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part of a small rebellion | by maryann johanson

Doctor Who blogging: “The Caretaker”


[previous: “Time Heist”]

warning: spoilers!

So this is my life now. I’m depressed, I’m broke, I’m hopeless, and even Doctor Who has abandoned me. Forget escapism: there’s no escapism anymore. The escapism is happening over there, offscreen, and we’re meant to just take it as a given:


Whatever awesomeness happened here was not for us to enjoy. Yes, we’ve seen this done before. But not when the stories we’re teased with look far more interesting than the one we’re actually getting.

Instead of a cool SF adventure on another planet, we got the faded xerox of “School Reunion” meets an episode of Eastenders. Faded xeroxes of previous episodes are a Thing now. This is a problem, because if the show is not going be just corridor-running story after monster-chasing mystery, if it’s going to be About Something Bigger, then it shouldn’t be copying itself like this. All that corridor running and monster chasing of the old series was less repetitive than the show is lately. The less ostensibly formulaic the show gets, the more actually formulaic it ends up feeling.

But it’s meta! There’s just meta here. There’s nothing wrong with meta, but there can’t be only meta. You wanna wink and nudge and say something extratextual about the nature of Doctor Who as storytelling and as an institution, there still has to be an actual engaging story to hang it on. It has to also work on a non-meta level. (Non-Doctor Who examples: The Princess Bride. Firefly. Even if you have no conception of the other things they are referring to, the genres and the tropes and the clichés, they still work as stories.)

With All Meta All the Time, there’s no need for an alien or enemy or villain or monster. You just need a Thing. A scary Thing, probably — it’s gotta have a scary name, anyway. Something Blitzer. Ooo. It is most definitely not a Dalek. (It says “Destroy, destroy!” not “Exterminate, exterminate!” Totally different.) Or else… ooooohhhhh. It’s a meta commentary on the pointlessness of the Daleks at this stage of the game.

Except, no, it isn’t. It’s just the random vaguely Doctor Who-shaped boogeyman for this episode. So don’t bother asking for any explanation for it, and don’t ask questions about the plot to find it and eliminate the danger it presents. The school is “the only suitably empty place in the area”… except the place where the thing is is pretty damn empty, so why bother to put the school in harm’s way? What is the Thing? Where did it come from? Why is it here? How has it gone undiscovered? Wait, you mean the Doctor could have just talked to it to convince it to shut itself down? These are not questions you need to bother with. This isn’t meant to be a story about the Thing.


There’s Danny. He’s probably a really great guy with lots of interesting ideas about stuff and things, but we have to just take that as a given. There may well be good reasons why Clara is hanging around with him, why she has gone from having-a-drink to “I love him” in the blink of an eye. However and whenever she fell in love with him is not for us to enjoy.


It’s not like Doctor Who is about emotions and stuff.

Except… that’s exactly what it’s trying to be about. It’s what some of the very best episodes of the new series have been about. (“School Reunion”? I sobbed my eyes out.) Hence (I think) the cruel mean bigoted Doctor: humans are dumber than otters, soldiers can only be PE teachers and can’t possibly understand math, Clara smells (and probably has girl-cooties).


The Doctor’s just hurting, see. Or jealous of Clara and Danny. Or lonely. Or something.

But… barely a moment of this rings true emotionally, beyond Danny’s perfectly understandable anger and confusion, what with Clara treating him like shit and condescending to him like he’s a particularly slow child and lying to him all this time. I feel really bad for him. The Doctor and Clara? I can barely stand to be in the same room as them in this episode.



Whatever validity the issues being explored might have as issues — it’s tough when friendships change; figuring out what sort of life you want to live can be tough — it’s all being handled in so hamhanded a way that I want to throw things at the screen.

And this business with the awesome Courtney Woods, the “disruptive influence” whom, we may presume, the Doctor would readily identify with? (He was Gallifrey’s most disruptive influence ever, after all.) The girl who thinks the TARDIS is “cool” and eagerly asks, “Can I go in space?”


I can’t help but suspect that this is Steven Moffat’s smarmy fuck-you to those of us fans who have been complaining about the things I’ve been complaining about for the past couple of years. (I’m far from alone in complaining.) Oh yeah, we think traveling on the TARDIS with the Doctor would just be nonstop amazing? Hah! We’d probably just vomit all over the place.


