Doctor Who Review: Series 8 - Episode 12 - Death In Heaven


Copyright Stuart Manning and RadioTimes. 

The Episode

Clara and The Doctor are seperated, with Clara having to pretend to be the Time Lord to pro-long her life, without the Cybermen killing her. Luckily, Cyber-Danny rescues her from the other Cybermen and takes her to a graveyard where she watches as dead-bodies rise from the ground in their "upgraded" Cyber forms. Meanwhile, The Doctor and Missy are taken by UNIT onto a plane, where the Doctor is informed he is "President Of The World" and whatever he says goes. Soon, Missy has killed Osgood (who appeared in The Day Of The Doctor) and is blowing up the plane. As this happens, she teleports back to the Nethesphere where she kills Seb. 

With the plane exploding we see a James Bond style fall from the Doctor as he calls his TARDIS and goes to find Clara and Cyber-Danny who wants to stop feeling emotion. The Doctor reluctantly gives Clara his sonic scredriver to do this. Soon, Missy appears and her Cyber-horde are ready to march into battle. However, they're not for her. In a cruel twist she hands the Doctor the power of the Cybermen and tells him to do what he wants. As has been a theme this series, he is briefly seen as the General - but he choses to use this power for good, as he instructs all the Cybermen to rise into the sky and blow up the cloud that is waiting to rain even more Cyber-genes onto the World. With this, comes the desicion that he must kill Missy but, just in time, the Cyber-form of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart shoots her. "Of course. The Earth's darkest hour. Where else would you be," the Doctor says. And then, he gives a rare salute in memory and in thanks. 

At the very end of the episode, the Doctor and Clara meet in a Cafe and lie to each other. The Doctor saying he's found Gallifrey, and Clara saying Danny's still alive. They part, and then Father Christmas arrives......

The Review

Wow. What an episode! Not only did we receive a bumper long hour edition of Doctor Who, but we also went on a real roller-coaster, which left me feeling emotionally drained! I've seen a lot of people saying that they really didn't like it. I agree to some extent, because I don't think it was as good as last weeks, Dark Water. But, I think it was a properly cinematic episode, that was a worthy series finale for what has been such a good one. 

As I said for the first part of this episode, the acting was top notch here. In fact, I can't think of a single character that isn't worth a mention, due to the sheer awesome quality of every character's performance. I can't pick out of the cast who was the best, and that really says something. But, maybe some of the credit should go to the man who penned the episode; Steven Moffat - I salute you. Although I wasn't a fan of the writing when Matt Smith was driving the TARDIS, this series has shown us all that you can deliver every week. Thank you for a greatly written episode. 

Having said that, I'm not completely sure the ending did the rest of the episode justice. It took me a little while to understand the vibe they were going for, that each character was lying to be nice to the other, and to end on a high note. (Quick aside, I would have thought Clara would have wanted to see Gallifrey?) That and I really wish Missy had been saved for an episode on her own (there's still time I suppose) rather than a pairing with the Cybermen, where any evil villain could have taken her place made the comeback of the Master feel a little pointless. Saying that, it was a great reveal last week and did make for some great viewing, all I'm saying is that I would like a more Master/Missy-centric episode to showcase the talent there. 

In no way am I saying I didn't like the Cybermen in the episode either. I thought they were awesome, and it was a great fit for the story, which can sometimes be a problem with this particular villain I fell, as they can be hard to get just right. 

Possibly me favourite moment of the episode was when the Cyber-Brigadier shot Missy (did he really though?) That really brought a tear to my eye, and I thought was a really touching tribute to the character and Nicholas Courtney, who sadly died in 2011, never getting to reprise his character in the new series (except for a small cameo in The Sarah Jane Adventures). 

Special mention has to go to the behind the scenes team, who did a terrific job. The music, directing, on screen effects and everything was really awesome! 

Only the slightly strange ending, and the fact we didn't have an episode with just Missy put this below last week's. 


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