Series 8 of Doctor Who started this weekend, and goodness do I have a lot of feelings about it! This of course marked Peter Capaldi’s official reign as the Doctor, and the first time we got to see Twelve in action. Like I said, I have a lot of feelings, but I’m going to try to keep this relatively brief with a little game of The New/The Old:
The New: The Face
Obviously, Peter Capaldi is the Doctor now. It’s been so long since I’d seen Matt Smith say goodbye that I had to watch his regeneration again to reorient myself. Clara clearly struggled with his new appearance. I’ve been through this twice now, and I could never be as sad as when David Tennant left, so I was ready. Yes, guys, this is an older face than we’ve seen— ever, for most young fans. I happen to really dig the silver fox look, and I’m happy to see them shake things up.
The Old: The Doctor Himself
It’s always interesting to see a new Doctor regeneration— it’s the same character, but always with a slightly different personality. It’s so hard to explain if you don’t understand this show. In this the first episode, Capaldi certainly played the Doctor Smith-like enough for us to definitely see that this is the man we left on the Tardis. It’s clear that Twelve will be darker, and more morally ambiguous, though. I’m definitely looking forward to this! It’s also clear that he’s still incredibly silly. That’s one of the first words that comes out of my mouth when I talk about this show. It’s got to be delightfully silly!
The New: The Tardis Interior
With a new face comes a new Tardis, and I happen to absolutely love this one! It’s a drastic change, but the white interior and the bookshelves are major wins for me.
The Old: Strax still hasn’t learned genders
We can all rest easy, for Strax can call her “Miss Clara” and then “my boy” without missing a beat. He’s such a funny character.
The New: Missy
Who the hell IS she? Why the hell is she calling the Doctor her boyfriend? (Yeah okay, I like his accent too, but what?) What connection does she have to the cyborgs? So many questions!
The Old: The companion
I forgot how much I like Jenna Coleman. She’s so lovely, and Clara’s sense of style is so, so good. Jenna delivered quite the performance in this episode. I loved the episode’s plot line and how fitting the title was. I loved seeing Clara’s struggle and her faith during her, by all accounts, abandonment. I loved her strength in the face of threats despite her humanity and fear showing through. Most of all, I loved that she knew the Doctor had her back and that when she reached back for him, he was there for her.
I’m thinking more now of Twelve as Clara’s Doctor. Though she was with Eleven already, it was basically have a season of episodes. I will always associate Amy with Eleven. I hope Clara will know Twelve the way Amy knew Eleven.
The New: The opening theme.
A new season means a new opening theme sequence! I usually hate this, to be completely honest, but this time I’m so happy about it. I LOVE this new title sequence with the gears and scrolls. It’s sleek and modern, and reminds me a bit of Alice and Wonderland. I love it!
The Old: Questions.
This is old territory for Whovians. I already talked about the Missy questions, and there are many. As for the big question of the episode’s isolated storyline: Did the Doctor push or did the cyborg jump? Will we ever know the answer to this one.
Interestingly, we are left with Eleven calling Clara in the future, while Twelve, his future self, looks on. Why is Twelve so scared? We still know so very little of what mysteries Series 8 will weave and unravel. All and all, I’m excited about everything.
What did you all think of Capaldi’s big debut?!