Deconstructing the Doctor: Peter Capaldi & the New Series

doctor who, peter capaldi, twelfth doctor, television


Over at Word & Film, I wrote a bit about how much I'm liking the new series and Peter Capaldi's Doctor, and what's next for series eight:

And what of the Doctor himself? After a slightly uncertain start in "Deep Breath," where the Doctor's drawn-out regeneration recovery hearkened back to David Tennant's Tenth Doctor in "The Christmas Invasion," we've been shown the outline of the full range of Capaldi's Doctor in the three episodes since. "Into the Dalek" wasted no time in pitting Twelve against a rogue Dalek and carving him out a place in the grand tradition of facing off with canon villains, and also immediately painting him as a dark, troubled man. "Robot of Sherwood," on the other hand, showed us the sillier side of the show. It's a goofy episode, inconsequential but enjoyable, and shows the Doctor's less serious side. It's during episodes like this that I still believe the oft-trotted-out line about this being a children's show.

But this past week's episode, "Listen," is a standout, not just of the season but of the rebooted series as a whole. It's one of the most frightening episodes I've seen, up there with "Midnight," "Hide," "The Waters of Mars," and, of course, "Blink." The scariest Doctor Who episodes prey on very primal fears - things that move when you can't see them, water that will kill you if you touch it (let alone drink it), loss of control over your voice and your movements, and now, of course, what it is that lives in the darkness under the bed.

Read the rest here!

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