Six Smart Women Discussing Doctor Who

And with that, series 12 comes to an end! Join Erika, Katrina, and Tansy as we talk about how our canon has regenerated once again. We dig into many possibilities and also try to help Kat figure out exactly how she feels about this story and why. Trail mix, anyone?

What did you think of “The Timeless Children”? Drop us a tweet or let us know in the comments!

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Comments on: "Episode 221 – Remember The Timeless Children" (9)

  1. Squibby said:

    I’m really not sure what to say here without ranting, so here’s my rant.

    OK, so now the Doctor is Gallifrey and Earth Jesus (the child of a human woman and an immortal, to judge by ‘ Old Fingers’ comments a few episodes ago, who has died repeatedly to remake Galifreyans in her image).

    And apparently not only is there a human and galifreyan genocide, neither of which seem to upset the Doctor at all, but they contradict the timelines in the flipping classic stories mentioned in this story.

    And DESTROY the 50th Anniversary special

    WHY NAME THE CLASSIC STORIES IF YOU’RE GOING TO GET THE DETAILS WRONG? Perhaps because you hate the show?

    What a load of pretentious, poorly plotted poop.

    So, how did the 4 people in cyber suits teleport from the galifrey side of the wormhole back to Ko Sharmus’ s camp? How did the Master destroy galifrey, kill the timelords when there are spare tardises conveniently left around each second corner? Wouldn’t the timelords have just taken off in their conveniently located tardises?

    My Doctor is a cosmic hobo who never turns his or her back on genocide.

    I’m with Kat, I’m much rather watch the absorbaloft than this
    In fact I’d rather listen to a 2 hour loop of Doctor In Distress than rewatch this tripe

    RIP Doctor Who 1963-2020

    • terminuspodcast said:

      You’ve articulated so many of my feelings, thank you. I’m kinda just feeling a bit shell-shocked right now and while I keep seeing people saying they ‘Don’t get the hate’, I honestly don’t get the love.

      And it’s not that I’m just ‘trying to be negative’ or ‘being a hater’, I thought the story (and most of Chibnall’s era — let’s be honest) was really pretty terrible.

      Also, for me, making the Doctor the Super-Special-Timelord/Space-Jesus kinda takes away agency from the character. No longer is it just about the Doctor being ‘special’ because of their actions and beliefs, but now they’re inherently seen as special because of their huge genetic role in Gallifreyan history. And yes, that may not bother some, of course, but to me, I’d much prefer the Rebel Time Lord breaking their society’s rules in order to explore and help people throughout the universe (and certainly *not* ignore genocide — that floored me).

      Yeah, I think I’m just not very keen on Chibnall’s view of my beloved character. I mean, I don’t even recognize them on the show anymore.

      P.S. Plus, for me it’s not just about changing lore — I can adjust to that. It’s about it being *so* badly written that I was amazed that *anyone* even liked it. Obviously, YMMV, of course, but I literally thought that was some of the worst Doctor Who I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen all the available serials — plus, recons and such — from Classic Who onward). :/

  2. Sarah42 said:

    It’s just as well that Capaldi’s the last official Doctor for me, because S11 was terrible, and I only watched Spyfall and this load of codswallop from S12 because Sacha Dhawan’s Master was interesting. I’ll acknowledge that Whittaker actually managed to act in this one, as if having Dhawan around gave her something to spark off of, even if it was only to helplessly react as he held her captive and endlessly explained the plot to her. Unfortunately, Chibnall’s characters are mostly nonentities; the companions are apparently supposed to be a great team because we hear that they are, but they barely talk to each other. …ah, forget it.

    Lord, Chibnall’s a fracking hack. Won’t be watching DW again until he’s gone – unless it was the plan to be so bad that DW quietly ends with S13 without anyone much caring.

  3. Icon_UK said:

    I genuinely can’t see half the arguments being made against this reveal, especially given how… well, let’s be charitable and call it “flexible” (though I’m tempted to suggest “hilarious”), the show’s approach to continuity and who the Doctor is has been in it’s 57 years.

    Little things like the Doctor not being confirmed as an alien until Pertwee for one thing (As opposed to a time-displaced amnesiac human from then future) then having the “living forever, barring accidents” becoming “12 regenerations” becoming “But we can gift someone a new cycle if we WANT to” and “I can regenerate without changing my face if I need to heal myself because great cliffhanger”.

    To me, this new information doesn’t change a thing about the Doctor as we known them (or indeed as they know themselves, for the most part), This may change WHAT the Doctor is, but doesn’t change WHO the Doctor is. As far as the Doctor is concerned she has always been a standard Time Lord with 13 bodies available to her (until she was gifted a new cycle) and memories that only go back as far as Hartnell’s Doctor, and everything about her life is based from him as a starting point.

