The Church on Ruby Road

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    Craig @craig

    When she was a baby, Ruby Sunday was abandoned in the snow on Christmas Eve. Now Ruby, grown up, meets the Doctor and may learn the secret of her birth.

    Ncuti Gatwa, as the fifteenth Doctor, takes over the TARDIS for his first epic adventure. He is joined by Millie Gibson, a former ‘Coronation Street’ actor, making her debut as Ruby, the new Doctor’s companion.

    Now living with her adopted mum, Carla, and grandmother, Cherry, her world is about to be turned upside down.

    Little is known about this Christmas Special, but it involves stolen babies and The Doctor and Ruby encountering the mysterious goblins and the Goblin King. There are also musical numbers.

    Michelle Greenidge plays Ruby’s mother and Angela Wynter plays Ruby’s grandmother. Davina McCall is also thrown into the mix, playing herself.

    It is once again written by Russell T Davies and is directed by Mark Tonderai. Tonderai is an experienced director who has previously directed episodes of ‘Gotham’, ‘Castle Rock’, ‘Locke & Key’ and ‘Foundation’. He also directed his self-penned movie ‘Hush’, and other movies such as ‘Stalkers’, ‘House at the End of the Street’ and ‘Spell’.

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    Loved the episode and there were a couple of definite wtf  moments definitely need a second and perhaps a third  viewing.  All I want to say at the moment is who the heck is Anita Dobson really playing.

    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Well I loved it – Gremlins meets It’s a Wonderful Life.

    It’s fresh, it’s a little bit timey wimey, and the Doctor is a huge dandy who enjoys eating up the dancefloor in a kilt!

    Just how many times did he change fabulous outfits in that episode?

    Intrigued by all his jewellery and what meanings it might hold.

    And who is the mystery lady neighbour who knows what a TARDIS is? A Time Lady?

    Plus, looks like Fourteen and Donna’s butterfly effect meeting with Isaac Newton is still rippling through earth’s timeline – “mavity” is still go. What else has been altered?

    Merry Christmas all.

    BobbyFatv2 @bobbyfatv2

    Thoroughly enjoyable and lots of mysteries for future untangling.

    @juniperfish agree about the jewellery, there was a lingering shot of the Doctor’s hand on the bannister which seemed deliberate to show off his rings…

    Mrs Flood made me think of River / Pond as did the baby and parent mystery for Ruby but not sure RTD would parallel a Moff storyline so directly. Then again the crack in the wall (well ceiling)!

    Can’t wait for May

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    Lots of fun and a real sense of charm. As Mrs Blenkinsop (and others here) wondered, who is Anita Dobson playing? Or is she RTD breaking the 4th wall and just being cheeky with us?

    Mudlark @mudlark


    who is Anita Dobson playing?

    The name of the character, Mrs Flood, gives no clue as far as I’m aware, but perhaps a former – hitherto unrecorded? – companion of the Doctor on his travels. Or, given the number of times the Doctor has saved London from alien threats, maybe just someone who hasn’t been afflicted by the collective amnesia which seems to afflict the general population on such occasions

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    Ruby and Bill. Both orphans/foundlings. One black and brought up by a white foster mother. One white and brought up by a black foster mother. Coincidence?

    Mrs Flood–my first thought was that she was just a 4th wall device by RTD to end the show with a cute line. But…wasn’t there an RTD episode back with Tennant as the 10th that was about the ice warriors and the flood?

    Sorry, it’s Christmas night, it’s late, and there has been wine…But there is something about the ice warriors and the flood…Or not…

    Robert Caligari @robertcaligari

    As a Catholic, I’ve harbored a private, admittedly irrational fear that 21st century WHO might have it in for my type. (I know RTD is homosexual, in addition to a Richard Dawkins fanboy, and…well, I would understand why he’d have an axe to grind.)

    Imagine my delight upon seeing that wasn’t the case at all. Hell, the Doctor LITERALLY used the church’s spire to spear the head baddie like a vampire!

