Doctor Who fandom, what the fuck? I've finally become too fed up to handle it. I sit down to do my daily view of the DW icon comms, david-tennant.com, tmz.com, and my DW sites, when I discover that ooooooh! Juicy spoilers for Saturday's episode.
Okay, so here's what The Daily Star said.
It's taken him a thousand years or so, but the Doctor has finally pulled. Yes, the Time Lord is getting a Time Lady...In Saturday's episode the Doctor meets Professor River Song, played by the lovely Alex Kingston of ER and Moll Flanders fame.
River is an archaeologist from the 51st century and soon makes it clear that she's had a very close encounter with the Doctor in another time. A show source says: "The Doctor introduces himself to River Song, and it becomes clear they've been an item - but in the future."
Eventually romance blossoms and is actually played out over two episodes, reaching a climax (so to speak) next week. In the past, the Doctor has flirted with his female sidekicks but despite the occasional peck on the cheek they've never gone the distance..
But this is obviously a match made in heaven - Professor Song has her own sonic screwdriver.
And it's a Moff episode. Let me just explain to you what I think about Steven Moffat, in case you weren't aware, and you very well may not be.
In a recent study, 99% of MJs adored Steven Moffat over Jesus, the other 1% are worried that they may be pregnant and they're praying that they're not. The Moff (as he will be referred to from here on out, since my spouse says I'm not allowed to call him "Steven") has produced some of the best television I've ever watched. Not merely his Doctor Who episodes ("Curse of Fatal Death", "The Empty Child", "Girl in the Fireplace", and "Blink"), he's also written some damn amazing television (Jeykll, Press Gang, Coupling, to just name a few). The Moff is the sort of writer I want to be like when I grow up, so quite frankly the Radio Times could say that the episode was about a bowl of mayonnaise sitting in the sun and I wouldn't have any doubt in my mind that it would be the most mind-bending condiment decomposition that I've ever seen.
So, on the forums do I hear people raving about past episodes, excited about the new? No, of course not. Is it speculation about the Doctor's past and future? No, of course not. It's a straight-up bitchfest about how the Moff is messing up the Ten/Rose OTP of AMAZING.
A few highlights from the thread that broke the River news:
What happened to Rose! My, he's a fickle lad!
NO, no, no, no, non, niet, nada, never; Please, just say no.
Not with Rose returning in two episodes.
Just imagine poor Donna having to tell Rose "Errr, sorry, I know that you love him and that everybody, the actors, the producers, the writers say that you're the girl he loves, but, well... I met his future wife, and she wasn't you, honey"???
Huh, who needs Davros and the daleks? Rose will kill the Doctor herself! LOL!
(And then marry the Master)
well, isn't that a suprise. another reinette, eh? *chuckles* can't say i'm too worried- "song" must end soon, no? but i am a bit pissed off. 3 weeks before rose enters and this? *shakes head sadly*
And then we get not quite 105 comments worth of Reinette-bashing. It's a bit like reopening a rather nasty wound that I thought had finally closed over in the Who fandom. Why? Because Moff created Reinette as well and she was ZOMG trying to take the Doctor away from Rose, just like this new character is clearly going to do right before the triumphant return of the OTP.
WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU, DOCTOR WHO FANDOM?
Now, let me get one thing straight before I continue (because this is where the meat of my frustration lies): I love Doctor/Rose. I think they're wonderful together, I love Billie Piper, and I bawled like a GD baby when he looked up to Ida in "Satan Pit" and said, "Just tell her…oh, she knows." OF COURSE SHE KNOWS! He didn't even have to say "I love you" at the end of "Doomsday" because Rose knew! I'm both equally nervous and excited about the season finale: Excited because I do so love Rose, and nervous because their parting was so beautiful and wonderful that I don't want it to get fouled up by a crappy reunion.
Now, let me get another thing straight: I adored Reinette. My first viewing of "Girl in the Fireplace" left me gaping at my computer screen in awe. I had fallen out of love with Who after "New Earth" and had foregone watching a few episodes because I was quite certain that Chris Eccleston could never be replaced with someone as ridiculous as David Tennant. I was furious and after a few weeks I got over it and downloaded all the episodes I had missed. "Tooth and Claw" was funny, but left me a little bored. "School Reunion" positively infuriated me with the suddenly sappy Sarah Jane (alliteration, people!). What "Girl in the Fireplace" did for me, as a frustrated and fickle fan (another alliteration, I'm on a roll), was make me love the show and the lead character all over again. For the first time, the tenth Doctor wasn't a bouncing monkey, he was a multi-layered and tragic character.
No, the episode was not perfect. Yes, the horse jumping through the mirror was a little ridiculous. And no, Reinette was not Rose. But that's why I loved her.
Maybe I'm lucky because I wasn't spoiler-hunting when GitF aired so I didn't get to see the intense and undying hatred for this character that was spewed before she'd even appeared on the screen. A beautiful blonde 17th-century royal whore? Seducing the ever-so-prude-and-wonderful Doctor? ZOMGWTF? That's where the brilliance of the Moff comes in: She shouldn't work as an identifiable character or as a love interest and yet she does. No, it's not just the amazing sparking chemistry between Sophia Myles and David Tennant, it's also the way the self-sufficient and ambitious courtesan works opposite a lonely and very nearly asexual man. And you know what? The whole episode was romantic, too. And I don't do romance. I like episodes like "Impossible Planet" and "42" where stuff blows up all the time. But GitF brought me around to the idea of a romantic and (dare we say it??) sexual Doctor.
And no, not everyone has to enjoy that episode simply because I loved it. No, not everyone has to like Reinette because I found her to be an amazing character. But what I don't understand is how whofic.com can have 399 stories with the words "Reinette hate" somewhere in the summary, and a comment like this is agreed on!
