Six Smart Women Discussing Doctor Who

VerityEpisode98Series 9 has come to a close with quite a bang. Join Deb, Erika, Katrina, and Lynne as we break down Clara’s end, the Doctor’s homecoming, gender-flipped regenerations, elegant storytelling, season-ending spectacle, and much more. There’s a healthy amount of squee and flail, but not everyone is in hyper-happy mode, so it’s a more balanced podcast than you might expect.

How did you feel about the final installment of S9? Was it everything you’d hoped for and more? Did it leave you wanting? Did it just confuse you? Let us know in the comments!

^E

Also covered:

Bonus links:
Philippines Pantene commercial
“Not like other girls” trope

Download or listen now (runtime 1:22:39) 

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Comments on: "Ep 98 – Hell Bent out of Shape" (36)

  1. Katrina D from Oz said:

    I loved this episode. This season has seen a jump in story sophistication. I think they’ve realised the high calibre of Mr Capaldi’s acting skills and are given us the gold quality stories.

    The regeneration amused me, as a woman who would prefer to NOT see a female Doctor. Did all the “we want a male to female regeneration” notice that the story pointed out that it works both ways? NExpecting to see a Male Romana or a Male Rani soon…

  2. Jim O'Brien said:

    Great podcast. I loved this episode, though not quite as much as “Heaven Sent.” I agree with Deb that I would have liked to have more “closure” closure in regards to the Clara storyline. But hey, at least they didn’t backtrack and marry her off to Brian Blessed a la Peri! I concur with Lynne and her husband that this may have been my favorite season of Who across the board. Always so hard to choose, but definitely my favorite season since the show was revamped!

    • Jim O'Brien said:

      One thing I forgot to mention––like Deb, I wasn’t too jazzed when the Doctor gunned down the General at first––but figure the billions of years he spent in the confessional dial could easily have frazzled his nerves and made him a bit bloodthirsty.

      • Paul A. said:

        Yes. I think that’s *meant* to make the viewer uneasy: it’s a sign that the Doctor’s reaction to Clara’s death is taking him off the rails.

  3. Another fascinating podcast ladies. Wow! this one really got to you didn’t it?

    I’m also of the opinion that the Doctor and Clara are lying to each other at the end. He knows who she is and she knows he knows. It just makes it so beautifully cyclic that this series ends exactly like the last one, with them both lying to each other…

    Rule one – the Doctor lies and Clara has graduated to Doctor now too. I could just watch that scene where Clara opens the TARDIS door where Ashildr/Me is waiting at the classic Hartnell style console over and over again.

    As for the question of Orson Pink? Clara has a TARDIS now! She’ll have plenty of opportunity to visit Danny before he dies. Do you really think she won’t? (though what the implications or practicalities of having children are when you don’t have a heartbeat Moffat only knows!)

    I hope you won’t mind me posting a link to my new blog ‘Deriving Me Backwards’ on here. I’ve opened it with an overview of series 9 and intend to write a lot more on Doctor Who. Give it a read if you have time. I’d be interested in any feedback or comments you or fellow Verity listeners might have.

    http://antonbinder.blogspot.co.uk/

    Meanwhile thanks for Verity. it and Radio Free Skaro are the only podcasts that I consider ‘must listens’.

    • That is a very clever way to deal with the Orson Pink conundrum. Hey, Clara could break into the extraction booth and extract Danny as well! Then they go off and find a way to get their pulses racing.

    • I don’t much care for the idea of Clara having a baby while one heart beat away from death and traveling wildly in her TARDIS. Cant we just hand wave off the Orson Pink thing as timelines change?

      • Neil Ottenstein said:

        Moffat was quoted in DWM and in this URL http://www.doctorwhotv.co.uk/moffat-on-orson-pink-mystery-69591.htm “… the obvious one is that Orson comes from another branch of the family … but I’m not saying it’s right. Nothing is actual till it’s in the show.”

      • I was just reading the script of Hell Bent and there is dialogue there that says that Clara’s physical processes have been “time looped”. Let’s hope it was a good day for her, I’d hate to have cramps looping for all time.

