Doctor Who: The Snowmen

Posted on December 27, 2012

One of the things that prevented us from ever truly embracing David Tennant’s run as The Doctor (,they wrote, inviting controversy and outrage to follow) was his version’s tendency to get awfully mopey and melodramatic. “Histrionic” is the word we’d use. Generally speaking, we don’t think The Doctor should get too bogged down in his emotions. The whole point to him, as we see it, is that he runs away; whether from things that get too ickily emotional or toward things that look shiny and interesting to him. For us, moping and wallowing should never get out of hand with this character.

We weren’t keen on another “Oh, my faithful companion is lost to me forever” opening, to be followed by the requisite “Plucky, cute English girl who has raised me out of my doldrums, how would you like a key to my box?” closing. It’s part of the mythology, of course, and hats must be tipped in that direction whenever a new companion hops on board, but we went into this special with two prejudicial thoughts: that there would be some furniture reshuffling in order to get the new character into the slot the old one occupied; and, because it’s a Doctor Who Christmas Special, that it would be somewhat shockingly sentimental; a deluge of Victorian-style maudlin. 

No, really. The Brits can be hilariously cynical in their entertainment, but sometimes we’re blown away by the overwhelming waves of sentimentality that pop up occasionally on British television. We realize, of course, that Americans are no less sentimental in their entertainment (and arguably more so), but because it’s British sentimentalism (i.e., different from our own; also: with more children’s choirs) coming at us, we tend to notice it much more.

So yes, we may as well admit it: we were happy to have another hour (plus) of new Who for Christmas, but we weren’t expecting it to be anything more than loud, sentimental, and somewhat expected overall. We are quite happy to report that the result was both more and less than what we expected.

Oh, it was sentimental, of course. The claptrap about “Nothing more powerful than a family crying on Christmas Eve” did not fail to produce eyerolls rather than eyes filling with tears. And yes, Clara is quite the plucky little English girl, isn’t she? Plucky and perky and perfect, our little Clara. Almost as if she were designed to be a companion to the Doctor. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

No, what we got, in place of Victorian melodrama, was, in fact, a diatribe against Victorian repression, oddly enough. And while the good Doctor moped, he had a gaggle of funny, sharp, lively and much-loved part-time companions on hand to point out just how annoyingly mopey he is. And while, yes, there was a family crying on Christmas eve, all dragged out in Victorian sleepwear, looking like a woodcut Christmas card, the energy level throughout was so high and the guest stars so much fun (a near-ageless Richard E. Grant out-moping the Doctor at every turn and the mellifluous sounds of Ian McKellen doing his best snow-Gandalf voice) that we didn’t mind a minute of the proceedings. Not even when Clara ascended the magic stairway to the clouds because — oh, did we not mention? We sometimes get irritated with the show’s latter-day habit of casting itself more as a fairy tale than a science fiction story.

So to recap: T Lo get annoyed with/roll their eyes at:

  1. The somewhat rote way companions are introduced after previous companions get “lost.”
  2. Sometimes hilarious levels of Victorian sentimentality in Who Christmas specials.
  3. The Moffat era’s reliance on fairy tale tropes and imagery to romanticize the character and setting.

But we loved this episode. We really did. Maybe it’s because Matt Smith just mopes better than David Tennant did. Maybe it’s because Clara really is kind of fun and smart. Maybe it’s because they introduced her in the standard manner and then had her die after falling from a great height; an event which undercut the sentimentality while at the same time providing new opportunities to revel in it. Maybe it’s because there’s a new mystery being set up as to who, exactly, Clara is. Maybe it’s because we’d watch just about anything with Strax, Jenny and Madame Vastra in it. Maybe it’s because (Blasphemy!) we forgot completely about the Ponds once the Doctor snapped out of his moping. Or maybe – and most likely – it was a combination of all these factors.  We refuse to beieve that it’s because we’re getting sentimental ourselves, in our old age. That can’t possibly be true, because we managed to devote at least some time during the episode to hating the TARDIS redesign. And thus, our angry nerd cred is maintained.

But really, we loved this episode. Great fun, and a great setup for the rest of the season.

 

    • lrober03

      “Takes one to snow one”

    • maggiemaggie

      …and how about that line when the maid answers the door: “I’m a lizard woman from the dawn of time and this is my wife!”

    • http://twitter.com/catherineeileen Catherine

      “I’m the clever one, and you’re the potato one.” 

      I could watch The Doctor and Strax all day.

      • Derek_anny

        It’s like a panto!  Because Po-Tay-Toes are linked with hobbits, and that quote is reminiscent of something Merry or Pippin said, I have decided it’s a reference to the new movie. And because I’m only a half-educated American, when you mix pop culture references with England at Christmastime, I think Pantomime.

    • thehousesparrow

      I am highly suspicious that Clara was *designed* for the Doctor, and is the pawn or instrument of some Big Bad to ensnare him with.  Kind of like how Turlough was used against the Fifth Doctor for a while.

      • insertcleverbit

        OOOH, I like this theory.  They haven’t met on the battlefield thingy yet, so this makes sense.

    • Reneesance

      I really just want to watch “The Adventures of the Veiled Detective”  Would that be too much to ask?   “I resent your implication, WE are married”
       

    • http://visceralresponse.com Dina dV

      I just couldn’t care about it because more and more the Matt Smith Doctor is descending back to its children’s entertainment roots.  Run run run, cheeky cheeky cheeky, moral of the story, the end.  I started wanting to punch everyone involved by the end of the last season because they were all just too precious.  This special was just as precious but with 100% less Arthur Darvill, and who wants that?

      But then Eccelston is still my favorite Doctor in this reboot, so my opinion will always be in the minority.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/OF5UVSD5VFKMO2HHHRPMWZSEBY Deb

        I’m with you on the Eccelston train….

      • Knightley

        Here,here!  Then again, Eccelston was my first Doctor, so I’m biased. 

        • drdarke

          My wife and I really liked both Eccelston’s and Tennant’s Doctors, @ViscResponse:disqus , @Deb and @Knightley:disqus – though my first and still favorite was Tom Baker back when PBS re-aired parts of the original DOCTOR WHO in the early Eighties. Matt Smith took a while to grow on me – and still hasn’t grown on my wife, who can’t stand him! He strikes me a lot like Sylvester McCoy’s Doctor – at first you just think he’s just an antic fool, only to slowly find out that’s his mask, and he’s really more of A Lonely God with only the most tenuous connection to humanity.

