, 18 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
“I’m the Doctor. Sorting out fair play throughout the universe.”

It’s taken me until today to realise: this isn’t the heroic statement it appears. It means “applying rules to people”, it’s an attempt to create a status quo.

It’s not a bad thing. Fairness is good. But...
...But “fair play” is relative.

In a show where Space Amazon is allowed to carry on unpunished after mistreating its staff, and where a Trump-alike gets to wander off with a gun after causing deaths through severe criminal negligence, what kind of fairness do we mean?
In this universe, it’s just a clean slate after being naughty, isn’t it?

Okay, space mega-racist, go back to a time without humans and live out your life. Trumpalike and Space Amazon have seen bad things, so get another go at doing what they do.

“Go Be Who you are, try again.”
Narratively, that’s “Go start your story again“.

But crucially, there’s no implication that lessons are learned. You’re not punished karmically or literally. “Fair play” is apparently the choice to do what you like, so long as it’s legal.

Fair play is laws. Rules.
Which...I mean this isn’t the anarchist the Doctor tends to be, is it?

This isn’t a Doctor willing to affect change. Indeed, she seems to actively avoid it. “Locking up a giant spider to suffocate” is fair play, “Shooting a giant spider that kills” is an action, a hard choice.
I keep thinking about each showrunner’s Doctors are unavoidably - in part (and we shouldn’t overstate this) - reflections of the self, the author...
RTD‘s Doctors are bouncing enthusiasts, holding in their sadness, delighting in the new, and absolutely any woman’s gay best mate.

Moffat’s Doctors have brilliant minds which curse them to feel superior and to lie, to not be the good men as they’d like to be..but they’re trying.
Who is Chibnall’s Doctor? She doesn’t stand out front, doesn’t draw attention, seeking to maintain a status quo, playing fair, then backing off.

Isn’t that the show’s voice right now? A show that’s casting progressive, writing conservative? Fair play...but then step back.
I’m desperate not to overstate autobiographical aspects, since writers aren’t simply writing What They Would Do, and write from widely more than their own worldview and experience.
Here’s a thing, too: I’m not sure I’m drawn to the work of writers whose goal is the continuance of a status quo, who likes rules.
Reapply the endings! Send the spiders off to a new place to live! Send the Trumpalike to a time where his money and status won’t help! Leave the space racist alone and without resources in a black neighbourhood! 😉
This has made me realise that the way the Time Lords are is actually a bit drawn from Hartnell...
Don’t @ me (my inability to love Trek hurts me far more than you) but...maybe? Doing good within parameters that feel don’t-rock-the-boaty, anti-extreme, nothing too heroic. Via a conservative book of ethics.

I guess I don’t dig that in my Doctor Who.
Referee might be the *perfect* way of looking at this.
HELLO new followers! ❤️

Since Doctor Who almost certainly brought you here, my Tweetnotes on series 11 (and 5 to 10 for that matter) are all on my @medium page.

As a taster, here’s the entry for the Dalek episode Resolution:
Thanks for asking! There’s one in the Resolution thread, but here it is: ko-fi.com/ellardent

Oh, yes, this is a *fantastic* comparison.
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