On The Sofa (6)

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    lisa @lisa

    @bluesqueakpip I just read your piece on time travel in the Whoverse and it
    is brilliantly done! I have spent time also trying to get my head around
    fixed points and so forth and you beautifully helped me clear away some foggy bits.
    Thanks for that!

    ichabod @ichabod

    @bluesqueakpip   Watson is definitely straight; but Watson is also someone not-scared of loving a man very deeply. He just won’t be sexually attracted to that man.

    Yes; like CapDoc and Clara, actually, or at least that seems to me to be one clear way to read them.  If that’s the core of the central relationships that Moffat is working on in both of these shows, in both instances there are fans dying to have the two sets of friends turn the connection sexual.  It’s like magnetism — the fascination with the figure of undeclared or ambiguous sexuality, who must be clapped together in bed at last with the great good friend so everybody can breathe a sigh of relief.  This idea is the root of a lot of fan  fiction, particularly Kirk and Spock at the beginning or K/S, as it was originally called.  This then became “Slash” fiction for the / between the initials of the friends’ names, which has gone on to be applied to just about every possible pairing in popular screen fiction (Starsky/Hutch, Steed/Peel, Batman/Robin, Harry/Draco, etc.).

    The irresistible force (love and/or sex) meets the immovable object, and the immovable object moves, however reluctantly.  I suppose at heart it’s plain old Love Conquers All including personal frostiness and same-sex taboos.  The writers don’t need to install it in the characters — fans will eagerly supply it spontaneously, more so now in times of more fluid ideas about human sexuality than back in the last century.  Apparently, the thrill has not gone despite the increased acceptance of LGBTQ love and sexuality, cuz Slash rolls on into robust porn can now end up — agh, surely this is not a good result — as a best seller called 50 Shades of Bleh and its no doubt endless parade of sequels and imitations.

    ichabod @ichabod

    @phaseshift   The proposed thread for Faith, Philosophy, Myth, and Reason sounds promising.  You could build it (well, a foundation anyway, using some of those older posts) and see if we will come . . . Or keep the earlier posts as an unofficial FAQ on what people have said about these issues that doesn’t need to be gone over again, unless you want to bring new elements to the table?

    @bluesqueakpip & others — Yep, the monk thing’s been done, I forgot.  So maybe a lighthouse, although you don’t need a lighthouse for isolation and meditation when you’ve got a TARDIS.

    It *was* the Sherlockians who brought the games of story fandom into being, wasn’t it?  One of the lawyers in my husband’s firm was an active member of the local Baker Street Irregulars, and loved talking about it.  I was tempted to join — but I needed something more SFnal and open ended to play with, not a very limited and closed system of canonical works.  So, inevitably perhaps, Doctor Who . . .


    ichabod @ichabod

    @lisa   Wonderful!  Thanks for that link.

    lisa @lisa

    I’ve been catching up on post reading and the one thing we all can agree on is that
    Doctor Who is remarkably effective story telling!

    Last season had lots of old myths and tales about mortality and morality etc. it looks
    like this season might have lots of new stories about science/technology/magic.
    Its always a show that injects enlightenment, leaving us all questioning how and what
    to think and/or believe.

    There is no other show version like this. Not for me.

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    Not sure Faith, myth and Reason would have enough ongoing momentum to be a thread on its own but I think it’s definitely crying out for a blog

    ScaryB @scaryb

    Late night viewing for the sofa.

    A gently quirky little video, going back to 1992 – Reverse the Polarity – a diary piece documenting a day in the life of Jon Pertwee as he does some promotion for the new VHS (VHS!!!) video release of ‘Doctor Who: The Pertwee Years.’  Lots of interviews with the very charming  JP, with his thoughts about his time as the Doctor (and other things); cut in with  some tributes and memories from fans and  Richard Franklin (who played Mike Yates during Jon’s tenure as the doctor), those bits recorded in Brighton (1999).

    Just been dusted off and put on line very recently for fans’ enjoyment apparently.


