Review: The Snowmen

Xmas 2012WARNING: There may be spoilers below

On Christmas Day, the Doctor Who Christmas Special of Series 7 aired. It featured the return of Matt Smith as the Eleventh Doctor and Jenna-Louise Coleman as … well we’ll see! As most of the episode doesn’t seem to have much to to with the coming story arc, I won’t go through every plot event, instead I’ll just give my thoughts on a couple of things.

First of all, I quite liked the return of Madame Vastra and Jenny. In ‘A Good Man Goes to War’, I must admit that I didn’t really understand their importance and they seemed a little out of place to me. But this time, when we see the Doctor using them to guard himself against other people, I think having the sinister Vastra was a good idea, just to show how anti-social the Doctor has become. Also from ‘ A Good Man Goes to War’, Strax returns in this episode. While I thought he was quite a cheesy character, he did provide some much-needed comic relief to this Christmas episode, such as when the Doctor says, ‘I’m the clever one, you’re to potato one!’.

The villianous snow in this episode was voiced by the frankly rather scary-sounding Sir Ian McKellen (Some fans noted that this is the real Gandalf the White!). He is working through some sort of Victorian businessman, Walter Simeon, played by Richard E. Grant. Unfortunately the storyline today seemed to be juggling so many things today that they forgot to be scary until right at the end, when the snow starts to reanimate Simeon. It was much too short and therefore never had much chance to really be frightening.

But of course the main focus today was Clara Oswin Oswald, played by Jenna-Louise Coleman. This was the episode advertised to be the one where the Doctor meets his new companion, and I think Coleman really merits the role, playing the independent barmaid of this episode very well. Her character’s plot was also done very well, and we really all should have noticed that they were doing the same thing from ‘Asylum’ again, where Clara almost joins the Doctor, before dying. This really leaves the viewer really begging for more, as a modern-day girl, also played by Coleman, visits the grave of our Victorian Clara.

We’ll have to wait for April to see what happens, but in the meantime, tell us what you think! Did you like the episode? How do you think it stacks up against previous Christmas episodes? Personally I like Russell T. Davies’ more cheesy and cheery Christmas specials, but the newer ones do keep you on the edge of your seat!

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