Feast Your Eyes on the New Doctor Who Trailer!

It’s been a while since we’ve had a proper, season-long adventure with the Doctor. Can you believe that season 9 ended in 2015?! But happily, our wait for the new season of Doctor Who is nearly over. Season 10–also known as the first season for Pearl Mackie’s companion, Bill, and Peter Capaldi‘s final season as the Doctor–will start on April 15. From the looks of the trailer, we’re in for a fun season.

Capaldi’s Doctor has been met with some mixed reviews. He was starkly different from Matt Smith‘s Raggedy Man, and fans had a bit of a tough time adjusting to that new dynamic between Clara and the Doctor. However, I personally felt like Capaldi finally settled into his role as the Doctor last season, and I think this new season will be the perfect cherry on top of his tenure as our favorite time traveler from Gallifrey.

But in addition to saying hello to new faces and goodbye to old ones, it looks like this season has a lot of fun in store for us. We, happily, will get to see more of Michelle Gomez as Missy/The Master, Matt Lucas as Nardole, and we’ll also get to see some of our old faves like Daleks and Cybermen (and not just the upgraded Cybermen–this season will kick it old school with the original 1960’s Cybermen), as well as the return of the Ice Monsters.

So even though we’re going to have to say goodbye to yet another Doctor (and potentially a companion, as there is no word on Pearl Mackie’s intentions to stay or go after Capaldi regenerates), this season is shaping up to be one hell of a last ride for Twelve…or Thirteen, depending on how you count the War Doctor. Regardless of where you count him, be sure to set your DVRs for the Doctor Who premiere on April 15th on BBC America!

What do you think of the season 10 trailer? What are you most pumped to see this season? Are you excited to see Peter Capaldi regenerate, or did he win you over? Who do you want to see helm the TARDIS once he’s gone? Tell me in the comments! 

Everyday Cosplay: River Song

I loved this year’s Doctor Who Christmas special, and as always, I was captivated by River Song’s outfits. Seriously, it doesn’t matter what River is doing, girlfriend ALWAYS looks great.

river song

#style

One of her outfits was my particular favorites, and I simply had to create an everyday cosplay look to emulate her look (complete with a bag to store your ex-husband’s head in). Take a peek:

Everyday River Song

 

 

What did you think of River’s style in this year’s special? What is your favorite River song look? Let me know in the comments!

The Rise of the Tragic Christmas Special

Haven’t watched “The Husbands of River Song” just yet? Then be warned…

spoilers

I have mixed feelings about the Doctor Who Christmas specials. Like I’ve said in the past, the episodes are often hit-or-miss for me. Usually they don’t have a regular companion, and the stories don’t play much into the larger storymline of that particular Doctor. Really, that’s the whole point of the special. It’s a fun adventure with the Doctor to help give you some Gallifreyan holiday cheer.

Of course, there’s also another sort of Doctor Who Christmas special, and that’s the special utterly breaks your heart. For the past three years now, we’ve had specials that are quite sad on different levels. We’ve had Eleven’s regeneration, the almost-final episode of Clara (that ended up being Danny Pink’s official, final episode), and this year marked what is likely River Song’s last episode (you never know with River–she’s so timey-wimey it’s not totally unrealistic for us to hope to see her again). Before that, we also had Ten’s regeneration happen over Christmas as well as feels-inducing “The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe” and “The Snowmen”. With Capaldi staring down his third season as the Doctor, rumors are beginning to fly that this may be his last season as our favorite Time Lord, which means we could have another tragic Christmas special in 2o16.

Capaldi

Seriously, can we NOT talk about regeneration? I feel like Capaldi JUST started…

While I get that having a Doctor regenerate in the Christmas special is the easiest option for everyone involved–remember Eccleston regenerated prior to the Christmas special, so Tennant’s first episode was a Christmas special which made the Christmas special a bit tough since he spent a majority of the episode regenerating–it can really put a bit of a dark cloud over the Christmas special. Still, I’ve said before that those MOTW-style Christmas specials often don’t stick with me much past the final credits. Though I HATE re-watching Tennant and Smith’s regeneration episodes, I can’t deny that those are solid episodes. And “Husbands of River Song” and “Last Christmas“? Both of those episodes are sad, but I think those are two of my favorite specials.

