I have to be honest, I sat in front of the tv on the 25th December at 6.15pm and muttered “Please don’t be sh*t” under my breath before this began.
I am loving Peter Capaldi as the Doctor, and Clara has always been a fantastic companion, but series 8 has just not quite hit the mark for me so far.
I want a grumpy old man as the Doctor, and we got an old man pretending to be in his twenties… more to do with the writing I feel than the performance.
Series 8 was supposed to be a bit of a reboot, starting all over again with a new cycle of regenerations etc. Peter was now playing the “First Doctor” – who was a bit of a grumpy, tetchy, old git most of the time. The thing that made William Hartnell great was the way that he had that way of being childlike when it was required and could play those lighter moments so naturally.
What we have in series 8 is a Doctor that is still trying to be in his mid twenties – like the previous incarnation – and it doesn’t always work. Yes, we have the dark moments but they are few and far between. I want the Doctor to be dark and mysterious again.
It pains me to say this – as I can’t stand RTD – but he did the best thing ever when he decided to get rid of all the baggage – Timelords – and have the Doctor as a tortured soul wandering the Universe. This adds a fantastic dimension to the show, he can’t just go “Oi, Timelords… give us a hand”. It gave a depth to the character and Chris Ecclestone went with it bringing the Doctor back with a bang.
I want Peter Capaldi to be fantastic – as he is an outstanding actor – but the writing needs to give him more to do than running about the TARDIS being a big kid.
Which, getting back on topic, was why I quite enjoyed the Christmas Special. I’m not saying it was the best story ever, but after a difficult series it was a breath of fresh air. Once you get over Santa being a dream it settles down into a base-under-siege-but-not-really-cos-something-weird-is-going-on type of story.
I’m already looking forward to series 9 – and will always love the show – but please do something to make the Doctor special again.