Doctor Who series 8 trailer breakdown

Feature Andrew Blair 7/14/2014 at 9:19AM

Andrew finds out what the latest Doctor Who trailer featuring monsters, Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman tells us about series 8...

Sandwiched between the final bouts of Alan Hansen punditry (why couldn’t it be Mark Lawrenson retiring?) the new Doctor Who trailer not only kept Alan Shearer off our screens for a minute, but it also had loads of sounds and images. All the better to send our brains into modes of frenzied speculation and anticipation: Capalday is coming.

The trailer suggests two things: monsters and moodiness. There are Silence-handed flame-wielding staring synth-skins, a robot in a castle (most likely from Mark Gatiss’ episode), a ginger-haired thing that spooks Clara, a woman (possibly Clara) falling through the series eleven title sequence, a horse, some explosions, some other explosions throwing new character Danny Pink off his feet, and yet more explosions wracking the TARDIS.

So far, we’ve seen a lot of intense staring and prophetic utterances from the Twelfth Doctor, as if he’s spending the entire series in ‘I Walk In Eternity’ mode. We’ve yet to see him being funny, and – while we expect it to become a defining feature - it’d be a huge shock if Capaldi’s Doctor maintained the stillness and seriousness we’ve seen from him thus far in the trailers. There is, at least, a slyness about his delivery of the words ‘Be a pal’, and it’d be a surprise if he didn’t say anything pithy while clinging to a console for his life.

Words are one thing though. You came here for the still ‘Alt + PrtSc’ images accompanied by increasingly lateral guesswork didn’t you? Well, here that is. First up, some of the monsters we’re going to be seeing in series eight:

Relax with a good Bok

This creature looks like Robo-Bok. Or possibly Polyphase Avatron on a higher budget – there’s a shower of sparks later that could be the vapour trail from said malicious robot parrot square going UNIT soldiers – and Gareth Roberts is currently adapting The Pirate Planet into a novel. The evidence is overwhelming. It’s almost certainly the long awaited grudge match between the Doctor and an overambitious idea Douglas Adams had in 1978.

According to Wikipedia, incidentally, The Pirate Planet was not only written by Douglas Adams but ‘features some of his humour’.

So now you know.

I’ve seen things, I’ve seen them with my eyes

Slurms McKenzie is presumably saying to the Doctor ‘Very, very foolish words man.’

Also, isn’t it heart-warming to see that – irrespective of species – everyone in the future has the same design of spacesuit?

Invasion of the Dinosaur

Presumably the same beast that can be seen stalking Whitehall at night earlier in the trailer, this prehistoric creature appears to have beaten the Skarasen to the area by roughly eighty years (a guess based partly on the sort of hats the strangely calm people in the foreground are wearing, but mainly because I’m under instruction to try to improve our standing in the important Milliner demographic).

RAMPANT SPECULATION TIME: Is this from the first episode? Could it tie in with Steven Moffat’s wish to have seen dinosaurs in the series five Silurian episode? That would be one explanation for Madame Vastra’s ‘Here we go again’ in the trailer.

(Disclaimer: I haven’t heard, read or seen anything about the content of "Deep Breath," this is all just guesswork based on the trailer).

“Life returns…life prevails…”

My initial reaction on seeing the trailer was ‘Are those grey Daleks?’, but now I think it’s probably just the lighting. For a second though, I was extrapolating a return of the Renegade Daleks and civil war, possibly instigated by Davros. In this trailer, the Daleky voice is definitely Nicholas Briggs, and has a distinctly Imperial quality to it. There is a Dalek flying saucer battle glimpsed in there too.

Ultimately, though, I’m starting to find the Dalek base sound effect more exciting than the Daleks themselves. Possibly its time to give the sound effect more of a central role?

“I’m the Doctor…”

YEAH YOU ARE PETER CAPALDI.

While the Twelfth Doctor could pass for a particularly austere Victorian undertaker, the dialogue in this trailer suggests a few things about this series’ direction. There’s a hint of the Eighties to it, reminiscent of a more measured take on the Sixth Doctor’s initial, deliberately hard-to-warm-to approach, with Clara being thrown by the sudden shift in dynamics from Flailing Man-Child to Gnomic Glowering Champion.

The Doctor is now over two thousand years old, and is reflecting on his mistakes. He says he’s going to do something about it. This could be anything from a Seventh Doctor-style seeking-out-and-conquering his enemies approach, to becoming more clinical and less jovial in order to lessen his errors.

Oswald fears Satan

Look at Capaldi’s fingers subtly arranging themselves into devil horns. An implicit message to impressionable young viewers to worship the glory of Satan, or more simply a message that this series is going to rock, as in the modern term, ‘They rock’?

Into Darkness

Cumberbatch is playing Khan. Calling it now.

Doctor Who returns to BBC One and BBC America on Saturday the 23rd of August.

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