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tardis AND capaldi deep breath

Reaction to “Deep Breath” in the Who-verse

Attention: If you have yet to see Doctor Who’s episode “Deep Breath” please be aware the following article contains episode spoilers.

 

In addition to the introduction of what promises to be a stellar version of The Doctor, played by Peter Capaldi, there were a few scenes in the most recent episode of Doctor Who that lit up the interwebs and forums. While some of the speculation makes sense, other parts do not seem to be as big of a deal to me. Regardless, Deep Breath garnered media attention, from reviews to specific scenes like these:

“Clara, I’m not your boyfriend”

There has been some negativity in the Who-verse over this line. Some fans using it as an attack on fans who they believe only appreciate The Doctor for his good looks and boyfriend-esque personality. The scene takes place in the TARDIS where The Doctor says, “Clara, I’m not your boyfriend.” She quickly replied, “I never thought you were” and he points out “I never said it was your mistake.” To me, if the theory goes that Clara is the audience and The Doctor is the writer, there is no attack on any type of fan girls or boys at all. It is the acknowledgement that perhaps Moffat had written episodes that were too “boyfriend-y” and it would be changed. He claims full responsibility – “I never said it was your mistake,” in other words, it was my own. Not only do I not see this as a victory line against people who may have been attracted to other incarnations, I do not see this as a condemnation of wanting less flirting either. I see it as Moffat saying, “I am changing this character, you’ve gotten used to him being one way, and that is my own fault.” More of a mia culpa than a reflection on either side of the debate.



“I traded my watch for it”

People are debating whether or not The Doctor actually traded anything for the coat, or took it by force in a manic rage, and what watch it may be. Surprisingly, the two that seem to pop up most often amongst speculators are the pocket watch from “Human Nature” with David Tennant’s Doctor (at the end of which, he gives that watch away to Tim Latimer, so we can probably rule this one out anyway), and the wrist watch that, in real life, Matt Smith who wore it as The Doctor gave to Peter Capaldi as a symbolic “passing of the torch.” I don’t know whether or not that is the watch that is being referred to. What I do know, is I am shocked that I haven’t read anywhere about the possibility of it being the gold pocket watch Matt Smith wears in “The Snowmen” when he meets Clara. We do not know if the watch had any significance, or if it ever held his (or any Time Lord) consciousness, as in “Human Nature” or “Utopia”, but we do know that this Doctor has a “different relationship with time” as Capaldi explained in the Doctor Who “Deep Breath” pre show.

An Exchange of Oxygen
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mirror deep breath

Doctor Who’s “Deep Breath” Delivers a Strong Start to Series 8

This article contains a full plot synopsis, review, and critique. If you have not seen the episode “Deep Breath” please do not continue if you are avoiding spoilers!!!!!

 

“Deep Breath” was a breath of fresh air for Doctor Who fans. Our first full introduction to Peter Capaldi taking on the iconic role of the Doctor was, well, fantastic.

This season’s new title sequence is focused more on time and less on space than the opening has ever been, and was created by a fan, so I enjoyed it. Murray Gold’s more steam punk version of the theme is a little off putting for my tastes, but it stands out as more edgy and intense than previous versions, which is probably a reflection of the new incarnation of The Doctor. When we look back, it will likely seem perfect for its time when all is said and done; especially with Peter Capaldi alluding to his Doctor having a unique relationship with time in the preshow of “Deep Breath.”

From the beginning, we are introduced to the great visual of a dinosaur stomping down the River Thames, spitting out our beloved TARDIS. While this occurs, we see that the Paternoster Gang has established itself in Victorian London, working with the police, allowing for the return of Vastra, Jenny, and Strax (played by Neve McIntosh, Catrin Stewart, and Dan Starkey respectively). Vastra in particular is shown to take charge and be the liaison between strange events and the Victorian police force, instructing them what to do and how to do it when the dinosaur arrives.

When The Doctor walks out of his box, and starts naming the Seven Dwarves to Strax, it is hilarious. It slowly degrades to demonstrate how confused The Doctor truly is, not even knowing who Clara (Jenna Louise Coleman) is and confused as to how he got there. While he is able to speak dinosaur, the TARDIS does not translate for the companions as it generally does, whether this is a reflection of his confusion or the TARDIS giving Clara a hard time, we do not know, but it was very reminiscent of the Sycorax not speaking English until David Tennant fully awakes and emerges figuring out who he is in the process in “The Christmas Invasion” (2005).

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