What a way to kick off Peter Capaldi’s last series as the Doctor!

The episode is a blend of calm introduction, overwhelmingly witty banter, and adventurous action rolled into one episode cleverly named “The Pilot”. Obviously, the reference was to our human turned monster Heather, who tragically was caught by a mysterious “puddle” which then formed her into a water-like monster who keeps chasing our new companion Bill. Played brilliantly by Pearl Mackie, Bill is the first character from the LGBTQ community to openly admit being a lesbian in the Doctor Who series.

The episode opens with an introduction of the Doctor’s other assistant Nardole, played by Matt Lucas. Lucas previously appeared in the 2015 and 2016 Christmas Specials. He stumbles through bringing Bill into the Doctor’s office, which is part of the Doctor’s disguise as a professor at a university. The Doctor enters, asking Bill why she attends his lectures yet she’s not a student. He offers to tutor her, which she accepts and months go on without a hitch.

We are introduced to Heather, a student who has a particular eye defect in which the iris is shaped like a star. Bill takes a liking to Heather who invites her to see quite an unusual puddle. The unusalness about it is that Bill’s reflection is exact to how she looks and not reflective as science dictates. The mystery continues when Heather suddenly disappears.

Bill wanders to a mysterious passage where she hears the Doctor and Nardole talking and wanders in to find them standing in front of a large door which is the entrance to what the Doctor calls The Vault. Bill nearly gets caught before slipping away still unaware of who is really tutoring her.

She meets Heather again at the puddle. This is where the episode finally starts to reach its climax. Bill asks Heather to wait until she can come around the fence, telling Heather to promise not to leave. Heather promises and Bill goes around out of view. When Bill arrives at the puddle, Heather is gone again because she’s been taken into the puddle without Bill’s knowledge. An annoyed Bill leaves and discusses the matter with the Doctor who goes to investigate with Bill. He deduces what the puddle really is, but leaves abruptly giving Bill the night off which confuses her.

Bill returns to her apartment where she’s attacked by monster form of Heather drenched in what looks like water. She runs to the Doctor for help while Heather chases her. The monster forces Bill and the Doctor into the TARDIS. It’s the classic moment of a person’s first time in the TARDIS, but it takes Bill awhile to quote the classic phrase “bigger on the inside”.

Traveling across time and space , the Doctor explains the situation to Bill where they finally make a stand against Heather in the midst of a Dalek war zone. Nardole is particularly funny in where he’s running interference for the Doctor to provide distractions. In this moment, we see Bill’s nature for compassion shine through as it’s revealed the monster chased her to take her with her. All because of Heather’s promise to not leave until Bill arrived at the puddle. A heartfelt moment is shared before the creature leaves and Bil, the Doctor, and Nardole return to Earth.

The Doctor wants to erase Bill’s memory but Bill protests and she prevails as the Doctor chooses to take her in the TARDIS for a journey as his companion.

It’s the perfect buildup of calm to action. Peter Capaldi and Pearl Mackie are showing their chemistry together is flourishing and they have a memorable run ahead this series.

Stay tuned to MFST for more on Series 10 of Doctor Who, and follow Dillon Davis-Tirado on Twitter @thedavistirado for more as well.

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