Series 10

Discussions of the classic british sci-fi show.
Post Reply
Level 2 Dungeoneer
Level 2 Dungeoneer
Posts: 148
Joined: 28 Aug 2009, 12:04
Location: Market Harborough, Leicestershire

Series 10

Post by BBrooks »

WARNING: Contains Spoilers!
My personal thoughts & views on Series 10.

The Pilot.
I haven't been this excited for a DW series since 2010, sometimes a hiatus is a good thing for a show, you look forward to it more when it returns and the programme-makers have longer to come up with something great. Pearl Mackie is terrific as Bill Potts, she's funny, smart and her youthful energy is the perfect contrast to the Twelfth Doctor, also Matt Lucas is hilarious as Nardole. The idea of a monster living in a puddle is so simple & brilliant, that I'm surprised it hasn't been done before and I'm sure kids are going to be scared to take a shower after watching this. I'd say it's one of the best season openers Steven Moffat has written.

I loved this fun story which had amazing locations, the scenes involving the swarm eating humans alive and then finding out that their bones had been ground up for fertliser, were quite shocking (for 7:20pm). This had a similar plot to the Sylvester McCoy serial The Happiness Patrol (1988), which involved a city whose inhabitants had to be happy, unless they died. I love how Capaldi's Doctor has evolved from being dour/moody in his first season to being more happier & fun now, he has really grown into the part. Those emoji robots were cool & well designed, but I think they were more of a merchandise ploy, I can already see the toys and radio-controlled versions of them to buy.

Thin Ice.
A giant sea monster trapped beneath the Thames, that's killing people in Victorian London and only The Doctor & Bill can save them. It's a plot-line that is quintessential Doctor Who! There's something brilliant about episodes set in the 1800's which works somehow, maybe it's the simple idea of having Sci-fi elements set in historical settings, which the show has been doing since 1963.
For Bill, this episode was where the fun ended & the serious business began, with her facing up against Death, Murder, Slavery and Racially-motivated insults. A great performance from Mackie, which confirms that she was the right choice for playing her.

Knock Knock.
A chilling Horror tale, guaranteed to get those younger viewers hiding behind the sofa yet again. You know those scary moments during the middle of the night when you hear the odd creak or bang in your house, well this episode centred around that and there were some genuinely frightening moments.
David Suchet is always brilliant in any role, he must now be up there as one of the best guest stars in DW history and certainly one of the best original villains since the show's revival! Also it's nice to know something new about The Doctor, I like chinese food too. :-)

From Alien Insects to Space Zombies! Great to see Nardole getting more fleshed out, also it's refreshing to see a male non-human companion in the TARDIS who (it seems) has the technical skills to match. There was a display of true heroism from The Doctor here who risks his life (and eyesight) to save Bill, a girl he's only known for a short time. At times it felt like one of those old studio-set episodes from the Classic era, with the characters running down a multitude of corridors which all looked the same, the set design/costumes etc. were stylishly done though and the whole episode looked great. That twist at the end was something I didn't see coming, even with a season full of one-parters, they can still pull off an amazing cliffhanger!

A complex story which had Steven Moffat written all over it, I think this pushed the concept of "timey-wimey" to the full. Making The Doctor blind has turned out to be a stroke of genius, Capaldi had some great lines in this. Finding out that it's Missy inside the vault wasn't surprising, I had suspected it a few weeks before. Michelle Gomez just gets better & better and we finally found out the reason why Nardole became a companion and his purpose for being there. I loved the Matrix-style twist involving "Veritas", also The Monks had a brilliant scary look to them, a strong mid-season story which ramped up the action.

The Pyramid at the End of the World.
A nice follow-on from the previous episode, which marks the first two-parter of the season. The Monks show The Doctor a vision of the terrible fate of Earth and the only way to save it is by handing the planet over to them. What would you do in that situation?
We later find out that it's not war/invasion that will destroy Earth, but a simple mistake. This story was all about "What if?", e.g - What if Erica hadn't have smashed her reading glasses?, she would have spotted the error her hungover colleague made at the lab. Brilliant performances by the cast and the sight of Tony Gardner (Brian from My Parents are Aliens) melting to death was a good way of destroying my childhood memories. ;-)

The Lie of the Land.
I was getting flashbacks to The Sound of Drums (2007) whilst watching this, it had that same feel and look to it. The regeneration stunt was both great & slightly annoying, they did it better back in Series 4 with David Tennant nine years ago, Classic Who never had to resort to those tactics to pull in the viewers. I suppose it was just a way of warming us up for Capaldi's inevitable exit.
I liked the idea of The Doctor asking Missy for help as a last resort, because even though The Master has been defeated countless times, it's been hinted at that he/she has a greater mind than The Doctor's. It was an interesting scene to watch and the best bit in the episode, but I'd love to know how Missy knew about "Love Island" when she's been locked in that vault for so long!