We’ve had three years of sad specials, and it looks like we’re in for another next year. So my question is: how do we feel about the rise of the sad Christmas special? It’s no secret that Doctor Who, for all of its silliness and frivolity, can be a bit of a gut-wrencher. For instance: Van Gogh, Bad Wolf Bay, “Angels Take Manhattan”, Melody Pond, Donna-freaking-Noble…this show likes to rip out our hearts on the regular. So a Christmas special that is sad isn’t necessarily an escape from the norm, but does adding that melancholy touch to the special ruin what makes it unique? Should the special simply be a fun adventure that isn’t important to the main timeline, or is it good for big events like companions final episodes and regenerations to happen at Christmas?

When the show had the split-season format, it made a lot more sense for the Christmas special to not offer fans closure on major plot lines from the season. It didn’t matter if anything vital to the season’s story arc addressed, because part two of that season was only a few months away. Closure and big plot events would be handled in the latter half of the season. Now though, the Christmas special is acting a sort of unofficial season finale (even though the episode prior to the special is officially billed as the finale). Since the seasons aren’t split anymore, I think it’s important for the Christmas special to tie in to the main season a bit more.

Certainly this year’s special didn’t have much to do with the events of season nine. Clara’s final episode had already happened, an we hadn’t seen River since the days of Eleven, but I think we all knew this episode was coming at some point since we never saw the Doctor give River a screwdriver. However, I think it was a big deal to have the Doctor bid River what is likely their final farewell, especially since it came on the heels of losing Clara (can we talk about how much I loved the TARDIS trying to cheer the Doctor up by putting hologram antlers on his head?). So while River didn’t directly tie into this season, she’s always a vital part of the Doctor’s story. Taking her to the Singing Towers of Darillium made him think about the people he loves, how he loves and treats those important to him.

I love it that the Christmas specials are getting a bit weightier. While I definitely don’t want every special to be soul-crushing, episodes like this one and “Last Christmas” are great because they’re vitally important to the Doctor’s story as a whole, they contain companions we know and care about, and the adventures aren’t stories to just fill the logbooks of the TARDIS–their stories have an impact that reaches far beyond that particular episode. For instance, did you catch when the Doctor told River the same thing Danny told Clara in the 2014 Christmas special?

Danny Pink

With the re-jiggering of the season’s structure, I think making the Christmas specials pack more of an emotional punch only makes the show stronger as a whole. I still may be on the fence on making us watch the Doctor regenerate on Christmas, but I love that the specials have had stories and characters that reach far beyond the sixty minutes of the special. And if the show runners can give us excellent, non-regeneration specials like “The Husbands of River Song” and “Last Christmas”, I’m definitely on board with more feels-heavy specials.

What did you think of this year’s Christmas special? Are you happy with Christmas specials that are a bit sadder and have more of a tie in to the season’s story line, or do you want the show to go back to the one-off Christmas special style? Let me know what you think in the comments!

Doctor Who on the Big Screen!

Get ready, you guys. Doctor Who is returning to the big screen–in 3D–for a special screening of “Dark Water” and “Death in Heaven“, a special season 9 prequel (called The Doctor’s Meditation), AND an interview with Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman hosted by Wil Wheaton. This two night event is coming to theaters September 15-16, just to get you ready for the season 9 premiere on September 19. Here’s the scoop:

doctor-who-season-8-premiere

BBC Worldwide North America and Fathom Events announce the return of the longest running sci-fi television series, Doctor Who, to the big screen for a two-night special theatrical event, Doctor Who: Dark Water/Death in Heaven in spectacular 3D, starring Peter Capaldi. Doctor Who: Dark Water/Death in Heaven, the show’s two-part eighth season finale, will be presented in RealD™ 3D and Dolby Atmos sound (where available) on September 15 and 16  at 7:30 p.m. (local time). The event will feature The Doctor’s Meditation  – a special prequel scene to the first episode of season nine – and an exclusive interview with Doctor Who stars Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman, hosted by Wil Wheaton (Big Bang Theory, Star Trek: Nemesis), in addition to the two-part season eight finale.

Tickets for Doctor Who: Dark Water/Death in Heaven in 3D can be purchased online beginning Friday, July 31 by visitingwww.FathomEvents.com, or participating theater box offices. Fans throughout the U.S. will be able to enjoy the event in approximately 700 movie theaters through Fathom’s Digital Broadcast Network. For a complete list of theater locations visit the Fathom Events website(theaters and participants are subject to change).

