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Merry Straxmas!! READER REACTION To 'The Snowmen' - This Year's DOCTOR WHO Yuletide Spectacular - Begins Now!!




Merrick here...


...with a few brief thoughts on The Snowmen, this year’s DOCTOR WHO Christmas Special, which transmits Tuesday December 25 at 5:15 on BBC One, 9/8PM Central on BBC America, and 9E on Space.  



The past few weeks have brought us two prequels to this adventure.  More than setting up plot points, they establish a few core characters are up to before we find ‘em in The Snowmen...




BBC/BBCA required some outlets (AICN included) to sign a release regarding certain elements of The Snowmen which can not be discussed in advance of this episode.  At first this seemed distrustful and annoying, and I didn’t totally grasp the networks’ thinking.  Now that I’ve seen The Snowmen, I’d still say they’re being a tad over-protective when all is said and done...although I do ‘get’ where they’re coming from a wee bit more.  There’s definitely stuff which can be considered ‘surprises’ here...although not necessarily the “plot point” surprises many may be expecting.  


In my Friday preview post about The Snowmen, I mentioned that I felt this episode was something of a ‘game changer.’  Some Docbackers posited that this statement was meant to imply some dramatic, sweeping change was going to take “the Doctor is a Ganger!” or somesuch.  This is not the case...that’s not how The Snowmen works at all.  My ‘game changer’ comment was, simply, an allusion to factors which are already in front of us and have been for some time:  The Snowmen definitely represents Steven Moffat’s very familiar brand of WHO, but revamped.  My saying this isn’t a’s actually been quite evident via the episode’s pre-publicity throughout recent months...but many viewers have yet to connect some rather obvious dots.  


So, The Snowmen is a ‘game changer’ because it is, simply, something of a reboot...or at the very least...a ‘series refresh.’  How so?  


** The Doctor’s interaction with Jenna-Louise-Coleman’s character is very different than we’ve seen in previous Doctor/companion dynamics...and I would imagine their interaction may ultimately prove a divisive point for fans.  No matter what does or does not happen between them in the long run, their relationship here is very clearly propelling the show into some fresh and (potentially) uncharted it or hate it.  


** The new companion!  What Jenna-Louise Coleman’s character means to the Doctor will also impact future proceedings profoundly. 



This certainty is set up pointedly in The Snowmen.  And what impacts the Doctor...impacts the show.  


** The new TARDIS interior.  It looks larger in this episode than it did in the publicity stills which revealed the set to us last week.  Not nearly has mammoth as the TARDIS innards we’ve seen since Russell T. Davies’ 2005 reboot began...nor does it look as small as the few official images we’ve seen thus far have suggested. A change in a setting so signature to the show brings a substantive shift in several key regards (style, atmosphere, etc.) - no matter how cosmetic it may appear at face value.  


** New title sequence.  Far more charged and energized than we’ve seen for some time, with definite nods to “classic” WHO.  Murray Gold’s new arrangement of Ron Granier's iconic theme drives harder than his past iterations, the visuals around it and the TARDIS’ new control interior...most definitely recall WHOs of previous eras.  I’m betting this new title sequence will eventually be seen as nicely portending the vibe of Moffat-era WHO from this juncture forward.  Charged.  Dissonant.  Dizzying.  


So, yeah.  The matter of how all of this will impact upcoming WHO...and our perception of the show as a quite a bit to chew on, and I’m very much looking forward to seeing what y’all have to say about all of this in the Docback below.   But I want to be very clear here:  I’m in no way suggesting DOCTOR WHO has suddenly become unrecongizable.  You won’t have any problem finding Moffy trademarks laced throughout The Snowmen, and the show is most definitely firing on many of the same cylinders to which we've become accustomed over the last few years (there’s a fumbling Strax gag which is priceless).  It does, however, feel like DW has been given a wash and a waxing and a tune-up.  How smoothly it runs after that?  Remains to be seen.  


It’s impossible to conclude this piece without discussing Jenna-Louise Coleman, who arrives as a series regular beginning with this episode.  Devastatingly attractive in her role here (almost impossibly so), she immediately and consistently commands the screen...even when she’s not doing anything worthy of particular of note.  These qualities will most assuredly affect the future of Moffat-era WHO in very profound ways.  Smith’s going to be forced to consistently bring his “A game” to proceedings -  as JLC (and her character) are clearly challenging both the actor and his Doctor right out of the gates. 


While DOCTOR WHO has always been about change, my very strong hunch is that the addition of Jenna-Louise Coleman, and her inevitable impact on Smith the actor and his Doctor as a character, may ultimately be remembered as one NuWHO’s most profound and intriguing developments.  Seeing where the show goes...and doesn’t go...from here should be fascinating and discussion worthy at the very least. Which is often the case when something old suddenly becomes new again...






---- > SPOILER NOTE <----



This Docback will be considered a SPOILER FREE ZONE until the The Snowmen trasmits in the UK tomorrow afternoon.  


After its UK transmit, all bets are off and SPOILERS will be allowed to (and are likely to) flow freely.  


Remember...UKvians are seeing The Snowmen a number of hours before North America and elsewhere.  So, if you wish to remain unsoiled regarding Snowmen details, please proceed carefully here after...say...late morning US time tomorrow (Tuesday, December 25).  
















Glen Oliver




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[Season / Series Seven Docbacks - MOST RECENT DOCBACK IS HIGHLIGHTED]


The Coming of Season/Series 7

Asylum of the Daleks 

Dinosaurs on a Spaceship

A Town Called Mercy 

The Power of Three 

The Angels Take Manhattan 

Series 7, Part One on Blu!! 

The Coming of The Snowmen 









"The Impossible Astronaut"

"Day of the Moon"

"The Curse of the Black Spot"

"The Doctor's Wife"

"The Rebel Flesh"

"The Almost People"

"A Good Man Goes To War"

"Let's Kill Hitler"

"Night Terrors"


"The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe" (2011 Christmas Special)  






"An Unearthly Child" (Story #1)

"The Daleks" (Story #2)

"The Edge of Destruction" (Story #3)

"Marco Polo" (Story #4)

"The Keys of Marinus(Story #5)

"The Aztecs" (Story #6)

"The Sensorites" (Story #7)

"The Sensorites" (Story #7 - full DVD release) 

"The Reign of Terror" (Story #8)

"Planet of Giants" (Story #9) 

"Planet of Giants" (Story #9, full DVD release) 

"The Dalek Invasion of Earth" (Story #10)

"The Rescue" (Story #11) 

"The Romans"  (Story #12) 

"The Web Planet" (Story #13) / SHERLOCK - "A Scandal in Belgravia" (Story #4)

"The Crusade" (Story #14) 

"The Space Museum" (Story #15) 

"The Chase" (Story #16) 

"The Time Meddler" (Story #17) 

"Galaxy 4" (Story #18) 

"Mission to the Unkonwn" (Story #19) 

"The Myth Makers" (Story #20) 

"The Gunfighters" (Story #25)

"The Tomb of the Cybermen" (Story #37)

"The Mind Robber" (Story #45)

"The Krotons" (Story #47)

"The Seeds of Death" (Story #48) 

"Spearhead from Space" (Story #51) 

"The Abassadors of Death" (Story #53)

"The Claws of Axos" (Story #57) 

"The Colony in Space" (Story #58) 

"The Daemons" (Story #59) 

"Day of the Daleks" (Story #60) + Preview of the DotD Special Edition

"The Three Doctors" (Story #65) 

"Carnival of Monsters" (Story #66) 

"Death to the Daleks" (Story #72) 

"Invasion of the Dinosaurs" (Story #71) and SHERLOCK: "The Reichenbach Fall" (Story #6) 

"The Claws of Axos" (Story #77) 

"The Android Invasion" (Story #83) and SHERLOCK: "The Hounds of Baskerville" (Story #5) 

"The Face of Evil" (Story #89) 

"The Robots of Death" (Story #90) 

"The Talons of Weng-Chiang" (Story #91)

"The Sun Makers(Story #95)

"The City of Death" (Story #105)

"Nightmare of Eden" (Story #107) 

"Kinda" (Story #118)

"Black Orchid" (Story #120) 

"Snakedance" (Story #125) 

"The King's Demons" (Story #128) 

"The Five Doctors" (Story #129) 

"The Awakening" (Story #131)

"Frontios" (Story #132)

"Resurrection of the Daleks" (Story #134) 

"The Caves of Androzani" (Story #136) 

"Vengeance on Varos" (Story #138) 

"Time and the Rani" (Story #144)

"Paradise Towers" (Story #145) + New WHOvian Documentary / Newsbits

"Dragonfire" (Story #147) 

"The Happiness Patrol" (Story #149) 

"The Greatest Show in the Galaxy" (Story #151) 

"Doctor Who: The Movie" (aka TVM) - McGann) 


Merrick's Personal Journey With The Doctor (How Merrick Got Hooked On DOCTOR WHO)

DOCTOR WHO Title Sequences & DW At Comic-Con 2011

"The Crash of the Elysium" (Manchester version - interactive DOCTOR WHO adventure)

Why Eccleston Left, Here Comes Caroline Skinner, And Season/Series Six Part 1 on Blu-Ray And DVD

New Trailer For Season/Series Six Part 2

The Companions of DOCTOR WHO + New Trailer & Artwork For Season/Series 7  

Impromptu Docback!! + Galaxy 4 'Airlock' Coming to DVD, Christmas Special 2012, And More!!

The Friday Docback Mulls The 50th...

Newslet Roundup: Children in Need 2012, Christmas Special 2012, The Angel's Kiss Auido Book, And More!! 





1) a Docback should be about completely open and free discourse regarding all things WHO with, obviously, some variation on subject matter from time to time - the real world intervenes, discussions of other shows are inevitable, etc.)... 

2) matters of SPOILAGE should be handled with thoughtful consideration and sensitivity.  Posts containing SPOILERS should clearly state that a SPOILER exists in its topic/headline and should never state the spoiler itself . "** SPOILER ** Regarding Rory" is OK, for example.  "** SPOILER ** Battle of Zarathustra" is fine as well.  " **SPOILER** Why did everyone die?"  Is NOT good.  
And, above all... 

3) converse, agree, disagree, and question as much as you want - but the freedom to do so is NOT a license to be rude, crass, disrespectful, or uncivilized in any way.  Not remaining courteous and civil, as well as TROLLING or undertaking sensational efforts to ignite controversy, will result in banning.  Lack of courtesy may receive one (1) warning before a ban is instigated.  Obvious Trolling or Spamming will result in summary banning with no warning.  One word posts intended to bump-up any Docback's figures on AICN's "Top Talkbacks" sidebar will be considered actionable Spam - they not only complicate efforts to access Docback from mobile devices, but impede readers' abilities to follow or engage in flowing conversation. 
In short, it's easy.  Be excellent to each other.  Now party on... 
Readers Talkback
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  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:09 a.m. CST

    Jenna-Louise is SOOOO Hot!

    by KingKirby

    Looking forward to a companion with a little meat on her bones!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:13 a.m. CST

    Is the reboot also setting up the 50th?

    by John Brown

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:31 a.m. CST

    Consider me just... perplexed...

    by wtriker1701

    Don't know, what awaits us tomorrow... Something big might happen... or something very small... Can't wait!!!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:32 a.m. CST

    And Merry XMAS to all of you!!

    by wtriker1701

    Tomorrow there will be a lot of heaty discussion, I guess...

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:54 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas to all Docbackers ...

    by DrMorbius

    and Happy Boxing Day to those across the pond (no, not Amy).

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 9 a.m. CST

    The Silence

    by Gorehog

    The Doctor is The Silence. Everything is pushing towards that. I think that we are going to see this revealed on the 50th anniversary. That's when The Doctor will finally find himself on The Fields of Trenzalore answering a question that must never be answered. Breaking his own silence.

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 9:30 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas everyone

    by Rebel Scumb

    I must admit my main interest in seeing the Snowmen is just to see the new titles/music, I've been hoping for a refresh of that for a while now. Hopefully the episode itself is good too

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 9:49 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas Docbackers!

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    I hope everyone has a great, and safe Christmas. Look forward to tomorrow night's episode.

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 9:59 a.m. CST

    Hello all!!! Hope you're having a nice Christmas!

    by Seph_J

    As always... can't wait for Who!!!!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 10:08 a.m. CST

    Have you all seen the homemade TARDIS toy?!

    by Seph_J

    So cool:

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 10:51 a.m. CST

    Don't forget Merlin ends his 5-year arc this afternoon as well!

    by obijuanmartinez

    Kinda sad to see it go - I know they had a 5-year arc planned, but I can't believe it's done already. Too bad they really only gave Arthur like 1 whole season as King; Giles outstayed his welcome as Uther by a year or more, methinks...

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 10:53 a.m. CST

    Oh...and Merry New Year & Beef Jerky Time, Docbackers...

    by obijuanmartinez

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 11:52 a.m. CST


    by Michael Gunn

    Is hot very hot. I did like Karen Gillan a lot, but Jenna-Louise looks like she's on another level!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 12:17 p.m. CST

    A game that needed to be changed

    by Perigee

    I guess I've been here in these dockbacks long enough for you guys to know me. You know I'm a big proponent of the show, and of Moffat's work with it. You also know I haven't been around much so far this season. I don't want to say I've been disappointed, but... Well, I don't want to say that. I don't want to speak ill of the dead - characters or dynasty - but a change to something a little less frivolous would be a welcome one. Does anybody remember sitting in the theater watching ~Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom~ for the first time? Everything was going pretty OK, and then they jumped out of the plane... in the raft...? ~Uhhh...Ok...~ And then the raft went off the cliff and into the rapids...? ~Ummm... uhh...~ And then the rapids turned into a waterfall? ~FUUUUUUUUUU~ A little whimsy goes a long way. Riding dinosaurs being chased by comic robots, gunslinging sheriff cyborgs that escaped from Mork's egg and a repeating still matte shot of the Statue of Liberty looming as an Angel just... no. Apart from the premiere, I couldn't find - and still can't find - much positive to say about this season so far. And I really, really wish I could. It is time for a change. I hope this is a change in the right direction. We've had our raft, we've had our mountain, we've had our rapids and we've had our waterfall. I honestly couldn't take a sea monster attack at this point.

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 12:49 p.m. CST

    Dr. Who has gotten exceptionally worse over the last decade.

    by Mr Soze

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 1:30 p.m. CST

    I think one of those spoilers is probably my theory about Oswin...

    by tangcameo

    ...or Oswins. Although I didn't see the most recent Breaking Bad finale coming.

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 1:56 p.m. CST

    I’ve seen this episode about 5 times thus far

    by BoRock_A_Boomer

  • Seems like at least one of those has to be true. Which? Merrick, is this issue touched on in the episode? I think if Matt Smith can convincingly fight off JLC's advances he must be one hell of an actor!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 3:35 p.m. CST

    Can't wait ... [Merlin spoilers]

    by reaper28

    Merlin's end was excellent and I particularly liked the very end bit where Merlin was walking on the road near Glastonbury Tor ... I don't mind admitting, I did get a little moist of the eye then, and wishing Arthur would rise and smite the fucking knobheads in Parliament ... [cough], I digress Really looking forward to DW tomorrow afteroon ... Sonic Toblerone at the ready ... I hope the DW team take a few chances and go for it in preparation of the 50th ... maybe setting up the Valeyard?

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 4:41 p.m. CST

    One da\y to go - Merry Christmas, Docbackers!

    by DoctorTom

    I have hopes for this one. Last year's special was like Moffat was making a souffle with a marching band practicing right behind him - it seemed the elements were all there, but it fell flat soon enough. The teaser clips and prequels though make this look like it will be better, hopefully on par with Christmas Carol. Here's hoping!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 5:27 p.m. CST

    rip oscar 2.0

    by walt

    who also starred in some of the best twilight zone epis and was great on match game and still funny after cancer took most of his vocal chords this site wont note his passing so i will goodbye will be missed

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 5:33 p.m. CST

    I hope you enjoy tomorrow's episode, Perigee


    Merry Whomas, everyone!

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 6:47 p.m. CST

    a soft reboot

    by cosmic_dolphin

    Sounds pretty welcome to me, I had grown a bit weary of the ponds and their all conquering love for each other. I rewatched a Christmas carol on the I player the other day and thought it tremendous, so if the snowmen can get anywhere close and also keep my 3 boys entertained then we're in for a treat.

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 7:50 p.m. CST

    A Poll on the Ponds

    by veteran_of_mu

    I agree with cosmic_dolphin, Ponds should have had their exit before the Petrichor perfume episode last year. They would have been remembered fondly and could have returned from time to time. As it is we've had no resolution of any of the major plot points. I'm not certain a resolution is possible now ... so I should ask. Which, if any of these do you expect to see wrapped up? * Cracks that contain prisoners. * Similar cracks that suck people out of the universe. * Silence that falls. * Silents who are a species. * Silence that is a religious order that wants silence not to fall. * Amy's missing memories from the Beast Below. * The reason Amy didn't remember the Daleks. * The Duck Pond. * Why the Doctor was grabbing his chest in that scene. * Rory's 1990 staff card. * Why the anglican marines are allied with the Silence. * The reason Silence did not fall when the Pandorica opened. * Or was the event collapse the silence? * The identity of the voice that said that silence will fall, Doctor. * The identity of Jeff and why wasn't he at Amy's wedding? * What happened to the Doctor locked out of the universe. * The significance of Canton Everett Delaware III. * The reason the Dream Lord was interested in Amy. And who the DL was in the first place ... * The reason Amy is content that her baby was swiped. And that her baby spends most of her life locked up in a prison for a murder she didn't commit. * Who runs stormcage, who judged the crime, why the Doctor didn't appeal the sentence himself ... whoops, sorry, running away from Amy ... * The reason the cards changed in the ganger episodes. * And the reason Amy can't have children now. * The origin and fate of Madame Kovarian. * The reason for the Doctor's manipulation of Amy in TGWW. Can Moffatt possibly make any of this make sense now? Should he even try? Should we just accept the gaps and move on?

