Last Saturday’s episode of the hit sci fi fantasy ‘Doctor Who’ dealt with dying and where we go after. It was the first part of a double climax that has been teased for several months. Throwaway characters have been dying all season and finding themselves in “heaven,” greeted by a mysterious woman named Missy. Her existence and actual location have been highly speculated on since. It’s truly the culmination of a storyline that had to have been written well before every other episode. That is literally “Writing 101;” know your ending first. However, the themes of death and beyond didn’t go over well with many viewers who felt the show’s reveals inappropriate. That sort of thing you can never know in advance. Hit the jump to continue if you don’t mind SPOILERS about the episode ‘Dark Water.’
Clara Oswald is turning out to be my favorite Who companion. Her relationship with coworker Danny Pink has her rethinking travels with the Doctor and settling down for a normal life. One day, Danny’s strolling down the street having a very confusing cell phone conversation with Clara, when he lets a car blindside him into smithereens. He’s a very smart man and former soldier with sweet residual fighting skills, yet something as doofy as negligent street-walking kills the dude off. He ends up in the afterlife with Missy, and Clara wants the Doctor to reverse time to save Danny. Instead, they use the T.A.R.D.I.S. to find him. That’s when things get strange.
When the doctorly duo encounter Missy, she and her ally Doctor Chang divulge some interesting revelations about the afterlife and death’s ongoing impact on…well, the dead. Among these crazy ideas are a body’s continued consciousness after dying, and the pain of extreme rituals such as cremation. This pissed off lots of viewers who voiced their complaints to the BBC network. The BBC then responded back, basically telling everybody to shut up.
“Doctor Who is a family drama with a long tradition of tackling some of the more fundamental questions about life and death. We were mindful of the themes explored in ‘Dark Water’ and are confident that they are appropriate in the context of the heightened sci-fi world of the show.”
Translation: We know what we’re doing, chill out.
“The scene in which a character reveals 3W’s unconventional theory about the afterlife was preceded by the same character warning the Doctor and Clara several times that what they were about to hear could be distressing. When the Doctor does hear these claims, he immediately pours scorn on them, dismissing them out of hand as a ‘con’ and a ‘racket’.”
Translation: It was right there in the story! The Doctor said the claims were false! Did you not hear the lines??
“It transpires that he is correct, and the entire concept is revealed to be a scam perpetrated by Missy.”
Translation: OMG stop trying to be mad about everything and use your hypersensitive heads for once! Drama queens…
See, this “afterlife” is actually the Nethersphere. Google is our friend:
“In several episodes, a character who has died awakens in a place called the Nethersphere, which is referred by numerous names that include “heaven”, the “afterlife”, and the “promised land”. Robotic beings attempt to reach this location during ‘Deep Breath’ and ‘Robot of Sherwood,’ though unknown why at the present. The deceased are usually greeted by a mysterious woman named Missy.
However, the events of Dark Water reveal the Nethersphere is a product of Time Lord technology that uploads the minds of the recently deceased, regardless of the time and place. The Doctor and Clara discover it’s housed in a facility called 3W, located in St Paul’s cathedral; corpses were also being collected for conversion into Cybermen. Missy is also revealed to be short for “the Mistress” – the Master’s first female incarnation; the villain somehow avoided being sealed along with Gallifrey during ‘The End of Time/The Day of the Doctor’ and regenerated.”
The sad truth is that there are people on this planet that are never happy unless they’re brewing trouble. Most of them can be found in various comments sections of any public posting venue. Others go through life being overly sensitive to everything and sometimes you can’t even say hello to them without their taking offense. And then there are the champions of a cause. When you even come close to voicing an opinion on said clause (like that of some religious fanatics), they go ballistic. Toss those three groups in some soup, sprinkle in a few other assholes, and you’ve got the BBC having to deal with a bunch of bullshit.
Right off the bat you know the story about the afterlife was untrue because they used the ship to locate Danny. You can’t fly a space/time vehicle to heaven or hell. In theory, maybe, because that’s where dimensional travel comes in. But it stands to reason that the real afterlife is off limits, otherwise Time Lords could just bring people back from the dead all willy nilly. And that’s just stupid. And another thing, if you’re watching a show about a guy who has been “resurrecting” himself on TV for 50 years, you need to already be laid back about the death stuff.
This story proposed a delicate topic designed to spark some dialogue and advance the plot. That’s entertainment. Then, they debunked the idea as being some evil scheme masterminded by the wretched Missy. That’s covering your ass so as not to offend anyone with your delicate topic. All the jerks I mentioned above always gloss over the “covering your ass” part and hear/see what they choose no matter what’s right in front of them. And the BBC handled it swimmingly. I’ll drink to them tonight!
Via – the BBC