Of course there’s tons of potentially intriguing stories to be told about how life with the Doctor would not be all fun and games, and there have, indeed, been plenty of stories dealing with precisely that. This episode seems to collate in one place all the many grating ways that motif is being deployed lately.

[next: “Kill the Moon”]

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  • guest2

    Yes, I like having a more mature doctor, yes, I like the new togs, I really can’t stand the new intro – ummm really just hate it, I like the episodes not being a slave to a story arc like a crack in the universe, terrible chemistry or writing between Clara and the doctor, the dating scenes are scarier than the monsters, Pink is strong and very likable, but it is the the doctor’s unnamed angst which is spoiling the myth of the doctor: The sulking behavior and mouthy dialogue suitable for a teenager who does not know who they are in life or what they want – it is a recurring tantrum I have been a reluctant witness to in every episode this season. Give me a real clue: unrequited love for Clara, amnesia, identity crisis? Or follow Clara’s pin up boy: “Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.”
    ― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
    If the doctor loves Clara – let her go, if you can’t remember let your actions or choices define your character/identity shouting and glaring yields nothing. I don’t want a doctor who can’t heal himself – he won’t be able to heal others. I can’t suspend belief that far – I will watching another show.

  • I like having a more mature doctor

    I might like that… if we had that. This Doctor is like a petulant child, and he’s getting worse.

  • Thomas Scott Estes

    I agree. I actually miss the story arcs of Seasons 5 and 6. Beyond that I feel like the Clara/Doctor dynamic has improved slightly if only because Clara has become less flat as a character.
    But geez, give us something. It is a xerox of a School Reunion but without Sarah Jane, without chemistry, and without well anything to be interested in.
    And to the writers who think we’d just throw up- I’d at least vomit in to space.

  • guest2

    You are right, that was a polite euphuism for my age.

  • Maria Niku

    I suppose the Doctor’s petulance and grumpiness and childishness may be all about how different he now is. As in: “how can we make the Doctor really really different? Hey, let’s make him, like, really grumpy, and petulant and childish and afraid of the dark, just like us humans!”. The problem being, if it’s meant as character development, there needs to be some of the how and why for it to be relatable. So far, at least, there’s been none of that.

  • he’s not hurting. he’s becoming the Valeyard.

  • Wait, you’re broke?

  • Danielm80

    I would have liked this episode much better if Courtney Woods had been the main character.

    I hate to say it, but I don’t like the 12th Doctor.

    I like Capaldi–who’s entertaining in the broadly humorous scenes–and I like shows where the main character isn’t always sympathetic. But this character is just pointlessly cruel.

    Malcolm Tucker was abusive because it helped him reach his political goals. Sherlock is abusive because he’s convinced he’s the only person behaving rationally. The 12th Doctor is abusive because Steven Moffat thinks it’s funny.

    And it could be very funny. The comments about Clara’s appearance could have been a funny comment on Earth fashion: He thinks that high heels are impractical for walking and make-up looks garish and unnatural. He doesn’t understand why humans don’t wear sensible accessories like giant scarves and pieces of celery. Or the insults could be a reflection of his loneliness, as an alien in a place where no one understands his culture or matches his intelligence. I think Capaldi could do a fantastic job playing that Doctor, and I think Moffat could write him really well. But instead, Moffat has been writing gratuitously mean, vaguely sexist dialogue that serves no purpose. I’d rather watch a show about somebody else, like Courtney Woods.

  • bronxbee

    exactly and agree with all of the above, with an additional question — exactly how many perfect killing machines are there in this small corner of the universe? daleks, cybermen, this thing (whatever) — all perfect killing machines — and this one doesn’t even have a rationale to go with it (who made it? why send *one*? is it a scout? a rogue? lost? ) and being able to talk it into self-destruct make it pretty useless i’d say; and i’m tired of the Doctor’s mean, nasty attitude — how can he not understand how and why women dress up and wear heels, when he *clearly* states he had a relationship with River, who, in an earlier incarnation, he called “Hell in Heels?” bah!

  • Tonio Kruger

    It’s official. The Doctor is meant to be the new Greg House. Only without the limp. And the cane. And the Vicodin addiction. And Sela Ward. And any of the wit that made Dr. Greg House bearable for at least the first few seasons of that series.

