Duodecim! Ave atque vale!

This week Whovian Leap reacts to “Twice Upon a Time” (and tries to remember his Latin!)

Over an hour has passed since Peter Capaldi’s Doctor burst into flames, launching Jodie phoenix-like into the Whoniverse. I’m still a bit too excited to write a review, so tonight’s offering is little more than a stream of consciousness. (And just for fun try and guess the meaning of the title in Latin!)

David Bradley swept me away. Right from his CGI morph, I felt as if I was actually watching the First Doctor. All those worries about him being portrayed as a sexist faded away as I realised his non-PC comments were just mere moments of comic frivolity.

Mark Gatiss played his part charmingly. The Captain was a truly loveable and honourable old fashioned English gentleman. Many of his scenes brought a lump to the throat, especially the final ones with that epic reveal.

Good old Bill. Maybe she has confirmed herself as Twelve’s definitive companion, no small feat after Clara Oswald. The bond between Bill and Twelve seems so natural, so spontaneous and quite simply fun. There is lightness of touch in their relationship and it is such a shame that Bill didn’t get to do two series with the Doctor. Like Caroline John and Ian Marter, Pearl Mackie leaves us wanting more.

The plot was easy to follow. It was a gentle, emotional tale which built up to its inevitable dramatic climax. The story’s simplicity was a relief for me personally – I was watching with my father, who always complains quite vocally when he doesn’t understand the Moffatesque twists and turns of a tale. Shame then that he fell asleep for the middle of the episode due to excess Christmas fare.

Peter Capaldi. What can I say? He owned the show tonight, despite tough competition from the rest of the cast. He has given us comedy and tragedy this evening with an unforgettably dramatic and tear-jerking performance at the end.

And Jodie! Well, less is more – and the little I saw I liked! Her facial expressions and the delivery of her lines were perfect for me. And nostalgically, as the tale ‘spun’ to an end I was reminded of the closing scenes of “The War Games”. Quite fitting as the series heads towards a brand new era.

Tonight, yet again – and as tradition demands – a regeneration episode makes my fan gene – the Whovian within – come beating and pulsating to the fore. The ultimate proof, as if it were ever needed, of one thing. I will always love Doctor Who… I will never let it go!

(Translation: “Twelve! Hail and farewell!”)

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