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:02 p.m. CST


    by Seph_J

    ...and the bow tie changes. And the extra floor in Amy's house. And why everything went quiet (silent) at the end of the vampire episode...

  • Dec. 24, 2012, 8:14 p.m. CST

    Good News Everyone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    by axcel1

    SyFy is showing all 26 episodes of that wonderful Australian K9 tv series tomorrow at 10 Am. (Of course, "Good News" and "wonderful" is a matter of opinion. LOL)

  • I like the smaller Who episodes where they are dealing with villians or exploring creepy planets. Turning Rory into a robot, having Amy be River Song's mom and having multiple plots going on at once with none ever being resolved (crack in timelines for example) is exhausting. My 10 year old son loves the show and we watch it together but sometimes the show loses us due to its manic energy and need to jump all over the place. Calm down and start telling solid stories with resolutions again. Bringing Neil Gaiman in as a writer should help and I'm looking forward to his stories.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 3:19 a.m. CST


    by veteran_of_mu

    I was trying to stick to the elements that can't be resolved without Amy & Rory. Bow ties, extra floors and quiet silence can still be sorted out I think.

  • We've all heard the catchphrase, but it was only spoken, never written down i during the show. We know The Silents to be an religious order - could it be, that The Moff indeed planned something simple of an resolution along the way of *Silents will fall, when the oldest question in the universe is asked!*? I'm still hopeful, that at least this question will be resolved by the end of season/series 7. Whatever the outcome... actually I'd like the idea of *Silents will fall*... So the enemy would be defeated for good, when the question is asked. Most of the other plot points you wrote about, caractacuspotts, I fear, will have no resolution at all, now that the Ponds simply don't live anymore and never can or will be revisited. Another plot point I could add would be, how Auton Rory could have happened, though he never existed, thanks to dragged into the crack. So many of those plot points could have been simply erased by The Big Bang 2, but to be honest... that sounds like a little too easy for me. Although... it might be... not the most clever solution, but a possible one. Here's still hope, we get a 3rd Big Bang, that resets the last one. Although just a very faint hope...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:16 a.m. CST

    Happy Doctor Who day everyone!

    by paul cook

    Looking forward to tonight, christmas will then be complete...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:17 a.m. CST

    @wtriker1701: Auton Rory is accounted for

    by veteran_of_mu

    The auton Romans were created out of Amy's memories as a trap for the Doctor by the Nestenes in the Alliance in TPO. Rory had played a Roman at a costume party with Amy (we saw a snapshot) so he turned up along with the other Romans Amy remembered. Simple enough? Then BB2 Rory retains his memories of being Roman Rory because Amy remembers him being Roman Rory as well as original Rory. As for "Silents Will Fall" ... doesn't ring right to me. But I am willing to bet a toblerone that next year's post-50th Christmas special is titled "Silent Night" ...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:01 a.m. CST

    Yep, caractacuspotts, silly amnesian brain of mine...

    by wtriker1701

    And the Toblerone bet is on! As for my Silents Will Fall, ok?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:08 a.m. CST

    Merry Christmas, Docbackers!

    by Minque

    Looking forward to the return of the Doctor and to what everyone has to say.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 10:41 a.m. CST

    Merry Docmas

    by aitvc

    Not long now everypeeps...a nice teaser the other day on BBC one where the doctor was sporting a deerstalker...very Talons of Weng!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 10:41 a.m. CST

    caractacuspotts -a lot of that HAS been dealt with

    by glenn_the_frog

    * Cracks that contain prisoners. * Similar cracks that suck people out of the universe. -Results of the big bang 2 tardis explosion, in reverse. * Silence that falls. * Silents who are a species. * Silence that is a religious order that wants silence not to fall. -All connected, hopefully we'll get another ep or two about the neverending war. * Amy's missing memories from the Beast Below. -Same missing memories as everyone else. She saw the suffering space whale, and decided she didn't want to remember. She pressed the button. Not a big deal. * The reason Amy didn't remember the Daleks. -They were pulled out of the reality and that part of the timeline erased. Same with the giant cyberman, publicized alien invasions, and for a while, Rory. * The Duck Pond. -Same thing. * Why the Doctor was grabbing his chest in that scene. -Er..? * Rory's 1990 staff card. -thats small enough it can honestly just be written off as a production error. Or assume while Rory was a centurian for 2000 years he practiced as a nurse at some point and got a badge and that got mixed in with hs things in a timey wimey universe exploding way. Production error is easier. * Why the anglican marines are allied with the Silence. -Because the doctor was a threat to the universe. Putting aside fleets and destroying species on his whim. he's done lots of big bad scary things. there's a "never ending war" going on... that we may never see hte start or end of. Same reason the daleks and cybermen and everything else ever united to trap the doctor. * The reason Silence did not fall when the Pandorica opened. * Or was the event collapse the silence? * The identity of the voice that said that silence will fall, Doctor. -these are all the same thing as your earlier three Silence questions. Hopefully we'll get follow up on that yet. But it really only needs a single episode to tie it all together and wrap up, and the Ponds weren't essential in a centuries long war anyway. * The identity of Jeff and why wasn't he at Amy's wedding? -Amy has a lot of friends family. Not everyone could set aside their schedules. * What happened to the Doctor locked out of the universe. Do you mean the copy of 10? He's married to Rose (ick.) Do you mean the one before the big bang 2? Amy remembered him back. Its only fan speculation that there's two of them now... the way the show presented it, he's the same guy. * The significance of Canton Everett Delaware III. -Whats the significance of Nefertita or Strax or the Brigadier? The Doctor makes a lot of friends that he sees over the course of their lifetimes on multiple adventures... most of them owe him favors. * The reason the Dream Lord was interested in Amy. And who the DL was in the first place ... -Doctor's dark side brought about from space pollen. Compelte fan speculation that it was anything more than stated. And given that the doctor was prone to destroying civilizations for a while, he DOES indeed have a dark side. * The reason Amy is content that her baby was swiped. And that her baby spends most of her life locked up in a prison for a murder she didn't commit. -She wasn't content... she just accepted that the Doctor was doing everything he could... and that she knew eventually it would work out to be River. And River being in jail is more like a hotel. She can get out or be visited whenever she wants... and it seems it only lasted a few months anyway. * Who runs stormcage, who judged the crime, why the Doctor didn't appeal the sentence himself ... whoops, sorry, running away from Amy ... -The warden of stormcage. A judge. Because the Doctor needs to pretend he's dead. * The reason the cards changed in the ganger episodes. -Production fluke. Multiple takes. Differnet camera shots. Someone knocked the cards over during one take and they had to be reassembled. * And the reason Amy can't have children now. -Because she had a time-head baby in her womb and the silence experimented on her. Women that have even one tricky pregnancy often can't have another. * The origin and fate of Madame Kovarian. -can't she just be one of the many millions of lives the Doctor has ruined or threatened? Him not thinking about his cause and effect screwed up lives he wasn't aware of, and as a result, some people hate him. Doesn't need to be any more personal or distinct than that. * The reason for the Doctor's manipulation of Amy in TGWW. -Because an accident happened and he preferred to save the Amy that never suffered for 40 years, and because maintaining the paradox of keeping both alive would have sucked, even for the tardis. Easier to make it so the suffering one just never happened than to deal with the consequences. The doctor IS a bit of a bastard after all.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 10:43 a.m. CST



    Half of your points have been answered already (i.e Who was the Dream Lord? Um, a psychic manifestation of the darkest parts of the Doctor's character, given life by psychic pollen that was stuck in the time rotor of the TARDIS. What more were you hoping for?), and the remaining two thirds are pointless nitpicking (Who really cares about the origin of Madame Kovarian? You want to know why Jeff, a character who was onscreen for around five minutes, wasn't at Amy's wedding? Really?). There are really only a few questions remaining (such as the voice in the TARDIS) and I'm willing to think that Moffat will eventually answer some of these.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:08 a.m. CST

    Here we go fellow Brits!

    by donkey_lasher

    I hope this one is better than last years.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:09 a.m. CST

    Unanswered questions that NEED to be answered before 11's exit.

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Amy's house being 2 floors on the outside, and three floors on the inside. The episode "The Lodger" was made to show that something was wrong with Amy's house. The voice in the TARDIS talking about "Silence will fall". Who took over the TARDIS which resulted in it's explosion. Extra bits that could be nothing: Rory's id badge Duck pond

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:13 a.m. CST

    Here we go!!!! Enjoy everyone!!

    by Seph_J

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 12:14 p.m. CST


    by donkey_lasher

    I enjoyed that.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 12:15 p.m. CST

    Spoilers ahoy!! From here on out.

    by donkey_lasher

    Bring it on.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 12:17 p.m. CST

    Who cares if she's a mystery when she's that hot?

    by donkey_lasher

    Just sayin' :)

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 12:19 p.m. CST


    by Seph_J


  • Dec. 25, 2012, 12:29 p.m. CST


    by jacksparness

    Thanks for writing that post. Getting so fed up with these chaps asking the same bloody questions over and over again! They've all been answered!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 12:43 p.m. CST

    Great fun episode, but will make more sense if ......

    by Dalius

    if you have seen Asylum of the Daleks, and the little prequel videos to this episode (links at the top). *Spoilers follow* The bad guys were far too easily dealt with, but I guess they weren't really the main point of the episode. Jenna-Louise Coleman was both fascinating and adorable, and I hope it doesn't take the Doctor long to find her. And Strax was just brilliant in every scene he was in. And so many great lines. I think I need to watch the episode again.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:03 p.m. CST

    Best Christmas special since the show returned in 2005...

    by Darth_Tarantino

    Loved every minute of it and can't wait to see where Clara's story is going. Love the new TARDIS interior (very old school), love seeing The Doctor's face back in the title sequence and his new threads look great. Even better was the way this story set up the Second Doctor's battle with the Great Intelligence. Nice touch, Moff. Also - I spotted Warwick Davis in the trailer for the next half of the series! :D

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:05 p.m. CST

    Sir, please do not noogie me during combat prep!

    by Darth_Tarantino

    Strax needs a spin-off :P

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:21 p.m. CST

    Terrific Episode

    by cosmic_dolphin

    So much to enjoy on many levels. Great new titles, the music is a step up too. Kids loved the scary snowmen 7 thought Strax was hilarious. I'm enjoying the new assistant immensely..not just a pretty face but this one can really ACT too. Interested to see where they take this one, just hope we don't up with more questions than answers in the end. The wife ( a Sherlock addict ) said there were emany lines taken from A Study in Pink, maybe Moff was throwing them in there to keep us on our toes. It all looked great, and kept the family entertained - can't wait to rewatch it when the kids are asleep.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:39 p.m. CST

    Without doubt one of the better specials

    by Timmid

    Didn't let itself get too caught up in Christmas sentiment and benefited from that. Tears saving the day was iffy though. Strax brilliant as was the Great Detective and her wife. Only bothersome thing is that we've seen Moff before writing story line cheques that his intellgence is unable to deliver on -- so I'm not investing a lot in the Clara mystery as its unlikely to pay off--- also think that her dying was a bit of a regurgitation of the Rory story and frankly I don't need any more special companions. Decent enough if flawed episode, just worried by the same old tropes being thrown out there.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:42 p.m. CST

    LOVED IT!!!!


    Well, I thoroughly enjoyed that! It put a huge smile on my face and made me incredibly glad to be back in the company of The Doctor. Thank God Moffat sorted himself out after last year's travesty! I'm liking Clara and her character is very intriguing - I certainly wasn't expecting her to die again! Plenty of laughs too which I appreciated (my favourite being: "Hello, I'm a lizardwoman from the dawn of time and this is my wife.") And I love the new TARDIS interior! I didn't think that I would when I saw photographs of it but watching the lights spin around as the central column began moving up and down was awesome! You know, I've just realised that I've never seen The Web Of Fear which was referenced in this episode. Guess I'll have to do something about that. Hmmmm. Oh, and I really like the new opening titles (the new version of the theme tune is really great) and the "Coming Soon" trailer was good to see. Can't wait for Neil Gaiman's Cybermen story!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:43 p.m. CST

    Minor spoilers inside

    by LarkStew

    I enjoyed that episode, still a bit manic but it seemed to hold together better than previous Christmas specials. Not perfect, but very enjoyable. Loved the Sontaran, every sentence was him gently itching to shoot/bomb/attack something. Not sure but did the story actually get resolved? Maybe I blinked. At the end the Doctor just seemed to rush off to look for Clara.... Speaking of Clara... Gemma Louise Coleman is wonderful. Really good actress, beautiful big doe eyes, performs well with Matt Smith. I'm saying it now... if she wants to, she could be a HUGE star in a few years time! Karen who?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 1:45 p.m. CST

    Bale -- most of us have not seen it

    by HornOrSilk

    The Abominable Snowmen AND The Web of Fear are mostly lost. There is an episode each available, the audio recordings, and any recons which have been made. Alas. Web of Fear starts the Brigadier's storyline. It's also fairly enjoyable, from what I can tell, with the audio.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 2:05 p.m. CST

    It's the Silence messing with the Doctor once again

    by David Cloverfield

    River failed. Clara is a new approach. Or something completely different, but I'm pretty sure she (and versions of her) are planted in time specifically for the Doctor.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 2:20 p.m. CST

    Loved it.

    by satansteve

    Loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it loved it!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 2:30 p.m. CST



    Damn. That's a shame. I see there's a literary adaptation so I'll probably buy that instead.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 2:31 p.m. CST

    darth_tarantino is right

    by Rhuragh

    That was the best Christmas special since the series was revived. I really enjoyed that. Interesting way to start out Coleman's character too.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 2:37 p.m. CST

    Bale -- the target novel is ok

    by HornOrSilk

    It's not as good as listening to the audio. If you can, do so; or if you can find the recon, watch it (the recon uses the audio, pictures, etc). It is considered a classic story for many reasons.... and though it might be a bit over-long in modern standards, it is good as a whole

  • FFS...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 3:25 p.m. CST

    Loved it.

    by Chorlton01

    That was the best Xmas episode so far. Judged perfectly. Thanks Moffat.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 3:30 p.m. CST

    Great stuff! [spoilers]

    by reaper28

    Really enjoyed it, even if I did manage to lose the first couple of minutes by switching the Sky+ box to BBC HD when my family had paused the damn thing and I didn't pay attention ... d'oh! The Tardis Control Room has never looked better - the spinning mounts(?) above the time rotor looked cool ... JLC = Wowser - cute and intelligent with some great lines (speech not body, although ...) The Holmes references were nice and had a little chuckle at the idea that Doyle has based Sherlock on Madame Vastra's adventures ... I thought Vastra, Jenny and Strax worked well in the episode, especially Strax who pretty much stole every scene his was in ... Do I smell a spinoff? With Torchwood's fate uncertain, could The Great Detective trio be a possible second series set in the Whoverse? I'd personally love it if they used it as a replacement for the Sarah Jane Adventures if for no other reason than to make Daily Mail readers explode with horror at the alien/lesbian relationship corrupting our children ... Either way loved the Christmas Episode and can't wait for the rest of the series, although I wish the DW team wouldn't keep going back to the same old monsters I'm starting to get bored of the Cybermen and Daleks - give 'em a rest for a few years ... My Toblerone Rating: 9 (chunks left still)

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 4:02 p.m. CST

    Lets kill Rory again and again

    by tomdolan04

    Oh wait we cant. Lets kill Clara. <p> I enjoyed the episode but at this point ive come to accept Moff is just a cocktease. The content of the ep was strong but this 'who is oswin' motif left me stone cold and a throwback to the shit in Series 5 and 6 that comes across as them thinking theyre so bloody clever. <p> Seriously. JLC was great. Smith was great. Angry potato head was great. No conspiracies within multi episode conspiracies and no sodding killing her repeatedly to rape any dramatic tension remaining in the show. After River / Amy / Rory / Cracks / exploding Tardis'....i just dont have any faith in them to care about such plot angles. Sorry.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 4:13 p.m. CST

    But dont misunderstand me

    by tomdolan04

    agree that its one of the better Christmas specials and probably the best since S701 for me

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 4:42 p.m. CST

    Remember *spoilers*

    by Captain Howdy

    A great festive episode which contained enough plot, action and humour to keep everything thundering along at a lovely pace. As others have rightly said, the reappearance of Vastra, Jenny and Strax is an absolute pleasure, as is Ms. Coleman's (slight) return. The dispatching of the villain felt a little rushed, (and a little cheesy), but they really are packing the tin on this one, so I can forgive their haste in wanting to move on to a revitalised Doctor and the upcoming Clara-centric arc. Overall, a genuine treat for Christmas Day, with numerous nods to the past, and one eye fixed firmly on the future. *SPOILERS* ''Remember''. Clara has said it to the Doctor twice, and both times just before she dies. Also, the Doctor seemed to have trouble remembering the connection between a 1967 map of the Underground, a possible invasion using said location, and The Great Intelligence, even when he was staring at the name on a calling card. Memory problems, Doctor? Doctor? Doctor who?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 5:09 p.m. CST

    A few scattershot thoughts

    by Stegman84

    First the cons: 'Clara' I'm still unconvinced by. Right now, to me, she just seems like Rory in a dress, with Amy Pond's personality stuck on the outside, albeit with a different accent. I mean the girl can act, but thus far the character just seems like an amalgam of everything we've seen before from Moffat, just mixed in a blender and given a new name and outfit. I truly hope she starts to differentiate as a character a bit more in future episodes, or else I fear fandom's love affair with her might be rather short-lived. Can't say I like the new titles either. It just seems like they have tried to throw too much into that brief intro bit, and as a result it is just a bit of a cluttered and overly hyper mess. Personally I much prefer streamlined titles, where they choose one core design concept or idea, and then follow it through in a more streamlined fashion. These titles were more like throwing everything they could think of at the screen and hoping that some of it stuck. Unfortunately, it all just kind of cancelled each other out in a fury of speed and motion. For example, I like the idea of having Matt's face in the credits as a nice throwback to the original series, but the blink and you'll miss it fashion in which it is handled, surrounded by so much other stuff all constantly and insistently vying for attention, well, it just spoils it. And that CGI Tardis at the end looks pretty cheap and jarringly fake, and is a poor way to end. It reminds me of the awful cgi moment with the asteroids in the McCoy era titles. I actually didn't mind the new score arrangement, however. So at least there's that. Now the pros: Pretty much everything else. Sure the episode was a bit slight, the villains under-developed, the cloud a bit fanciful, and the tears ending a bit hokey, and I could do without yet another kissing companion in the new series so soon, but overall I had such a good time watching this special I honestly didn't much care about any of that. Certainly not enough for it to spoil my overall enjoyment anyhow. Plus as a whore to the past, I loved all of the little nods to old Who laced through it as well. For me, definitely up there as one of the best of the Christmas episodes. There are nits to be picked if you want to get picking, but all in all I found it a really fun romp. Last half of the season trailer got me suitably pumped too. One last thing though, can we please have an end to the whole Doctor Who? meme now, at least for a while. Honestly it's just starting to grate a bit now...for me at least.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 5:17 p.m. CST

    Silence will Fall

    by tomdolan04

    Remember - it must MEAN something. We can just say it over and over menacingly with no elaboration for a few years until we decide to maybe or maybe not do something with it. If we cant be bothered to take it anywhere well just laugh it off as geeks caring too much when weve only used it as a plot device for several hours of show <p> Sorry but its cheap writing. Which is frustrating since they done nearly all the donkey work in this xmas ep. I liked Clara. I liked her personality and her delivery. Feeling the need to shove in at the end that she dies but its ok since shes not dead and wibbly wobbly timey wimey mystery is going on was just bizarre and almost a repeat of Amy 'oooh why do you live in such a big house alone mysterious woooooo' Pond. <p> I think JLC has more potential than Gillan and I liked Pond to an extent but Moff really better not play as fast and loose with the shows (internal or not) logic this year. Complicate it as much as you want, I live for hard sci-fi but in past years theres just been no satisfactory pay-off. <p> Lets say 'Doctor WHO?' again. Weve gone a few eps without it....

