elisi: (Default)
[personal profile] elisi
And here's the other part!! (Serious political post here)




Doctor What?
He says he’s a man of peace/But he walks in war


1st time

2nd time

3rd time
(x)

This is the episode where the harsh realities set in. In both The Pilot and Smile, the problems came more from accidents than maliciousness, and Bill - through her sleuthing and putting things together - works out that basically the Doctor runs about the universe helping people.

What that MEANS becomes clear here… People die. And sometimes (if the options are limited) the Doctor kills them. And it’s interesting the way the Doctor frames it:

DOCTOR: A few hours ago, we were standing in a garden full of dead people.
BILL: That was different.
DOCTOR: How?
BILL: They were dead already.
DOCTOR: Morally and practically, that is not a useful distinction. Unlearn it.
BILL: Don't tell me what to think.
DOCTOR: I'm your teacher. Telling you things is what I do.


It really, really helps that they already know each other well, that they have six months (minimum) of interactions under their belt. The Doctor is not a stranger to Bill, not a mysterious creature she has run off with on the spur of the moment, or out of curiosity. She is trying to broaden her understanding, make what she already know fit with what she is just discovering, not learning from scratch:

BILL: Have you ever killed anyone? There's a look in your eyes sometimes that makes me wonder. Have you?

He hesitates, tries to fudge the issue, but she demands an answer, and she gets one. And then of course he puts it into a wider context:

DOCTOR: You know what happens if I don't move on? More people die. There are kids living rough near here. They may well be next on the menu. Do you want to help me? Do you want to stand here stamping your foot? Because let me tell you something. I'm two thousand years old, and I have never had the time for the luxury of outrage.

Incidentally, I am SO HAPPY that the thing about ‘never having time for outrage’ was a set-up, because duuuuude:

BILL: No time for outrage. You've never had time for anything else, right?
DOCTOR: Don't be smug. Smug belongs to me.


If only she had met Ten… I’m still laughing.

Anyway, what happens next is wonderful.

DOCTOR: I don't know the answers. Only idiots know the answers. But if your future is built on the suffering of that creature, what's your future worth?
BILL: Why is it up to me?
DOCTOR: Because it can't be up to me. Your people, your planet. I serve at the pleasure of the human race, and right now, that's you. Give me an order. Not long till noon. I need an order.
(Long, long pause, then -)
BILL: Save her.
DOCTOR: I'll take care of this. You get everyone off the ice.


Now he may have forgotten Clara, but her lessons clearly made a deep, deep impact:

CLARA: Oh, don't you ever tell me to mind my language. Don't you ever tell me to take the stabilisers off my bike. And don't you dare lump me in with the rest of all the little humans that you think are so tiny and silly and predictable. You walk our Earth, Doctor, you breathe our air. You make us your friend, and that is your moon too. And you can damn well help us when we need it.
Kill the Moon

This episode might be the best Doctor-Companion dynamic we have ever seen, and hopefully the blueprint for the future. The dynamic has always been unequal; the Doctor having so much power, the Companion there by his grace.

But by giving the Companion the authority to direct and control that power, they are much more even. And that can only be a good thing, both in terms of keeping the Doctor in check, and in terms of letting the Companion shoulder some the responsibility. And they do it together, supporting each other.

We also see another way in which the Doctor has ‘moved on’:

BILL: Yeah. Travelling to the past, There's got to be rules. If I step on a butterfly, it could send ripples through time that mean I'm not even born in the first place and I could just disappear.
DOCTOR: Definitely. I mean, that's what happened to Pete.
BILL: Pete?
DOCTOR: Your friend, Pete. He was standing there a moment ago, but he stepped on a butterfly and now you don't even remember him.
BILL: Shut up! I'm being serious!
DOCTOR: Yeah, so was Pete.

Thin Ice

Now the interesting thing is that this almost exactly what happened to Rory. Not stepping on a butterfly, but the Doctor has walked beside a woman whose love had been erased out of time… The fact that he can now joke about it, speaks to how much *better* he is overall (i.e. not eaten up by guilt). Here is to hoping that he has learned not to blame himself for EVERYTHING.

What Clara did was take full responsibility for her life and her choices, and this might be another lesson that’s made a deep impact. ‘Duty of care’ doesn’t mean he can usurp other’s choices.

Although I must also mention what might be my favourite bonding moment so far:

BILL: So the Tardis has dresses and likes a bit of trouble? Yeah, I think I'm low-key in love with her.
DOCTOR: Me too.


It’s hard to think of a single thing more likely to make the Doctor adore Bill more. :)


CUT SCENES

I am aware of two cut scenes from Thin Ice. One is funny, the other makes me want to scream silently for along time...





