Well, Dinosaurs on a Spaceship certainly featured dinosaurs. On a spaceship.
Also, an Egyptian queen, a big game hunter, a small army of Ponds and Mitchell and Webb. But it’s an episode that’s less than the sum of its parts: getting a bunch of characters, and a bunch of story elements, and welding them all together (however slick) is the kind of thing you have to be Quentin Tarantino to get away with.
Having said that, I did like a great many of the parts that made up this story. Even if the last of these new components arrived at the half way mark, leaving it to coast towards a predictable end, overall it kept me entertained. It’s just that like The Curse of the Black Pearl last year, the quality of the preceding story raised the bar. While it didn’t come close to exceeding the number of plot flaws of Asylum of the Daleks it lacked the exhilarating twistiness of its predecessor. On the other hand, it’s probably the most ‘Classic Doctor Who‘ since Chris Chibnall’s two-parter two years ago, if you like that sort of thing. Incidentally, while Chibnall has written some very strong stories both for this and other shows (he’s a veteran showrunner on both sides of the pond, as well as writing for Life on Mars, and he’s got another Doctor Who coming up after next week) I do find the characters he creates oddly difficult to empathise with.
Next week a Doctor Who Western, for the first time in a while, which I am mightily excited about. Not least because it issues from the mighty pen of Toby Whithouse who wrote last year’s superb The God Complex. Looks a bit like that episode of Red Dwarf that won an Emmy, but that’s no bad thing!