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80

Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 180 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Thick of It's Peter Capaldi takes over as the 12th Doctor as he continues his adventures with Clara (Jenna Coleman).
  • Genre(s): Drama, Action & Adventure, Science Fiction
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Aug 21, 2014
    100
    The episode is about making Clara, and the audience, feel at home with the new Doctor. She does, and we do.
  2. Reviewed by: Maureen Ryan
    Aug 22, 2014
    80
    There is a welcome weighty quality to this week's adventure tale, but its sense of substance comes from embracing the rich potential of the character's depth, not from overstuffing the hour with an excess of "clever" meta-commentary.
  3. Reviewed by: Geoff Berkshire
    Aug 22, 2014
    80
    What Capaldi lacks in youthful energy, he more than makes up for in gravitas and wry eccentricity.... Everyone involved can take particular pride in the centerpiece restaurant tiff between Clara and the Doctor, which cements their new relationship and showcases the instant chemistry between Coleman and Capaldi.
  4. Reviewed by: Mary McNamara
    Aug 25, 2014
    80
    For a program known for its harum-scarum pace and keep-up-or-shut-up iconography, the Season 8 Saturday premiere of BBC America's Doctor Who opens slowly--even with the T. rex--and radiates a newly modern self-consciousness, albeit dressed in Victorian garb.
  5. Reviewed by: Curt Wagner
    Aug 22, 2014
    75
    Coleman's rich performance matches Capaldi's as Clara struggles with the regeneration of her Doctor.... The Doctor may be different, but he's as entertaining as ever.
  6. Reviewed by: Mike Hale
    Aug 22, 2014
    70
    Capaldi's Doctor is not just older but looks to be drier in his humor, more reticent, more coldblooded and dangerous. From a critic’s point of view, that’s interesting and potentially an improvement.... In other ways, the season premiere is a bit of a space holder, a middling story that’s concerned mainly with introducing Mr. Capaldi and establishing the relationship between the new Doctor and his sidekick, Clara.
  7. Reviewed by: Cody Ray Shafer
    Aug 26, 2014
    70
    The story serves as little more than set pieces to the real conflict here, which is Clara's relationship with The Doctor.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 72
  2. Negative: 39 out of 72
  1. Nov 4, 2014
    10
    Its always tough to get used to a new doctor, but Peter Capaldi does a good job of showing us how he is ready to take on the role. This seasonIts always tough to get used to a new doctor, but Peter Capaldi does a good job of showing us how he is ready to take on the role. This season of Doctor Who continues to give the audience great science fiction action and just the right amount of weirdness that we are used to seeing in Doctor who. Expand
  2. Oct 19, 2014
    9
    I know that the critics love this season, but the reaction was HUGELY mixed. I like it though! I think that this season is a bit underrated,I know that the critics love this season, but the reaction was HUGELY mixed. I like it though! I think that this season is a bit underrated, and I like the new doctor. Expand
  3. Sep 2, 2014
    7
    Not as great as the first 4 seasons, but I like the new season so far, sooooo much better than the past three seasons which were absoluteNot as great as the first 4 seasons, but I like the new season so far, sooooo much better than the past three seasons which were absolute crap,Season 6 in particular, the show's never gonna be great again because of Steven Moffat, BUT it can Still be "good" because of Peter Capaldi who I like way more than Matt Smith but we'll see if he screws up before the season's end Expand
  4. Aug 23, 2014
    3
    Peter Capaldi is very far from the previous doctors

    Hasn't neither the energy nor the charisma of Matt Smith or David Tennant. The first
    Peter Capaldi is very far from the previous doctors

    Hasn't neither the energy nor the charisma of Matt Smith or David Tennant. The first episode of Season 8 was definitely boring and bland.
    Expand
  5. Jan 3, 2015
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Moffat's Doctor Who is Prettier on the Outside but Stupider on the Inside.

    I have been watching Doctor Who almost my entire life from the first episode with the first Doctor (William Hartnell – 1963). The original concept of the show was to be a children’s’ science show. As it matured, Doctor Who became the thinking person’s sci-fi show. It had almost no budget and no special effects but it did have incredibly good writing with meticulous internal logic. This is what saved the show from its reliance on tinfoil and toilet plungers.