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    Hmm now also watched the Doctor Who Unleashed episode for this episode, now I know RTD is a prime exponent of the Doctors first rule and really enjoys messing with us fans but he did admit that there is going to be a slow reveal background story to Mrs Flood. If this is indeed a case of RTD messing with us then he appears to have Anita Dobson thoroughly involved in his scheming. I did however fall into the one of the constant fan fav theories and wonder if Mrs Flood is actually going to be revealed as Susan appearing at last……just putting it out there the other thought that occurred was The Rani but surely not. Though personally I think I’ve  read or saw  a YouTube broadcast somewhere that RTD has said he is going to introduce or reintroduce us to a more mythical side, which he’s certainly done in this special. Though I would say in introducing “other science” shall we say he’s still trying to give it a  scientific structure. I’m wondering if the mystical elements will play out as a result of the events of Wild Blue Yonder, oh heck I think I need more sleep.



    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    So I’m as intrigued as anyone about who Mrs Flood is. Theories I’ve seen so far: River (Flood), the Rani (it’s never the Rani like it’s never lupus. Until it is?). The Master. Ruby’s biological mother. Ruby herself. What about The Doctor’s adoptive mother? What about the Doctor’s biological parent when it comes to it?

    But why was she so angry – and with her neighbour at that – about the Tardis originally? I mean in terms of angrily accusing him of putting it there, not the location. I did have to smile slightly at the fact that the Doctor now has ramps in the Tardis – and yet parks it on the pavement. Parking in a way that blocks the pavement is a full, crossed arms tutting offence over my way, and probably for anyone who uses or knows anyone who uses a chair…

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    there were no Tennant era Ice Warrior stories… as I’m sure you know. 1 for Smith/Coleman and 1 for Capaldi/Mackie. ‘After the flood’ was a Toby Whithouse story from the previous Capaldi season…

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    I mean ‘Before the Flood’!

    Kharis @kharis

    The new doctor is fantastic. He felt very “doctory” throughout the episode, well, except for the dancing in the club scene, which somehow felt separate and not the Doctor to me. The Doctor was always reluctant to dance or awkward if he did dance. I could have done without that scene entirely. The Doctor becomes the “Flash” moment was just as out of character as the dancing. That being said, I still appreciated the kilt. The Doctor would absolutely dance in a kilt, just awkwardly at best IMO.

    Mrs. Flood, the big question mark.

    Also, who is Ruby’s mom?  A flood sounds like chaos for the Ponds, including River. The cracks in time always circled around the Ponds, so somehow, this storyline seems to bring us back to the Ponds.

    River is the Doctor’s wife. He has other loves, but she is very different, she is his other half, his soulmate, and is built like the Doctor. River could be Ruby’s mother. If the story was done right, and not “Disneyed” up, then it could be incredible. I’m not sure RTD is up for that amount of depth, that seems more of Moffat’s skill, but maybe? I thought “Turn Left” showed that RTD could do depth, so it’s possible.

    RTD is great at characterization and I appreciated all the new main characters. The *three queens” were adorable.

    I enjoyed the synergy between the Doctor and Ruby. The music was great and really helped the story along. It’s going to be a fun season.




    Mudlark @mudlark

    The Doctor dances, with not a hint of the Drunken Giraffe, he even sings, and – pace @kharis  – this is the Doctor now, enjoying life, freed by the bi-generation from the last traces of PTSD and angst and ‘absolutely’ himself, as he said in his first moments.  So I agree entirely with the seemingly almost universal opinion that Gatwa owns the character in this fifteenth incarnation.

    This was a very digestible Christmas feast, not too heavy but with enough substance to satisfy and enjoy, and the fourteenth Doctor’s invocation of a superstition at the edge of the universe continues to resonate, different laws of physics may apply, and so we have goblins bimbling by in a rickety, time-surfing ship which defies mavity.

    According to Terry Pratchett goblins are not bad, just misunderstood and maligned. RTD evidently disagrees, because his goblins are the traditional sort, mischief working, accident causing, and with a taste for human flesh, especially babies garnished with coincidence. What’s not to like, since all comes right in the end, and with a neat little time loop as a bonus. It seemed entirely appropriate that an ingredient in the almost instant bond which formed between the Doctor and Ruby was the further coincidence that both are adopted foundlings of unknown parentage. I guess that one theme of the coming season is likely to be the Ruby’s search for a resolution of the mystery of her birth, but will RTD venture so far as to investigate the Doctor’s origins pre-Gallifrey?

