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An Observation - The Titfield Thunderbolt
Heisenberg might have stayed here
An Observation
I've just been watching tonight's Doctor Who repeats and someting interesting cropped up by joining Turn Left together with The Stolen Earth. I haven't been reading any of the reams of stuff that are doubtless turning up on the Net, so maybe this is Old News, but I have been talking to kharin and uitlander and in particular.

There's been some discussion about whether Donna might turn out to be a Time Lord (and yes, on a third watching/listening I agree there could be a second heartbeat while Donna is in the Shadow Proclamation), specifically Romana - with that ring perhaps being the female ornamental equivalent to the watch used by the Doctor and the Master in the previous season. One thing kharin likes to point out with this theory is the symmetry between Richard Dawkins appearing in The Stolen Earth and a potential appearance of Lalla Ward somehow in Journey's End.

But what really triggered another thought is the Doctor's reference to Donna's Grandfather at the end of Turn Left. There's a lot of pointers in The Stolen Earth to The Dalek Invasion of Earth. I wonder, therefore, whether Donna could be Susan. Of course, this relies on classic Who knowledge, and is therefore almost certainly beyond the scope of RTD's writing. Therefore, the backup to this idea is that Donna will turn out to be Jenny. Which I find much less satisfying, but would tie up that loose end from earlier in the season (assuming Jenny's future doesn't lie in a spin-off series to replace Torchwood).

None of which has the slightest bearing on the fate of the Doctor or Harriet Jones. But I have to take my hat off to RTD for engineering so much effort in our speculation.

And what of the Brigadier? Well, he must be so long retired by now, he should be bee-keeping in the true Conan Doyle tradition. But if the bees have gone ...


6 comments or Leave a comment
uitlander From: uitlander Date: July 4th, 2008 09:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
As the PVR missed Turn Left while I was away, this was my first opportunity for a detailed re-watch. I know most other people have probably already noticed these things, but...

Rose is far too technically knowledgeable about time travel and the science underlying it. For a while I wondered if Rose *was* the Doctor in an alternate time line, particularly as she refused to give her name (it would have meant nothing to Donna in that time line after all) - but that seemed unlikely due to some of the dialogue at the end. But something is odd about Rose, beyond the whole 'hey she's from a parallel universe' thing.

Rose is tracking Donna, not the Doctor, and its mentioned in passing that since her birth Rose has had a second, distinct signal which is what they've latched onto. The doctor does comment at the end of Turn Left that there are too many co-incidences - something is pushing them together.

And the ring, well you know my views on that I've been going on about it since clocking it every early in the season. There has been such an effort to keep it out of main shots and only visible in passing glances; it seems too subtle to be a red herring, I'm pretty sure it will be significant and as you say, the female equivalent of the watch seems a good interpretation.

Of course, if Donna is a Time Lord then so are mum and Wilf. I'm still not sure about the second heartbeat, but I did think I caught a hint of it on this viewing.

I'm not sure you can take Dawkins appearance last week as a cue that Lalla Ward will appear (much as I'd love her to). If nothing else he can go home at night and say 'nyer-nyer-nyer, I've done that too now *and* I'm a Professor.'

clanwilliam suggested last night that the doctor might regenerate into Tom Baker (current, portly variant) and I suggested that that version of the doctor might go of to the alternate universe to live unhappily ever after with Rose - but that's just my sick sense of humour.

I find the absence of a 'big name' billed for the next episode intriguing. RTD just can't resist piling the goodies on, and this is his swansong. Consequently I've talked myself into the fact that we're in for another 'big surprise' - and the two extra companions we know will be in tomorrow's episode just don't cut it.

Oh, and have this as a handy compare and contrast:

Edited at 2008-07-04 09:40 pm (UTC)
qatsi From: qatsi Date: July 5th, 2008 10:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Interesting. Still, it's pretty worthless as a piece of real estate - particularly the way property prices are going at the moment.
brixtonbrood From: brixtonbrood Date: July 4th, 2008 10:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
The Brig was last seen in Peru I think, from the throw away comment in the Sontaran episodes, which implied to me that he wasn't yet retired.

Surely Donna's grandfather is just Bernard Cribbins? or am I missing something.
qatsi From: qatsi Date: July 5th, 2008 10:48 am (UTC) (Link)
I just think there's a resonance with the significance of Wilf's character and the way Susan always called the First Doctor "Grandfather". It's parhaps a bit far-out, but I wonder whether Donna's family (and perhaps Wilf in particular) might be "companions" who have more-or-less forgotten their past.

Edited at 2008-07-05 10:48 am (UTC)
From: rosaguestlist Date: July 5th, 2008 08:36 am (UTC) (Link)
Hmmm, I'm not convinced. For me the main import of Turn Left is that RTD is still thinking about endings that just erase the timeline and start again - so a conclusion of Donna travelling back to change the end of the time war and return with the Time Lords is still my bet.

- K
qatsi From: qatsi Date: July 5th, 2008 10:49 am (UTC) (Link)
Yes, RTD can usually be relied on to go for the least interesting outcome.
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