[Preemptive Spoiler Alert]
The Doctor has always been known for his ability to give a good jog and to leave his enemies and the horrors of the universe in his dust. But that’s not the type of running I’m here to discuss, I’m here to discuss a form of running that is more familiar to most of us
The Doctor is a runner, he stampedes away from his problems. Similar to most of us he runs away from his problems and his inner demons and I’m not talking about the aliens and baddies we see him size up and seal away. I’m talking about the complex feelings that he has been carrying with him since we met the Doctor following the time-war. When I ask myself what I should discuss in this blog post, I saw at a quick glance no one has discussed his running and dismissal of his own trauma. We see him take blow after physical blow in his adventures, but we never see him truly shaken up except when the Daleks are the foes in question, or when the horrors of the time-war creep back up. When these events unfold we see an unnerved Doctor. This Doctor is a bit unlike the one we have normally seen calm under pressure and with an unwavering amount. Let’s travel back to the TV episode “Dalek”, when we see how the Doctor becomes desperate in destroying the Dalek. The Doctor is horrified that the Dalek even exists at all, his very presence drove fear into it, but vice-versa its living existence drew the idea that some of the Daleks survived the time-war into him. At the end of this TV episode we do see that the Doctor has become determined he wants its destruction, and the look in his face is one of determined terror. It’s obvious the time-war has left its scars on the Doctor and have we ever addressed these scars? The Doctor has been avoiding that topic and he has never brought it up, it has always been brought up by the presence of Daleks, or his companions seeking to know who the Doctor is and even the Doctor is uncomfortable with telling them any of these details.
Now we’ve examined that the Doctor has scars in himself from his war, we see he runs but what now? Well the easiest conclusion is that the Doctor’s theme of running has gone inwards, it has become a plot-device that takes a literal and metaphysical sense. He is now running from himself, and his scars he never stops to heal and he never stops to stitch himself up. The Doctor runs and runs and runs, and it’s a long while before he ever becomes resolved. We have to wait until the end of Matt Smith’s tenure as the Doctor before we see him stop and consider his actions and behavior and we see the 9th Doctor was a man motivated by fear and loss, the 10th was a runner who ran from his scars and that 11 was a man pretending to be a child as to convince himself the scars were never there, and its clear the Doctor has been running from the one thing he fears the most, his insides, his conscious, his beliefs, and the horrors of the time-war imprinted onto himself. The Doctor has began running inside his head, and avoiding the presence and existence of any of the pain that lays inside of him. We see he is doing more than physical running from his enemies and those who seek to do evil, but he also is truly running from these problems normally he runs away from danger only to come back with his signature timey-wimey sucker punch but instead he runs and runs and never stops to face why he runs in this case.