Stefan’s Reaction to Doctor Who

As someone who had seen many episodes of Doctor Who before deciding to take this class, all of the episodes I have watched thus far for class are all ones I have seen at least once, if not two or three times previously. We are not yet to my favorite episodes, I love Rory and Amy and the relationship they have with the Doctor, however, I have enjoyed revisiting Nine and Ten along with all of their companions because I haven’t seen the show since it was taken off of Netflix.

I have enjoyed re-watching all these episodes even more because I have been watching them with my fiancé, Stefan, who had never seen Doctor Who before I started this class. I had talked to him about it previously, but never shown him an episode. Watching Doctor Who from the rebirth of the show with a first time watcher has been extremely enjoyable for me. I enjoy seeing his reaction to big plot twists or his reaction to the different aliens. One of Stefan’s most shocked reactions so far has been when Jack revealed he is called the Face of Boe. I can’t wait for him to see more of the show throughout the semester and see his reaction to more big events.

Overall, he thinks that the show gets much better as it goes on. He had an extremely hard time getting into the show in the beginning, but he is blown away by how everything is so connected and how they have done a good job paying attention to detail. He enjoys the show a lot more now, but still says he wouldn’t just sit down and watch it by himself. When I asked Stefan to rate the show out of ten, he said it was a four in the beginning but now he thinks it’s a seven or an eight.

Stefan’s favorite companion so far is Martha because she is smarter than Rose but not as much of a know-it-all as Donna is. Donna is his least favorite because he doesn’t like her character and doesn’t like her behavior. I’m excited for him to meet Eleven, Rory, and Amy in the future and I hope he continues to think the show gets better as we go forward.


Rose Tyler’s Costuming Makes Complete Sense

Costuming is so important to a character because it shows who they are in ways that maybe other ways couldn’t. Think about Rose Tyler’s costuming for a moment. It’s pretty casual, isn’t it? Although occasionally she gets a nice outfit here and there, Billie Piper’s costuming in the Doctor Who episodes typically includes baggy pants, plain shirts that don’t usually match the rest of her outfit, and thin, 2005 zip-up hoodies.


It’s amazing how much clothing can tell us about a person in a television show or a movie. Before we even knew anything about Rose as a character, we could likely tell that she isn’t very wealthy, and that she doesn’t dress like she expects much out of her day.

If you think about who she really is as a character, it makes a lot of sense why she’s dressed the way that she is. She lives a simple life with her mother working a simple job at a shop, and dates a boy named Mickey Smith. Her outfits are consistently casual throughout almost all episodes that she is in, even when her lifestyle gets more exciting and she spends most of her time with the Doctor. Perhaps they stay the same to reflect back on where she began so we are reminded where she started and who she has always been as a character.

Rose’s costuming definitely isn’t for impressing the audience, but is rather a way to be as real to the audience as possible about what kind of a person she is. She is somewhat a girly girl, but she is also unafraid of getting her hands dirty, thinking through difficult situations, and ultimately completing very important tasks that save the world in several episodes.

Comparing Rose’s clothing to Martha’s, Martha’s outfits are much more professional than Rose’s. Since she is an upper-class med student, her costuming looks are more polished and put together. She typically wears a brown leather jacket, bootcut jeans, and heels. Unlike Rose, she had a path that she was following for her life, and she had goals to become a doctor before meeting the Doctor (ironic, I know). Rose really wasn’t going anywhere before she met the Doctor.

Martha’s clothing involves dark colors that represent professionalism, while Rose’s clothing includes dull colors, and sometimes brighter, more youthful colors. Some of these clothing choices are even reflected in Rose’s mother’s wardrobe of bright sweatpants and matching jackets as well as big scrunchies and creative jewelry. Rose’s clothes are practically a more downplayed version of what her mother wears, which is far from professional.

Overall, costuming can be very effective and helpful to viewers to find out more about who characters are before their story even begins.


My Unpopular Opinion

When I first joined this class, I honestly had no idea what Doctor Who was. I came into it with an open mind and with hopes of finding a new show to binge outside of my comfort zone. However, this was not the case. I have discovered that sci-fi is not my cup of tea and found the show to be very cheesy. That is, until Martha Jones was introduced.

