The Doctor Forever
"Everyone knows that everyone dies. And nobody knows it like the doctor. But I do think that all the skies in all the worlds might just turn dark, if he ever accepts it."
Every so often, there's something so sensational and so...cool, that I can't help but take a second to rant about it. Today, it's Doctor Who.
No other show I have seen, no other fictional character I have ever known has been such a cacophonous montage of impact. Doctor Who, (actually, he's only known as "The Doctor") can make your mind bend, your spirit soar and your heart break all in the same episode - sometimes in the same instant.
You'll have to pardon me, I am fresh off the "Silence in the Library" / "Forest of the Dead" two-parter from Series 4, but these two confusing, pulsing, freakishly frightening, ingenious episodes inspired me to try to transcribe why I love the show so much to begin with. Unfortunately, the episodes I just watched leave me grasping for words; raving about how great it was, but woefully incapable of explaining why. I suppose anything truly worthwhile does that to you.
Moreso recently, I've been turning on the TV (and, thanks to this past Christmas, the DVDs) and turn 40 minutes over to the Doctor. What ends up happening is I wind up feeling exactly like the Doctor's companions...wanting to shout "I hate you, d'ya know that?!" at the same time I'm marveling at the brilliance and cleverness.
In reality, my feelings are towards the writers and various multitudes responsible for bringing the Doctor to the small screen. I want to attack them and applaud them all at once for compiling happiness and heartbreak, love and confusion and hope and fear into one delicious jumble of a plot, keeping you on the edge of your seat right up to the end. I'm often left wondering mid-episode how on earth they can finish an episode when they only have 15 minutes left, much less have it make sense, and unless they go for the torturous two-parter, it always does.
The next thing I'm often left wondering is..."how could you do that to us??" Perhaps it takes extreme suspension of disbelief to enter the world of Doctor Who so completely that you're left with a heartbreaking bitter sweetness at the end of so many episodes. The majority of episodes I've seen so far leave you as sad as a teardrop, but, as my sister aptly summarized, it's not the kind of sadness that makes you wish you hadn't participated. You know how some things, extremely rare things, are beautiful enough to make you cry? I think it stands to reason that the flip side is something that is so sad it is beautiful. I further posit that while these two concepts exist independently of each other, they are most often found together, and perhaps most often in drama. Lord of the Rings exemplifies this sort of sentiment also; there are moments of pain and sadness so exquisite and rare, even if in drama, that you would not have missed it for the world, because it is beautiful despite hurting.
More importantly, it takes you beyond. Beyond yourself, beyond your conceptions of drama, life, the universe, everything. That's what Doctor Who lends itself to.
The Doctor inspires me. I know, he's fictional, he's a role played by an actor. (Actually several.) I'm still not sure how to reconcile that, but he does. He inspires the already-existent desire to be the nightmare of evil, the one guy that stands firm when everyone else won't.
"The Doctor showed me a better way of living your life. That you don't just give up. You don't just let things happen. You make a stand. You say no. You have the guts to do what's right when everyone else just runs away." - Rose Tyler
Thanks to Doctor Who, I know why most living beasts rightfully fear the dark, who it really is when you see movement in the mirror out of the corner of your eye and what really happens to statues when you're not looking. And there's now no doubt in my mind about who is superior in the Star Trek vs. Doctor Who debate.
Take a second some time and see for yourself, won't you?
"Some days are special. Some days are so, so blessed. Some days, nobody dies at all. Now and then, every once in a very long while, every day in a million days, when the wind stands fair and the Doctor comes to call...everybody lives."