“We love bringing Doctor Who events to theaters and seeing the fans come out in full force,” said Fathom Events VP of Programming Kymberli Frueh. “This time fans get the added excitement of seeing all the action in 3D with exclusive bonus content not available anywhere else.”

“After the enormous success of the 50th Anniversary and season eight premiere – both number one alternative cinema events, two years in a row – we decided to bring the Doctor back to the big screen in 3D so Whovians across the country can have a full immersive experience of Peter Capaldi as the Doctor. The season eight finale, along with an exclusive interview with Peter and Jenna is the perfect way to get fans ready for the upcoming premiere of new season on BBC AMERICA,” said Soumya Sriraman, EVP Film, Home Entertainment, and Licensing for BBC Worldwide North America.

In this epic two-part finale, the Doctor comes face-to-face with the mysterious Missy, and an impossible choice looms. With Cybermen on the streets of London, old friends unite against old enemies, and the Doctor takes to the air in a startling new role.

The new season of Doctor Who premieres Saturday, September 19 on BBC AMERICA.

Are you as excited as I am for Doctor Who season 9? If you haven’t seen the trailer yet, be sure to check it out below!

Will you be going to see Doctor Who on the big screen? What do you think of the new season? Let me know your Whovian thoughts in the comments! 

5 Fandom Friday: Favorite Aliens from Doctor Who

5fandomfriday

This week’s Fandom 5 post is about our favorite aliens in general. I’ll be honest, I found that topic HUGE and a tad bit overwhelming, so I decided to narrow it down slightly. Instead of my favorite aliens out of the whole of time and space, this week I’m going to talk about my five favorite aliens from Doctor Who specifically. Of course, everyone’s favorite alien from the show is the Doctor himself (a Time Lord for those who don’t know his alien race). “My Doctor” is Eleven, a mix of a seven year-old…

Eleven

…and a goofy yet slightly angry old Englishman.

angry bowtie

BUT everyone loves the Doctor. Sure, we all have our favorite Doctors, but we all love him. It’s really just a given for a Whovian to love the Doctor. Because of that, I’m not including him in my list–we all understand that he’s all of our faves.

Eleven Who Da Man

Doctor Who Winner

Alright, calm down, Doctor.

ANYWAY, before the Doctor goes full Time Lord Victorious on us, let’s talk about my five OTHER favorite Whovian aliens.

The Ood

Ood

The Ood are a race of aliens that, if left in the wild, hold their actual brains in their hands. They are all connected with one another in a sort of joint, hive-mind, they tell stories and remember past events with beautiful songs, and they love helping and serving one another. Despite their startling appearance, they are the kindest aliens out there. Their name is also super fun to say and very pun-able.

Good one, Rose.

Good one, Rose.

The Silence

The Silence

Wait…who?

The Weeping Angels

Weeping Angels

These guys are creepily unsettling. They cannot move if you look at them–looking at them literally turns them into stone. However, blink once, and they can move faster than you could ever imagine. They are so powerful that even the image of an angel can become an actual, dangerous angel. If you look at the image of an angel in the eye, they can even enter your actual eye. It’s mildly horrifying, to say the least, but the manner in which an angel kills you is not as cruel as some other aliens–they merely zap you several decades into the past. However, their ability to appear as a normal statue and then zoom about whenever you take your eyes off them is more than a little terrifying. Definitely one of my favorite villainous aliens on Who. They also let to this adorable Nerd HQ moment with Matt Smith:

Are You Scared of Weeping Angels

Now hang on, I’ve got something in my eye…

Madame Vastra, Silurian

vastra

Vastra the Silurian is the clever, Sherlock Holmes-esque friend of the Doctor, living with her human wife, Jenny, in the Victorian era. I know, that’s a lot to take in. But I just really love Vastra and Jenny (if you want to read a Vastra and Jenny novel, check out Devil in the Smoke). Vastra herself is clever, she’s a brilliant fighter, she loves Jenny deeply, and she managed to make a functioning home with a lizard, a human, and a potato butler.