  4. Neil Ottenstein said:

    As I mentioned during the comments for Face the Raven, I did not like that ending for Clara. I much prefer this one (and the possibility of a spin-off or Big Finish series). I am still a bit disturbed that she really does need to return to that death, but I feel better now.

    Regarding Moffat not really killing anyone – there were plenty of disturbing deaths this season (remember Before the Flood and The Zygon Invasion).

  5. Erika: you talked early in the episode about how much you were affected by Clara’s death, and needing something to soothe your heart. I don’t know whether or not this will help, but here’s a thought I had.

    You mentioned the idea that her death is still looming over her (specifically) still being problematic for you emotionally, but I think it’s a really good thing (hear me out). Since she and Ashildr/Me are taking “the long way” back to Gallifrey, now Clara gets to experience immortality *on her own terms*. She can knock about the universe for as long as she likes, until she is ready to have that last heartbeat. Then, when she is tired of living—when she *wants* to face the raven—she can go back and experience it as a relief.

    I hope that sits a little better in your heart. 🙂

  6. Katrina D from Oz said:

    A thought re Orson Pink – is he perhaps the descendant of Danny and Lady Me?

    I can imagine them bumping into Dany before he really knew Clara, Me having a child and they raise him on their Tardis.

  7. Sophia said:

    Re: Orson Pink, Moffat said in one of his DWM Q&A’s that he’s probably from another branch of Danny’s family–hence the line in Listen about him being late for the date due to “family business.”
    https://m.reddit.com/r/gallifrey/comments/2oyqrk/steven_moffat_qa_for_dwm_481_the_impossible_scene/?ref=search_posts

    Moffat’s DWM Q&A’s are generally pretty awesome: they are both informative and entertaining because he clearly doesn’t take anything too seriously. The best one is probably when Russell T. Davies actually wrote in to establish the continuity of Ten and Queen Elizabeth actually having sex.
    https://m.reddit.com/r/gallifrey/comments/2uvqy1/production_notes_steven_moffat_qa_for_doctor_who/?ref=search_posts

  8. Ooh, a male Romana! I want to see that. I did love this episode, though I do wish I had seen “Feed the Raven,” “Heaven Sent,” and “Hell Bent” all at once rather than having the pain of Clara’s death spread out over three weeks. When somebody kills off the companion, I feel like . . . well, like punching a diamond mountain into a thousand pieces . . . Clara is now in-between-finite, just like pi. Off to see eternity in a flying diner, with a companion who is either very wise or infinitely devious. I like that.

    These two episodes had a lot to think about. Here are two blog posts I wrote, one about the use of ambiguity and the other about “Heaven Sent” as a metaphor for the Doctor’s life.

    http://kristinking.org/2015/12/07/ambiguity-in-doctor-who-hell-bent/

    http://kristinking.org/2015/12/09/visions-of-eternity-in-doctor-who-heaven-sent/

    I’m looking forward to listening to this podcast!

  9. Jesse Morris said:

    The Time Lords and their TARDIS-sized egos

    Saw the DW S9 Finale Part 2 “Hell Bent” the other night, and unlike the Verities, I’m kinda peeved. More than just a little bit, in fact.

    Not over Clara or the Doctor’s actions or anything, though I have a thought on one in just a moment, as something the group mentioned in their latest podcast. It was great to see all of that play out and of course the ending totally fits both Clara and Ashildr Me (although their stolen TARDIS looking like a diner looks more than a tad ridiculous, but I had to smile). I totally agree with whoever suggested the head canon of their simultaneously seducing Jane Austen, but that’s because I’m a male pig. But no, that whole part isn’t really my problem.

    Deb said it best: Rassilon is a tool. I’d like to suggest that he is more AND less than that. He ticked me off in “The End of Time,” and he ticked me off here, too. In fact, I’m almost convinced that RTD wrote a Time War into the Doctor’s history just so he wouldn’t have to deal with Gallifrey and its goon squad of wearers of ugly hats and absurd neck pieces, because he knew how they were likely to act towards the Doctor. After this one episode alone, quite frankly, I’ve had my fill of these tyrannical morons for quite some time. Aside from picking up neat little bits of intrinsic alien lore and history from the Doctor’s home planet, the entire affair became a pain in the (sonic deletion) to watch. And I’ll lay out my case now.

