Pop Between Realities, Home in Time for Tea 84 (Call the Midwife, Supernatural)

(32 comments)


Jill Buratto is a nurse specializing in end of life issues, a general badass, and my wife.
In case you missed the boom, Call the Midwife is a BBC period drama about a group of midwives servicing London’s East End in the 1950s, originally based on the memoirs of Jennifer Worth. It is the newest big show to hit UK television with ratings roughly matching those of Sherlock and Downton Abbey and surpassing Doctor Who itself. Call the Midwife was also featured in 2013’s Comedy Relief sketch (partnering with Doctor Who in this endeavor) and has Paul McGann’s brother, Stephen McGann as a prominent character in their series. UK TV ends up being a bit incestuous. 


Medical shows are a hard sell to those who work in the medical field. Much in the same way those in the tech field often cannot help but point out the inconsistencies and illogical moments when tech appears in TV or cinema, those of us in the medical field see the problems others can safely ignore. Even “reality” medical shows fall afoul of this issue, I remember yelling at a Mystery Diagnosis episode that “there is dumbing the facts down for the laypeople and then there is outright lying to them!”

But this is a problem that Call the Midwife sidesteps so well. Because the medicine is very rarely, if ever, the focus of the episode. With the emphasis shifted, they only have to include as many medical facts as they see fit. We never get a long and convoluted explanation of what is going on or why things are stressful, we get just enough to see the broad shapes of the situation and are led to conclusions about the situation by the players reactions to it. They stay vague enough to avoid getting things significantly wrong (though I feel I should disclaim all this by mentioning I am very much NOT a maternity nurse, there may be errors I do not pick up on). This era is also just out of step enough with the present that, unless there are glaring “no, that cannot possibly make sense if they’ve got brains in their heads,” I may not necessarily notice the errors. These are all things I appreciate enormously. It is so nice to be able to watch a medical show without the nurse brain picking apart every little detail.

So what’s the focus of Call the Midwife if it’s not the medicine? Well, it’s the people of course. And not in the schmaltzy, soapy Grey’s Anatomy sense. It’s what I adore about Call the Midwife, it’s the key to how they do convey how stressful situations are. It’s never the stress of watching numbers trend down or hearing alarms blaring, it is watching the people who are in the trenches give each other knowing and mildly terrified looks, gritting their teeth and getting through it. It is watching these women get their patients and each other through heart-wrenching, soul-crushing and nightmare-inducing situations. It is about them going home and getting on with their lives after.

And here we get to what, to my mind, makes this show so good. This is a show about a group of women who walk into people’s homes and see the most intimate parts of their lives. It is about walking into strangers’ lives and seeing the absolute best and worst of them. It is about being pulled intimately into the worlds of others and watching them face incredible challenges, about watching some soar with grace and dignity while others are crushed, made small and petty. It is about caring for each and every one of them regardless of their challenges and reactions to them. And it is about having a life beyond the nearly all-consuming task of caring for the people around them.

That’s one of the clever things about having the midwives quarters in Nonnatus House, in having them live where they work. Because any nurse will tell you, one of the hardest parts of our job is leaving work at work. We are terrible at self care, both in attending to our own health and it ensuring that we have lives beyond our work. Having the midwives live at Nonnatus House gives them an insulated little microcosm in which they always have people who can relate to them (hey, hey, an easy in to the storytelling) but also makes it demonstrably harder to have a life outside of the work. It keeps the women mired in the work which, again, helps the storyteller. It is why Chummy needed to get her own home when she had her own family and why Jenny’s departure from Nonnatus House coincides with her departure from the story.

And, let me be clear, that is what nursing is like. Sometimes it takes a physical departure or a tangible break from a situation or unit or hospital before you can leave a situation behind. And sometimes even that doesn’t work. The lives of strangers become more important to you than your own self-care. If we are not careful, it becomes toxic. Call the Midwife is about women who do it well. And this is what I love about this show. It discusses the torment and joy of being a nurse in a very real sense. I love the science, I love the medicine, but that’s not what nursing is about. It is about the people we care for, it is about making horrible situations, if not good, at least better.