Speaking of a potato butler, may I introduce my fifth favorite Whovian alien:

Strax, Sontaran

strax suggestion 2

Strax is a Sontaran–a race of potato-looking dudes who are always, constantly hellbent on war. Strax was taken by the Doctor and is now the butler to Madame Vastra and Jenny. He does a great job of assisting the two women in their daily lives, but his ideas area for fixing problems are always a bit…unconventional.

Strax Suggestion 1

Still, he means well, and I enjoy him for that–even if his default setting is crazy violence. You know what they say, you can take the Sontaran out of the fight, but you can’t take the fight out of the Sontaran. Or something like that…

Who are some of your favorite Whovian aliens? Let me know in the comments! Be sure to check out my other Fandom 5 posts, and follow the #Fandom5 hashtag to see what everyone else is talking about today! 

Doctor Who Recap: Dark Water

This week marked part one of the series eight finale of Doctor Who, and this was an intense, jam-packed episode. There is a TON to unpack, and even more questions, so let’s talk about some of the big moments of the episode.

Of course, if you’re not caught up with Doctor Who, this is your official spoiler alert.

***

doctor-who-season-8-premiere

The OMIGOSH Moment of the Episode

This entire season we’ve been getting to know Clara’s new boyfriend, Danny. We Danny Pink as a kid, and we even met someone who is supposedly Danny and Clara’s great, great, great (etc, etc) grandson, Orson Pink.

orson pinkI was such a fan of Danny. When a section of Whovians started to balk at Danny’s habit of taking the Doctor to task, I defended Danny. I totally loved Danny. I was so excited to see what would develop between Clara and Danny. So it makes perfect sense that within the first ten minutes of this episode, Danny was killed.

Yep. Danny dies in an incredibly unceremonious fashion at the very beginning of the episode. He walks out into the street while talking to Clara on the phone. She tells him she loves him, and that he is the last person who will ever hear her say that, and then he gets hit by a car and dies. Just like that.

Understandably, this kind of breaks Clara, so she goes to the Doctor, grabs all of his TARDIS keys, and works out a plan to gently persuade the Doctor to go back in time to save Danny. Of course, by “gently persuade” I mean she drugs the Doctor, steals all of his TARDIS keys, and then tosses them into lava each time the Doctor refuses to help her.

clara threat

Of course, the Doctor isn’t so easily bamboozled. It turns out the “sleep patch” Clara thought she had put on the Doctor (which he promptly removed and put on Clara) actually only induced a dream state, and Clara only managed to toss the TARDIS keys onto the floor of the TARDIS, not into lava.

Typical of this new Doctor, his reasons for tricking Clara actually come from a strangely sweet place.

doctor

Of course, once he realizes what happens, he jumps into action. We learned from the episode “Father’s Day” (of the Eccleston era) that going back in time to bring someone back from the dead never ends well. So instead, the Doctor promises to take Clara “wherever Danny is” and get him back.

3W

Unsurprisingly, Danny is in Missy’s “Nethersphere”, run by the 3W corporation (3W = three words). While the Nethersphere has Wi-Fi and iPads (and Steve Jobs, apparently), it seems there is one fatal flaw in the after life: despite being dead, your consciousness is still very much alive, which means you can acutely feel every single thing that happens to your dead body. The three words that gave 3W its name?

Don’t cremate me.

Yikes.

Missy. Freaking Missy.

After using the Doctor’s new psychic-connection-TARDIS-destination-finder to locate Danny, Clara and the Doctor find themselves in the 3W headquarters, which is lined by tanks filled with skeletons–an interesting decor choice. We’re also met by none other than Missy herself.

3w

She first claims to be a sort of “welcoming droid” for 3W, and then…oh, and then we learn her true identity. As several of us had guessed Missy is…

master1 master2 master3

Oh. My. GOSH! I have so many questions…

The Dark Water

I have to admit, it took me WAY too long to get what was up with the Dark Water–even with Cybermen in the episode preview. It took the Doctor saying he felt like he was missing something that was right in front of his face for me to clue in. Even after Dr. Chang explains the skeletons are sitting in a substance called Dark Water–a liquid that keeps bystanders from seeing anything but organic material within the water, like this:

dark water

I should have been suspicious, but I wasn’t. Of course, after Missy reveals her true identity, the Dark Water begins to drain from the tanks, revealing the skeletons to actually be Cybermen. Not only that, but the 3W headquarters isn’t in some strange, far-off place, but in the middle of London. So you know, this is not great.