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 5:50 p.m. CST

    A wonderful episode.

    by dj_bollocks

    If you can't find joy in all of that and at Christmas too... The actual Snowmen / Intelligence is really just the MacGuffin of the episode the characters and the writing/dialogue was just fantastic. The tone was perfect for kids and for adults. This is near perfect 21st Century Who... Fun, Fast Paced, Family. I'd quite happily watch that again which is not the case of many Christmas specials and as I said before I had the feeling that it might rank up there with the first Christmas Special because that was Tennant's first episode. I think Moff's made a smart move - because the Christmas Day episode tends to get more viewers than the traditional eps here in the UK... Maybe they might have thought to start the series now rather than wait til April ? Anyway loved it... If you didn't that's up to you - I won't patronise you for it. The only thing I'm cautious about is that we know Moff doesn't always deliver the money shot on the fantastic premises. I hope the curious case of Clara doesn't drag out and I hope it delivers its payola. And I love JLC and her particularly long eyebrows... Merry Christmas Docbackers !

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 5:52 p.m. CST


    by wtriker1701

  • This Christmas Special ROSE to the heights of my favourites (The Christmas Invasion, The Runaway Bride and A Christmas Carol). JLC's Clara/Oswin is among my favourite companions (Rose and Amy) right NOW. I loved the pacing, loved the story, won't be nitpicky at all - because i enjoyed the total hour of it. Best of all: Matt Smith's Doctor made sense - in every sense of the word. First serious, broody, non-interested at all -- and then we've got the whole flavour of run, fun and done! He was on the top of his game - welcome back! Can't wait for the rest of series 7. Seems, we may have one hell of a ride back for us again. Seriously: Matt Smith tonight was on par with my favourite David Tennant!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 6:17 p.m. CST

    My take on Oswain / Clara

    by s0l

    Don't think it's a "Rory" situation (i.e. same person getting killed each time like Kenny from southpark) Think it's more like Gwyneth / Gwen Cooper. can't remember how did the Doctor described it. But something like the same soul coming back again leading a totally different life but having a hint of it's past lives. like wondering if their is a kitchen...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 6:41 p.m. CST

    The best Xmas episode for a long time.

    by Octavian

    Which isn't saying much, but rather enjoyable.. The good. New title music is an improvement. Not a patch on the version from November 1963, but hey... Smith. A nice performance, despite the hat. JLC. This woman can act. Strax. Great fun. The less good. Richard E. Grant was not given much to do but biting the furniture surely wasn't one of them. So that's Withnail and Marwood in Who. Richard Griffiths nearly got the main gig years ago, so we just need him, Danny and Presuming Ed for the set. Not sold on the TARDIS interior yet. Reminiscent of the Krell lab crossed with multiple HAL9000s. Moffat can't help but lecture us on political and social mores. It's boring. It would be tedious even if Moffat was as clever as he thinks he is. "Victorian Values" is a loaded phrase in British politics. Yes, Steven, we know, you're amazing. Stop telling us how right on you are. we don't care. Borderline narcissism is such an unattractive trait. Which brings me neatly to... Doyle borrowed his great detective from a Moffat creation? Hmmm... OK, that might be amusing if the real truth wasn't that Moffat now lists himself as being Holmes's co-creator on that miserable Cumberbatch tripe. So, it was entertaining overall, but as with most other Moffat stuff I am left with a sense of deja vu. If he isn't borrowing - it's Christmas so I'll be nice - wholesale from others he is recycling his own. The Snowmen were the Scarecrows from Human Nature/Family of Blood, while REGs resurrection was straight out of The Unquiet Dead.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 6:47 p.m. CST


    by the desolate son

    ...are hella easily pleased. Terrible.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:21 p.m. CST

    My take on Clara

    by HornOrSilk

    She has some connection to Rory and we are still in a long game, with Rory coming back sometime

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:25 p.m. CST


    by dj_bollocks

    It's a bit HAT-ish... but I'd be interested to see if you were right !

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST

    Not bad. One of their stronger christmas eps.

    by glenn_the_frog

    After a first mostly weak half of the season, I thought that was a return to form. Not a great episode, but not a bad one either. They had the sense to keep the cheezy looking snowmen off camera as much as possible, good call. Jenna is great, and I like the new opening. I also hope the mystery runs its course sooner rather than later. We JUST did this with Amy, AND River, we don't need another prolonged companion mystery. We've got the 50th coming up, so it'd be good if this is wrapped by the end of the season rather than getting in the way of... whatever is going to happen with that. So... hopefully within the next six episodes.

  • Moffat really has to move on soon. Smith should stay. He's a very good Doctor. If only Gaiman would give it a go. We are wandering into a hinterland where we are moving from the show being the reason for the merchandise to the merchandise being the reason for the show.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:44 p.m. CST

    Great Guardian review...

    by dj_bollocks

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 7:58 p.m. CST

    So... Clara's birthday is November 23rd.

    by glenn_the_frog

    Which is of course the birthday of the show. What does THAT mean?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:01 p.m. CST

    Interesting spots...

    by dj_bollocks

    It's smaller on the outside

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:03 p.m. CST

    Agh... Edited previous post...

    by dj_bollocks

    WInter is coming - Game Of Thrones... Ladder in the sky - Star Trek Voyage Home and as Glenn has already mentioned Clara's birthday is Nov 23rd... nice touch...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:08 p.m. CST

    I was really liking the idea of a Victorian era companion

    by ThrowMeTheIdol

    Not looking forward to just another girl from our era. What a bore for a show about time travel. Should have just stuck with this version of her.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:09 p.m. CST

    Had to laugh at Moffat trying to steal winter is coming

    by ThrowMeTheIdol

    From Game of Thrones. One mention could have been explained as a homage but repeated mentions, he was just trying to make it a Who tagline instead of a GoT one.

  • It happened with Rose's Bad wolf, etc...

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:47 p.m. CST

    Here's one work: FAIL

    by veteran_of_mu

    I loved the length of the show. JLC actually having an arc was a welcome change from randomly acquiring poppets with no purpose. Can't wait to see her and Alex Kingston together. Reviving the Great Intelligence was fine too. But there are so many things here that simply didn't work: * Like most Moffatt villains, Simeon was completely without motivation. Both Richard Grant and Ian McKellen were wasted - which is an accomplishment of a sort, just not the sort you want to accomplish. It would have taken only one or two lines to make Grant the head of a Lovecraftian Starry Wisdom cult and become properly dangerous. Instead he's yet another introverted rich kid. That's just lazy. * The children's father's undeveloped flirting with JLC was a waste of screen time. It should have been cut. In fact the children's father should have been completely cut - he simply had nothing to do. * No scene of the ice governess breaking her way out of the pond. What good is a scary pond if you don't show the monster emerging from it? Instead we had multiple shots of ice crystals formng and the bitey snowflake. SFX fail. * The Doc handing out his key twice before discovering the JLC was also Oswin Oswald needlessly confused his relationship with her. It's clear that Moffatt is not plotting anything, just transcribing scenes from his imagination and hoping magic will make them hang together. Unfortunately genuine magic requires a logical substrate, and this ain't it. * ~The tears of a family~ was horribly evocative of last year's ~humany womany~. If Yog Sothoth - who would have been referred to as ~the key and the gate~ if Moffatt had any class - could be defeated by these two blubbing tots there's really no reason to suppose he's going to cause the last day of humanity on this planet any time soon. If instead he was defeated by Clara being super-powered, let the Doc be properly mystified to pique our imaginations. * Sherlock Holmes needed to be taken out the back and shot. I mean, how many references do we need? I counted 5. 7 including the prequel. Okay, Moffatt, we get it. You also write Sherlock. Really. Stop. Please! * A friend of the Doctor's brought Strax back to life. He could have just been another clone but, okay, he's not, so then ... who did it? Did Amy remember him back to life? Was he saved in the Library? Is he a ganger? Did the Doc's friend maybe also bring Lorna Bucket back to life? It's not that hard to plot something, is it? * The doctor's kevorka reeling in women wherever he goes is just ... icky. I mean either JLC knew who he was, in which case that should have been hinted at, or she didn't, in which case throwing herself into a strange man's handsome cab just 4 years after the Whitechapel murders rings hollow. * Amd why was Clara both a barmaid and a governess? If you're going to go Mary Poppins, do it properly. As it is, we all know we'll never know now. It's yet another tawdry quirk from the tawdry quirks department. And the only thing she could fit in her Julie Andrews bag was her governess dress? She could have been pulling out half a dozen items and noting that it is bigger on the inside ... * The Doctor smooching all over JLC like a teen who just got his first blowjob was terrible. Not that we don't want to see JLC getting smooched. But for God's sake give the Doc some kind of dignity. * Victorian Values means ... what? It was better than the first half of S7. But that's not saying anything, is it? Even as a kid's show, give me Mary Poppins any day of the week.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 8:47 p.m. CST

    Er ... word. Geez.

    by veteran_of_mu

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:08 p.m. CST

    So how many got the "The Web Of Fear" reference?

    by rockyb61

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:13 p.m. CST

    Clara is The Master

    by RockLobster800

    Seriously, wouldn't that be messed up? Just imagine that: The Doctor's companion, who has already been a Dalek, turns out to be The Master in disguise. The Master knows that the Doctor loves them Earth girls, we've seen that he has a bit more control over his regenerations (which he seems to have quite a bit of) than The Doctor (willing himself to regenerate as well as refusing to later on)....maybe he/she is planting themselves throughout the universe, dying and regenrating into the same form somehow, and luring The Doctor in, erasing his legend from time by travelling with him in the TARDIS and maybe even erasing the Doctor's own memory of himself. We could have her as a companion all season before she's revealed as the major villain for the 50th anniversary, where multiple doctors combine forces to help 11th remember who is/save him from The Master. No? Nobody? Not even a little bit?

  • This fact had sorta been festering in the back of my mind for awhile, and I fully realized when watching this episode tonight. I forget her actual name, but Vastra's wife/helper, soooooooo damn cute.Z<br> <br> And it's funny but, initially I was thinking, hang on, why isn't the Doctor noticing Clara right away in the episode? It wasn't until almost half way thru til it occurred to me, that ohhhhhh yea... he never actually SAW her "human" face in the Dalek episode.

  • gee, don't tell me you prefer Elementary to it.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:35 p.m. CST

    I loved mean Matt Smith. First time I could tolerate him.

    by Nintendarth

    His whoopy-doopy persona from other episodes I'd seen was downright intolerable. I'm weird, though. my fave doctor is Peter Davidson, he of the 1900s dress and perfectly casual oh-wait-no-you've-gone-and-mucked-it demeanor, content to let the bad guys fuck it all up on their own.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:37 p.m. CST

    caractacuspotts has a good point...

    by Lazarus Long

    Why WAS Clara working at the pub? Was that explained at all?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:38 p.m. CST

    The Fall of the 11th

    by HornOrSilk

    Clara's 11th death?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 9:38 p.m. CST

    Hello, Sexy.

    by Perigee

    Flawed maybe - but I can absolutely live with this. Hot damn - things feel back on track: God grant it remains so.

  • Actually that's not fair because they started Perri out as Spank Bank Material and then covered her up in ugly christmas sweaters and Disney princess outfits. But in all seriousness, yes, JLC is HOT. Yes, she is a good actress. But I can't deal with yet another "mysterious companion". It does sort of feel like Moffatt is just spinning his wheels. From what I can tell the only thing that struck me as different was that they just jumped straight ahead to The Doctor and her having a romantic relationship right off the bat instead of nuancing it like they did with Rose Tyler and all the others since. I don't mind so much because, really...who could blame him. But the sexual banter is turned way the hell up now "you're going to have to take off those clothes", zooming into her boobs etc. And believe me, I'm not complaining. I just hope they can keep the stories sharp and intelligent though everyone's fears that they're simplifying and dumbing the show down further because it's the flagship show for BBC America may be true. We will see. Still since they went to the trouble of referencing Troughton could they retcon one of the Oswins to be Zoe Herriot because that basically who she's just like. She's just Zoe Herriot with bigger eyes and bigger boobs. Again, not complaining but just sayin'.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 10:55 p.m. CST

    loved it, and the music

    by Kathryn Gail

    Loved this episode, its wordplay and referenceplay, tight pace, darkness juxtaposed with Clara's brightness, new titles, basically everything. . . I agree with comments that amongst the few weaknesses were Clara's unexplained moonlighting at a bar and the random lingering upon the stairway-to-a-cloud, but "so Clara can chase a carriage in a barmaid-i-er dress" and "so Matt can say 'taller in the inside'" are really the only justifications we need! Loved the music, especially Clara's theme which I hope sticks beyond the Christmas episode. Profoundly psyched for the upcoming submarine episode (per trailers)!!! Now BBCA has on Angels Take Manhattan, which for me mysteriously just did not live up to the hype (structurally, not in terms of performances)--not a problem with this Xmas episode! ~and a late "Merry Christmas, Docbackers!" since I've been in spoiler avoidance mode up to 9pm EST! OK, 7 min to fix a leftover-turkey sandwich before the repeat. . .

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 10:58 p.m. CST

    What is not to love...

    by Juaners

    Seriously I had nothing but love for this episode, the tone wasn't overly sentimental like previous Christmas specials. Usually the excitement for the viewer is expressed through the companion or the people being helped by the Doctor but this time around we got to experience this through the Doctor's rediscovery of his sense of adventure, his re-awakening which is new. Totally loved all the nods of where the show has been, from the new/old Tardis control room to the wonderfully nostalgic opening title sequence. These are perfect touches to take us into the 50th anniversary stretch run. As for the new companion JLC has brought a new fantastic energy to the show and to Matt Smith, a shot in the arm at just the right time. All this and I got the Sonic Screwdriver Universal Remote for Christmas, I for one am excited as hell for the upcoming Doctor Who ride for 2013!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:02 p.m. CST

    Am i the Only One that Thinks Merlin will show up

    by bauerpowerhour24

    in Doctor Who and i feel he will be on Sherlock season 3 how #$@!%!#^&!%& Epic would that Be. Ok on the Serious Side WOW WOW WOW WO JLC IS like insane hot. hate to say i already know i am going to hate this whole train wreck mess Moff is going to drag us on you know he is going to make this whole season now about jedi mind tricks and Rubics Cubes just give us stories and this hot companion in a 1 or 2 piece bathing suit For The Love Of Camelot!!!!!!!!!! PS for the BBC since Merlin is gone BBC Give us a Straxxxxxx Show on Saturday Nights like NOW!!!!!!!

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:30 p.m. CST

    @Glenn et al. - missing the point

    by veteran_of_mu

    Why do we have 2 different kinds of cracks? Why do we have 3 different kinds of silence? Why did Amy record a message to tell herself to stop the Doctor investigating Starship UK? Why did Amy forget the Daleks when they were an intrinsic part of the history of WW2? Why in FAS did the doctor think the duck pond was a more important anomaly than Amy forgetting the daleks - and what was that weird noise when he drew a circle in the air with his finger? Why in TEH duck pond scene did the Doctor grab his chest in pain and say it was too soon? Why did Rory have a 1990 staff card *before* Amy recreated him as a Roman centurion? If it's a production error why did the camera linger on it in particular? Why did Rory keep dying and getting recreated mysteriously? If Amy was recreating him ... why? Why are the anglican marines are allied with the Silence when the Silence appear to be opposing the doctor and the anglicans appear to be aiding him? If they're part of the Alliance, why weren't they helping to stuff the Doc into the Pandorica? Why can Amy remember things back the way she wants? Why, when we saw the DL reflected in the Tardis console *after* the BS psychic pollen was thrown out the door, was the DL so interested in Amy? Why does Amy so easily accept that she will never get to mother her child? Why wouldn't River have simply asked one of the many people aware of Kovarian - Maldovar for instance - to say that Kovarian had programmed the suit over which River had no control? Why not simply show the *same* shot of the cards - much easier than building a card house a second time - no? Why is it important to the plot that Amy not be able to have children after Melody? Why is Kovarian in particular motivated to fight the doctor? It would have been trivial to provide a plot point to explain it. Make Lorna Bucket her daughter or mother. Make Kovarian be allied with Omega or the Master. But make it something - anything - that makes her more than just another sock puppet. As for TGWW - aw, heck, you missed so much I can't even ask why yet. Next post. But the point is: Why any of this? If it's all just red herrings with no payoff ever planned then ... why that?