And you can never escape the grip of your job. Just yesterday, I had a conversation I wished I’d never have to have with someone I know and one I know I will have over and over again. My upstairs neighbor, one of the sweetest people I have ever met, has recurrent colon cancer. She had to tap out after three out of five months of chemo because she just couldn’t do it anymore and any oncologist will tell you stopping treatment early is no longer a curative gameplan. I went up to see her and give her a hug before work. She accepted it then quickly ushered me away saying “you have to go get ready to help people like me.” I still want to cry. Of course, I told her if she needed anything at all she could call me. I never wanted to be her nurse. I never wanted to be the nurse for my family members or friends. But I will over and over again. Because, Nonnatus House or no, nursing becomes your world. For better or for worse, your life becomes entirely about the people around you.

Which brings us to Rory. Because this is the tradition and the lifestyle that gave rise to Rory Williams, the last centurion. Like anyone else who has slogged through the best and the worst of people, Rory’s identity as a nurse informs everything he does. His work on a coma ward, watching over his patients and waiting for signs of life, made him uniquely prepared to watch over the Pandorica and wait for nearly two millennia for his wife to emerge.

It isn’t until Rory guards the Pandorica that he embraces his role as nurse to the Doctor’s… well, doctor. Prior to becoming “the last centurion,” he is still unsure, still hesitant, still the third wheel to Amy and the Doctor. Amy’s Choice, in which Rory’s “dream” of becoming a doctor, must necessarily come before his role as a nurse is solidified. The episode-long dick-measuring contest only make sense if Rory and the Doctor are measured on the same scale. We see moments of Rory-as-nurse, small instances, caring for Mack in Hungry Earth/Cold Blood, pointing out that the Doctor is calling back the bad things in The Eleventh Hour. He is the novice nurse, learning the ropes, figuring out his place in the scene.

And then we get to the Big Bang and we see Rory as nurse, as the sort of nurse described above. One who will, to the detriment of his own health and safety and well-being, will ensure the health and safety and well-being of people around him. He’s not just being human here, he is being the caregiver. Without the convenience of Nonnatus House to frame the terse story of caring, we instead have the Pandorica. 

And, the fact is, the Doctor needs a nurse. Someone who hears the grand, sweeping statements and proclamations and thinks about the practicalities and the people involved. He needs someone who is patient and caring and kind. He needs someone who complains “it is always my turn” when ensuring people adjust to the bizarre reality that is the TARDIS and yet does it every time. He needs someone who will grit his teeth, do what needs to be done and get through it. It’s little wonder that Rory is the one in the Impossible Astronaut who gives voice to what has to happen next. It is the job of doctors to make grand statements, it is the job of nurses to keep reality in sight, for better or worse.

Because without a nurse, without a caregiver, we have the sort of Doctor who is okay with removing the autonomy of others. See how Donna’s story ended. The Doctor, in Journey’s End, essentially ignores a DNR/DNI order. That is the reality of what happened with Donna. The very point of the Doctor/Donna metacrisis is that she knows. She understands everything. She understands what is happening to her and why it is happening and, with that full knowledge, makes a choice. But the Doctor’s choices  completely wipe any autonomy from Donna in determining her own quality of life. It is a type of violation that I have come to think of, in my own practice, as medical rape.

One of the most striking things about my reaction to the scene is how frightfully typical of doctors this is. There is still this attitude among a lot of the MDs that every death is a failure. So they push. They spin. They present information in ways that give them the opportunity to try again. They make people feel guilty for wanting to forgo treatment and remain comfortable for as long as possible. It is the role of nurses to ensure that the patients’ voices and wishes are heard.

