I wanna be a bottle blonde I don’t know why but I feel conned I wanna be an idle teen I wish I hadn’t been so clean
- marina and the diamonds
Okay so imagine you ask somebody to tell you a riddle.
They turn to you and they say “the south pole.”
You say “what?”
They just repeat “the south pole!”
So you press them for some sort of explanation. They urge you to figure it out on your own, they say it’ll be better that way. They give you an hour to figure it out.
So you set to trying to figure it out, but every five minutes, they say something like “you still haven’t gotten it? It’s going to be great when you do!” or “but what do I mean by that?” or “don’t forget: the south pole!”
And then, the hour’s up, and you still have no idea what they mean.
"Okay, are you ready for this?" They ask you. You say yes, and they say:
"Where can I build a house with four walls, all facing north?"
And of course, you reply “the south pole.”
Now, I imagine you’re pretty unsatisfied. You feel like, if you had been given the riddle to begin with, you would have had a lot of fun trying to figure it out
But instead, you were given the answer at the beginning, and it just feels like your friend just spent a full hour enjoying watching you squirm while you tried to figure out what the riddle was
And that’s the problem I have with how Steven Moffat constructs his seasons of Doctor Who
I know people complain about Moffat’s companions being “too special” but the development of Russell’s companions is pretty much "Ordinary girl gains self-esteem with the help of the male protagonist”. I think that’s just as bad really.
You must’ve been watching a different show, because that cute tagline doesn’t apply to the RTD era companions.
FIRST PROMO IMAGE OF THE 12TH DOCTOR LEAKED
Finally a reason to watch Dr Who
I love Dwayne “The Doctor” Johnson
I’m rooting for Adrian Lester because he is my shakespearean darling but Richard Ayoade would be awesome too. Although for a second I forgot he was British and not American, which would incur terrifying levels of fandom wrath I’m sure.
i want a female doctor but i don’t want moffat anywhere near a female doctor
u feel me
Doctor “im not like other girls im a cool girl” Who
Christopher Eccleston. Hard core shipper.
As far as I’m concerned, the first season of the Doctor Who Reboot is an absolute masterclass in how to write two characters falling in love. The Ninth Doctor and Rose gravitate toward each other not because the plot demands it, but because each character offers something the other is missing. Also, despite their age and knowledge difference, they hold very similar values and approach problem-solving in almost the exact same way. They both revel in and lean on one another, and each sees the other as the most marvelous wonder in a universe full of marvelous wonders.
Theirs is also a very sexually-charged relationship, even though there’s only a single kiss in thirteen episodes. Stolen glances, reluctant touches; a whispered “run” that sends shivers up Rose’s spine. The outstretched hand, a repeated image in the season, offers the promise of wonder and danger alike, and that is such an unspeakably sensual and erotic metaphor that it threaded the entire season with this palpable feeling of sexual awakening and power, both for Rose and the Doctor alike.
Lots of fans love the second Season, but it’s actually my least favorite of the Davies years; its biggest failing, imo, is that RTD tried to capitalize on that sexual tension by making it explicit, and turning it into the driving force behind the season-long plot-line. On the surface, it seems like a great idea: The relationship between Rose and the Doctor is the most interesting part of the story, so why not focus on it? But when you zero in on the sexual or romantic tension between two characters, you often lose sight of what the relationship was built on — that these two characters complement each other and solve problems very well together. Thus in the second season, the story became all about poking and prodding the tension between Rose and the Doctor, with the actual relationship that explained why they were together almost entirely forgotten. So you saw Ten and Rose take each other for granted, and not say things that needed to be said, and not solve problems together, simply because that’s what the plot required of them. Hence their relationship began to feel less organic. Which is only natural — when sexual or romantic tension becomes plot device, it will always feel forced.