    Anonymous @


    I thought it was Richard harris until I read the accompanying paragraph. Thank yup

    (Cripes it’s raining outside. It never ever rains. I need a brolly and a coat. Don’t even know where they are. Must search….)

    Arbutus @arbutus

    @phaseshift    Given the level of knowledge and perspectives we have on the site, is it worth trying to open up a new forum thread – Say Faith, Philosophy, Myth and Reason in Doctor Who or a Blog?

    I think this is a great idea. We have already had loads of discussion at various times on this kind of thing. It’s a pretty broad topic, so that people who are put off by the “faith” discussion (like me, frankly) might be interested in one of the other branches. I always find discussion of mythology in DW interesting, and as you say, there are people here with loads of knowledge. I like the idea of a thread, because they are easier to come back to later on.

    Barbara Lefty @barbaralefty

    I know loads of people will have done it already but…



    I have loads of pics of a very very happy Wee Lefty but they all have other peoples’ kids in them so instead –  what she did when she went to out of school club today! That there is a Hamma bead TARDIS, ladies and gents.

    I am a very happy momma today 🙂

    janetteB @janetteb

    @barbaralefty. Lovely pic. Thank you for sharing that. I am glad that Wee Lefty had such a lovely time. What a pity that we have to be so cautious about posting pics these days. It is hard to imagine what harm there can be in sharing images of children having fun. A sad reflection or our Tabloid-ised society.

    I was able to take our boys to the Doctor Who Experience back in 2007  when AG Who was still in its infancy and the exhibition no doubt a poor precursor to what it is now. I had planned to take them castle hunting but when we saw the posters for the exhibition medieval stone heaps lost their appeal. Just being in Cardiff and visiting some of the locations used was excitement enough. We were rather inclined to shout afterwards, “we’ve been there” when viewing. (We had spent the past five days visiting castles .)





    Missy @missy

    Hello again. As I’ve only just worked out how to navigate the board and answer people, I’ve gained more confidence.
    However, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to read all your posts, but when series 9 arrives, I shall be in at the kill – so to speak. *grins*


    lisa @lisa

    BRILLIANT viewing!!

    Missy @missy


    Wonderful interview. I’m a great admirer of Peter Capaldi, but after this, an even great one.

    Thank you.

    Missy @missy


    Hello there linda, I too am new here and just finding my way around.

    Isn’t it a relief to find people who can join you in your obsession.

    Anonymous @

    @barbaralefty @janetteb

    I know what you mean about pics -and the beads!! I remember making some wine coasters out of beads when I was about 9 years of age. They’re back in style.

    I was in Cardiff in 2004 during the filming of bits of Who. I actually asked some passers-by, “what is this thing?”

    Rather rudely, upon receiving a response: “We think they’re re-doing Dr Who,” I said “Oh, no, that can’t be good. I like the original. It’s gonna be awful.”

    The poor chap was virtually speechless but managed to blurt, “give it a charnce miz.” (it could well have been some other show because I didn’t recognise Eccelston or Piper at that point)

    And I did: by episode 3 I was pretty tickled. Something about farting aliens nearly made me turn it all off forever but I’m glad I didn’t.

    @lisa I agree with @missy, great interview. Thank you.

    Kindest, puro.

    Anonymous @

    @lisa interesting interview when Capaldi hit the nail on the head about imagination: the funny creatures with the whispery voices go on to create a whole other image inside your head. The lack of sophistication, then, so to speak, encouraged a child to re-invent those monsters, draw them, be them and talk about them at the school tuckshop.

    Also, a fine mention of Chris E in general; Tennant’s The Girl in the Fireplace; Matt’s Vampires and….

    Charming discussion. Isn’t he superb?? So easy to listen to and interesting. Did you hear his giggle??  🙂 🙂

    The interviewer probably wasn’t expecting so many answers from Capaldi’s ‘favourite list.’