          I suppose people’s feelings about Tennant’s Doctor depends on your tolerance for his romantic and melancholic side – and if you ended up hating Rose after all the callbacks they did on her when she was supposedly gone from his side forever! (I would gotten around Rose and The Tenth Doctor being in love only Rose is Mortal by having it be that Rose was like Captain Jack after TARDIS/Rose “fixed” him. Taking the Heart of the TARDIS into Rose killed her immediately, only the Heart of the TARDIS brought her right back to life so she could never die either. But then, they couldn’t use The Doctor abandoning the newly-revived Jack because he was “wrong” somehow at the end of Series 1….)

          • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

             Besides, if Rose isn’t mortal any longer, then how do you get rid of her?  And the Doctor is mortal, just much longer-living. 

            • drdarke

              The same way they originally did in the series, @google-a370e63c84504acf2c560294762b86cb:disqus – by having her go someplace he can’t follow, supposedly ever.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=13953311 Missy Covington

        I *get* the Eccelston love (though Tennant is my personal fave). He had a gravitas that the other new doctors didn’t/don’t have.

        I think he gets a lot of fan hate because he said once that he wasn’t a Doctor Who fan before he was on it–which a lot of fans took to mean “I never liked this show and I don’t even like this show now except that it gives me a paycheck!” (which it didn’t).

      • http://profiles.google.com/padawansguide Maggie *

         I adore Eccelston and he’ll always be my Doctor.  Though I do like Tennant.  I like Smith too, but for some reason I don’t love the Ponds. I want to love them as much as I’ve loved every other new Who companion, but I just don’t.  Not sure why. I liked Oswin, but I’m not sure I liked Clara. She’s just a little bit too plucky in a practiced sort of way.  I dunno.

        • http://visceralresponse.com Dina dV

          I loved Amy and Rory in their first season but once everything became about the power and glory that is the most grating character ever created, River Freaking Song, I just couldn’t with them anymore.

          I still love that Rory was never impressed with the Doctor or the TARDIS and told the Doctor that he’s dangerous because his companions take unnecessary risks to impress him when they’re just human and can’t regenerate.  Rory was kind which despite the treacle this special is not really true of the Doctor, and that’s why I miss Rory.  But they’re storyline was a season too long.

          • stoprobbers

            “once everything became about the power and glory that is the most grating character ever created, River Freaking Song, I just couldn’t with them anymore.”

            Oh my god, PREACH. 

          • mike__tv

            Even the “Because he’s a nurse” induces eye rolls. 

        • http://twitter.com/peacebang Victoria Weinstein

          Clara is tiresomely plucky and perfect. I don’t know if I can tolerate her. 

          • http://cheekypinky.wordpress.com cheekypinky

            I want another companion who isn’t a Pretty and Rather Sexy Girl.

            I dug Donna for that reason.

      • LeBarron

        I’m with you, as well.  The Ninth Doctor will always be my Doctor.

      • stoprobbers

        Eccleston is my Doctor, because his season is the one that hooked me — and the one I watched in 12 straight hours, not even noticing that time was passing ’til it was over. It’s still not nearly enough — 13 measly episodes?!?! NOT FAIR — but I always liked that Tennant, in his darkest moments, seemed to tap into the same depth of pain and desperation that permeated Eccleston’s Doctor; the same primal, wild-eyed, deranged fear and fury that we saw in “Dalek” and the fights in “Fathers Day,” the same devotion and love we saw in “Bad Wolf”/”Parting of the Ways” or also “Father’s Day” (because, can we agree that “Father’s Day” is probably the single best episode of Doctor Who ever? Scary monsters, crazy paradox awesomeness, and then BUCKETS AND BUCKETS OF TEARS LIKE OH MY GOD). 

      • AnnPopovic

         Another vote for the sublime Christopher.

        That said, I’d be MORE than happy if this latest Dr. fell dead out of the sky and none other than Richard E. Grant took the Tardis for a spin for a few years. NOBODY. But NOBODY does MAD like Withnail!

      • http://korilian.livejournal.com/ korilian

        Every doctor is my doctor. I’ve always had a bit of an out of sight, out of mind mentality. The Ponds (or rather, Amy) I took a while to warm up to…

        • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

           I was really anti-Matt Smith because I loved Tennant and I need a rebound in between.  The Ponds were the entire reason I was able to warm up to him.

    • http://twitter.com/MajorBedhead MajorBedhead

      I loved this episode, so much more than the one from last Christmas. The one-liners were funny as hell and I loved the Sherlock reference. I like Clara (or whatever her name will be when the second half of the season starts up again) a lot and the only Pond I miss is Rory (and his dad).

      I do not like the new TARDIS and I really do not like the redone theme song. 

      • MilaXX

         I would so enjoy a Brian Williams & Willis (Noble?) ep.

        • http://twitter.com/MajorBedhead MajorBedhead

           That would be fantastic.

      • sherrietee

         I like the redone theme song better than hearing someone TALKING during the opening credits.

        • JosephLamour

           YYYYYYYYYES.

      • lovelyivy

         The worst part about the Pond saga is the fact that Mr. Williams will likely never meet his only grandchild or know what happened to his son and daughter-in-law.

      • http://cheekypinky.wordpress.com cheekypinky

        With you on the new TARDIS (also, what the hell? I thought the TARDIS regenerated with the Doctor!) and the theme song. Ick.

    • http://twitter.com/amndad amanda lynn

      “It’s smaller on the outside!”

      • tardisten

         “…that’s a first.”

    • Frank_821

      Strax was hilarious-especially that bit with the memory worm. I would love to see a spin off series with those three. Have any of you seen the prologue videos with them? They set the tone perfectly. I’m happy they will pop up again. hopefully much more often

      my favorite scene though was Lady Vastra interrogating Clara and only wanting 1 word replies

      • tardisten

         I absolutely loved all of Madam Vastra’s scenes – I hadn’t really thought much about the character before, but the writing really gave her a chance to shine here. I thought it was amazing that she and Jenny were the inspirations for Sherlock and Watson, and the entire one-word interrogation scene was acted beautifully.

        Even though I saw the “pond” answer coming (Amy Pond will become the new Rose Tyler — the anvil tossed around here and there over the next few seasons) I still got goosebumps when Clara said it.