    First of all, Rassilon ends up having to give the Doctor a whole new regeneration cycle
    thanks in no small part to all of his incarnations saving his world from a (sonic deletion)-load of Daleks. And it was clearly grudgingly given, too, as the Crack kept asking that age-old question that the Doctor HAD to choose not to answer. No thank you notes, no communication, no parade (although interdimensional celebrations, I’m prepared to admit, would probably have been a bit inconvenient given the circumstances), not even a dropped email into his TARDIS computer – just, “here you go, have a whole sheaf of new lives, plus extra explosive power to kill our enemies, thanks.” I kind of wondered of they considered how dangerous it could’ve been to give the Doctor THAT MUCH regeneration energy all in one go. But, admittedly, this is a sketchy subject; the Master got a whole new regeneration cycle but we never saw him receive it, so we don’t know how dangerous that is. Okay, I’ll give them that. Grudgingly.

    Then, they come across this prophecy from their glorified stone circuit board (I wonder if
    that has something to do with how the Weeping Angels came to be – just a thought, there) that’s made up of a whole bunch of terrifying ghosts with a whole bunch of even more terrifying ghosts guarding it that there’s something called the Hybrid and, apparently, the one guy who knows anything at all about it – the Doctor – is on the other side of the Space-Time continuum and can’t be reached right now, so, let’s plot a way to trick him into coming to us via his confession dial. After all – he’s bound to have one of those handy! What’s that you say? It could risk the lives of people on Earth and possibly the Doctor’s friends and loved ones? SO THE (sonic deletion) WHAT?!?

    Then, we’ll use his confession dial to torture him until he finally gives up and gives us the information we need, and then we may canonise him or celebrate him or not, depending on how good a mood we’re in and how we feel about him being back on Gallifrey where he’s sure to cause trouble. So – better fill his confession dial full of his worst nightmares just to make sure we do incredible amounts of psychological damage! It may take a while, but he couldn’t possibly hold out that long, could he? I mean, he’s stubborn and all, but WE COULD JUST TORTURE THE (sonic deletion) INFORMATION OUT OF HIM, couldn’t we? We’re the Time Lords! We saved his lives! He OWES us!

    Of course, nobody expected the youngster to be so stubborn that he stayed in there for
    FOUR AND A HALF BILLION YEARS, rather than give up what he knew (which was
    pitifully little), but you know, call me kooky, stupid, or humane, but after a week or two, I might’ve gone in just to check up on him. You know, try to talk some sense into him. I know words are his weapons, and he’s usually stubborn, but if I’m reasonable, he will be, too, right? He’ll understand why we’re torturing him like this – right?!? He won’t mind at all that one of his human associates died because of our actions, because, ultimately, they’re not all that important, really, are they?!? “The Hybrid’s the thing,” to paraphrase Shakespeare, who could have written at least twenty new places based on observing these (sonic deletion) cretins.

    And then, when he makes his way out, somebody tells someone important, and the Time Lords’ FIRST REACTION is to send an armed vessel to frighten the living (sonic deletion) out of a bunch of innocent villagers who are just grateful to be alive and who know who they should be grateful to. Smooth move, cream cheese! Way to assure the people you’re protecting and ruling that you have their best interests at heart!

    And then, after dealing with all of that mess, the Doctor demands the use of a piece of
    Gallifreyan technology we’ve never heard of before: an extraction chamber, which is solely
    designed to yank someone out of their time stream ONE NANO SECOND before they die – so that they can TALK TO THEM. Ask them questions. Demand information and assistance from them. And oh yeah, by the way – thanks for helping out, we’re sending you back to kick your own interstellar spiritual bucket now. The arrogant presumption of these (sonic deletion)!