Let me start by saying, I hate Rose Tyler. She drives me absolutely nuts and I find her very annoying. I didn’t realize how much I disliked her until Martha Jones came into the picture. Martha stands her ground and isn’t the damsel in distress that we know Rose to be. Though Martha is very forward about her feelings toward The Doctor, I believe she makes it clear that she is still an independent woman. Not to mention she is a perfect representation of this class’ primary focus, she is diverse because of her race.

I must say I was disappointed in the way the writers handled this issue particularly in the episode, The Shakespeare Code. Martha definitely should have been worried about walking around freely during this time period. I’m not sure if the writers were just too lazy to find a way to address this issue, were blinded by their own privilege, or thought it would provide a bit of comedic relief. Hoping it wasn’t the later and either way, I’m not laughing. Racial discrimination is STILL a serious issue and I believe the writers should have used their platform to discuss it, or at least been more historically accurate about it.

I’ve read a lot of bad things about Martha and I think the main reason people hate her is because Rose shipped with The Doctor first. Who’s to say it wouldn’t be the other way around if Martha had came into the picture during the first season of the new who? Also, Martha was unaware of The Doctor’s relationship with Rose. People shouldn’t hate her for trying to “steal” him away, if anything we should just acknowledge the fact that The Doctor gets around. (I mean, he’s been around for hundreds of years, how could you be tied down to one person? Not to mention there were MANY other female companions before Rose.)

Overall, Martha has resurrected the show for me. She is a female character I can actually relate to. She is very intelligent and strong willed, and I admire her for that. Though I don’t necessarily ship Martha and the tenth Doctor, I do find her much easier to stand than Rose.

Saying goodbye to Martha :(

Throughout the series and episodes that I have watched during the course of this term I fell in love with Martha.  Literally from the Shakespeare episode I knew that i liked her more than Rose.  I realize that this is not a popular opinion nor realistic to many long time fans of the show due to the large role she had to follow up.  Rose was probably the best character to continually pull attention to and hook the audience due to her love for the Doctor and his eventual love for her.  The sob story stuff was a hit to everyone except me.  I hated Rose, she treated Mickey like crap, left her mom stranded alone and only cared about herself throughout time and space.  Too often she abandoned Mickey and others to follow her interest in the Doctor and would do anything for him.  Including look into the heart of the TARDIS.  Probably the worst way to end the suspenseful BAD WOLF thing they had going btw…  After she goes away (finally) they had to introduce a new female character to accompany the Doctor and continue tradition.  Luckily the producers had their heads on straight and decided to included a person of color as the main companion to the Doctor.  Martha to the rescue! In her to short of time on the show ,in my opinion, she was able to rationally change the Doctor and his perspective on many things.  Donna even says that she did him some good.  I hate Donna too by the way.  Only because shes loud and not Martha :-).  Martha brought a lot to the table and helped progress the story-line.  Most notably her addition to the racial diversity of the cast but also the long consistent flow that seemed to develop with Rose.  She loves him, he loves her but doesn’t show it well, he’ll do anything for her, has to save her… blah blah blah.

At the end of the day I feel that Martha Jones did the Doctor a lot of good and opened his eyes a little bit into how he affects the companions during and after he leaves them.  She didn’t let herself get stuck in the loop and continue to follow the Doctor like a puppy but rather made the grown up decision to help her family and stay at home.

Basically whenever a new character is introduced I am less and less excited because it isn’t Martha and all i want is for her to come back and have more adventures with the Doctor. 😦

The companions I’ve experienced in “New Who”

When i first started watching Doctor Who was in this class.  So my first companion that i was exposed to was Rose.  Within the first couple episodes I realized that I liked her personality and what she brought to the conversations and show as a whole.  I also was very thrilled when Mickey came on adventures as I enjoy his sarcasm and how he butts heads with the Doctor.   As I progressed through the series with the ninth Doctor I started noticing how awfully Rose treats Mickey and then started disliking her more and more.  Whenever she comes around he is like a little puppy and it’s so obvious that he loves her and would do anything for her.  She doesn’t seem to care because she’s so overwhelmed with the Doctor and always leaves him hanging.