    As for the rest…

    I suspect that Steve Moffat and his co-writer have been watching too many American TV shows again — hence the House references — and while that is normally not a bad thing — after all, RTD was not above shamelessly stea–er–borrowing from Buffy and Angel in the first few seasons and one episode of the show’s fourth season shamelessly borrowed so much of its opening from The X-Files that it’s a wonder that William B. Davis didn’t show up for a cameo — it would be nice if it made the episodes more memorable for a change the way it used to do when RTD was running the show. (And this from someone who once thought he would never be saying anything good about RTD once Moffat took over the show.)

    I suspect that Moffat learned entirely the wrong lesson from Joss Whedon’s early shows and that he believes that if you throw out enough red herrings and misleading subplots, you don’t have to bother with an actual story. Again, not the first time this has happened on the series — indeed, Old School Who was producing bad episodes long before anyone ever heard of Joss Whedon — but it would be nice if it stopped happening.

    For that matter, it seemed fairly obvious since “Listen” that Danny is meant to be the new Rory and Clara the new Amy and that this is supposed to be a surprise to any viewer above the age of ten. Ho-hum.

    I have seen worse episodes in the past but I would like to see better this season.

  • Tonio Kruger

    Isn’t everybody?

  • Beyond broke.

  • Of course, House is basically Sherlock Holmes. Maybe Moffat is, for some bizarre reason, trying to write the first sociopathic protagonist of a children’s show…

  • althea

    That’s been my problem since the season started. At first I thought I just hadn’t got a handle on him yet, but after this many episodes, he just seems to have a screw loose. Techno-babble and free-ranging anxiety, combined with giddiness seems like bipolar disorder except that he doesn’t have down periods. #11 did though. I don’t know what to make of this but I’m not sure there’s anything to make.

  • Jemcat

    Liked the fun opening segment but would love to have seen the sand piranahs. My problem so far is that objectively I can see that Peter Capaldi is delivering a terrific and committed performance but I don’t know who he is apart from a rude, aggressively hostile misanthrope with a major problem with soldiers. The Radio Times lead writer is hailing Peter Capaldi’s Doctor as a return to the way the Doctor has ‘always’ been as a grumpy grandfatherly curmudgeon but as a long time Who watcher, I thought the default also included more wonder, joy and curiosity with a mantra of ‘Do NoHarm’. The characterisation so far is almost a revulsion against the ‘slack jawed’ boyfriend 10 and 11 Doctors (to again borrow from the RT article). Many are finding humour in the Doctor’s rants against Claraand Danny but I am finding too much cruel bully and not enough of the wonderful adventurer. I guess the characterisation is to a purpose, but not sure of the destination and I am becoming less willing to continue the journey. I do hope I don’t step off from Who like I did mid series 6 as I do really appreciate Jenna’s and Peter’s performances.

  • Spoilers, possibly:

    You might be in luck, I think I caught a glimpse of an older woman with her distinctive hairstyle in the preview for next week’s episode.


  • more wonder, joy and curiosity

    Exactly this. The sense of wonder is all but gone.

  • He did seem to be setting up Courtney for something.

  • Jim Mann

    I don’t think Capaldi’s Doctor is sociopathic, and I don’t think Moffat intends him to be. Throughout the history of Doctor who, there have been two types of Doctors — the ones who seem very human (if a tad eccentric at times) and the ones who to really not relate to human ways of doing things, who are awkward socially, etc. In the old series, Peter Davison’s Doctor was on one end of the scale, Tom Baker on the other. In the modern series, David Tennant’s Doctor related very well to humans and fit right in. Moffat, with his two Doctors, has gone in the other direction. Matt Smith was very awkward at times around people (though usually in a very charming, klutzy way). Capaldi is also awkward around people, but in a much gruffer way. I don’t think, though, that he is trying to be nasty; he just doesn’t understand social protocols (or doesn’t care about them).

  • Beowulf

    Dr. Who just got to be too much much maintenance, too much work. All those episodes I’m now not watching? I probably won’t worry about missing them in 100 years, if you know what I mean, boobie….

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    I don’t think it wrong to suggest the Doctor is deliberately being a jerk (which, it should be noted, is different from being sociopathic). A few years back, those DnD alignment chart macros were going around, and several were made around the Doctor. (MAJ had one as a Thing of the Day. The Mary Sue featured another, which I think put’s 10 in a better location.) I figure we’re going to want to slot 12 into one of the bottom positions. It’s too early to say where he fits on Lawful-Chaotic scale, but he’s definitely Evil (in DnD alignment terms).