    Incidentals: The ‘long hot summer’ the Doctor spent with Houdini; 1911 was a famously hot summer if that fits – I must check.  And I nearly laughed aloud at the blink-and-you miss-it moment when one goblin sotto voce corrects the singers pronunciation of  ‘scones’.



    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave


    Thanks for reporting back from Doctor Who Unleashed (which I do not seem to be able to access out here in the colonies). So, RTD has indicated a slow reveal of Mrs Flood? This promises more guess work on our behalf!


    You are, of course, correct. It’s true, there was a lot of…shall we say Christmas cake…yesterday.


    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    WHO has left the flimsy realm of soft sci-fi and entered a whole new gooey and sticky universe. Maybe it’s just a Christmas Bauble Universe (see what I did there?) like a flagship tv show with a seasonal special stuck to it.

    It’s not like that.

    Observation: Lulubelle was the name of a blackface musical in the 1920’s and a related 1940s film (expurgated and whitened up). Also part of Country and western duo. Is that significant? Lulubelle III was name of the cow on the cover of Pink Floyd’s ‘Atom Heart Mother.’ RTD taking up racial politics or Robert Holmes style animal exploration protest. Seriously could be either. But not necessarily.

    So, are we looking at an exploration of the Doctor’s origin prior to Tecteun and The Division, do you think? Have we heard Chibnall response to his ‘friend’ Rusty’s generous support yet?

    I draw your attention to all these foundlings and Ashildr’s three cradles…

    If you remember the Goblin King was not the first antagonist to end up impaled on a spire. The goblin ship was a bit Roger Dean I thought…

    Loved the ‘Musical’ element. Was Bob Dylan a singer or a poet? A song a dance man, he claimed.

    Mrs Flood… odds are on River I suppose. Surely that’s a bit prosaic and obvs for RTD? Susan Foreman… see I always thought she was the woman in The End of Time.

    Surely not the Rani…

    I thought it was very powerful… Chibnall’s derisory exposition given some meaning.



    Mudlark @mudlark


    Mrs Flood.  Definitely not the Rani, it’s *never* the Rani 😉  It’s difficult to see how she could be River either; we’ve seen both her death and what she said was her last meeting with the Doctor before  her death, when he took her to the Singing Towers. She survives digitally, saved in the Library computer, from which she can evidently finagle her way into any other virtual environment – but into a house in a London street which coincidentally happens to be next to where the family of the latest companion of the Doctor lives?  Susan is possible. If she was 15 in 1963, and assuming a normal age progression since then, without any complications caused by time travel, she would now be 75  which would certainly fit, assuming also that she has acquired a London accent since the 1960s, when her speech was drama school RP.  The Master – possibly, if chameleon arched, but I doubt it. Too twinkly. My bet is that RTD is going to blind side us with something out of left field.

    Ashildr’s empty cradles are a red herring, I’m afraid. The infant and child mortality rate in medieval Europe, even without the Black Death, was horrendous, that’s why the general life expectancy at birth then was so low. It’s not that everyone snuffed it promptly at age 35. But now, as usual, I’m starting to be boringly pedantic. Sorry!

    Forget my mention in the post above of the 1911 heatwave in England. Houdini was in the UK a few years before that, but in 1911 he seems to have been on the east coast of the USA, where the summers tend to be hotter in any year.


    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave


    Mrs Flood–not sure how she could be Susan (even if the age gap works) as the Doctor left his granddaughter in a future, devastated, London at the end of “The Dalek Invasion of Earth”. No?

    Like you, I think RTD will surprise us with something entirely different.

    Mudlark @mudlark


    You are, of course correct; Susan is unlikely. But then it’s easy to lose count of how many times London has been devastated or been almost destroyed and recovered in the past/present/future of the whoniverse 😕

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    Robert Holmes… I meant ‘animal exploitation’ of course! How I hate spell check. I only looked up the other Lulubelles because I couldn’t believe it was down to Floyd + Geesin!

