fauxkaren (fauxkaren) wrote,

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1x12 Bad Wolf and 1x13 The Parting of the Ways

The Doctor and Rose engage in a bit of post-danger hugging.

1x12 Bad Wolf
Grade: A-

I really love this episode. Spoofs of Big Brother, Weakest Link and What Not to Wear? Commentary on reality TV? LOVE IT.

Also, I love Lynda with a “y”. I think she’s a great example of the kinds of female characters that RTD can write. Lynda isn’t defined by romantic involvement with men or motherhood or anything like that. She feels like a distinct character unto herself. She’s sweet and plucky. She’s not especially brave, but she can be when necessary. I love her. I wouldn’t have minded if she’d joined Team Tardis. I really do like the rapport she has with Nine.

The Doctor: The human race. Brainless sheep, being fed on a diet of - mind you, have they still got that program where three people have to live with a bear?
Lynda: Oh, Bear With Me? I love that one!
The Doctor: And me. The celebrity edition, where the bear...
The Doctor, Lynda: got in the bath!
[both smiling]
The Doctor: But it's all gone wrong! I mean, history's gone wrong. Again!

I also love the Controller. She’s another great character by RTD. She doesn’t have many lines, but she’s a hero. And in her few lines you get a feel for her loneliness and the horrible life that she’s had. She’s smart too. She knows that she’ll be able to hide from the Daleks during the solar flares and able to hide the Doctor in the games. Also, it’s just an awesomely interesting and slightly creepy character.

Jack is awesome in this one. He’s incredibly funny in his reality TV show segment.

Captain Jack Harkness: What's a Defabricator?
Captain Jack Harkness: [his clothes get disintegrated]
Captain Jack Harkness: Okay, defabricator, does exactly what it says on the tin. Am I naked in front of millions of viewers?
Zu-Zana, Trine-e: [enthusiastically] Absolutely.
Captain Jack Harkness: Ladies, your viewing figures just went up.

But he’s also a hero. He’s not just a cheeky guy, he’s smart and will fight. He builds a gun out of the defabricator. How awesome is that? We also see that extent that he’s come to care for Rose. His anger when he thinks that Rose has been killed is really heart wrenching. His defensiveness of the Doctor at the moment is great too. They’ve become something of a family.

The look on the Doctor’s face when he thinks that he’s lost Rose is just heart breaking. He just goes completely blank. But he keeps fighting. He (and Jack. And Lynda) break out of their jail cell. And then yay! The look on the Doctor’s face when he realizes that Rose is still alive is just brilliant. :D

As a side note: Rose has managed to land herself in the Damsel in Distress role once again. Just saying.


1x13 The Parting of the Ways
Grade: A

A lot of times the Dalek plots make absolutely no sense. But this one actually does make sense! Using the game station to simultaneous gather humans to turn into Daleks while using transmissions to mask their presence! It makes sense and is actually sort of clever. Something that I really appreciate about RTD’s writing is that generally when he includes Daleks, it’s not just A Generic Dalek Story, but he makes an effort to introduce or explore a new part of the Dalek mythos. Here we find out about the Emperor of the Daleks and we see the Daleks gone a bit mad because they’re human-hybrids. “You hate your own existence,” the Doctor says. See that is so much more complex than just genocidal robots. Now they’re no longer racially pure and therefore must hate themselves on some level.

I love the Nine/Rose/Jack dynamic that we get to see at the beginning of this episode. We see how much Jack really did care for Rose which makes Jack’s conversations with Ten in “Utopia” that much more poignant and believable. Rose just wasn’t some girl he traveled with for a while, I think he really thought of her as family. That’s why he watched her grow up. That’s why he was so worried about Rose being on the list of the dead. It wasn’t just a casual interest, Jack really cared about her. For Jack, meeting Rose and the Doctor was a pivotal moment in his life.

Captain Jack: Rose, you are worth fighting for.
[Jack kisses Rose]
Captain Jack: Wish I'd never met you, Doctor, I was much better off as a coward.
[Jack kisses the Doctor]

And in this episode, Jack really is a hero. He rallies the troops, setting up blockades, trying to buy the Doctor as much time as possible. He goes down fighting. It was really a great death. Poor Jack though, left behind by the Doctor.

I also like that Rose is jealous of Lynda. Now I love Lynda, but I also love bitchy!Rose. So the bitchtastic look on her face when she sees the Doctor interacting with Lynda makes me laugh. Speaking of Rose being a bit of a brat, Rose is mean to Mickey yet again. “There’s nothing left for me here.” Ouch. But at least she’s finally ending it with him? And Mickey understands. He knows what he has to do and he helps her get back to the Doctor. All’s well that ends well?

I love that Rose never even considers the possibility of getting the hell out of Dodge. That’s not who she is. Of course she’s going to stay and fight. But then, as we all know, the Doctor makes that decision for her. That look on his face as he sends Rose away is just so heartbreaking. He knows that he’s going to die, but he’s not about to let Rose die with him. Even more, I love Rose raging at the Tarids. “Take me back!” She’s not content to let other people make decisions for her. She wants to be there with the Doctor, fighting.

