After a long time we have waited (it seems to have past only 8 months and change from the Christmas special episode, bur for some people they seemed like years), a Doctor Who world tour to promote the new series (with the new Doctor, Peter Capaldi, his companion, Jenna Coleman – Clara Oswald, and the executive producer, Steven Moffat), the first episode of season 8 was broadcast last night. With success: the BBC1 audience between the hours 19:50 and 21:10 was an average of 6.8 millions people with a spike to 7.3 millions. Without including the viewer from other parts of the globe, the ones watching through internet (BBC iPlayer) or the ones that have downloaded the episode from the torrents.
As you have probably expected, the Doctor Who universe changed with Peter Capaldi’s appearance. And the one worried about how he was going to perform his role have no reasons to be afraid: he is an extraordinary Doctor. Even if during a big part of his first episode he is lost in space and time, still suffering the effects of the regeneration that transformed the Matt Smith’s character into the new Time Lord. Or maybe that’s why he is making such a big impression? Anyway, as you have (again) probably expected, Doctor’s relation with Clara, his companion, changed: now he is a new man, that reacts different, and she, a control freak, has some problems with that. His dark side started to emerge, preparing you (at least in some part) for what’s going to happen next. Matt Smith’s surprising cameo at the end of the first episode (the part has been recorded when he still was the Doctor and it was added to the new episode) of series 8 clarified (if it was ever needed) the continuity between Matt and Peter.
The action is happening in Victorian London, where we meet again Madame Vastra and her wife, Jenny Flint, but also the Sontaran commander Strax, a dinosaur and some robots that use human organs as spare parts. You should remember the episode 4 of series 2, The Girl in the Fireplace (20 October 2006), with the robots with clock mechanism from the SS Madame de Pompadour, the spaceship built in the 51 century, that did the same thing. Of course, the Doctor could not stay aside to let them do it, as he could not stay aside back then – even if he changed his face twice and have lived some centuries. Some time ago you were told don’t blink!, now you are told to keep your breath from very similar reasons: to survive, and to survive with all your organs inside your body. And that’s all I can tell you about the action in this episode, for additional details just watch the episode.
Directed by Ben Wheatley, writing credits: Steven Moffat. Cast: Peter Capaldi (The Doctor), Jenna Coleman (Clara Oswald), Catrin Stewart (Jenny Flint), Neve McIntosh (Madame Vastra), Dan Starkey (Strax), Michelle Gomez (Missy).
If you are speculating or guessing who is Missy and why is she calling herself The Gatekeeper of the Nethersphere or why she welcomes people to “Heaven”, well, let’s speculate / guess further. Maybe we’ll find some answers in the next episodes of series 8 that she is Rani / Master / Doctor’s daughter / any other character you can think of.
The next episode is Into the Dalek: a Dalek fleet surrounds a lone rebel ship and only the Doctor can salve them. He is facing his greatest enemy with Clara by his side.