    River could be prior to ‘Mel’ in ‘Let’s kill Hitler’… if the Silence and Long Joan Evil Cow had vortex manipulators. Cos it looks like that tech had got everywhere.

    Susan’s last appearance was when she went back to her own time stream with gramps after The Five Doctors… but do we know where? Or if she thereafter got access to time travel tech? She was probably early in her regeneration cycle.

    No. It’s never the Rani. I hope and pray it’s not The Loon… sorry Skeletor… er The Master. The Monk? Or rather Anchoress? The War Baroness? The Corsair?? We got to meet the Corsair sometime. Or another iteration of Tecteun/Awsok?

    Flood. Flow. Flux… urghh. Gonna have to watch it ain’t I? Nooo…

    Ashildr… yeah I’m on my own on this one but…

    1. I think a civilisation with Time Tech would be over human/mire hybrid genetic material like flies, once they knew it was there

    2. Why three? Three is a very curious number. In the Doctor’s terms three is neither an accident nor a coincidence.

    3. Ashildr edited her own memory. She literally tore pages out.


    ’Dunno. I tore the pages out.’

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    Just watched “The Five Doctors” (for the first time). What an abomination.

    Susan. No. She does not somehow appear back in London in the 1970s. That abomination of a show does not demonstrate that she is anywhere but with her lover from “The Dalek  Invasion of  Earth”.

    Sorry, but she is still back in the future London that was devastated by the Daleks.

    As I type this Mrs Blenkinsop is trying to calm me down…



    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    sorry for inflicting The Five Docs on you. Suppose I’ll have to look it again myself.

    It was not a glorious WHO era… the next story ‘Warriors from the Deep’ was supposedly the one that killed classic WHO. Makes you wonder how (a) barnstormer like Androzani could still be made.

    I still maintain that time lords and ladies tend to get around.

    WhoHar @whohar

    Seems like I am going against the grain here but I thought it was awful. Huge plot holes and weak characterisation. Not feeling the love for Ruby from this showing. I did like Cherry though.

    I’m not a fan of the Christmas Specials generally, so will assume this is going to be an outlier….

    Ollie14 @ollie14

    Enjoyed TCORR, despite the cringey goblin singing… love the mystery surrounding the mother in the church yard.

    When the Doctor went back to save Rugby, did time stand still? The person walking away from the church hadn’t made any ground in the time between the Doc arriving and returning to the Tardis. The clock on the church only moved forward one minute as well. Maybe The Doc made multiple visits?

    Ollie14 @ollie14

    Also, does anyone know why the Doctor gazed up at the roof when he returned from saving Davina McCall and said, “maybe I’m the bad luck”

    The crack in the roof looked like it had gone until he went back inside the flat. No glass smashed in the windows either? Poor continuity or something bigger? 🤔

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    Well, I thought that was very good, although again it did feel just in places like RTD was raiding both his own and other showrunners’ greatest hits — not that that’s necessarily a bad thing. The Goblin King impaled on the church spire kinda reminded me of Deep Breath and Ruby Sunday really did remind me of Impossible Girl-era Clara a lot.  And Ncuti was great and has the makings of an iconic Doctor imo (although his costume, while not at the level of atrocity that Jodie was forced to wear, doesn’t strike me as quite Doctor-ey enough but maybe this is just something I have to get over.) But he’s bringing an exuberance that I don’t think we’ve seen in a Doctor before.

    I also enjoyed the lurch into the realms of pure fantasy though and I wouldn’t mind if this continues into Series 1 proper. It’ll make a nice change from the more superficially science-y Whoniverse that imo had become rather small. Just as long as it doesn’t go too Harry Potter.

