Doctor Who #869: Time and Space

"Okay kids, this is where it gets complicated."
TECHNICAL SPECS: Both mini-episodes are included as special features on Disc 1 of the Series 6 DVD set. First aired as part of the Comic Relief telethon, in two parts ("Time" and "Space") Mar.18 2011.

IN THIS ONE... The TARDIS lands inside itself, leading to temporal shenanigans.

REVIEW: The two episodes are so short (about 4 minutes each), neither feels like a complete story. In fact, Space ends on a cliffhanger. So better to discuss them together. Now, we've seen a TARDIS inside a TARDIS before (The Time Monster, Logopolis), but never inside ITSELF. Similar Russian doll/Portal tricks nevertheless resulted. Best not look at it too hard. It's just funny business for Comic Relief, playing on space loops and time loops in a clever way, with lots of hand waving. So for example, the exposition and technobabble solutions only exist inside the time loop. Amy simply repeats what she heard herself say, with no one but herself to give her the answers. The Doctor picks the right lever on his console the same way. The information doesn't actually have an original source. Silliness.

Where the mini-episodes fail, to my mind, is in the sex-related humor. It's like Moffat is back to writing Coupling (which I loved, don't get me wrong). I realize he's poured on the innuendo in previous episodes (River Song is an innuendo MACHINE), but here the story is so brief, it's too high a percentage of the content. And the sex jokes are so obvious and in your face, I'm not sure they're appropriate for children of all ages. The TARDIS' accident is a result of Rory looking up Amy's skirt (and let's talk about that for a bit), and as soon as there are two Amys in the same space, we're inevitably drawn to threesome references. It doesn't help that Amy is apparently hot for herself (and she's never looked in a mirror before?). In Amy's sexual orientation on a wide spectrum, or is she just torturing Rory with sex fantasies? Or rather, why am I even made to ask those questions? In a piece of fluff for a comedy show (The Curse of Fatal Death also had lots of sex, for example), it may have seemed fine. As part of the canon, it feels a little sleazy.

- Fun, if brief. I'm just not sure about the tone.


Madeley said...

Okay, timey-wimey: is this event a closed timeloop, because Amy from the future is actually standing there? Yes, in the Whoniverse time can be written on occasion, but sometimes it can't be. If it IS a closed loop, then Amy from the future can only be there if the Doctor DIDN'T choose the wrong option on the console.

Or to put it another way: lots of parallel timelines. In all the other ones, the Doctor chooses randomly, incorrectly. The TARDIS blows up. All of those other timelines collapse and close off, because they can never have existed. The one that's left is the one where the Doctor chose correctly, allowing future Amy to travel back, and know which one was the correct option.

Martin Léger said...

Creepy post of the day; Mmmmmmhh, double Amy.

LiamKav said...

As if one Amy wouldn't be enough? (Seriously, we'd tire out before her).

I once read a comment that put me right off of all these "twins/parallel universe sexy time fun" things... Amy making faces at herself it pretty much the same thing as if she made hot faces at an identical twin, which is the same thing as if she'd made hot faces at her sister.

Because nothing says "sexy" like "incest".

Siskoid said...

Well, you're not your twin, you're yourself, so it's an elaborate masturbator---see, this is why I refused to address it.

Marty: Toé pis Bauble, hein.

Martin Léger said...

J'aime mieux pas avoir Bauble dans le scenario.

Siskoid said...

You're gonna have to fight.

Well... I guess you each get the one.

Well... Not that Amy would have you, you understand.

So... keep it in your dreams.

Also... I won't mention this conversation to Nath.

jdh417 said...

Guilty pleasure. I love Karen, so no surprise I like this. Also, it's reasonably clever in execution. There's only so much you can do to develop a story and characters in a few minutes. It's just fun and flirty.

Andrew Gilbertson said...

I enjoyed this for the space loops and everything; conceptually fun. I tend to give innuendo humor a bit more of a pass when it's within a marriage- but the stuff in the second part (Amy being in love with herself- which I thought was more the Doctor's sarcasm) and Rory with a threesome felt just silly and out-of-character, so I definitely enjoyed pt. 1 more than pt. 2.

Notably, though, Amy seems to want to talk to the Doctor about something without Rory overhearing- which seems to be the first reference to her suspecting pregnancy.

Siskoid said...

The conversation she wants to have may actually be the stuff from Night and the Doctor, about how she remembers various time lines.


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