Listen Closely…

One of the great hopes I had for series 8 of Doctor Who was that we’d see the show step back from its plot-heavy storytelling of recent seasons, and focus more on exploring the characters. With a new Doctor (and especially with THAT actor playing him), I hoped Steven Moffat would seize the great opportunity before him: the opportunity to craft stories that are less about what the Doctor does, and more about who he is.

But I thought it too much to hope for an episode as inspired as “Listen.”

Maybe I should have aimed a little higher…

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Why I’m A Sucker For Unlikely-Hero Narratives

When it comes to Doctor Who, sometimes silliness is a bug, and sometimes it’s a feature.

It’s important to keep that in mind when you’re talking about this week’s episode. “Robot of Sherwood” is a mostly ridiculous story, but it’s so by design. On its surface, it’s little more than an excuse to have fun with the tropes of both Robin Hood and the Doctor.

And I pretty much loved it.
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Whoever Fights Daleks…

It probably goes without saying (so of course I’m saying it anyway) that you really can’t have Doctor Who without the Daleks.

Created by Terry Nation, the Doctor’s most famous enemy was introduced in the first few weeks of the show’s existence, and (as legend has it) quickly sent younger viewers scrambling behind the sofa. Since then, nearly every Doctor has had to contend with them onscreen, and every showrunner has had to figure out how to keep them as frightening as they were in that very first encounter.

With the latest episode, Steven Moffat and Phil Ford have attempted that feat by introducing them to someone just as frightening…

…the Doctor.

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