In Season 2, the outstretched hand became an explicit promise of sex, and to love each other forever. But an outstretched that merely promises sex isn’t sexy; it’s just foreshadowing. After all, there’s nothing about sex that’s unique or special; any two humans can bang out an orgasm together. And even when the hand promises eternal love, that’s not really believable either, because how can anyone — but especially Rose and the Doctor — even make that promise in good faith? They’ve both seen the end of their Worlds, and have been the last of their species; they both know that one day everything ends, including them, including this.
But the outstretched hand that promises adventure, excitement, discovery — like in Season 1 — that is sexy, because it’s something shared between two people. It’s about two discrete individuals having a joint experience, together creating something greater than the sum of their parts. And maybe one day that story will end, as all stories must, but we live it anyway, because the experience itself is worth it. That’s a love story. And that’s the story of Rose and the Ninth Doctor.
On Saturday, Doctor Who returns, kicking off the second part of the seventh series with a James-Bond inspired episode that sees the Doctor and Clara whizzing round London on a motorbike. Which is exciting if you like interesting drama with witty banter and thoughtful concepts. But less exciting if you like interesting dramas that include women on their writing teams.
Because season seven of Doctor Who will feature no female scribes at all. Not in the bombastic dinosaurs and cowboys episodes that aired last year, and not in any of the new episodes we’re about to receive. In fact, Doctor Who hasn’t aired an episode written by a woman since 2008, 60 episodes ago. There hasn’t been a single female-penned episode in the Moffat era, and in all the time since the show was rebooted in 2005 only one, Helen Raynor, has ever written for the show."
Dramatist and author Stella Duffy – who has noted the absence of women writers, and indeed directors, from Doctor Who on her blog – thinks that there needs to be a conscious effort to recruit writers from outside the usual small pool of male writers. “Try harder. Stop assuming that men can do the job well enough. If women are saying they feel left out (and they do), if women are saying they feel marginalised (and they do), if women are saying they do not see their voices on screen … Listen to them and do something about it,” Duffy says.
“We can knock and knock, but if they won’t let us in, we’ll never get to see how big the Tardis really might be inside. Right now, the Tardis only holds men, so maybe it’s not that big, after all.”
LOL…that moment when you realize not a single woman has written an episode of Doctor Who since 2007. LOL. And only five (four?) women have ever written for Who.
my only criticism of martha jones is that she had the opportunity to smang shakespeare and she didn’t
But this is the truth Doctor, you take ordinary people and you fashion them into weapons.
K, but you’re wrong.
Nobody is saying women can’t be like that. That’s not a complaint I’ve seen anyone register against Moffat or his writing. I’ve also never seen anyone complain about the fact that the women he writes want to raise children. Or model. Or any of those things. The trouble people generally have with Moffat’s writing - the problem I have with his writing - is that all of the women he writes are defined by the men in their lives. All of them. Not to themselves, but to the writers, and to us as the audience. Even Madame du Pompadour - a real historical figure with numerous remarkable accomplishments and a canonical life outside of her affiliation with the Doctor - was essentially reduced to a love interest in a Moffat episode. This is not the only time he’s done something like this.
Both River and Amy are defined not to themselves but to US as an audience entirely by their love for the Doctor. Tell me one thing about Amy Pond that doesn’t directly relate to her relationship with Rory, or the Doctor, or River. Tell me one thing. Try. Although we have never been given any indication that Amy is interested in being a wife and a mother, that’s become the entire focus of her character over the past season. She’s had multiple pregnancy-related story lines - including one very disturbing and traumatic one, the emotional ramifications of which were bafflingly never dealt with on screen - despite the fact that there were no previous indications that this was what she wanted to do with her life. This is typical of Moff’s women. Amy constantly has her decisions made for her. Her husband is shown as jealous and at times controlling, as is the Doctor. In the Comic Relief short, Rory pretty much straight out says that she only passed her driving test because she wore a short skirt, so she’s being defined by other people by her sexuality, and those people are not shown to be wrong for treating her that way, or reducing her to one aspect of herself. THAT is what makes it sexist.
