Rate & Discuss: The Doctor’s Wife

May 14th, 2011
Warning! This article and its comments may contain spoilers...

The Doctor receives a distress signal from an old friend. Could there really be another living Time Lord out there? Hopes raised, he follows the signal to a junkyard planet sitting  a mysterious asteroid in a Bubble universe, populated by a very strange family. As the Doctor investigates, he puts his friends in the gravest danger.

In one of the most anticipated episodes of the new series so far, the Doctor, Amy and Rory faced shocks, scares and Ood – and we were with them for every step of the way!

As the first Doctor Who episode to be penned by acclaimed fantasy and sci-fi writer Neil Gaiman, it was always going to be one to go down in history. Of course, the fact that it’s called ‘The Doctor’s Wife’ adds to the overall intrigue factor, and ever since the title was revealed back in March, our brains have been racing with all kinds of outlandish theories and questions. The answers were finally revealed tonight, along with some surprises…

As well as the mysteries surrounding the beautiful and insane Idris, we were also given an all access pass to the TARDIS, which came hand in hand with its very own array of secrets. Along the way, there were blasts from the past and insights into the future, but was the episode worth all the hype that preceded it? Did it exceed your expectations?

The Doctor’s Wife has been described as “a real love letter” to the fans, but was it a love letter worth reading? Were you left delighted or disappointed? You can let us know what you thought about tonight’s epic adventure in the comments section. Happy discussing!

Rate this episode
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(72 Votes, Average: 4.56/5)
159 comments on this article
  1. Rassilon’s Rod
    May 16th, 2011 at 8.30pm | #1

    @vaguely
    Not as lazy as constantly resurrecting everybody who is supposedly killed during the course of an episode, rather than having the conviction to go through with the idea!

  2. JC
    May 16th, 2011 at 9.23pm | #2

    I still wonder how Idris got stranded on House and who Aunty and Uncle were, unless I missed something. It seems a lot happened in the pre-titles sequence when I was away from the TV

  3. JC
    May 16th, 2011 at 9.32pm | #3

    oh ok, reading a Doctor Who wiki, that makes more sense

  4. shawn
    May 16th, 2011 at 9.39pm | #4

    is aunty and uncle made completely out of dead time lords body parts r just some of them is dose n e of yous no?

  5. e.p
    May 16th, 2011 at 10.08pm | #5

    @shawn
    They’re made up of all sorts of aliens, Time Lords included. I remember Uncle has a gray pointy ear so that was from some other alien

  6. vaguely
    May 16th, 2011 at 10.13pm | #6

    @Rassilon’s Rod
    See my point upthread.

    If Rory survives the season I’ll be shocked. That’s why they keep killing him – so that when it happens the shock will be total. And if it’s Amy or the Doctor (or River) who offs him…

    Either way, treating death as trivial, as a plot device, as cannon fodder to serve the hero, was always the craptastic weakness of TV Sci-Fi and Who was far from immune – something Moff has seemed keen to redress since The Empty Child/ Doctor Dances.

  7. shawn
    May 16th, 2011 at 10.17pm | #7

    @e.p
    thanks i just wasnt sure r not but i im now thanks

  8. Rassilon’s Rod
    May 16th, 2011 at 11.37pm | #8

    @vaguely
    Personally I much prefer the ‘craptastic weakness’ of old, preferable to having very convenient happy endings all the time!

  9. ema
    May 17th, 2011 at 12.02am | #9

    How can you not love Rory. He is adorable! For those who think him dying so much is abit annoying I think it’s like a Peter Cried Wolf scenario. So we get all these oops he is dead, oh no scratch that he’s alive, but then when he really dies we will be all not believing it and be all shocked. I still cry whenever he is “dying”. His reason for the house not killing them is still making me laugh so much. “You shouldn’t kill us straight away cause that’s not much fun, you need fun, I had a PE teacher just like you! If you don’t kill us straight away it’ll keep you entertained” Ahh bless him. I will miss him deeply once he leaves for good. On a show called Fern, Arthur said that some one important will die. So I don’t know if he means the Doctor at the beginning of Ep.1 or whether maybe Rory’s many deaths lol. What do you think?

  10. wdz
    May 17th, 2011 at 10.19am | #10

    Alot of comments about Rory dying and coming back to life. Maybe he is still a droid. At the end of the last series, everything was restored, but Rory was already there as a droid, therefore didnt get made human???

    Could be a reason to Amys YES / NO pregnacy.

  11. shawn
    May 17th, 2011 at 12.08pm | #11

    @ema
    thats the first time ive come across the cry wolf senario its interesting now that uve said it youve give me something to look out for now

  12. Calli Arcale
    May 17th, 2011 at 5.50pm | #12

    @vaguely
    “Either way, treating death as trivial, as a plot device, as cannon fodder to serve the hero, was always the craptastic weakness of TV Sci-Fi and Who was far from immune – something Moff has seemed keen to redress since The Empty Child/ Doctor Dances.”

    I wholeheartedly agree. For me, it was possibly Eccleston’s best moment when, in “The Doctor Dances,” he says, “Everyone lives! Just this once, everyone lives!” He says it with such relief, such unfettered joy….