  • bronxbee

    it makes no sense, for a person who has lived among humans as long as The Doctor has, to *suddenly* not understand them, or look at them in a weird way, or have huge moments of social awkwardness when he’s travelled the galaxy and encountered so many other species he treats with respect (on the few occasions we get to see aliens that aren’t daleks…) i’m not saying he’s totally aculturated, but jeez — not know why she’s wearing makeup, heels, what a normal human woman looks like — he’s behaving more like Strax, which is just idiotic. all the things i don’t like about Moffat’s “Doctor” are just that — the moronic, non-sense that he inflicts on the character; matt smith’s spitting out perfectly good food, PC’s Doctor being rude and not understanding women, yet mentioning that he and River had a huge fight… i just get weary of this type of thing. and the Doctor constantly saying “shut up!” in varying ways — hardly the kind of character you can sympathize with — and the Doctor is meant to be the main focus of the series. i feel like for all the accusations that RTD wrote the show from the “fan” viewpoint, Moffat writes it from the “screw the fans” viewpoint.

  • Lisa

    I agree – he’s old enough to know better! He doesn’t lose his memory every time he regenerates and it’s annoying!

  • Tonio Kruger

    Well, there was a time prior to the Moffat series when Sherlock Holmes was not generally thought of as a sociopath. Indeed, actor Tom Baker used to wear a Sherlockian deerstalker hat in one of his more memorable episodes in the old series and while his interpretation of the Doctor as Sherlock was usually as eccentric as his usual performances, it rarely made me think of his character as a sociopath . Indeed, even in the “Invasion of Time” episode in which Baker and the writers tease the viewers quite shamelessly with the possibility that the Doctor is a bit of a nogoodnik, I always had trouble seeing the Doctor as anything worse than an anti-authoritarian trickster. (And let’s face it. Part of the Doctor’s original appeal is based on the fact that he is a bit of an anti-authoritarian trickster.)

    Of course, Moffat’s interpretation of the Doctor is way different than mine but then so was RTD’s and yet I still managed to enjoy many an episode on RTD’s watch.

    As for Moffat, well, I keep telling myself that if I could stick with the old show through the Colin Baker years, I could put up with anything but I fear my faith in that statement is going to be greatly tested this season.

    I guess we should be glad that Moffat is not a fan of the recently deceased Dexter series, a cable series which had a protagonist even more sociopathic than Moffat’s version of Sherlock Holmes. Though if Moffat were such a fan, that would certainly explain a lot…

  • there was a time prior to the Moffat series when Sherlock Holmes was not generally thought of as a sociopath.

    Of course. But obviously Moffat likes writing sociopaths.

  • RogerBW

    I think what’s niggling me about the whole “soldiers are bad and stupid” thing, apart from it not being at all Doctorish and a right-wing caricature of outdated left-wing attitudes, is that in the old days the writers were able to distinguish “the military mindset” from “my friends the Brig and Benton”, and were able to accept that they could exist in the same person.

  • Maria Niku

    12 may indeed be a jerk on purpose as opposed to really not understanding, but again, from the character development angle, so far there hasn’t been any of the why and the how. As of now, he is like that just because.

  • Stephen Robinson

    Exactly! If The Doctor is an overgrown child, he might as well look like Matt Smith. And I hate the depiction of women as “carers” who have to go around being the “emotional credentials” for a screwed-up man. “Yes, he’s an ass but he’s BRILLIANT.” No, no, no — young woman watching… please, for all that’s holy, stay away from men like this.

    His treatment of Clara is fairly abusive. He claims to think highly of her but he insults her constantly. I suppose the “joke” is that Clara is obviously so gorgeous that the Doctor’s zingers don’t phase her. I’m not sure that is actually true in reality (i.e. don’t go around insulting the appearance of even conventionally attractive women) and since we have no evidence that the Doctor is aware of Clara’s conventional beauty and is just engaging in friendly ribbing, he might say the same things to someone who *would* take them quite personally, which makes him a bully and a jerk.