    And after the Doctor shoots the General and whisks Clara away, the soldier calls the Medics to inform them of a regeneration in process (not an unreasonable precaution) from “Extraction Chamber SEVEN.” Which means either SIX ENTIRE MODELS existed before this one (hey, there’s nothing like perfecting a process) or that SIX OTHER ADDITIONAL
    ROOMS exist for the possible purposes of SIMULTANEOUS OPERATIONS – apparently this process is so ordinary and so commonly used that other chambers need to be
    available and in working order in case one is busy or it fails! WHO THE (sonic deletions
    aplenty here) MANAGES TO SPEND BILLIONS OF YEARS THINKING THIS WAY?!?!?

    It’s no wonder the Doctor ran away from these (sonic deletion)-wrinkles – as mad as he was by their standards, he was the only SANE one of the bunch! All other sane Time Lords were either assassinated, involved in other work with no leadership roles, or matchmaking with the help of their TARDISes. Even the Master/Mistress is an interstellar Lucy Van Pelt compared to these monsters! And that’s exactly what they are – Clara hit it right on the head.

    As for the Doctor almost stooping to their level and planning on erasing Clara’s memories – he WAS trying to keep her safe. Just like he was trying to keep Donna safe and alive. With Donna, he had no choice – he HAD to do it; she would’ve died from her transformation otherwise. I hate it, I’d’ve looked for another way if it were me, but hey — I
    can agree with the why in that case. I’m with Clara here, though; I can’t agree with it here, because her life – such as it was, all ONE HEARTBEAT OF IT left – wasn’t in danger per
    se, he just thought it would be. And she’s right – she never asked him for his protection.
    And like Deb said; it could’ve been a ruse for Clara’s benefit, to keep them both from saying
    ALL that they really needed to say. Thinking it over, I’m suddenly agreeing with that theory
    more and more.

    One last thing – I’m betting Ohila of the Sisterhood of Karn was the President’s daughter, and I’m betting Rassilon was her father. And I”m betting she was with the Doctor down there in the catacombs of the Cloister pits with him when they were young. There’s just something between them – watch it again, and see if you can see what I see. NOBODY calls the Doctor “Boy!” like that and gets away with it without a comment from the Doctor – there had to have been something more there. But of course – they’ll never say.

    Yeah, in conclusion, I’d be quite happy if we never see the Time Lords or Gallifrey ever
    again. It’s not just their hats that cramp the Doctor’s style; it’s the way they operate. The code of the Doctor all seems to come back to this edict – whatever the Time Lords would choose to do, do its polar opposite, and that’ll get you at least most of the way to solving
    the problem.

    Thank you for putting up with this rant. And join me, won’t you, in having the Mistress
    rip Rassilon a new one? At this point, considering all the insanity this (sonic deletion) causes, I think that would bring a vast improvement to Gallifrey on all levels. Maybe the Doctor could even go home again.

    • You are correct. The Time Lords (and ESPECIALLY Rassilon) are all a bunch of tools. For quick reference, I recommend the last two episodes of “The War Games,” the first five minutes of “Genesis of the Daleks” (the first shot fired in the Time War), “The Deadly Assassin,” “Invasion of Time,” “Arc of Infinity,” and “The Five Doctors.” There are lots of other appearances of the Time Lords in the classic series, but these are examples of them at their absolute tool-iest.

  10. Erika:

    1. Reactions to drama tell us more about the viewer than the drama. I think your reaction shows you to be empathic, kind, and resilient.

    2. I’m glad you didn’t give up on Doctor Who.

    Have a nice day.

    Luke

  11. Juan Sanmiguel said:

    Iam with Deb I do not think the the mind wipe was as complete as implied. I think he knows the is a Clara shaped gap in his head and cannot figure out who it is.

    It was a good episode. It was unnerving seeing the Doctor being cruel (I am not sure about cowardly) and its great Clara demanding he act like a Doctor.

  12. This was an amazing piece of television, and a satisfying end to the story of the Doctor and Clara. I tend to feel uneasy watching these most Moffaty tales, as it is not always easy to tell whether what I am seeing is brilliant or totally confused. I usually opt for brilliant – life is easier that way.

    A couple of things that occur:

    – the white TARDIS was a beautiful integration of the original with newer elements. One thing that particularly caught my eye – and I don’t know if it was intended – was that the distorted reflection of the roundels in the perspex wall looked just like a frame of the original title sequence – groovy flowing blobs. If that was planned, then I am in awe of Ms Talalay and the cinematographer.

