What Happens Next: A Gallimaufry

Foz Meadows is a bipedal cismammal with delusions of immortality. Also, she writes fantasy novels.

Anonymous asked: Just letting you know that in your post about the latest DW episode you made a point about the Daleks being destroyed in the Time War--well that happened before Nine, and they've been around since, so why is it suddenly bad in that episode? The Daleks will never go away, they keep slipping away before the Doctor can actually kill all of them

I’ve had a few cranky comments/reblogs about this point: the problem isn’t with the Daleks being back, per se, but with the fact that nobody in the show comments on it or talks about where they’ve come from: we never get even the vaguest explanation for how anything in the episode works. I mean, every Dalek appearance from 2005 onwards has necessarily involved exposition about how this particular ship or coterie escaped the Time War, followed by the Doctor fretting about the damage even one Dalek could do to the universe - but here, neither of those things happen, with the result that the characters are effectively taking the presence of so many Daleks for granted, as though they don’t just escape at the end and leave the universe’s worst killing machines to go about their business.

Even if you want to argue that the Dalek race came back forever in Victory of the Daleks - which would be an implied outcome, rather than an established one - that still doesn’t gel with how there are so many of them, why they’re organised into a parliament of all things, or why, most saliently of all, they’re all the 2005 bronze Daleks instead of the colour-coded Ikea ones that were meant to supercede them, and who were apparently so superior that the old, bronze Daleks all destroyed themselves. It doesn’t explain why they’re using human puppets who retain human memories of their old lives - which would seem to be absolutely anathema to Daleks, given the emotion involved - or why this is even necessary as a way to capture the Doctor, Amy and Rory. If Skaro was brought back in canon as part of a video game, fine, but that’s a completely different narrative medium to TV: you can’t just expect the rest of the audience to know about it, and letting something that big just stand without explanation is incredibly lazy, when all you’d need is a single line of dialogue to situate it as true. 

The point being: I have no issue with the Daleks being back, or the fact that they keep surviving despite everything the Doctor does to destroy them. The problem is specifically with the fact that Moffat has ignored his own canon and made a whole lot of changes to the continuity that are seemingly contradictions - or which at best are unusual enough to merit comment from the characters - for which he’s provided absolutely zero explanation. That’s the issue: that the audience is meant to take all his changes on faith, even when they fly in the face of everything we’re meant to know about the series. It’s bad writing, and disrespectful to a series which is much, much bigger than him.

  1. fozmeadows posted this