‘Doctor Who’ iTunes Giveaway: Favorite ‘Asylum of the Daleks’ Quote

BBC America is holding a contest asking viewers about their favorite Asylum of the Daleks quote and why (link here if you’re interested).  seeing as that episode is pretty much the only reason I still have hope for the show, I felt like I had to enter, but I couldn’t pick just one and I ended up writing kind of a lot about my two favorites, so I decided to share my thoughts here too:

My first choice was when Amy tells Rory, “don’t you dare talk to me about waiting outside a box, because that is nothing, Rory, NOTHING compared to giving you up.” I for one spent a long time feeling like Amy and Rory were just Rose and Mickey all over again. After all, Amy spent a lot of the fifth season running away from marrying him, and when we first met him she introduced him as a friend. He’s done so much for her over the seasons, it was great to finally see a demonstration of how devoted she is to him (could’ve used some more showing, not telling, but at this point I’ll take whatever’s on offer), and brought closure to that aspect of their character arcs. I also like how it foreshadows Angels in Manhattan and speaks to a theme running through the recent episodes, of the Doctor having the give up Amy and Rory to allow them to truly live their lives. It drove home how difficult that would be and how much it’s an expression of his love for them.

My second, and the one I ended up using in my entry, is, “I am Oswin Oswald. I fought the Daleks and I am human. Remember me…Run! Run, you clever boy. And remember.” This line sums up the whole episode, and so much of Doctor Who in general, to me. As I see it, the episode is about what it means to be human versus a dalek. For the first time we see humans that are daleks internally; we learn that being a dalek is a state of mind, a way of thinking and feeling, and not just being physically part of a certain species. Oswin might physically be a dalek, but mentally and emotionally she’s still human: she still loves her mother, she’s still capable of kindness, humor, and most importantly the kind of nobility that leads her to sacrifice herself for Amy, Rory, and the Doctor.

In regards to the show as a whole, so much of what the Doctor does, especially the eleventh, involves memory and bearing witness. As the last Time Lord, he alone keeps the memory of his people alive. He remembers his time with Donna even though she can’t and The Year That Never Was when almost no one else does. We saw in the fifth season that being forgotten in the whoniverse means ceasing to exist, figuratively and even literally, and that this is a fate worse than death. Conversely, remembering can be an act of creation that can even give life, as it does when Amy remembers the Doctor at her wedding.  Memory is powerful: we even see this demonstrated in this very episode, when Oswin makes the daleks forget about the Doctor.  So by remembering her the Doctor honors the heart and spirit that kept Oswin human; he keeps a part of her, the best, most human part, alive.  Then of course there’s the reference to running, which needs no explanation.

So there you have it.  Knock on wood and cross your fingers for me, if you don’t mind, unless of course you feel like entering yourself.  I think they’re going to have a different prize every week up until the Christmas special, so it’s definitely worth giving it a go.

Ladies to Love

Thanks to this essay (read it, it’s hilarious), I found myself watching Teen Wolf  in the wee hours of this morning.  I’m only sort of embarrassed to admit that because even though it was pretty much what you’d expect from MTV (melodramatic music, twinks with disturbingly few facial expressions, lots of bare skin), there was one serious bright spot: her name is Holland Roden, she’s a 25-year-old TV actress, and I’m nursing a serious crush.  I mean, just look at her:

Not only is she an (okay, allegedly) natural redhead, but the girl is rocking some seriously sexy curves.  She’s smart too: she first came to L.A. to study molecular biology at UCLA but, be still my heart, graduated with a major in women’s studies.  I’ve checked out some of her interviews and she seems like an intelligent, thoughtful, and genuinely grounded individual.  As with any Hollywood/celebrity culture output, I try to take them with a grain of salt, but regardless, I love that someone is putting out messages like these (I was going to post some quotes from that one, but realized I would end up quoting the entire thing, so I’ll leave it for people to read on their own and just say I strongly encourage you to do so).

I like her character too.  She may be “the popular girl” dating the lacrosse captain, but she’s great at science and math, and my introduction to her was a conversation in which she reminded a friend to have safe sex.  In and out of character, she seems like my kind of woman.

Ratings in David Tennant “oh yes”s: show 2/5, lady 5/5

Something That Makes Me Smile

A Beginner’s Guide to Sherlock Fandom

Here that, Supernatural and Teen Wolf and Inception and Thor and Suits and now Skyfall and…?  This is why I avoid you on the internet. And even though I enjoyed you, X-Men and The Avengers? It’s getting a little boring.

Rating in David Tennant “oh yes”s: 4/5

Homeland: I’ll be Watching You

I know this is really, really belated, given that the episode in question has already aired, but I think this trailer is just brilliant.  The choice of music is just exquisite: the lyrics, the way it builds.  It’s a perfect expression of the show itself, Carrie and Brody in particular, but all of it really.  I haven’t watched the season premier yet, but now I can’t wait another moment.

Rating in David Tennant “oh yes”s: 5/5

Shameless in a Bad Way

I like the US adaptation of Shameless.  I really do.  I dare say I like it even more than the original, UK version (except for Steve: Justin Chambers is fine, but James McAvoy was perfect).  I’m happy it’s recently returned for a 2nd season and I have high hopes for its future.  I like capable, long-suffering Fiona with her barely-hidden vulnerability.  I like ‘Lip with his perfect SAT scores, dry sense of humor, and creativity criminality.  I like Ian with his adulterous Muslim boyfriend, sweet face, military aspirations, and hard-on for the neighborhood delinquent.  I love Debbie, who is somehow both depressingly old for her age and achingly young.  I like Kevin and Veronica, especially Kevin, and want them to be my next-door neighbors.  I don’t really like Frank, that’s pretty much impossible to do, but I find him extremely accurate and enjoyable in a laugh-so-you-don’t-cry, did-he-really-just-do-that kind of way.  The plot-lines are generally fun and sometimes clever and almost always heartfelt.

There’s just one thing that bothers me, and unfortunately, it bothers me a lot.  I’d like to know who decided that Sheila, an otherwise sweet lady dressed like a 50’s housewife who’s good with kids and imprisoned by anxiety, should also be a rapist? And that her cynical, sarcastic, over-sexualized adolescent daughter should be one too? I know it was supposed to be funny when the former handcuffed Frank to her bed  and did kinky things to him despite his loud and unmistakable protests. When the later videotaped herself having sex with him while he was drugged nearly to the point of unconsciousness, but not so out of it that he didn’t object repeatedly.  To state the obvious, it wasn’t.  What it was was the epitome of a trend I just don’t understand, in which men being raped is a punchline.

It’s not just that these jokes are in extremely poor taste and irredeemably offensive; I also honestly don’t get where the humor is supposed to come from.  Is it the role reversal?  The perceived-humiliation of a man being sexually overpowered by a woman?  The supposed impossibility of the scenario? The mere concept of a sexually aggressive woman?  The unexpectedness, that shock of the unanticipated, two things that don’t belong together (women as sexual predators? Men as victims? Men who don’t want sex? Women who do?).  In a world where the rape of men and boys is hardly confined to the realms of fiction, this kind of humor is a mystery to me, and not one I can easily set aside while I enjoy the rest of the show.  So Shameless writers, take note:  Frank screaming “stop” and being ignored isn’t just unfunny, though it certainly is that;  it’s also downright nauseating.  Lose it or lose me.