Monday, 21 July 2008

The Most Noble Donna of them all

It's interesting but, despite all the evidence to the contrary (photographs, written interviews and so on - you know, actual hard evidence) I still wasn't entirely sure whether or not the Doctor was actually going to regenerate in the opening moments of Journey's End.

That said, I wasn't exactly surprised when David Tennant emerged from orange glow looking as healthy as ever. And i was somewhat releived when he did. I don't think I'm quite ready to see the Tenth Doctor leave just yet. Besides, this wasn't the right story for David Tennant's swansong.

Yes the story was big, yes it was epic and, normally that would be ideal for a Doctor's last story. But in this case it would be wrong because it wasn't the Doctor's story. It wasn't even Rose's despite all the build up to her return. It was Donna's.

It's quite something when, amidst all the Daleks, the multitude of returning characters, the equally-returning Davros and the multiple Doctors, Catherine Tate still manages to steal the show. Although she gives a great performance as TheDoctor/Donna (with a great impersonation of David Tennant) it's the final few scenes that really stand out for me.

It's easy to forget how far the character has come since she first arrived on board the TARDIS in her wedding dress. Here, we're given a reminder of the Donna of hold and it's genuinely to see her return to the person she was. As her grandfather says: "She was better!" Indeed she was and that really sums up the episode and the series in a nutshell. What the series has shown since the very beginning is that the Doctor changes people. He doesn't turn them into weapons, as Davros would have it. He changes their outlook on life and helps people to see the bigger picture. And in turn he learns from them and improves himself. As the First Doctor once put it: "As we learn about each other so we learn about ourselves."

So, in short, it was a great shame to see Donna leave in the way that she did. It will be interesting to see if her replacement can match up to her.

1 comment:

Nadia said...

Donna's development as the Doctor's companion was completely unforeseen when she first arrived. And like her, I didn't think she was special - likeable, yes, and such fun to watch, but seldom more than a temp from Chiswick, as she liked to point out herself.

It was only in the finale that, suddenly, Donna became perhaps the best companion of them all, and the most tragic. She even surpasses Rose, in my opinion - not just in the last few episodes, but on the whole.

I am very happy about that even though it is strange to see that Rose is no longer as important as she used to be. I am happy with the development because Donna is thoroughly likeable after The Runaway Bride. Maybe it is because she is ordinary like we all are. Rose, in comparison, was too young for me to identify with, for instance.

It is so sad to see Donna go, especially in the way she does. It is the most tragic of ends you can expect - everybody else knows what you have done and how good you were, but they mustn't tell you and a part of who you are will always be a secret.

So it was a great finale and I am glad that we have the 10th Doctor back. Imagine losing both Donna and the Doctor!

One mystery remains though - if a human/Time Lord combo can never exist, which is why Donna had to forget, how come the other Doctor can stay?