Critic Consensus: With a stellar guest-star performance by Maisie Williams, "The Girl Who Died" sets thrillingly high stakes, while still maintaining the playful tone we've come to expect from Peter Capaldi's incarnation of Doctor Who.
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Critic reviews for The Girl Who Died
"The Girl Who Died" is the show doing historical episodes as they're meant to be done. It's like "Fires of Pompeii," "Robin of Sherwood" and classic Third Doctor adventure "The Time Warrior" all mixed into one -- literally -- electrifying episode.
The attack and battle sequence zipped through at speed. If it felt a little rushed it didn't hugely matter, as it was clearly setting up for a bigger second half.
Maisie Williams is, of course, terrific. If her character hadn't worked, the episode would have fallen apart, but Ashildr is hugely likeable. She's fierce, but not one-dimensionally angry, brave but not unafraid.
Understanding the bigger picture is simply thrilling. It's incredible when other seasons and Doctors connect this way.
The Viking girl's story plays nicely into the bigger thematic arc of this season as well, as the Doctor and Clara contemplate the constraints of being a Time Lord... of, as he puts it, being able to do anything but not being allowed to.
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