|Posted on September 8, 2011 at 8:50 PM|
First of all, I want my bias of the Doctor Who series to be obvious. It is my beleif that Doctor Who is the most brilliant series that has ever been written, whereas most sci-fi series lose the warmth and heart of other genres beneath cold technology the Doctor time and again dazzles you with its complete genuineness and compassion. The stories are so well tied together that you can go back sometimes several seasons and notice things that foreshadowed maor plot developments later in the series. To evidence this I've included quotes from one of my favourite non-storyarc episodes, Vincent and the Doctor. In which the Doctor travels back in time to Provence with his companion Amy Pond (also one of my favourite companions to date) and enters the life of Vincent Van Gogh.
Upon the killing of the episode's monster the Vincent takes the Doctor and Amy into the middle of a field at night to show them how he sees the world.
VINCENT- Look at the sky! It's not dark and black without character; the black is, in fact, deep blue. And over there; lighter blue and blowing through the blues and blackness the winds, swirling through the air; and then shining, burning, bursting through; the stars!
[The sky gradually transforms into Vincent's painting Starry Night]
VINCENT- And you see how they roar their light! Everywhere we look, the complex magic of nature blazes before our eyes!
One of my Favourites-The Doctor and Amy take Vincent to the museum (where the show started) and take him to the gallery where his paintings are showcased to the world.
DOCTOR- to the museum curator knowing Van Gogh is listening- Between you and me, where do you think Van Gogh rates in the history of art?
CURATOR- Well... um... big question, but, to me Van Gogh is the finest painter of them all. Certainly the most popular, great painter of all time. The most beloved, his command of colour the most magnificent. He transformed the pain of his tormented life into ecstatic beauty. Pain is easy to portray, but to use your passion and pain to portray the ecstasy and joy and magnificence of our world, no one had ever done it before. Perhaps no one ever will again. To my mind, that strange, wild man who roamed the fields of Provence was not only the world's greatest artist, but also one of the greatest men who ever lived.
NOW, if you are up to snuff on your art history you know this is a big deal. For a genius of Van Gogh's calibur to know the impact of his works on the modern world within the stretch of his lifetime. You would think it would have changed his life, however when they come back after returning Vincent to his own time they find no new paintings have been added, Vincent still commited suicide. The Doctor explains...
AMY- We didn't make a difference at all.
DOCTOR- I wouldn't say that. The way I see it, every life is a pile of good and bad things.
DOCTOR- The good things don't always soften the bad things, but vice-versa the bad things don't neccessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant. And I think we definately added to [Vincent's] pile of good things.