Gareth Roberts and Steven Moffat gave us the sixth of twelve episodes of this series of Doctor Who in the form of The Caretaker. With a sideshow of an alien killing mega-robot to contend with, just how would Clara find the time to introduce her boyfriend to the Doctor? Can Coal Hill survive?
Coal Hill has been leaking artron energy and has attracted the attentions of an alien super robot. The Doctor goes undercover to set a trap and sets up a brilliant farce of scenes in which he fails to spot Clara’s boyfriend and makes an enemy of Danny without realising who he is. The reveal comes and both Danny and the Doctor need to re-evaluate their relationships with Clara. The Doctor also begins to build a relationship with one of the pupils, a disruptive influence named Courtney Woods.
The robot gets destroyed, of course, but does allow the introduction of a new gadget – an invisibility watch, soon used to make some of the scenes work in almost Shakespearean fashion. Silly in places this episode had an immense energy and was a real crowd pleaser.
All three main actors were great in this one: Coleman is subject to some great camera work (Paul Murphy’s direction is good in this), Anderson gets to be angry with an authority figure and Capaldi is managing to be more alien than we have been used to in recent years. This Doctor does not get people.
The Danny Pink scene where he tells Clara exactly what he thinks of the superior officer attitude is clever and I hope we learn a lot more of why this Doctor so hates the military. We now have all vestiges of any romantic interest removed and the Doctor is now in a (grand)father/ (grand)daughter relationship once more. Hands up who spotted the River Song reference as well!
The series arc
The arc creeps in, not only by the use of Courtney and Danny’s meeting the Doctor but also with another soul making their way to Paradise. Missy has a companion of her own – just what is going on?