I was really looking forward to this episode as it was written by one of my favourite television writers, Mark Gatiss. With Gatiss at the helm, I knew the episode would be full of comedy and horror! This is the first episode of this series not to be entirely written by Steven Moffat, and it was witty and fast paced from the offset. If you’re familiar with Gatiss’ other works, the episode was easily recognisable as being written by him.
With the legend of Robin Hood as the backdrop for this instalment, the Doctor and Clara find themselves caught up in one of the Sherriff of Nottingham’s plans. The Doctor doesn’t believe Robin Hood is real, while Clara does. Peter Capaldi portrays the Doctor as being somewhat rude to people in this episode; the Doctor clearly doesn’t like Robin Hood, and believes he and Clara should just leave – but, a mystery wets the Doctor’s appetite.
Going to a pageant held by the Sheriff of Nottingham gets the Doctor thinking there is more going on around Sherwood forest than meets the eye, and the Sheriff of Nottingham himself is tied up in the mystery. The story-line is good, but in some places it may appear too fast paced.
So far it seems this season has no two part story episodes, which is unusual as a lot of the previous seasons did spread some of the more exciting adventure over two episodes. Also, the plan this season is t0 continuously broadcast all 12 episodes, instead of splitting the series into two parts, like had been done with the whole of Matt Smith’s tenure as the Doctor.
It does seem that Clara is becoming more comfortable with the new Doctor in this episode. There have been mixed reviews of Peter Capaldi’s portrayal of the Doctor. Personally, I would like to see him in the role for a long time; he has the emotional range to play such a complex character as the Doctor. We can clearly see his passion for the role, and it interesting to have an older Doctor right now after seeing a series of younger actors take on the role.