Empress of Mars.
This had all the hallmarks of a classic Who story and as usual a quality script from Mark Gatiss, which wouldn't have looked out of place in any era. A brilliant way of introducing the Ice Warriors to a new generation whilst also pleasing the old, whereas other villains appearances have changed, their design has always remained generally the same and it still looks effective. Loved the Ice Queen's look!
The Victorian Soldiers had all those funny cliches (the Posh accents, the Moustache's, Tea Drinking, saying "I Say"), they could of easily been one-dimensional characters but Gatiss made them so much more than that. Also it was nice to see the Alpha Centauri cameo at the end and still being voiced by the same actress. A real treat for the Classic fans!

The Eaters of Light.
The previous week we had Victorians vs. Aliens & now it's Romans vs. Aliens! Returning writer Rona Munro (Survival) did a grand job with this one, based on true events. There were some great locations, full of atmosphere and the whole thing overall was well-photographed.
Some people moaned about the historical inaccuracies, but if it doesn't interfere too much with the plot then that's fine and you can always bend the truth when it's Sci-Fi. I liked that the episode was a self-contained story, it was only until Missy appeared at the end when it went back into Series mode. There's nothing wrong with arc-driven seasons, but it's nice to have one-off adventures which aren't bogged down with everything else, Series 10 has been a good balance between the two. I'll never look at a Crow in the same way again!

World Enough and Time.
The Mondasian Cybermen make their long-awaited & much hyped return, that iconic design still works 50 years on. It replicated those old-fashioned scares that we used to get in all those classic BBC sci-fi/fantasy shows. The Doctor has made one of his biggest mistakes, all because he let his ego & confidence get the better of him.
As for the ending, I wish the show hadn't revealed that John Simm was returning, just imagine how incredible it would have been otherwise. As a result, I knew it was him in disguise from the moment he appeared, THAT spoiler ruined one hell of a reveal! However it was still great to see Simm back on our screens, hopefully this will silence his critics and make them realise that he is (and always was) a perfectly good Master.

The Doctor Falls.
So we have Two Masters for the price of one and they make quite a double-act, most of the comedy stemmed from their banter. I like to think that The Master has survived Missy's attack and cheated death again, after all he knows himself better than anybody else. Maybe he can now change his own timeline, in order to save Missy (and himself) from her fate.
It was a great sight seeing both Classic & Modern Cybermen marching alongside each other, they looked very imposing on-screen. Bill & Nardole's exits were actually well-written and they went out on a high, I wish they wouldn't keep killing the modern companions though, why can't they just get dropped off somewhere.
I for one was very happy to see David Bradley as William Hartnell again, the Christmas special is going to be very interesting. They might stick with the Mondas theme and we could have a Tenth Planet-style adventure with the Twelfth & First Doctors.

As you can tell from the above reviews, I have really enjoyed this series and the Capaldi era has got better & better with each passing year. Peter has given some of his best performances as The Doctor in Series 10 and his incarnation has now hit it's stride, so it's sad to know that he won't be back next year. Also Steven Moffat has saved his best till last, giving us a strong season to bow out on. The show is currently on top form!
User avatar
Level 3 Dungeoneer
Level 3 Dungeoneer
Posts: 494
Joined: 12 May 2013, 22:25

Re: Series 10

Post by wombstar »

I don't think the show has gotten worse or better since it's revival. every series has a couple of really naff episodes, a couple of absolute awesome episodes and a then all the rest with are generally positive.

Just a pity spoilers spoiled the final with Master and First doc returning. would have been so good had we not known in advance.

The Eaters of Light was the flop of the series for me this time, wasn't too keen on the monk trilogy either but it was ok.

And we might get a really good Christmas special this time, i find they're usually a bit rubbish.

bring back 7
It's always the cracked ones that let the light in
Post Reply