On kisses and babies in Doctor Who

Posted by CB Droege

The second half of the premier adventure of the new Doctor Who season ran this weekend, and it mixes things up in proper Doctor Who style.

After the convoluted premier episode, a lot of questions were left hanging at the cliff-hanger. Some of the suspense points were manufactured for that last scene however, and didn’t come into play much in this episode.

I was disappointed to find that River is not going to be joining the regular cast, but we did discover that this version of her is from soon before the events in the Great Library.

She commented several times, however, that she was living back to his front: that they were meeting each other in perfect reverse order, giving a lot more structure to their adventures together than previously hinted at.

If their meeting were such that her past was always his future, then they would never find common ground in those notebooks of theirs, and thusly would have no need of them. 

I’m not sure if it’s just the new writers attempting to inject some dynamic drama into the relationship, or if there is some kind of purposeful disconnect. Of course, it also still bothers me that when she met the 10th Doctor she told him that he was younger-looking than she’d ever seen him, despite the fact that the new doctor is the youngest actor they’ve ever had. Although I guess she could have retroactively meant that he was younger somehow in time-lord terms, but I’m not sure how she’d be able to tell.

The overture and reveal at the beginning of this episode is interesting, but slightly frustrating, as it does little to explain itself. Don’t get me wrong, it was epically awesome. I always love seeing the clever action scenes, and remarkable reversals of intent, but this time, they were ill explained. Even after the reveal, and the team was all back together, it was never explained exactly why the FBI had to pretend it was hunting down all of the Doctor’s companions. 

Apparently, Nixon knew about the plan, so it’s not like they were hiding an agenda from the authorities. They could have just worked on whatever they were working on in the open, or at least not on the lamb. It’s not like this was a mystery that they are leaving for later, they just didn’t explain it, and it makes the whole sequence, despite its awesomeness, seem contrived.

The pregnancy sub-plot bothers me more though. As much as it’s interesting to me to think of the Doctor’s daughter as a character in future stories, and as an element of forward momentum, I don’t like the use of pregnancy as a drama device. It’s too string-pulling, and overly transparent. It also seems like it’s going to tie in more of the "Do I love the Doctor more than Rory" sub-plot, which I’m not a fan of. That conflict just makes me dislike Amy’s character, which I don’t want to do.

All that said though, the final revelation was astonishing, and I’m looking forward to the next adventure.