    “He could go back and see his mother.” Nope, Doctor, I don’t think you could do that….Fixed points and…loops…and timey whimey thingies…

    lisa @lisa

    Another YT video asking the question ‘if you are a newbie to Doctor Who
    which episodes should you view to get your head around the whole saga?’
    I have watched his Dr. Who videos during season 8 and found some
    interesting points made now and then here and there in the video and
    comments. (But it can’t of course in any way compete with this forum!) 🙂

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    For the cosplayers out there. Some Who people in there but it’s the teeny tiny Browncoats that got me….

    lisa @lisa

    Was it the Tardis that took all the Doctors to where they needed to be thru a psychic
    connection? I like this idea!

    lisa @lisa

    Not sure if that YT video went thru in previous post- getting a blocked certificate
    message on the page so I will try again another time – sorry folks

    lisa @lisa

    hope this post works this time- this should be the 1 about the Tardis
    telling the Doctors to meet up to save Gaifrey — fingers crossed!

    Anonymous @

    @lisa ta for that:

    You know I always thought that scene where Hurt grabs his head and says “oh that is good” and then so does Tennant…etc to be hokey..

    I felt a little uncomfortable. As if I was unaware of some massive discovery or indeed a massive joke…or so I thought.

    So if the ‘thought’ is sent and then is deleted, it’s like a temporary picture on someone’s phone: like snapchat or some such?

    :Strokes chin:

    Craig @craig

    So I was having a bit of a snooze, and was half asleep and thinking I should go to my bed, when I awoke with a start. And not a moment too soon. We don’t have a sixth Doctor story for this weekend.

    Suggestions are welcome, but in the spirit of six I may just choose whatever I please.

    tardisstowaway @tardisstowaway

    I am a new member and I was just wondering what theories people have on Maisie Williams new character at the end of the series nine trailer. I think she will be important in series nine. Who do you think she is. I know people have been thinking along the lines of Jenny and Susan but one theory I have is that she is the Master’s daughter. I know it’s a far-fetched idea and probably isn’t the case but no-one knows how Steven Moffat’s brain works and after all if the doctor can have children why can’t the Master.

    lisa @lisa

    @tardisstowaway Go to the spoilers for season 9 page. My idea is that it might be Ace.
    I based it on a few small bits of stuff but mostly the fact that there maybe Vikings
    in this episode she is part of and Ace was a wolf of Fenric who was in the Viking Mythology.
    She was a seventh Doctor companion. That’s my guess however I gotta say my guessing track
    record is a sorry thing 🙁

    Anonymous @

    @tardisstowaway  ****reference to a spoiler*****:

    thanks for ruining the spoiler -I didn’t know abt M……W……..- she’s in Who now?

    OK. As to her position in the show. No idea. Pls visit the:

    a) etiquette page for usage alerts

    b) check the spoiler and home pages for how to use this Forum

    Anyway, welcome to the site and hope you enjoy the theorising on the programme: particularly when the show begins. The Home Page has, thanks to @craig, a count down clock which is huge fun. As are the theorists on these pages. It’s a wonderful, welcoming forum with lots to see and do.



    tardisstowaway @tardisstowaway

    Really Sorry I’ll move to the spoiler forum . Thanks

    fortheloveoftheatre @fortheloveoftheatre

    So I have a bit of a random question… it’s not so much Doctor Who specific but more about British phrasing vs. American phrasing…

    As I’ve watched Doctor Who (New Who), I’ve often heard the characters use the phrase ‘you aren’t half [insert descriptive word here]’… Like somebody might say ‘The Doctor isn’t half mad’ or The Doctor might say ‘You aren’t half stupid’

    That confuses me… isn’t that like a double negative or something… it sounds like it means the opposite of what they’re saying like… ‘You aren’t half stupid’ sounds like it’s actually saying the person is being smart instead of stupid… I don’t know… I mean I know by context that the character is actually saying The Doctor is crazy or that the random human is being an idiot… but it’s just a really weird way of saying ‘The Doctor is really crazy’ or ‘you’re being totally stupid’…

    It’s just weird… can somebody explain like the grammar of it or whatever? Thanks in Advance!

    Anonymous @


    oh now come on! This isn’t typically ‘British’ (perhaps it’s Scottish 🙂 ). We have this phrase in Oz and it’s prevalent in the States as well.

