TV Review: Doctor Who 8.5 “Time Heist”

Doctor Who
Season 8, Episode 5 “Time Heist”
Directed by Douglas Mackinnon
Written by Stephen Thompson and Steven Moffat
Starring Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman, Keely Hawes, Jonathan Bailey, Pippa Bennett-Warner
BBC America
Air Date: Saturday, September 20th, 2014

We live in a paranoid world. Cameras are everywhere. Identification is regularly scrutinized. Computers in a room somewhere are potentially checking and cross-checking our every move. Some of us are guilty and should be punished swiftly for the benefit of the community by some mysterious organ of the state. We cannot trust anyone, possibly including ourselves. This is the post-9/11 reality that Stephen Thompson and Steven Moffat wish to examine this week on Doctor Who in the episode “Time Heist.”

The result is more a detailed sketch of a great Doctor Who episode than a fully realized work. The premise is interesting. The narrative logic generally holds. The performances are solid. It’s all fine, but nuance is missing. We, the viewers, are given just barely enough at every point to make it all hang together. Greatness is more than the sum of its parts and here things only just barely add up.

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