    – Verity! started with a review of The Snowmen. So your whole run to date has encompassed the era of Clara. Congratulations to you all, and I am looking forward to how you explore the next stage in the Doctor’s journey. As noted earlier in the discussions, you are an indispensable companion to my Doctor Who life. Thanks!

  13. Erika’s reaction to Clara’s death was/is like the Doctor’s reaction: raging grief. Heaven Sent and Hell Bent show the Doctor dealing with Clara’s death – perhaps eventually (re)watching them will help her work through it? Certainly some of the scenes in both episodes are intended to be cathartic.

  14. Doctor 15 High Council 0 said:

    Super podcast!

    It was so cool that the Doctor used a variation of the Brigadier’s “get off my world” to the destroyer

    Is Clara a Matrix Ghost without all the screaming and dodgems?

    Erika, I hear you. I still haven’t forgiven JK Rowling for a particular character demise. He’s still alive and snarky

  15. New to this – so I’m starting with an enormous “Thank you very much chaps, excellent podcasts” – but following up to identify rapidly why I’ve been forced to post.

    Clara cheating death. Wrong.

    OK – So I know that this is reflecting me, not the story, and that it’s a fiction, and that it’s meant to be entertaining and that companions dying is really really really hard to face.

    But when Clara did die; died a young adult, died without reason, died after setting her house in order, died on her own terms, and died ‘well’, it resonated very strongly with me. I read this showing the world what I see painfully often working with children and young people with cancers; sometimes there is no fix. And no-one can’t cheat that.

    And so Clara cheating death. Wrong.

  16. This episode proves again why Verity! is my favorite podcast. Thank you for talking about the emotional fallout of the last three episodes of the season. I’m glad that I’m not alone in my emotional funk. I’m still not out of it, but I’m consuming fanfiction as quickly as it’s being written so that is helpful. Thank you Deb for the head cannon that the Doctor does remember somewhat, that also helps. Also in my coping arsenal, the RadioTimes linked to a fan created guitar TAB for “Clara” so I can put on my sunglasses and wallow with my guitar.

  17. In the middle of the podcast now – I am one hundred percent with Erika’s emotional reaction. I was so angry after Face the Raven, not only for myself, but also for my 10-year-old daughter who identifies so strongly with Clara. Her ending was fabulous, but honestly, the two of us are still upset.

  18. critchie17 said:

    i was waiting all week for this podcast! Thank you for such clever, bright discussions! I was watching this episode with my Who-tolerant hubs…who put up with me shouting “Amy and Rory’s cafe!” “the barn!” plus so much more….I have always felt angry at Donna’s mind wipe and this felt so much more “fair”…but I agree with Deb that The Doctor ‘s mind wipe wasn’t complete…I did choke up when he said it was Amy and Rory I was here with…and loved itwhen The Doctor put on the velvet coat with such style….

  19. Neil Ottenstein said:
  20. Excellent episode ladies, perhaps even the best one yet.

    Erica, I am right there with you. I was also traumatized by Clara’s death. I immediately spent the next few days immersing myself in podcasts, listening to shows with hosts who were equally distraught and skipping shows where people couldn’t care less. The only difference is that I would not have abandoned Doctor Who (after more than 40 years, that seems unlikely). I just wouldn’t have accepted the next two or three companions that come on board (especially if they should have the temerity to survive traveling with the Doctor…the nerve!). And I am still in weird state of shock. I don’t expect I’ll be forgiving Moffat for this particular suckerpunch any time soon.

    That being said, I am ECSTATIC about the ending that was crafted for Clara. I’ve never written fan-fiction before, but this scenario is giving me LOTS of ideas. And why stop with seeing Clara visit Jane Austen? Wouldn’t you like to see what kind of sparks would fly when she meets Captain Jack? And it seems to me that a perfect storyline for her adventures with Ashilder would be for Clara to teach her how to be brave again. It seems to me that somewhere after the events of “The Woman Who Lived,” Ashilder lost her nerve. And Clara could teach her all about being brave.

