I'm really, really impressed. I never thought I'd say that about Doctor Who, but there we are. Impressed. And not just because John Simm is forever made of win and awesome (although he is.)
One of the things I always adore in television, but that you don't see enough of, is the importance of actions, relics, things that seem like they're throwaway comments, or only vital in their first context, having relevance later on. I admire and appreciate that form of storytelling - one that builds and reconstructs. I strive to recreate that in my own writing. So when those elements all came together in "Utopia", I was punching the air. I probably would have preferred a lack of flashbacks, but I understand that they're needed for a wider audience who doesn't take the trouble to memorise trivial details like, you know, fans do.
But it wasn't just that component that made this episode so great for me. Although, I'll admit, a huge part of it was that. (And this is, of course, why I have grown to love Farscape.) No, I also liked all of those little character interaction moments that made it feel less like I was watching a cleverly constructed web and more like an accurate representation of humanity. Well, as accurate as you get with high concept fantasy fiction.
The relationship between Ten and Jack was totally fascinating and really nicely played by David Tennant and John Barrowman. Derek Jacobi, who is always excellent, was just wonderful as both 'the Professor' and the Master. The parallel between Martha and Chantho was, perhaps, not very subtle, but I liked it. There was also Ten's arrogance, which, well - I find it incredibly amusing.
And then we have John Simm, who, as previously stated, is forever made of win and awesome. I haven't felt this gleeful since... oh, for a long, long time. John! ♥ Okay, yes, losing coherency now, but I adore when he changes acting style. You may have noticed, pretty much all of my favourite actors can do both subtle and over the top. And because he does subtle so well, John is an absolute delight when he's Totally. Hamming. It. Up. GLEE! WANTON, WANTON GLEE!
Bwahaha. My geeky heart is more than a little happy right now.