Doctor Who Episode Review – “Dark Water”/”Death in Heaven” + A look back at Series 8

When I realized two Saturdays ago that this season of Doctor Who was almost over, I felt a bit… depressed? Which was surprising, considering my general sense of disappointment in this season of the show. (oh, please note that I use “series” and “season” interchangeably, but they mean the same thing) And on Saturday night, as the credits rolled and we got a glimpse of the Christmas special, I came to a sad realization: Not only was I more depressed than ever before, but I honestly didn’t care about the Christmas special.

And that’s not to say that the two part finale wasn’t good, because it was excellent. But it was also depressing. And it left me with a sense of: “I don’t want to keep watching, and I definitely don’t want Moffat to stay.” (Be warned: SPOILERS are contained in this post)

Well, the first part, “Dark Water” was actually pretty enjoyable. I liked how most of it was character centered instead of plot centered. And at the beginning of the episode, I burst into tears. This is why I warned about spoilers, because there is no way I could review this episode without spoiling this. Danny died. Yup. Classic Moffat right there. Take a wonderful, lovable character and kill them off. And the the woman named Missy was definitely a nutcase. But when it was revealed at the very end that she was not just some random enemy, I wasn’t too surprised. I had kind of guessed that our old friend “The Master” would be returning. Overall, the first part was good, but I wasn’t a huge fan of the skeletons everywhere.

The second part, “Death in Heaven” was good, but it just got more and more depressing as time went on. I did love getting to see Kate Lethbrige and Osgood back with their mighty UNIT forces, and the nods to the Brigadier made me melt a little. I love Osgood. She is sweet, smart, and a VERY cool character. Aaaaand… yup. She’s dead. Missy disintegrated her and made the Doctor mad, and the worst part was that the Doctor had basically just invited Osgood to travel with him. *sobs* I spent the entire episode trying to figure out what Missy’s plan was, and when I realized that it was all basically a way to show the Doctor “look, you and me are the same”, I felt kind of mad. Like, that was what all this emotional pain was for???? But I think the one part of the episode that had the most impact on me, was the reveal of Danny’s fate. He was turned into a Cyberman, but still possessed his emotions. I started crying when he pulled the mask off and showed Clara. And when he begged her and the Doctor to take away his emotions, it was worse. And when they finally did take them away so that he would no longer be in pain, Danny kept his promise not to hurt Clara, and instead held her in his metal Cyberman arms. (tears much?) And that bombshell about the Brigadier at the end? I was crying and freaking out at the same time! One of my favorite lines from this episode was when Clara was about to turn of Danny’s emotions. “I wasn’t very good at it… But I did love you.” She said. The fact that she admitted that she had messed up really turned on the waterworks.

There is so much more I could say, but I think I shall conclude with my general thoughts on the season. Did I hate some of it. Indeed. Did I feel much of it was “meh”? Yup. But were there some episodes that I truly loved? Yes, there were. But to be honest, the season in general was a letdown. The Doctor is so… Not the Doctor? He’s cold and detached for the most part, seeming to care very little. He even mocks humans, despite the fact that all of his previous selves loved Earth and it’s people. He talks about how one man’s death isn’t important, and yet in the 11th Doctor, he said “In 900 years of space and time I’ve never met anyone who wasn’t important”. I feel like I am watching an entirely different show from the past Doctors. The only thing keeping me from a total disconnect was Clara. She grew and changed and messed up and did her best to fix it, and that is why I loved her. She wasn’t presented as some sort of angel companion, nor was she completely bad. She showcased the human flaws that we all have, and in the end, payed a heavy price.

My biggest problem is that we have more questions and NO answers. Such as:

  • How did the Master return, and where is Gallifrey?
  • How did the Doctor and Clara meet Orson Pink, who is Danny’s grandson? Is Clara pregnant with Danny’s baby perhaps?
  • What happened to the little boy that Danny sent “back from the dead” in his place? Did he get to his family?

And many more. Well, that’s my last Doctor Who review until Christmas folks! And to be honest, I am ok with that. I think I am going to spend some time watching all of the past Doctors, from the very first, and be reminded what Doctor Who is all about. Stay Nerdy!

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