moffat’s companions’ lives are all so strangely ungrounded in reality and i think it’s a good example of his very weak writing. in day of the doctor we see clara teaching - no explanation, no mention of it in the episode, and no build up to it. although obviously this…
I would argue that Moffat’s companions DO have lives and reasons and motivation for what they’re doing. But we don’t see it, because unlike Davies, Moffat is concerned with the Doctor’s story, not the companions. Moffat’s companion characters are only important to the story re: their impact on the Doctor. Think about how long Rose traveled with the Doctor before the battle of Canary Wharf. Maybe a year? Two? And her time as companion was two seasons on the show. We literally saw every single important event in her life and she didn’t spend any time away from the Doctor- no time for jobs and normal life.
Martha spent the entire time she was with the Doctor talking about her exams, but she didn’t take them while she was travelling with him- she basically paused her life as well to travel with him constantly. And Donna did too. It’s not like she was onscreen changing jobs, except in the flashbacks to before she met him. Martha and Donna’s jobs were important because the careers they were in defined their lives- Martha was all determination, and Donna was all frustration. They weren’t flat characters at all, but their overarching personal lives didn’t really change much because of the Doctor in the end, and so their jobs stayed the same and basically served as a narrative tool to tell us about their personalities.
Amy and Rory, on the other hand: three seasons- ten years of the Doctor, on and off. What we don’t see is the “off” time, which is when all their job changes/life changes are happening. Amy was a kissogram- a student’s job, really, that’s not something anyone does for a lifetime. But she IS pretty, and tall, and obviously model material, plus super outgoing and adventurous, likes risks… why wouldn’t she try modelling, especially at a time in her life when she’s struggling with some personal issues and wants something else intense to focus on? I see that as a natural move for her- just because we don’t see it onscreen doesn’t mean it doesn’t have motivation. And of course her career as a model would lead her to the perfume design thing, those careers go hand in hand. And once she’s back with Rory in a stable relationship again and no longer feeling all the inner turmoil that drove her to a high-intensity job in the first place, she would still have connections at magazines etc. that would allow her to shift gears to writing about travel- something she certainly has background in and the knowledge to write about.
We see Rory at work as well, all through his time on the show. He starts The Eleventh Hour in his uniform, and constantly talks about how he’s a nurse and how he enjoys it and is good at it. The difference between Rory having the same career all the way through from start to finish on the show is that he has to manage to continue that career in his breaks from life with the Doctor, because the Doctor is not his whole life. As far as personal life, his dad appears on the show as well, and he’s a nice well-rounded character as well- no Wilf Mott, but he’s not meant to be. He’s a quiet, steady guy who doesn’t travel much and exactly the kind of man I can see raising Rory- who is just as steady of a man for Amy, who has little stability elsewhere in her life.
Clara teaching is an easy shift too- I mean, what was she planning before? Traveling? That’s not a job you can do long term, and she’s obviously good with kids. She gets her fill of travel with the Doctor, and in between when he’s off doing his Timelord thing, she can go about a normal life, which means getting a perfectly normal job.
I think Moffat is expecting us to assume that all this happens behind the scenes because it really isn’t important to the plot of the show. We get to know the companions personalities through their actions in situations onscreen, but we don’t need all the minutiae of their lives. He does skim over their family lives significantly more than Davies did, but his characters are also not living with family like Rose and Donna were- Amy started out not having a family at all, and Rory is obviously independent from the start. Clara’s dad is a nonentity and her mother is dead- and yeah, I’ll give you, that’s a convenient way to keep from having to deal with a ton of side characters and an extra level of drama in the show.
BUT… I actually like it that way, because in my opinion the Doctor is a sort of godlike, super-hero figure to his companions- no matter how close they get, he will never be human, he will never live a life like theirs. He comes and goes as he pleases because he is basically immortal- he has all the time in the world, he can go and spend a night in River Song’s cell, travel back to the stone age to peek in on some cavemen, go all the way to the year 5 billion, and get back in an hour- or he can do all of that and come back in six months. We don’t need to see his companions waiting on him constantly- that would get boring and they would get whiny.
I also think that the 11th Doctor is trying to keep away from making the mistakes that the 10th made. Tennant’s Doctor got too close to his companions- he gave away his heart to one, knowing it could never be forever; he broke the heart of another by acting too cavalier with her feelings; and the last, well… poor Donna. He had such great times with her, built this wonderful friendship… only to have it ripped away from both of it and destroyed to the point that it endangered her life.
I think that the Doctor was afraid of being that close with anyone, ever again. He has a great relationship with Amy, but he obviously distanced himself after a while… because a lifetime friendship with the Doctor really isn’t possible. No one can travel with him forever. We change, and decay… and he’s realized that. And then once he loses Amy and Rory too… no wonder he didn’t stick around to travel with Clara nonstop. He’s opened up to her after his time living up on his cloud, but he can never have a normal relationship, ever.
I think that the classic Doctors knew that and didn’t care… but the reboot Doctors do care. So to keep himself from caring too much, he lets parts of their lives go by without him. And that’s okay, from a narrative point of view… he ages and develops as a character anyway, and that’s why I watch the show. For the Doctor.
This makes me so happy the notes man
Holy shit are we beating dean in gym shorts???
I THINK WE ARE
They didn’t give him a gun, they gave him a screwdriver to fix things.
They didn’t give him a tank or a warship or a X-Wing fighter, they gave him a call box from which you can call for help.
And they didn’t give him a superpower or pointy ears or a heat ray, they gave him an extra heart. They gave him two hearts.
And thats an extraordinary thing; there will never come a time when we don’t need a hero like the doctor.
- WAIT A SECOND
- IF AMY MARRIED KING HENRY VIII
- AND THE DOCTOR MARRIED QUEEN ELIZABETH I
- THAT WOULD MAKE AMY
- QUEEN ELIZABETH’S STEPMOTHER
- WHICH WOULD MEAN
- THAT AMY POND
- IS THE DOCTOR’S MOTHER-IN-LAW
WELCOME TO DOCTOR WHO EVERYBODY