Steven Moffat’s Series Eight Episode Guide
Deep Breath: “It’s a huge introductory show. What if your best friend was somebody else? It’s really about Clara trying to cope with that - and whether or not she even likes who he is, mixed in with a truly terrifying monster.”
2. “We’ve done a really good Dalek one by saying they’re nasty. It’s actually quite a gritty Dalek adventure. We go without question into the most dangerous place in the universe - the last place the Doctor should be, and you will know that by the end of the pre-titles.”
3. It’s the Doctor meets Robin Hood. And it’s about being a hero. The Doctor’s going through a period of his life where he’s worrying about whether he counts as a good man. It’s very, very funny. Everything you want in a good Robin Hood is going to be there.”
4. “A complete departure for me in terms of writing Doctor Who. A tiny guest cast, no CGI. It’s the story of a date and the Doctor having what appears to be a mild nervous breakdown. There’s a little germ of Coupling in it. It’s actually quite a scary one. I sometimes wonder: “What does the Doctor do when there’s nothing going on? Does he go and find something to poke a stick at?” Of course he must. Essentially it’s downtime for the Doctor. But don’t worry, it involves a monster.”
5. “It’s like a heist movie done with Doctor Who. It’s got a cracking monster in it, one of Neill Gorton’s finest creations. And Keeley Hawes.”
6. “An absolute hoot of an episode with some surprisingly serious bits in it. If you did know somebody like the Doctor and you did think it was okay to slip away with him, what effect would that have on your life? What would that do to the people around you? I sit and watch this one to cheer myself up. I suppose it’s not unlike The Lodger in certain respects.”
7. “Proper drama. With monsters and all the Doctor Who stuff that you could want. It’s probably quite a big statement of where we are now with the show. This might be where you can argue that the new approach is, for the first time, seen uncluttered by any of the old approach. It’s very strong. And there’s a callback to a past episode. Sort of. You’ll see.”
8. “Brilliant script. Brilliant idea for a monster. It looks stunning in a very glamorous way. And it has Foxes singing. There’s a callback to something from Matt’s first series. Sometimes I play a long game. And sometimes I just think “We never actually tied that off…shall we just go and sort that now?” Usually because I think it would be incredibly funny. I like the idea that the Doctor takes that long. “Yes, I’ll be there in a moment…” Several years later…”
9. “It’s a horror story. It starts off with a very …. idea and becomes really quite frightening by the end. A scary one. A proper scary one with one of our best ever sight gags in it. It runs throughout the episode and the climax of this particular gag, I think, is just glorious. I remember reading it out at the readthrough and everyone was just clapping and cheering at Jamie Mathieson’s idea.”
10. It’s a beautiful script; it’s really lyrical and poetic, and boldly so. A fairytale, but not in the sense that I’ve tended to write a fairytale. Heartfelt, eloquent, quite, quite different. The main visual idea is so clever. I think it’s going to be a stunner.
11-12.”The finale. Quite a strong emotional story to this. It’s about Clara and the Doctor and the fact that the way they interact might not be healthy for everyone around them. That sounds very bleak but don’t worry, there’s lots of nonsense in it too. It’s high octane action adventure, with Cybermen. And some proper UNIT stuff.”
This appears to be from a current issue of SFX by the way, in case anyone’s wondering, because I sure as hell was.
This all sounds amazing. And it’s the greatest kind of spoiler too - drawing on themes and atmosphere rather than giving away a lot of the plot.