The Doctor: This is Emergency Programme One. Rose, now listen, this is important. If this message is activated, then it can only mean one thing: we must be in danger, and I mean fatal. I'm dead, or about to die any second with no chance of escape.
Rose Tyler: No!
The Doctor: And that's OK, I hope it's a good death. But I promise to look after you, and that's what I'm doing. The TARDIS is taking you home.
Rose Tyler: I won't let you.
The Doctor: And I bet you're fussing and moaning now, typical. But hold on, and just listen a bit more. The TARDIS can never return from here. Emergency Programme One means I'm facing an enemy that should never get their hands on this machine. So this is what you should do: let the TARDIS die. Just let this old box gather dust, no-one can open it, no-one will even notice it. Let it become a strange little thing standing on a street corner. And over the years, the world will move on, and the box will be buried. And if you wanna remember me, then you can do one thing. That's all, one thing. Have a good life. Do that for me, Rose. Have a fantastic life.

To me, that is what Rose’s story is all about. She was learning how to live better and how to be more than just a girl from the estate who works at a shop. She was learning how to have a good life. She can’t just sit there eating chips with her mum and Mickey, knowing that the Doctor is in trouble.

Rose : But what do I do every day, Mum? Get up. Go to work. Catch the bus. Eat chips. And go to bed.
Mickey: It’s what the rest of us do.
Rose: But I can’t!
Mickey: Because you’re better than us?
Rose: No! I didn’t mean that. But it was. It was a better life. I don’t mean all the traveling and seeing aliens and spaceships and things. That don’t matter. The Doctor showed me a better way of living your life. You know, he showed you too. You don’t just give up. You don’t just let things happen. You make a stand. You say “no”! You have the guts to do what’s right when everyone else just runs away!

Billie really sells that scene. And it is exactly why I love Rose.

I love it when Rose figures out that Bad Wolf means that there’s a connection between the two times. It’s what she needed to encourage her to not give up and to figure out how to get back. She remembers what the Doctor had told her about the heart of the Tardis and uses it to get back. Rose is clever, even if she doesn’t have A-levels.

Bad Wolf!Rose is awesome. Seriously, Billie just blows me away as an actress. She’s great. Sure the ending is a bit deus ex machine, but whatever. It works. And because I love it so much, I’m posting a transcript of it.

The Doctor: What have you done?
Rose Tyler: I looked into the TARDIS and the TARDIS looked into me.
The Doctor: You looked into the time vortex, Rose, nobody is supposed to see that!
Emperor Dalek: This is the abomination!
Dalek: Exterminate!
[Dalek shoots at her with its laser, but Rose lifts up her hand and stops it, reversing it back into the Dalek, the Doctor looks on in surprise]
Rose Tyler: I am the Bad Wolf. I create myself. I take the words...
[Rose lifts her hand and takes the words from the Bad Wolf Corporation sign]
Rose Tyler: ...I scatter them, in time and space.
[the words float off away from them]
Rose Tyler: A message, to lead myself here.
The Doctor: Rose, you've got to stop this, you've got to stop this now! You've the entire vortex running through you're head, you're gonna burn!
Rose Tyler: I want you safe, my Doctor. Protected from the false God.
Emperor Dalek: You cannot hurt me, I am immortal.
Rose Tyler: You are tiny. I can see the whole of time and space, every single atom of your existence, and I divide them.
[Rose lifts her hand again, the Dalek that tried to shoot her disappears in an explosion of golden dust]
Rose Tyler: Everything must come to dust. All things, everything dies.
Rose Tyler: The time war ends.
Emperor Dalek: I will not die! I cannot diieee!
[we see Rose's eyes light up, and the Dalek Emperor and his entire fleet disappear in an explosion of golden dust]
The Doctor: Rose, you've done it, now stop.
[Rose stares straight ahead]
The Doctor: Just let go.
Rose Tyler: How can I let go of this? I bring life.
[we see Jack start breathing again and open his eyes]
The Doctor: But this is wrong! You can't control life and death!
Rose Tyler: But I can. The sun and the moon, the day and night... but why do they hurt?
[she is crying]
The Doctor: The power's gonna kill you and it's my fault!
Rose Tyler: I can see everything... all that is... all that was... all that ever could be.
The Doctor: [stands up] But that's what *I* see. All the time. And doesn't it drive you mad?
Rose Tyler: [Rose nods, barely able to speak] My head...
The Doctor: Come here.
Rose Tyler: ...is killing me.
The Doctor: I think you need a Doctor.
[He leans down and kisses her, and the golden light transfers from her to him through their lips]

That look of love in Nine’s face when he decides he is going to absorb the vortex from Rose to save her life, in turn giving up his own. It’s lovely. I love that both of RTD’s Doctor’s don’t die while saving the world in some grandiose way or because they’re fighting an enemy. They both choose to die to save the life of someone that they care about. And that just really sums up how RTD writes. He cares more about the characters than the action. The way that the characters relate to each other and care about each other is just so believable.

I suppose that if I had started to watch the series when it was originally airing, I would have been sad at Nine’s death, but since I’d already seen some Ten episodes by the time I watched this episode, I wasn’t too broken up about it. I had already fallen in love with Ten and while I liked Nine, I was eager to move on to Ten of the mania and emo and gorgeous hair. It was a great run.

“Rose, before I go, I just want to tell you. You were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. And you know what? So was I.”

Yes, you were fantastic, Nine.
Tags: doctor who, doctor who rewatch/review

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