So they've had Lucy Saxon locked up since the Year that Didn't Happen, because "they" are a cult of the Master who have decided to bring him back to life for reasons they're not really that sure about. Luckily, Lucy's in a whole other sleeper group of people who have been working against this, and she contributes to his resurrection party -- which resembles to an eerie degree the opening credits of that early '90s Saturday cartoon version of Wizard Of Oz -- something that makes him all kinds of fucked up. So now he's got powers that include having a skeleton-head sometimes, being in everybody's dreams, jumping, and shooting deadly rays of power out of his bipolar fists. Also, looking way hotter than he, or anybody, should with a bleach job.
The Doctor slags off going to see the Ood because he knows he's going to die and doesn't want to talk about it with them because it is a total bummer, but finally he shows up and they tell him a bunch of floofy nonsense that will make sense later, like who all the people are in this episode and how "he" is going to knock four times, because I don't know if you heard me the first ten times, but that's what's going to happen. Also just seeing the back of Donna's head is enough to make me cry, which is also true for the Doctor. So the Doctor runs into Wilf -- who tracks him down because of the Master being in everybody's dreams, and PS it's the end of the world again, and also there's a spooky old lady because on this show there always is -- and the Doctor admits to Wilf how bad he's been fucking up lately, and also how much he wants to see Donna, and how lonely he is, and maybe some other things I didn't catch because I had stuff in my eye.
So newly hot Master Blaster goes around eating people, but it's okay because mostly they're just homeless or people that drive snack trucks. The Doctor chases him around gross trash landfills for about an hour, and every so often they stop so they can rest and make kissy faces at each other and reminisce about how they are totally in love or whatever.
Then the private army of a billionaire named J. Naismith kidnaps him from the Doctor's clutches and use him to work up this "Immortality Gate" alien artifact left over from the child-murdering smoking dregs of Torchwood so that Naismith's daughter can live forever. They don't know how he's totally tricky, which these immortality people never do. So instead, and after eating an entire turkey, he uses the device to make everybody on Earth -- including Donna's mom and boyfriend, and also Barack Obama -- him. That's right, like Being John Malkovich. It's Wilf, Donna, and the Doctor against a planet full of Masters in different outfits. None of which are as attractive as the aforementioned bleach job/hoodie combo. Except maybe Master-Obama, that was pretty hot too.
But then for some odd (Ood) reason the Time Lords are yelling in the Galactic Senate all kinds of fascist time nonsense and how it's the end of time and where did they come from with their silly hats and Timothy Dalton is just spitting everywhere and the whole world is John Simm, which sounds great in theory but is pretty scary in real life, so of course just to make things worse, sure enough Donna starts remembering everything at once, so her brain starts exploding and the Doctor is freaking out and it's very thrilling and he's going to die. (Water Of Mars recap is due to you shortly, but Christmas and an ill-timed burgling apologize for the delay.) See you NYE!
Matthew Arnold was usually described in terms of contradictions: Both "a man of the world entirely free from worldliness" and "a man of letters without the faintest trace of pedantry," according to Russell. Affecting both foppishness and Olympian grandeur, he read constantly, widely, and deeply. His writings often baffled and annoyed contemporaries with their apparent contradiction between his urbane, even frivolous manner in controversy, and the "high seriousness" of his critical views and the melancholy, almost plaintive note of much of his poetry. TH Warren called him "a voice poking fun in the wilderness." Arnold wrote this about Goethe, in 1850:
Physician of the Iron Age,
Goethe has done his pilgrimage.
He took the suffering human race,
He read each wound, each weakness clear --
And struck his finger on the place,
And said -- Thou ailest here, and here.
TEN: The Love My Own Heart's Missing
"It is said that in the final days of planet Earth, everyone had bad dreams. To the west of the north of that world, the human race did gather in celebration of a pagan rite, to banish the cold and the dark. Each and every one of those people had dreamt of the terrible things to come. But they forgot. Because they must."
This over a shot of the world's moving meridian, and containing a favorite quote of RTD's, from Arnold's poem "Absence." Wilf walks through Christmas on the high street, through all the pageantry and fun. "They forgot their nightmares of fire and war and insanity. They forgot... Except for one." Wilf jerks, breathing, confused; he remembers the Master, laughing madly. He smiles and shakes it off, soon enough. While "God Rest Ye" plays -- "good tidings of comfort and joy!" -- he is suddenly drawn toward a church. Seen from outside time, perhaps it only just changed. Maybe that's why he is drawn there.
Inside, a choir of children is singing. Wilf stands in the back, removing his hat; written on the wall above his head is thanks, for "men who died for their country." Brings to mind Wilf's namesake, and Horace before him: Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori. It's the first clue, but it's too open-ended now to understand: I scatter the words and create myself. I was so focused on Donna last year -- as was the Doctor -- that we didn't really listen to Davros, when he explained that the Children of Time were an army. That for all the Doctor's travels with his women, Maiden and Mother and Crone, he'd never travelled with a man until Jackson Lake. Sure, he had male Companions, but he treated them like children. Sometimes, terribly so.