Doctor Who: Series 8 Episode 12 "Finale Part 2: Death in Heaven" (REVIEW)

written by Mackensie Baker (@MackensieBaker)

In the twelfth episode featuring the twelfth Doctor, the second part of the finale, we will see many questions answered and many more that aren't. In the Earth's so-called "blackest hour," the Doctor will be appointed the president of the world, we will see friends and foes alike fall, the army of the dead will save the land of the living, lies shall be told, and there will be death in heaven.

There were a number of great moments in the finale, but there were also a few disappointing and disconcerting ones. First and foremost, there were a lot of extremely unnecessary deaths that I think were just used for the shock value. Casualties of the Master's return, I suppose. Or just Steven Moffat.

Most of my frustration though comes with the way the ending of the episode turned out, barring of course the reference to the Brigadier, which brought tears to my eyes where Danny's demise did not. If I had to pinpoint the lack of realism in Danny Pink's death, I'd have to say it was in the weird cyber-corpse thing they decided to go with. I mean, those prosthetics were just . . . weird. Ugh. Just the memory makes me shudder. It was too predictable for my taste, and I really think they could have gone in a different (better) direction with it. In the end, his sacrifice didn't even feel all that meaningful. However, I do agree with the choice he made at the very end of the episode, righting the wrong that haunted much of his adult life.

Becoming a cyberman did not turn Danny, or any of the victims of Mary Poppins's evil twin, into monsters or mindless soldiers. As usual with cyberman technology, the key lay in the strengths—and weaknesses—of the human heart. However, the motive behind the Mistress's meddling, to give the Doctor the very strange "birthday present" of an army, may be just as characteristically bananas as she'd like us to believe, but I for one am not buying it. There's just no way the Master/Mistress would be written off that easily. And besides, the issue of Gallifrey's hiding place has to be dealt with sooner or later. Perhaps this will be wrapped up in the Christmas special?

So what are we left with? One last goodbye to be had for the Doctor and Clara, the closure that goes with it, and some vague curiosity held out for the fate of the Timelords. It would seem that Clara's story is truly coming to an end, with her human identity quite intact after all (called it). And thus we start on a new chapter with our shiny new Doctor, waiting eagerly for what's to come.