“This has been a cracking series, with the show back to its darkly compelling best and Capaldi – clever, complex and unpredictably otherworldly – making the role truly his own“, said one TV critic after series number eight of ‘Doctor Who’ climaxed this past Saturday night. Peter Capadi was Doctor number 12 and one that will not be forgotten. Read the views from the critics below. Den of Geek’s Simon Brew said the latest episode ‘Death in Heaven’ served as a “fitting conclusion” to both the events set up in ‘Dark Water’ and the entire series. “It feels like Doctor Who has undergone a real resurgence of sorts with him in the Tardis, and his Doctor remains one you can barely keep your eyes off“.
However, The Mirror’s Richard Beech looked back on series eight with mixed feelings, “I still have a weird and slightly confusing longing for Matt Smith, but I’ve accepted he’s gone, and Capaldi is resplendently terrifying and entertaining“, he said. “There were some real dud episodes in the series, but probably no more so than in series seven, which got a bit convoluted. And that’s a big point we should be making. This series was very easy to follow, is that good or bad? Everyone will have a different view on that, but nobody complained about it being confusing“.
The Independent’s Ellen E Jones said that while the finale’s zombie-Cybermen “weren’t scary enough“, Michelle Gomez as Missy was one of its triumphs. “Like Hannibal Lecter in a Mary Poppins outfit, Missy was an unsettling mix of prim and predatory, even while shackled to an upright gurney“. Christopher Campbell, writing for Film School Rejects, agreed. “The female incarnate of the Master is one of the most enjoyable villains I’ve seen in a long time, on television or in the movies. She’s a wicked blend of Bond nemesis and evil Mary Poppins (with a dash of Marilyn Monroe impersonation), and it’s probably for the best that I was left wanting more“.
There was also praise for Jenna Coleman’s portrayal of companion Clara from Digital Spy’s Morgan Jeffery. “She’s been a bit of a revelation these past 12 episodes, with Moffat and his writing team granting Clara all the vim, vigour and personality she was sorely lacking before“, he wrote. He also said series eight had delivered “thoughtful, emotional, stunning episodes” like ‘Listen’, alongside “complete clunkers” like ‘In The Forest of the Night’. “But just as ‘Death in Heaven’ left me mostly satisfied, there’s been enough right with this series to leave me optimistic for Doctor Who’s future. Chief among its selling points has been a fantastic, fascinating lead performance from Peter Capaldi and with the growing pains of this era out of the way, I have a feeling series nine could be something very special indeed“.