The Nethersphere

With the new found knowledge of the Cybermen being involved, it totally changes Danny’s experiences in the afterlife. The Cybermen and 3W are actually uploading people to a sort of “shared drive”–also known as or The Matrix, Gallifrey-style–while the Cyberman use their bodies for their new army. So, of course, it makes it interesting that the inhabitants of the Nethersphere can still feel pain, since the Cybermen are all about “upgrading” humans to delete things like feeling pain and emotions. It also makes sense that the three words of 3W are “don’t cremate me”. You can’t use a body to fill the suit of a cyberman if he’s a pile of ash. They just need to get rid of the “human” portion, and they’re good to go. Of course, in the final moments of the episode, Danny is presented with the choice to do just that, delete everything that makes him feel pain, and delete everything that makes him the Danny we all love.

So while this episode finally answered the question Who Is Missy?, it replaced it with about 300 other questions. Unfortunately, because next week is the season finale, I have a pretty strong feeling that we aren’t going to be getting all of our questions answered next week. What did you think of the episode? What did you think of Missy’s real identity? How about Danny’s death? Let me know in the comments!

Doctor Who Recap: Kill the Moon

If you aren’t caught up on Who, this is your official warning:
spoilersAlso, be sure to check out my recap of “Time Heist” and my defense of Danny Pink in “The Caretaker“.

KTM

In this week’s episode of Doctor Who, Clara, the Doctor, and Clara’s student, Courtney, head to the moon. Why the moon? Clara confronts the Doctor after learning he told her student, Courtney, she wasn’t special. Clara asks the Doctor to tell Courtney she is, in fact, special. Of course, the Doctor decides that he’d rather just take her to the moon, saying, “First woman on the moon special enough for you?” I guess that’s easier than just saying, “I was wrong, you’re special,” right?

well

Of course, once they arrive, things aren’t great on the moon. It turns out there is already a team of astronauts on the moon because it is infested with giant, awful, space spiders, and even worse: the moon is actually breaking apart. Why? Well, it turns out the moon is actually an egg incubating a giant space creature that is finally ready to hatch.

moon

So, the decision must be made to either destroy the creature within the moon, keeping the moon in tact, but basically turning it into a giant sarcophagus, or allow the creature to burst out of the moon and see what happens to the earth–Is the planet destroyed without its moon? Does the space creature zoom down and destroy the earth? Or is everything okay, and nothing catastrophic happens?

In a rare move, the Doctor decides to leave the planet, allowing Clara, Courtney, and the surviving member of the astronaut team to decide the fate of the planet and the space creature on their own. Ultimately, Clara decides to save the creature, who is born, flies away happily, and lays another egg in the sky.

new moon

Good one, Doctor.

Whew, right? Well, not so much. Clara realizes the Doctor must have known something about the future of mankind and the creature in the moon when he left Clara, Courtney, and the astronaut to their own devices, so she demands the Doctor tells her what he knew.

clara smackWhen he admits he knew the creature would be born safely, and that humanity would be okay, Clara feels a bit betrayed and patronized.  The Doctor put her in a position where she had to make an impossible choice, and he left her alone, telling her it was time to take the training wheels off and let her take ownership of her own planet. Yet, all the while, the Doctor knew everything would be okay–he knew Clara would save the creature and earth would survive. He left her alone not because it was a choice she had to make, but because he wanted her to feel like she made it on her own.

In short? Clara felt completely played by the Doctor. She felt, as she said, “lumped in with the rest of the little humans” the Doctor think are so, “tiny and silly and predictable”.

Okay, here’s the thing about the Doctor. First off, he doesn’t think humans are tiny and silly.

important

In fact, the last time someone said humans must look insignificant to the Doctor, he responded by saying:

giantsHere’s the thing though: Ten said this not too long before he regenerated. In this moment, Ten knew he was reaching either the end of his life, or the end of his tenth regeneration. A few episodes prior to this moment, before he accepted his impending end, the Doctor said this when he did the big time travel no-no and disrupted a fixed point in time:

time lord victoriousThe Doctor is old. The Doctor is alone. The Doctor is also pretty powerful and very clever. Getting a big head can probably be quite easy for a guy like the Doctor.