That’s what this comes down to. It was Donna’s mind and her choice. She knew, she understood what it meant to continue on with the Human/Time Lord Biological Metacrisis and the DoctorDonna. She felt her quality of life was better, that she was better having done the things she had while traveling with him and was unwilling to lose all of that. Even if it meant her mind burning. But that would have been a failure for the Doctor. The first proper companion death since Adric. And he couldn’t stand for that. It wasn’t that she didn’t understand what she was doing, she did. She absolutely understood everything. That was the point. He just couldn’t standby and let her make that choice so he took it from her. Forced her to live a life that she considered less fulfilling. Indefinitely. With no memory of what she could have had. Which I suppose is a small mercy, at least she didn’t live in misery and regret. 

The Doctor made this decision about him, as all doctors do. (And worse, Davies let him, never offering any sort of criticism or question that the Doctor might have erred.) About what he could accomplish, about who he could save, about how much loss he could handle. It should never have been about him. There was another, more important player in this decision whose voice was silenced through selfishness. It was a voice which may have been heard through the intervention of a nurse. 

There is a reason that the Doctor chose his name. He wants to help, he wants to heal but he so often forgets that the people he wants to help and heal have opinions and thoughts of their own. He is the Doctor, Time Lord from Gallifrey, why would anyone doubt his judgement? Why would anyone doubt the judgement of someone with a medical degree? Because it is their life and their choice. That is what a nurse does for you. That is what Rory does. After dreaming of being a doctor, the worst thing Rory can imagine is turning into the Doctor.

Which is such a dramatic change from Rory’s “dream” of being a doctor in Amy’s Choice. Because Rory has worked with doctors, he has worked in a hospital, he knows that acting like a doctor is remarkably similar to acting like the Doctor. And, of course he dreamed of being a doctor. No boy growing up dreams of being a nurse. That’s for girls, for people preparing to be mothers, for the natural caregivers. The men need to make the big decisions so the women can carry out their orders. 

In this regard, it’s worth looking at another show that floats around Doctor Who’s general orbit, Supernatural - a show that, perhaps improbably and counter-intuitively, has often been paired with Doctor Who and Sherlock in a meta-fandom known as “Superwholock.” I started watching Supernatural when it was wrapping the first season and I loved it. I reveled in what appeared to be reversal of the male gaze paired with mythic storytelling that I loved. And while the show does have some cheeky, clever and subversive moments and themes regarding gender, it is so preoccupied with reaffirming the masculinity of the cast that a consist subtext is the chanting of “no-homo” (notably, it is profoundly fucked up that the response is “no-homo” and not “no-incest”). Though, in this, viewers have promptly ignored despite the reiterations of both cast and crew.

And there are clever subversions of “typical” masculinity. We have the hyper-masculine man’s man, Dean who is overwhelmingly the emotional brother. Time after time, we get close ups of Dean wiping away manly tears. Despite Sam being the “nerdy” brother, it is again Dean who, time after time, drops references to Star Trek, Star Wars or other canonically “nerdy” interests. And then we have Crowley who “regains” his emotions only when he becomes less demonic. The show literally demonizes typical masculinity.

But it it the same show that flat out denies that most of its fan base is female. We see this in the season 5 episode “The Real Ghostbusters” which parodies a real life Supernatural convention in which the attending fan base comprised of a large number of typically geeky, neckbeardy men with a few (one, in this case) rabid female fans who were explicitly fans of shipping. Despite this nod to the real fandom, the episode ignores the fact that the majority of actual viewers are female.

It is a show that ruthlessly queerbaits a significant portion of its fan base. Lines from the series include (between Dean and the male-protrayed angel Castiel) “Cas, not for nothing, but the last time someone looked at me like that…I got laid” and “Dean and I do share a more profound bond.” Despite the clear queerbaiting, this is a divisive issue among the fans of the show, causing outright alienation from the fandom for some and the cast, Jensen Ackles in particular, is uncomfortable enough with this train of thought to actively shut down questions from fans regarding possible relationships.

