Sunday, May 17, 2015

Doctor Who: Good News for Osgood?

A few weeks ago, Whovians were happy to hear that Ingrid Oliver was returning to Doctor Who in Series 9. Oliver played the UNIT scientific adviser named Osgood in the 50th anniversary special, The Day of the Doctor. In her overlong 4th Doctor scarf, Osgood represented the Doctor Who fan base on screen. It was a joy to see her again in the 12th Doctor adventure, Death In Heaven, this time adorned with the 11th Doctor's signature bow tie and Osgood's statement that "bow ties are cool". 

So imagine those same fans who so identified with the character of Osgood and their horror when Osgood was brutally murdered by the Master (Missy) later in the episode. And just moments after the Doctor had dropped a hint that maybe Osgood could join him as a companion. 

Arrrrrgghhhh! 

Writer/Producer Steven Moffat heard our cries of pain but alas, he could do nothing to alleviate our heavy hearts. Osgood is dead, the Moff assured us. 

Absolutely dead. 

Deader than dead. 

Most sincerely dead. 

D-E-A-D. Dead!  

So there's Ingrid Oliver back on the set of Doctor Who as Osgood. 

What are we dealing with here exactly? There are a few ideas.  

1) Time travel. We're seeing Osgood before she died.

2) Osgood's appearance in Series 9 is some kind of hallucination, perhaps over the Doctor's guilt over someone else he failed to save. 

3) The Osgood that the Master killed in Death In Heaven was not the real Osgood but the Zygon who impersonated her in Day of the Doctor. Osgood in Series 9 is the real deal. 

4) The Master did kill the real Osgood and it's the Zygon impersonator who turns up in Series 9. 

While the first two are not out of the realm of possibility, Moffat's mind tends to be trickier than that. No, I'm thinking one of the latter two is the likely option. And of those, I'm thinking the 4th one. Writer Peter Harness has confirmed his story is the one that Ingrid Oliver stars in AND the Zygons are involved. In fact, check out this photo of Ingrid on the set: 















Yep, Zygons. 

Meanwhile, let's take Moffat at face value on something (which, I know, can be a treacherous thing to do) when he said Osgood was really and truly dead. And think about the drama inherent in the Zygon still having to pretend to be Osgood, torn between the human life she's become accustomed to and her loyalties to her fellow Zygons. I think Osgood as a Zygon with divided loyalties is a very interesting direction to go in. 

At least I hope that's the direction Moffat would go in. If Zygon Osgood is just "screw it, let's kill all the humans", then that's just twisting the knife that much deeper in the still raw would left in the hearts of Whovians still deeply saddened by her passing. And Steven Moffat wouldn't be THAT cruel, would he. 

Would he? 

Uh oh.

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Speaking of Steven Moffat, word has come down that the Moff as signed up for one more year as Doctor Who's showrunner and head writer. Which I...guess I'm OK with? 

Here's the thing: I like Moffat's tenure heading up Doctor Who. I'm definitely I'm not one of the haters who troll the internet. Part of me never wants Moffat to leave. 

But there's a part of me that also recognizes that in a creative endeavor, longevity can bring diminishing returns.  Valleys and plateaus exceed the peaks. The reality is that Steven Moffat can't run this show forever, even he wanted to, even if I and other fans want him to. I think Series 10 may be where he decides to exit the TARDIS for good. 

Series 10 will also be Peter Capaldi's 3rd series as the Doctor. As David Tennant and Matt Smith both did 3 series, this may be a good jumping off point for Capaldi and a jumping on point not only for a new Doctor but a new head writer and showrunner. 

But I really don't want to think about that. Not yet. I'm enjoying Peter Capaldi as the 12th Doctor with Steven Moffat at the helm too much. The future will be here soon enough.

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Speaking of television shows and changes, I'm be back tomorrow with a post on David Letterman's impending departure from the Late Show on CBS.  

In the meantime, thanks for dropping by and remember to be good to one another.

Dave-El
I'm So Glad My Suffering Amuses You 

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