The Time of the Doctor, or Steven Moffat’s Greatest Hits

The last time the Doctor regenerated it was an overwrought affair, very silly, but at least it had a story1.

That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy Matt Smith’s last outing, but it has sadly typified his run as the Time Lord. He’s been brilliant. The episodes themselves, a bit meh. Oh and Clara still barely exists.

We see everything from the last three seasons thrown at the screen here. Weeping Angels, the Silence, Amy Pond’s crack and of course Amy2 herself, as if to remind everyone that Clara still barely exists.

I was already in the camp that didn’t care a whit about the 13 lives for a Time Lord rule3, but since Moffat brought it up here you might expect a proper adventure that raises the issue of the Doctor’s impending mortality, some struggle to arrive at the inevitable situation where the Doctor cheats death again. Instead, Clara asks the Time Lords and they give him another cycle, and that’s all that done with. Instead, we miss the 300 years where the Doctor realised his death was coming and apparently accepted it, no problem.

Incidentally, Clara has now saved all the Doctors from the Great Intelligence, and been responsible for his gaining a new cycle of regenerations. In amongst all these achievements could the story gods (well, god) see fit to give her some motivation beyond “I fancy this guy a bit”. She is very quickly falling prey to Martha Jones Syndrome, wherein the writer is still clearly too in love with the previous companion.

  1. Okay, so it had very little of a story. Massive cop-out with Donna as well. And a Lord of the Rings ending. And a Lord of the Rings Ending. And a… you get the picture. But at least we got to see all these events happening. 

  2. In a big wig! What is it with people leaving Doctor Who and shaving their heads? Also, young Amelia was not played by Caitlin Blackwood this time, presumably because she has grown considerably and now looks about a year younger than Karen Gillan. More’s the pity, but the Ponds got a better sendoff before anyway. 

  3. Note: regenerations, and even Time Lords? Not part of the concept at the start of the show. It’s all retcons, baby.