I'm one of those New Who peoples, but seriously, Girl in the Fireplace is rather useless. I mean, what was the point, other than clocky people brought to life? Couldn't they have chosen a better, more impressive person? I'd never heard of her before this, but then, I don't really care for that branch of history.
Reinette isn't seen as anything but a rival for the Doctor's affections to many of these fans and I don't get that. I don't get it at all. She's a wonderful character in her own right and damn fascinating as a historical figure if you take a moment to look her up. But the fangirls (and boys) out there become so single-minded in the Ten/Rose love that nothing else is even applicable. The Doctor simply can't love someone else!
Nevermind Romana or Sarah Jane or Grace or any of the other tension-filled relationships the Doctor's had in the past! I mean, for serious, people. It's like the Moff himself said on the rec.arts.drwho forums back during the great Grace debate of 96: I mean, the guy has one snog in thirty years of saving our planet and you're all complaining! You utter, utter bastards!!
It's true! What is the big freaking deal??
A response to one of my Ten/Reinette fics that I still get a little boiled over:
You know, this was really hard for me to read because I want to just forget that the GITF ever existed ... (except that the Doctor chose to come back to Rose, of course.)
Did we watch the same episode? I mean, honestly. Or were you burning holes into the screen during the tender scene where the Doctor ran back only to find a grieving Louis? The episode was beautiful and it didn't damage the relationship between the Doctor and Rose, it simply made it more real feeling to me. There's no way a man of 900 would be pure and chaste, just like you know Rose and Mickey weren’t just hand-holding prior to her living on the TARDIS. Saying he's only Rose's is ridiculous. More importantly, saying that Reinette is some sort of enemy of Rose's is (for the lack of a better word) stupid! Again, did we watch the same episode? Am I the only one that saw the beautiful scene between Rose and Reinette where they shared their mutual feeling that the Doctor was "worth the monsters"?
But maybe I'm becoming that which I hate: the irrational ranter.
I know that Doctor Who can bring out the obsessive in any fan, it's the nature of the show. I will admit to writing ridiculous amounts of fanfic, creating videos, and even having a framed photograph of William Hartnell on my desk at work (when asked, "Is that your father?" the correct answer is always, "No, that's my boyfriend"). Obsession and the DW fandom go hand in hand, that's why it's survived for 45 years. But there's a level of obsession that Ten/Rose has reached in the minds of many fans that has left me frustrated and, frankly, a little turned off to the whole OTP in general.
Not since Tess VS Liz have I seen the split that seems to form in the DW fandom between Reinette lovers (and Martha lovers, and Joan lovers, and Astrid lovers) and Rose lovers. Why can't there be a healthy middle? Why can't GitF (and, frankly, all of the well-written romance in DW) be accepted? Why does fandom_wank have a new Ten/Martha VS Ten/Rose debate every week?
And, perhaps the most important question: Why are you ruining Rose for me, Doctor Who fandom? Why do I and all of my Ten/Reinette love feel cornered off to the side because you can't handle the thought that the Doctor could possibly love someone other than Rose? And why the hell hasn't anyone written Ten/Agatha Christie fic yet? That's just aching to be written, but I think writers are afraid of what will happen when Rose comes back! And the Sisters forbid that Agatha Christie gets shoved into the easily-hated corner along with Reinette, which is where she would be if there was even the slightest bit of romance between her and the Doctor.
I, for one, am excited about Rose's return, but I'm also fucking psyched about "Silence in the Library". If anyone can pull off a storyline like what the Star is reporting, it's the Moff. And I don't doubt that no matter where the Doctor's hearts travel, I will be entertained.
Now, to finish off this epic rant, I leave you with some poetry:
It was once upon a Saturday
I sat at my computer to play
A new Who, oh my!
On a spaceship that flies!
And what to my wondering eyes should appear
But an episode by Steven Moffat (my dear!)
The story was woven around a spaceship (of course)
That contained pre-revolutionary France and a horse
And for the first time appearing on my little computer screen
Was Madame de Pompadour (dressed stylishly in green)
What can I say, I was at once smitten
With the ambitious and stubborn French royal kitten
She snogged the Doctor properly then bounded off with a smirk
And toured the Doctor's mind learning his each and every quirk
And when she died the Doctor was ever so sad
She was the most interesting companion he never had!
I sobbed and I sobbed then that night to the net
I went around looking on whofic for more of Reinette!
But what did I find? Was it loving, oh no
But a swarm of fangirls proclaiming her a big ho
"She's vicious and evil beneath the French courtesan veneer!"
Perhaps I was missing something, but from my sight
The sassy Madame de Pompadour was all right.
She moved with such grace, she carried such style
And Sophia Myles stole my heart with her smile.
But to say such a thing on the forums I was beat
Knocked around like a piece of n00b-Who meat.
"Why do you hate Rose?" they demanded of me.
"Who said that I hated her?" Or couldn't they see?
It's possible for the Doctor to love more than just Rose
He's over 900 years old (or didn't they know?)
And a romance is the crux of the whole bloody story
(Much better than running from Daleks in a quarry!)
But now there appears to be some great divide
With the Rose and the Reinette lovers on opposite sides
But what's the cause of all this friction?
For Rassilon's sake, it's only fiction!
There's no Doctor, no Rose, just a script and your TV
Why scream over a love that just couldn't be?
And what's all this hate for the poor River Song?
The episode hasn't even aired, they may just get along!
And if they do dance, why fret then Rose fen?
You're getting your Rose back in episode ten!
Go outside for once and try living your life
Then maybe you won't be so pissed if the Doctor has a wife.
OKAY IM DONE NOW.
I AINT BOVVERED.