After two episodes that served as introduction–first to our new Doctor and then to the reimagined Clara–it was time for a romp. Moffat loves these “comic” episodes which border on disastrously silly. But unlike the wilder romps of Series 6, or the downright bizarre episodes like Dinosaurs on a Spaceship, this one was blessed with a coherent plot. Furthermore, it continued what seems to be a theme this season, of the Doctor making peace with the character the reboot has made him.
The Doctor: “I don’t need a sword. Because I am the Doctor. And this is my spoon.”
The most important part of this episode is that it was working hard to make you laugh. Even when things went off the rails, or the ongoing sexism of the show reared its head, the best thing to do was just that: Laugh. Laugh at the silliness of the costumes, laugh at the absurdity of Robin Hood and his cliché band. Laugh because the moment you start to get annoyed at how silly this is, the Doctor announces “This is getting silly.” Laugh at the obviousness of the only other character to be wearing a bright color outside of our leads and Robin Hood and Co turned out to be Maid Marian. Of course she was.