    Now the show appears to be in the opposite situation. The reboot of Doctor Who (2005 to present) has all the resources of modern CGI technology and a decent budget but the writing for the past four years has been desperately in need of a toilet plunger. Episode after episode, logic is thrown out into the vortex leaving massive plot holes in the fabric of space and time. Situations that could be explained logically in one or two lines are simply left unexplained or attributed to vague miracles, mysteries or happenstance. Characters repeatedly die and come back as if they were soap opera stars. Why the absence of coherent plots? Why the lazy short cuts? Why write the show into crazy corners in the first place? One needs only to go back and watch a few episodes of the Troughton or Pertwee or Tom Baker or Tennant series to appreciate how the writing was mostly consistent with the show’s canon and the characters.

    Under Moffat’s leadership there hasn’t been a single episode that has been free of logical gaps, implausible twists and unbelievable resolutions. The key to good fantasy/science fiction is helping your audience suspend their disbelief. I’ve tried really hard to be carried along by the story and the superb acting performances but the clumsy writing and jarring plot holes keep throwing buckets of water on my suspended disbelief bringing it crashing to the ground. In contrast, the seasons helmed by Russell T. Davies (2005-2010), though not without flaws, were consistently logical. The 9th and 10th Doctors (Christoper Eccelston and David Tennant) explained the science (or imagined science) behind even the most complex and bizarre situations – often at lightening speed. Belief was not only easy to suspend it was positively buoyed up by the combination of well-crafted scripts and brilliant performances. Then Davies left and took his beautiful, logical, lightening prose and gave it to Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes (2010 – 2014). Doctor Who has been a tongue-tied, fumble-footed shadow of its former self ever since.

    Most recent case in point – the 2014 Christmas special. The mash-up of Alien/the Thing/Inception/Miracle on 34th Street – self-consciously acknowledged in the leaden dialogue – featured face-hugging dream crabs that drink your brain while placing you in a dream state within a dream state within a dream state. There was no effort made to explain the basic premise of the episode: there are dream crabs – only six of them – on earth – on Christmas day. What are these dream crabs? Where did they come from? Why did they suddenly show up on earth and why did they attack only these six people? None of this is ever explained. The season finale before this special saw the grand villain, Missy, revealed as the Master – in the form of a woman (a sop to those disappointed in the casting of yet another white male Doctor) transferring the consciousness of the newly dead into cybermen (the go-to re-hash threat for the uninspired). How the Master survived his/her apparent destruction several seasons back was never explained. He/she apparently was destroyed this time but who knows – maybe it was all a dream-crab induced fantasy.

    The question is why has the show been allowed to disintegrate to this point? The reason Doctor Who became relevant was because the plots were so strong and the premises were airtight. It stood the test of time because the internal logic was respected. What the show has gained in techno-wizardry it has lost in essential good sense and plausible scientific foundations. It is coasting on the fumes of bizarrely uncritical fan adulation.

    Moffat has offered good scripts in the past under the direction of Davies. Is he stretched too thin as the director and show-runner? Is he farming the scripts out? Or has the show been purposely dumbed down to appeal to a more mainstream (i.e. North American) audience? Perhaps Moffat has been attacked by the mysterious dream crabs and is incapable of writing himself out of the dream state.

    Here’s a new year’s resolution for Steven Moffat that I hope he will take to heart: Hire a serious writing team and bring back the science and logic of Doctor Who.
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  6. Oct 28, 2014
    1
    Can Bobby please appear in the Shower (think Dallas) Maybe this season is just a bad dream and never really happened. I find myselfCan Bobby please appear in the Shower (think Dallas) Maybe this season is just a bad dream and never really happened. I find myself watching each episode hoping to like it, hoping to like Capaldi. I'm sure he's a fantastic actor... but his portrayal of the Doctor is extremely unlikable. I'm re-watching the series from Tennant onward and it was so much more enjoyable to watch those episodes.. The forest episode was the final straw. It used to be so much more fun and exciting... now it's like watching ... trees grow. Expand
  7. Oct 26, 2014
    0
    Just a horrible new cast change. I can't take this show anymore. It is the epitaph of suck. I'll rather watch season 4 of the walking deadJust a horrible new cast change. I can't take this show anymore. It is the epitaph of suck. I'll rather watch season 4 of the walking dead over this pile of human fermented feces. Expand

See all 72 User Reviews