    One use: “you aren’t half stupid” means exactly that. You aren’t even half stupid. You’re much less than that (ergo Oz cricket team).

    Second way: you are exactly stupid: half or more, but you’re still stupid. This is because stupid is “binary”. You cannot be partly stupid. You are stupid. Or you are not. You cannot be “almost stupid” therefore you can’t be “half stupid.”

    The book Uses and Abuses of Language is probably arcane now but you could locate it on line. It gives you an entire page describing this statement which summary I’ve given you above. The equivalent is found in the statement “if I had half a brain” a rather foolish insult as it’s not technically possible. However, I can understand the confusion in the ‘double negative’ which isn’t really a double negative – it’s derivative….from what…hang on…that’s on (flicking through) …

    page… .139.



    Stormaggeddon @stormy72

    <span style=”color: #666666;”>@purofilion</span>

    Hi! Just to add something to the conversation now and then: You wrote

    the statement “if I had half a brain” a rather foolish insult as it’s not technically possible.

     I’m sorry to contradict, but technically it is possible to have half a brain – and survive. A prominent example is Michelle Mack, who made her state public to encourage others who suffer this deformation. There are more examples, and these people seem to live normal lifes.

    Live long and prosper and may the force be with you! So say we all!

    Mudlark @mudlark

    @fortheloveoftheatre   @purofilion    Re the expression ‘it isn’t half … ‘ you aren’t half …’  I think it probably comes within the definition of litotes  i.e. a figure of speech or rhetorical device in which an affirmative is expressed by understatement or by negating its opposite  – similar to ‘This isn’t bad’ meaning ‘its good’.

    Pace puro, it certainly is, or at least used to be a typically British expression.  I associate it particularly with London speech  ‘It ain’t ‘alf ….’ , though I may be mistaken in that,  but I can certainly remember it in fairly widespread use, especially among schoolchildren.  A variant could also be used to emphasise agreement, as in:  ‘This is fun, isn’t it?’  ‘Not half!’

    It may be that this particular usage is going, or has gone out of use – perhaps younger members of the forum could say (at which point I will retire to my rocking chair and my knitting – or would if I could knit; but at least I have the rocking chair, bought by my great grandmother shortly after her marriage in 1861).





    Anonymous @


    it’s common in parts of the US (or was when I worked there) and it’s very common in Oz. Again, amongst the ppl around whom I live/work/buy my groceries. But again, all this is just identity/story politics which I really can’t stand. What I’m writing is what came from Uses and Abuses Of….(as I wrote above) and also my own personal ‘story’ -and that’s all it is.

    @stormageddon yeah, well that just proved me right.

    I’m not going to be drawn on this any more. I should have left this for some other half… anyway…..

    Missy @missy

    The expression “You ain’t half” was used all the time in London when I was younger. As far as I know (I’ve never gone into it) this is simply an expression used by Londoners.

    I can understand some thinking it odd and bad English, but for me using the words “I guess” in place of “I suppose” is far worse and extremely bad grammar. surely it should be I’d guess, or I would guess?


    Anonymous @


    Yeah I probably should have said nothing there!  dear oh, dear, I need to get a big grip, I really do. My apologies as I re-read my comment. Your knowledge of these things precedes mine.

    So yes, I agree with you: it’s British but I also meant that it’s also something common in Ireland where the Husband grew up and possibly other parts of the UK.

    In my experience ppl often think being British could mean being Irish, for example. Our new friend from America may not know this: but I shouldn’t assume.

    Also, what I meant about Identity Pols is that stories tend to dominate & become ‘history’: “I saw/heard this” and therefore “it means this…” It’s a conundrum because unless one looks at, say the appendices in the pre-edit to the Surgeon of Crowthorne, there’s not really a positive discussion to be had about this particular statement. The only other thing one can probably trust (but then again, is it also Identity/story politics, I’m not sure: but see Oprah right now with her “getting it” world tour!) would be Donna Tartt and Marg Atwood’s lectures at their respective universities/colleges.

    Kindest, puro (going to get ‘a grip’!)

