Sleep No More
Episode / March 7, 2016

Aired 14 November 2015 Following the superb Zygon two-parter before it, ‘Sleep No More’ was always going to be in a tenuous position in terms of reception simply due to its placement. In a series that, as a whole, has been exceedingly good and definitely benefited from the expanded time for storytelling, ‘Sleep No More’ comes as something of an oddity since it is the first standalone story of this run as well. What follows is one of the boldest episodes of Doctor Who yet, though the end result is certainly far from perfect. It’s immediately clear that this episode is going to be something unique as guest star Reece Shearsmith addresses the camera directly and the usual theme song is replaced simply by computer text. Writer Mark Gatiss then spins what can be classified as a found-footage episode, events shown only through living characters’ experiences or through Shearsmith’s video diary recordings. And so the Doctor and Clara arrive on the thirty-eighth century space station Le Verrier, meeting up with a rescue mission trying to figure out why the station went silent twenty-four hours previously. What ‘Sleep No More’ does well, though, as any science fiction programme does, is offer…