Before I get into the review for this week’s episode, I want to go ahead and mention the Doctor Who chat bot that’s available on Skype. It’s an interactive adventure where you and Twelve work together to reassemble the pieces of the Key to Time (although there’s no explanation for how it got disassembled after Four and Romana put it together). You basically get to be the Doctor’s companion. It’s only AI, but it’s the closest most of us will ever get to being a real companion, and for awhile we get to pretend that the Doctor really did tell us we were brilliant (not going to lie, that felt good).
Anyway, this week’s episode saw Bill and her friends renting a house from an extremely sketchy landlord, and it turns out the walls eat people (considering this is the same house where Sally and Larry encountered the Weeping Angels in “Blink”, I’m not too surprised at the weird things that are happening). And then the Doctor discovers the alien lice that live in the wood of the house, but that’s nothing compared to the secret the Landlord has been keeping for nearly seventy years.
I admit, I got a chuckle out of Bill introducing the Doctor as her grandfather–and the Doctor’s indignation at being considered so old. He had the same complaint in “The Caretaker”, insisting that he and Clara looked the same age. There was a meme that remarked how Twelve must keep forgetting that he doesn’t look like Eleven anymore, and I’m starting to think that’s true.
I’ve always loved David Suchet as Hercule Poirot, and watching him here, I was forced to ask myself, “Why has this man never been the Doctor?” Seriously, he’d be great at it. It’ll probably never happen, but it’s fun to speculate. And I really loved the twist about how he was the son all along, and Eliza was his mother. But how did Eliza forget? I don’t think they really explained that part. Of course, with it being seventy-some years, her memory may have slipped up.
Last week I said I didn’t think the Master was in the vault, but it was probably the Valeyard. This week I take it back; I’m starting to suspect it’s the Master in there. It’s difficult for me to imagine the Doctor being so casual and comfortable around anyone else that dangerous–plus, they implied that the prisoner was interested in the deaths the Doctor encountered during the episode (even though they didn’t really die). That totally strikes me as something the Master would want to hear about.
Next week, the Doctor, Bill, and Nardole face off against deadly spacesuits in “Oxygen”!