    Not sure about Mrs Flood but I think she might be a total misdirect. I don’t think it’s the Rani (tho I’m bemused by why on Earth anyone would want the Rani back. She was rubbish, an 80s equivalent to Professor Zaroff imo. I always assumed it was a strategy by the broflakes to head off the threat of a female Master but now that ship’s well and truly sailed, I can’t imagine there’s too many fans that genuinely miss her all that much.) Ditto Susan. As @blenkinsopthebrave says, there’s a major time jump to be taken into account and I’m personally not sure what’s to be gained by bringing her back. The TARDIS comment is foxing me but I wouldn’t be surprised if she ends up just being an indomitable elderly side character a la Wilf. (Unless, of course, she is the series 1 main villain — in which case, she might be Bad Wilf. Arf.)

    But I hope it’s not too controversial to say that I’ve never really found RTD’s Xmas specials all that entertaining and that Moffatt and even Chibs did them a bit better but I’d say that this was one of the better ones.

    And, yes, @blenkinsopthebrave, I agree that The Five Doctors is a highly overrated abomination. There’s a certain guilty pleasure to be had in seeing old faces give it one last turn — Troughton gets one last chance to be great before the godawful Two Doctors. But it gives no explanation for Susan (I’d have liked to have seen her give One a piece of her mind — ‘Listen, you old sod, what was the idea leaving me in that hellhole? Eh? Eh?), it needlessly ruins Borusa and has the kind of DEM resolution that goes unremarked by the same sort of nitwits who used to have Twitter meltdowns on a weekly basis if such things even suggested themselves during the Moffatt years.

    Mudlark @mudlark


    If what I have read is correct, I doubt we need spend time fretting about this Doctor’s costume. It will be like the British weather; if we don’t care much for what he is wearing this week, just wait a while and it will change.

    On another tack, is the name Flood significant? It has reminded me that when I was aged around 11-12, way back in the Palaeolithic era, I had a class mate at school whose surname was Flood. Maybe it’s her – but then again, probably not.  According to Doctor Who Unleashed, and as @devilishrobby has already noted, Mrs Flood does have a part to play in what is coming, but an NDA is in force, so we will have to wait and see.

    As for The Five Doctors, the mention of that episode made me realise that I had never actually seen it, and having looked it up I don’t think I’ll bother, so thanks everybody for saving me from a time better spent on other pursuits.

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u

    The other thing I really really liked was RTD’s deployment of the lampshade.

    ”What are you doing? Do you usually grab rope ladders descending from the sky?” (I may not have that word for word)

    Reality of the situation… quite correct

    Get the Doc to say it… and it has been said. No going back now. Cut!

    He saved the show twice. And he’s getting better.

    But @jimthefish is perfectly correct. Apart from the magnificent VotD and (bits of) The End of Time, RTD’s old Xmas specials could be a bit meh. This one had promise and tied in unanswered questions from late Moff and Chib.

    Juniperfish @juniperfish


    So, are we looking at an exploration of the Doctor’s origin prior to Tecteun and The Division, do you think?

    I think there’s a lot which could be done with this theme, even without the plan being that the Doctor actively goes looking for his origins pre-adoption by Gallifrey, or finds them.

    Gatwa’s Doctor has already been drawn to a fellow foundling, in Ruby, so the psychological ramifications of the Doctor’s sense of themselves as an orphan of unknown descent, are clearly on the table.

    Tecteun was a very malevolent adoptive mother, so perhaps some of the Doctor’s adventures with Ruby will involve situations with cruel parents, or other abandoned or experimented on children, of whatever alien form.

    If Fourteen’s mistake in invoking myth at the edge of the universe (with that salt line) has let the Toymaker back into the universe, perhaps it has had other effects as well. Are we dealing with a branch in the timeline of the universe? So the universe Gatwa’s Doctor now inhabits is one where mythological creatures and figures have become embodied in reality?

    That would explain why goblins are now manifest on earth.

    And it fits with the timeline altering effect of Fifteen and Donna’s encounter with Newton too (a universe where “mavity” not “gravity” now holds the heavens in place).

    The Doctor’s bi-generation itself can be seen as a symbolic bifurcation of reality.