    The 12th Doctor is essentially Dr. House with a time machine. However, HOUSE was about an emotionally damaged man who happened to save lives. It would be a stretch to even call him an antihero. This Doctor is not inspirational or admirable. And he *should* be. The Doctor should see the good in people, not dismiss them. He had the opportunity to change a woman’s life who *wanted* to change but he rejected her because of who she’d been (INTO THE DALEK). That’s not what he did with River Song (former assassin who almost killed him) or Madame Vastra (Silurian who was a former killer) or Strack (Sontaran who was a former killer). What I’ve seen of the 12th Doctor so far is someone who, when compared to his new series predecessors, has changed for the worse.

    I’d joked that the series was making the same mistake it made 30 years ago (replacing young dashing Doctor with someone *far* different — older and slightly nastier). As you say, it’s very “meta” (“What if… the Doctor was not a good man? Was not a hero? Was not someone you actually would want to spend a lot of time with?”). The best Doctors have not been “meta” or “reactionary” choices. They each could carry the show on their own as the “hero” without it being necessary for the viewer to think, “Oh, it’s interesting that this Doctor is such an ass when he normally isn’t.”

  • Stephen Robinson

    Moffat also seems to miss the fact that his Sherlock is bearable as a character because of his strong, intimate relationship with John Watson. I’m not certain he’s capable of writing that type of relationship between a man and woman, so we really get this sort of nasty “isn’t it funny to belittle the appearance of a woman who is so obviously hot so it probably doesn’t bother her?”

    One problem I’ve had with “inherited” companions is that the show can fall into the trap of the companion sticking around with the new Doctor out of loyalty to the former. The Classic series handled this well most of the time (Baker and Sladen had great chemistry as the Doctor and Sara Jane; it was as if they’d always been together, and the tension between Adric and the 5th Doctor was an ongoing issue over the latter’s first season).

    However, 12 is again like 6 in that the classic series never truly justified why Peri would continue traveling with The Doctor after he became a clown-suit wearing psychopath. And given the timey-wimey introduction of Mel, the 6th Doctor never formed a true relationship with a companion, one who decided to travel with him on her own, not out of loyalty to who he’d once been.

    The 11th Doctor began without any companions and you saw him build a trusting, engaging relationship with Amy. The 12th has never done this, and I don’t even believe that anyone would willingly travel with him or trust their lives to him (again, Barbara and Ian did not willingly travel at first with the cranky 1st Doctor).

  • Stephen Robinson

    Yep, there’s no the “earth moving” speech from “Rose.” Or the “anything that ever happened or ever will.. all you have to do is choose” from “Eleventh Hour.” Those were Doctors you wanted to travel with. Even in “Robots of Sherwood,” The Doctor is hostile and snide to Clara’s suggestion for a destination. I recall The 10th Doctor going on about Agatha Christie or 9 about Charles Dickens. The Doctor should be fun and it occurred to me that the entire “Sherwood” episode was about the Doctor raining on a parade (“There’s no Robin Hood”). That seemed a clear character direction change. It would normally be more likely that the schoolteacher would think that Robin Hood was a myth and the wacky Doctor would gleefully prove her “wrong” — not to be an ass but because he wants to share the wonder with her.

  • Stephen Robinson

    Oh yeah, Moffat and others who think the Doctors have always had a “thing against soldiers” are missing that the Doctor respected individuals but just took issue with the “military mindset.” He was anti-mindless authority, which the Brigadier often demonstrated.

    The big, honking problem so far — as seen in INTO THE DALEK and THE CARETAKER — is that the Doctor is condemning people because they were *once* soldiers. Even a woman who wanted to change, who wanted to live a different life was dismissed as “a soldier” — thus it’s a static concept that can’t be changed. A former soldier can’t have served his country and now teaches math. He’s “just” a soldier. That’s an eccentricity. It’s mindless bigotry.

    The 10th Doctor was churlish to an actual soldier holding a gun in THE SONTARAN STRATEGEM but that is completely different from what the 12th Doctor is doing.

    My heroes see the good in people. They believe that people can change. Buffy believing in Angel and Spike is admirable, heroic. The Doctor is just being the worst of us.

    And I think that’s my big issue with how Moffat is treating the 12th Doctor. He’s decided that an ‘alien” character is simply a collection of the worst human traits.

