The Doctor Who Christmas Special has been a tradition for me ever since I started watching Doctor Who. Unfortunately for me, the last (and only) really good one was A Christmas Carol back in 2010. The rest have had major flaws, from not being that well written to not having good characters to even barely being about Christmas at all. So, this year’s special has finally aired! Does it have the same problems? Is it super good or a super waste of time? Let’s take a look at The Return of Doctor Mysterio.
The Doctor, through some shenanigans, ends up accidentally giving a kid named Grant superpowers. Many years later, Grant has become a superhero called the Ghost. His day job is as a nanny taking care of the baby of the love of his life, who happens to be a reporter interested in the Ghost. Let’s just cut to the chase. It’s a Superman parody/homage that doesn’t really work and just so happens to have the Doctor and aliens in it.
Ugh. I wanted so desperately to like this special. The premise of a Superman homage on Doctor Who is a good one. But the problem here is that the Doctor was a side character, a guest in his own show. Honestly, this felt like a “Doctor-lite” episode, meaning the Doctor was barely in it. That’s not necessarily a bad thing as there have been awesome Doctor-lite episodes (like “Blink” from season 3). However, this one had a huge problem with its bland, boring plot and horrible, cliched characters.
Grant was an insert for Clark Kent. No, scratch that. Grant was just Clark Kent down to the stupid thing where he wears glasses. He didn’t have his own character, he was just a ripoff. Lucy Fletcher, the love interest, wasn’t just a ripoff of Lois Lane. She was an ANNOYING ripoff of Lois Lane. She was a reporter who gets information by squeaking a toy to annoy the person she’s interrogating. No, really. She is THAT annoying. I have nothing else to say about these people. They were nothing characters that were just carbon copies of other characters.
Two more grievances: First, this just didn’t feel like a Doctor Who episode. Besides the fact that the Doctor was barely in it, the alien shenanigans were barely even a part of the overall plot. It made the whole thing feel slow and boring. Second, outside of the opening scene, what the blue blazes did this have to do with CHRISTMAS? You know, CHRISTMAS, the whole damn REASON for this to be a CHRISTMAS EPISODE. I swear, the show hasn’t done an actual Christmas centered Christmas Episode in 6 years at least. This is madness and it’s really irritating.
This episode was garbage. I tried defending it to myself, but no. This wasn’t a fun episode, this wasn’t an intriguing episode. It wasn’t a good homage or parody. It wasn’t Christmas related. It was barely even DOCTOR WHO related. This was just garbage. I hated almost everything in it. Just about the only saving grace in it was that the Doctor didn’t once mention Clara. Here’s hoping the upcoming season 10 is leagues better.