The next companion that i was exposed to was Donna.  I HATE Donna.  She is so annoying, loud, and rude.  She is the epitome of childish, she has only been in one episode and yet she complained to the doctor, yelled and begged that guy to marry her and nagged throughout the episode.  I did not enjoy that episode at all and just wanted it to end.

Finally, Martha entered the picture.  The heroine of the series of female companions in my opinion.  She is humble and nice and loves the Doctor.  The first episode that I saw her in was the Shakespeare episode.  When she entered the conversation she always raised an important question or helped continue the episode as well as added an extra layer of diversity and often brought it up in episodes.  Clearly I am biased because she is easily my favorite.

Diversity in Doctor Who

Since Doctor Who rebooted in 2005 it has made strides in representing diversity on television.  Strides that can’t be said for many other television shows.  We open with episode one, “Rose” set in England, 2005, on a rare scene for television.  Rose is a working class woman who really is working class, not a dramatized version of this.  She lives in a small apartment with her single mother and wakes early every day to clock-in at her job in a department store.  She’s casual, dressing in clothes that certainly aren’t the height of fashion for the time, she isn’t dolled up in makeup only a professional could do, and what’s more; she isn’t the tiny waisted, long-legged pretty girl we’re used to seeing on TV.  Rose sets the pace for the growing diversity we’re about to be treated to in “Doctor Who”.

Not long after we get Captain Jack Harkness, the first openly pansexual in the history of “Doctor Who” who equally and openly shows attraction to men, women, aliens, and the non-gender conforming.  This was a huge leap for sexual and romantic diversity in “Doctor Who”, and one of the very first times queer people could see themselves in a character on television that wasn’t harmful.  

Next comes Martha, the first black companion on “Doctor Who”.  She’s intelligent and able to keep up with the Doctor’s rambling better, perhaps, than most other companions.  For people of colour, Martha is a big deal.  She’s a strong, woman of colour, in a leading role on one of the most popular television shows of all time.  With Martha, the television series continues to push forward for more diversity in their cast.

The next three companions, Donna, Amy, and Clara continue to portray strong female leads with diverse histories and personalities.  Along the way we meet a couple more sexually diverse characters, and characters from all different walks of life.  

Now we come to the most recent companion, Bill, who is both a woman of colour and openly gay.  She is one of the very first leading characters like this on television, a huge influence for women, people of colour, and members of the LGBTQIA+ community.  We finally have a leading character that many minorities can view themselves in in a positive way.

Soon we’ll be treated with something that came unexpected: a female Doctor.  Jodie Whittaker will soon take on the role of the Doctor and make history as the first female Doctor.  Many people are very excited about this.  We get a leading female, and also confirmation that Gallifreyans, or at least the Doctor, experience gender fluidity, which could be a nod toward the transgender community.

But when it comes to diversity, is it enough?  Though Doctor Who has done a great job positively representing different groups of people, we still are left itching for more.  Several groups who wish to see any kind of representation on television have been left out.  Doctor Who has come a long way, but I believe it can, and should, go much farther.  I hope that as the episodes continue to air we will continue to see a rise in representation in the cast.      

Martha Jones: The Companion

Martha Jones is the 10th Doctor’s second companion. Jones is an acquired taste. Some people say that Jones is too forward because she does not like to be the damsel in distress.  Martha likes to think of herself as the Doctor’s equal. She does not want to be looked as the companion that is dependent on the Doctor.  Martha looks at the Doctor as her partner and not as some powerful alien. She argues with the Doctor with a purpose. Martha does not like to be bossed around if it is not necessary. However, I think it is obvious that she is a dominating force when she on the show, but she is still just a companion. Martha does get in situations where the Doctor must rescue her. She also is seen to have a temper,


but I believe it because of her strong personality. She doesn’t like to know that there is nothing more that she could do to help the Doctor. A lot of the “Whovian” fandom dislike Martha because she fails to be a Rose or a Donna. Despite this, Martha works harder than any other companion. She leaves her medical career to continue helping the Doctor with his crazy adventures. Martha is loyal, reliable, and she’s strong. She is by far the best companion that the doctor has had.