The beginning of the episode seemed to open a plothole, because even though the student had no family, she had still been sent tot he headmaster by a nurse, and surely would have had classmates who would miss her. It was a poor start to an otherwise sweet and nostalgic episode.

I found this episode very troublesome because of the implications it had for Rose as a companion. I think Rose reacted so snarkily to Sarah Jane Smith because she was projecting her worries onto the former companion. Sarah had aged, while the Doctor did not. In consideration of a romantic relationship, it would be hard for a woman to reconcile herself with the fact that her partner does not grow older in apperance, especially considering the vanity of women today. Also, Sarah was a beloved companion, but she had been left behind — and in the wrong location! — by the Doctor. It made the Doctor look like a player, and naturally, Rose was bothered.

As the fight between the two women escalated, it became more apparent that they viewed themselves as near-girlfriends of the Doctor’s, with lines such as ‘Oh, he’s never mentioned you’ suggesting more than just a platonic relationship. I felt sorry for them, because even though they were bickering over him, it still was apparent that neither really had any ‘right’, in the relationship sense, to him.

However, the Doctor had the perfect answer to this question because, although it sounds bad, it is also difficult on him to witness his friends growing older. If I were in his shoes, I would feel even lonelier because I would have to endure while others pass on. This seems to be a common theme with stories that deal with immortal creatures. Even the hormonal disaster, Twilight, deals with Bella being horrified at the idea of aging while Edward remains young.

I also wondered how I would feel as an abandoned companion. The Doctor’s companions witness so many marvelous things — farflung galaxies, alternate universes, time travel — and the normal world would probably seem very dull and depressing afterward. It would be very hard to cope with the change, like being shown a world of riches and then being denied access to it. It would also be impossible to maintain even a normal job or an ordinary lifestyle afterward.

The presence of K-9 was comforting because it meant that Sarah could still retain a slice of her old adventures. I loved K-9 because it is a machine with tons of personality, such as when K-9 agreed that it was a ‘bad dog’. It helps that its steampunk appearance makes K-9 even more endearing.

Sarah was given the chance to rejoin the Doctor, but she decided to move on and live her own life. This seemed to foreshadow Rose’s fate, especially since the Doctor never maintained a permanent companion. The problem with the Doctor is that we always have to move on — whether as a companion, or as a viewer dealing with a regeneration. Moving on is difficult, but the benefit is that characters like Sarah learn to have a life outside of the Doctor.

 

Advertisements