written by Justin Prince (@prince_justin)
First off, I have to apologize for how late this review was, busy week... lots of playing Destiny and before I knew it... the new episode is going to air soon. Figured better late than never, especially for this episode.
The overall tone of the episode never really grabbed me, an alien robot war machine is found at the school where Clara Oswald works and the Doctor goes deep undercover to solve the mystery all the while saving humanity from the menacing killer robot.
First, what I dug about the episode persists with what I dub about most of this season; the interactions between the Doctor and Clara. Seeing these two together remind me so much of how Ten was with Donna Noble, he couldn't get away with much around Donna and so far it seems that Clara persists to push the Doctor. More of Clara and Danny's relationship is explored as the Doctor has to come to terms that Clara's dating a soldier.
Going back to this Doctor's disdain for those in uniform, while Eleven didn't seem to mind gun toting military by his side, this Doctor has such a negative view of soldiers that he can't even fathom the idea that Danny is a math teacher and not the PE teacher.
The monster of the week was far from memorable, I'm holding out hope for this Doctor to finally tango with the Cybermen and eventually some iconic characters from Who past. Overall, the episode was by large forgettable, save for more exposition on the mysterious lady in the promised land, I couldn't find myself enjoying it as much as I hoped. Seeing the Doctor face off with the notion that Clara may have picked a mate that doesn't fit with his ideals of a man worthy of his companion is refreshing; his vulnerability especially was a treat to watch, but so much of the episode from the pacing to the lackluster baddie made for an adventure that I don't feel will rank high among the episodes this season... though on the upside he brought back the John Smith name... that was nice.