I think we never saw Eleven get this big-headed because of what he learned after calling himself “Time Lord Victorious”. In fact, Eleven seemed pretty ready to accept his death when he was at Trenzalore…that is, until the Time Lords let him regenerate. We still aren’t clear if that regeneration was just an extra life, another thirteen regenerations, or an unlimited supply. Regardless, beating one’s inevitable end can make a guy feel a bit bulletproof, and a bit haughty.

I’ve really enjoyed getting to know Twelve this season, I truly have, but in the transition from Smith to Capaldi, we’ve lost a bit of the silliness and good-nature of the Eleventh Doctor.

huggingAnd really, that’s okay. Whovians are used to getting a new “type” of Doctor after a regeneration, but more and more over the past few episodes, the Doctor has moved from “rougher around the edges than Eleven” back to the Time Lord Victorious version of the Doctor. Leaving his friend alone to face an impossible choice without his help or support simply because he can? That kind of goes against the basic rules the Doctor bases all of his action upon:

oath

But like I said, the Doctor is old, the Doctor is powerful, and the Doctor is clever. It doesn’t take too much for him to get a dangerously huge sense of himself, which is why he has a companion. Travelling alone is when the Doctor spins out of control, and anyone who knows the Doctor knows how important it is that he has a companion.

travel alone

After all, Ten declared himself Time Lord Victorious after he was forced to say goodbye to his final companion, Donna. Thankfully, Twelve isn’t alone, which is good because right now, the Doctor’s morality is a bit off kilter. I think he genuinely had himself convinced he was helping Clara by leaving her alone on the moon, and I think he genuinely found no problem with pushing Clara as far as he did. But that’s why he has companions. To smack him back into sense, and to let him know–even if they let him get away with quite a bit for quite a long time like Clara has–that he can’t do whatever he wants whenever he wants.

Ending the episode with this…

clara mono2…was a heavy way to go, but at the same time, I was proud of Clara for standing up for herself. Her character development this season has been so exciting now that she’s beyond the “Impossible Girl” story line. Sure, she may have been “born to save the Doctor”, but her story is far from finished. The Doctor needs Clara more than ever right now, and we’ve known from the start of the Capaldi era that the Doctor is trying to figure out if he is actually a good man.

good man

We don’t know how much time will pass for the Doctor between Clara telling him to clear off and his next interaction with her. In next week’s episode preview, Clara was noticeably absent. My suspicion is we’ll see her again at the very end of next week’s episode similar to Eleven’s “The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe” episode, but we’ll see. I highly doubt he’ll be without her for too long, as I’m pretty sure Clara’s words will be buzzing too loudly in his head for him to stay away.

What did you think of “Kill the Moon”? Did you think Clara was out of line or right on the money when she yelled at the Doctor? When do you think we’ll see Clara again? Let me know in the comments!

Finally, here’s the preview for next week’s episode, “Mummy on the Orient Express”, in case you haven’t seen it:

In Defense of Danny Pink

If you aren’t caught up with Doctor Who, be warned, because:

spoilersAlso, if you haven’t checked it out yet, you can read my recap of “Time Heist” here.

Here’s a quick and dirty summation of the plot for “The Caretaker” via IMDB: The terrifying Skovox Blitzer is ready to destroy all humanity – but worse, and any second now, Danny Pink and the Doctor are going to meet. 

Though there was an impending alien threat–and at Clara’s school, no less–the heart of the episode came from Clara and the Doctor, and the Doctor finally meeting Danny. As I was watching and live-tweeting Saturday’s episode (follow me @Kendall_Ashley for future live-tweeting fun), I was really taken aback at all of the hatred I saw against Danny Pink. Honestly, I have been a fan of Danny since we met him, and “The Caretaker” really only solidified my feelings for him. So I was kind of surprised when I heard the outcry from some corners of the Who world. Because of this, I would like to present to you my case for Danny Pink:

We’ve known from the start Danny’s past as a soldier would absolutely cause tension with the Doctor:

soldier rule

doctor soldier

The Doctor has never been a big fan of the military, but Twelve has a special distaste for them. I think a lot of that stems from guilt about his own past. Remember the last time he was called “soldier”at Demon’s Run after Rory and Amy realize their baby is gone?

soldier
It was here that River warned the Doctor to stop travelling down the violent path he was on, saying his actions were changing the meaning of “doctor” from a wise man and healer to a mighty warrior. Ever since that time, especially after being allowed a second chance at Trenzalore, I think the Doctor has tried to stay as far away from “soldiering” as he possibly could.