And via Sarah Dollard’s Tumblr:



Go read her post for more insight. Personally I’m just going to roll up into a ball…

River-dancing

River-frost-fair

♥ ♥ ♥



Overall arc

In my ongoing ‘What is Moffat Doing This Season’ thoughts, this Tumblr Post sums it up quite well (the whole post is worth reading, but this is at the heart):

So far, it looks like Moffat has decided to use his final season on the show to revisit the first principles of the show, and compose a love letter to the glorious legacy of Doctor Who.

The Doctor reading stories to children (♥), the eternal grandfatherly hero, fits into that beautifully. As does Twelve’s wonderful, heartfelt speech later on - the Doctor always looks out for and protects those seen as ‘unimportant’.

Or as Amy put it:

AMY: So is this how it works, Doctor? You never interfere in the affairs of other peoples or planets, unless there's children crying?
DOCTOR: Yes.


(no subject)

Date: 4 May 2017 05:25 pm (UTC)
kass: Tardis. Something old, something new... (tardis)
From: [personal profile] kass
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

(no subject)

Date: 4 May 2017 07:59 pm (UTC)
beer_good_foamy: (Default)
From: [personal profile] beer_good_foamy
Of course pangolins are aliens.



Loved this episode. And I'm half-tempted to write the epic story of The Doctor, Bill and Pete travelling time and space.

(no subject)

Date: 4 May 2017 10:29 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (luna)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
I'd never even heard of these things before. That is insane, I love it.

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 11:52 am (UTC)
owlboy: (Default)
From: [personal profile] owlboy
have you never seen a pangolin???? look at the way they walk https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mR3rReuBO_s

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 11:03 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
That is far too adorable to be allowed <3

(no subject)

Date: 4 May 2017 08:57 pm (UTC)
purplefringe: Amelie (Default)
From: [personal profile] purplefringe
<3 This is beautiful and true, as is your other post. I wish I had the brain to think properly about Doctor Who right now, because I really am enjoying it so much.

It really, really helps that they already know each other well, that they have six months (minimum) of interactions under their belt.

Yes, this makes for such an interesting and different dynamic! And absolutely means he can say things like that to her and isn't being a total dick - she knows how to talk to him. And I love that he still thinks of himself as her teacher.

I am SO HAPPY that the thing about ‘never having time for outrage’ was a set-up

ME TOO FRIEND. I also thought of Ten and did a little dance inside. Omg, Ten, honey. Every now and then I look at Eleven and Twelve, and I *really* just get what River meant when she said 'god, you're hard work young'. At the time that was just a kind of funny line, and Ten didn't (to me, anyway) seem like 'hard work' at all. But knowing how River is used to Eleven and Twelve, Ten must be SO IRRITATING. (ilu Ten)

Now he may have forgotten Clara, but her lessons clearly made a deep, deep impact

See, this is interesting. Because the Den of Geek review of the ep said the exact opposite: "in Thin Ice the Doctor has Bill make the choice on behalf of humanity - showing he’s learned nothing from 2014’s Kill The Moon, in which he alienated Clara by forcing her to make a similar decision about the giant dragon hatching from the moon." It's tricky, because the Doctor has also had a tendency to go to the other extreme and make unilateral decisions on behalf of humanity (eg. in Pompeii, Waters of Mars, etc), and it's striking that balance that he seems to find hard sometimes. Giving the companion power, without putting everything on their shoulders. I think he does veer a little close to the Kill The Moon side of things here, with his rather demanding 'I need an order', but on the other hand he has basically told Bill what the right answer is ('if your future is built on the suffering of that creature, what's your future worth?') and he is right there to deal with the fallout, should the creature start rampaging and eating everyone. There's an interesting discussion to be had about the trifecta of episodes that are The Beast Below, Kill The Moon and Thin Ice, which all effectively weigh an innocent creature's life against the lives of thousands/billions of humans, and how the Doctor reacts in each scenario (and how it differs from his previous reaction.)

Er, anyway. Yay <3

(no subject)

Date: 6 May 2017 11:40 am (UTC)
purplefringe: Amelie (Default)
From: [personal profile] purplefringe
I am now working on a post on the Hybrid
Aaaaah I'm so excited for that!

Echoes of Ace & her 'Professor'. Love it. And that he chooses *that* dynamic, rather than 'friend'.
Yes, exactly! And it's a dynamic we haven't seen in the Post-Time-War Doctor before. I LOVE the idea that this - and the 'boss' thing - is at least partially because of Clara deep in his subconscious <3 And I love that the Doctor is now at a place in his life where he can once again *be* a teacher - he's not too busy running away or hating himself or grieving.

