October 27th, 2006

Loki riding

The Immortal and the Mayfly

The immortal and the mayfly... Every show that deals with any kind of immortals (including vampires) must contain at least the implications of this theme: the essential tragedy of a relationship between a person who will survive for centuries – or even longer – and a person living out an ordinary human lifespan.

The last two episodes of Dr. Who were wonderful illustrations of this theme. Particularly the episode “The Girl in the Fireplace” where, due to the vagaries of time travel, The Doctor shares an odd kind of love affair with a woman who ages from childhood to death while he experiences less than the passage of one day’s time.

Or the previous episode, where his new companion Rose meets his old companion Sara, and the two women are confronted with the knowledge of the brief period of time each has/will spend with The Doctor. Compared to his lifespan, each of them is like a flash of light, here, then gone.

Every Friday night, I watch the new Dr. Who with a couple of friends, who are *very* familiar with DW canon. It’s an odd experience – I know so much and yet so little about this show.

Dr. Who has *decades* of canon. I’ve been in fandom for way too long to have missed out on the basics. Yet, the only time I’ve ever seen the show was in the 1970s, when a local independent station ran a handful of Jon Pertwee episodes. I just was never grabbed by the concept – so I’m finding it both odd and wonderful that I’m enjoying this version so very much.

So are my friends, who are such long-term fans of The Doctor. And long-time fans can be very hard to satisfy. So their wholehearted enjoyment of the new version just adds to my own enjoyment of these shows.

I do prefer last season’s Christopher Eccleston - what *fantastic* (to coin a phrase!) energy he brought to the role. The lastest Doctor, David Tennant is a bit too young and too pretty for my tastes, but he’s so very good that I forgave him for those “flaws” just about immediately.

I hear Rose is “history” next season, and that perhaps Sara will be coming back? Well, one thing this show apparently *never* does is let itself get stale.