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:32 p.m. CST

    Well that was....Something.

    by cerberus

    I'm torn. I have always viewed Dr Who as a really good show trapped under a lot of bad stuff. Unfortunatley the bad stuff is what everyone seems to like. I really want to tear into it like I would have torn into a bad episode of Star Trek, BSG or Fringe but this is kid's show and that would be wrong. How mean can you be when the commercial breaks are filled with toys? I always have to watch this show in neutral. Is it bad? No. Is it good? No. It's just....there. Which is kind of the point of Dr Who. It's there, nevermind if it's bad or good, it's still there and that means something. It means that it's still there. It just exist as a jumping off point. It exist for the miles of fanfiction your writing. For all the Half-Assed-Theories or HATS you make up that are more amusing than the show itself. For the action figures you buy. For you to cosplay as. For you to watch with your kids. Make no mistake your kids don't watch this show with YOU, nor do you watch it TOGETHER. Sitting in the same room as them doesn't count as TOGETHER. You watch it with THEM. And there is nothing wrong with that, but it just feels like Dr Who continues to do nothing to make itself worthy of it's fandom. I really wish that The Prisoner or Blakes Seven were the shows that really took off. Could you imagine if Blake's Seven turned out to be just as big as Star Trek? Can you imagine those two shows pushing eachother? It would have been so much better for you if those were the shows that got all the oxygen and Who would be free to be the kid show that it is. But Who was the one that took off, which is kind of like raising the white flag of defeat. It was like finding a way to be taken seriously in the least serious way possible. Meanwhile shows like Blake's Seven and The Prisoner serve as a greasy spoon or a rest stop before you get back on the Who Highway.

  • His character just seemed like an evil half-assed version of his 9th Doctor from the webisode. He was actually better as the 10th Doctor in that children of need special from way back when.

  • There's probably thousands of 20 year olds out there that started with Christopher Eccleston 8 years ago when they were 12 who're probably embarrassed by the show now that would still be loyal fans if they'd followed the Potter Model. Of course here in the states we don't have that problem. I've never looked on Doctor Who as a children's program but I can see how you guys would see it that way.

  • Dec. 25, 2012, 11:56 p.m. CST

    The Girl Who Waited & HAT #749

    by veteran_of_mu

    The Girl Who Waited was an extremely peculiar episode. It becomes more peculiar the more closely you watch it. Here's a summary for those who have never paused through it: After Amy loses her phone, the Doc tells her where it is. Because of the lost phone Amy winds up going with the red waterfall room. No doubt because of her hair. The Doctor controls what happens next. He presses the green button on the time lens which goes "squeee ..." and the green button is lit. Amy's image appears and they converse. Then you don't see the Doc's hands so you don't know what he's doing. But Amy speeds up dramatically. The next time you see the buttons the RED one is lit. The Doc presses it again and Amy slows down again. Doc says, "It's okay I've got you you're fine" and brandishes the Sonic as if it controlled something. Then there's more interference and some screaming and the titles. Then Amy appears to be waiting for the interference to go away. The doc says "gotcha" and stops sonicing. Voila, clear picture. Doc says he "stabilised" it. Green button is glowing again the entire time they talk. The Doc removes the time lens and runs into the TARDIS with it, his fingers on the buttons. No lights are showing on the Lens until it is plugged in, but there is his digital flippy clock prominently flipping through numbers very quickly indeed. And an old magtape rolling. RED means record and GREEN means playback. When the lights on the lens buttons return after the sparks they are prominently RED. When the Doc was rummaging for specs in his toolbox he touches a curious belt with studs and wires, then sets it aside as he hands the Rorycam to Rory. Camera returns to the digital clock flicking very quickly through numbers. Amy interacts with Appleappuchia. When the scene returns to the TARDIS we're watching the digital clock zooming again ... no question the Doc knows how fast time is passing through the lens. And he's laughing ... Rory exits the TARDIS carrying the time lens attached to the aforementioned leather strap. Presumably the wires in the strap power the lens because you can see by its reflection on its leather sleeve that the red light is STILL glowing. Milfamy saves Rory from a hand-bot. RED light is still lit. Rory holds up the time lens to read Amy's lipstick writing. It's still RED. Dialog with the Doctor and Amy. Then another shot of the old magtape rolling in the TARDIS. Then a shot of the younger Amy crying. Doc says he can hear her. Then Rory can see her through the time lens and the button on the lens has turned prominently and unmistakably GREEN. It's playing back. Doc's magtape must have recorded every moment of the 36 years, 3 months, 4 days. He know knew EXACTLY what he's doing. Rory asks Milfamy to help. She refuses. Time Lens button is RED again. Rory holds up the time lens and presses the buttons himself. "Look me in the face and say it now". Lens button turns from RED to GREEN and young Amy converses with Milfamy. Amy declares she's going to pull time apart for Rory. Scene cuts back to Doc in the TARDIS. He's hovering over the magtape recorder which is still spinning. He has it rigged up to the Time Rotor with wires. Rory's carrying the Time Lens again and it's RED again. We see young Amy through the Lens which is green again. Doc has Rory jigger the time regulator. Blue into the red, green into the blue, leave the red hanging, don't touch anything yellow. This manipulation is the point of the entire adventure. Rory throws lever 3 and both the Time Lens and the magtape explode in sparks. Rory and his wives make their way to the gallery. Rory asks if they can just teleport in. Milfamy says, "it's not a teleport, it's a time jump". Amy objects, "you can't jump within the same time stream". Milfamy looks startled that Amy knows this and says, "Yes". Amy smiles as if this is some kind of relevant response. Then Milfamy asks Rory how many games of doctors and nurses they've played. Amy ... as a doctor? How to make sense of all this? The Doc is clearly going to enormous trouble to get Rory to manipulate the time regulator. Why? Here's where the HAT starts. It so happens that I have spent quite a lot of years working professionally as a programmer. We old programmers used to do a lot of manipulating of time streams. Well, we called them bit streams or text streams, but they're much the same thing. Causality is important and we learned to respect it the hard way, because otherwise we dealt with the most excruciating bugs. We would have programs that generated streams and other programs that stored them and others that duplicated and redirected and interpreted them. And we'd bolt all these streams and programs together with things we called pipes and filters. You could even pipe a stream to a device. And one of the most fun devices you could pipe a stream to was called /dev/null. The null device that simply throws the contents of the stream away. Just like how in TGWW Doc told Rory to ~Leave the red loose ...~ I think the Doc has ruthlessly manipulated Amy and Rory into constructing a temporal disintegrator. Blue [TARDIS tape device] into Red, Green into Blue, leave the Red loose. Meaning anyone who lands in young Amy's original Green stream is going to get piped directly to /dev/null now. No Appleappuchia, no hand-bots, just gone. Remember the Doc at the start of the episode using the Sonic to lock on to Amy's time stream. The small act of vandalism that triggers the small-act-of-vandalism alarm. When the Doc attached the time lens to the TARDIS console he says it is locked on to Amy's stream permanently. The result is quite a weapon. It doesn't kill people. It just sends them to the green stream that pipes them directly into /dev/null. Just like the cracks, it makes things didn't happen. To use it you need only deliver these things to the green end of the pipe. Which is why the Doc no longer needs the time lens or the magtape - both of which exploded when Rory activated the time regulator. The Doc has the temporal coordinates of the green end of this pipe stored in his sonic. And when he uses it the Sonic turns Red just like the pretty lights on the lens. The Red Setting is the Doc's Ultimate Weapon. Assuming Moff ever pays off on it all ...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:02 a.m. CST

    Good episode but there better be a payoff.

    by Chopper

    There were 6 seasons of Lost that eventually led to no payoff. Every Moffat season has led to little to no payoff. That's gotta stop. Looks like this season will be dominated by an arching plot. Ughh don't know how to feel about that. Thank god there were no Daleks in that season preview either.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:10 a.m. CST

    thecomedian-they dont have to do that.

    by cerberus

    The reason why is that they can simply replace the older folks with younger folks. Plus some adults are never going to move on which is a bonus. That is what a healhy franchise like Who is supposed to do.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:15 a.m. CST

    A Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all here (and absent)

    by gotilk

    I know I have been absent for the most part, but you have all been in my thoughts. Life has been messier than expected, but I remain optimistic. I love you all and hope to see you again soon, regularly.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:24 a.m. CST


    by cerberus

    I know that these things are called HATS for a reason. But some of these things are so out there that it goes beyond being a HAT. It starts to feel like less of a HAT and more like wishful thinking.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:54 a.m. CST

    Dr Who illicts two distinct reactions from me...

    by Dancingforever

    The first is severe emotion. I can't have other people around when I watch the show. I have to be alone and digest every detail of it, watching it sometimes again and again. The Christmas special was light on that, but after the absolute fucking train wreck Merlin was, subtle was better. The second thing this show does is horn me right up. Now the last few season we were treated to the wonderful Amy Pond who i found myself in countless cuckold and femdom fantasies with, but this new companion is really something. Tits/JLC is already a well established boner machine from Who and beyond. This a saucy women who likes to get naked, flirt with Dr Who, and no doubt a reverse cowgirl specialist. As the new season of Who prepares to start in 2013, I feel great optimism for what we will see. I was tentative about how things were going to go with Amy gone, but after seeing the Christmas episode I am fully vested for Tits on the Tardis in 2013!

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:21 a.m. CST


    by veteran_of_mu

    Heck, I don't know. Maybe TGWW doesn't mean anything at all. Maybe it's just not supposed to mean anything. Could be. As to whether it's a HAT or not - it's certainly missing half its arse, so I can't think why it doesn't qualify.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:21 a.m. CST

    a bit less Lovecraftian I think, that Great Intelligence

    by Kathryn Gail

    So now the Great Intelligence is a parasite that mirrors other creatures rather than a Lovecraftian entity from before time (as in classic Who) (which I've only read about but not seen available fragments or audio versioin)? But I liked the very poignant implication that its plans were so dire because it was reflecting Dr. Simeon's bitter childhood, but for the very same reason its objectives were ridiculous (a child's revenge-scenario world of ice people) and. . . I know some viewers felt the Crying Family Maneuver was a bit much, but I just figured the GI's psychic field was picking up sadness just as it had picked up thoughts about snowmen, and maybe even that Clara had caught on to this and relinquished her will to live in order to save everyone else (by inducing grief, knowing her employer had a crush on her and the children and maid were very emotional) just as she did in her Dalek incarnation. Although. . . wouldn't the GI's psychic field then also have picked up a lot of Christmas celebrations and who knows what else?? Surely not everyone was thinking about snowmen? But never mind, it was too good a story to be ruined by Other nicely-handled touches: - on the roof, Clara had that blatantly Mary Poppins moment of a governess ascending [the TARDIS stairs] umbrella in hand, but it was done with such a clean, dry touch that it wasn't repugnant at all but actually felt clever - they kept mentioning Victorian values, and Captain Latimer was clearly less than 24 hours away from the classic Victorian value of test driving the governess (after an appropriate period of rather histrionic moral distress), which Clara seemed poised to use to her advantage to jump up a couple classes had the Doctor not appeared

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:24 a.m. CST

    oops-- I meant--

    by Kathryn Gail

    ~too good an episode to be ruined by overthinking details~ (but I apparently hit reply too soon)

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:56 a.m. CST


    by bill AHO

    Clara must be a early version of River Song before she loses her regeneration and before she is brainwashed. Clara = River

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 2:04 a.m. CST

    doCtOr whO

    by Dasinfogod

    What will Clara Oswin Oswald's name be in the next episode? How many episodes are left this series? Moffat has used two Os and a C of his name. If the next re-generation of Jenna-Louise Coleman's character has a name that starts with a D, T, O, W, or H, then I'm guessing that she is a Watcher/Valeyard/Whatever incarnation of The Doctor, or perhaps even Number Twelve. The show has a long history of using anagrams and playing word games, and this Clara Oswin Oswald name is too convoluted to just be a coincidence. My two cents. We'll see...

  • Also, really don't like the new interior--reminds me of the American Fox Movie interior. And that new theme was pretty atrocious. Too many Dr. Who jokes and he's very kissy this episode... Grem-

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 3:01 a.m. CST

    All in all that was a pretty good episode...

    by Gremlin517

    Most of the dumb stuff was at the beginning and once it got going it really took off. So that's nice, but I can do with less of of the cleverness. But those cybermen are looking pretty cool and scary again!

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 3:34 a.m. CST

    The problem with this episode of Doctor Who is..

    by migmog

    There actually isn't one and i meant that in every way. The villain was under developed I didn't feel the sense of threat I should have Already love the new companion she has the vibe of a sexy Blue Peter presenter the type that young men would hang off every word from and their fathers' would have to be nudged to avert their stare Lots of comedic value meant crucially non Who regulars would love it too. All in all the questions posed are intriguing perhaps the new series will add context to this offering. Dr Who is truly the best of British: happily driving down the middle of the road without being mediocre

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5 a.m. CST

    .......fetid christmas pudding!!!!

    by Bradly Durant

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:09 a.m. CST

    Loved it! Most entertaining thing I watched in ages..

    by paul cook

    Loved the nods to the past, new titles and the Tardis reveal was great. Really looking forward to the new season.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:33 a.m. CST

    @seeker7 Re: Sherlock

    by Octavian

    I'm not having a go at its quality, I'm having a go at the wholesale, virtually uncredited theft of Conan Doyle's icon of British literature. It cannot be a coincidence that the great parts of Sherlock are straight out of canon while the convoluted smart-arsery are straight out of Moffat's well thumbed "Big Book of Will This Do?" You don't need to telegraph Mycroft to notice that. By the way, and for those who have only just risen from the pit, the Royal Mail announced Who stamps for the 50th. Here... Very nice.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:41 a.m. CST

    I'm amazed at the criticism

    by Peter

    This was modern Doctor Who firing on all cylinders. A witty, imaginative script. Sparkling performances. Great production design. Caratacus - I appreciate the depth to which you analyse previous episodes of the show, but you've read far more into it than was originally intended by the production team. You don't need resolution on the majority of your outstanding questions; fill in the gaps yourself. Example: there is no significance at all to the duck pond stuff in 'The Eleventh House' and the dating of Rory's badge is similarly insignificant. It means nothing. Really! This is a Christmas episode of Who. Expect cheesy conclusions where love/tears/children's laughter/faith saves the day. That's what the audience expects and wants; life affirming pleasantness on Christmas night. Good will to all men. Adjust your expectations. With that one caveat, I really think this was a great episode. Jenna-Louise Coleman sparkles on-screen, immediately overshadowing previous assistants. The light story was well written and watched the whole thing with a silly smile on my face, thoroughly entertained. The new title sequence and music were pleasingly retro and the new Tardis interior was given a quite stunning introduction. For this jaded 42-year-old, The Snowmen was a wonderful fairy-tale that shone bright amongst the Christmas TV schedule. Bravo! And the preview for the next batch of episodes looks rather thrilling, too. (Look, I'd love for Who, overall, to be a little darker, more mature and frightening, but then I grew up, as others have mentioned, during the Hinchcliffe period. I've let go of that and just accepted that it needs to reinvent itself every so often. Like Skyfall, this Autumn, this episode felt like it did the requisite heavy lifting to move the series forward in a very convincing way.)

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:43 a.m. CST



    I think it's time you moved on, my friend. This show obviously no longer provides whatever entertainment you originally found in it. Come back in a few years when everything is new again. It's much better than becoming a bitter old Scrooge who sits in his tower shouting "Fail!" at the show most of us here still love.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:56 a.m. CST


    by Timmid

    Whilst I liked the Tardis in a cloud and slight fairy tale aspect, I am not buying that this was a significant momentum driver or game changer. This felt like more of the same from Moffatt, promising things that don't get delivered. And whilst the first episode of Sherlock was incredibly special tv, it quickly went downhill for me. Unfortunately Moff is somebody who doesn't appear to have a lot in his locker. He can put out some moments of genius but these are outweighed by the drab and the ridiculous and stories that don't live up to their portents. Remember the Doctor falling further than he'd ever fallen before after his greatest victory. What a total non event that was.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:14 a.m. CST

    While I enjoyed this Xmas episode...

    by berksbear

    ...more than the last few, am I the only person who is getting fed up with the Doctor's companions being cosmic enigmas? I loved JLC and think she would have been great as a forward-thinking, highly intelligent Victorian woman. I miss the days when it was air-stewardess, a teacher or even someone from another was nice that they weren't a riddle that needed to be solved every series! Obviously Moff has a long plan regarding Clara/Oswin but, after that, PLEASE could we go back to having a companion who is not more of a mystery than the Doctor himself?

  • 50th Anniversary stamps !

