By Will Barber – Taylor
The Doctor turns bank robber when he is given a task he cannot refuse – to steal from the most dangerous bank in the cosmos. With the help of a beautiful shape-shifter and cyber-augmented gamer, the Doctor and Clara must fight their way past deadly security and come face to face with the fearsome Teller: a creature of terrifying power that can detect guilt.
Time Heist is an odd kettle of fish. It isn’t bad, it isn’t unoriginal or that boring. Yet I don’t want to exactly say it was brilliant. It was good so far in the way that it worked well and functioned well as a script. The only problem with the episode is that it doesn’t exactly feel exciting. It is a good episode and one that I would watch again but it doesn’t really stand out. Something about the episode that is almost indescribable is apparent. It doesn’t have the same click of enjoyability as Robot of Sherwood or Into The Dalek have; this was so much so that my mind began to wander around the middle of Time Heist.
The problem may lie in the fact that a lot of the episode is spent running around. Running from one set piece to another means that there isn’t that much plot because a lot of the time is spent trying to exposit information to the audience while running along and juggling the plot at the same time. It is a bit of a tall order for any writer. Even with these problems the episode is still fairly watchable. If the plot had a quicker pace to it then maybe the running form of exposition would work more effectively.
Peter Capaldi once again shines in this episode. He plays up The Doctor’s comedic side in the opening sequence. His reaching to the washing machine is fantastically timed and his expression to it is a wonder to behold. Capaldi also is great when playing up against the villain of the piece, Miss Delphox played by the brilliant Keeley Hawes. Hawes and Capaldi play off each other excellently and they have a great hero/ villain dynamic.
Hawes vindictive villain is also a great point of the episode. She really enjoys playing the bad character and this means that you root for Capaldi as The Doctor more. Though his Doctor is darker, he isn’t completely morally corrupt as Miss Delphox is; he knows what is right and wrong and though he is pretty callous in this episode, he isn’t as cold as Delphonx.
Interestingly enough, this episode links back to The Doctor’s message at the beginning of the series “I’ve lived for 2,000 years, I’ve made many mistakes”. Delphox makes a similar mistake, something she wants to go back on years later. The irony is though, The Doctor’s change of personality could be seen as the opposite of Delphox, he hardens his approach while Delphox softens it. Delphox realizes that she should not have been so pig headed while The Doctor reacts to his mistakes by making out that everyone is at fault instead of him. This dichotomy of change is interesting to behold and hopefully it will be seen in future episodes.
In summary, Time Heist is a good episode even if it isn’t exactly a stand out story. It has a nice pace and a nice sense of adventure which creates a unique feel to the episode. Hopefully, more episodes of this standard will pop up later in the series.