Saturday, June 1, 2013

Letter to Clara

Dear Clara,
I could start this letter with compliments about your courage on Akhaten or at Trenzalore, but that’s not why I’m writing this letter. There’s one simple fact I’m struggling against when I try to like you.
You are not a Pond.
Now, this may not mean anything to you. But let me repeat it again. You are not a Pond. You are not a River, or a stream, or even a puddle.  You are Clara “Oswin” Oswald, Souffle Girl, not possible, a wonderful friend to the Doctor, but you are not a Pond. 
I’ve talked with other friends about your good qualities, your loyalty, your ability to manage “Doctor life” and “real life” at the same time, your willingness to take charge of a situation and trust the Doctor. But I’m not warming to you like I did to the other companions, and I’m not sure why.
They were my first, you know. The first companions I ever met, and I’m slow to make friends and unwilling to accept loss. Maybe if the wait hadn’t been so long…if I’d had more stories with you…but I feel I never knew you, nor why you made the sacrifice you did at Trenzalore. I can come up with versions in my head, stories that make me understand you better, but that’s only a shadow. 
And with this new long will you travel with him? Will I ever really know you?
I’m sorry.


  1. I'm not warming much to Clara either, and I'm not sure why. I rewatched some Nine episodes recently and appreciated Rose's development quite a bit, but for a writer who claims that Doctor Who is about the companions, not the Doctor, Steven Moffat hasn't done much development with Clara. She doesn't have any endearing characteristic, just a defining one: impossible.

    Donna was brash, Rose was a love interest, Martha was smart, Rory and Amy were the two who waited. Rose cared about the Doctor, so we cared about her. Martha, well, Martha's more like Clara in my opinion, but somewhat more endearing. Donna was loud and we loved her. Rory waited for two thousand years because of love, Amy gave up Rory because she couldn't have children - these companions have characteristics.

    But Clara, Clara is just impossible, a neutral characteristic. Clara has the ingredients for a good character, but she's basically stayed in stasis since Asylum.

    If we're lucky, that'll change come November. Who knows?

    1. I've had a few conversations with Clara fans, and one thing that came up was that she's more "subtle" than the previous companions. I can see how some people might argue that, but I like larger than life characters in my scifi.

    2. True, but even "subtle" characters evolve. They change. So far, Clara hasn't.

    3. Well, that's more the difference between static/dynamic characters, and as I don't subscribe to that theory myself, I still am waiting to attach to her. If we'd had a whole season of episodes like Rings of Akhaten, I'd like her much more.