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:29 a.m. CST

    How The Doctor Puppet Saved Christmas

    by Captain Howdy

    An animated, snow-based Time Lord tale...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:53 a.m. CST

    Just reading back some of the comments...

    by dj_bollocks

    Blimey... looks like some of you only got socks and pants for Christmas... As a Christmas episode my expectations were suitably lowered and went in and it was a great Christmas TV episode not just a great Doctor Who episode. The tide has definitely turned in these Docbacks over the seasons... Be careful what you wish for in a new show runner... For all the bad things that in your opinions they may have done RTD and The Moff have a pretty good batting rate for knocking it out of the park... And with no offence intended to anyone, if some of the HAT's on here ended up on screen the show would most likely be cancelled within a few years... I'm off to watch it again with a nice G&T and some Twiglets... Hope Santa got you a Toblerone or some Jelly Babies...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:56 a.m. CST

    You're right on, CB.

    by veteran_of_mu

    I could feel that as I was writing my criticism. See, I actually did enjoy this episode for much of the same reasons everyone else here has indicated. JLC sparkled. Strax, Vastra and Jenny were perfectly realised. Smith sold it well - as he ever does. It was all in all a lovely Christmas episode for 99% of viewers and I'm very glad it was. It delivered. What I'm cheesed off about really doesn't matter. Not even a little bit. Except to me. And that's cool. What it means is, that something else is calling me. I need something deeper, bigger, rounder, more ironic, more interconnected and more passionate than what I can reasonably expect from DW. In fact, right now, so far as I can tell, what I want is more than I can reasonably expect from any fiction anywhere. What I'm hearing is the call that we all must feel eventually, the call to create something new. I've felt it before, in other spheres, and always suspected it must come eventually in this one. It is time to stop criticising and start writing. I know the premise I must start with. And it is not time travel. Strictly speaking it isn't even space travel, at least not in the rather dull FTL sense. It is something else. Something I'd like to foreshadow just a little bit. Humanity has already grown beyond the scope of an individual mind. The external nervous system we call the Internet has grown to consume almost all literate people on the planet. It is not, itself, self-aware, except in those brief moments where one or another individual reflects on it. As I am doing now. Imagine, then, the arrival of an archive of intelligences from many millions of worlds. Not in the form of alien beings, though this archive would contain all the information necessary for us to re-create same if we desired. But imagine that relativistic distances prevent a star-spanning empire from interacting in real time - there being no real time in the usual sense at these scales. And then ... imagine what would happen on Earth if we were to learn that every single one of these alien intelligences is now extinct. Whether from ecological collapse, internal warfare, or simple stagnation, each had their ascendancy for an aeon or several and then, as if by some cosmic law, winked out. Shortly after the arrival of the archive. Now posit that this archive automatically adapts and makes itself accessible through out Internet. As augmented reality technologies become available we can see and interact with all the aliens as if they really were here. And very few of them are willing to believe that they are merely historical simulations. Most of them believe quite seriously that we are simulations while they themselves are real. We would possess no means of proving otherwise to them. And after just a little while, we would have no way of knowing whether they might not be right. What proves to you that you are real? Anyway I think that's a little piece of what I'm going to write about. I won't really leave this place behind - because it is far too nice a place to leave. But I shall stop trying to interact as if it was fair to assume someone else is in my tree. Indeed it must be high or low, and it doesn't matter which. Thanks for the heads up, CB, very helpful.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 7:28 a.m. CST

    Accepting DW for what it is...

    by Peter

    ...a whimsical fantasy series written like a classic screwball comedy by way of Douglas Adams. It's never going to have the depth of good literary science fiction. As dj_testicles pointed out, building something of that intricacy would likely alienate the mainstream audience. Good grief - Who already gets bashed for being too complex, though Mr Moffat has rightfully dismissed such criticisms. Personally, I loved the show best when it was a psychological horror story every week, but I find plenty to enjoy now and I'm glad the Doctor is still with us. Long may it last!

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 7:30 a.m. CST

    Maybe The Moff has a great plan for The Great Intelligence...?

    by wtriker1701

    And maybe this was his plan after all? Throwing everything in but the kitchen sink? Cracks, Ponds, Silents, Big Bangs, Weeping Angels? Maybe the GI is behind some of it? The Oldest Question In The Universe! Silence (Silents?) will fall! Something biblical? Something Lovecraftian? Maybe I'm just overthinking things... but still won't give up thinking, that there's a binding structure behind Moffat's run.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 7:30 a.m. CST

    caractacuspotts and others..

    by HornOrSilk

    First, I do have many problems with Doctor Who since it came back with RTD. And while I think many things should not, need not, be done (all the soap/sex connections), and the show could, would be superior if it followed classical Who's non-sexuality, I know we don't have that. When I watch New Who, I watch it under the context of New Who, with the tropes and styles we expect with it. I wish we could have old Who style with New Who budget and stories (which would allow the stories become a bit more complex and detailed, as more questions would be answered) but I know we don't get it. And I don't judge the Doctor or stories based upon my wishes in that regard (though sometimes, I do). I wish we didn't have a companion always trying to snog the Doctor and the Doctor somewhat accepting of it. I can understand it from time to time, but not all the time. But I think we can thank the New Adventures for this! Yet, I still see the show I love in the midst of these, and I look at the show in relation to what is on today. And here, I think the mysteries -- even if they don't always pan out -- are what make the show something beyond the norm. So I appreciate and like them. They make the characters matter beyond the stories, and so the question is not the plot, but what will the characters do next. Aristotle would be proud.

  • It would be interesting, but I don't see it happening. But would be an interesting way to tie everything together. The GI became the "Valeyard" so to speak, and constantly tries to incarnate itself.... in one form (Meglos) or another (Valeyard, Dream Lord).. would be wild.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8 a.m. CST

    OMG!!! Called it!!! *SPOILERS WARNING*

    by tangcameo

    Multiple Oswins!!!! I wonder if the one we see at the end will be a permanent one or will she keep showing up in every time and place he visits.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:13 a.m. CST

    Doctor Who: Dark Eyes Off the Cuff Review

    by HornOrSilk

    This is my quick review of the Big Finish Dark Eyes Box Set, which I just finished yesterday. It's a stream-of-consciousness, off the cuff review. I think the DocBacks should have reviews of the BF audios, since they are new Who with original cast members. It will be something new, fresh, for the DocBackers. So I will probably do these quick reviews as I listen to new stories and add them here. Dark Eyes really is a cross between old and new Who. It has all kinds of nods to the Time War to come, and yet the eighth Doctor ultimately considers it all bunk. And it is because he doesn't believe it he is able to get through this story. The irony of this is clearly a part of the story itself. The Doctor, having last his great-grandson and his companion, to the Daleks, has more or less given up. He wants to see the end of the universe to get a new perspective. But he isn't allowed to see it -- he is intercepted by another Time Lord, one he knows, one which is very manipulative, and the Doctor is told he is not allowed to see the end, but he can have a little hope instead. And so the Doctor finds himself sent back to the first World War, to find himself caught in its tragedies, until he meets his new companion (for how long?) Molly and finds himself embedded in a Dalek plan to destroy all the Time Lords. The box set is really one long story like the Daleks Masterplan: the story goes on, but with a few side adventures tied to the story itself. In the middle of it he finds himself in an illusory world where the Daleks, after surviving a war with the Daleks, become good and try to become Kaleds again. The Doctor, of course, doesn't buy it, and it isn't real -- but the journey through that section might be best described as a deconstruction of the Time War itself. In the end, the Doctor finds himself in the middle of a plot to destroy the Time Lords (or is it the Daleks), all the while trying to find out who and what his companion, Molly O'sullivan, is. The story is enjoyable but a bit long in the middle. I think it would be good as 3 CDS instead of the 4 we get. Nonetheless, it does highlight a new attitude for the 8th Doctor, and one which, somehow, ties with the 11th Doctor and the Doctor's ability to want to retire. The Snowmen resolves with quicker, perhaps too quick, while Dark Eyes resolves it slower, too slow. Yet comparing the two, we get a sense of Old Who vs New Who sensibilities, and while I like the mysterious elements of Moff-Who, Old Who still reigns supreme here.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:13 a.m. CST

    caractacuspotts round 2

    by spathos

    Look, almost all of these are internally consistent if you pay attention, but you have to accept that some of these aren't as much a limitation on the writing, as they are a limitation of the medium (e.g. TV vs. a novel or really long comic) where if you explain every last detail you completely derail the action going on screen. >Why do we have 2 different kinds of cracks? We have one kind of crack, but it behaves differently in events that happen towards the beginning of the season, where they allow travel from one point to the other, and the end of the season, where they don't. But in both cases, they appear to also push objects and people out of time and they're erased from existence. Presumably, this has to do with the more complete breakdown of reality towards the end of the season. >Why do we have 3 different kinds of silence? We don't know because the Doctor doesn't know everything but that doesn't make it a plot hole. >Why did Amy record a message to tell herself to stop the Doctor investigating Starship UK? As mentioned towards the end of the episode, she thought he would get all dark and angry if he knew the truth about starship UK. Better to just GTFO. >Why did Amy forget the Daleks when they were an intrinsic part of the history of WW2? Because they were erased from existence by the cracks in time. > Why in FAS did the doctor think the duck pond was a more important anomaly than Amy forgetting the Daleks. The anomaly wasn't important, the fact that she remembers the ducks, even vaguely, was very important as no one else remembers things that are erased from existence. The noise is just a silly sound effect they added. >Why in TEH duck pond scene did the Doctor grab his chest in pain and say it was too soon? Because he wasn't completely done regenerating yet. This is consistent with even old school DW (Castravalva, etc.). >Staff card, dying and coming back, etc. Also, the staff card may have been a mistake, or a red herring that they didn't follow up on. It's not worth wasting screen time on. His dying alot and coming back was partly a quirk of the writing staff, but her remembering him was just a larger extension of the duck pond thing. Re: Anglican Marines, the marines weren't helping the Doctor, the Doctor was helping them with their Angel problem, and the reason why he was helping was because River asked him to, but she needed to sort of trick him by getting a version of him that didn't know much about the Silence. They weren't stuffing him into the Pandorica because it was from thousands of years in their past and they didn't exist at the time (though other aliens did). Re: Kovaria, I think you're wrong about it being a throwaway line. There's no reason to tie her into any previous line of Who as the Silence are separate from them so you'd end up having to write an entire back story for a character whose job is to be menacing and mysterious. It'd be worth it for a comic or novel, or maybe a 22 episode TV show, but not for a 12 episode series.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:14 a.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    From what I guess, we will see more deaths and yet we will see some form(s) also joining him in the TARDIS. It's as if the universe created her as his ultimate companion: if she dies, will be brought back to life, similar to the snowmen we saw last night.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:25 a.m. CST

    but i promise you we're going to take over television...

    by dj_bollocks

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:33 a.m. CST

    So Oswin's the new "Kenny" from "South Park"?

    by obijuanmartinez

    OMG - You killed Oswin! YOU BASTARDS!

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:34 a.m. CST

    Enjoyed the episode! Much better than last year's!

    by spathos

    I loved the new companion even though I'm wary about the mysterious death and time loopy stuff they threw in there. The other goodie lead characters were very cool and entertaining and even the children were interesting and did a credible job. The bits with the Sontaran were very funny. On the down side, I thought the plot resolution was very cheesy and they should have just had him win the battle against the (not terribly tough) snow globe and still have Clara die. Victorian tragedy and all that. They could even have had the snow turn into tears if they wanted and have the time-loopy stuff show up in much the same way. They could have used with another half an hour to flesh out the villains and it would have been nearly perfect Who. And really that's been the main gripe with Moffat DW is they end up trying to stuff in a season's worth of cleverness in a 12 episode series and some of it just sort of falls out of the box. I think it's a budget problem as much as anything since they've decided to have flagship level talent and effects but can't afford to give them enough space to work with and tell a full story. Other people have much different problems with Moffat and even RTD-era writing, but I that's my take on it.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:35 a.m. CST

    But seriously, I'm with @dj_bollocks on this one - X-Mas episode was...

    by obijuanmartinez

    ...lively and entertaining. Usually don't go in for a lot of the gag stuff, but Strax had me giggling for sure, and the Doc's heaping abuse on was actually pretty funny stuff - channeling a bit of Tom Baker. Nice story. Nice McKellen cameo too. Hope we get Yeti down the road somewhere...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:36 a.m. CST

    Oh...and nice to see another former Doc (RE Grant) in action...

    by obijuanmartinez

    ...very creepy. Almost had me wanting him as The Tall Man in a "Phantasm" reboot there. Could just about hear him saying "Boooooooooy..."

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:40 a.m. CST


    by HornOrSilk

    There should be no Phantasm reboot. But a continuation. No one can replace Angus Scrimm. But a new villain would work.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:45 a.m. CST


    by Rechar


  • It really isn't as often as some here think. It is true he wrote what I consider to be amongst the very greatest Who tales of all in The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances. Almost eight years ago. Since then we have seen glimpses of that greatness, but heard him tell us how marvellous he is many, many times more. Also, let me say that a plotline which doesn't get resolved isn't a mystery. It's just more stuff thrown at the wall to see what sticks. A mystery which is never resolved is an annoyance, and to hope that he might revisit it sometime during 2015 is laughable. There are far, far too many instances in Moffat Who where we have been led up the garden path expecting some great revelation where there isn't one, and more to the point almost certainly never was one. Moffat's hyperbole will do for him. He needs to shut up and let his scripts do the talking, you know, like other writers do. He has been given dominion over Doctor Who, Tintin and Sherlock Holmes in the last few years and has ruthlessly borrowed from the greats who created those cornerstones of popular culture, all the while telling us how clever he is for doing it. It's like getting burgled and the guy responsible calls you to say how he picked the lock on the upstairs window. This BS Moffat threw out about last night's episode being a game changer. What bollocks. It was not discernibly different to the last few Xmas specials. A dark fairytale aimed at an early evening family audience. That's what the Beeb wants and that is what it gets. I have a theory that the reason Smith started to get more manic in the last couple of series is because he was overcompensating for the scripts. If Moffat wants to do an arc then do one. A proper one. Look at how RTDs Bad Wolf resolved itself. Beginning, middle, end. A solid idea well told. Everything tied up with a regeneration to top it off. These days there is a lot more "beginning, middle.. is that the end?" about it. Too many people are attributing to genius what is in fact just writer's flim-flam. Personally, I have found it tedious for three years or so. The hope remains. We got glimpses of what Who could be when Gaiman wrote that terrific episode. This year let's have a little less blind Moffat worship, and a little more taut storytelling.

  • For those who have the S6 entire season DVD's there are 4 short segments that show the Doctor off adventuring with River while Amy & Rory sleep. In the last ep of the 4 a future version of River & the Doctor are going to The Singing Towers of Darillium--her last "date" with him prior to the Library episodes. When the younger Doc asks the older version of himself if its "that time"(or something along those lines), if I'm remembering correctly the older Doc replies : "Spoilers" So--it may or may not have "happened" yet, but I couldnt help but wonder since he and Clara played "smoochy" & he never mentioned that he was married at any point in the episode--presuming that wedding on top of the Pyramid "counted" as a real wedding , that is. I know there are a lot of folks who dislike River, but I love the character, and would want to see a proper resolution to her storyline, rather than her just being gone.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 9:55 a.m. CST

    Loved It

    by Mr Underhill

    Watched the episode with the family and thought this was a great TV: Funny; moving; exciting, with an undercurrent that will have been scary for younger viewers. This has laid various threads that will be played upon over the next few years. I loved the fact that rather then Moffat dispelling the mystery surrounding Oswin he deepened it.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 10:29 a.m. CST

    so the doctor has a sontaran as a butler ?

    by Woodrow_Wilson_Smith

    Is that what this show has become? I prefer classic who without the idiotic shit

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 10:37 a.m. CST

    My own personal half-assed Oswin theory...

    by Stegman84

    Oswin is actually the Ganger Doctor, playing some sort of game with the real Doctor. Perhaps as a means to prove his own superiority, earning (in his own mind) the right to take The Doctor's place in the universe as a result. After all, we know that a Doctor alone tends to turn a bit dark in nature, and the gangers were a bit unstable to begin with, so... Oh, and it is the Ganger Doctor who ultimately becomes the Valeyard, not the regular Doctor. Or not, probably.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 11:02 a.m. CST

    Bah Humbug

    by Philvis

    Was not entertained or impressed. Worst of any of the recent Christmas specials I have seen. Waste of an episode.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 11:43 a.m. CST

    It's not like Doctor Who to be about alien invasions...

    by Gary Makin

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 11:45 a.m. CST


    by Gary Makin

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 11:58 a.m. CST

    the only reason the doctor ran off like that...

    by captain_kirk

    was to see if he could do a three way with two oswins.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, noon CST

    Do you not have a favourite holiday destination gmakin ?

    by dj_bollocks

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:03 p.m. CST

    Doctor's new companion....hurrrmmmmm

    by WalterKovacs

    Nice box...smaller on the outside. Is that what they're saying about me now? R

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:11 p.m. CST

    Only 7.6 million... guess the time change hurt it a little...

    by dj_bollocks

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:19 p.m. CST

    Well, I guess we won't see River again... not even a glimps

    by wtriker1701

    of her in the trailer for the rest of the season... I'm also feeling sorry, that The Singing Towers of Darillium didn't make it into an actual episode. I think, it would have been a proper (s)ending for her run. But I said so in an earlier Docback...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:27 p.m. CST

    These Episodes should be shown on Christmas Eve

    by ThrowMeTheIdol

    It's a much more festive day than actual Christmas day. By the time this kind of things air, the whole spirit is fast fading.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:36 p.m. CST

    by furnari5

    The Doctor’s interaction with Jenna-Louise-Coleman’s character is very different than we’ve seen in previous Doctor/companion dynamics.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 12:49 p.m. CST

    Who newbie (sort of)

    by rben

    I get BBC America now and watched a Who marathon leading to "The Snowmen". Really hadn't seen but mere moments of the more recent Who since the Tom Baker years but pretty much got sucked into it. They had another Who marathon today and i DVR'd it so i could bypass the commericials later (cheeky devil..). I have off thursday too and if the beeb has another marathon tomorrow i'll be in hog heaven (wouldn't mind if they showed the Tennant ones and other doctors but so far it looks like Matt the whole way.) Lotta cool science fiction concepts thrown around. Me likey. The Dalak episode (the ending) was amazing.. then i saw the same actress in "Snowmen". Yes! More please!

