Magicians Apprentice Review – *Spoilers*

The first episode of the new series hit our screens on Saturday night; it was big, bold, in your face, and I don’t quite know what to make of it. First time I watched it I was overly disappointed, but having watched it again with a more open mind, I’m in the “it was okay” camp. Now this post won’t simply be used to criticise Steven Moffat (maybe another time) but I’ll run you through my thoughts on the episode.

The first few minutes, brilliant. I think we all knew the child in the hand-mine field was going to be Davros, but it was still a shock, and I was hooked. Although this may well have been the high of the episode for me… I did enjoy our early trip around the universe including the Shadow Proclamation, the Maldovarium and Karn, although I don’t think Davros’s ‘henchman’ was quite as scary as he could of been, and I felt the snake like appearance was odd. We learn from him that “Davros knows, Davros remembers”, so Davros was somehow alive. This was probably the most glaring plot hole and my main irritation with the episode/story, why didn’t Davros remember all this any other time that they met throughout the years? And we also haven’t yet been told how he survived… classic Moffat.

We then move to Clara on Earth, still teaching and telling us that Jane Austen was a good kisser (is there a line in the show written by Moffat that doesn’t involve an innuendo, flirting or pure sexual content?). And she is now incredibly badass, even Unit call her directly. This I understand, but I didn’t like the whole Clara taking over as soon as she arrived at the Tower of London. The planes stopping in the sky was a nice touch (although we didn’t need the Russell T Davies cliche news reports) but the big Missy head was unbelievably terrible, even for Moffat, and don’t even get me started on that ridiculous algorithm to find the Doctor… because of course in 1200 years the Doctor has only been on Earth for fun once… I can think of 8 occasions on the spot.

Obviously we now see Missy survived, and Moffat doesn’t even try to bother coming up with a reason this time, which actually I don’t mind too much. The next 5-10 minutes was a little weird; now I think Missy is great and Michelle Gomez is fabulous, but I just think the silliness was a little overdone throughout the episode, and got cringe-worthy at times. The Doctor then finally arrived on a tank in medieval times. Fine by me. But this overall segment was a little long, probably to kill some time, but Capaldi shone throughout.

The trio are then caught up by Davros’s henchman and are transported to Davros’s ‘ship’ and from here the episode did really start to go full throttle again. The Doctor is taken to Davros whilst Missy and Clara are kept in a cell… not for long. Rather miraculously for a Moffat episode we get a few minutes of dialogue without any stupid sexual talk or innuendos and it works brilliantly, as Davros and the Doctor discuss their pasts and Missy realises the gravity “is too perfect” and they must be on a planet, I really did like that. And it wasn’t just any planet, but Skaro… I loved that. I hope we do get an explanation as to how the planet survived, but I won’t be too fussed if Moffat doesn’t tell us, he probably won’t.

The episode then ends on one hell of a cliffhanger! After seeing the Daleks “EXTERMINATE” Missy, Clara and even the Tardis (we know they aren’t really) we then see the Doctor back with the little boy ready to kill him. This presumably happens in the second episode as he currently doesn’t have his Tardis, and surely even for Moffat, having the Doctor kill a child would be too dark, not to mention change the whole course of 50 years of Who as the Daleks wouldn’t have even existed.

It’s hard to see how this one will end, obviously with everyone involved living in some respect. Although this episode was okay, the second parter does need to be amazing for me to be overly wowed and from spoiler free reviews I’ve seen, it might just well do… 7/10.


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