    And Erica, while there’s life, there’s hope. As long as Clara is one heartbeat from death and still kicking around, there is the potential to find a way to beat the Quantum Shade.

    Deb, I’m not sure when it was stated during the episode, but I do remember that the Doctor had an idea of who Clara was. When we first see the Doctor at the beginning of the episode, he had just arrived after doing a ton of research to find out who this “Clara” person is that he doesn’t remember (how he did without his Tardis is another mystery). So he knew the adventures they had been through together. He may have even known what she looked like. He just didn’t have any emotional connection to that knowledge.

    I also cast my vote of “boo” at the Doctor killing the General. Remember that a Time Lord regenerates as a way of cheating death. The only way the General could have regenerated was if his body suffered lethal damage. And while the Doctor has killed before, and he will do so again, this was just capricious and unnecessary. It was only done so that we could see a male-to-female regeneration. I expect better from the Doctor.

    Orson Pink? He was from (what was at that time) the most likely potential future timeline. When Danny Pink died, that potential future was cut off, like the branch of a tree falling away after being struck by lightning. That is one of the greatest tragedies about death. It not only takes away the person who dies but all of the potential futures that could have been. When Danny was hit by that truck, it was as if Orson was hit right along side him.

    And for the record…this “hybrid” nonsense was utter bullocks.

    • Thanks for the kind words!

      I didn’t ever think I’d consider pressing “pause” on watching Doctor Who either. I’ve been a fan for nearly a decade less than you, but >30 years is still a long time, and the Doctor has been a member of my family, when it comes right down to it, for the vast majority of my life. Clara’s death affected me strongly enough that I genuinely considered setting all of that behind me–at least for a while–for the sake of my own mental health. Sometimes even the most passionate fans have to take such actions, and there’s no shame in that.

      I fervently agree with your point that “where there’s life, there’s hope”. Until I see otherwise on the show, my headcanon is that Clara and Ashildr DO find a way to escape the quantum shade!

      As for the Doctor learning about Clara, I don’t think he went anywhere to do that. (Thus he didn’t need a TARDIS.) I think he woke up in the desert and simply dug through his own brain (figuratively speaking). He still has memories of the Mummy on the Orient Express and the Ice Warrior on the sub and everything else. He didn’t go to those places to learn that, he remembers them. He just doesn’t remember anything about Clara and her part in them. That’s what he meant by reconstructing Clara from the hole she left.

      I think the Doctor killing the General was a necessary element in this story. He’s not ready to give up Clara until he goes too far and breaks all his own rules. If he never gets to the point where he’s ready to kill someone (even someone who can regenerate), then he never gets to the point where he recognizes he needs to stop. So killing the General wasn’t just to see a M-to-F regeneration. I think the regeneration was a bonus. That action had to happen one way or the other. It’s not like it’s the first time the Doctor pulls a gun on someone. The fact that he uses it is the whole point.

  21. The more I think about it, the more I love that Ashidlr – a character whose capacity for “goodness” remain questionable – is the one in that TARDIS with Clara. I love thinking about the choices that their adventures will present to her, and how Clara might be able to succeed in inspiring Ashildr where the Doctor couldn’t. –S

    P.S. The t-shirts are selling like mad, and we can’t wait to see everyone representing at Gally!

  22. I loved this episode. Actually I didn’t much care for the last one. It was too long for a one man show. I love Capaldi but not THAT much. I love the Big Finish possibilities. But while everyone is asking about Orson Pink, I want to know about that guy Ashildr gave the immortality device to. What happened to him?

  23. Ichabod said:

    The script is now available online, and I found comparing the written story to what was made and included in the screening to be enlightening.

    The Doctor does remember the chain of events leading to the diner. That’s the story he’s reconstructed: a traveling companion named Clara played a crucial part in these adventures, and he remembers what she did. But he doesn’t remember *her* — her face, how she sounded, and most importantly, how *obsessed* with her he became. That’s gone now. He’s been looking for traces of her while searching for the TARDIS, which Clara and Ashildr bring to Nevada for him, after he’d left it in London to search for Trap Street. It will free him from any remaining impulse to keep looking for this known/unknown “Clara” — he’ll have the stars again instead; much clearer, more familiar. All he takes with him of her is a name, a story, and a song. It’s all he needs (The Legend of Robin Hood, who was also real . . . ).