It is a show that frequently and ruthlessly shoves its female characters into refrigerators. The final two episodes of season 8 were an extended FridgeFest, most of the surviving females (few enough as it was) were picked off one by one. The express intent of this FridgeFest was to convince the brothers to agree to a deal as all of the people they have ever saved are killed. The survivors of this cull included the token saved female (Sheriff Jodi Mills), Felicia Day and Meg, the demon. Who died the next episode. 

The appeal, for me, what the mythos but also that masculinity with a twist. As the show progresses, while I still enjoy watching it, I am becoming more and more aware of the problematic beats that undermine the good bits. That masculinity with a twist is exactly what is so well represented with Rory. A masculinity that is markedly not in line with a doctor’s role of barking orders, insensitive comments and callous decisions. 

Instead, the masculinity presented by Rory is actually very in line with the attitude behind Call the Midwife. You do what you do because you have to, you take care of the people around you because they are your responsibility as much as you are theirs. The hallmark of the masculinity Rory represents can be found in The Girl Who Waited. While the Doctor’s instinct (again, so doctorish) is to withhold information to lead Amy and Rory to a conclusion, Rory’s inclination is to give her all of the information he has so that she can make an educated and thought out decision about her life. And he is going to support her in any way. The sort of masculinity we see in Rory is so informed by his history as a nurse in that his goal is always to support those around him to be the best they can be. Always. 

It is in subtle contrast to the type of masculinity seen in the Doctor (which is, again, masculinity with a twist). In contrast to what we see in shows like Supernatural, in which the immediate male reaction to situations is violence to protect others (which is occasionally interrogated in Supernatural, I will give them that credit), the Doctor’s immediate reaction is to figure out what the hell is going on and make bad decisions so that others don’t have to. Sometimes, he reacts to new things with wonder and hope like in Kill the Moon or even in the early stages of Flatline. But sometimes terrible decisions need to be made and, in order to protect those he cares for (and the Doctor does care so much) he makes those decisions for them. Which can be an immensely problematic attitude, as we see in the case of Donna. 

In the end, this caretaking is the pinnacle of masculinity in Moffat’s Doctor Who. Look at Danny Pink. Danny Pink who doesn’t particularly like that his girlfriend runs off to have adventures in space and time with a man who regularly pushes her to her limits. Danny Pink who, despite his qualms, only asks Clara to be honest and open with him. Danny Pink who, even upon finding out that Clara has been lying to him for weeks about traveling with the Doctor doesn't shout or get angry or expect an immediate answer, he gives her time and space to think, simply asking for an honest answer. Danny Pink who is curious, bewildered and enchanted by a situation still remembers that his curiosity is not the priority, those around him are. Danny Pink who recognizes that there are wonders here.

And of course, this is not Moffat’s first foray into examining the concept of masculinity, who has been interrogating traditional masculinity ever since the character of Spike back in Press Gang, most obviously in his withering portrayal of himself in Joking Apart, the first of many brilliant but unthinkingly cruel men he would write. Nor is this a new train for Doctor Who whose challenge of stereotypical male roles is part of what made it so attractive to gay men. The typical “male” aggression has little place in exploring the universe, one needs to be thoughtful and curious and kind. It is this slightly twisted masculinity that is vaulted by Doctor Who.

TLDR: If you want a real man, get a nurse.

Comments

Melissa Robertson 2 years, 7 months ago

Wow. That was a pleasure to read. Thanks for summing up why I like Rory and Danny so much.

