But let’s focus on Closing Time first of all, an episode that sees the Doctor reunited with Craig Owens (James Corden) and investigating some strange goings on…
It’s a downbeat Doctor we see for most of the episode, now aware that things are heading in only one direction – his impending death in Utah. Which might explain this:
In the last few days of his life, the Doctor pays a farewell visit to his old friend Craig, and encounters a mystery, as the time-travelling drama continues.
People are going missing, a silver rat scuttles in the shadows of a department store, and somewhere close by the Cybermen are waiting…
Has 200 years passed already? We don’t know, and to be honest you don’t really find out. As ever, our spoilers are of the completely non-spoilery kind, but what I will tell you about Closing Time is this:
Gareth Roberts (who wrote The Lodger) once again does a great job of providing the two leads with great dialogue and it is a joy to see Corden reprising Craig, for whom life has moved on. He’s now living with Sophie (Daisy Haggard) in their own home and it is her absence into which the Doctor slides, once again taking over but this time in a very different way (although that depends who you ask…).
The episode has heart; it is warm, amusing and entertaining throughout with some brilliant lines that play on something we learned earlier in Series 6. Matt Smith is brilliant, too, in both action scenes and in reflecting the sadness and age of the Doctor.
Ultimately, as both a companion-lite episode and a prelude to the events of The Wedding of River Song, you won’t want to miss Closing Time, if only for the stunning Next Week trailer…
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is all you get.
First up, the trailer:
The BBC America trailer:
Here’s some behind the scenes of Matt and James Corden:
What you really want now is the gallery, right?
And yes, that is TV legend Lynda Baron, formerly of The Gunfighters in 1966, Enlightenment in 1983 and of course classic comedy Open All Hours!
Closing Time airs this Saturday at 7.10 pm on BBC One and 9/8c on BBC America. Once you’re done and before BBC Confidential starts on BBC Three, head over to the BBC’s Official Doctor Who website for the finale prequel/prologue.