  • Danielm80

    His treatment of Clara is fairly abusive. He claims to think highly of her but he insults her constantly. I suppose the “joke” is that Clara is obviously so gorgeous that the Doctor’s zingers don’t phase her. I’m not sure that is actually true in reality (i.e. don’t go around insulting the appearance of even conventionally attractive women)…

    Maybe the Doctor has watched too much reality TV, and he’s imitating the “pickup artists” who denigrate attractive women in an attempt to get the women to sleep with them. It makes as much sense as any other explanation for his treatment of Clara.

  • I was about to say the very same thing! The Doctor is “negging” Clara, just like a PUA would do.

    Oh my god, this is all so much worse now…

  • If there’s an intriguing version of the Doctor’s story to be told in which he has changed for the worse — and I think there could be — we are not seeing it.

  • Stephen Robinson

    Despite Capaldi’s statements about no “flirting” in the TARDIS, that’s all I’ve seen so far. I fear they are translating “flirting” to “treating a woman nicely.” The 12th Doctor does a lot of immature dipping of a girl’s pigtails in an ink well. He’s not so mature that he’s “beyond” romance (see the classic Doctors like 2, 3, 4, and even 5 for an example). It’s as though he’s regressed to a child who is too insecure to be open about his feelings so he’s overtly a jerk.

    I now think fondly of the fourth season pairing of the Doctor and Donna — no flirting, no unrequited love, just best buddies on a road trip. A man or woman could see themselves as Donna traveling with the 10th Doctor. There is no reason — other than plot contrivance — for Clara or any sane person to spend time with the 12th Doctor. Moffat needs to remember that Barbara and Ian were companions of necessity — they did not voluntarily travel with the crotchety 1st Doctor.

  • Stephen Robinson

    And I think that’s a storyline a Doctor has to earn. Tennant had built up enough capital with fans to be the “Time Lord Victorious” in “Waters of Mars,” just as Smith had when he was a despondent, retired Doctor in “The Snowmen.” In those situations, you were comparing that specific incarnation to himself in a better place. The 12th Doctor has not shown us a better place. He’s just… mean. And his interest in saving lives isn’t enough (especially when he likes to blow it off as just “passing time”). What I like most about The Doctor is the kind man who can console Victoria in TOMB OF THE CYBERMEN or can point out to a grieving widow why her children need to enjoy the Christmas holiday before they learn their father is dead in DOCTOR, the WIDOW,AND THE WARDROBE. These moments were what allowed you to definitively state that the Doctor was a “good” man.

    This is why the 6th Doctor failed and why the 12th might if a change doesn’t occur quickly. Each individual Doctor needs to work on his own as a character without comparison to previous Doctors. 12th is an ass, a non-likeable hero who we only give a pass because of who we knew he once was. That’s not the basis for a lheroic lead of a series.

  • I fear they are translating “flirting” to “treating a woman nicely.”

    As I noted in another thread, it’s almost as if Moffat sees women as belong to only two categories: 1) Fuckable, or 2) Too Ugly to Be Fuckable. The possibility of a woman the Doctor might see as “Nice and pretty but I’m just not attracted to her” is not a thing.

  • Jurgan

    Just watched this one. There were a few parts I liked, but not many. I got kind of a chuckle out of the Doctor seeing a Matt Smith looking guy and assuming that was Clara’s boyfriend, but it went on too long. This was basically a sitcom with a death-robot in the middle as plot device. I liked the opening, because I saw how Clara was trying to balance her adventuring with a normal life. Some people would drop everything and run off like Rose did, and some would eventually find it too much, like Martha did. Amy waffled back and forth for a while before the plot got rid of her. So Clara is showing us something different, and it actually gave her some character.

    On the other hand, the conflict between Danny and the Doctor was grating. I don’t get the Doctor’s contempt for soldiers. I get him having contempt for officers, because the Doctor has always been suspicious of authority, but average grunts? I loved Danny’s laughing at the Doctor being a “Lord” and mockingly saluting him. Their argument was the high point of the episode. But then the Doctor tells Clara she needs to “explain him,” as though the Doctor is required to approve of whom she dates. In “Where are the Women” terms, this would get minus ten points for a character policing a woman’s sexuality. So, yeah, enough of the Doctor inserting himself into Clara’s love life.

  • Jurgan

    That’s it exactly. In the best line of the episode, Danny made a distinction between soldiers who “pull you out of the fire” and officers who “light them.” The Doctor should have agreed with him.

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