YAY <3 I have missed you...
I have missed you too! Am here now <3

(no subject)

Date: 4 May 2017 11:13 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (ten pouts)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
At the time that was just a kind of funny line, and Ten didn't (to me, anyway) seem like 'hard work' at all. But knowing how River is used to Eleven and Twelve, Ten must be SO IRRITATING.
Lol, so, that is one of my very favorite River lines of all, still. I started watching Who with season five and went back and watched the RTD years while season five was airing/afterwards/somewhere in there. I had a . . . contentious time of it (Rusty and I are un-mix-y things). A lot of strong profanity and loss of dignity was involved. But I regularly and whole-heartedly credit River's quip about Ten being hard work as one of the few things that made watching Ten even remotely tolerable. (It's not even the epic manpain that gets to me. I actually like Ten more in his really late-stage episodes. Just to have someone on-screen acknowledge that he was irritating was like thank you.)

(Lest anyone take offense, I'm actually rather fond of the RTD era anymore. You have to grapple with it seriously in order to get anything out of Moff, so I did. And it's impossible to hate anything that meticulously without coming out on the other side with an affection for it. Also The Writer's Tale is just *kisses fingertips*)

See, this is interesting. Because the Den of Geek review of the ep said the exact opposite: "in Thin Ice the Doctor has Bill make the choice on behalf of humanity - showing he’s learned nothing from 2014’s Kill The Moon
Ah, thank you. I'd forgotten where I'd read it and just kind of had to go to Elisi in mute incomprehension.

There's an interesting discussion to be had about the trifecta of episodes that are The Beast Below, Kill The Moon and Thin Ice, which all effectively weigh an innocent creature's life against the lives of thousands/billions of humans, and how the Doctor reacts in each scenario (and how it differs from his previous reaction.)
Good point. I'm gonna go think that one over.

(no subject)

Date: 6 May 2017 11:47 am (UTC)
purplefringe: Amelie (Default)
From: [personal profile] purplefringe
But I regularly and whole-heartedly credit River's quip about Ten being hard work as one of the few things that made watching Ten even remotely tolerable

Heeee! I'm very happy that line's there for you in your time of need :-) After twenty plus years chilling with Twelve, encountering Ten in the Library must have been EXHAUSTING. ALSO it's just occurred to me that it now makes so much more sense why River would be so sad about Donna...I did always vaguely wonder when she and the Doctor talked about her, because she has never struck me as the kind of person who would want to spend their fleeting adventures together reminiscing about the Doctor's past companions - and it's not as if he regularly volunteers information about them. But with all that time together...they must have spent a LOT of time talking, and I bet she managed to coax him into talking about all of his past companions. And as a child of the Silence, she would particularly feel for Donna...(I like to think she would have given the Doctor HELL for what he did to her, but then it makes it a bit weird that he's so quick to want to wipe Bill's mind in The Pilot)

(no subject)

Date: 4 May 2017 11:54 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Clara long way round)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
Morally and practically, that is not a useful distinction. Unlearn it.
I love that line ridiculously much. Utterly true.

If only she had met Ten… I’m still laughing.
Good point. Holy hell, I can't even imagine how much of a disaster that would be; my brain just short-circuits.

Now the interesting thing is that this almost exactly what happened to Rory.
! Completely missed that. Good catch.

It’s hard to think of a single thing more likely to make the Doctor adore Bill more. :)
Heck, the TARDIS told the Doctor to go after her, and we know that she thinks of the companions collectively as 'strays.' So the feeling may be mutual ; )

It's an interesting contrast to her opinions on Clara. (Out of curiosity, what's your vote on why the TARDIS hated Clara? Probably we're meant to think that it's her being scattered across time and/or that she's running around the universe during the second of her death. But I'd rather believe it's Clara's stunt with the TARDIS keys. We all know the TARDIS is in charge, and she knows it too, going by The Doctor's Wife. Never try to control a control freak. Though, heh, if the TARDIS couldn't stand Jack, how does Clara's TARDIS feel about playing host to two immortals? It would be hysterical if she kept trying to dump Clara back on Gallifrey, like, gotta fix this shit asap . . . )

There was a scene cut from 'Thin Ice' where the Doctor declares his love for pangolins and reveals that they are aliens.
I missed that revelation. Pity. Surely that would have fit?

In my ongoing ‘What is Moffat Doing This Season’ thoughts, this Tumblr Post sums it up quite well
Your link appears to be borked in the italicized quotations marks manner.

