I have to say, I think last night's Doctor Who Christmas Special may just be my favorite yet. It's certainly my favorite in the new era of Steven Moffat. While "A Christmas Carol" (2010) and "The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe (2011)" made for fine television--well-scripted, heartwarming, and thrilling in some parts--I was about ready to get back to a more traditional Doctor Who plot with a nasty villain, plenty of scary and mysterious happenings, and lots of running around from place to place. "The Snowmen" delivered on all these counts ("That's the way to do it!"), and I was quite pleased by the return of The Great Intelligence. I don't consider it merely a gift to fanboys and fangirls when the current production team draws on monsters from Classic Who for story material. I think it's completely appropriate that Moffat and Company make use of Doctor Who's established mythology on a regular basis, reinterpreting and reintroducing that mythology for the current generation of Who-Watchers.
Then, of course, there's Clara. Beautiful, exciting, mysterious Clara.
Who is she? Where does she come from? Why is she exhibiting symptons of Rory Williams Syndrome, dying and dying again? I have no idea, and, for the moment anyway, I like having no idea. All I would humbly ask is that, whatever the answer to her riddle turns out to be, we know it by the end of the next season. I'm not sure if I can handle another multiyear story-arc just yet (although I will if the showrunner forces me to).
I do have one small concern: Commander Strax. Just to circle back for a moment to the idea of reinterpreting Doctor Who mythology, the Sontarans were never lovable in the Classic series. To me, their potato-like heads were like some grotesque mockery of a human being's, rather than something to be laughed at, and their cruel warrior's culture was sadistic and callous, not comical. So I hope the producers will find a way to remind people that Strax (whose appearances I admit I have enjoyed) is the exception, not the rule. SONTAR-HA!