ranks of my top fav companions. This leads me nicely into my second reason for adoring this episode:
There's no denying it; Matt Smith knew how to deliver a funny line in his reign as The Doctor. He got the timing perfect for almost all of his humour. Capaldi has had some funny lines, but they haven't quite hit the funny bone for me... that is, up until this episode. This episode made me laugh continuously.
With the exception of the overly repeated "PE teacher" joke which got over used about halfway through their full use of it, I have to applaud the humour in this episode. What's more, it all stems from Capaldi's new rude personality. He insults people in an awesome way and I can't get enough of it. Also, there were some highly amusing fan arts going around on Tumblr showing their depiction of what the time must have been like when the Doctor had sulked with the Otters following his argument with River.
I'm not overly sure about young Courtney Woods as of yet. She seems a little throw away and altogether not written into the show very well. Every time she's turned up, it's seemed like her appearance was the teensiest bit disjointed with the rest of the episode. Even in this episode, where she played a fairly significant part, it almost felt as if the episode could have done without her. I'm sure Moffat has his reasons, and she probably has more of a part to play in future episodes, possibly in the overall season arc, but I feel like she could have been introduced better than she was. We know for certain that she's in the next episode in a spacesuit, so hopefully she begins to make more sense.
3. The awesome ending
Okay, so I have heard from people that they haven't been enjoying the arc of this season. People have suggested that they could do without Missy altogether. I, on the other hand, as mentioned in my first review, have never been more excited and intrigued about an arc as I have been in this series.
However, after this episode, I have well and truly run out of theories on what the hell is going on. I had previously bought into the idea that the dead people were being transported away seconds before they die. However, in this episode, we clearly see a policeman blown up, leaving behind a burnt decapitated hand and then turning up in a white room completely intact. I am finally beginning to entertain the thought that they are actually introducing the concept of an afterlife into Doctor Who, which could open up a whole can of very exciting worms...
What also excited me was that we got to meet another employee of the after life. Suggesting that it was some form of business rather than just a slightly unhinged lady picking up dead people as she goes. Moffat has suitably increased the intrigue for this storyline even more than before.
Missy was also angry/upset in this episode. Should I read too much into it and think that it had something to do with what had happened in the episode? Had the Doctor/Clara/Danny done something that she wasn't happy with? Or was it to do with something else altogether? Or maybe it hasn't got to do with anything at all and she is prone to mood swings... who knows? I'm so excited about it though... we are halfway through the series and, if it didn't mean that soon I'm going to be bereft of new Doctor Who episodes again, I would be desperate to get to the end so that I can find out.
All in all, I thought this episode was awesome. It made me nervous in certain parts, but I laughed all the way through and it definitely has worked as a catalyst to warming me to these three main characters. I'm really looking forward to the episode when Danny begins to travel with the Doctor, although there's something in the back of my brain that suggests that might never happen. Mainly due to the whole 'one's a soldier, the other hates soldiers' thing. Regardless, it doesn't look like it's going to happen in the next episode. Courtney's taking his place instead... I don't really know how I feel about that.
Peace out my lovelies.