    Also: dear God, we just lost the Ashes. Or should I say, “they retain them,” right there on screen. I need a drink…this was a dreadful loss. I hope Clarke retires….But would that make any difference?

    Anonymous @

    Hoh!!  Has Clarke just announced his retirement ?? Has he been pushed? Good grief, it’s happenin’. Oh, I really need to go the Pub now. What an ignominious defeat.

    He’s only 34! he looks 45! But he’s “played over 100 Tests” -now they’re drooling, Warne and Clarke.

    OK. A beer.

    IndigoMoose @indigomoose

    I was encouraged to put one of my theories here.

    We know from Trial of a Time Lord that all TARDISes up-load their adventures to a place called the Matrix. (We also know from that set of episodes that Time Lords can tamper with the Matrix and alter / add stories.)

    We know from a number of episodes that a TARDIS is sentient. In this way, a TARDIS is a witness, not a recording device. When it shows adventures, it is telling a story, complete with its own prejudices, objectives, and assumptions.

    Part 1 of my theory: After the trial demonstrated how unprotected the Matrix was, the Time Lords moved the Matrix off-world and put other safe-guards in place. We (on Earth, in this part of the multi-verse) are intercepting adventure stories that the Doctor’s TARDIS was up-loading to the Matrix. Because the TARDIS is telling a story, it makes sense that it would gloss over details and boring bits. It is also possible that parts are exaggerated and details changed for dramatic effect.

    Part 2 of my theory: It takes more than exaggeration, and skipped details to justify the multitude of inconsistencies or simply dumb stories that Doctor Who has presented over the years. Again, as a sentient being, it is possible that the TARDIS could succumb to senility, delusions, loss of sobriety, and dimentia. It is also possible that the TARDIS is lying to protect a secret.

    Sometimes I watch Doctor Who episodes with the volume on low, pretending that the subtitles are highly suspect. It doesn’t save every episode I dislike, but it works for me most of the time. It has allowed many of other head cannons (my own and others) to thrive long after the TV show “proved” them wrong.

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave


    Actually, that it a rather cool theory–the idea (as I understand you) that the stories we see are being told (and interpreted/edited?) by the TARDIS.

    It reminds me a bit of mythic sagas or of the type of storytelling in first nation cultures. I am still not sure I can quite get my head around it (possibly revealing my positivist tendencies).

    It is also remarkable for giving a central importance to perhaps the most notorious season of Who. Any theory that can be based on The Trial of a Timelord deserves respect!

    Off to think about it some more…

    lisa @lisa

    @indigomoose Someone recently theorized (apologies cant recall who) that the Tardis
    may also be psychically connected with all the Doctors which could be
    how they all knew to arrive at the same place and time to save Galifrey.
    If this is so then it would be very interesting to see the Doctor having
    more ‘conversations’ with the Tardis either thru a psychic means or some
    different mechanism because if the Tardis is keeping blueprint of everything
    in its ‘mind’ that could be very useful.

    Craig @craig

    @ everyone (who is interested), there was new trailer launched today, just an hour ago.

    For those who want to see it I’ve posted it with the others on the “BBC Approved Spoilers” blog.


    I’m not saying anything here!

    ichabod @ichabod

    @craig  Oh, the spoiler thread will ignite tonight!  (Um.  Of course it *is* tonight, here and there)  Thanks for the link!


    Arbutus @arbutus

    @indigomoose    This is cool. We’ve rambled a lot in the past about DW as mythology, stories, fables, and related things. If the Tardis is the one telling us the stories, it could explain a lot about the Doctor as we are shown him: sometimes a hero, sometimes a buffoon, sometimes mad man in a box, depending on how the Tardis is feeling about him at the time!  🙂

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    @indigomoose — I do like the idea of a ‘senile’ TARDIS. Like it a lot. I seem to remember an old Marvel comic strip flirting with the idea of the ‘untrustworthy’ TARDIS — the Stockbridge Horror, I think.

    ichabod @ichabod

    @jimthefish  A “senile” TARDIS?  So Doctor #1 should have stolen a newer model?  And Clara misdirected him to one that would descend into dementia before the Doctor himself ever would?  We need Perkins!  Fix those stacks, or whatever the heck they are!

    crieshavok @crieshavok


    So the 12th doctor assumed the face of Lucius Caecilius Iucundus during his adventure with Donna in Pompeii. In Deep Breath he asks why this face, why did he choose this face. I was re-watching  The Fires of Pompeii and I caught this and that question began to make a lot more sense….