    He hasn’t connected waitress Clara with companion Clara at the end; he might recognize the portrait as “the waitress” he just talked with, but why would that equate to “Clara” for him, when he doesn’t remember the face of Clara herself? He’s always seen her soul to soul anyway, remember — “Clara Oswald, you will always look the same to me”. Old face, young face, it made no difference; he couldn’t even tell which was which. That Impossible Girl level of recognition has been obliterated by the neural blocker, so he can leave it all behind.

    The script had a visual bit here, where he touches the painting before going into the TARDIS — but *that was left out of the final cut*. I think this means we’re meant to understand that he still doesn’t know who the waitress was or how her picture appeared on the TARDIS. He said he wanted to see what Rigsy’s art did next, and now he sees that next effort but has no idea of who painted it or why. So he can walk on by, into the TARDIS, and obey the instruction on his chalk board (“be a doctor!”) by putting on his velvet coat, commanding a new sonic from the console, snapping the doors shut, and taking off without a backward look. Maybe he almost remembers that Clara like the that coat best on him, but whether he knows that she wrote the words on the chalk board or not is unknown. Outside, the painting crumbles and flakes away — ignored by him. It’s some vague puzzle to him, gone with the past, and he’s facing his (for the time being) solitary future.

    As for the big decision in the white TARDIS —
    That he meant to erase *her* memory instead of his own was the height of blind arrogance, since *she* wasn’t the problem. *He* was: “Look what I did for fear of losing you: I became the hybrid”. Not her; not them. Him. He sees it, finally (“Oh, Clara; what am I doing? You’re right . . . “) and with very undoctorly humility, cedes control of the proceedings. He offers instead an equal say in who forgets and who remembers. Fortunately, it’s his memory that’s
    wiped, which frees them from each other: the Apprentice who is now a Journeyman, ready to go out on her own, and the Magician who has taught her what he could and learned what she had to teach him, and who threw away his personal rule-book in his grief and fury until she boldly and rightly refused to do as she was told.

    In his fumbling, erratic, and improvisational way, the idiot in the blue box has given her exactly what she always wanted (minus a single heartbeat and a hard death waiting): a chance to be a “doctor” herself, adventuring among the stars with a companion of her own. I find this a perfect resolution for them both, and very, very good-hearted and beautiful as well.

    • Korina said:

      ::applauds:: Bravo! Bravo! Very well said! *Excellently* well said!

      ‘the Apprentice who is now a Journeyman, ready to go out on her own,’

      When do you think she’ll be ready to become a Master? Bwahahahaaa! ;P

  24. Aussie Kat said:

    The hybrid. There are a lot of assumptions flying around about the Doctor being half human. But he could more easily be half Gallifreyan and half Karnian.

  25. David said:

    My first time listen to your podcast; it’s great.

    As for the episode…

    This episode had so many great things going for it:
    – A great send-off of Clara, possibly the best companion the show’s ever had;
    – A wonderful opening for a great sounding Big Finish series: “Clara Who? Me!”
    – An awesome new/old Tardis set;
    – A definitive gender/racial regeneration scene;
    – The Doctor on Gallifrey;
    – The Doctor taking over Gallifrey in mere minutes;
    – Clara gets to choose about the memory wipe.

    But I just can’t get over:
    – The Doctor murders someone who refused to kill him;
    – The Doctor conquers the world;
    – The Doctor betrays the trust of everyone on Gallifrey by risking all their lives;
    – The Doctor risks all time and space and break the rules to cheat death;
    – The Doctor being unable to cope with a relationship break up, risks killing everyone and then proposes wiping memories as the only solution???? Take about bad break-up…

    The antagonist and Monster of the Week was: The Doctor.

    And let’s not get into how much his behaviour regarding Clara biases my view of his behaviour in the Christmas Special…

    Sorry… Had to get that out.

  26. […] the Doctor. The love I have for Clara can he heard on virtually any podcast where she is mentioned, the Hell Bent episode being the first that springs to […]

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