My Top 10 Doctor Who Stories of 2018

Top 10 Who 2018

Last year The War Master took the top spot, a story that didn’t even feature The Doctor at all… This year? Well… It may not be as different as I’d have hoped, especially given 10 new TV episodes and some good offerings from Big Finish that don’t feature Derek Jacobi, but….

Top 10 Who 2018 10

The Mind Runners / The Demon Rises is a great little story to kick off our list. The setting isn’t very original and the modulated voices can get annoying, but the actual story is great fun and the lead villain, The Shift, is, as I put in my review, like a Marvel comics villain arriving in the middle of the Blade Runner-like Neo-noir city. Good fun. (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 9

The final two stories of the first Ravenous set, World of Damnation / Sweet Salvation does two things very right: it sets up the rest of the series by teasing the Ravenous themselves (who sadly weren’t that great when they were finally revealed in the next set…) and, somehow, giving us a great version of the Kandyman… Plus lots of running around and more of The Eleven! A good mix indeed. (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 8

While elements of this story weren’t very original, I loved the use of the 80s Cybermen, plus the continued story of UNIT officer Daniel Hopkins was interesting, dark, and lead to a relatively new idea for something to do with Cybermen, which is a rare one nowadays. Throw in a “world is ending” threat, and you’ve got a good story, and a great Cyberman one. (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 7

Ignoring the massive coincidence that as soon as The Doctor became a female she happened to meet one of the most important figures in American female rights, Rosa is a good story. It tackles the period without holding anything back, and made sure Rosa stood up on her own, rather than it being anything to do with The Doctor or her companions. Bravo. (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 6

Warlock’s Cross isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but I really enjoyed it. It was far more slower paced and cerebral, with an older and weary Doctor, plus  the continued tragedy of Daniel Hopkins. Klein was perhaps underused, but it was still nice to hear her back after all this time. Recommended, if you’re in the mood for a different kind of Who… (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 5

Big Finish steps in as the TV series misses out on their own Christmas Special and gives us a real treat. Better Watch Out / Fairytale of Salzburg was a properly great story, and a very fun Christmas tale to boot, involving the Krampus and old Saint Nick himself… literally. It’s almost a shame that it takes place in the middle of the second Ravenous boxset, because this deserves to be listened to on its own by as many people as possible… (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 4

It Takes You Away took me by surprise, given the general tone of Series 11 I didn’t see a “makes you think”, high-concept story coming at all. The story features inter-dimensional realms, lost loved ones and a sentient universe, it all gets very weird, but never boring. It gets some slack from people because of an intentionally surreal scene towards the end has some unfortunately poor effects going for it, but that didn’t take away from the unique story it told, for me anyway… (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 3

Gallifrey – Time War Volume 1 is at #3, but solely for the middle two episodes, “Soldier Obscura” and “The Devil You Know”. One deals with Ace and even, seemingly (hopefully because it was great!) gives her an actual send off and possibly even explains her fate as listed by Sarah Jane Smith in Russell T. Davies’ spin-off, and the other has a great story featuring Leela and the War Master, who can’t help but constantly appear on these lists, apparently. The other two episodes were fine and all, but the middle two were properly great stories. (My review of the set can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 2

The third and final Thirteenth Doctor story to appear on the list, the second historical-based one, Demons of the Punjab blew me away by telling a fair and extremely mature story set in the very unpleasant Partition of India. The plain human drama on display was nearly ruined by the presence of aliens, but even they were soon revealed not to be villains at all. No, the only villains in this story were scared and confused humans who thought they were doing the right thing for their country… (My review can be found HERE)

Top 10 Who 2018 1

*sigh*… yeah, it’s happened again. My #1 Doctor Who story of the year is once again the War Master boxset. The Master of Callous is written like a novel, the setting, the characters, and stakes, they’re all slowly build up over 4+ hours, the War Master is perfectly manipulative and just once again perfectly played, and even the Ood are written in a really interesting way. Demons of the Punjab may have told a closer, more personal story, but Master of Callous told a sweeping space epic with extremely good writing and acting. That’s two boxes in the War Master series, and two #1 spots… should be interesting, given the over-load of Big Finish coming next year (thanks to their license anniversary) and the lack of TV Who, if it can make it three in a row…

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