    As for Mrs. Flood,  your suggestion @ps1l0v3y0u about a link to the Capaldi episode Before the Flood, is interesting, because that episode was about a bootstrap paradox. And “mavity” I think will turn out to be a time-altering “butterfly effect”, so I wonder if  “the flood” in Mrs. Flood’s name is an allusion to the time-alteration initiated by Fourteen at the edge of the universe, whereby myths now “flood” into reality.

    Anonymous @

    Felt this was weak. RTD tends to have a pattern in his writing and this followed the familiar pattern that plagued a lot of his episodes – a strong setup, but a very weak, rushed ending.


    The goblins literally vanished, the problems quickly ended and here’s the next shiny thing to distract you with while the credit’s role. On the positive, it seems like RTD does plan to do something with the timeless child – far too many mentions and thematical elements going on not too and the space the flux has left seems to be filling by the toymaker “fantasy” characters.


    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    Someone else made the point that the appearance of the goblins may be related to the line of salt in Wide Blue Yonder… I am reminded of Time Bandits and the heroes’ drift out of history into the realm of fantasy. So… yes the ship disappears. It wasn’t particularly robust was it?

    Was the ending abrupt? When it comes to WHO it’s not just RTD who is guilty. This is the nature of the show. It’s speculative, timey-wimey and you don’t want too many two parters. Moffat had the thing about the ‘big red reset button.’ Might be a bit meta, might be a bit of lampshading but this is not typical of his strongest writing.

    The brilliant ‘Mummy on the Orient Express’ had a strangely truncated explanation at the end. Did they run out of time? Probably. Wouldn’t the business of rescuing everyone have been a bit prosaic? Matthieson and Moffat gave Capaldi a facetious line. Job done

    It should be a fast moving show. Do you really want Jodie and Bradley grinding on about what everything means every week?

    Anonymous @

    @ps1l0v3y0u no, but if they removed some of the flab and put in into the ending Resolution, it would be nice. They’re all guilty of it to some extent, but I find RTD the worst at it. Moffat usually did a better job in that department.

    If I remember correctly, RTD said in the BTS videos that the salt stunt has brought more fantasy creatures to the universe (toymaker was the start).

    janetteB @janetteb

    Well finally got all the recalcitrant cats together, (including the actual feline one) to watch this episode. We have been waiting since Christmas and one or other is either out or asleep or busy..

    It was a lot of fun, not one of the best Christmas Specials but not one of the worst either. Very Labyrinth, which isn’t a bad thing, though not sure I would enjoy that so much in a standard episode. The rules are always a little more relaxed in Christmas Specials.

    There were a few questions, who is Ruby Sunday? when is “mavity” going to be corrected, and who is the neighbour.

    This episode is clearly setting up the series arc.

    Now to go and read the comments above,



    Brewski @brewski

    Hello all.  Been a while, but ready to get bonkers again.

    So this ep.  Overall I enjoyed it, but was not a fan of the whole goblin musical number.  I hope this is just a one-off Christmas Special kind of thing.

    Who is Ruby Sunday’s mom?  Well… River Song DOES have the same initials!  Hmm….

    Mrs. Flood: I don’t think she’s going to be the high-end mystery everyone is hoping for. I think the name is just a way of provoking all kinds of bonkers theories. I don’t think she’s part of the Doctor’s past.   That is, the part we KNOW about.  I think she will turn out to be a pre-Hartnell (actually pre-Dr. Ruth) companion.   Here’s why:

    1. She’s been around the city a long time, knows what a police box is and only identifies it as that when she first sees it.  So human and on Earth (London?) for many years.

    2. She reacts with shock, dropping her shopping bags when she sees it dematerialize.  If she’d recognized it before she shouldn’t have been shocked.

    3. After that her attitude changes dramatically.  She is happy and fairly glowing about what she’s seen.

    4. She encourages Ruby to go ahead, go inside.  Like: You’re in for the adventure of a lifetime.  This is the attitude of someone who has been a companion, once long ago and wants to see someone else have that experience.

    5. She tells us specifically that she knows what a TARDIS is.  But since she didn’t recognize this one right away, she was not familiar with the police box shape.  So a shape BEFORE the police box.

