Jan 022015

One of the better things about the new series of Doctor Who are the Christmas episodes. I will be the first to admit that the quality has varied from year to year, but I had hopes for this one as I really love Peter Capaldi as the Doctor. Plus, this episode had Nick Frost as Santa, which had some interesting possibilities. I loved Frost in Spaced and the movies he’s made with Simon Pegg (except for Paul). So how did this Christmas¬† episode of Doctor Who fare? Find out in our Doctor Who Last Christmas review.

To begin with, I got a bad feeling with Last Christmas when I saw it was written by Steven Moffat. I think his quality of writing has been abysmal for the last few seasons and that it’s time that he moved on from the show. Still, I’m always willing to give the show a chance and soldiered on. The episode begins with Clara going out on her roof after hearing a crash. What she sees is pretty amazing: two elves bickering, a gruff Santa, and flying reindeer. Before you can say boo, the Doctor appears and whisks her away to a research base where something strange is going on.

Doctor Who Last Christmas

The four researchers at the base are trying to figure out how to remove some creatures off the faces of their comrades. These scenes are straight out of Alien (a point that one of the researchers mentions later on) and are effectively done. We quickly learn that the creatures are Dream Crabs that put their victim into a pleasant dream while they liquefy and eat the brain. Eventually, they realize that all of them are in a dream and must find a way out.

I have to say that Last Christmas is probably the best Christmas episode so far for Doctor Who. It has a very tight script that has some twists and turns, but everything falls into a logical pattern. Nick Frost was tremendous as a bad-ass Santa Claus and his two elves were hysterical as they accused everybody of racism for pointing out that they’re elves. The Dream Crabs are just as creepy as the face-huggers from the Alien movies, and the scenes where they open so that you can see the victim’s face is really chilling. I was worried for a bit about the rationale for having Santa in the story, but the fact that everybody is sharing a dream is a good explanation for his appearance.

The episode also allowed the Doctor and Clara to tell the truth to one another. The Doctor has not found Gallifrey and Clara told him about the death of Danny Pink. It was pretty heartrending to see Pink doing what he needed to do (push Clara to saving herself) by helping her leave him and the dream state that created his memory. The episode did tweak me when you thought that Clara had aged over sixty years. A lot of rumors had flown around that she was leaving the show, but this is definitely not the case. In the end, she joins the Doctor again on his travels.

Doctor Who Last Christmas

Overall, my Doctor Who Last Christmas review is a hearty thumbs-up. Once you knew what was actually going on, everything made sense (an unusual circumstance for a Moffat script!). I loved how the entire dream was pulled together when one of the victims looked down at her Christmas list and two of the entries were to watch Alien and The Thing From Another World, thus explaining the horrific Dream Crabs. This episode was the highlight of a very weak season that was due to the low quality of the writing and not the superb performances of Capaldi. My final score is a solid A.

  One Response to “Doctor Who Last Christmas Review”

  1. The Tardis = : |

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