Review – Doctor Who, Death in Heaven (Series 8 Episode 12)

Doctor_Who_LogoFinal episode for series 8 done and while I am basking in the Whovian glow.  However, there is still a nagging impression of incompleteness.  I’m sure there are more than a few of us out there who feel the way I do.

So, the good, the bad and the cyber.

Clara throughout this series has been a strong character written well and acted superbly, but sadly her role was played down for this episode.  She didn’t have the same fire (lave pun) as in Dark Water or the previous seasons installments.  I am not sure if this was intentional so that Cyber-Pink (Danny) could shine and bow out of the series with style, which he did.

Cyber-Pink. The biggest issue I have with this is why was it there that only one other Cyberman excluding Danny was able to break their coding.  It’s not like there isn’t anyone else in the world who doesn’t love as strongly.  It comes across a little lazy for the writers if I’m being honest.

Regardless of this point, Danny’s end does provide Clara the reason to continue on with the Doctor and yes, it could also mean she uses it as a clean break, but I don’t think this to be the case.  We have seen her loyalty and love of the Doctor, her choice to lie to Danny when she decided to stay and travel in the TARDIS and while a conclusion it doesn’t feel like an end of the character.

Question. If memory serves me correctly and basic common sense (yes, I know its a Sc-Fi TV series), how did the dead become Cybermen.  While I understand a single piece of Cyberman can infect a host, it needs metal to build/upgrade the host. Right?

Missy, my Missy.  All I can say is Michelle Gomez as the psychopathic Master was spot on (loved the bit when she removes her hat and calls out, only a pound to take a selfie! and everyone drops the money in it), there is a feel of the off kilter Heath Ledger portrayal of the Joker.  In my opinion, it would be crime to Whovians everywhere if she did not return in series 9.  The only real issue I have is the Master would never bowed down to the Doctor, his name is the MASTER after all.  I can see no reason for her to build the Cybermen only to give them to the Doctor as a birthday present (and now we know the Doctors birthday!).

At least we all know she isn’t dead and the Master will be back.  It seems fairly obvious or probable that the last Cyberman did not shoot her but teleported her in some way.  She would not have gone to all the trouble of rebuilding them and not added safeguards for them turning on her.

Finally the question is answered, is the Doctor a good man.  What do you know, the answer is complicated and simple, he’s an idiot in a blue box afraid of the monster he could become.  I enjoyed the flash backs to previous episodes and series as he comes to the realisation that he is neither good or bad, but a flawed person doing the best they can, much like the best heroes.   What I found lacking was that the internal agony, indecision and mistrust of himself lasted only a few seconds and then he was all right again. I would have loved to see this drawn out more, giving the viewer a closer look into the internal workings of the Doctors mind.

** Side point, what a pointless death of the Osgood.  Regardless of the fact she would have been a great companion, its served no purpose to the story.  We already knew that Missy was unstable, violet and capable of anything, all this did was kill off a character who provides continuity tot he series much like the Kate Steward character.

For me I enjoyed the spoilers and hints to possible future episodes:
– The Good Brigadier Cyberman, last seen flying off into space.
– The mention of the Doctors family, previous wifes, kids, grand kids and Jenny.  It’s about time Jenny came back!
– The search for Gallifrey beginning in earnest  – The Doctors reaction to Gallifrey not being in the place Missy said it was for me was the most real protrayal of Capladi’s proformance to date.
– This idea is a little out there.  While a throw away line by Clara to the Cyberman, “I am the doctor”, I think there is some traction and story here waiting to raise.

Overall, a nice finish to the series if not a great one.  Hoping it builds up more in series 9.


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