    All this is easily explainable as someone who travelled with the Doctor BEFORE the TARDIS took on it’s iconic shape.  Why the Doctor and not some other Time Lord?  Well who else picks up human companions and takes them on adventures? 🙂


    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave


    Welcome back! Very interesting idea about Mrs Flood. It does answer many of the questions I had about her seemingly contradictory behaviour. But her change of feeling regarding her neighbour from the beginning of the episode to the end still still seems a bit puzzling.

    I tend to agree with you about the goblin musical number. Am willing to accept it was in the tradition of Christmas pantomimes, but still.

    As for who is Ruby’s mum, I keep focussing on the shoes she is wearing as the Doctor looks at her from afar after she leaves Ruby at the church door. Yet I have no idea why I focus on the shoes.


    Brewski @brewski


    Welcome back!

    Thanks!  Looking forward to lots more bonkers theorizing.

    But her change of feeling regarding her neighbour from the beginning of the episode to the end still still seems a bit puzzling.

    I had to go back and re-watch.  You’re right, it is a bit odd.  The only thing I could think of is that seeing the Tardis and remembering her own adventures brightened her whole attitude to everything.  Seems a bit week, so maybe we’ll learn more about what her back story is.

    I’m gonna toss out a bet that we’re going to see her as a young companion to some other, pre-police-box Doctor in a spinoff.  This Doc doesn’t remember her because he doesn’t remember ANY of the pre-Hartnell days.  And she asked the Doctor “Who are you?” So she doesn’t know about regeneration and he doesn’t look like her Doctor.  But also notice that he doesn’t tell her who he is as he normally would.  Otherwise if he’d said, “I’m the Doctor” she would have reacted to that.  She only knows (or assumes) he is some Time Lord.

    As for who is Ruby’s mum, I keep focussing on the shoes she is wearing as the Doctor looks at her from afar after she leaves Ruby at the church door. Yet I have no idea why I focus on the shoes.

    Huh, not sure.  I re-watched that too. I don’t see anything specific about her shoes.  Except… is it me? It almost looks like she doesn’t leave any footprints in the snow.

    Ah well, onward to spring!


    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    … no footprints in the snow…? Legolas? Maybe Galadriel… it was an episode with goblins!

    Or just bad CGI!

    Mrs Flood? Still haven’t given up on River post spacesuit girl, and pre Mel. Maybe Captain Jack rocks up with vortex manipulator and sends her back to Amy’s timeline.

    Clearly the no DNA match for Ruby is a big deal. Elf you reckon? Viking? (I have my own line on this one) Shobogan? Leela??

    Brewski @brewski


    Mrs Flood? Still haven’t given up on River post spacesuit girl, and pre Mel. Maybe Captain Jack rocks up with vortex manipulator and sends her back to Amy’s timeline.

    Alas I fear Cap’n Jack’ll never be back.

    And Mrs. Flood will not be any of the existing Who lore characters.

    But I will go all-out bonkers theorizing now:

    Season 1 of the first spinoff: The Adventures of Doctor Ruth.

    The Doctor and her granddaughter Susan are on the run from The Division from whom the Doctor has recently defected.  They are hiding out on Earth in 1962, with Susan enrolled in the local Coal Hill School as part of their cover.

    Susan’s friend from school (we’ll call her Isolde) has come looking for her.  She stumbles into a small garden shed in back, not realizing it’s an alien space-time machine called a TARDIS which can change its shape.  She finds Doctor Ruth on board. Something happens to cause the machine to dematerialize.

    The two of them go off on a Season of adventures in time and space, ever on the run from Division soldiers.  Isolde has the time of her life!

    During the final two episodes Isolde meets and falls in love with Tristan, who joins the TARDIS team.

    The Doctor finally pilots the TARDIS back to Earth while being pursed and makes a hasty maneuver that causes them to crash land.  The TARDIS manages to materialize in a native form: a police call box.

    Isolde has been knocked unconscious but Triston is able to get her out of the TARDIS and to a place of safety.  The Doctor takes the time to make sure she’ll be all right before taking off on another set of adventures in Season 2.