The women in this universe lack autonomy. They are not allowed to define themselves. Amy didn’t choose motherhood, she had it thrust upon her. And when she discovered that she couldn’t have kids, she was upset because Rory wanted them, not because she did. Then, when the Doctor meddled to put them back together, it undermined one of the only major decisions she’s been able to make for herself in years. He does this a lot.
When the Doctor acts in a patriarchal manner towards his female companions, like not telling Amy that she was a ganger or anything about her pregnancy despite having suspected it for a long time, he’s never shown to be wrong for treating them this way. He asks Rory for permission to hug Amy, but he doesn’t ask Amy for permission. Despite the fact that she’s just been kidnapped and assaulted, he doesn’t let Amy exercise any bodily autonomy. It’s like a tacit admission that Amy doesn’t (or shouldn’t) have control over what happens to her body, because, well, she belongs to Rory now. Or to Madame Kovarian. Or to whoever decides to exercise control over her. In The God Complex, the way the Doctor tells Amy she needs to grow up is by calling her by her husband’s last name, despite the fact that we are never given any reason to believe that she has taken his name. This suggests that “growing up,” for Amy, means being a wife in a very specific sense of that word. And again, it’s a man in Amy’s life making her decisions for her. Amy didn’t choose that name, the Doctor assigned it to her. He chose his own name, but he doesn’t respect that she chose hers. Moff’s Doctor does that a lot. The Doctor doesn’t seem to respect her as a women or as an individual. And that bothers me tremendously.
Both Amy and River were shaped from a very young age by their knowledge of the Doctor, and honestly, he treats River like a child very much of the time. Even in The Wedding of River Song, where he supposedly marries her, he doesn’t let her in on the plan until the very last second. He basically just gives her shit about her decision the whole time. Again, the Doctor does that a lot, especially in Moff’s version of the show. He doesn’t explain himself. He doesn’t let the people around him make informed decisions. The Doctor does what he wants, manipulates who he needs to, and lets the chips fall where he wants them to fall.
It’s not sexist because of the choices the women make. It’s sexist because the women almost never get to make them. They’re constantly put in “damsel in distress” type situations, like Amy was in Asylum of the Daleks. And before that in… most episodes. The Doctor and Rory spend a lot of time saving Amy, protecting Amy, guarding Amy, etc. And that wouldn’t be a problem if this were real life, where saving people just makes you decent. But it’s not real life. It’s a TV show. Moff writes these situations, he has control over what happens in them. THAT’S why it’s a problem. Moff writes all of his women the same way. Every dynamic he gives us is problematic, especially the Doctor and River Song, who is basically his brainwashed child bride at the beginning of their courtship. That is fucked up. Seriously. Think about it. How can she really give meaningful consent in that situation? We know her whole life has been gearing up to kill him. We know she’s brainwashed. And we know that Moffat wrote her this way intentionally. That is why it’s sexist.
If these were real women making real choices, that would be a different thing entirely. What’s going on here is that a man (Steven Moffat) is putting his female characters in fucked up, problematic situations and acting like that’s totally fine, normal, and not something we should be concerned about. THAT is why it’s sexist. Not to mention the numerous sexist things Moffat has said in interviews.
That said, you don’t have to now hate Doctor Who, or even Moffat. You don’t. But refusing to acknowledge the sexist elements of this show isn’t going to make them magically disappear. There ARE problems with his writing. There ARE problems with Doctor Who. And I care because I adore this show. I have been watching Doctor Who for years and years, and if I didn’t care about the show, I wouldn’t care nearly as much about the way it’s being written. The problem with Doctor Who is that Moffat and his fans refuse to acknowledge when Moffat does something wrong. The refuse to learn. they refuse to get better, because they’re so concerned with defending themselves against accusations of sexism that they don’t consider what the accusers are saying, and whether or not those accusations have some merit.
Good people screw up. So do good shows. The best thing to do is admit it, accept it, and try to do better moving forward.