Well, Steven Moffat, you’ve done it again. I’m not just talking about, well, what happened with Clara.
It’s worth starting with her. Jenna-Louise Coleman’s witty Cockney barmaid may well be an old stock character popped into an unusual setting, but she nevertheless has great scene presence and well… to say more would be spoiling things.
Matt Smith was great as usual, especially once he was fully back to Doctoring. While three minor characters from “A Good Man Goes to War” might not be obvious choices to bring back, they had some great lines, especially Strax – and their presence was really needed.
Richard E Grant and Ian McKellen’s turns as the main villains of the piece were great; they both have great voices and the former great facial expressions. Moffat’s decision to make this story a sequel-prequel to two Troughton ones was spotted by me pretty early on and is one of the more inspired gifts to the fans that he’s had.
New theme tune and title sequence? The theme will grow on me I expect (it’s better than the old one and reminiscent of the first Gold theme), while the title sequence is certainly visually spectacular – the Doctor’s face returning will be welcomed by many.
Also like the new TARDIS console, although the loss of the multi-levelness of the old one is a shame.
A highly enjoyable festive episode that sets up a big mystery for the latter half of Season 33.