    When Isolde comes to, Triston proposes to her and when she accepts she asks his full name.  Triston Flood.  And she will be the future Mrs. Flood, who will never forget the extraordinary adventures she had in the magical shape-shifting TARDIS.

    Season 2 ends with Doctor Ruth hiding on 21<sup>st</sup> century Earth as a human where she’d buried the TARDIS.

    Season 3 (the final Season) begins with the newly re-Doctor’d Ruth back in the TARDIS for more adventures.  It ends with her reuniting with Susan in 1963.  Here the Division catches up with her.  They force her to regenerate into Hartnell Doc, erasing his memories and implanting false memories of a life and childhood as this iteration of the Doctor on Gallifrey.  They give him a false memory of having escaped Gallirey in a stolen TARDIS.  They press Susan into going along with this and point out that she’ll have to get used to saying “Grandfather” instead of “Grandmother”.

    By the way, I should point out that in the several years I have contributed to Theories on the board, I have never once gotten one single thing right. 🙂

    VickyMallard @vickymallard

    So I finally managed to watch my first episode with a “new” Doctor that is not Ten/Fourteen. Which was weird, but I liked the character. However I really struggled to click with the storyline and the singing goblings and all that. One reason may have been that I was doing something else while watching it, but I found myself wondering what the whole point of the story was (as it was clear from the beginning that neither Lullubelle nor BabyRuby would be eaten by the goblin king). I liked Mrs Flood and the gloves, and I am slightly confused about the new sonic screwdriver, which seems to have lost all resemblance to any kind of screwdriver I’ve ever come across. ^^

    The other thing that confuses me at the moment is not related to the episode itself but to the current hooha about the companion. As far as I understand, she shot all her episodes for the current season, and next season there will be a new companion, is that right? Which seems not particularly unusual to me, but is this always such a big deal? I mean, we haven’t even seen more than one episode with Ruby?

    ps1l0v3y0u @ps1l0v3y0u


    did you START with Ruby Road?? You need to see the previous 3 too really… I’m sure you are/have…

    the singing… a shock I admit. But I think RTD was channeling the Steven Moffat’s annual raid on popular Xmas culture. Otherwise everything will be fantastic after The Toymaker (which is why you need to watch the others).

    I took a breath… and thought it was fine.

    Most companions only last a season.

    ratings? Do they matter that much once you have s deal? Not saying that aint a poisoned chalice. But really, who are the people chucking bricks? You tube? Ooh 10,000 zombies vs Alexander the Great. Memo to self: stockpile bog rolls.

    The Chibwitch is dead. Hooray.

    VickyMallard @vickymallard

    @ps1l0v3y0u Yes I have seen the previous three episodes – this episode was my start to watching Doctor Who episodes that do not have David Tennant in it 😉 I loved all three of the specials with Fourteen and thought the bigeneration scene was brilliant. So I was quite sure I’d like Ncuti as the Doctor, I was just almost disappointed about the storyline. Not sure what I had expected, though. Well I’ll see what happens next – in May (?!) if I’m not mistaken?Until then, I will continue to catch up with the other Doctors, starting with Nine… so far, so good! 🙂

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    @vickymallard  I wouldn’t base your opinion on a premier of a Doctor in a Xmas Special as the Xmas specials seem to have a hit and miss history. As @ps1/ov3yu has said RTD seemed to be channeling some of the Mof’s campish Xmas style, I would wait for at least a few episodes from the new series as it starts in I think it’s April or May before making any decision on Ncuti’s performance as the Doctor.

    VickyMallard @vickymallard

    @devilishrobby I may have expressed myself a bit unclear – I liked the new Doctor and will certainly see what future episodes bring for him. I certainly didn’t mean to criticze Ncuti’s performance as the Doctor, I’m sure he will be brilliant!
    It was just this particular storyline that did not “click” with me. I didn’t really get the connection between the goblins (which weren’t my cup of tea anyway) and the thing with the coincidences/bad luck/accidents. And what that lady who interviewed Ruby in the beginning (the one who was later hit by the Christmas tree) had to do with it all. But some of it may simply be because I didn’t watch it too closely.

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