        • MilaXX

          I hope Amy doesn’t because Rose 2.0.  I liked Amy well enough, but hated their farewell. I wish the unfilmed one had been ued instead. That bit about the Doctor going back to young Amelia irked more than that entire stupid farewell ep.

          • kfarrel3

             Wait, what unfilmed ending??

            • MilaXX

              as far as I know it made it past the sketch stage, but instead of the Doctor  going back to see young Amelia, it shows Brian getting a knock on the door and a old man who is his grandson delivers a letter from Amy & Rory. They lived a ful life in 193whatever, and adopted a son. I bet it’s still out there if you google. I know I may be a little too sentimental for some, but Amy & Rory’s leaving was never not going to be sentimental and make more sense than the Doctor going bak to young Amelia.

            • kfarrel3

               Oh, definitely. I never really understood why he did that. It makes no sense and pretty much wrecks her whole being-furious-at-him when he eventually does come back. That ending is much better.

            • lovelyivy

               I WISH they had gone with that ending. The way they left any information about Rory’s Dad out of their farewell really broke my heart. That ending would have been the one part of the Pond farewell that did not suck, since the whole thing was so stupid.

              The Weeping Angels can go away forever now, or at least until someone comes up with an idea that makes them actually cool again.

            • Frank_821

              google this BBC video on youtube 
              Doctor Who: P.S. – Series 7 2012 – BBC One

              it’s really quite beautiful and much more powerful than the filmed ending. ARTHUR Darvill narrates it

            • kfarrel3

               You mean, mean people; now I’m at work, ruined for the rest of the day. Thank you for the video!

            • http://twitter.com/vintagesewing Vtg Fashion Library

              OMG.  Why didn’t they film that?  It was so beautiful.

            • http://twitter.com/sassysmart Shane Martinez

              Because Arthur Weasley wasn’t available to do it.

    • Jangle57

      I was pleasantly surprised by this episode; I enjoyed this new ‘villian’, the snowmen!   Unlike you, David Tennant was one of my favorite doctors of all time (and I’ve seen them all, all the way back to Hartnell) and I found Matt Smith tough to warm up to.  In restrospect, I think it was a combination of the Ponds, or more specifically, with Amy  and the doctor’s relationship with her - and with episodes themselves being horribly convoluted.  I found this episode fairly straightforward and I found myself liking Clara a great deal as a companion.  I’m sure the doctor will now be off to find a modern day version of her, based on the previews of the next episode. In fact I quite liked Matt Smith’s doctor with Clara and am hopeful that we’re entering a Doctor Who era that I will find more enjoyable than the last pairing.

      • http://profiles.google.com/padawansguide Maggie *

         I agree totally about Eleven and the Ponds. And the convolution. The Ponds end made no sense and just annoyed me.

    • gabbilevy

      I really loved this episode, and I’m a thorough enough review-reader to know that some of the things that had me raising my eyebrows (new opening credits style, for one) are nods to older Doctor Who that I haven’t got around to watching yet. It’s the 50th and I would expect we’re going to see tons of “Great Intelligence”-like throwbacks to Doctors 1-7. I think Clara is marvelous, but then again, I was (again, BLASPHEMY!–”since when do the Daleks have concept of blasphemy!?”) never as much in love with the Ponds as everybody. 

      I hope the explanation for who the Girl Who Twice Died has the payoff as good as the mystery. Can’t it be April?!

    • tardisten

      I’m so glad to hear I’m not the only one who saw the new TARDIS interior and did a complete WTF. Mr. TT was telling me he thought it looked “kinda cool” but I was just sitting there with a dropped jaw trying to take it in. The only part of it I did like were the rotating circles of Gallifreyan symbols towards the top of the console (or as I like to call it, “the vwoosh-vwoosh part”).

      I loved the opening credits as a throwback to the older series – and I was squinting trying to figure out if there were photo-negative images hidden in the time warp (some of the shots almost looked like a distorted frame from an episode here and there). I was probably just looking for Easter eggs where none existed.

      At first we were kicking around the idea that Clara/Oswin is actually part of the Great Intelligence (that Original Recipe Barwench Clara became the template and the Great Intelligence used her as the image to mirror). When I did some Googling I had to throw that theory out, since the GI is part of 60s canon (and discovered how they tied in the lunchbox with the tube map to an episode from 40+ years ago – clever!). I’m definitely convinced that Clara/Oswin is either an unwitting construct of a Big Bad or is perhaps part of the Big Bad herself – as TLo pointed out, Oswin/Clara is almost TOO clever on a Doctor level — I don’t think any companions in New Who have started out quite this smart.

      I’ve seen theories that she’s Jenny (The Doctor’s Daughter) but that just squicks me out, what with the kissing and all. And speaking of — he’s a married man! I’m surprised he didn’t get a little indignant over that.

      I would watch “The Adventures of Doctor Who & Nurse Potato” all day long.

      • MilaXX

         One of my favorite things about Eleven is the repeated call backs to original Who.

        • tardisten

          I was SO leery of Matt Smith when they first cast him, thinking this will surely be the beginning of the end, if they’re going to take this character with a 45+ year history and make him a 20-year-old hipster — but I have completely come around on him. He dresses like a grandpa, and gives off cantankerous-1100-year-old-man vibes perfectly when the situation calls for it. I think he, more than Nine or Ten, reminds me the most of the older Doctors.

          • Lisa M. (ReVoir) Kramp

             Agreed. I’m one of the ‘oldsters’ here and Tom Baker was my first Doctor. I then went back and watched the first three, and to me, Matt’s portrayal is very reminiscent of both William Hartnell and Patrick Troughton (the first two Doctors).

          • watchmeboogie

            Wow, you just pulled my opinion of Smith out of my head and put it online! The whole thing. I love him (and was so skeptical), he reminds me so much of Hartnell and Davison at turns.

      • gabbilevy

        I’ve heard the new TARDIS is a callback to an older one, as well?

        Sorry, ETA: It may not have actually been used, but were design drawings?

        • tardisten

          We were pulling up some screenshots last night and I would agree that it’s a callback in that they seem to have simplified the interior quite a bit, and a lot of the older sets were very basic and uncomplicated…so I can see what you’re getting at. I think I have blinders on when it comes to this set design – something about this one just makes my eyes twitch and makes me long for one of the beautifully complicated sets from Nine/Ten/Eleven. I’m hoping it will grow on me over the season, especially once we get to see a bit more of it in action.