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:09 p.m. CST

    @hornorsilk I think the Doctor will... *SPOILERS*

    by tangcameo

    ...just keep running into Oswins across time and space. Even if he shuts his eyes and spins the dials and randomly sends the Tardis somewhere, he'll still bump into her, even if he picks a planet devoid of humans and incapable of sustaining human life, he'll find her there. As if the Universe (the Great Intelligence?) is leaving a trail of Oswin-flavoured (my new favourite flavour) breadcrumbs to lead him to somewhere or maybe some lesson he needs to learn. Maybe that the Universe doesn't bargain or care but there is still beautiful symmetry in it.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:46 p.m. CST

    Don`t care anymore. That was everything wrong possible.

    by higgledyhiggles

    Constant superfast `witty` banter that foes nowhere. Over melodramatic music cues telegraphing every moment. A lesbian couple, why ? Why not. Comedy sidekick. Check. Say `Doctor Who ?` every 5 minutes. I honestly can`t imagine a more boring question sice if it`s ever answered the whole series will lose any possible point of existin. At the end write yourself into a corner and make up some bullcrap `love saved the day` ending so nothing meant anything or had any weight to it. Seriously ? If this is how it can resolve then how does anything have any possible danger, weight, suspense ? Just hit the emotion button and all`s fine. Horse-crap of the highest order and I`m officially done with it.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:47 p.m. CST

    I'm now trying to make up Rani anagrams of Clara Oswin Oswald...

    by dj_bollocks

    I'm HAT-ing...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:47 p.m. CST

    tangcameo - but from the trailer

    by HornOrSilk

    She seems to actually travel in the TARDIS. I don't think she dies every story. I think she dies a few times. But I also think her 11th death might be "the fall of the eleventh." It's not the Doctor's death, but the fall of the 11th Clara.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 1:53 p.m. CST


    by dj_bollocks

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 2:01 p.m. CST


    by dj_bollocks

  • 'Regenerations Disabled'<p> Why? Because it suits the plot, implying there is a higher meaning behind it that isn't yet revealed...but in fact, there isn't. <p> Moff has done this in an insane amount of ways and variations during his reign. Someone cited RTD's 'Bad Wolf' motif being self-contained - too right, and it was all the better for it. <p> It took several episodes at least for Rose to get a Key to the Tardis. It was given emotional weight because of this build up. I can't remember if Martha got one but it certainly wasn't in the first couple of episodes. I think Amy did but there wasn't so much of a fanfare. JLC got one with 27 minutes or so. It dilutes the weight of the action just for a scene that's supposed to be dramatic.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 2:35 p.m. CST

    And it's frustrating

    by tomdolan04

    as shows like this require immense amounts of 'leaps of faith' - letting the minor technicalities and minor things go in the greater good of the plot. RTD's better efforts required lots of 'ignore this because it makes no sense or contradicts something else' but I didn't care because emotionally or dramatically it resonated. <p> Unlike that though Moff seems to relish saying 'HEY THIS IS A PLOT POINT' and make continually references to these things - making it harder to 'just let the minor details go' for the greater good of the story because the minor details he throws in are deliberately coy and repetitive to the point of them BECOMING the plot.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 2:39 p.m. CST


    by dj_bollocks

    Rose getting a key after a few episodes is in context in my opinion... Eccleston's Doctor had been travelling on his own for a long unspecified period post Time War - in his opinion he wasn't ready to have a companion until he met Rose, so it's not entirely implausible that he wasn't in any rush to give her a key. I don't recall many if any companions in Old Who getting a key either... Of course you can interpret these things anyway you want... One thing about Old Who is that there wasn't really much reliance on continuity... You could argue that The Key To Time or Trial Of A Timelord were but kinda loosely. These are just the ways that story telling has changed over the years. I'm not a fan of rewriting the rules when it suits (and have been guilty of drinking the haterade in that respect too...) but I just find myself thinking that it's probably best to just ignore the small stuff as it appears The Moff tends to too... I'd describe his story telling as throwing a lot of stuff at the wall but only some of those things actually matter in the grand scheme of it all. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. I'd still say that Moff has more Excellent episodes than RTD, and that for the most part Moff's run is still better than RTD's if only for two reasons... RTD had the chance to reboot from scratch which meant being able to reintroduce ALL the major old school enemies (Daleks, Cybermen, The Master, Davros) - The Moff had to work within that... 2) RTD has written some absolute stinkers his quality control as show runner is far worse than the Moff... Even the worst episodes of his run are for the most part ok, although I wouldn't rush back to watch the pirate episode... (Love & Monsters, Fear Her, Third World War etc...)

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 3:10 p.m. CST


    by tomdolan04

    Oh I'm not saying RTD was amazing. He lead the way into many a stinker as showrunner (although the much maligned 'Fear Her' is one me and the wife like to sit through and I don't know why). <p> However...despite some cheesiness and low marks, when his episodes hit the highs during Seasons 1 - 4, they really sang from the rooftops. Soaring. I'd actually agree Moff's reign has been more consistant, but that also goes in the sense I wouldn't say theres been any soaring highs. Eleventh Hour was pretty satisfying but only serving as an Introduction. Girl Who Waited was very good. Doctors Wife was great. Beyond that, Season 5 and 6 are becoming a bit muddied in my memory. <p> They put too much spotlight on the River / Melody / Silence / Cracks - and with no big payoff after two and a half years, I just have no buy-in for another 'more than meets the eye' Clara when alot of the beats similar to Amys mysterious Crack (dont go there :) And I do like the long game played out over a slow burn. The trouble is - Moffs reign isn't a slow burn. Everythings shouty and running and frantic. <p>

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 3:36 p.m. CST

    We can't say if the Moff's reign is a slow burn or not

    by SgtHowie

    until we see how it goes in the future. I'm not the most avid rewatcher of Who episodes but I think there is still VERY important stuff unresolved from the start of Moffats run. Now the Grand Moff might have no plans to return to that matter, but if he does go there next year then it will be an important story thread strung out over almost four years. This Xmas episode was just ok in my book, nothing special. I'm hoping that when the grand masterplan pays off it will be worthy of the 50th anniversary special.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 3:54 p.m. CST


    by ManEatingFish

    Not in the UK, Christmas Day is the most festive, we have our Christmas Meal at Lunchtime and settle in front of the TV with the family. There is no way they would let it be broadcast in the US on Christmas Eve before the Uk

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 3:57 p.m. CST

    I've brought this up before

    by George

    But I'll say it again. The name "Clara Oswin Oswald" has significant meaning. According to the interwebs, Clara means "famous or bright." Oswin means "God's Friend" and Oswald means "God's Power." These names are very deliberate. Since The Doctor is a sort of God like figure, the name tells you everything you need to know....

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Much Love for the Christmas Special!

    by Evil Chicken

    The chemistry between Clara & the Doctor is, well, Fantastic! The show did a fine job of setting up what is to come. I have theories but they are only spoilerific speculation on my part so I'll keep 'em to myself. I love the direction that things are heading and I'm only upset that we have to wait until APRIL to see if the hunches are true or not.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:03 p.m. CST


    by Octavian

    A story stretched out over four years probably wasn't worth telling. How riveting can it be that even the author can't quite get round to finishing it between Olympic games? The evidence to support the idea Moffat comes up with ideas but struggles to finish them is growing. He over complicates things to a ludicrous degree. Sherlock is a great example of this trait. There's a fine line between being clever and being a smartarse and Moffat crosses that line. He needs someone to tell him "no". It should not be beyond him to take a complete run, introduce the theme, the plots and subplots, dole them out to his co-writers, and tie them up with a nice little bow by episode thirteen. He is after all, as he likes to remind us in between breaths, a wonderful writer.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:05 p.m. CST

    I enjoyed it for the most part

    by chronicallydepressedlemming

    but "*interest emotion here* defeats the bad guys in the end", is getting a bit old and was always mawkish. Let's have some new tricks up your sleeve, eh? Monsters being defeated in a logical way for a change? The Oswin arc is going to hold my interest. I'm finding the idea of a companion that constantly dies and has the Doctor chasing her ancestors through space and time quite intriguing, but I'm guessing she won't be dying any more if she's known as 'the girl who died twice'.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 5:57 p.m. CST

    The 13 ep runs do tie up OK IMO

    by SgtHowie

    Series 5s main plot thread was the mystery about the Pandorica which was explained in the end, and then Series 6 was about how will the Doctor survive being shot dead in episode one, and in episode 13 he does it. IMO adding overlapping layers of complexity on top of the main plot, like River or the Silence or cracks in time, for the loyal viewers to appreciate over several series is a good thing. When [presumably] next year we reach the actual moment where Silence finally must fall, no doubt the episode itself will explain enough to understand the story but it will still be cool for those who remember back to when Prisoner Zero first mentioned it years earlier.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:36 p.m. CST

    An enjoyable special

    by DoctorTom

    This was much better than last year's. Nice new theme for us, with nods to the past. We'll just have to see if Clara Oswin Oswald turns out to be a serial reincarnation where we didn't start with the first one, ore if it's more like different shards of one soul (like inCity of Death), or if Moffat is going to do something more unexpected.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:45 p.m. CST

    Finally saw 2013 teaser trailer. Oh well. Theory blown.

    by tangcameo

    He looks to be too busy trying to keep Third Oswin alive. The woman with the extra large iPad and a view of the UKranian easter egg (its what I call it) saying what she said REALLY blew my theory to bits (unless that's the first episode but I doubt it). Liked the tiny glimpses of Neil's new story, the opposite-Silents (no eyes instead of no mouth), the empty jet plane and no one to fly it not even the Doctor, and whatever that brown alien was (wish I was that close to JLC haha). I don't think she's the Master or a ganger or whatever. I do think she's a trail of breadcrumbs left for the doctor either as a path or a sign.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 6:47 p.m. CST

    Is Dr Who a "gay" show?

    by gumbyandpokey

    I've never seen an episode in my life but watched the Christmas special and the lesbian couple seemed pointless and just inserted as the typical lefty sucker punch that takes you out of the moment. Are there many political moments in Dr Who? I wouldn't enjoy the show if it keeps throwing asides like this in, so I'd like to know if there is a specific political POV being espoused.

  • I'm dead serious with what I said before, I'm really falling hard for Jenny. Granted, I'm certainly in love with JLC even more, she is caaaaarazy adorable, almost exactly my type of girl, but the girl who plays Jenny is extremely cute as well. Even got a cute voice.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 7:48 p.m. CST

    and the "one word game" sequence was awesome

    by TheSeeker7

    I especially loved how Clara just immediately turned the tables on Vastra, and showed how the latter was suddenly getting verbose in her explanation about the doctor, the former pointed out how it clearly meant it was all lies.

  • It's simple, since 1938 is locked off in the current time stream, all the Doctor needs to do is go to 1939 or '40 in the TARDIS, use River's vortex manipulator to get as close to the correct moment as possible, and grab the Ponds. Time can be rewritten! It's possible to go back on one's own timeline, just not advisable. River could have gone back to minutes before they arrived and snagged Amy and Rory before the Angels got them. There are ways around this that would have let the Ponds quietly retire aand have a way to visit later...

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:29 p.m. CST


    by chiwrtr72

    Couldn't you also ask if Dr Who is a Christian show since there is a family that is involved? Or pro-life since there is an orphanage? Maybe anti-water since the villains are snow and ice... Geez.

  • Dec. 26, 2012, 8:32 p.m. CST

    The Snowmen was good, new season looks good also

    by Rebel Scumb

  • Just have the Pond's final appearance be the series 6 finale, the doctor had already decided to let them be and keep them out of harms way, would have been a fine ending for them Although then I guess we wouldn't have had Oswins first death

  • At the very least she's of Time Lord ilk. You read it here first.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 12:30 a.m. CST

    Oswin - classic series

    by Angus Gore

    Interesting how Oswin is being introduced in episodes featuring classic foes - Daleks, now the Great Intelligence. I've no doubt there is something about Oswin that will lead up to the 50th. Just hope it isn't something overwhelmed with cheese. The 'watch me run' reference at the end of the episode brings us back to River who said something similar at the end of FotD ('You watch us run') - which I try not to give any other meaning to because Moffat likes repeating himself - but it does bring to mind that Oswin is rather River-like (well, most all of Moffat's female characters are basically the same. Jenny and Vastra are rare exceptions), and, like River, may have an existence that runs in a funny parallel to his. Is she a warning - another Bad Wolf-type manifestation? We meet her in the past, in the future, anywhere and everywhere. She is always the same - almost as if planted there, like an idea. We're also onto something starting with the nanogene cloud (which creates dalek-zombies), the 'intelligent' snow that 'mimics' (and thus creates), and, later this season, there's 'something in the WiFi' - time will tell if this pays off with Oswin in anyway, but plenty here to at least intrigue. Problem is, I don't trust Moffat to pull off what he starts strong with. There's a lot riding on this season as it slips into the 50th anniversary and fans' expectations are already sky-high. If he drops the ball with Oswin (as he did with Amy and River), no one's going to forgive him.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 4:05 a.m. CST

    Good fun but where is the Gerry Anderson tribute?

    by Peter ORourke

    I liked it and I'm starting to think that with previous producer RTD being Welsh and Mr Moffat being Scottish that there is a certain amount of glee by the pair of them by visiting London with calamity after calamity every Christmas. I'm also wondering where is the Gerry Anderson tribute at this site will ever appear?

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 5:01 a.m. CST

    Re Gerry Anderson tribute

    by SgtHowie

    I just came to AICN to read their tribute. Nothing. I know this site is pretty US centric but it's a poor show to have not even a MENTION almost 24 hours after Gerry's death was announced. Certainly in UK cult circles the guy was a giant, a George Lucas figure to the generation before George Lucas arrived! R.I.P Gerry. Or maybe F.A.B. Gerry would be more fitting. :-)

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 6:01 a.m. CST

    There should be a Gerry Anderson tribute, I agree

    by HornOrSilk

    I know the name, but not really his work. I know of his work, but just never watched it (I'm American). Nonetheless, because of what he has done and its influence, it should be written up. Maybe someone here can write something, and send it in to AIC as a guest post?

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 6:19 a.m. CST


    by Rebel Scumb

    I think there's a good possibility you're right.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 7:07 a.m. CST


    by wtriker1701

    R.I.P. GA!

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 7:24 a.m. CST

    Doctor Who Not Quite Confidential Christmas???

    by wtriker1701

    What's that? I'm going to find out soon - or has anybody seen it?

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 7:26 a.m. CST

    Thunderbirds AND Space 1999!

    by Kathryn Gail

    Here in the U.S., I first saw Thunderbirds (like Doctor Who) on public television when I was grown up and was amazed never to have heard anything about it. If you're reading this and have no idea what we're talking about, this BBC article includes several short vids to get you started. That's right, the whole look of Trey Parker's 2004 Team America was based on this (don't feel bad if you completely missed the reference; discovering it is a lot more work even than classic Who, here!).

  • You poor underprivileged little sods. Your childhoods must have been so empty! Here's a taste of what we watched in civilised countries while you lot were being fed big bird and endless repetitions of the first 10 cardinal numbers: No wonder Americans don't understand the modern world!

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 9:50 a.m. CST

    Clara is basically a living plot device in this episode.

    by spacehog

    And depending on where they go with the character, that's either a complaint or a neat bit of plotting. Why is she a barmaid? So she can meet the Doctor. Remember that the bar is the ROSE and Thorn, likely to attract his attention. Why is she a governess? So she can be further tied to the invasion storyline. Remember that her accent changes with her costume; she is playing a role. Clearly either she is being manipulated by someone else so she can get in with the Doctor, or she herself is angling to meet the Doctor. How else would she know that the one word to get him going again is ''Pond''?

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 9:59 a.m. CST

    @gumbyandpokey: Don't strain yourself, old son. Move on...

    by obijuanmartinez


  • ...I seem to recall we late 70s / early 80s kids were really getting a lot more from Japan than the UK in terms of Speed Racer, SB Yamato / Star Blazers, Battle of the Planets / Gatchaman, Ultraman, Johnny Sokko / Giant Robo...

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 10:26 a.m. CST

    I liked it better when the companions were just companions...

    by aramis2112

    ...and the storyline for the entire season didn't revolve around them.

  • ...or both. and she's a worse actress to boot. She completely over-acts.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 10:54 a.m. CST

    Please don't feed the trolls...

    by dj_bollocks

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 11:36 a.m. CST

    drmeyer-the doctor CAN visit them, but he shouldn't

    by glenn_the_frog

    Yes, there's a ton of wiggle room in the Pond's predicament. We know they lived full lives, raised a grandchild, and eventually, had graves put in that spot in a certain year. What filled those years, and if they ACTUALLY died at that time, are wiggly. Long as a grave ends up there at the right time, the timeline still works. It won't be any problem at all to drag them into an anniversary special, there's plenty of wiggle room. (Heck, we know as fact River goes off and visits them to write her book.) The two tricks are: 1. they were getting older and outgrowing the doctor... not really fit for adventures anymore, and wanting to settle down, and the doc was spacing his visits further and further aparts and was having trouble saying goodbye. Especially once they're settled into the timeline with adopted grandkids and making an impact on the era they were in. 2.while the doc can visit them, should some crazy adventure follow (and it always does) if anything happened to them, it would be catastrophic and rip reality apart. They already risked the universe with one paradox. To risk it again, just for the doctor's sake? Basically, there's potential wiggle room for them to appear again rather than genuine final deaths, but the show says they're unreachable, so treat them as unreachable. Until the 50th anyway.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 12:42 p.m. CST


    by jwardlow

    I'm a lizard woman...

