Friday, 10 October 2014
The Moon's (not) a balloon
"Kill the Moon" by Peter Harness, directed by Paul Wilmshurst. Spoilers after the cut.
Overall this series seems to have been going down pretty well with people, but I've not always agreed; Peter Capaldi is a very different Doctor to Matt Smith and while the writing clearly knows this, I don't think it's always known what to do about it. He's obviously a darker Doctor, so an episode like this that's more of a dark and creepy one is a better match than some of the romps we've had lately. I'm not saying the fun episodes should go, because the variety is part of what makes Doctor Who work. I just think something like "Robot of Sherwood," that utterly acknowledged Twelve's grumpiness and got its humour out of throwing him in a situation he wouldn't enjoy, is a better way of going about it than trying to make him wacky like in "The Caretaker."
"Kill the Moon" also goes back to the suggestion from earlier this series that Capaldi's Doctor is "alien" in the same way that Sylvester McCoy's was, i.e. that he's overtly manipulative, even and most especially of the people he supposedly cares for most, and doesn't understand why anyone would have a problem with that. The episode's conclusion suggests Clara isn't someone who'll let him get away with that as easily as Ace did.