DOCTOR WHO - Was it Date Night for Clara and the Doctor? - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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DOCTOR WHO - Was it Date Night for Clara and the Doctor?

Has Stacy Embry spotted a possible series 8 story arc?

I had a logic teacher in college who would say, "keep doing the problems...your subconscious figures them out first."

So... here I was in episode 8.5 finding Time Heist a flat-out romp, enjoying its fluffy rhythm and fabulous performance from Keeley Hawes. It was not an emotionally moving adventure, and actually brought a lot of Hide again to the screen - back were the orange spacesuits with Clara and the Doctor on a rescue mission for a couple of strange and terrifying creatures that only wanted to be together. Then suddenly, and without warning, I believe I started to see a new story arc. His revenge was insidious, but Steven Moffat may actually have been working on this over this whole season to date. 

I have to believe there's a chance that if we "aren't so pessimistic", as chided by the Doctor in this episode, we will become satiated. After all, Moffat did place River Song in the library an entire season before she began her pursuit of the 11th doctor, and we'll never forget Oswin wearing a Dalek suit and appearing months before our introduction to Clara.

After noticing this possible arc I re-watched the first four episodes, and things started to fall into place. So, help me readers as I piece this together...

In Deep Breath whilst the Doctor was talking in his sleep he says "I am alone now...can't see me...doesn't see me". Clara assumes he is translating the dinosaur's howling, but when watching again it is actually a foreshadowing of the Doctor's own fear of being rejected by Clara - "You can't see me, can you?".

Then during Into The Dalek, the Doctor establishes that her opinion as to whether he's a good man or not matters, because he fully trusts Clara to "be his pal." In Robot of Sherwood there was a rivalry/competition between Robin and the Doctor who were both seeking approval of the pretty girl. The Doctor literally duels her hero to win his lady's favor, and at the end he seems shocked and pleased that he is Clara's hero, and not Robin. In Listen it ultimately was Clara he was listening to... he acquiesces to her gentle, "do as you're told.".

Then we come to Time Heist, the Doctor motivates his co-conspirators into robbing the bank by asking them "to picture the thing you want the most in the universe and decide how badly you want it", because it was there, waiting in the bank. The guest characters, even the baddies, had something in there that was priceless to them. However, the Doctor never got his reward....

Or did he?
After Clara went off to her date with Danny Pink, Capaldi's 12th Doctor said with a swagger... "robbing a bank, robbing a whole bank...beat that for a date."

Say, what Mr. Moffat? 

He's "not your boyfriend", no...  this Doctor is a man. No more namby pamby about it.... as clear at 11 in the TARDIS during The Snowmen. A man standing in front of a woman. Makes sense, and even gives a pathos to the rejection of the Doctor in his debut.

In Time Heist it was The Doctor who was the Architect, he was the one planning the robbery. But had he also been responsible for a lot more deliberate planning across the whole season? There were some moments during the episode when things started to click into place:

1.  The Doctor had planned a whole day for him and Clara. She flat out rejected him for Danny pushing him off when the phone rang as there's "a playmate for you." This is the second time a phone rings at the pivotal moment just as she's out the door and possibly 12's life. Previously, at the end of his premiere installment, Clara starts to opt out of further TARDIS adventures until 12 faces the humiliation of needing 11 to convince her to see him.

2.  Clara was not sheltered in the adventure, but active and decisive, as noted in the rest of season eight. There was a lot of plot to get through, but the Doctor was not treating her like a child. He even, like 11 in The Day of the Doctor, called her Boss.

3.  He has an ongoing crisis of confidence about his own looks. Why? His frown lines and gray hair look good on him/Capaldi. He even commented on his clothes, "I was going for minimalism and ended up with magician." Why does he seem to compensate by underplaying the youth and vitality he clearly admires in Clara? Why is he being gender neutral when clearly affected by Marion's cheek kiss and even Saibra's hug?

4.  The Doctor said D-A-T-E immediately after sending Clara off for her second one of the evening now with Danny Pink. He'd insured she was already tired, had a full stomach and was still buzzing from the adventure with him. Was she really going to be a lot of fun for Danny Pink? Feels like Rose leaving a bold man for a tame boy - Mickey Smith.

5.  Finally, Clara was in the bank...and he got her back. Is she the thing he wanted most in the universe? Is she "the salvage of a lifetime" as Matt Smith's Doctor said of her in Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS? Oh, and what's that? Time Heist was co-written by Stephen Thompson, the man who also penned Journey.

Has Moffat been deliberately planning this all along? Is this just a red herring? Or is it that most illusive of all things... a story arc?

So, WHOVIANS... whatcha thinking? Is there an arc here or am I manufacturing one?

Stacy enjoys sharing her occasionally polarizing opinions to elicit discussion. In a phrase, she states: "I don't want readers to be parrots...unless they are of the Python variety wherein a "palindrome of BOLTON would be NOTLOB." A former university professor and current secondary educator... Ms. Embry is also a writer, Educational Psychologist and Grief Counselor in Indianapolis, Indiana USA.

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