Continuing the theme that the Doctor needs a nurse, Clara certainly seems to fill that role, especially in the beginning of her time as companion. She was a nanny in The Snowman, as one example. However, as Clara becomes more Doctor-like, a theme which has been running through season 8, she also seems to be loosing some of those nurse-like qualities. Contrast her in Rings of Akhatan and in In the Forest of the Night. In Rings of Akhatan, her focus is mainly on Merry and her safety. She noticed a scared child and chased after her to comfort her. In In the Forest of the Night, however, she looses one of the children, often seems more interested in finding out what's going on than protecting the children, and generally leaves the role of nurse to Danny, who fills it well. She still has these nurse-like qualities, but they are diminishing.

This makes me concerned for her fate. All I can think is: Pride comes before a fall.

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SK 2 years, 7 months ago

The Doctor is not a medical doctor. Lister joke notwithstanding.

Now can we get on and finish this thing?

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Daibhid C 2 years, 7 months ago

The Doctor is not a medical doctor, apart from having a medical degree, and the fact that, whenever the origins of his chosen name are mentioned, it's always described in terms of healing and making people better.

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Aylwin 2 years, 7 months ago

He didn't spend 60 years at Time Lord medical school to be called "The Mister", thank you very much.

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Aylwin 2 years, 7 months ago

Thinking about it, "Mister" is just a slightly slipped version of "Master", and of course surgeons insist on being called "Mr". Ah-HA! That's why they're arch-nemeses!

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Aylwin 2 years, 7 months ago

Great post, by the way.

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Philip Sandifer 2 years, 7 months ago

The doctor/nurse parallelism between the Doctor and Rory is explicit and deliberate, so the suggestion that there's no substance to this is rather farcical.

Beyond that, I'm uncertain why you're so eager for the blog to end.

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Monicker 2 years, 7 months ago

"Danny Pink who, even upon finding out that Clara has been lying to him for weeks about traveling with the Doctor does shout or get angry or expect an immediate answer"

I think that that should read "does not shout" or "doesn't shout".

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John 2 years, 7 months ago

The nature of the Doctor's doctorate has been inconsistently described. Sometimes he says he's not a medical doctor, other times that he's a doctor of everything. But I'd say that at least from Pertwee onwards, the Doctor has been treated as effectively (among many other things) a medical doctor.

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Jarl 2 years, 7 months ago

Intestinal parasites sounds like a medical degree to me. Also, basketweaving, and temporal rocketry(?). And, given how he keeps getting called to act as an attorney, maybe of Law too (which would, by lore, actually make him a valeyard, in addition to being the Valeyard?)

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Alex Antonijevic 2 years, 7 months ago

I'm not eager for this blog to end, but there's been a few times I've come here hoping to see the next episode entry (which I have to assume is Pandorica/Big Bang) and there's another post instead.

Still, these have been some good essays, so I don't mind.

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Alan 2 years, 7 months ago

In "The Ark In Space," Four said rather definitively that his doctorate was honorary and that he had no particular medical training. Then again, he was still quite young at the time, and most of his successors could have found time to get a medical degree. Eleven did age over 300 years between "The God Complex" and "The Wedding of River Song." Surely he didn't spend all that time blogging.

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jane 2 years, 7 months ago

Cheese-making. He's a Doctor of Cheese.

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jane 2 years, 7 months ago

Absolutely. A compelling look into caregiving, through the lens of TV shows, and with a sideways stare at Doctor Who as well (loved that bit of "narrative substitution" btw).

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elvwood 2 years, 7 months ago

Thanks for that - my wife Alison is a midwife, also a casual fan of Call the Midwife (though she read the book version first) and Supernatural, while my daughter writes Superwholock fanfic - so you couldn't have picked a better topic for the female half of the family! I'll give it to them to read after they get home on Sunday night.

Alison gets really frustrated at One Born Every Minute, and annoyed at the Leeds hospital where it is filmed (and where she trained), because it gives such a distorted picture of life as a midwife. It's as much a reflection of reality as any other reality TV, in fact.

(Those of you outside Britain may not know that the Royal College of Midwives went on strike for the first time recently. Alison was quoted in this Guardian article.)

