I didn’t review Robot of Sherwood last week because I didn’t have much to say. I thought it was fun episode with a silly ending that had me laughing out loud a couple of times.
The hatred toward it has been over the top. As much I respect and enjoy Grant Watson’s reviews, there’s no way it was the third worst episode in the shows history, it wasn’t even Gatiss’ third worst script for New Who. (Idiots Lantern is terrible, Victory of the Daleks is a wasted concept with an ending that makes Robot look smart and original and the Ice Warrior one is a predictable yawn-fest).
If Robot has done anything it’s showing how the mood and tone of Doctor Who can change so radically from episode to episode. That’s one thing this season has got spot on – dark and gritty followed by comedy romp followed by quiet and spooky and introspective.
And Listen, frankly, was a masterpiece. Rather than malign it by calling it Moffat’s greatest hits, instead it’s a culmination of those things that have always interested Moffat. That is that Doctor Who is at it’s best when the monster is a product of our fears and anxieties and that children are both a victim of this but also the best at dealing with those fears because of their wild eyed curiosity and innocence. And while he might not be innocent, the Doctor has often been compared to a child and so it should be no surprise that what terrifies him is intangible and not entirely rational.
That whole paragraph got away from me. What I’m saying is that I unreservedly loved this episode.