        • stoprobbers

          The older TARDISes also tended not to look as organic as the revival TARDIS did (Nine and Ten’s TARDIS, with the coral). I think this one kind of looks like a Eurodisco night club and while it’s not awful, I’m not hugely fond of it. It seems like another one of Moffat’s anvils. Moffat is the most anvilicious writer this show has ever had and I feel like that’s a HARD place to take considering its oft-campy history. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=13953311 Missy Covington

      One of the things that prevented us from ever truly embracing David Tennant’s run as The Doctor (,they wrote, inviting controversy and outrage to follow) was his version’s tendency to get awfully mopey and melodramatic. was that he was incredibly, distractingly adorable.

      There. Fixed that.

      • gabbilevy

        I’ve been re-watching and just got to David Tennant… le sigh.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Patrick-Cleary/1201575213 Patrick Cleary

      I’ve been waiting to forget about the Ponds since the beginning of the last season. They’re great characters, but the one story they kept telling (Love! Conquers! All!) got tedious by the end. Bring on the new companion, I say!!

      • MoHub

         Love Conquers All and—

        —Rory dies again.

        • JanieS

           I don’t know if you’ve seen this, but:

          “R is for Rory, who dies every day.”

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=13953311 Missy Covington

          And, also, “Does Amy actually love me or is she just talking about how much she loves The Doctor….again.” Ugh. The love triangle that never was–and yet never failed to be trudged out again at a moment’s notice.

        • drdarke

           Oh, my God!

          They killed Rory!

          You BASTARDS!

          • MoHub

             Yes, indeed1 It didn’t take long for me to start referring to Rory as “Kenny” and waiting for Kyle and Stan to make an appearance.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=720742723 Sarah Winningham

      I just loved watching Clara’s face, she reminds me of a very, very young Helena Bonham-Carter, circa Lady Jane and A Room With A View.

      • tardisten

         I couldn’t put my finger on who she reminds me of, but this is it exactly!

      • lundibleu

        Ooh, that’s true. since she was first cast she’s been reminding me of Christina Ricci, too. Appearances haven’t changed that…

        • Reneesance

           It’s that very round face and the dimples and big eyes.  She is an adorable sprite, almost too adorable, especially that one scene with the children.  I’m hoping for more sass less twinkle from the contemporary version.  Is April here yet?

    • MilaXX

       Oh I liked the TARDIS redesign and I like the tweaked opening credits as well. I view the Christmas episodes as filler, a bit of a holiday fairy tale to tide us over until the new eps air. Perhaps that why they never bother me, my expectations are lower. Love seeing Strax, Jenny & Vastra. I read that Moffs wanted to make DW darker, hopefully not too dark. I am curious about Clara/Oswin.  I want to know her connection to the Doctor but I don’t want to see her die repeatedly like Rory did. Overall I liked the episode and am eagerly anticipating the new episodes.

      • tardisten

        Did they ever say how exactly Strax was brought back? I just caught a line about “he gave his life for a friend of mine – and now he’s back!” I don’t remember him reviving during A Good Man Goes to War, but I haven’t watched it in several months so I might be misremembering.

        Did you see the little mini-eps (Children in Need, and one other 60-second short)? They show more of Vastra, Jenny, and Strax (including Madam Vastra explaining her species and relationship to a rather flummoxed Scotland Yard inspector).

    • Dhammadina

      Speaking of sentiment, did you all go to see Les Miserables on Christmas Day, as you mentioned you might? Should we go see it? I have never been to it and am not big on musicals (except your Monday ones) but I would go if you gave me reasons to do so. 

      • MilaXX

         I haven’t seen it though I probably will. What I have read are fairly mixed reviews and a few complaints about how long the movie is.

        • kfarrel3

           Saw it yesterday and really enjoyed it. They made a couple of tiny changes to the timeline (for reasons I really don’t get, but it still works) and honestly, I didn’t feel the time at all. Definitely worth it, I think.

        • tardisten

          Definitely very, very, long. All of us were doing the wiggle dance to the ladies’ room at the end because we didn’t want to miss a minute of the film. I will say that I got completely sucked in and didn’t realize how late it was when the movie let out. I could have done with about 10 fewer minutes of sewer scenes.

      • tardisten

        I saw it yesterday (after trying to remain fairly unspoiled for it – I knew who the major characters were but didn’t read anything about how they were staging it, any changes they’d make, etc)  and was reaching for the tisuses at the end. I know there are going to be a lot of nitpicks about the uber-emoting (Anne was REALLY going for her Oscar) and the voices not being as strong as a Broadway voice would be (Russell Crowe is taking a lot of flack – they had to lower Javert’s songs a couple of keys for him, and he played the character differently than I’ve seen on stage, but I found it an interesting change and greatly enjoyed him). I thought it was a beautiful adaptation. There were some changes to notes and lines, some songs shorter than I remember and one short song I think may have been something new (I don’t remember it from the stage version).

        If you’re a superfan and a purist then this may fall flat (although there is a pretty major cameo that I didn’t know was coming and it made me do the Shocked Pearl-Clutching Gasp), but I absolutely loved it and plan on seeing it again.

        • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

           They had to raise Maria’s songs for Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music, and no one still complains about that.

    • http://www.facebook.com/izzzyy Dixie Murphy Ross

      I would have loved to see Clara stay from her time period. Aside from all the “multiple deaths therefore I bet a die again and it won’t mean anything because this is the new plot device!” stuff, it just would have been nice to have a non-modern companion. Imagine the fun of seeing all of time and space – with someone from a different time, consistently (the only reason I even liked Snakes, I mean Dinosaurs, on a Plane is because of the two guest characters who were from different time periods).

    • http://twitter.com/BrerAndy Andy Morris

      I was a little bit disappointed that we have to have modern day Oswin as opposed to Clara. I had gotten myself excited over the idea of having a victorian-era companion, which I think would be great fun. Still, love the actress and the idea of the character. Snowmen weren’t really threatening and the ice-nanny was really naff.

      • Julian Betkowski

        I agree with you completely. I was really looking forward to a period companion, in the style of Old School Who, so Clara’s rebirth as a modern girl was pretty disappointing to me. 

