Companion choler: Rose and River   Leave a comment

On the Rose v River debate, which I will not grace with any sort of link:

Some characters are real humans faced with extraordinary situations, who find within themselves the courage or wisdom or insert-trait-here to do what it takes and save the day. This is Rose: under-sevens gymnastics, bronze medal. She has her own past, her own future; she is independent, whole and complete. (This is also Martha and Sarah Jane and Jo, and probably most of the classic companions.)

Some characters are pawns of fate, doomed from birth to follow some predestined path, or struggle to leave it. Entwined with the Doctor in some way, they lack self and independence. River was interesting when she was the ordinary woman of extraordinary intelligence and confidence who in some unknown time captured the Doctor’s hearts. When she became entwined with him from birth, she lost most of what made her special. She became a reflection of him, rather than anything of herself. (Along with early Clara and late Amy, and probably some Turlough.)

People seem to feel strongly about this, some so strongly that they feel preferring one means despising the other. This is, in a word, stupid. They both have their strengths. I like both in different ways. But I have to concede a preference for a whole, real, flawed, independent human. I adore Rose wholeheartedly, every moment; while River captured my heart in the Library, she lost her hold on me when she became an instrument instead of a person.

Posted September 8, 2014 by Elisabeth in Companions

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