Ok, so, to be more detailed (and anyone can skip this if they like);
I still think Chibnall is a very average scifi writer. This was very average scifi and very derivative too.
I don’t concern myself much with originality; everything has been done, many times before. However I AM concerned with delivery.
For my money, the Doctor’s amnesia has been done before and done better (Tennant’s first episode had lots of fun with it) and the Predator-esque (ripoff) Tim Shaw (a joke that almost worked, I don’t want to get too down on it but it did, almost, work) and even the disbelieving humans were not what they could’ve been if written by someone who writes scifi better.
Everyone in the cast was better than the material. Right now the new Doctor is not a person, to me, she’s an actress finding the bits she wants to use, and which they will write for her to use, in the future. I’ve seen her in better written roles (even ‘Attack the Block’ where she’s very much in support, was a better defined role) and I think she will find her feet and be pretty amazing in the long run.
But not yet. This wasn’t her being amazing. It was an experienced actress doing what she could with what she had.
I’m totally onboard with what Gar said. This was a family show. Tonally it was dark, but not too dark to scare off kids (different from scaring them) and simple enough (a tad too simple for me) for kids to get the idea and follow the plot without a crib sheet.
Parents, grandparents, school friends (grown up) and brothers trying to find lost sisters. All of that was well chosen.
I didn’t love it, there’s lots I didn’t even like, but it has potential.
My opinion for years is that Chibnall means well but hasn’t the ability to back it up. I still think that.
But I HOPE future episodes prove me wrong.