        I’m also not looking forward to Moffat’s attempts to connect The Snowmen to Asylum of the Daleks. I expect things to get stupidly messy and histrionic. Emotion isn’t Moffat’s strength as a writer, so I don’t trust that this is going to work well. I would be sooooo much happier if Oswin Oswald were a family name, and that the Asylum of the Daleks is about a descendent of the new companion, rather than the companion herself, but I doubt that will be the case.

        We’re going to have to deal with Moffat juggling around the plot to fuse these characters together and it’s gonna get ugly…

    • http://twitter.com/dianasof Diana

      I think I’ve just soured on Doctor Who, past the point of no return. Why did they have to keep repeating “Doctor Who?” every ten minutes? I feel like they were just trying too hard to make clever or funny dialogue (and as somebody elsewhere pointed out) a large chunk of it was just expository dialogue which didn’t really allow me to get into the story. I liked Clara but I’m afraid that she’ll just end up filling what appears to be Moffatt’s default “plucky” female character mold (as in, she’s the new Amy, who was the new River Song, who was very similar to Sally Sparrow). However, I will keep watching if Vastra, Jenny and Nurse Potato show up more often.

      • FrayedMachine

        I am so glad that I’m not the only one. i love love love love love (d…?) Doctor Who beyond comprehension but the seasons with Amy and Rory spoiled that love so heinously. I’m quite tired of the rehashing of companions who are annoying beyond comprehension (GOD, I can’t believe what they did to River Song. I just… It just makes me froth at the mouth), and was not crazy at all about Oswin in the slightest in her introductory episode. She was basically an Amy X1000000000 and I just can’t deal with it. I haven’t seen the Christmas Special, though, but if she’s essentially the same, I don’t really know how I’ll respond.

      • drdarke

         I was okay with Amy and Rory, even if there was a bit too much of “Rory As the Eternal Redshirt” and it did feel like half the time the writers couldn’t decide if Amy just dragged Rory along because she was used to him, or if she really did love him.

        I even liked River more than most people seemed to – The Doctor (especially this Doctor!) needs someone who can, occasionally, slap him silly with just cause, because she understands him so well and shares more with him than anyone else. Though Moffat didn’t quite play it right, I felt, I liked the idea of raising The Doctor’s “Own Bespoke Psychopath” – only to have her fall in love with him, and he with her because who understands him better than a quasi-Timelady brought up to know him completely in order to kill him?

        I have to say, I’m really liking Madame Vastra, Jenny and Strax as a Victorian crime-fighting team – in some ways, more than The Doctor right now. If done right, that could be an awesome spinoff….

    • stoprobbers

      I feel like we watched two completely different episodes.

      I’m done with Moffat and his half-assed writing. I’m done with the incredibly trite characters that keep getting introduced — Clara is just another version of River Song and River Song is tired, tired, tired. And I’m especially stunned that after all those words devoted to your dislike of sentimentality, you then praised the episode for…what? Because this was more sentimental, histrionic, and utterly absurdly mopey than any episode Tennant filmed. At least his mopiness came with motivation (tell me, T.Lo, with a straight face, that the Ponds’ exit was even a fraction as traumatic of devastating as Rose’s was in “Doomsday,” and then give me one reason anyone should praise an episode like this in contrast to “The Runaway Bride,” which was not just hilarious and action-packed but filled with genuine emotion glimpsed largely in understated bursts and then tucked away into the adventure again); Eleven is like a teenager, careening from one end of the emotional spectrum to the other with no reason, rhyme, or consequence. 

      Clara has potential but I’m completely out of faith for Moffat’s ability to tap into it. And that you didn’t mind the utterly pointless, unresolved, and — god, there’s really no other word for it — completely half-assed “plot” of the Snowmen makes me seriously question what you were watching. This episode was utter crap, a portent for more utter crap in the future, and left me longing desperately for Russel T Davies, Eccleston’s rawness, Tennant’s bombast, and the good ol’ days when emotion and investment in Doctor Who were laid out in complex patterns over the course of seasons and built up into massive cathartic — and often terrifying — moments. This is shite. 

      • watchmeboogie

        I’m going to go with… taste is subjective.

        • stoprobbers

          Taste is subjective, but the sharp decline in quality since the end of the 6th season premiere (and what an egregious lack of payoff that encapsulates) is something that is objectively obvious and I think it calls seriously into question the work of television reviewers — from the We Do It For Fun types, like T.Lo to the professionals — that they refuse to acknowledge it. Even my most devoted Moffat fan friends are getting frustrated with the thin plotting, the lack of action or emotional payoff, and the myriad unearned moments Moffat seems to shoehorn in (both in emotion and in plot) to each episode for the last two seasons. When your fans are getting restless but you, as reviewer and critic, continue to justify the increasingly dissatisfying work ont he show there’s a pretty serious disconnect that needs to be addressed. Time for a new showrunner, STAT. 

          • http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/ Tom and Lorenzo

            “Taste is subjective,”

            Every word that follows demonstrates that you do not truly believe those three words.

            • stoprobbers

              As I said in my initial reply to your post, I feel like we watched two different episodes.

            • http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/ Tom and Lorenzo

              Yes, and then you followed that up by claiming that it “Calls seriously into question” the work of critics and reviewers who do not see the show in exactly the same “objectively obvious” way that you do.

              So you can say,”Taste is subjective,” but when you follow that up with “But everyone else is wrong,” it kind of negates the point.

            • stoprobbers

              That was directed more broadly at the whole of season 7, which has gotten the kind of praise I just do not understand. Outside of your review, most of the reviews of the Christmas special I’ve seen have been relatively mediocre, praising Clara and critiquing the non-plot that tried to pass itself off as plot in this episode. That part *should* be objective — if everyone else thinks the “plot” of the episode is half-assed and so low energy as to be entirely forgotten (I seriously don’t even remember how the Snowmen bit got resolved, mostly because despite being the title and villain of the episode, absolutely nothing happened with them and everything about them went absolutely nowhere; there was something about a family crying? And then a shot of a family not crying?) but I read your review praising it, I have to wonder what was playing on your tv screen. It certainly wasn’t playing on mine.

            • drdarke

               @stoprobbers:disqus – this word “objective”: I do not think it means – what I think you think it means….