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 1 p.m. CST

    That's why I've backed way from Dr. Who, gumbyandpokey

    by FeralAngel

    When some showrunner starts pushing his political POV into my face when I'm trying to watch the good stuff, that's a figurative and literal turn-off for me. I don't find the idea of two wimmin boinking at all attractive, liberating or entertaining. In this case, we're also talking about a lesbian lizard alien, so bestiality (sorta) gets thrown into the mix. I'm not one of those sad internet lurkers who gets off on drawing pictures or writing fanfic about fictional same-sex couples kanoodling, whether or not the subjects of such crap are human/lizard couples or two of the female My Little Ponys, and posting them on Deviant Art. I don't get the attraction. I daresay most people don't, which is why the unneeded insertion of the Geico Gecko's sister and her girl-toy into Doc Who is not only distracting but potentially destructive of the series. Get off the political pony, Moffatt. Just try to create good stories. Shut up and write!

  • I guys sound like the 2012 equivalent of the people complaining back in the 1960s about star trek because it had 'a colored girl in it'

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 2:02 p.m. CST

    feralangel -your viewpoiint is what the joke is aimed at

    by glenn_the_frog

    The point of "I'm an ancient lizardwoman from the dawn of time and this is my wife" wasn't to go "yaye, gay agenda!' It was "We're in the 1800's. Saying this first part will blow this guy's mind, and its funny. Saying this second part will also blow this guy's mind, and its even funnier!" Because its funny when someone in the 1800s is closeminded to whats commonly accepted now as a normal every day thing, that's anatural and normal human right. its sad when someone in 2012 still has a problem with it. The line could have also been "I'm an ancient Lizardwoman from the dawn of time and this is my ipod that plays digital music" but then it loses a little punch.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 2:06 p.m. CST


    by leroyspoboys

    Yeah, seen it many times. While actually pretty funny, Red Nose Day spoofs don't count as canon. This Christmas episode of full of clues leaning towards the idea. Plus Jenna-Louise-Coleman is clever, well spoken and hot. It wouldn't be a far stretch. And if she bottles it they can always dump her and get another guy in. Right now she's working cheap (like Carey Mulligan pre-Blink), so it's not a huge risk. It will make a lot of press, ratings will jump, and they can always rewind back to a dude.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 3:06 p.m. CST

    A big problem with JLC becoming the 12th Doctor

    by SgtHowie

    is that a new Doctor needs to be new. That's what generates the buzz. IMO promoting an actor from companion to Doctor isn't nearly big enough of a change. Imagine if Series 4 had ended with the announcement that Series 5 would see Catherine Tate as the Doctor. Initial shock and surprise certainly, but then the next day what have you got? The same woman who has been in the show for a year will also be in the show next year. Lovely, but hardly the kind of seismic shift the arrival of a new Doctor should be bringing to the series.

  • Whatever one's view is, Doctor Who should be about something other than soap-opera mentality put into a sci-fi show. It's one of the weakest elements of New Who. Look to classical Who: you could and did find things, here and there, but it wasn't beating you over the head all the time (maybe once, but not all the time) with the message. The story was more important. And it is something which has been lost

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 5:38 p.m. CST

    Like it or not, DW is a culture changer

    by veteran_of_mu

    The fact that one or another cultural taboo is important to one or another of us plebs is quite irrelevant. The culture is itself wibbly wobbly. When DW started such things as heart transplants and personal communicators were science fiction. Captain Kirk used a communicator to prove he was from another world in one episode of TOS. And the church weighed in against heart transplants, saying they would harm the recipient's "soul". Sexual mores change not quite so frequently as hem lengths, but not quite so infrequently as eclipses. And writers of DW cannot help but play the long game. Indeed the show must attract writers who wish to play it.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 5:50 p.m. CST

    If you're starting to moan about sexual Taboos in who now...

    by dj_bollocks

    ...or should that be Sexual Ta-Who's ? Anyway there's been a sexual agenda in Who for years... Just check out the New Adventures... Certainly since the series rebooted in 2005 (and probably stuff I missed as a kid in Old Who...) If you're having a problem with it now, maybe you shouldn't be hiding behind the sofa and instead hide in the closet away from all the bad things in the world... remember to lock the door behind you...

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 6:15 p.m. CST

    Clara and the whole 'remember' thing...

    by Mister Vertue

    Haven't had time to read through all the posts here (yet), so somebody may have already pointed this out, but I'll point it out anyway just in case to give you something else to think about. If you asked me 'Hey, MOV, do you remember that hilarious scene from the Coronation Street Christmas episode last year?', I'd say 'No, I do not remember that, as I did not watch it', meaning I have no prior knowledge of it to remember in the first place. Now, it could also be that she's asking him to remember each meeting so he can piece together certain things at a later date too? I will say this though, I fully expect her identity to be revealed prior to (or on) the anniversary date of November 23rd. Dragging it out longer than that would not be very wise. We can be patient and wait until then, right?

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 7:01 p.m. CST

    the new companion is hot

    by walt

    i would fuck her in every room in the tardis

  • she has the quality of some of the companions of yore and why do people get down on tv or movie actors for "overacting" if they are, it is because they are directed to do so blame the director

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 7:14 p.m. CST

    Here's a HAT for you.

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Wouldn't the Doctor be God now considering he created big bang 2? What if Clara is the original God pre big bang 2, and is now scattered across time and space? The Doctor is going to have to put humpty dumpty together again.

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST

    The problem with the lesbian/married "joke"

    by mypalfish

    is that it wasn't the least bit funny for one. And it distracts from what's going on in the scene and causes the viewer to think, "oh a political cheap shot." Same crap happened on Smallville in the last season and on Supernatural throughout it's run.

  • Wat?

  • As for the supposed agenda, folks, remember the ball's in your court as viewers (or should I say the balls are, har--but then I couldn't complain about those out-of-code companion-f***ing posts, and that would be no fun at all. . . ) to interpret the story as you please, and you are welcome to take note that many people are also repelled by reptiles, overly-smug married people, and pushy amoral people with no regard for societal norms, so you can really read Vastra and Jenny's scenes as YOU please unless YOU have an agenda of your own. They're not REALLY handed to you as through-and-through goodies who are not subject to debate. Good science fiction has always--and to a somewhat greater degree than general fiction--reflected its time's anxieties about the future and invited open discussion. The scientific basis for gender and sexuality is most certainly a key thread in public discourse today, so it's fair game as much as time travel, alien life, or the risk of using technology to play God (so long as they don't get into actual f***ing, which would be out of code for both the show and the docback).

  • Dec. 27, 2012, 11:25 p.m. CST

    @caractuspotts - Gerry Anderson was ALL OVER US in 1960s AND 70s

    by jnsin1960

    I suppose I am a tad older than most of the Americans you encounter here, but not only can I recall Thunderbirds, Joe 90, S:1999, UFO, but I also used to watch (and had some 8 mm films of) Captain Scarlet, Fireball XL5, Terrahawks AND Space Precinct. So you only need pity the children of the latter 20th and 21st centuries here in the colonies.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 12:34 a.m. CST

    @jnsin1960 - thank goodness for that!

    by veteran_of_mu

    I think my favourites as a child were Joe 90 (I had a metal toy version of his car!) Captain Scarlet and The Secret Service. Good to know America got these as well as the commonwealth countries - there would be an unbridgeable cultural gap if you didn't. I had almost forgotten how astonishing Anderson was until about ten years ago I caught an early morning broadcast of ~Terror in New York City~. is the bit that blows your mind. Create a scale model of the empire state building and "move it 200 yards" an excuse for a TB4 episode? What was the man smoking?

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 2:53 a.m. CST


    by zer05um

    The problem is that the story wasn't targeted at a culture that has so many hangups.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 3:03 a.m. CST


    by leroyspoboys

    But what if the kill off the final 'incarnation' Clara in the middle of the 50th anniversary episode, then 'kill off' Matt Smith 30 minutes later and he regenerates into a new female Doctor played by JLC? With no warning at all. Then the last 25 minutes is a montage of all the clues throughout the series (a la Bad Wolf, et al) leading up to it. Bang, new female Doctor, bob's your uncle. Shitload of pre-christmas press coverage. Regeneration heard 'round the world'. Her 'Birthdate' is the 50th anniversary after all and the Doctor gave her a key to the Tardis after she was there for all of about 20 seconds telling her 'never forget this moment' and 'this is where it all begins'. They'll ride the 50th anniversary angle straight into the ground all year. Pretty ham fisted, but don't be surprised if it comes true. It's also going to be the 12th Doctor. And there are only supposed to get 13 regenerations. So maybe there's some plan where because she's female they can change it naturally (unlike the Master taking over someone elses body to cheat the rule) so the series can continue. I'm reaching now, but possible. Regeneration is also supposed to be tied to the Tardis somehow. And with two David Tenants plus River Song being conceived in the Tardis (later regenerating a couple times), Matt Smith might actually count as the 13th regeneration. So a drastic reboot may be needed. When better to do it but the 50th anniversary? If your see references to only 13 regenerations anywhere in this current series, we're going to be on the right track.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 3:53 a.m. CST

    Clara is more likely the Key to Time than the Doctor

    by HornOrSilk

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 3:59 a.m. CST

    It's funny when people talk about the need to be open minded

    by HornOrSilk

    And yet they are not mindful of positions other than their own, and mock those who don't agree with their view. In other words, not open minded, either. If one looked at classic Doctor Who, this kind of sexuality wasn't necessary for the show, and indeed, I think it has hurt the show. Focusing on secondary -- for shock and joke values -- has been a way of style over substance. Again, to me, this is one of the weaknesses of New Who. One can be critical of an aspect of the show and still like it and watch it. We don't need to be the OG Squee Squad here. Please, people, if you want open-mindedness, show it by how you treat people with a view not your own.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 5:58 a.m. CST

    @leroyspoboys RE JLC is the Doctor

    by SgtHowie

    I do see how that theory could make sense, and no doubt be a good story in the brain twisting way Moffat loves so much, but I'm still of the view that such a cast change would not be nearly big enough. When a new Doctor is cast, the news reaches damn near everyone in the country, including all those who are occasional viewers of the series. This is very important; it is a tremendous opportunity to draw people to the show. But the hook has to be dramatic, promising that the show is going to be radically different, to generate enough curiosity. An outwardly minor change like shifting the companion into the Doctor role isn't going to create any ripples with the wider TV audience. To draw a soap opera parallel, which of these would pull in more curious viewers; the landlord of the Queen Vic leaves and is replaced by a surprising new guest star, or; the landlord of the Queen Vic leaves and is replaced by the barmaid who has been there for the past year. Unlike soap operas, Doctor Who only gets the chance for a publicity grabbing cast change once every year or two, and IMO they need to make the most of that chance when it comes along. Regenerating into a female Doctor is fine, but it would need to be someone new to make the most of the event IMO. It has happened before, so maybe that is the best example to look at. Imagine the Curse of Fatal Death played out over a full season. What has the biggest impact at the end; the Doctor regenerates at the end and Joanna Lumley suddenly appears, or the Doctor regenerates and is Julia Sawalha? IMO, the first sets up an intriguing next season, the second is far less exciting purely because JS would already be very familiar to the audience. Maybe the COFD plot has been Moffat's secret plan for the 50th anniversary all along, hidden in plain sight; the Doctor marries the Master. :-)

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 6:09 a.m. CST

    Americans and Gerry Anderson

    by SgtHowie

    It is good to read above that Gerry's shows did have some impact across the Atlantic. It does make this site's continued absence of news of his death rather more surprising and sad.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 6:59 a.m. CST

    Gerry Anderson

    by Kathryn Gail

    I was very aware (here in the U.S.) of Space 1999 when it first aired, being just the age to start following up every show with long debates over who was hottest. It did get a prime-time slot. Thunderbirds was sort of around, but on at odd times and out of context, and if you watched it and tried to describe its awesomeness to other people you just got a big "? ? ?" Other shows. . . not so much in my area (although perhaps they were made more of just a few years before I would have been looking for them).

  • Of this sweater: If that doesn't reference Tom Baker's scarf, I'll eat my HAT.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 7:28 a.m. CST

    Oh my god! They killed Clara!

    by ElfOdin

    You bastards!

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 8:12 a.m. CST

    I like the fact that with clara

    by emeraldboy

    there does seem to be a bit of mystery... and that she seems to be a bit dark as a character. this years christmas ep was all over the place.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 9:40 a.m. CST

    Companions need to be pivotal for dynamic development

    by ProfWimsey

    Sure, in the old series, companions were just side-kicks who served plot by getting into trouble and who got young men to ogle. However, that also had a lot to do with why the series faded in popularity in the 1980s: this was dated 30 years ago! For Doctor Who to remain interesting, it has to evolve. The classic series did only in terms of plot: we get a new Doctor, we learn that the Doctor is a Time Lord, the Doctor gets stuck on Earth, etc. These were dolloped out over multiple seasons and never central to the evolution of the Doctor as an individual: he didn't evolve, he metamorphosed from one version of the British Superman to another. If you think about it, then the least successful companion of the new series has been Martha: who was far and away closest to a classic companion. (She was sort of Liz Shaw redone.) The arc that season didn't involve her character, but the Master: and that was cool, but Martha was never properly utilized. Clara is offering some definite potential. We see a Doctor (again!) despondent due to the loss of a companion, and more lurching in his character in one direction while a reversion to his basic self (a mystery to solve!) on the other. This could be very interesting!

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 9:42 a.m. CST

    Oh, and we loved the episode....

    by ProfWimsey

    Not quite as good a A Christmas Carol, but loads better than last year's, and maybe the 2nd best overall. (I put it a little ahead of The Next Doctor.)

  • Clara's the TARDIS from something that happens in the future. Since it's not Suranne Jones, people wouldn't be expecting it. Or maybe the different Oswins are different fragments of Sexy, scattered through time. The different Claras might not even realize that they're part of Sexy, but might still feel some association with the Doctor. It would certainly explain Oswin being able to hack into the Dalek system and reprogram it easily - you'd think that even with access to the Daleknet that regular Daleks, even the Scientist Daleks, wouldn't be able to pull off a hacking job as easily as she did. It makes you wonder if there might be more significant clues in Journey To the Centre of the TARDIS.

  • Fireball XL5, Captain Scarlet and the Thunderbirds were staples of UHF television in the 1960s. The larger cities with multiple UHF stations needed things to fill their time with, and we usually ended up with The Three Stooges (yaay!), Scooby Doo, Star Trek, Gerry Anderson shows and Irwin Allen shows that went into syndication (Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Lost in Space, Land of the Giants). UFO got added into regular rotation, and I recall the Sci Fi Channel early on also showing it on weekends in the early-mid 90's. We had Space 1999 but it didn't get the constant repeats of that after the show had its two years.

  • comment from the Independent: While the episode was enjoyable the problem was that the story feels truncated and rushed. Granted the time frame leaves little room for dalliances but it would have been nice to have seen more of Simeon’s developing relationship with the Great Intelligence. Grant is brilliant as the villain but more of him would have been even better. One of the things about Season 7 is that with the minimovie feel that Moffat's trying for, a lot of things do feel rushed and truncated, and we don't necessarily get the character development that we should for the villains or some of the secondary characters. Strax, Vastra and Jenny in the XMas special, and Brian Williams are notable exceptions, but there wasn't any real development of Grayle in The Angels Take Manhattan, Richard Grant's character here, or the villain in The Power of 3 should have had more development. Maybe after Season 7 and the specials we can go back to having the occasional 2 parter to be able to let a story breathe and develop the characters more. Or, at least find a way to quickly develop them more if it's not going to be a 2 parter.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 12:36 p.m. CST

    @hornorsilk: "In other words, not open minded, either"

    by obijuanmartinez

    Oooooh mommy! Da icky wesbos are KISSING!

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 12:52 p.m. CST

    hornorsilk - Clara being the Key to Time

    by DoctorTom

    it's certainly as possible as her being the Heart of the TARDIS. It might mean there are at least 6 Clara/Oswins out there if each segment is one. There could possibly be more if the segment dies and comes back somewhere else as another Clara/Oswin. Of course, it might just be the 6th segment keying in on a Clara/Oswin imprint after dying as Princess Astra at an untelevised time. Would Moffat do this? Normally I'd say no, but the 50th anniversary special coming up changes things a bit. He could have the reveal at the end of the season being she's a segment of the Key and the 50th anniversary special being him (and possibly other Doctors) getting the other segments together to stop some calamity.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 1:04 p.m. CST

    obijuanmartinez -- in other words, you prove my point

    by HornOrSilk

    Difference of opinion doesn't mean people are not open minded. However, forcing one opinion on others.. a problem...

  • Which is why I threw out the Key to Time idea. I don't think it is likely, but I think it has a small chance of being what is going on (far more than she is the Doctor). And if the Key To Time gets into play, perhaps that is where everything goes down... the Silence is trying to stop the Doctor from using it, perhaps? I don't know.

  • I've said sexuality in general, to the hyper-extent we have had it thrown at us in Doctor Who, is not only unnecessary, but detracts from the story themselves. It turns the show inside-out and more and more like a soap-opera. Did I say we should stop soap operas from existing? No; just that I (and others) think Doctor Who is best when it doesn't go that direction and follows more classical sci-fi drama styles, allowing substance (and subtle remarks) have more say than the flashy style we have now.

  • ...the Moff's tenure has been (IMO) comparatively sparse. However, a "difference of opinion" in this case is someone who has a so-called "moral" or religious objection to homosexuality - Right THERE is where your argument goes threadbare, laddie For if in the 21st century there are those who find the idea of two consenting adults in a loving relationship (regardless of their gender), then that's a pitifully small world view I need neither embrace nor acknowledge as deserving equal credibility...

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST

    obijuanmartinez -- seems you have a closed mind

    by HornOrSilk

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 2:52 p.m. CST

    City of Death had...

    by Peter

    ...a character fragmented throughout time who lived independently in different time periods, like Clara: count Scarlioni, last of the Jagaroth. Just sayin'

  • It's very simple: If we're all going to be equal, then we should in fact, BE equal...

