also, about the doctor specifically: i feel that people tend to forget that the doctor’s worst never came from a COLD place. on the contrary, the doctor’s worst came from caring TOO MUCH, from being so able to empathize with aliens and humans and every living thing that made him want to save and…
Heh. I saw a very old forum post about the Waters of Mars yesterday that summed up my feelings about that episode very succinctly. Paraphrased:
Adelaide: Doctor, please help us!
Doctor: I can’t.
Adelaide: Doctor, you’ve got to help us!
Doctor: I’m sorry, Adelaide, I can’t.
Adelaide: Doctor, for God’s sake, help us!
Doctor: OK! OK! I won the Time War! I can save anybody I want!
Adelaide: Doctor, you saved us! HOW DARE YOU, YOU MONSTER!!!!! (Shoots self.)
Doctor: Goes insane.
People may praise Waters of Mars to the skies, but it’s got some HUGE plot holes in it, not the least of which to me is the idea that the death of Adelaide Brooke is of more cosmic importance than:
1. The genocide of ALL the Time Lords - and the restoring of same
2. Deposing Harriet Jones
3. Every genocide that has ever been performed against any species by any manifestation of the Doctor in any era. (And there’s a LOT of them.)
et. cetera. Also, there’s one line in the Waters of Mars that has a really simple answer.
Adelaide condemns Ten because he talks about saving “the little people”, but nobody as important as Adelaide before. How dare he say that? Because… Adelaide’s death is a Fixed Point in Time and the deaths of other people aren’t? He didn’t make that determination! That was decided for him, and he spent the whole episode fighting it!
I am not so much trying to defend Ten’s actions as explain why I think the entire premise of the episode was flawed. He’s condemned for stating aloud the comparative importance of individual people, as demanded by the circumstances of the present conflict, and he’s condemned for saving Adelaide after being repeatedly begged to do so BY ADELAIDE.
The inference is also that he must not travel without companions, but I suspect that if ANY of Ten’s three main companions had been there, any one of the them would have been urging him to save the Mars colony. It just doesn’t hold up to scrutiny all that well.