Who Review – Flatline
It’s TARDIS time, Evil Geeks! This week finds the Doctor as a prisoner in his own home; thanks to a steadily decreasing in size TARDIS door. Either someone left the TARDIS in the dryer a little too long or something is siphoning off the physical dimensions of the advanced craft causing it to shrink. Clara manages to get out while the blue box is kiddie sized, but the Doctor ends up trapped when it goes down to about 1 foot tall. At the same time all this spatial wackiness is going on, in the town where the TARDIS has landed, people are disappearing only to have an image of themselves pop up on a mural at a memorial for the missing. Could this be related to the TARDIS shrinking? It’s up to Clara, armed with the Doctor’s sonic and psychic paper to figure out what is causing the anomalies.
Clara, Clara, Clara. I speculated last week that I thought Clara was on a path to her own death and this weeks’ episode strongly backs up that theory. Clara is forced to walk a mile in the Doctor’s shoes, which leads her to understand his ways a little more. She starts to understand why the Doctor is so quick to reassure people even when he knows they’re doomed. A person with hope will run faster that a person with no reason to preserve themselves. I was expecting her to come away from the whole event with a deeper understanding of the man she’s been traveling with and while to some extent I think she does, but at the same time she’s also carrying an air of hubris with her at the end of the episode. She did a fine job filling in for the Doctor; managing to devise a way for the TARDIS to recharge and right itself dimensionally speaking, but she’s under the impression that she’s out-Doctored the Doctor. Ok, you racked a point in the win column, no one is going to dispute that. That’s one point though. The Doctor’s built up hundreds of points over his lifetime. He’s had enough experience in his life to justify his devil-may-care attitude towards danger, but Clara is still a relative newbie when it comes to living a life dangling over the precipice of death. He’s seen and accomplished more than we can fathom and while Clara has been his companion for a while now, she’s not anywhere close to being on his level. In the immortal words of Han Solo: “Don’t get cocky, kid.”
Clara also keeps up the sustained lie she began with Danny last week. He still thinks she’s done traveling with the Doctor, but we know that isn’t the case at all. She continues lying to Danny, even as she’s on the phone with him while simultaneously battling the 2 dimensional monster. She seems annoyed anytime he calls her and even ignores his call to her at the end of the episode. It should be noted that when Clara ignores Danny’s call, she is arm-twisting the Doctor into admitting that she did a better job as “The Doctor” then he normally does. The Doctor won’t admit that, not because he’s being a dick to her for no reason, but because he doesn’t want to feed into her inflated sense of self and invincibility. He knows that further blowing up her ego will only lead to her acting increasingly reckless , which could (and probably is going to) lead to tragedy. On top of that, I’m sure the Doctor is well aware that Clara has been lying to him about Danny being OK with her continued time traveling. The Doctor is the smartest man in the universe, he’s not that easy to fool. I’m starting to suspect the reason the Doctor has been so dickish to Clara this season is because he sees the direction she’s headed, so he’s intentionally trying to distance Clara from himself in order to keep her safe. It kind of explains why the Doctor has been coyly auditioning new companions this season. So far he’s taken Courtney from Coal Hill School on a few trips, he outright offered the position to Perkins on the Orient Express, and he seemed to take an interest in the community service kid who’d been helping Clara in this episode. He knows whether he successfully manages to push Clara away or not, either way she’ll be gone. Probably soon.
Finally, I’d like to point out that we finally got a Pandorica Opens type speech from Capaldi this week and MAN was it unbelievable! When he lays down that “I’m the man who fights monsters…” line near the end of the episode, I swear it was the most badass moment of the Capaldi era yet. I’ve been digging the 12th Doctor before that, but that was the scene that cemented my love for this Doctor. That’s all for now, Whovians. See you next week!
Wanna catch up on past trips in the TARDIS? Read On…
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Posted on October 19, 2014, in Features, Geekology, Reviews, TV, Who Review and tagged 12th Doctor, bbc, BBC America, Clara Oswald, Danny Pink, Doctor Who, Flatline, Jenna-Louise Coleman, Peter Capaldi, Sci-Fi, sonic screwdriver, Tardis, The Doctor, Who Review. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.