Doctor Who
The Girl In The Fireplace

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | 6 USERS: A+
YOU GRADE IT
Let Them Eat Awesome

And if along with these should come The man I held as half-divine; Should strike a sudden hand in mine, And ask a thousand things of home; And I should tell him all my pain, And how my life had droop'd of late...And marvel what possess'd my brain; And I perceived no touch of change...But found him all in all the same, I should not feel it to be strange. "It's more than just a secret, isn't it?" asks Reinette. His name, she means. Names are the abstract of a concrete thing: your name is the spiritual gate into physical truth. Name a thing and give it meaning, name a thing and it becomes a song of meaning, capable of weaving and being woven. There must be a reason we will never know the Doctor's name, but that's not what we're concerned with right now: we're concerned with the temptation of being named. Being given physical form. Names aren't things, but the ideas of things. The truth of them, outside gross matter. The light, Sophia would say. The dance inspired by the song, Rose might say. Names are ideas that aren't ideas, but rips through that indivisible loneliness. Physical gates into spiritual space. And Reinette's moving in him. "What did you see?" the Doctor asks, terribly young. "That there comes a time, Time Lord, when every lonely little boy must learn how to dance." Reinette smiles, and tenderly takes his hand, and leads him away. To learn to dance, and fall in love, and descend into matter, and not get stuck. To earn a name.

Rose stirs in a room of tick-tock. A clockwork man stares down at her, locked into her chair. She calls the only name she knows: "Doctor?" Mickey's clamped to a table across the room: "Rose? They're gonna chop us up. Just like the crew -- they're gonna chop us up and stick us all over their stupid spaceship." Rose...it would be her memory, perhaps. And Mickey? It would have to be his heart: "And where's the Doctor?" A robot assures Rose that she's "compatible"; Rose stalls, threatening them with her "designated driver." I like that. Especially in a second. The tick-tock man shoves a sharp and scary tool in front of her face, and she stares and speaks faster: "Ever heard of the Daleks? Remember them? They had a name for our friend. They had myths about him, and a name. They called him the..." Another name.

A loud banging draws closer, and drunken singing: "I could've danced all night..." (The rain in Spain falls? Somewhere close to the Powell Estates? The Doctor's picking up their vibrations a lot faster, this time around. He's too lonely not to. Every person he comes across gives him a little bit of the Henry Higgins. The 'Enry 'Iggins of the Estuary; the Pygmalion of Madame de Pompadour. And he could've danced all night, and never become whatever he will be.) Rose is distracted: "They called him the...they called him..." Does he have a name at all? The Doctor staggers in, dancing with an imaginary partner, sunglasses and a necktie around his head. Somehow he makes it work. "And still have begged for moooore/I could've spread my wings and done a thou--" He breaks off, looking at Mickey: "Have you met the French? My...GOD, they know how to party." Rose rolls her eyes: "Look at what the cat dragged in. The Oncoming Storm." Rose rules! The Doctor makes a face: "Oh, you sound just like your mother." Or his: "What've you been doing?" Rose demands. "Where've you been?" The Doctor camps around: "Among other things, I think I just invented the banana daiquiri a few centuries early!" Rose falls back onto her table, exasperated. "Do you know, they've never even seen a banana before!" says the Doctor. He leans over her, earnestly: "Always take a banana to a party, Rose. Bananas are good." (They're the opposite of weapons; they symbolize growth and change rather than destruction. You used to be able to get a pretty kick-ass sonic blaster in this century, from the weapon factories of Villengard, but there's a banana grove there now.) The Doctor toddles around, absolutely delighted, shouting at the clockworks: "Oh ho ho ho ho! Brilliant! It's you! You're my favorite, you are! You are the best! Do you know why? 'Cause you're sooo thick. You're Mister Thick Thick Thickity Thick Face from Thicktown, Thickania." (Again, not my style of humor.) "...And so's your dad." (Much better.)

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Doctor Who

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