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I miss Donna a lot.

See, the actual Doctor on the actual TV show really seems to have a problem relating to anyone who doesn't immediately and uncritically become a Doctor fan. This isn't something that just cropped up in the new show- it's really funny to go back and watch the First Doctor having what I can only describe as dick-measuring contests with Ian Chesterton. Liz, famous original Romana, Tegan... the companions who, for whatever reason, don't drink the Kool-Aid are the ones who just don't quite fit in. The Doctor, by all appearances, cannot abide having peers.

I'm going to be citing things from Season Six episodes.



Look, I know the Doctor is an immortal alien and all mere humans are like unto children before him, but emotionally the Doctor only hits adult humanity on his good days, even when he looks all wizened and full of ancient knowledge. So it's no good saying all the companions should regard him with childlike awe. There is a way adults treat other adults, even when those other adults are much more knowledgeable and adept. Mostly, it involves calling people out on their bullshit. And the vast majority of companions don't do that- which is apparently very good for their life expectancy.

(I need to point out that the spinoff material, the audios and such, do a much better job of putting the Doctor in a room with other adults, when he happens to have that sort of companion. But that's what I refer to as the "Burger King cup"- it's ancillary, not the actual show.)

I hit boiling point on this one during "The Girl Who Waited." It's not so much the mere fact that Grim Amy is an eldritch thing that Should Not Be. Only one Amy makes it out. Totally on board with that. But there are two things that really bug me.

They're on a deserted space station that has rooms where time flows at different rates. Yes, it's infested with killer robots, but Grim Amy has been dodging them for decades. It seems like there's all the time in the world to come up with a better solution to the issue, but the Doctor can't be bothered. Instead, he tricks Amy. He lies to Amy, tells her that both versions of her can survive. That's a shitty thing to do to a friend. It's a shitty thing to do to an enemy. And it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

And just to cap it off, we have the scene where he literally slams the TARDIS door in her face and leaves her to die. He might as well have changed the sign on the TARDIS door to read "YOU'RE MAD AT ME BECAUSE OF MY IRRESPONSIBLE BULLSHIT FUCKING UP YOUR LIFE TWICE, AND, SINCE YOU'RE NOT YOUNG AND KITTENY ANYMORE, I CAN'T DEAL. FUCK OFF AND DIE, PRONTO. YOURS IN RASSILON, THE LAST OF THE TIME LORDS."

To be fair, he kind of sort of acknowledges it himself in the next episode, when he tells her she shouldn't have faith in him. And that made me feel better enough that I think I can keep watching Karen Gillan's pretty, pretty hair- er, I mean, the show. But that whole climactic scene- the look on his face that comes off angry as much as guilty, the little moment where it sinks in that he's abandoning her again, and her suicide-by-robot, is just too abusive on his part. (To me. I have abandonment issues; I see Amy's abandonment issues.) And it pairs up in my head with the shitty deal Donna gets at the end of S4.

(I realize that hand-holding is death on TV. Talking through why Amy has to die is not the show the BBC pays for. And Romana II's relationship with the Doctor has a lot to do with the relationship between the actors- it's not like the subtext was intended to be in there. But it is. We watch the show that goes out on the air. And sometimes that show is, to put it charitably, unintentionally rage-inducing.)

I miss Donna. More broadly, I miss companions who will just flat-out dismiss the Doctor's flights of wonderfulness when that's what the situation calls for. And I'm kind of glad Amy's out of the TARDIS for a while.

Date: 2011-10-07 07:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tavella.livejournal.com
I watched one episode after he fucked over Donna, to see if I wanted, or even could, watch the show anymore, and in fact I neither wanted nor could.

Date: 2011-11-03 09:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jairkem.livejournal.com
Excellent post I must say.. Simple but yet interesting and engaging.. Keep up the awesome work!

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January 2012

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