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8 September 2014

Robot Of Sherwood. Series 8 - Episode Three

If you could go anywhere in time and space, which period would you choose? For Clara Oswald, the answer is simple. Sherwood Forest, 1190.
The Doctor not believing that Robin, is anything other than the stuff of legends, soon finds himself up against the Sheriff of Nottingham, robot Knights and Robin Hood himself.

Robin Hood and Doctor Who-od. Well I thought it was funny.
If Robin Earl of Loxley, aka Robin Hood, were a real person as portrayed in this episode, there would be countless men, women and children up and down the country, who would suddenly have the urge to pick up a sharp weapon and beat the spleen out of his still warm carcass.
I'm not sure who was most annoyed by all the hearty "ha ha hazzahs" thrown about by Robin and his Merry Men, me, or the Doctor. But at a push, I'd say me.

Look at that face. Someone hand me a baseball bat!

Robot of Sherwood  sees the TARDIS land in the middle of Sherwood Forest, in the year 1190 and centres  around the Sheriff of Nottingham's plan to conquer the world, with the aide of his Robot Knights (and their spaceship). And also on the Doctor's plan to prove that Robin Hood is a mystical character and therefore doesn't really exist, with a suggestion that they may be part of a miniscope. A nod back to Pertwee's Carnival of Monsters.

We're then introduced to the band of Merry Men, whom the Timelord is utterly convinced doesn't exist either, as he goes about collecting hair and blood sample. Meet Marion who is taken away by the sheriff to work in an underground slave mine, where gold is being processed to enable the space ship to fly. (Destination, The Promise Land) And Clara having to intervene between the endless child-like squabbles between the Doctor  and Robin.

There's some swordplay and witty banter. Swordplay with a spoon and witty banter whilst sword playing with spoon. Being captured and witty banter whilst being captured. Then some actual sword play in which they you see where I'm going with this? I'm not saying that this particular episode was bad, it was just that it was almost like watching a pantomime. From the sword fights to the endless bantering, (just stab him for goodness sake!) it all seemed like one cliche after another. Ben Miller was excellent as the Sheriff of Nottingham and the scenes between him and Clara were very funny.

Sheriff - "Eat my lady, eat. Let it not be said that the Sheriff of Nottingham is a poor host".

Clara refusing - "Had a bag of crisps this morning".

The Sheriff explaining his plan to take over from King John...

 Sheriff - ..."For Nottingham is not enough. After this, Derby then Lincoln, And after Lincoln..."

 Clara "Worksop?"

Sheriff - "The world!"

Ben Miller as the Sheriff of Nottingham, or is that William Shakespeare?
Overall, I thought this was an okay episode, though there were a few things that had me thinking. One point that had me almost spitting out  a mouthful of Cadbury Pot Of Joy white chocolate buttons, was how was one golden arrow, able to boost the power of an entire spaceship? Also, where is and what is The Promise Land? Did Robin Hood actually exist, or was he indeed a robot? Also, a scene in which the Sheriff is beheaded and revealed to be a robot, was edited out at that last minute, out of respect for the American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff. Some have argued that the omission has changed the overall plot. But I personally think for those who didn't know about the cut, the story didn't suffer from that fact at all.
Capaldi still continues to impress and is so far, proving himself to be worthy of the title 'Doctor.'

Robot of Sherwood


  1. Hang on Robot Knights . . . Surely it is not that long ago i did my own story about the origins of the word Android and the creation of the robot knights Templar back in the days when men were men and stuff like that. If you link that to my own spaceship and Alien stories, then all I can say is some sneaky script writer has nicked a load of ideas from my blog. Well I am not happy about that one bit Master Meglos. I think next time you see a Time Lord I think you need to tell them to think up their own ideas not get rich on mine, thats not fair.

    I seemed to type think a lot there I think. . . . HAH AH HAH AH ha Ah haha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

    Well done and as always say hello to you know who. . . NO its no good shaking your head because it will only end in a lack of chocolate Buttons as I suspect Miss Lily has the money....

    And swords are no more than Pointy Sticks and I write loads about Pointy Sticks too

    1. Rob, you need to patent your ideas so that that Steven Moffat doesn't steal anymore of them for future Who episodes. Or i have a cunning plan. Let Moffat steal your creations and then sue him, making tons of money in the process.

  2. The Sheriff of Nottingham reminded me of Anthony Ainley. I don't know if that was what Ben Miller was going for, but I swear that every time he would monologue I was reminded of Ainley's Master. Not saying he was playing a Master in disguise role, but I kept getting glimpses of Logopolis/Castrovalva. Then again it could have been a bad batch of brussel sprouts that I had eaten earlier.

    1. That's quite funny David, because I thought the same thing. He had the theatrics of Roger Delgado but after a while, I could definitely see Ainley in both looks and character. Spooky.

    2. No one will be Delgado, but it would be nice if Capaldi could have a Master similar to Pertwee's.

    3. Delgado is THE Master. No one could do 'calmly psychotic' quite like him.