              There is no “objective” good or bad in creativity – though there may be a broad consensus now, that’s all it is. Consensuses can and often do change over time, or in another setting – for instance, movies we now consider classics like THE WIZARD OF OZ, CITIZEN KANE, IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE and A CHRISTMAS STORY were critical and commercial failures when they first came out. Conversely, how many Academy Award Best Pictures of the Year do you still remember liking a decade or more later? (I remember one – SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, and I’m still not sure how the Hell that ended up as an Oscar winner!)

          • watchmeboogie

             “Time for a new showrunner, STAT.”

            Oh, agreed. Moffat’s strength is single stories and scary characters, not long-range storytelling or long-term character development. While he’s done some things right, the show as a whole has suffered in other ways. But it’s not like Davies was perfect, either.

            This particular episode was wonderful as a Christmas episode, imo the best of all of the Christmas specials so far. Moffat’s greater failings aren’t really the point.

      • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

         I found the Ponds’ exit worse than Doomsday, honestly.  (To be fair, I always found Rose a bit annoying) Break-ups happen, with fair regularity.  The Ponds, though… they were his family — and the first he’s known in a very long time. 

    • stoprobbers

      This was not supposed to be here. It was supposed to be a reply to a comment. But it did not become one. Sorry, folks!

    • http://twitter.com/TMamBo Therese Bohn

      I liked the new interior design of the TARDIS, and I really enjoyed this episode, especially when The Doctor cheered up.  Can’t wait for the new season! 

    • http://twitter.com/poptartsjen Pop Tarts Jen

      Strax, Jenny and Madame Vastra really made the episode! Especially Strax. Good Lord, is he funny!

      I liked the episode a lot. I don’t mind some sentimentality, and there was enough spunk to keep it from getting cloyingly sweet. And I’m VERY intrigued by Clara. She’s had an interesting introduction.

      I am ready for some good old-fashioned sci-fi fun, however … I definitely agree with you on that. I don’t mind a little moping, but you’re right, it gets blah after a while. I love Christopher Eccleston as the Doctor because he’s not as mopey, and I liked it when Donna was the companion because that had some of the most fun episodes – the two of them were a scream together. (I just try not to think about the end of Donna’s run.)

      • drdarke

        @twitter-174114725:disqus – Eccelston’s Doctor was actually more Walking Wounded than Tennant’s or Smith’s, but he played it as a PTSD sufferer rather than somebody who felt sad a lot. The quicksilver mood swings, the often irrational anger over stupid things (As Rose said to Jack when he first met The Doctor, “When he’s stressed he likes to insult species -

        cuts himself shaving, does half an hour on lifeforms he’s cleverer than”), the sudden violent behavior when he sees one of his triggers (“Dalek”) – it’s kind of surprising The Brig didn’t show up and mutter something like, “You know, we got group therapy now for that sort of thing….”

    • watchmeboogie

      Loved it too! You basically have the same perspective so I’ll leave it at that. Happy Xmas/New Year, dears.

    • AthenaJ

      I dunno guys, I’m having a tough time getting into Clara/Oswin’s character. I’ll add one more ‘P’ to your list: Plucky, Perky, Perfect, Pretty. There, all the boxes are checked. At least Amy had some mental issues due to being in a house with that rift/alien thing going on, her family gone, plus waiting for the Doctor all that time, and Rose and Martha were relateable and realistic, with Donna being the most relateable of them all (plus wickedly funny to boot). Flaws make a character interesting, and I feel like we’re not seeing any of Clara’s (if she has any). When a character is precious, beautiful, and oh-so-clever 100% of the time, it gets old – fast. Same with her as Oswin, though at least she got interesting in the end because she was a Dalek. So maybe Moffat will pull a surprise on us and Clara 2.0 (or is it 3.0 now?) will have a hidden identity/deep dark secret/turn into a potato woman? I will say though, Clara has more chemistry with the Doctor than River Song ever did, so there’s one point in her favor. Btw, is River going to come back and get ticked that her husband has shacked up with a ’4P’ companion?

    • mike__tv

      New Who has always induced eyerolls, Russell T Davis’ who induced many eye rolls. I think most people dislike this playing to children side of who, I know that when I was a kid I liked things that didn’t patronize me, which who is constantly doing. But still, When I thought about Christmas and what I was looking forward to, I thought of the return of Dr who! Because for all the eyerolling soppy moments, the show still manages to excite me.

      Also, Clara Oswin Oswald is tooo perfect, I suspect she’s too perfect by design,but you never know with Moffat. 

    • mike__tv

      Tennant always seemed like he was ACTING, which kind of annoyed me. 

    • mike__tv

      Agreed. Because the Dr loves the 21 century companion too much. 

    • mike__tv

      I’m really surprised by this point of view, which is shared by many. Russell T Davis is a pretty awful sci fi writer and most of his episodes were rubbish and way more sentimental than anything we’ve seen on Moffat’s who. I understand this Christmas episode is crap and that Moffat has certain issues, like his tendency to write the same characters. But Moffatt’s era has in my mind been much cooler than anything Russell T Davis ever did. Remember that Kyle Monogue episode, the constant cascade of “self-sacrificing” characters  all those unearned moments in RTD’s who…Maybe taste is subjective. Also Christmas episodes are always shit, always. 

    • http://phreddd.livejournal.com/ Fred V

      I was impressed.

    • BookishBren

      My household is a huge fan of Eccleston but we REALLY love Matt Smith as the Doctor. I didn’t mind Tennant, but my partner said his acting primarily consists of the same grimace/teeth gritting. Once I started noticing that, it ruined Tennant for me. Thanks a lot, honey.

      I really liked the Christmas episode (and was excited to see an actor in it from one of my fav English shows, Silent Witness). Amelia Pond was the first companion I have enjoyed since Rose Tyler. I was a little afraid the next companion wouldn’t be enjoyable for me but I think Clara holds a lot of promise.  

    • rach_fraser

      I wonder how river song would feel about the new companion and her and the doctors flirting/kissing… Will they just forget the doctor is meant to be married? 

    • stoprobbers

      That thing is a work of sheer genius. I almost fell off the couch at “R.”

    • Lonely_Assasin

      The Snowmen….by Steven Moffat. You know, as a contributing writer to the series, Steven Moffat was hands down the BEST thing ever to come along. The 4 stories he penned for seasons 1-4 remain solidly in the top 15 stories of over 250 DOCTOR WHO stories: BLINK being solidly ranked # 1.

