Heaven Sent - Press ReactionBookmark and Share

Sunday, 29 November 2015 - Reported by Marcus
Heaven Sent: The Doctor, as played by Peter Capaldi (Credit: BBC/Simon Ridgway)This item Contains Plot Spoilers

Press reaction to the latest Doctor Who episode, Heaven Sent mainly highlights the solo aspect of the story and the acting ability of the show's main star. An instant classic was the verdict of Radio Times. "This is Peter Capaldi’s hour and he has earned it. OK, the running time is five minutes shy of one hour, but this brilliant, bold, extended episode is a one-man show – a tour de force from the magnificent Capaldi."

The Express agreed. "As a concept it actually worked surprisingly well and Peter Capaldi managed to carry off the whole thing without it feeling too weird. He led us through this adventure, which was an exploration of grief and the fear of death"

The Metro calls the episode an epic one man show. "Capaldi delivers 100%, carrying every scene and showing every facet of his Doctor: anger, terror, playfulness, intensity, resignation and, finally, a fierce refusal to do anything other than do what he has always done: find a way to win."

A mind bending masterpiece is how Digital Spy sums up the story. "One thing's for certain - even after 5 years in the job, showrunner Moffat is refusing to rest on his laurels, switching up not just the show's style but its substance. He's out to prove that you can still do something new with a character that's been around for half a century."

The writing was picked up by AV Club who thought it a perfect episode. "It’s a tour de force for writer Steven Moffat, director Rachel Talalay, and star Peter Capaldi, who is by himself for a good 95 percent of the episode’s running time."

Den of Geek also praised the writer "This is Steven Moffat on very good form. He's being confident and clever with time, without zipping backwards and forwards and asking us to hold on. There’s an inherent trust that the audience is on board with what he’s doing, and – in a recurring theme this series – there's a genuine gamble with format and story.". The Register agreed "It's a terrific episode penned by showrunner Steven Moffat. Season 9 has veered off course once or twice, but over all it's been thoroughly entertaining. And I say this even though those damn sonic sunnies are still being worn by the Doctor."

IGN thought the episode showed the Doctor needed Clara. "It’s telling how empty he is now without her. He’s lost without her, and I’m sure this notion will play into next week’s season finale as well where it looks like the Doctor is out for blood.". While TV.com thought the return to Gallifrey had been underplayed. "The fact that the BBC carelessly revealed in the logline for "Heaven Sent" that the Doctor would be returning to Gallifrey tells me that the folks involved with the show don't think the Time Lords' return was particularly noteworthy. But to me as a fan, it feels a bit like we've been cheated out of a really great story"

Indewire praised the production values "This is a "bottle episode," an episode that takes place entirely in one small space the characters -- or in this case, character - can't get out of. Normally slotted into a series for budget constraints, that's probably not the case here, with a glorious CGI'd castle straight out of "Game of Thrones" and some incredible special effects, but it's deeply claustrophobic and unsettling."

Gamesradar thought it showed the 52 year old series could still have fresh ideas. "Heaven Sent” proves there’s still virgin territory to be explored. It’s refreshingly unlike any episode we’ve seen before."

You can read the Doctor Who News review in our reviews section.