The Return of Doctor Mysterio is now just two days away, and the Special has been screened to several critics and fansites who have shared their opinions on the episode. You can read a round-up of the previews so far below!
Click on the links in the titles for the full reviews. All are spoiler-free, but if you don’t want to hear any specifics, don’t click!
I really enjoyed this. There are one or two sweet little moments that may not quite work for everyone, but they do fit the story, and the season. Plus, I laughed an awful lot, and found myself drawn into an adventure that’s as close to standalone as you’re going to get from a Doctor Who Christmas special.
It’s not a perfect episode… but overall it’s a surprisingly heartfelt, funny and entertaining hour of television (albeit not a very Christmassy one) from a premise that seemed like an odd choice when it was first announced.
“The Return of Doctor Mysterio’ somehow… works. More than that, it’s a little bit brilliant.”
It does, however, keep the tone as light as we would want for post-dinner viewing – and is packed with enough witty one-liners and slightly bumbling action sequences to keep non-fans happy.
It’s fast paced, cramming a lot into just an hour, with some fairly gruesome special effects and a gruff-voiced superhero. Funny and silly, it’s a romp – it’s Christmas and kids are going to love it.
It’s somewhat inevitable that after such a long time away this year’s one and only Doctor Who episode can’t possibly live up to expectations, and hype from other media outlets. But judged simply as a lighter one-off special, it’s an entertaining hour with enough heart to make it perfectly passable until the next long wait for Series 10…
This is ideal holiday fare and should keep the less ardent members of the family entertained too, as well as whetting fannish appetites for Series 10 with the customary series teaser, including some more glimpse of Pearl Mackie’s Bill.
The good news is that this hour long special very much reaffirms the core nature of the programme, presents us with a considerably lighter version of Peter Capaldi’s incarnation, and has a lot of fun with witty dialogue laughing with (rather than at) the current superhero genre.
What follows is a rip-roaring comic book caper filled with tongue-in-cheek humour and super-heroic action. It’s an adventure where the impossible feels achievable, woven into a tale as magical as it is superhuman. By the end of the hour, you’ll truly believe a man can fly…
It looks a little cheap in places (especially considering how great the Arrowverse makes small screen superheroics look on similarly tight budgets), the alien invasion plot is as flimsy as a paper chain and the Ghost’s superhero costume is downright corny, but there’s a charming human tale at the heart of this, a few good creepy moments and a great performance from Peter Capaldi.