ETA:
I'm your teacher. Telling you things is what I do.
*forehead!smack* He got that from Clara too! It goes away later in her run, but the early Twelve episodes he regularly talks about her as his teacher. Particularly in Into the Dalek.
Edited Date: 5 May 2017 12:13 am (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 10:14 am (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
This made me think about the mini character arc Bill went on this ep.

She starts out being scared of making any choices for fear of consequences and then ends up with the Doctor making her make a real choice.

It's like Sarah Dollard knows how to write well or something!

ETA: more darkly, there's the parallel between their little joke about forgetting Pete and what happened to the first orphan boy, who didn't step on a butterfly either but just stood still on the wrong bit of ice a moment too long, and the Doctor seeming to forget about him immediately.
Edited Date: 5 May 2017 10:19 am (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 11:49 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
!! Sarah Dollard for showrunner. :)
I think I just might get behind that. Face the Raven didn't impress me particularly. It was a bit of a mess, even if the last ten minutes were excellent. But this episode is so good on every level that I'm really looking forward to seeing more from her. (Also, if you haven't watched the aftershow, then do. She's adorable. You can't not be thrilled for her.)

'Seeming' being the key word.
Oh, absolutely.

(no subject)

Date: 6 May 2017 04:59 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
Do you remember the Sarah Dollard interview from when Face the Raven aired where she confessed to how much she enjoyed the way Capaldi said 'tattoo' in her script?

Naturally in this episode there is a scene in which she makes him say tattoo about twelve times in the span of a minute.

Bless the woman and her priorities.

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 11:18 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (tardis space)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
Jack's immortality is different: he's a fixed point that's why the TARDIS freaks out. She'll be fine with Clara & Me.
*snort* yeah that never even remotely made sense. And, heck, when the Doctor rescued Clara and then helped her run away from the extraction chamber everybody was yelling about how he was gonna destroy time.

Hmmm, yes. The TARDIS is not as forgiving as her thief.
Of course The Doctor's Wife is everything that is glowy and lovely. But I deeply, deeply appreciate that well after the fact we can know what the TARDIS's opinions/perspective on things are likely to be.

I am wondering about the context though. How do you fit in a line like that?
Maybe when Bill assumes that the creature under the ice must be an alien and the Doctor replies that that doesn't necessarily follow?

Clara is allllllll the things! :D
All the things!

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 04:57 am (UTC)
owlboy: (Default)
From: [personal profile] owlboy
>>This episode might be the best Doctor-Companion dynamic we have ever seen, and hopefully the blueprint for the future. The dynamic has always been unequal; the Doctor having so much power, the Companion there by his grace.


The power dynamic here is also significant i think for the fact it's a woman of colour and a parable for British exceptionalism old white dude discussing capitalism/slavery and he steps aside for her. That has ~implications Sarah Dollard seems well aware of.

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 10:14 am (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
Ooo, good point.

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 11:48 am (UTC)
owlboy: (Default)
From: [personal profile] owlboy
Also I'm surprised no one's mentioned Pete Tyler yet

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 11:24 pm (UTC)
promethia_tenk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] promethia_tenk
Oh man. If I was someone who went to conventions and cosplayed. I'd cosplay Pete.

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 06:09 am (UTC)
peasant: sweet pea (Default)
From: [personal profile] peasant
giving the Companion the authority to direct and control that power, they are much more even

Interesting. That is the exact opposite of what I got from that scene - he wasn't giving Bill any real power, he was just teaching her how to think it through. And I assume that just like any teacher if she had got the answer completely wrong he would have stepped in and corrected her. Plus he would have thrown her off 'Tardis 101' or whatever he calls his course - he did say she would be out if she ever got less than an A. That's very different to the Clara situation where, if memory serves, he was too afraid to make the decision himself.

makes me want to scream silently for along time...
But I think yours is good screaming, yes? Unless you have realised what I realised when I read this, and you got cross too. I must have not heard the bit where he said he had visited several times before and I'm really glad they didn't include this scene because much as I love continuity it would have made me even crosser about the episode if I had twigged he had been there before. I will go explain on my own journal when I have worked out how to say it politely. :(

The Doctor reading stories to children
Yes, I love that. I love that he actually treated them as children not just generic People.

(no subject)

Date: 5 May 2017 10:09 am (UTC)
ruuger: My hand with the nails painted red and black resting on the keyboard of my laptop (Default)
From: [personal profile] ruuger
Okay, so I already liked the episode when I watched it, but after reading your post I like it even more :)

(also, I may have accidentally binge-rewatched Twelve's entire run this week and have *all the feels* about him - Yes, I finally like the Doctor :D)

Profile

elisi: (Default)elisi
June 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 2017