Something I Felt I Just Had To Rant About

Posted: September 1, 2011 in Uncategorized

A Remake Chronicles Extra by Adam-Troy Castro

The entire Nazi war machine, including tanks and planes and thousands of marching men, is converging on Paris.

The French defenses have failed, and there seems no alternative but a future of tyranny and genocide.

Then, up ahead, standing in the middle of the road like that guy who stopped the tanks at Tianenmen Square, a single unarmed guy. A guy they recognize. He looks up at them and says, “Remember me?”

The Nazis retreat.

Later, from their bunkers, the Nazis point to this moment and tell this one guy, “You know what? You’re as bad as us.”

The guy’s friends say, “Yes. You’re another side of the same coin.”

The guy takes this to heart and says, “Yes, it’s true; I’m as bad as them.”

The Nazis round up entire villages and machine-gun them; they put people in concentration camps; they commit all manner of horrid atrocities. This one guy makes a habit of stopping them, and not just them, but other folks just as bad as them. He saves millions, even billions. He does this not by being more formidable than the Nazis and other war-mongering invading armies of the world; he does this by being smarter by them, by finding the weak spots in their vast and unstoppable war machines and exploiting them in a manner that makes all their dominoes fall. At times, he warns them, “You know I’m good at this; turn around if you want to live.” Sometimes they listen. Sometimes they don’t, and all die, but you can’t say he didn’t warn them.

And yet, when in the most self-serving of rationalizations, they tell him, “You’re as bad as us,” he seems to believe it.

Nobody asked THEM to roll into Paris and kill everybody. That was THEIR idea. But when Mengele whines, “You’re as bad as us,” an argument which is ludicrous on the face of it, he takes them seriously…and so do his friends, his allies, the people whose lives he’s saved, the people whose loved ones he’s saved, the people who have been his friends and the people who have traveled with him. They all seem to think it’s a fair cop, or at least something that needs to be seriously considered. 

“You’re as bad as them.”

Yes, he says, soulfully agreeing. I’m as bad as them.

Nobody raises a hand and says, ummm…excuse me? That’s just plain bullshit. It’s just taken as a given.

This has been a critique of a particularly annoying aspect of DOCTOR WHO.

  1. Martin L. Shoemaker says:

    To be fair: it’s an annoying aspect of the NEW Doctor Who. I don’t recall such existential angst from the Tom Baker days. Not that I was that regular of a viewer then, but I don’t recall this theme then.

    I think this behavior started out as a good idea. In the early episodes of the reboot, it was strongly hinted and then later confirmed that the Doctor had committed genocide against the Daleks to save all of space and time (and also that the Timelords were lost in the same battle). Even though he had no choice, I could understand massive guilt feelings as a result. So when he ran into other, lesser baddies, he would feel the guilt pangs. I don’t recall all the names, but the creatures that tried to impersonate the British government and the ones who hunted him down when he hid as a human in the early 20th century boarding school… Yes, they were evil, and threatened all humanity; but on the scale of the freakin’ Daleks, they were small potatoes. So I can understand why he might hope in vain to find a peaceful resolution.

    But then the Daleks came back. And came back. And came back, squared. And yet even with THEM, or with the Master, he pulls this “Please don’t make me do this” crap? He doesn’t even have a reason to feel guilty any more, since apparently his genocide wasn’t even close to a genocide.

    And so he starts to seem just a bit whiny. And yes, that’s annoying!

  2. […] Something I Felt I Just Had To Rant About […]

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