Woah, we’re (kinda) halfway there, whoah, Doc fell over that chair! Get it? Because he’s blind? He can’t see cos he went into space? Nardole is annoyed at him, Bill is thankful and the Doctor can’t see. And of course being unable to see is the perfect time for a book-based adventure. So, what do I anticipate from Extremis?
First of all, for those who don’t know, Extremis is the first episode in a three-part story; there’s some conflict online speculating to how loosely connected these three parts are, but it’s still very much the beginning. Personally, I think that three-part stories are great, as you have a definite beginning, middle and end; much like the most basic form of storytelling. If you’re expecting a lot of action and explosions and whizzes and bangs and explosions, I think you’re much more likely to see that kind of thing either in The Pyramid At The End of The World or the opening half of The Lie of The Land. For all intents and purposes, Extremis should be about setting up the intrigue and putting the characters where they need to be for the remaining two episodes.
It’s no surprise that the Moff decided to keep the Doctor’s blindness either, when you realise the whole episode is based around a book, called the Veritas (I’m not sure why the episode wasn’t called Veritas as opposed to Extremis, but I’m sure we’ll get some answers in the episode). The Veritas is owned by the Catholic Church and, if you’ve seen the released preview clip, you know that the Pope seems to be wanting the Doctor’s help. How either the Pope knows of the Doctor or how Moffat was allowed to involve such a touchy subject as a very real and very large religion in an episode are both unknown. I just hope it pays off and it’s not some gimmick.
One thing that really interests me is if Bill will figure out that the Doctor lied to her about his blindness, and how that might affect their relationship. So far, the Doctor has saved Bill in Oxygen (even though, if you think about it, Nardole is a robot and doesn’t need oxygen, so why didn’t he give her his suit?) and now Bill owes him a debt. The reaction when she realises he lied could be brilliant, if written correctly; we’ll just have to wait and see.
Another aspect of this episode that I’m looking forward to is strangely, more Nardole. I know I said this in my Anticipating Oxygen article last week, but that’s just whet my appetite for Nardole even more. There’s something not quite right about him, and I can’t put my finger on it yet; but any more Nardole is always a welcome addition.
Then of course, there’s Missy. She so fine. After we last saw her at the end of The Witch’s Familiar, I’ve been wondering how she got out of her sticky situation on Skaro. Hopefully we won’t just gloss over it like her “death” in Series 8. Michelle Gomez is always a delight, and from the promotional images, Missy looks more unhinged and mad than ever. I can’t wait to see her.
I’ve realised that if I go in expecting not a great deal from Missy, she will always make me fill with glee, no matter how big or small a part she might play in the narrative. I just can’t wait to see the bitch be back again. And hopefully against Nardole. That would be great.
Overall, I’m really looking forward to Extremis, as it seems to be setting the tone for the rest of Series 10. I expect there’ll be a few twists, turns and surprises, and I personally cannot wait. Roll on Saturday!