    The fact she has lives before that is interesting, and possibly disturbing since she doesn’t know what they did, but it doesn’t make her any less the her (or he) that the Doctor has always been,

    It’s reasonable to assume that any Time Lords outside the Division didn’t know this about her either, which would be pretty much everyone on Gallifrey, assuming the Division was even still active after the Doctor stopped working for them.

    It’s also possible that when the Division mind wiped the Doctor, that the 12 regeneration limitation added to genetic code, so she now IS an ordinary Time Lord who needed the new cycle given to her, and which the Time Lords gave him in good faith. (Though I like the idea that 11 regenerating into 12 was quite so destructive because he’d just been landed with a huge chunk of regenerative energy that just sort of went into him and then right back out because he didn’t actually need it, and that gave him enough spare power to take down an entire space armada,)

    Plus, this leads to the interesting question of Susan. Suppose the Doctor’s children and grandchildren carried the Doctor’s original genetic potential for infinite regenerations. If the First Doctor found out that Susan’s genetic code was NOT normal Time Lord and someone was after her for it (maybe the Division IS still around), that would explain a lot about why he took her with him when he left.

    As for Ruth’s TARDIS being a Police Box, well, a question which has been at the back of my mind for decades is “Why IS the TARDIS a properly lit-up police box if it was in a junkyard?” That’s not something you’d have found in a junkyard in 1963. is it? It’d become a battered old chest of drawers or a wardrobe or something like that, something that looked like actual junk. There’s a story to be told there…

    And that’s what I’m left with again, this reveal left a lot of potential for new stories, makes the Doctor a mystery again, which they haven’t been for a VERY long time and was a big part of the early years, without actually changing who the Doctor is, from the point of view of the Doctor at any rate.

    (Apologies if you made half these points yourself, I’ve been taking in a LOT of podcasts and message boad opinions in a very short period of time, and some of “who said what” has blurred a little!

    • Squibby said:

      Hi Icon_Uk, Idon’t have a problem with many Doctors before the current one.

      My problem is with the Super Jesus Doctor part of the story, the implications from ‘Can You Hear Me’ that the Doctor is naturally immortal or half-human half-immortal rather than the result of an advanced race’s developments. So we’re going from Science Fiction to fanfuction fantasy.

      And with choosing to have an ineffectual Doctor who doesn’t care about genocide and to choose to give the Doctory actions to Graham and the Master. The BBC showrunners may have cast a woman but they assigned the stongest parts of the story to the male cast.

      All ‘tell’ and little ‘show’.

      The showrunners hasn’t worked out that the Doctor demonstrating that he/she is ‘the smartest person in the room’ doesn’t mean talking fast. It means Doing things cleverly, like the Master in this story

      • Icon_UK said:

        I don’t see the Doctor as “Space Jesus” because of this (Unless I’m woefully miisunderstanding how that term is being used). “Space Jesus” would be (I think) if the Timeless Child had consciously volunteered to give up their own lives to save the Shobogan from oblivion/damnation, and that’s not what happened.

        Rather, Tecteun became obsessed with experimenting/killing an innocent child (who seems to have viewed her as a parent), for her own advancement and so her people would gain power The Timeless Child seems never to have had any sort of a choice in the matter..

        In this context I’d say there was a much closer parallel to the real world Henrietta Lacks, whose cancer cells were monetised without her consent or involvement.

        As for assigning the Doctory parts to Graham, I really don’t know what you mean. He showed initative, but that’s not uncommon in companions, is it?

        I don’t see the Doctor as ineffectual here either, just servicing the plot as required. And they did manage to stop the Cyberman (via the not uncommon plot point of someone making a heroic sacrifice because of being inspired by the Doctor), This episode in particular was an infodump, and since it couldn’t be from the Doctor, the Master was the logical choice, but I found the scale of the story enough to carry me along.

        Still, YMMV and I’m sorry that you didn’t enjoy it.

  4. My biggest problem with this story is also The Doctor considering genocide, again, of his own people. I want to see her bluff and outsmart The Master, like trapping him and the Cyber Masters inside a portrait, like in Day of the Doctor (but just that one small space, not the whole planet). Having someone else come in and make the sacrifice is the weaker move plotwise.

    As for bringing Gallifrey back, there are a few ways to do that. Rassilon and the other exiled Timelords could return, or the Witches from Brain of Morbius and Night of the Doctor, or both.

    I’d love to hear what the other 3 Verities thought about this story! I imagine Liz won’t like it, Lynne will, and Deborah be somewhere in the middle.Can’t wait for the next podcast!

  5. It’s totally cool not to dig any part of Doctor Who. But if your comments throw shade at people who do love it, you’re doing it wrong here. Keep that in mind, folks. Some of y’all are treading perilously close to the edge.

    • terminuspodcast said:

      No shade was intended on my end. I’m very sorry if I’m one of the people who came off that way.

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