So back to “The Caretaker”. We all know the Doctor was well aware of Clara’s crush on him during his eleventh regeneration. So when, at the start of the episode, the Doctor first walked around Clara’s school and wrongly assumed Clara was dating this guy (aka: Matt Smith’s doppelganger):

doctor-ganger

I think the Doctor was happy about the pairing not only because it was a bit flattering for him…

dashing…but I think he also liked the idea of Clara dating a safer “version” of himself. One who was human, who would stay in one place and in one body, and one who didn’t carry the destruction of an entire race on his shoulders. Sure, he wouldn’t be perfect, but Adrian-The-Eleven-Doppelganger would be safer and better for Clara than the Doctor. Of course, pairing his companions with a safer version of himself is something he’s done before:

doctor too

However with Danny, I think the Doctor sees far too much of himself in Danny, and that scares him. The Doctor is rude to Danny the entire episode…

leave us alone

…and he belittles Danny’s intelligence from their first introduction…

stupid school…because the Doctor sees Danny as dangerous. He was a soldier. He killed people, and he’s far too similar to the Doctor himself to be a good match for Clara. What’s more, when Danny first meets the Doctor as the Doctor and not the school’s caretaker, Danny can sense that the Doctor is just as much of a soldier as he is. I think the Doctor is a tad threatened by that–I mean look at the Doctor’s face in this gif:

officer

While Clara isn’t afraid to call out the Doctor, sometimes she lets him get away with a lot. Danny, on the other hand, is clearly not going to take any crap from the Doctor. Does that make him a bit abrasive at times? Maybe, but I think a good companion is one that isn’t afraid to tell the Doctor when he’s wrong. While Clara and Amy were/are always quick to call the Doctor out, I don’t think we’ve had a companion like Danny, ready to argue with the Doctor at the drop of the hat, since Donna Noble.

donna noble

Ultimately, the Doctor knows it is likely that if Clara falls in love with someone, the time will come where she will have to pick between her partner and the Doctor. Going by history, the Doctor knows that Clara would pick her partner, much like one of his other companions faced with the Doctor vs. Partner dilemma:

ponds

I think he knows his companions should pick their partner over him, despite how much it hurts him. However, he fears that very choice is in their future, so he wants to be sure that Clara spends the rest of her days with someone who is truly good for her. Because he sees similarities to himself in Danny, the Doctor is being quite cautious in truly accepting Danny–which we see at the end of the episode when Danny explains to Clara that the Doctor is angry with him just in case he isn’t good enough for Clara.

As for me, I think Danny is great. He’s tough, he’s not afraid to stand up for himself, he truly cares for Clara, and he’s delightfully awkward with a penchant for the headdesk.

headdeskSure, he was a soldier, but so was the Doctor. Danny can be a bit rough around the edges, but honestly, have you met Twelve?

get lostI think it is good he will be there to help reign the Doctor in, and I think he is a good match for Clara. More than being former soldiers, I think what Danny and the Doctor really share is a sense of regret for past violence, and a genuine concern for other people. Sure, Danny calls the Doctor out, but I think that’s good because the Doctor isn’t always right. Danny is committed to Clara, and he ultimately is only concerned with her being safe and honest with him. I think those are excellent qualities in a boyfriend. As a companion, the Doctor needs people who can be his friend, and people who can call him out and challenge him. I think Clara and Danny will bring that dynamic to the TARDIS.

Let’s just hope they stay away from Weeping Angels, amirite?

goodbye

Two Reasons I Think We’ve Already Seen Twelve on Doctor Who

The New Doctor is Almost Here!

With Peter Capaldi taking the reigns of The Doctor in just one short (long?) day, it seems charitable to offer showrunner Stephen Moffat a couple of options by which he can explain the prior appearance of Peter Capaldi on the show.   Many a Whovian are aware of Peter Capaldi’s role in “The Fires of Pompeii” as the Caecilius, the sculptor/merchant who purchased the TARDIS from under the Doctor’s nose (his own nose?). It must be explained!