Thank you for pointing out the contrast between nurses and doctors, and the relevance of this to the show. Rory becoming a doctor in Amy's Choice always felt a bit "off" to me, because they are such different professions. I'm a bit sensitive to any hint of the attitude that "nurses are just doctors who couldn't make it" which crops up occasionally in the media - my mum was a great nurse who would have made a lousy doctor, and had to deal with some great doctors who would have made lousy nurses. Now my wife's in a similar position.

Not that long ago Alison was involved in a birth where a particular intervention could have saved the child, but the parents took the (fully informed) decision not to agree because it clashed with their beliefs. Everyone was upset at the tragedy of the child's death, and some of the staff felt like there should have been a way of overruling that decision. Others - Alison included - disagreed. I wasn't there and don't know the details (such as whether the groups split along doctor/nurse/midwife lines), but it feels like the sort of difference in outlook you are talking about here.

Starting to lose concentration - anyway, good post, thanks again!

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sleepyscholar 2 years, 7 months ago

My connection with childbirth is simply that of having been present at one, and yet even I get annoyed by the routine portrayal on TV of childbirth as a pretty speedy activity. My son's birth was normal, but spent literally hours rubbing my wife's back, and wishing I could do more. Then you see shows like Doc Martin in which a woman pops out a baby in a spare few moments out on an open hillside...

Call The Midwife didn't always draw attention to the duration, but it seemed nevertheless to be a bit more accurate to observer myself and former participant my wife.

Added to which, it manages to combine its unashamed sentimentality with a fairly unblinking portrayal of the harshness of life in poverty.

I felt the better for having watched it, and I feel the better for having read Jill's reflections on it.

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Pen Name Pending 2 years, 7 months ago

This is so far the only slightly-in-depth critical thing I've read about Supernatural, and as such it's practically my introduction. I don't know. It still sounds like an X-Files knockoff for teens to me, except it lacks the best part of The X-Files: Scully. (But of course, I'm probably in the minority as a straight young woman who is more interested in inspiring female characters instead of the eye candy).

Danny really is fantastic, except he has is own hatedom already based on some first impressions. Apparently he's still trying to control her even though he pretty much gave her the opportunity to break up with him at the end of "In the Forest of the Night." Clearly they've been set up to have differences and conflicts of interest, but abusive? It baffles me. Especially since Danny (and Rory too) is really not the male love interest typically seen in media.

Anyway, I really enjoyed reading this; Jill's voice is great.

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SK 2 years, 7 months ago

It's over seven months since The Eleventh Hour; that's longer than the seventies.

The nineteen-seventies.

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Philip Sandifer 2 years, 7 months ago

And?

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Jarl 2 years, 7 months ago

Well, the seventies were situated between the Long Sixties and the Long Eighties, they barely had time to be themselves.

I actually don't know what we're talking about.

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Daru 2 years, 7 months ago

What a wonderful essay, thanks Jill! This piece is right up there with the greats of the Eruditorum for me - I was genuinely surprised when you started discussing Rory and the idea of the Doctor and their relationship between the two roles. Brilliant.

And when I am reading something such as the blog or a book that absorbs me, I genuinely don't want it to end. I'm not sitting here wondering why this is dragging on, I am utterly absorbed, and I don't understand why anyone else who was also enjoying Phil and his companion's writing would want it to stop.

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unnoun 2 years, 6 months ago

The seventies didn't have Torchwood, the Sarah Jane Adventures, or Sherlock to deal with. Which, side-note, should maybe get their own tag given that they're going to be in a book with each other and not with the Tennant, Smith or Capaldi essays.

...And it seemed like the blog spent over a year in the Nineties.

It seems to me like the side-essays are like half the point to the blog. The Pop Between Realities are probably more important than the episode essays. There's no real point to this project without them, in my opinion anyway.

I mean, I've certainly learned a lot. It's hard to argue that the shows in question aren't relevant culturally.

