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No comeuppance! Do you hear me? No comueppace?...Doctor Who, 2006 Series

(Another import from LJ. If you've already read it, then you're one of three very special people.)

Isn't there some old saw that goes something like, "Pride goeth before the fall?"

When we last saw our hero, he'd just grown a bunch of hair, lost a considerable amount of weight, and gained a different accent. In short, the Doctor had regenerated before the eyes of a rather confused and frightened Rose (Billie Piper). The 10th Doctor (David Tennant) is a very different sort of man. His long speech on the Syccorax ship certainly establishes himself as his own man, and, although a hint of the 9th Doctor emerges when he kills the Syccorax leader, by the time the Doctor joins the Tylers (and Mickey) for Christmas lunch, we know that the 9th Doctor is long gone, as are his issues of guilt, isolation, and loneliness.

So, what sort of man is this new Doctor--how does his relationship with Rose change--and, to get to our topic, what sort of theme do they play out over the course of the series? Well, in many ways, the 2006 Series is about the smugness of young lovers and the eventual death of all relationships. Chirpy, right? Seriously, though, this series deals with the self-involvement of young lovers, and with self-involvement generally, and the unintended consequences that arise from being solely focused on yourself and your needs. And, as a gentle leitmotif almost, we get the idea that everything ends, quite often because the larger world intrudes.

So, let's examine this meme and it's repetitions and variations:

"The Christmas Invasion": Unintended consequences, as The Doctor's speech causes Harriet to order the ship shot down; PLUS, in a bonus that wouldn't become apparent until the following year, deposing her allowed the Master to become PM. Nifty, no?)
"New Earth": Self-absorption, thy name is Cassandra. Plus, just a nice touch, we get the Doctor and Rose leading Chip/Cassandra back to the olden times, creating Cassandra's own myth about herself. So, yeah, unintended consequences.
"Tooth and Claw": Well, clearly...hello, um...Torchwood, anyone?
"School Reunion": Okay, this one's a bit tricky, but I think Sarah Jane & Rose's jealousies and conversations tie in nicely with the young love and everything dies motifs. Plus, we get the constant reminder of the eventual and unavoidable separation of the Doctor and Rose.
"The Girl in the Fireplace": It seems as if the Doctor and Rose are parted forever, an event which MUST happen, though not today. In a way, we get the unintended consequences idea, also, since, by having a ship named after her in the 51st century, Madame de Pompadour is put in danger in the 18th.
"Rise of the Cybermen"/"Age of Steel": Everything dies. Unless you transfer its brain into a cyber-suit. We also get hints of the unintended consequences/smugness thing with Lumic. Plus, of course, Mickey leaving leans toward the eventual separation.

From here on out, ALL of the Doctor/Rose episodes center on the two of them getting separated in rather extreme ways. While they continue to rescue one another, the writers are all pointing very strongly toward the season's end. We also get unintended consequences ("The Impossible Planet"/"Satan Pit") and a generous helping of smugness.

Of course, all this was leading toward the climax of the season, the greatest example in the NuWho of the sheer destruction that the Doctor's intervention can cause: "Army of Ghosts"/ "Doomsday." Here, all of the chickens come home to roost and the Doctor and Rose finally get their comeuppance. Their actions led to the establishment of Torchwood. Without Torchwood, the story doesn't happen. Period. Just as Rose became the Bad Wolf at the end of the 2005 series, so to do Rose and the Doctor become the creators of their own fate--their (supposedly) permanent separation.

Mind you, none of this is to say that they shouldn't have saved Queen Victoria from a werewolf or fought against the Cybermen on Pete's world. Rather, it is merely to say that actions, all actions, have consequences--and that two young, smug lovers are the worst judges in the world of the effect they have on the people around them.

So, at the end, we have the Doctor, alone, sad, and with a crazy, angry bride in his Tardis. Ignoring the Catherine Tate teaser, the Doctor has yet again become "The Lonely God," which leads nicely to series 2007...or, as I call it, to quote the great Andrew Cartmel, "The Doctor is God."


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