    They reach Caecilius’ villa. The family is crouching on the ground, hugging each other, crying.

    God save us, Doctor!

    The Doctor looks at them, then turns away and enters the TARDIS.

    No! Doctor you can’t!

    She knows she should go, but can’t leave them behind.


    The TARDIS engines start working. Donna finally runs inside.

    You can’t just leave them!

    <b>THE DOCTOR</b>
    Don’t you think I’ve done enough? History’s back in place and everyone dies.

    You’ve got to go back! Doctor, I’m telling you, take this thing back! (after a pause, quietly) It’s not fair.

    <b>THE DOCTOR</b>
    No, it’s not.

    But your own planet… It burned.

    <b>THE DOCTOR</b>
    That’s just it. Don’t you see, Donna? Can’t you understand? If I could go back and save them then I would, but I can’t. I can never go back, I can’t. I just can’t, I can’t.

    DONNA (in tears)
    Just someone. Please. Not the whole town. Just save someone.

    The Doctor gives her a long look, before finally making up his mind.

    The TARDIS rematerializes in Caecilius’ villa. Surrounded by blinding light, the Doctor reaches out his hand to Caecilius.

    <b>THE DOCTOR</b>
    Come with me.


    Gallifrey = Pompeii however if he could save someone…who is it going to be?

    The revelation could just be a nod back to the day of the doctor, but I tend to not ignore co-incidence in a Moffatt Storyline…


    Anonymous @


    Well, that makes sense to me. I must pop that DVD on again. You know, as I read out that script, I found myself saying all the Doctor’s lines in Capaldi’s voice -interesting, no? It’s as if it fits equally a Tennant or Capaldi storyline. I did find the crazy Pompeii fire monsters a bit ‘ick’ but the Caecilius family were terrific.

    “Come with me” & leave the hell fires burning both here and on Gallifrey.

    It suggests that Capaldi’s Doctor will be the one to find and save Gallifrey from that interminable war and remove it from the pocket universe.

    IndigoMoose @indigomoose

    @crieshavok and @purofilion

    Peter Capaldi also played Head Office Secretary in a tumultuous Torchwood piece, “Children of Earth.” While the Doctor didn’t interact with this character, I’d be disappointed if no one in the show acknowledged this connection – especially since UNIT is back in the picture.

    Also, Peter Capaldi isn’t the only Doctor Who actor that was previously a different charactor. Colin Baker played Commander Maxil and Lalla Ward played Princess Astra then Romana II. I feel that whatever explanation Moffat puts forth should bother to incorporate these instances as well. Romana actually had a rather drawn-out scene where she was testing out different bodies before settling, whereas the Doctor’s regenerations have been relatively rapid. I always attributed this to a female vs. male ability, but now that’s been broken. I thought maybe it was a difference between choosing to regenerate or being forced because of impending death.

    crieshavok @crieshavok

    John Feobisher was a compelling character, but I just don’t find the parallels that I do in Fires of Pompeii. I am almost certain that the hint is there. Something regarding his choice not to destroy the timeLord’s and the daleks.


    Plus yep I know there have been many recastings in doctor who. Most famous for me was Colin Baker as a gyard in a Peter Davidson episode.

    lisa @lisa

    I want to share with everyone these yt videos I have been watching. There is ‘colorful’
    language but quite honestly I like colors. 😉 These are informative and entertaining!
    Basically they are a historical account or BG Who. This is the first 1 I saw and I have
    watched several more since and plan to get to the rest.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip


    I feel that whatever explanation Moffat puts forth should bother to incorporate these instances as well.

    I suspect there is some explanation forthcoming – otherwise why would Moffat have Samuel Anderson play both Danny Pink and Colonel Orson Pink?

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