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unnoun 2 years, 6 months ago

I think this is one of if not the best posts in, I'm going to go ahead and say the entire Eruditorum.

...I want more of this. Can you guys do like some more stuff like this for future books?

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BerserkRL 2 years, 6 months ago

Intestinal parasites sounds like a medical degree to me.

Excellent! Why spend four years in medical school when you can get the equivalent in a few minutes via one unsanitary meal?

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Adam Riggio 2 years, 6 months ago

Oh, SK, you're such a delightful troll.

TARDIS Eruditorum isn't just a project with a specific endpoint to finish ASAP. It's a material creative series of essays and books that have, in a literal sense, made Phil's second career. It's a wonderful piece of interpretive artistry that I think is a trail-blazer not just in Doctor Who criticism, but in progressing the form and audience of media studies beyond the disciplinary academic context. When TARDIS Eruditorum finishes, I'll feel like there's something missing from my own life; it's been a regular part of my morning routines and thinking processes for over three years now. I'll miss it profoundly, and encourage any attempt to drag the project out as long as possible.

Also, the longer TARDIS Eruditorum runs, the more opportunities it will have to grow Phil's fanbase and the audience for his books. So roll on.

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SK 2 years, 6 months ago

The seventies didn't have Torchwood, the Sarah Jane Adventures, or Sherlock to deal with.

Oh yes. Those months of nobody-cares that eventually got to the point where you could pay money to get them over with faster.

At least they're all over with now.

...And it seemed like the blog spent over a year in the Nineties.

Seven months and four days.

But there was a lot of Doctor Who in the nineties. Eighty thousand words, once (or twice if you count Missing Adventures, which I don't, but some do) a month.

Bit more than the thirty-three episodes from The Eleventh Hour to here.

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Philip Sandifer 2 years, 6 months ago

This is increasingly reminding me of that old joke where the person complains how much they hate a restaurant: "the food is terrible. And the portions are so small!"

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SK 2 years, 6 months ago

Oh, it's not your fault. It was interesting in the sixties, when it was turning a fresh pair of eyes on stories that had previously been kind of critically ossified, it got less interesting in the eighties when it basically started to go along with the consensus, and since it reached the new series it's been just another website writing about new Doctor Who and the Lord knows there are enough of them.

It's my own mental defect that is the problem, the one that makes me incapable of stopping something I've started until it's finished. It's just that every time that finishing line, the one that means I can finally disengage, seems to be coming up on this website, it gets pulled further and further away.

But that's my weakness, my problem. Ignore me. The end will come, eventually.

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Spoilers Below 2 years, 6 months ago

That seems like an invitation to keep the blog going forever, if you ask me. ;p

Shall I get that guest entry "Pop Between Realities, Home in Time for Tea: Virginia Woolf" ready? Because we can't really discuss The Snowmen without discussing every single BBC Dickens adaptation, and thus of course Dicken's novels, and therefore Woolf's objections to Dickens, and her support and enthusiasm for early science fiction, would will lead into articles about the Bloomsbury group, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, the JFK Assassination, the films of Oliver Stone, David Icke, conspiracy culture in the 2000s, The Office, Parks and Recreation, onwards and outwards...

(I have no intent of actually doing this)

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Whittso 2 years, 6 months ago

Spoilers below You're cruel for raising the prospect and the dashing our collective hopes. That set of diversions sounds fab.

Great essay Jill btw.

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Daru 2 years, 6 months ago

Wonderful essay Jill!

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5tephe 2 years, 6 months ago

I know we've already moved on, but I wanted to come back and thank you Jill, for saying so well a hell of a lot of what I've felt and known about Doctor Who, Rory, doctors and nurses.

The Doctor's comment about Rory's desire to be a doctor in Amy's Choice always really rankled me, too.

But then, you and I were always going to agree on a lot of this.

- Stephen Brewer (Bachelor of Nursing).

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