Written by: Steven Moffat
Directed by: Douglas Mackinnon
Reviewed by Owen Bush for The Gallifrey Times
The Gallifrey Times have seen Listen and have put our spoiler free preview together.
Doctor Who has always showcased its creativity when it comes down to episode themes. We can go from a humorous fairtytale to a dark sci-fi without ruining the shows morals, Listen takes advantage of all these themes and ultimately mixes them together to create an unstoppable fourth episode.
Ultimately, Listen will be an episode that is remembered until the very end of Doctor Who. The episode dives into subjects that will cause divides in opinions, but nevertheless, the episode will be in many people’s Top 10 episodes of Doctor Who. We’re thrown into a mixture of events in the episode, with topics from all of time and space featuring in the episode. It’s a modern episode, with hints of the past, this is what engaged me whilst watching and consequently made the episode feel like it went on for longer than 50 minutes. The episode sits perfectly in Capaldi’s era, although his darker personality and dry humour, it’s his deeper feelings that guide this episode into being a (near) perfect episode.
Clara, yet again, improves as a companion during Listen, she controls situations well and is incredibly intelligent in the episode. We also see more of her home life (or, should I say, date life), we understand her character as a person (rather than companion) more. In addition, in my opinion, this episode personally highlights the fact Clara is one of the best companions we’ve had and Jenna Coleman’s acting is incredible for the tone of the episode. Furthermore, Samuel Anderson as Danny Pink is also superb and Danny is definitely welcome in the world of Doctor Who.
Peter Capaldi also shines throughout the episode, his Doctor is gradually becoming a favourite, and the scenes with him alone in the TARDIS show the talent he has. This is another great part of the episode, the time we have with The Doctor and his TARDIS alone, it adds to the great darkness that is how lonely our favourite Time-Lord really is. Listen features moments that fans have been dying to see, and Moffat writes these scenes into the story in the most perfect way. The hype about Listen is definitely worth it.
Although the episode is a highly loved favourite of mine, it has does still have some minor flaws. Unfortunately, there are some scenes and moments which you may recognise from previous episodes. Many will recall these moments and frown upon the episode because of this. Although re-using old material may be a flaw, they’re implemented into Listen in a way that makes them seem completely original.
Overall, Listen is undoubtedly one the most beautiful episodes Doctor Who has had. It’s packed with epic moments that you’ll remember for a long time. The famous Capaldi humour is still there and fits perfectly throughout the episode. However, some ideas have been used before causing you to compare the episode to other fan favourites. Ultimately this does not matter, as the ideas are used in an original way. Listen is an episode we will never forget, and could be a massive Series 8 favourite.
Thanks to the BBC for providing a preview of this episode.