Like Clara, Robin Hood is one of my all time favourite characters, whether it was the 1973 Disney portrayal or the more recent BBC series he has always been interesting and exciting. So while I was excited to see him in a Doctor Who episode there was much expectation too.
Overall Tom Riley’s Robin Hood wasn’t the Hood that I love, for me Hood will always be Jonas Armstrong from the 2006 BBC series. I thought there could have been scope for getting Armstrong to appear as Robin Hood as part of some kind of crossover as both shows are made by the BBC but it wasn’t to be. Anyway Riley was good as Hood, a bit more childish than I would have liked but he did well for the purpose of a one off Doctor Who episode. The best thing about this episode though was the exchanges between Hood and The Doctor. Constantly trying to out do each other this provided a lot of comedy and Capaldi put his Doctors character to good use here, bringing back a bit of Matt Smith quirk too by using a spoon rather than a sword to duel Hood. Clara contributes well amongst this ‘bantering’ too and provides some normality and to a certain degree keeps these two ‘heroes’ grounded. Its always good to see Ben Miller too even if he was a little underused.
The story itself was a little flat, not much happened and it all seemed pretty unoriginal. I liked the design of the robots however I thought they were underused as well, they could have been memorable but unfortunately I am already forgetting them. What I did like though was the inclusion of the classic archery competition that has been featured in many of the Hood portrayals in the past, I enjoyed how this was edited to include The Doctor and alien robots, this was pretty good. Again we saw the recurring theme of ‘The Promised Land’, I love a series long theme however I just wish it was a bit more subtle, I am hoping there is something else going on that too that I haven’t picked up on yet! Anyway as a whole the episode wasn’t fantastic, I enjoyed the interactions between the characters and Capaldi shows no sign of slowing down with the bluntness and darkness of his Doctor, which I am loving. To add to this I am already warming to the new theme tune too and next weeks episode ‘Listen’ looks like it could be special. Here’s hoping for the best episode of the series so far!
Rating – 7/10