The Girl Who Died
The Doctor: I can do… anything. There’s nothing I can’t do. Nothing. But I’m not supposed to.
Doctor Who Season: S35 (Ep5).
Story Number: 256.
The Doctor likes to talk…
It’s a useful skill, being able to talk yourself out of tricky situations. A skill that Clara has become quite adept at – so when she finds herself separated from the Doctor on board an alien ship that’s already liquidated a small horde of Vikings, she’s able to once again prove she’s learnt much from the Doctor.
On board with her though, is her own “companion”, the girl of the title, (though like episode one of this season you can read the title as being about more than one Doctor Who character – the mortality of Clara being seemingly foreshadowed).
Instead of the Mire leaving the planet, Clara’s companion – young Viking Ashildr – declares war on the aliens. So the stage is set for more talking.
For an episode supposedly featuring “Vikings versus Aliens” there is remarkably little fighting – but then the episode is the more dramatic for that, as the Twelfth Doctor talks over with Clara, (as he tends to) what it means to be the Doctor.
The Doctor is a story he tells himself – one that he tries to live up to day by day, (the punchline for The Name of the Doctor, the philosophical heart of The Day of the Doctor), one that had the Twelfth Doctor trying to understand the complexities of it last season.