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ShowDoctor Who / Series 8 / Episode 4
First Broadcast2014/09/14 - 19:40 (Link: ABC Details)
Related LinksDoctor Who Wiki Wikipedia
Previous EpisodeRobot of Sherwood
Next EpisodeTime Heist

This is an incredibly dense episode and will no doubt bear repeated viewing. I'll leave it to others for the detailed synopses and focus on a few key points.

We begin with the Doctor again chalking on blackboards in the TARDIS. He is following a theory about the dream that it seems everyone has about something under the bed grabbing your leg as you get out. This plays out in the end with Clara trying to help a crying boy in a barn. She hides under the bed, unaware of who he is. A couple (the Doctor's guardians?) come to the barn and from what they say she deduces it's the Doctor as a child. Then she grabs his leg and realises that she is the cause of his dream and his fear. Once again Clara has intervened in a key moment of the Doctor's life; she calms his fear and tells him a story of a solider so powerful he doesn't need a weapon. It would seem that Clara had a major influence on the Doctor's destiny in this instance (not just helping him out).

Clara and Danny's story is also explored. Their first date goes badly, despite Clara travelling in time to try and rescue it. We get more hints of the troubled nature of Danny's service. Clara meets Danny as a child and inadvertently sets him on the path to his career as a soldier and his change of name to Dan. We meet a descendant of Dan's and possibly Clara's? And it seems there really is a creature under Danny's bed, but we never or find out what it was. We catch a brief glimpse and it appears that it is not human. This suggests there really is a creature that has perfected hiding (although the possibility was left unresolved at the end of the universe). What then do we make of the Doctor's experience (which was Clara under the bed)? This was not what he thought.

No sign of Missy or The Promised Land again. A completely self-contained episode seemingly outside of the story arc. There's also a clever reference to the The Day of the Doctor as we find out the barn where the War Doctor took the Moment to is the same barn that the Doctor went to for comfort as a child. What's not explained is how the TARDIS took them to Gallifrey during the Doctor's childhood. All up, a very good episode.

Clever reference: when Clara sees herself from behind, she echoes Hermione Granger in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.