      Alas, as series lead writer and director Moffat has dissaponted on so many levels. Quite apart from the overly (and needlessly) convoluted story arcs and ridiculous premises like Rory dying over and over like Kenny from South Park, Moffat committed the egregious sin of casting a pouty-faced companion (Amy) that rarely stood up to the Doctor and called his actions into question. And Karen Gillan couldn’t act for beans (the exception, of course, being her standout performance in THE GIRL WHO WAITED). Thank God that Arthur Darvill signed on full time: he can act circles around Smith and Gillan.

      And this business with saying “Doctor who?” (which was on full dispaly in THE SNOWMEN) has gone WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY overboard. It worked on November 23rd, 1963 when Ian Chesterson said “…Doctor Foreman” and the Doctor countered with “Eh? Doctor who? What’s he going on about?”.

      It worked when Rose said it in THE EMPTY CHILD “What was I supposed to tell him? Don’t you get sick of everyone calling you Doctor? Doctor who?” To which the Doctor says “900 years on, I’m coping!”

      But when Madame de Pompadour said it something strange started happening. Hearing the title of the show in the dialogue of the show began to ring false…and it started pushing the show in the wrong direction. True, it was slow at first, but now with “Doctor who?” being said nearly every other episode (and structuring season six around it “The question in plain view which must never be asked”), the show has fallen sickeningly into fan-wank territory.

      Quite honestly, I don’t see the purpose of dynamic dialogue anymore in Moffat’s shows.

      Everyone should just interact like this:

      “Doctor who?”

      “Oh yes, Doctor Who!”

      “Oh, but Doctor who Doctor who Doctor who. Doctor who Doctor who. Doctor Doctor Doctor who.”

      “Hmmm. Yes, I see your Doctor who. Could it be that Doctor who Doctor who Doctor who doctor who?”

      “Doctor who!! How dare you Doctor who the Doctor who?”

      “Well, I didn’t mean to Doctor who.”

      “Doctor who is the Doctor who….and Doctor who will never Doctor the Doctor who until you Doctor who the Doctor who!”

      “Oh my Doctor who! You’re absolutely Doctor who. How can I ever Doctor who myself?”

      “Fret not! I’m sure Doctor who will Doctor who the Doctor who. The Doctor who will Doctor the Doctor who’s and the universe will Doctor who again and the Doctor who’s can Doctor who in peace and harmony again.”

    • Lonely_Assasin

      As a contributing writer to the series, Steven Moffat was hands down the BEST thing ever to come along. The 4 stories he penned for seasons 1-4 remain solidly in the top 15 stories of over 250 DOCTOR WHO stories: BLINK being solidly ranked # 1.

      Alas, as series lead writer and director Moffat has dissaponted on so many levels. Quite apart from the overly (and needlessly) convoluted story arcs and ridiculous premises like Rory dying over and over like Kenny from South Park, Moffat committed the egregious sin of casting a pouty-faced companion (Amy) that rarely stood up to the Doctor and called his actions into question. And Karen Gillan couldn’t act for beans (the exception, of course, being her standout performance in THE GIRL WHO WAITED). Thank God that Arthur Darvill signed on full time: he can act circles around Smith and Gillan.

      And this business with saying “Doctor who?” (which was on full dispaly in THE SNOWMEN) has gone WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY overboard. It worked on November 23rd, 1963 when Ian Chesterson said “…Doctor Foreman” and the Doctor countered with “Eh? Doctor who? What’s he going on about?”.

      It worked when Rose said it in THE EMPTY CHILD “What was I supposed to tell him? Don’t you get sick of everyone calling you Doctor? Doctor who?” To which the Doctor says “900 years on, I’m coping!”

      But when Madame de Pompadour said it something strange started happening. Hearing the title of the show in the dialogue of the show began to ring false…and it started pushing the show in the wrong direction. True, it was slow at first, but now with “Doctor who?” being said nearly every other episode (and structuring season six around it “The question in plain view which must never be asked”), the show has fallen sickeningly into fan-wank territory.

      Quite honestly, I don’t see the purpose of dynamic dialogue anymore in Moffat’s shows.

      Everyone should just interact like this:

      “Doctor who?”

      “Oh yes, Doctor Who!”

      “Oh, but Doctor who Doctor who Doctor who. Doctor who Doctor who. Doctor Doctor Doctor who.”

      “Hmmm. Yes, I see your Doctor who. Could it be that Doctor who Doctor who Doctor who doctor who?”

      “Doctor who!! How dare you Doctor who the Doctor who?”

      “Well, I didn’t mean to Doctor who.”

      “Doctor who is the Doctor who….and Doctor who will never Doctor the Doctor who until you Doctor who the Doctor who!”

      “Oh my Doctor who! You’re absolutely Doctor who. How can I ever Doctor who myself?”

      “Fret not! I’m sure Doctor who will Doctor who the Doctor who. The Doctor who will Doctor the Doctor who’s and the universe will Doctor who again and the Doctor who’s can Doctor who in peace and harmony again.”

      • Joan Roseman

        What I don’t understand is how, with everyone constantly asking “doctor Who?” a whole movement, The Silence, was formed to make sure that that very question would never be asked.  Ooops!

    • JosephLamour

       I know right? Cheekbones.

    • eriksuperman

      This show is
      excellent; the Christmas special was great, and I loved the Victorian England
      theme.   I had NO idea it had been
      around since the 60′s, and can only assume its success stems from the diversity
      of the characters and settings.  I work late most nights at DISH, but have
      my DISH Hopper DVR set to record it all for me.  I set the PrimeTime
      Anytime feature to record all the primetime shows from the big four networks
      (for the wife), and still have the ability record two additional shows
      simultaneously.  I just hit ”record series” and it loads the right
      onto my DVR.   The time/space idea is captivating, and I love it
      never gets boring; can’t wait to watch next season!

    • http://twitter.com/Mel_BToast Mel B Toast

      There was no worse fairy tale trope than when, during Tennant’s run, the people of the world could turn the Doctor back into a real boy if they “just believed in him.”  (where the Master takes over the world) That was so painfully terrible that I’ve never been able to watch that episode again. And I normally love Tennant. :)

      I’m glad we’re past the days when the companion was a easily-replaced assistant, but it seems like they’ve swung too much in the other direction. Not every companion needs to be The Person That Changes The Doctor’s Life and he will never be the same without. It’s all very sweet at first, but after a few months, the constant mutual love-fest becomes grating. I think Rory was enjoyable because he was more conflicted about The Doctor, and mostly there for Amy.

