1 out of 4 found this review helpful.
A story that felt clever, coherent, emotional, fun and ticked every possible box: public-friendly, 3D friendly, cinema friendly, classic Who fan friendly, reboot fan friendly, fans of both friendly, Tennant's Zygon crush friendly... And it had Hurt being splendidly posh, Clara being warm and real, a nod to a much-missed Brigadier and soon to be respected new Doctor. And Tom Baker. And - best of the lot - Matt Smith.
Can you imagine how much time the Moff stared out of his window before typing the first words?
I loved this at home and in the cinema. The cleverness of the pictures, smoothness and clarity of the direction, the sweep of the music. Okay, enough lists. You watched it as well.
So let's watch it again. I'm quietly hoping there'll be more than one caretaker this time...
0 out of 4 found this review helpful.
This was a fantastic ending for Smith's Doctor. The saving grace, right and proper, was Clara's speech to the Time Lords, but - gosh - Matt Smith's final performance was brilliant. He was his Doctor happy, sad, young, old, flirty and lethal. All convincing and all colourful. "I don't get it" and the moment after the second regeneration cycle was triggered showed an actor effortlessly touching us through layers of mask. The final speech showed an actor catching a prosaic moment without leaving us detached from the emotion of it all.
And huzzah to Jenna Coleman. Her reactions to the dying Eleven and startling Twelve were pitched perfectly. From fear to comedy-shock on a pin. She's become a modern Sarah Jane in the last year and I'm really looking forward to what she gets to do and where their friendship goes later this year.
And most huzzahs to the Moff. He gave us a surprise: a story of solid breadth, marking out the years of a Doctor cut short (one series too few, damn it!). Filled with a bunch of well-used tools from his toolbox, I cared more for the emotional content than the retro-fitting of old story lines. But even that went nicely and nearly (nearly...) made sense of the awkwardness of Smith's first year. The four-year conceit that prior events resulted from this Time...my fan-brain loves it. Backwards lists! But, watching it as a story, the conceit didn't matter nearly as much as the new one: letting the Doctor age heroically, romantically.
This was gorgeous.
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
McGann is MY doctor, so this is obviously going to be a bit biased. If you've ever heard any of his audios, you already know how brilliant he can be, and he shows you every reason why in this. The most telling phrase probably came from my wife. She's a big Who fan, but hadn't experienced anything from the Eighth Doctor before this. After seeing this and then "The Day of the Doctor," she said, "John Hurt was good, but I don't see why they couldn't have just had Paul McGann do that."