Moffat, ever a man to play both sides, stated earlier this year “…audiences do understand that the same actor can play different parts.” But in another interview he also said “We are aware that Peter Capaldi’s played a part in Doctor Who before and we’re not going to ignore the fact.”

Alas, the possibilities for an explanation (you’re welcome, Steven):

1. The Doctor is using the Chameleon Arch.

Like the Tenth Doctor and the Master, the Twelfth Doctor (13 if you count John Hurt) placed his essence within his Fob Watch for an urgent, presently unknown reason. The TARDIS then created his persona in Pompeii (c’mon TARDIS, do better). There could be a great story line here: why did the Doctor use the Arch, who he is hiding from, who his his companion, where is his companion? If a Chameleon Arch is the reason the Twelfth Doctor is in Pompeii, then surely he has a companion near by, right?. There seems to be one reasonable option: Caecilius’s family, Metella, Evelina and Quintas, played by Tracey Childs, Francesca Fowler and Francois Pandolfo, respectively, are actually The Doctor’s companions. There’s a history of the Doctor having multiple companions, most recently with the Ponds.

It makes reasonable sense that the companions assumed the role of the Doctor’s family in order to protect his true identity and keep a close watch on him. Unfortunately, the TARDIS disappeared until the Tenth Doctor showed up. The story around the companions influencing Donna Noble, who then influences the Tenth Doctor to save Caecilius and his family, is quite intriguing.

Not unlike John Smith’s (the Tenth Doctor’s persona) use of a journal to document what he believed were dreams but were actually memories trying to break through his mind, Caecilius felt a connection to the TARDIS and obtained it for study. Or did he…?

Though it’s probably completely unintended, I’d be remiss to not also point out the the interesting coincidence of season 8’s premiere date and the date of the Doctor’s arrival in Pompeii…

bisexualrupertgiles:

How freaking much of a coincidence is this????

2. Twelve traveled to Pompeii to see Donna Noble again.

A quick recap: Donna Noble touched the Tenth Doctor’s severed hand and imbued his knowledge, which she used to save the Earth (yay!) but the Doctor had to wipe her mind because the knowledge would overwhelm her and she would burn up (boo!). This also means she cannot see or remember anything related to the Doctor ever again. Donna does not know the Doctor as anyone but David Tennant’s Tenth Doctor, however, so seeing Peter Capaldi’s Twelfth (Thirteenth?) Doctor should have no impact on her. Why the Doctor chose to see Donna in Pompeii near volcano day is a mystery, but the TARDIS often sends the Doctor to places he did not intend (see: every episode ever). The TARDIS herself has even admitted that though she doesn’t always take the Doctor where he intends to go, she does always take him where he needs to go. So maybe seeing Donna was the intent of the Doctor, but it could be possible something far more sinister is happening in Pompeii that requires the Twelfth Doctor’s attention–and the TARDIS knows it.

We’ve seem the Doctor interacting with himself in the 50th anniversary special, “The Day of the Doctor”. The Bad Wolf (Rose) puts the War Doctor, Ten and Eleven in the same place and time while the War Doctor decides if destroying everyone involved in the Time War is the right call. The Eleventh Doctor forgot his role of tossing his fez through the vortex until the exact moment it came time to do so. His memory of the events as Ten and John Hurt are completely absent. In Pompeii, the story could be similar: only after Ten arrives does Twelve recognize his roll of purchasing the TARDIS (which brings Ten to him) so he, and his family of companions, can be saved.

In either scenarios that brings Twelve to Pompeii, it would seem that he manages to lose the TARDIS. The explanation of this could be quite fun. The TARDIS has a history of being stolen, disappearing, running off to safety. Take your pick. Recognizing the dire straights of the Twelfth Doctor, the TARDIS brings Ten to the rescue. You’ll recall Ten did not intend to be in Pompeii near volcano day but that’s where the TARDIS brought him. So, once again, who’s the real hero? Time. And. Relative. Dimension. In. Space.

Or, perhaps Moffat will ignore it altogether…just like Karen Gillan’s appearance in the Fires of Pompeii…

All of this just goes to show what we already know: the BBC has, like, 7 actors and they all just take turns doing the different shows.

Doctor Who returns on Saturday, August 23rd! Will you be watching?