World, meet your master. Donna Noble. We finally meet my favorite companion, Donna Noble:


Almost directly after the Doctor bids a tearful goodbye to his (one true) love, Rose Tyler, he meets Donna Noble dressed for her wedding. She’s enraged, demanding to know how she got to the Tardis and who the Doctor is. The immediate, puzzling situation he finds himself in allows no time for the Doctor to grieve properly for Rose.

They zip back to the Earth, to England, because Donna is about to get married and she cannot be late. Unlike Rose, Donna is an older woman, probably used to getting what she wants. She is, therefore, blunt, insistent (persistent), and pushy. She’s also loud, somewhat crass, and she does not enjoy jokes. She doesn’t laugh in the episode, a direct contrast with Rose who is often featured smiling or laughing with the Doctor.

Donna Noble’s character is an important part in the Doctor’s development and growth because she provides a point of reference for the Doctor. When she meets him, she pushes and challenges him. Her attitude and personality, while completely entertaining, also takes a while to get used to, a luxury the Doctor is without.

In the episode The Runaway Bride, the audience likewise suffers a change of pace and is forced to contrast Rose against Donna. For me, I liked Donna almost immediately. Her brand of snark seems beneficial and productive for the Doctor. Unlike Rose, who almost always ends up waiting for the Doctor to explain the larger picture, Donna actively attempts to put things together. She tries to find out what’s wrong, she’s right there with the Doctor, pointing things out, nitpicking, trying to figure things out. Her brand of curiosity is different, geared more towards learning other than merely observing. Rose, on the other hand, seems content to recognize elements of past narratives without being able to put things together, herself.

Another difference between Donna and Rose is the nature of their relationship with the Doctor. Despite meeting him on the day that she realizes her husband-to-be is interested in her only in the service of a large, monstrous, alien spider, Donna harbors no special, romantic feelings for the Doctor. Audiences – at least, this audience member – get the vibe that the Doctor is not her type. She’s looking for someone like her, someone who wants to settle down and be with her – despite how difficult that seems to be. The Doctor is not her type, at all. With Rose, however, it’s obvious that she’s looking for a superhero figure – and she got him.

Another point of contention was Rose and Donna’s similarities. The Doctor offers both of them a chance to whizz across the universe. Rose agrees with no second thoughts. On the other hand, Rona is more aware of what she’s leaving behind, what she’s going to give up for the Doctor. At this point, I remember wondering if there were other companions who gave up their chance with the Doctor. Rose is younger – and the Doctor symbolized, for her, a life that she could live. For Donna, the Doctor is exactly the life she didn’t want to acknowledge.
She’s so fierce, she exists as a Simpson:

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