      It’s hard to pull off, but I’d love to see an accidental companion again–one that doesn’t actually want to be there.

      I find Clara intriguing…but I found River intriguing at first. That’s no guarantee of longevity.

    • drdarke

      Think we were really watching a back-door pilot to THE CHRONICLES OF MADAME VASTRA & JENNY? Maybe they can team up with WAREHOUSE 13′s Helena G. Wells and – whatever Ianto was called and solve Alien/Supernatural Crime in Backlot Victorian England.

    • drdarke

      My biggest beef with the episode was the shrugging acceptance of a Lizard Woman From the Dawn of Time – and her Female Spouse – in Victorian England! Richard E. Grant’s villain didn’t even sneer something like “How forward-thinking of you both” when Madame Vastra said they were married – as if same-sex marriage was the most common thing in the world in Victorian England(!), when it’s not even completely legal in this day and age. Yes, I know the Victorians never treated lesbianism nearly as harshly as they did male homosexuality, but it certainly wasn’t accepted to the extent where a woman would openly call another woman her “wife” – except in very select circles.

      It bothers me not because I’m opposed to same-sex marriage – but because it seems a bit like antisemitic Holocaust Denial, or American Southerners claiming they didn’t start The U.S. Civil War so they could keep Blacks as slaves. I certainly don’t think Moffat’s doing it because he wants to deny homophobia was ever a threat to the lives and freedoms of gay people – I just don’t think he wants to deal with the historicity of bigotry, while having the the modern attitudes of stable same-sex relationships.

      Unfortunately, as fewer people remember just how casually homophobic/misogynistic/racist “normal” people were even in the fairly recent past, and even fewer give a crap about history, it ends up having a similar effect: It makes it easier for Fox News and other organs of Right-Wing Media to lie to people about why about giving gays and women “Special Rights”, by alleging they’ve  never needed specific laws to give them the same rights Straight While Males have.

      EDITED TO ADD: I would be open to alternate views on this topic – as I am a Straight White Male myself, and might be overthinking the plumbing.

      • http://profiles.google.com/shannonlstewart Shannon Stewart

        But he talked about them being “companions” first — implying to me that they normally did hide it, just like Vastra would normally hide her face.

        • drdarke

          I think I see what you mean, @google-a370e63c84504acf2c560294762b86cb:disqus – that they can be that open around Dr. Simeon because, well, he’s The Enemy, and already knows most everything that would be scandalous (Madame Vastra’s a Silurian, she and Jenny are lovers, and their butler’s a Sontarran whose answer to every problem is “Kill It!”).

          I might have liked it better if Captain Latimer’s family and staff was a bit more shocked and horrified by having a Lizard-Woman From the Dawn of Time – and her wife! – in their house. What would have been hilarious is if they just accepted Strax after an initial start at his appearance – yes, he’s a bullet-headed clearly-violent alien being, but at least he’s not a Lesbian Lizard flaunting her alternative sexuality in front of the children!

      • Joan Roseman

        But Who, at least in the new incarnation, has pretty much always dropped in same-sex couples into the mix.  Off the top of my head I can count off the techs without names in “A Good Man Goes to War,” Vashta and Jenny, a couple on the doomed space liner Amy and Rory honeymooned on and others.  And the only time I recall a mention of a problem was with the former Nixon-era FBI man who was pressed back into service to deal with the Doctor and the Silence.  He had lost his job because he wanted to marry.  A guy.  And even he got his wish as his price for returning.

        • drdarke

          @JoanRoseman:disqus – and that’s great most of the time, since many shows are set in the future. I’m fine with fictional same-sex couples married in a future where same-sex marriage is posited as legal (as it’s increasingly becoming). I’m fine with fictional same-sex married couples in the present from places where it’s legal for them to get married. I’m fine with fictional same-sex couples in the past – if they’re not married, because until recently same-sex marriage was illegal everywhere on Earth, or if (being DOCTOR WHO) they got married someplace where it was legal (a line about Silurian Churches not being hung up on who you marry might have been a nice zinger).

          My issue is, in an episode at least partially about the hypocritical “morality” of Victorian England, including the anachronism of a same-sex married couple. At that point in time it was not only illegal, but calling your same-sex partner your “spouse” in public was a good way to draw unwelcome official attention to yourself! We are talking a country that from the late Victorian Era to a generation later imprisoned and in some cases even tortured women for the high crime of publicly protesting for their right to vote, after all…

          And yeah – Mark Sheppard’s FBI Agent telling Nixon he wanted to marry another man in 1969, almost exactly a month after the Stonewall Riots first brought the idea of “gay rights” to public attention, really bugged me as well.

    • BitterOldQueen

      My eyes rolled out of my head, across the floor, and under the couch when the rain was pronounced “salty” and tear-ish. Good lord. But then, it’s a Very Christmas Special and one expects that sort of horror. Anyway, any Dr Who episode that lacks all Ponds and Rivers is good in my book (in small doses, the Amy, Rorey, and River folks were perfectly tolerable, but last season became such a total wallow in their general wonderfulness and importance that I was glad, yes glad, to see them dead and time-buried. As I was over and over and over again with the initially OK but ultimately insufferably over-used and immortal Rose Tyler.) And stop with the hating on my David T, who was a fine Doctor who just got swept away in some over-inflated writeryishness there toward the end. This show was cute, and often funny, and generally set up an interesting new companion. What more can one ask, really, of one’s Christmas pudding?

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_F73LIJ3SJGI5AJQMXMWXCKILHI Pamela

      David Tennant rules.  He & Christopher Eccleston were the most talented actors to take on the Doctor.  I like Matt but the others were it for me.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=739196218 Leah Burns

      See, I’m fairly neutral about Clara right now. She seems too much like Amy. All quirky and sexy and forceful and with a mystery (the hole thingy; this reincarnation thing). Most of the other New Who companions have been kind of different from each other. Martha was more intelligent and less boisterous than Rose, Donna was very unique, Amy wasn’t that much like Rose and Rory was obviously a guy.  But Clara… not so much.