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amy pond + character development



Memory of a Memory is such a good episode. Not even just because of the ending (where everyone joins in beating Marceline’s
awful ex Ash up) although that’s a reeeeally satisfying scene.

But my FAVOURITE THING about Memory of a Memory
is the really important lesson contained therein. Marceline doesn’t
decide to beat Ash up straight away, you see. She spends a fair amount
of time with him, because he seemed so nice (to the audience as well) at
first. And there’s a scene of him being the perfect boyfriend to her,
magic-ing up some flowers that say “I love you!” and so on.

But then there’s lines like the above, where you can see how Marceline –
an incredibly powerful vampire chick who can shapeshift into a monster
whenever she feels like it – is completely under the thumb of this guy.
Who is actually an abusive misogynistic arsehole who sells Marcy’s most
treasured possession and then wipes her memory of the resulting breakup.
Marceline, daughter of the Nightosphere, survivor of the Mushroom War,
ageless and mischievous vampire queen, acts totally out of character around Ash-

-and I think that’s a really good decision on the part of the writers? Because this episode showed that anyone
can fall into an abusive relationship. It’s not a thing
that ‘tough/strong/badass’ women are immune to, nor is it a character
flaw. And it’s not a character flaw if you don’t instantly twig onto
what’s happening, either. Finn and Jake clearly don’t think so at any point
during the episode and neither should the audience, neither should
anyone. It’s such a good lesson for kids to learn and it was executed so


With all the talk recently about making fandoms safe for kids –

I think a lot of people tend to forget that in Britain (its country of origin), Doctor Who is still widely considered a children’s show. A children’s show that adults can and do enjoy as well, but still mostly a children’s show. In most bookstores in the front of the kid’s section you can find Doctor Who activity books and sticker books and SO MANY TOYS. TOYS EVERYWHERE. It has its own children’s magazine, too:


Doctor Who Adventures loves Martha. That scan’s from 2007 but it still loves her! And all the other companions! Hooray!

Anyway, audiences weigh in frequently as to whether Doctor Who’s presence on the BBC infantilises British TV in general, about whether Vastra and Jenny’s relationship is appropriate for a family show (it is), about whether it’s too scary for children, etc. The showrunners too consider children the primary audience, and not always with good results (hence Russell T Davies’ ‘there can’t be a female Doctor because then fathers would think they have to explain sex changes to their children’ comment; but I think fandom can do better than that.) Basically, people assume Who and, say, Sherlock or Supernatural or even the MCU share a target audience, but they really, really don’t. People criticise no end the child-centric episodes of Doctor Who – Fear Her, Nightmare In Silver, In The Forest of the Night – but there is very good reason why they’re there. Because children are and always have been the target audience of the show.

What I’m trying to get at here is that children participate in Doctor Who fandom a lot and they should because it’s for them. Little girls do too! And those little girls take it just as seriously as we all do.

Please nurture their interest in the companions as role models, since despite what showrunners/popular commentators will have you believe, the companions are (not unlike the Disney princesses, actually, whom little girls get equally derided for admiring) much much more than any beauty or special abilities they possess. Young girls gravitating towards them is a good thing. I mean, pretty much all the magazines and companion-themed merchandise aimed towards children takes care to emphasize that courage and kindness are the qualities you should be aiming for? Amy’s admired for her bravery, Martha for her smarts, Clara for her compassion etc. So yeah!

There is SO MUCH to criticize about Doctor Who, as there is for any show, but I really want the fandom to remember/know in the first place who the show is actually aimed at? These guys! And these guys! Be kind to them. Please. When you google ‘doctor who fans’ Google autocompletes it to ‘doctor who fans are the worst’ and ‘doctor who fans are annoying’ and that’s going to totally, totally suck for the eight-year-olds looking up their favourite show for the first time.



Last month I wrote an Adventure Time fanfic in which Simon, horrorstruck by the person the crown is turning him into, is contemplating suicide when Death himself turns up and talks him out of it. Okay, so far, so kindasorta bleak. But:

That line up there is said from Death to Simon, right at the end, when Simon asks what Death itself could possibly be afraid of. And something about it just got to me. I mean, damn do I relate to Simon – everything that happened to him is a pretty heavy metaphor for mental illness and I’ve got that in spades. And the idea that one’s devotion to willpower and survival could make Death afraid of you was apparently an idea I needed to hear. And also apparently had in my brain somewhere.

So me and my boyfriend made this – he did the drawing for me and I scrawled the text on. I’m keepin’ it around, and on here, just as a reminder…