Friendly reminder that current show runner Steven Moffat and former show runner Russell T Davies are friends and worked together for years.
Friendly reminder that current show runner Steven Moffat and Big Finish Executive Producer Nick Briggs are friends, The name “Big…
So, apparently, The Girl Who Waited is a title that romanticises a passive activity and is therefore anti-feminist. This was news to me.deal with or describe in an idealised or unrealistic fashion; make (something) seem better or more appealing than it really is.To say nothing of the fact that Rory was referred to as The Boy Who Waited in a far more romanticised context, you rarely (if ever) see Amy referred to by that name without it being said or implied that she’s waited long enough or that she’s tired of waiting:DOCTOR: Fourteen years since fish custard. Amy Pond, the girl who waited, you’ve waited long enough. - The Eleventh HourDOCTOR: Amy Pond. The girl who waited all night in your garden. Was it worth it? - The Big Bang
DOCTOR [OC]: Amy, you’ve got to help us help you. I need you to think back
DOCTOR: Thirty six years ago. Amy? Amy!
RORY: You told her to leave us a sign.
RORY [OC]: And she did. And she waited.
RORY: Oh Amy, why won’t you help yourself?
AMY: He wants to rescue past me from thirty six years back, which means I’ll cease to exist. Everything I’ve seen and done dissolves. Time is rewritten.
RORY: That’s, that’s good, isn’t it?
AMY: I will die. Another Amy will take my place. An Amy who never got trapped at Twostreams, an Amy who grew old with you, and she, in thirty six years, won’t be me.
RORY: But you’ll die in here!
AMY: Not if you take me with you. - The Girl Who Waited
DOCTOR: Forget your faith in me. I took you with me because I was vain. Because I wanted to be adored. Look at you. Glorious Pond, the girl who waited for me. I’m not a hero. I really am just a mad man in a box. And it’s time we saw each other as we really are. Amy Williams, it’s time to stop waiting. - The God Complex (despite my problems of how Whithouse used Amy Williams it’s still relevant).
Petrichor. For The Girl Who’s Tired Of Waiting. - Closing Time
DOCTOR [OC]: Amy and Rory. The last Centurion and the girl who waited. However dark it got, I’d turn around, and there they’d be. - The Wedding of River Song
Contrast that with this:
DOCTOR: Two thousand years. The boy who waited. Good on you, mate. - The Big Bang (this isn’t even that romanticised, as he did it partly to atone for shooting her)
The only one you could even remotely call romanticisation is the one from The Wedding of River Song, and even there the context (‘my friends have always been the best of me’) makes it clear that he’s not romanticising it, just grateful that she waited for him when he felt he wasn’t worth it. He’s already acknowledged the impact that that had on her life, he’s allowed gratitude (especially given he’s planning to fake his death). In all other instances, the waiting is explicitly depicted as negative, not ideal, unappealing, etc. the polar opposite of romanticisation.
As ever, context is king.
Working in a male-dominated field of science, I have grown slightly weary of “wise old man” characters. Every great story has one, a Dumbledore, a Gandalf, a Master Hora - and don’t get me wrong, I love those characters! And I even take comfort in the thought of having that one grandfather-like figure who has all the answers. But as a woman, it does form a problem to me that intelligence is still expected to appear in the form of a white-haired old guy.
Doctor Who used to cater to an über-version of this stereotype. The grandfather, the doctor, the lord of time - how much more of an authority figure can one be? Mind you, when the show first aired, this was a good thing. Less than twenty years after the war, people yearned for characters that would reign the world with wisdom, rather than tanks. And what is more: considering where the show started, it has adapted amazingly well to the changing notion of female characters throughout the decades.
And yet, even in RTD’s era, forty years later, we still have that wise old man who has the answer to everything. Rose Tyler, Martha Jones, Donna Noble - they all are important, they all are intelligent and, yes, they all save the day at some point. But they all need the Doctor to show them that they are special. They need the wise old man to single them out and make them realise what they are capable of. (I know that this is a very harsh summary of what are actually brilliant characters.)