    I don’t think the body count has any relationship to the quality or enjoyability of a story, though. It’s interesting to see complaints about insufficient violence and death in a story where only the regulars definitely survive, and the people they’d come to rescue are only saved from dying in the story by the revelation that they had already died *before* the story.

    And it’s not like Moffatt himself doesn’t kill anybody off. Consider “Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone” last season — apart from the regulars, everybody in it died, and there was no computerized rescue; Moffatt didn’t even stop with killing them, but actually erased them from history.

    Bottom line: you can’t judge a story by its body count. You have to judge it on its individual merits. A high body count may or may not be appropriate to telling a particular story.

  13. Calli Arcale
    May 17th, 2011 at 6.20pm | #13

    There are some questions people have that Neil Gaiman has answered elsewhere:

    * Why is there an Ood in it?

    – He’d written an original monster, actually, but they were out of budget. It was changed to an Ood largely because they had the costume sitting in Wardrobe, ready to go.

    * Why the 9th/10th Doctor TARDIS console room?

    – They had to get to *a* backup console room in order for the Doctor’s plan to work. Why this one? Well, because Gaiman was commissioned to write his script in 2009, while David Tennant’s last few episodes were being recorded, which meant the set was still up and he had the chance to ask them to pretty please keep it around for a bit. It was a choice of convenience. Otherwise, they would probably have been building yet another set, and they really had no money for that.

    * Did House survive?

    – Apparently, in earlier drafts of the script it was explicit: yes, House survived. In this draft, it’s ambiguous, but I think Gaiman believes House survived. A definitive answer would only come if a sequel to this story is written.

    * Why don’t we get to see the monster?

    – Gaiman said in interviews that he likes unseen monsters — he thinks they’re often scarier because of the imagination being free to fill anything in. Obviously this isn’t a universal opinion, but to be honest, I tend to prefer subtle or even invisible monsters as well over the extremely visual monsters you see in movies like “Aliens”.

    * Why did we only see corridors inside the TARDIS, besides the two console rooms?

    – Budget again. Gaiman had written scenes with other rooms, including a very expensive one in the Zero Room (rebuilt since it was jettisoned in Castrovalva, I guess). But they were completely out of budget by then, and also runtime. The beauty of a corridor set is that you can get a tremendous amount of mileage out of it, by filming it from different angles and having your characters run different directions down it. Part of me wonders why they didn’t opt for the “Invasion of Time” solution and simply film the TARDIS interiors on location (it can look like anything, after all), but maybe even that would’ve been too expensive.

    * “The only water in the forest is the river.”

    – This line was one of the hints dropped in the Brilliant Book, and I seem to recall Gaiman saying at some point (or hinting) that this was the line Moffatt asked him to drop in. Gaiman has staunchly refused any other scripts for the season (he’d rather enjoy them as an audience member and get his gasps at the finished product) so he probably doesn’t know what it means any more than we do, which is rather interesting and exciting.

  14. ema
    May 17th, 2011 at 9.38pm | #14

    @shawn
    I know, I only thought of it after watching ep4. like 4 times! It’s just like every episode he is repeatedly dying. He dies in ep2 and ep3 and now ep4 lol. So I am guessing it’s a cry wolf. I am wondering whether he’ll die again in ep5 :P It would be pointless if nothing comes from his multiple deaths and resurrections.

    Another question for all you whovians to ponder on.. Can Auton people (like what Rory is supposedly meant to be) actually reproduce as they are just plastic brought to life?? Cause like that might rule out Rory as the father of the possible baby?

  15. shawn
    May 17th, 2011 at 9.46pm | #15

    @ema
    they could melt and split to make multiple rorys that r cloned so for ever time rory dies there could be a new rory born so there could be a rory for every time he dies that could come back and save r doom the day this is just a very very very rondom thought lol

  16. ema
    May 17th, 2011 at 9.51pm | #16

    Lol. It’s interesting though cause in some of these eps Rory could of used his auton shooty hand to save them such as when Nephew was advancing? So maybe like “wdz” said maybe Rory is now human since the universe was “reset”.

  17. shawn
    May 17th, 2011 at 9.55pm | #17

    @ema
    thats what i pursumed that he was human when things were reset r he could still be an auton but keeping it secret there r pics of the mid series finale eipisode 7 with rory infront of loads of cybermen and he looks very confident so i dont now he could be keeping a secret of his own but i couldnt possibley say

  18. Calli Arcale
    May 18th, 2011 at 3.34am | #18

    Auton reproduction — well, in the Pertwee eps with Autons, all of them were manufactured at a plastics factory. But they never said exactly how they were made, or ruled out other methods of reproduction.

  19. ema
    May 18th, 2011 at 10.27am | #19

    @Calli Arcale

    Thank you for that! Cause I am a new Who fan and wasn’t alive when the Classics were on air, I didn’t know much about the Autons apart from the first ever episode of Christopher Ecclestone. I knew the Autons had been in the Classics. In the Classics, did they show much about the Time War, it’d be very interesting to watch. :)

  20. shawn
    May 18th, 2011 at 10.30am | #20

    @ema
    i think as for as i no the time war is a new invention that russle t davis created it wasnt in the classics as far as i no

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