Why Doctor Who Must Die

Hello all, and welcome back to my series of little rants about things that really piss me off. This week (today?) I’ve been inspired to talk about the ailing tv show that is Doctor Who. I’m guessing we all saw the Christmas special? If not, I wouldn’t particularly recommend it. Essentially it’s an episode where all the characters are possibly asleep and have to somehow discover which the real world is so that they can wake up and not die. Sound familiar? That’s probably because it’s the same premise as the series 5 episode ‘Amy’s Choice’, where the characters are all dreaming and have to wake up so they don’t die in the real world. I think the idea of people-asleep-but-are-they???? has been done to death on Doctor Who, and no amount of Santa will change the fact that it was pretty boring the first time. This time it’s diabolical.

When you get to the point where even the fans are bored of your recycled storylines, maybe it’s time to stop. And I get how it happens; it’s kind of like when you’re talking to a friend you don’t see very often but you text them loads of anecdotes, and when you finally meet them in person everything you talk to them about is something you’ve already said in an email at 3am. Or something. But here’s the thing: your friend isn’t paying you for the privilege of hearing your stupid anecdote about that time you bought double-cream but when you got home it was unflavoured yoghurt! Ha! (also nobody would pay for that anecdote. Don’t tell it, dude)

That’s one thing. Another problem with the show is that it doesn’t seem like it’s really heading towards any kind of conclusion. Most shows have an end point in sight: the world gets saved, the relationship happens, whatever tension there was gets resolved. But I don’t think that can really happen now, because any tension they create is really going to be on a series by series basis. Unless it’s Gallifrey. God I hope it’s not Gallifrey. There are only so many times we can have a whole damn planet turning up be the end of a series and it’s getting boring! How a planet appearing out of nowhere can be boring is astonishing to me, but it is. And the characterisation of the Time Lords is confusing at best in Nu Who, so let’s not even go there.

The point it, there’s no drama. The Doctor might die at the end of the series, but he’s just going to regenerate. What? An upper limit on the number of regenerations? Hahaha, not for this constantly white/male protagonist! (Mysterious how out of an infinite number of combinations the Doctor is always white, male, and conventionally attractive. At least in the reboot… hmm) And if a companion dies, well there’s always the gizmo that they left under their sofa! Or it was a dream! (By the way, “it was all a dream” is most used amongst the 8 year old authors. Possibly a hint that it’s not a good idea) Even Eastenders has more drama than that! Anyone can die! Eastenders!

So maybe what I’m not saying is that it must die right now. It just has to die one day so that new people can come along with amazing new stories and turn them into tv shows.


4 thoughts on “Why Doctor Who Must Die

  1. I felt like the Christmas episode would have been okay if it hadn’t completely been done before. Although, those creatures? Headcrabs. Just sayin’. Moffat played too much Half-Life.

    I don’t quite agree on the whole needs-to-draw-to-a-conclusion part. In fact, I think even the whole series-arc thing that seems to go on these days since the reboot started isn’t entirely necessary. It’s fine to just go adventure-by-adventure and have fun without some lurking drama incoming all the time. I think my problem is that Moffat tries to be dramatic and it fails because if you DO write too much of a Doctor-centric dramatic conclusory arc, you can’t carry on afterward, or it will feel forced, so he’s pulling punches to avoid it but trying to raise tension anyway, which just does not work. I think a step back needs to be taken. Thinking about the Davies era, the series arcs were just . . . more adventures. Which was fine! And fun! There are some stories which can just . . . carry on. And Doctor Who is one of them, it just feels wrong at the moment because they seem to have set drama as a goal. In fact, way back when it WAS just adventure-by-adventure, companions dying et cetera happened and it was way more effective.

    But yeah if it could move over so that we can get started on the Ashes series that’d be grand.

    • Yeah, it does seem a little bit copied, doesn’t it?
      My thinking is that I don’t mind if the series doesn’t have an overarching storyline (as long as actual character development happens or it’ll just kind of stagnate). My problem is that it does, and each storyline has to be bigger than the one that preceded it. As the rate it’s going, the Doctor is going to turn out to be God or something at the end.
      hahaa yeah…

      • Well, depending on how much one takes the expanded universe as canon, the Doctor could be the reincarnation of one of the three founders of Gallifrey – namely “The Other” (The two other founders were Rassilon and Omega). So who knows, maybe they’re working towards that.

      • It’s actually going to happen, isn’t it. Moffat’s going to make the doctor into God. And then WHAT WILL HE DO WITH THE NEXT SERIES? Will it just be business as usual, “I’m God. Basically, run”???
        I’m not 100% convinced they really know where they’re going with the show, and that’s why it frequently makes no sense.

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