But compare this to Moffat’s writing: Remember Sally Sparrow, who figures out absolutely everything on her own, including how to make the Doctor figure out everything. Or Madame De Pompadour who remains in charge of Versailles even when under threat of being beheaded, and who finds a way for the Doctor to return when he has already given up. Also note that, while the Doctor and Rose are taken aback by her wit, she never is. Her intelligence is the most natural thing in the world.
No wonder the aliens want her brain! Did you notice the choice Moffat made there? She is a courtesan and it would have been an easy joke to use any part of her body. Her heart would even have been a somewhat okay and probably more poetic option. But it is her brain that the aliens want. And only her brain will do, forget the Timelord.
Whether it is Amy, who knows the Doctor better than he does himself, or Clara who outwits the Doctor in so many ways - the list goes on and on. Culminating, of course, in a wonderful Professor Song, who challenges the Doctor on a whole new level: Not only is she the Doctor’s equal, she is actually frustrated with him being “not done yet”.
Flying the TARDIS, speaking Gallifreyan, being a doctor - all that which used to distinguish the Doctor from his companions, that entitled him to have the final word - none of it can impress River Song. She does all of these things and she does it better than him. And she shows him how much he still has to learn. Who cares about a degree in cheesemaking, when you have no idea how to be in a marriage.
But does this take away from the Doctor? No. Again, Moffat is very smart about this. The Doctor is still a wise man. He still knows what really matters, still makes us see life with different eyes. But it is no longer because he is a man, or because he is a thousand years old, or because he has a degree in everything - it is because he is a person who has lived their life with open eyes and an open heart. A person who never ceases to learn new things.
Moffat stripped away everything that would give the Doctor intellectual authority by default. He ditched absolutely anything that might relate wisdom to gender. He added new dimensions to the notion of intelligence, some of which create a struggle for the Doctor. He gave him new things to learn and people to learn it from. And all it did was to make his wisdom more genuine. All it did was to make the Doctor better.
Okay, let me just weigh in on the wank for a second.
Here’s the things we don’t know about Ms. Delphox:
- Whether she will feature in episode(s) written by Steven Moffat
- Whether the character was created by Steven Moffat
- Anything other than her looks, occupation, and her “mysteriousness”
- So basically anything which makes her a character - and not just a short list of things she does or adjectives which are basically just meant to make her sound interesting (in a clumsy way, but still)
Other things to keep in mind:
- Although previous female villains have shared certain patterns, they haven’t actually been the same (similarities occurs often enough with writers, see RTD’s Miss Foster and Mrs Wormwood… it’s not a positive sign of quality, but there’s no need for that level of derision).
- Either way, no, it doesn’t mean that Moffat’s female characters are “all the same”. Madame Kovarian isn’t Amy Pond, Clara Oswald, or Madame Vastra, at least attempt to keep crit grounded in reality.
- Asking for more variety is a good thing, but condemning a character straight-up for not being that variety inspite of knowing nearly nothing is bullshit.
- Series 7 has seen an increased desire to play with and subvert existing tropes - see Clara’s Impossible Girl arc which ended with her being just an ordinary girl who helped her friend - so who’s to say that this isn’t one of those occasions?
Here’s a novel thought (which won’t mean a thing, because everyone willing to listen is likely already aware of that option): Maybe we could, idk, judge a character on her own merits when she actually appears on the show.
People complaining that Danny Pink has no character development when he hasn’t been in any episodes yet.
Or, to be fair, they’re actually saying that he’s not going to have any character development.
1. How can you know?
2. You are going to miss any character devlopment he does have because of confirmation bias.
3. I know this is a show about time-travel, but can we please refrain from timey-wimily hating things that don’t exist yet?
I think the argument that Amy, River, and Clara are the same sexist character is, in itself, at least a bit of a sexist argument.
