Doctor Who
A Christmas Carol

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | 2 USERS: B+
One Month Of Honey

Some poor person accosts the Doctor to thank him for yelling at Scrooge and wish him a Merry Xmas and also get inside because, quote, "The fog's thick tonight, and there's a fish warning." While a Christmas carol plays over the PA, the Doctor delights in the CGI fish for awhile, and then when Amy starts asking what the noise is all about, he screams "Christmas Carol!" about sixteen times before he hears himself and realizes he knows how to fix our Scrooge: "Can't use the TARDIS, because it can't lock on. So that ship needs to land, but it can't land unless a very bad man suddenly decides to turn nice, just in time for Christmas Day..."

Which, props for being honest. And of all the things I've grown to sigh about, with this show, I must admit that they've done a marvelous job here of rewriting that old thing to make it wonderful, rather than a hack job. And the Doctor, smiling. There's that too.

A video of Kazran Sardick, age twelve and a half, begins to play on the wall of Scrooge's drafty parlor, surprising and immediately mesmerizing him. Before the kid can even get into discussing his Top Secret Special Project, Scrooge Senior comes running in to hit him about the face and chin, something about the fish which everyone at school has seen but which daddy thinks are too dangerous, must be controlled, "Idiot's Lantern" redux, and the kid yells about how "the singing" lulls the fish and that there's no need to be afraid of them, and then more hitting. The whole time, our Scrooge loves the boy as much as he still fears the father; drawn further and further in.

I spent my whole Christmas break poring over photographs they'd saved, that I never knew about. From another life. I thought they were gone forever, and I went through them again and again and pulled out my favorites and brought them home. I'm still staring at them. And I realized at some point that this is the difference between vanity and narcissism: That my obsession with these pictures of my father, and my mother, these pictures of myself as a young kid, had nothing to do with vanity and everything to do with finding all the pieces of myself. The Doctor puts his hand on Scrooge's shoulder, so calmly and firmly, and swears that he's okay. It was just a movie. There were good parts too. It's over now.

The Doctor, in addition to setting up this little series of visitations, has also engineered it so that every one of Scrooge's servants has won the lottery, all at the same time, and have up and quit. He has also engineered the existence of the lottery, at that. On the video, the boy weeps and his father tells him to keep the windows shut tight. The Doctor and Scrooge watch it together, he can't take his eyes off the screen. He cried all night, desperate to see the fish. He learned life's most invaluable lesson: "Nobody comes."

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Doctor Who




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