14 April 2019

elisi: (Not OK)
This is probably the closest I'll be getting to actual meta on S11.

It's essentially me trying to understand Thirteen and how she fits with what came before. She is of course perfectly Doctor-y, but she feels a little bit like she fell out of E-Space. I don't really see the age, that core of darkness we know she carries inside. There are tiny glimpses, but it's nothing more than that, and continuity-wise the Time War might as well never have happened. (I presume this will get fixed in the future, and that they're just giving us a nice fluffy season of a breather to start off with.)

But to illustrate what I mean I shall use Four, whose era I am currently working my way through (just finished Season 13!). Four is of course utterly brilliant and effortlessly ageless and alien. But he feels young. (He's full of energy and action and curiosity and vitality, a happy man enjoying life.) I have been imagining this little exchange in my head, adapting River's first meeting with Ten:

RIVER: But look at you. You're young.
FOUR (wide grin, you know the one): See, this is exactly what I was saying to the Sisterhood of Karn the other day. Life doesn't begin until seven hundred and fifty!

In the same way Thirteen is perfectly 'ageless', easily striding across the universe and endlessly capable - a perfectly Doctor-y Doctor, with odd clothes and strange habits and full of obscure knowledge; but she doesn't seem to have that age to her that Nine onwards do, that burden of her blood-stained past, and sits much more comfortably alongside the Classic Doctors than the New ones. I presume this is a conscious decision, but I need that link, the acknowledgement of her history and her past to fix her properly in my head.

Or as Promethia said back when S11 was airing:

Back during Season Five I remember an old-timer saying that watch enough Who and inevitably your favorite character become the Doctor and your favorite Doctor becomes the Doctor. Which made enough intellectual sense to me to take note of, but man, I am feeling it this season. I get it now. Like, yes, your new friends seem lovely, but slightly in the middle of a 55-year old character arc here. Bit keen to get back.

The Doctor's internal conflicts have been the driving force of the show for... all of New Who, basically, so suddenly having a [perfectly nice, don't get me wrong] blank to work with is disorienting.

Now pointing out the issues obviously doesn't really help in trying to work out how to reconcile what's on screen with the disparity in my head. Thankfully, I found an explanation that works for me.

Why Does Thirteen Run? )
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