History Headscratchers / DoctorWho

1st Sep '16 4:12:41 AM cillianflood
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** Stories set in the near future with British actors are probably meant to be British characters. There's nothing surprising or strange about that. Britain is a major world power, this is even more true in the Doctor Who universe where they had a space program and hosted world peace negotiations in the early 80s (or perhaps the 70s, look up the UNIT dating controversy if you don't know about it). So to put it simply, when Earth is established as a major galactic force in the future your dealing with future humans speaking a future language and are probably members of future countries within a united Earth (one exception to this is probably The Beast Below). When dealing with the near future you're probably dealing with British characters on some remote base somewhere speaking pretty normal English, unless otherwise specified (see Dalek). Same when dealing with stories set in the present or near present day (technically every story in the most recent seasons have been in the near future given the liberal time skips in the first half of Matt Smith's last season). Any story set in the past more than two centuries and you're probably dealing with people not speaking modern English and frequently not even being from England. There's nothing strange or unexpected about this. If a character is likely to be British then they probably are. If a character is unlikely to be British then they probably aren't regardless how they speak.
30th Aug '16 2:21:30 AM CrypticMirror
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*** There is clearly only one answer. At some point America screws up so badly it decides that it would be best if it just re-places itself back under British care and governance and its people, learn how to speak with proper accents.
29th Aug '16 11:20:37 PM Tuomas
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*** If it doesn't bother translating English, then everyone who we hear speaking with a British accent really does have one... Which was the original headscratcher: why are so many people in the future British?
29th Aug '16 4:34:57 PM HowlingSnail
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*** Because it doesn't bother translating the English for us. Van Statten is speaking English, so it leaves him alone.
28th Aug '16 5:31:44 AM Tuomas
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*** But there are also many episodes that only take place only a few decades in the future, such as ''The Waters of Mars'' or ''Kill the Moon'', where the English spoken wouldn't have changed so much the viewers couldn't understand it, so the TranslationConvention shouldn't be in effect any more than in the episodes set in the near past, and yet everyone in the near future is still speaking in British accents.

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*** But there are also many episodes that only take place only a few decades in the future, such as ''The Waters of Mars'' or ''Kill the Moon'', where the English spoken wouldn't have changed so much the viewers couldn't understand it, so the TranslationConvention shouldn't be in effect any more than it is in the episodes set in the near past, and yet everyone in the near future is still speaking in with a British accents.accent. Also, if it's the Translation Convention that gives everyone a British accent for British viewers' benefit, why do American accents still occasional pop up, such as with Henry van Statten in ''Dalek''?
28th Aug '16 5:24:38 AM Tuomas
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*** But there are also many episodes that only take place only a few decades in the future, such as ''The Waters of Mars'' or ''Kill the Moon'', where the English spoken wouldn't have changed so much the viewers couldn't understand it, so the TranslationConvention shouldn't be in effect any more than in the episodes set in the near past, and yet everyone in the near future is still speaking in British accents.
23rd Aug '16 10:25:17 AM cillianflood
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* It's establish as early as the third Doctor's tenure (perhaps earlier) that the Doctor is a master hypnotist, just like the Master. Yet it's a power he very rarely uses. Why? Sure suppressing someone's free will for a little while is a bit rude but it's pretty convenient non violent way of not getting yourself murdered. Sure it might not work on everyone as "strong willed individuals" exist, but its still worth a try when your in a tight spot. And I can think of exactly one tight spot where the Doctor did in fact try to hypnotize someone, in the giant swamp squid episode during the key of time season (4th Doctor). Of course from a narrative perspective it's either too easy a fix for most situations and having it try and fail constantly would not be entertaining, but I can't think of any in universe explanation as to why he never gives it a try beyond that one time.

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* It's establish as early as the third Doctor's tenure (perhaps earlier) that the Doctor is a master hypnotist, just like the Master. Yet it's a power he very rarely uses. Why? Sure suppressing someone's free will for a little while is a bit rude but it's pretty convenient non violent way of not getting yourself murdered. Sure it might not work on everyone as "strong willed individuals" exist, but its still worth a try when your in a tight spot. And that type of hypnotism is within his abilities as I can think of exactly one tight spot where the Doctor did in fact try to hypnotize someone, in the giant swamp squid episode during the key of time season (4th Doctor). Of course from a narrative perspective it's either too easy a fix for most situations and having it try and fail constantly would not be entertaining, but I can't think of any in universe explanation as to why he never gives it a try beyond that one time.
23rd Aug '16 10:15:11 AM cillianflood
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*** What language do you expect the people to talk in the scenes before the Tardis shows up? Because they're almost certainly not speaking English as we recognise it in any story set more than 500 years in the future. TranslationConvention is a trope and it's in effect for the audience with or without the Tardis. In universe the people are no more speaking English in the future than they are in Ancient Rome.