People skip over the fact that Amy Pond is a stubborn willful outsider (keeping her accent and never giving in to her therapists). Even as she builds a real life for herself, she’s still waiting for the man who promised to take her away from it. So she runs away the night before her wedding because as much as she loves her fiance, the only thing scaring Amy Pond is facing reality when she’s not sure she’s ready. But the more she sees of the universe, the more secure she becomes in her choices and as she ages, she realizes she’s still running off with the doctor to avoid living a real life. Finally, after over 20 years and nearly being destroyed by it, she stops waiting for The Doctor and she stops running from reality. But.. all that is overshadowed because shes likes sex, worked as a kissogram, wears short skirts, and likes hot roman soldiers.
People skip over the fact that Clara Oswald only travels with the Doctor on Wednesdays because her loyalty to her current life and responsibilities comes before her own selfish interests. Her mother died and she won’t walk out on her responsibilities to two children who lost their own mother. Still, her mother left her with a book of places to see and she won’t give up on that either. So, she doesn’t compromise. She lives both lives. But… all that is overshadowed because she called the Tardis a snog box and wears short dresses. Even though her sexuality is almost entirely unexplored in her first series with the show, people still define her by it.
People skip over the fact that River Song went from believing she held no purpose in life but murder to become a woman who is both happily married and happily following her own way in life (choosing twice on screen not to travel full time). But despite all the progress, she’s still a self admittedly damaged woman who tries to hide just about everything because she has to and because she doesn’t want to hurt her family or herself… except she wears her heart on her sleeve. She never really successfully buries her feelings of love or the damage it does to her even when she tries. But… all that is overshadowed by the fact that she carries a gun, flirts whenever she cares to, and likes sex with her husband.
It seems that if you make a woman sexual, that’s all some people see, but that’s far from the reality of the characters. Can’t a woman be secure in her sexuality and even display it proudly without it being the only thing people take her for?
The idea that Clara and Amy are the same character is as accurate as saying Donna and Rose are the same character. It isn’t… unless you boil them down to single traits and pick one that matches.
I wouldn’t even define their sexuality in the same terms. Amy is overtly sexual, River is a true flirt, and Clara is your normal intelligent girl with enough wit to make a few flirtatious remarks when the situation calls for it.
I’m not arguing that these are all perfectly written characters at every step, but you can only argue that they are the same basic character by willfully ignoring the facts about them and just focusing on their sexuality and some one liners they’ve made.
If you don’t, it’s this one ,you know, the one that’s rallying for a successful and award winning writer to lose his job over a couple of problematic things he’s said in interviews. It makes me feel…well…a little angry I suppose. Moffat’s a man who inspired me, who catered for me and who saved me with his writing, and the way people treat him is grossly undeserving.
I wanna say first of all that Moffat never does great interviews. He has shit self esteem (partly from being disgustingly bullied as a child, partly from being disgustingly bullied as an adult via the internet) and he often words things awkwardly. He has said a few problematic things (his comment about the female Sherlock fandom, while obviously down to ignorance rather than misogyny, really should have been left in his head) but this article is so full of gross misinterpretartions, out of context quotations and in some cases, a lack of understanding of Moffat and his shows that its frustrating…this is gonna be a long one…
lol that article on the Daily Dot.
Interesting news guys. Steven Moffat is now responsible for everything that happens on Doctor Who including things written by Russell T Davies. He is also responsible for quotes that have been repeatedly shown to be made up by sensationalist tabloid journalists.
There are a few legitimately problematic things in that little diatribe—not particularly worse than if you were to note down all the most poorly-worded comments that anybody made over a period of years—but any legitimate point is thoroughly undermined by the fact that the author shows they are willing to grab on to any piece of evidence they can get hold of that Steven Moffat is the devil, even if it’s nonsense.
Apparently people can now get paid actual money to reword the contents of stfum for some internet tabloid.