  • And that's the end of that. You have all kinds of fallacious arguments all aimed at red herrings.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 5:14 p.m. CST

    Closed mind>open ass, glenn_the_frog and other twats

    by FeralAngel

    You know, the kind of ass that will open itself to anything that begs entry and then call it sex. Bullshit on this "closed mind" crap. The Lizard Girl was a smug jerk and her smugness extended to her "oh, we're lesbians, and that bugs you, so that makes us superior!" attitude. Ditto on you snotnoses who also cap the attitude. Think you're impressing anybody (besides yourselves)? I dig the straight sexual orientation, it rules the world, I'm straight, glad of it, there, I'm in YOUR face, like it? Some - no, MOST creatures prefer the Original Recipe, and it'd be a very dead world if that weren't the case. I'd prefer not to have the gay agenda, or any political stance of any sort, mixed in with Dr. Who. If Moffat continues to push his political correctness at viewers, then he's lost at least one of them, namely me. Cheerio!

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 5:55 p.m. CST

    Be excellent to each other.

    by Peter

    That's the cardinal Docback rule - and a pretty good one. Guys, there are a few posts here which sail pretty close to the wind. Dissent is fine, I'm sure, but please be respectful of others. Ironically, a discussion of whether this tiny aside derailed the episode is in much more danger of derailing this Docback.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 6:13 p.m. CST

    Still nothing about Gerry Anderson on the site?!

    by Seph_J

    Very, very poor show.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 6:49 p.m. CST

    Gerry Anderson

    by SgtHowie

    The lack of anything from this site has now moved beyond unbelievable incompetence and is starting to look like a deliberate insult. Seriously, it's like a UK site ignoring the death of Irwin Allen or George Pal.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 7:17 p.m. CST

    A day in the life of @feralangel...

    by obijuanmartinez,11150/

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 7:22 p.m. CST

    bornorsilk -key to time

    by DoctorTom

    I wouldn't be surprised at nods to the past in the 50th. I'm not sure if it will be the Key to Time, but it could. I suspect though that nods might be more toward Hartnell or possibly Troughton, though. Possibly with a sprinkling of Hand of Omega to spice things up, though.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 7:31 p.m. CST

    Can we PLEASE get back to a normal Docback, and drop the gay debate?!

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    This Docback is becoming childlike, and would enjoy a more grown up atmosphere. Thanks.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 8:18 p.m. CST

    Yep, the lack of a Gerry Anderson mention...

    by Seph_J

    ...does seem like a deliberate insult. I mean, seriously!? None of the AICN writers even had the time to throw up a simple tackback with a few Thunderbirds clips on? Very sad. Nice to see some Anderson love here in the docback though. And shame on AICN.

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 8:36 p.m. CST

    Do you remember the failed Thunderbirds relaunch that FOX aired in the 90's?

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

    Was GA involved with any of that?

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 9:32 p.m. CST

    The Lizard Agenda - HAT #231723

    by veteran_of_mu

    I'm sorry to break it to all of you open minded folks, but I don't think Moffatt is pushing a gay agenda at all. I think he's pushing a lizard agenda. As you can read at there are many species of all-female lizards who reproduce without sex. It turns out they each carry around an extra set of chromosomes in every cell and internally recombine them, eliminating the need for an external contribution from a male. That cuts down on the risk of disease as well as the chance that isolated individuals won't be able to reproduce the species. Many parthenogenetic species are able to have sex if males are available, but can happily do without if they're not. Importantly, all-female parthenogenetic lizard species indulge in ~pseudo-copulation~ and increase the number of their offspring when they do so. This is probably because of evolutionary pressure more than social enablement, but in an intelligent lizard species we should certainly expect that social bonding a.k.a. love would be pursued by lizard people. Obviously, Madame Vastra is cut off from the rest of her species. Isolated, it's only natural that she turn parthenogenetic - not out of some kind of ~gayness~ but in order to indulge in pseudo-copulation and thereby improve her reproductive chances. That would be a natural biological urge in a parthenogenetic species. Jenny, however, would have to be one very confused and bestial dyke. Not unlike this lady: Who knew the discovery channel could be so onomatopoeic?

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 9:35 p.m. CST

    Whoops! Apologies for the d-word!

    by veteran_of_mu

    Jenny might also go in for male lizards. Or other species of humanoid. Let's hope some more turn up so we can find out!

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 10:11 p.m. CST

    How can you bring up the oeuvre of Gerry Anderson

    by DrMorbius

    ... and fail to mention his first stab at Supermarionation ... Super Car ?

  • Honestly, that's what I thought was genuinely hilarious about the... er... lizard agenda: "Victorian values" were mentioned several times, and Jenny probably started out as a good Victorian, knowing as much about sex of any permutation as Vastra initially knew about human gender. Ignorance is bliss! And as per my previous comment: totally the viewer's call whether to take the happy couple as hilariously 'right' or hilariously 'wrong.'

  • Dec. 28, 2012, 11:36 p.m. CST

    @patrickstewart - actually in Cold Blood ...

    by veteran_of_mu

    It was established that the Silurian tongue sting doesn't kill humans. It mutates them - presumably into Silurians. Or hybrids, I don't think it's completely explained. So it's plausible that Jenny isn't as human as she looks. She could be carrying Vastra's genes in order to help stimulate her parthenogenesis. That would tend to mitigate the appearance of pseudo-bestiality. Also, given the different appearances of the various Silurian races, it may be that the human-like Silurians in NuWho are already hybrids. Their disgust for apes certainly seems like a taboo, and IIRC they had a similar taboo about inter-breeding with Sea Devils. Doctom would probably recall more about that than I ... I also looked up the etymology of the word dyke. Understand that as an Australian I use that word in the re-approriated rather than pejorative sense. So, interestingly, it's a contraction of morphodike, an early 20th Century clinical term for a female homosexual. And another classic DW term for Silurians is Psionosauropodomorpha ...

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 12:20 a.m. CST

    I think you're probably right gumby.........Dr Who IS a gay show now.


    And it has been since it returned in 2005. Pointless gay bits stuck in the show to make some point about "tolerance".

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 12:40 a.m. CST

    Can you define that for us please lordoflight?

    by veteran_of_mu

    I know you usually just turn up to troll but I'm a bit curious about what you're saying here. Do you mean it's a show watched exclusively by gay people? Made exclusively by gay people? Or intended exclusively for gay people? Or some combination of those things?

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 12:46 a.m. CST

    Q.E.D., @caractacus !

    by Kathryn Gail

    And there's science fiction displaying a key cultural function: inviting thought exercises about anxiety-inducing science topics of the day. (And I seem to recall that morphodike is a colloquialization morphodite, an alternate for hermaphrodite. Also. . . . . .but I'm assuming that happened after the Silurians went underground, much as enormous whales evolved from deer-like creatures. . . )

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 9:41 a.m. CST

    If Clara is the next Doctor you can say goodbye to the series.

    by Octavian

    The Doctor isn't female, nor is he black, nor is he gay, nor is he a paraplegic, nor is he "dik-slek-sic" or anything else that might clench the thighs in pleasure of a very, very small percentage of the viewing audience. He's a caucasian alien male. At a time when at least two of those things are apparently deeply unfashionable. Anything else would kill the series stone dead. Thankfully, the pound sterling will save us from that fate, as the Beeb won't gamble with such a property. Moffat might be powerful, but he isn't that powerful.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 10:06 a.m. CST

    Caucasian alien male

    by veteran_of_mu

    You know, right up until you said that, I didn't care at all who played the Doc. It never even occurred to me that someone would think of the doctor as having any race but Time Lord. So have to thank you Octavian. You've opened my eyes. I am now very eager to see an African or Asian or Indian actor play the doctor. Age, sex and sexuality not important so long as they're talented and willing to take risks. The only race I'd be reluctant to accept in the role is ginger ;-)

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 11 a.m. CST

    @octavian Beeb bosses may not be set on the white male Doctor

    by SgtHowie

    I'm sure I heard that the suits upstairs at the Beeb were quite keen on casting a black Doctor in 2009. Paterson Joseph was the preferred candidate I believe but Moffat wouldn't go with it and chose Matt Smith on the basis that he was the best for the job, irrespective of colour. Not sure you can count on them always batting for a male in the role either. I reckon if Miranda Hart wanted to be the next Doctor, the execs would be all for it!

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 11:26 a.m. CST

    RIP Gerry Anderson

    by Seph_J

    Some nice things being said in the comments section at the end of this story on the BBC:

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 12:40 p.m. CST


    by Octavian

    So anyone who isn't white will do? Doesn't sound very fair. No pun intended. I don't know quite how to break this to you... There is no such thing as a Time Lord. It's always been a white British bloke pretending. As to your other points: I already have an Indian Doctor, thank you. Splendid fellow. Wouldn't swap him for the world. Best GP I've ever had. That does not mean the BBCs go-to professional Indian, Sanjeev Bhaskar, for example, inexplicably still described on Wiki as a "comedian" by the way, would make a decent Time Lord. @sgthowie Paterson Joseph is a terrific actor. He was only in the latest Peep Show series for two minutes and pretty much provided the highlight of the entire run. As for Miranda Hart, the very idea gives me chills. The thought that it is the sort of casting that might gain some traction within the BBC makes it even more horrifying.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 1:07 p.m. CST

    Wow, thanks for the link, obijuanmartinez!

    by FeralAngel

    I'd click on it, but strangely, I don't feel the need. And I feel kinda sorry for those who do. Don't let me stop you.

  • Troughton's Doctor took on the Intelligence 2 or 3 times, including in the first story with the Brigadier (then just a Colonel). That story featured the Intelligence centered in the London Underground in the late 1960's: i.e., the map on the lunchbox that the Doctor had. I think that the show forgot about the GI after Troughton's era, at least until now. I'm sure that it turns up in New Adventures, as those focused largely on recycling old plot devices and trying to retcon some cohesion among them. I did like that, btw., as Smith's Doctor is very reminiscent of Troughton's Doctor, i.e., hyperactive and a bit silly, but always honing in on the point in the end.

  • To have something big connecting to the past.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 3:27 p.m. CST

    horn - openmindedness

    by Rebel Scumb

    So people should be open minded to the ideas of close mindedness? So if someone hates black people, or that women shouldn't be able to vote, or unbaptized babies are going to burn in hell, I should be more open minded to their beliefs? Why? They've put their beliefs above the welfare and respect of others.

  • and the strengthening and developing of the female characters is a big part of that I love the old show, but the women really are just walking eye candy, and even the doctor himself has almost no character development over the 26 years. If the show was ever going to thrive in the 2000s then it was going to need more depth.

  • Exactly

  • However, my point was not the debate about homosexuality or the like; my point is Doctor Who doesn't need all the constant focus on sexuality of any kind. That's my point. And people can be open minded to that position, especially since it's shown itself the norm in history. I am not here to debate anything about sexual morality. I am saying that Doctor Who doesn't need sexuality, straight, homosexual, or monosexual.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 7:22 p.m. CST

    Three doctors walk into a bar ...

    by veteran_of_mu

  • If you're a teenage girl, gay bloke or lesbian then you might enjoy it--but the show seems too obsessed with luvvy duvvy stuff and "relationships" now instead of telling good sci fi stories. Stuff most males who are into Dr Who probably hate. This wasn't the worst Xmas special but it wasn't that good either.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST

    And the show certainly doesn't have more depth either.


  • And childish. A silly character who goes about kissing everyone. That's the type of character development I can do without thanks very much.

  • It worked without it for many many years and it doesn't need people with different agendas trying to put it in the show now.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 9:22 p.m. CST

    Caucasian Alien Male...

    by obijuanmartinez

    I vote Chiwetel Ejiofor as the next one!' Seems some folks at the BBC have him on their list of prospects as well...

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 9:22 p.m. CST

    The show stopped working: that's why it got cancelled.

    by ProfWimsey

    The reason why Doctor Who went off the air is because it stopped working. 1980's audiences wanted more sophisticated fare: the old icon from the 1960's and 1970's was dated and really exhausted. 25 years ago, audiences wanted character development and dynamic character development at that: one only has to look at the shows that were successful at that time (either in the UK or the States) to see that. The modern show works very well: it's ratings are spectacular. And guess what: the character development (including sexuality) are big reasons why.

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 9:40 p.m. CST

    I will agree on the point that the Doc is a male though...

    by obijuanmartinez

    ...however, the idea a Timelady such as Romana, for example, need always be a caucasian female is also false, as evidenced by her briefly blue skin in this regeneration scene from Destiny of the Daleks: If they wanted a female Doctor Who-type show, they could always dust off the character of Romana, regenerate her from Lalla Ward, and voila - instant franchise. Worked for Sarah Jane & K-9...

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 9:46 p.m. CST


    by DoctorTom

    There's more than that going on with the cancellation. The 25 minute drama format, with the static lighting and multi-camera shooting had been abandoned by other shows at that point, scheduling and the like played into it also. If you look at the end of the original series, they actually were working character development into it, the quality was greatly improved, but it didn't attract more people. The problem was that the old,tired BBC executives actually had a dislike of the show (after fan reaction to the season 23 hiatus) and didn't want to put the money into the show that it needed. It was easier to put the show on an indefinite hold while they figured out how to do it properly.

  • You suggested way up-thread that Clara is the TARDIS from something that happens in the future, and I rather suspect she could as easily be the TARDIS or some effect thereof from back when it was undergoing its looped explosion at all points in time (granted that was in another version of the universe, but perhaps it had an equally pervasive effect on the next universe). If she can manifest at any point in time, her 'true' stories for the Latimer children could indeed have been true at various times. She could have been born behind the face of Big Ben, and invented fish (interestingly, fish with bony skeletons first appeared. . . when? During the Silurian geological period!). This is all making me like more and more my own, way up-thread rationalization for the weeping family nonsense that I initially made up simply because I personally dislike deus ex machina resolutions, and overemotional schlock ones are the worst sort. It holds together, though, and makes the story 'better,' in my totally subjective opinion: Clara passed the one-word test with panache, and knew the umbrella would let a short person reach the TARDIS ladder from the roof, so it's unlikely she missed any details about the parasitic snow having a psychic field concentrated around the Latimer home. She'd seen how thinking of snowmen made them appear, and deduced not only that could she make above-freezing salt water appear via her own strong emotions at meeting the Doctor and facing death, but that the effect could be amplified by the children's attachment to her, the maid's extreme emotions (recalling how every little thing made her scream), and Captain Latimer's romantic feelings. Just as she did as a Dalek, she set the effect in motion at the expense of her own life after telling the Doctor to run and remember. An if she's Sexy or any part of her, she knows that running and being clever are the Doctor's things that he does that made her choose him in the first place. Ohhh. . . and then if the Doctor is having a REALLY dark year, Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS will actually air as The Doctor's WiveS and feature reappearances by Suranne Jones and Alex Kingston. . .

  • Dec. 29, 2012, 10:32 p.m. CST

    BBCA: thank you for not cutting the repeats, FINALLY!!!

    by Kathryn Gail

    BBC America is repeating the Christmas special several times tonight, and not cutting it to an hour for a change. Thanks for listening to the angry feedback, BBCA!

  • Dec. 30, 2012, 12:04 a.m. CST

    a thought on the new companion

    by DoctorTom

    We've had the last name be Oswald twice now. I wonder if the name was chosen for her so that Moffat could have some connection to Lee Harvey Oswald for the 50th anniversary of both Doctor Who and the Kennedy assassination.

  • Dec. 30, 2012, 1:56 a.m. CST

    oh--oops--"telepathic," not "psychic" field; also: the opening

    by Kathryn Gail

    Really really like the opening, more so on re-watching. The old cosmic colonoscopy had gotten way too routine.

  • Dec. 30, 2012, 5:28 a.m. CST

    Chiwetel Ejiofor

    by Octavian

    If the truth be known I would guess the main people who think he should be the next Doctor are Chiwetel Ejiofor. And his agent. Under the Blair administration a new MP called David Lammy was elected as the member for Tottenham. Very quickly the media got hold of the story that he was likely to be the UKs first black Prime Minister. It turned out that the story was started by... Ummm... David Lammy. He certainly had all the qualifications to climb to the very top of the greasy pole. What about Ade Adepitan? I think he's available.

  • Dec. 30, 2012, 8:50 a.m. CST

    I like the opening

    by popboy

    too... reminds me of old who...

  • Dec. 30, 2012, 1:02 p.m. CST

    Octavian, re Chiwetel Ejiofor

    by Peter

    I've been suggesting him as a great choice for the Doctor for the last few years and I've heard other echo the same idea. At first I thought I had an original choice, too! I couldn't care less about the race or gender of the Doctor - I just happen to think that Chiwetel is the best choice from all the regular names that get mentioned. He has piercing eyes and a rather magnetic, somewhat mysterious and alien on-screen persona. If Matt Smith is the new Troughton, Chiwetel would be the new Tom Baker. They could do a hell of a lot worse.

  • Dec. 30, 2012, 3:37 p.m. CST

    A Character's Sexuality- An op-ed piece by TheZebulun

    by Zeb

    I think you guys are reading way too much into it. In new Who I can think of a few characters who were openly gay or bisexual, and I never once felt like it was a political view or agenda. The tall & fat gay marines? Jack Harkness? It's not that he's inserting gay characters to be political, it's because *SPOILERS*---- some real people are gay too. If this had happened 30 years ago, I could believe the "Moffatt is jamming acceptance down our throats"(giggle) argument. But in 2012/ almost 2013, its not an issue anymore. Or I should say its not an issue to normal humans who realize someone else's sexuality or views don't dictate their own. I feel like if you have a problem with a few random characters being gay, you have a problem with gay people. Seriously, somebody do the math of all the characters on Who and figure out what percentage are gay, then compare that to real world numbers and, my guess is, that the real numbers will be much higher. I'm pretty sure the internet would break if a tv show ever had a cast where a realistic number of homosexuals were on it. Not shows specifically tailored for the LGBT culture, but just a normal run of the mill network show. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, obviously, but it's only an issue if you make it an issue. Just don't read too much into it. Who is, and will always will be, entertainment. Just let it be. And Strax needs a spin-off. Z out.