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[[folder: Why doesn't the Doctor try to hypnotize his enemies?]]
*It's establish as early as the third Doctor's tenure (perhaps earlier) that the Doctor is a master hypnotist, just like the Master. Yet it's a power he very rarely uses. Why? Sure suppressing someone's free will for a little while is a bit rude but it's pretty convenient non violent way of not getting yourself murdered. Sure it might not work on everyone as "strong willed individuals" exist, but its still worth a try when your in a tight spot. And I can think of exactly one tight spot where the Doctor did in fact try to hypnotize someone, in the giant swamp squid episode during the key of time season (4th Doctor). Of course from a narrative perspective it's either too easy a fix for most situations and having it try and fail constantly would not be entertaining, but I can't think of any in universe explanation as to why he never gives it a try beyond that one time.
[[/folder]]
18th Jul '16 5:36:35 AM DoctorNemesis
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** I'd suggest that, so far as we know, it's possibly more a form of domestication rather than slavery. Similarly to the relationship humans have with dogs, horses and other working animals; those are, after all, also species in their own right, but they've been bred and developed over time to have a symbiotic and more-or-less mutually satisfying relationship with humans. If nothing else, since the TARDIS seems (again, so far as we can tell) perfectly happy to bumble around with the Doctor, and arguably has more control over the situation than he does (it's pretty heavily implied that the TARDIS more frequently decides where the Doctor goes rather than the other way around), 'slavery' seems a questionable way to describe the situation.



** Same way someone can use a horse to pull a cart or ride it. A horse can go wherever it wants if it really wants to, but if it and the human directing it have both been well-trained, the horse is sufficiently tamed and under control, and a bond of trust has been established between the two, then the human can direct the horse to go where they want it to go. The TARDIS in this case is the horse, the Time Lord(s) controlling it are the human, and presumably the TARDIS console acts as the 'reins' by giving the Time Lord the medium to direct the TARDIS.

[[folder: Reality is Doomed]]
* In "The Stolen Earth" and "Journey's End", Davros tries to destroy reality and fails. BUT episodes like "Doomsday" make it clear that every possible outcome generates another universe where the outcome was different. So if Davros failed in the "main" universe, doesn't that mean there's now another universe where he succeeded? Doesn't the idea that every outcome generates a new universe guarantee that someone will try to destroy all reality and succeed? Doesn't that mean reality is doomed and not even the Doctor can do something about it?



[[folder: Reality is Doomed]]
* In "The Stolen Earth" and "Journey's End", Davros tries to destroy reality and fails. BUT episodes like "Doomsday" make it clear that every possible outcome generates another universe where the outcome was different. So if Davros failed in the "main" universe, doesn't that mean there's now another universe where he succeeded? Doesn't the idea that every outcome generates a new universe guarantee that someone will try to destroy all reality and succeed? Doesn't that mean reality is doomed and not even the Doctor can do something about it?
[[/folder]]


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** It's perhaps fair to say that a lot of these fans -- and, to a degree, this question itself -- might be suffering from RonTheDeathEater syndrome where the Doctor is concerned. It would be a stretch to describe the Doctor as perfect, and his actions might sometimes have potentially harmful consequences. But that's true of everyone without exception (it's just on a slightly larger scale for the Doctor), and it's overly-reductive to focus on the Doctor's flaws, mistakes and problems as if that's all there is to him. The fact that he's not a paragon of untouchable and unquestioned virtue who has never set a foot wrong doesn't mean the universe would be better off without him and that he should kill himself as a baby (BTW ''seriously''?); it just means that knowing what the right thing to do in a given situation isn't always easy to know, even for the Doctor. Whatever else you say about him, the Doctor is someone who tries his best to do the right thing, who stands up for those who can't stand up for themselves, who tries to fight oppression and injustice wherever he finds it, and tries to make people's lives better. The universe arguably needs more of that type of person, not less.
17th Jul '16 6:30:38 AM Morgenthaler
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* Davros has been established as a genius at genetic engineering(and an OmnicidalManiac), who managed to create one of the most feared races in the universe. In that case, when he was designing the Daleks, why did he not encode their DNA so that "[[AbsoluteXenophobe It is your destiny and purpose to destroy all non-Daleks.]] [[GenreSavvy Your creator, Davros, is the exception.]] [[DangerouslyGenreSavvy He is your commander and leader.]]" Yeah, [[ItsAllAboutMe he's arrogant,]] but not stupid. What gives?

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* Davros has been established as a genius at genetic engineering(and an OmnicidalManiac), who managed to create one of the most feared races in the universe. In that case, when he was designing the Daleks, why did he not encode their DNA so that "[[AbsoluteXenophobe It is your destiny and purpose to destroy all non-Daleks.]] [[GenreSavvy Your creator, Davros, is the exception.]] [[DangerouslyGenreSavvy exception. He is your commander and leader.]]" " Yeah, [[ItsAllAboutMe he's arrogant,]] but not stupid. What gives?
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