Monday, 5 June 2017

Whole Lotta History

When looking for a new Doctor Who showrunner, I wonder if the BBC considered someone who’s now written a number of episodes, created and run his own fantasy series for five years – including the need to replace the entire cast at one point, which is… kinda relevant experience for Doctor Who - and been so successful his show was bought to be remade in the US? Nah, they probably just went straight to Chibnall, didn’t they?

“The Lie of the Land” by Toby Whithouse, directed by Wayne Yip. Spoilers after the cut.

This is what the three-part story of the Monks was leading up to, and although the middle part was a mess I think it’s an interesting idea to have the same threat spread over three very different types of stories. Plus Toby Whithouse pulls off the finale, in an episode that kept me interested throughout in its alternate reality. It goes to some pretty dark places, most notably in the Doctor’s extreme test of Bill, which was the Twelfth Doctor really channeling the Seventh in terms of manipulating his companion in quite dark ways.

The other Doctor’s era that came to mind was the Third, not because Peter Capaldi’s performance reminded me particularly of Pertwee, but because this series must surely be the most overtly political since the 1970s. This time around the Monks’ rewriting of History became an overt reference to Fake News – so overt the term was actually used. I continue to really like the way Doctor Who's educational remit has almost been reclaimed in making it about specific current issues.

Interested to see where this Missy storyline's going as well - it's intriguing if she really is learning compassion but on the other hand you wouldnt actually want The Master to turn good for too long.

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