**Crossposted with permission from the awesome Our Freedom To Love: A website journal raising awareness for the rights of bi-national gay couples and the LGBT community at large.
Warning, there will be SPOILERS, SWEETY.
This morning I logged on with other Whovians to comment on last night’s Doctor Who episode “Closing Time”. For those who don’t know, it features the return of a surprisingly popular character, Craig Owens, from last season’s “The Lodger” as well as iconic villains, the Cybermen. Although, I should say I was more excited to see the reintroduction of the cybermat, which, in my opinion, turned out to be scarier than the Cybermen (one can argue they haven’t been frightening since 1967.)
So in the story, the Doctor pops in to say hello to Craig, who has been left alone to watch his infant son, Alfie, or “Stormaggedon, the Dark Lord of All” as he prefers to be known. The Doctor speaks “baby”…just go with it. Only instead of a quick chat and hopping back into the TARDIS, his curiosity leads him to find employment in a department store and investigate the strange power outages and the mysterious “silver rat“.
Insisting the he assist him in this investigation, Craig straps Alfie in a papoose and follows the Doctor to the store where one of the employees mistakes them for a gay couple. There’s also a bit where the Doctor tries to keep Craig’s attention on him, shockingly professing that he has the hots for Craig, in order to keep him from freaking out about the approaching Cyberman. Just kidding, old boy.
Did you hear that?
That was the sound of Christians howling in offended disbelief.
Of course, we all now what the agenda is – tolerance.
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The Doctor has and always will be a character espousing the agenda of tolerance. Since the series began in the 1960s, the Doctor and his companions have been sticking up for the oppressed, repressed and underdogs across the universe. The Doctor also rebels against the stuffy – and hypocritical – elitist establishment of Time Lord society. If he wasn’t so amazed and respectful of the diversity of life and cultures throughout the galaxies, would he really be so inclined to fight the outer space Nazi Daleks? Would he care to stop the Cybermen’s quest to conform all life into their own generically cybernetic vision?
And if it wasn’t for a gay man, Russell T. Davies, we probably wouldn’t even have a brand new Doctor Who series to argue about in the first place!
And let’s get this settled right now – Captain Jack Harkness is NOT GAY. He’s “omnisexual”, as the Doctor explained. Because the character comes from a point in humanity’s future where mankind has spread across the stars, they are no longer concerned with 21st century taboos. Jack is attracted to men, women and other species of sentient life. However, I think it’s because Torchwood plays up the homosexual angle that people mistake him as being solely gay (or bisexual, but the sexual tension with Gwen Cooper is just…*yawn*). By the way, I would also like to thank Torchwood for the copious amounts of naked John Barrowman ass, too. It’s appreciated.
Alice and May Cassini are the first homosexual married couple featured in a Doctor Who episode.
Not to mention that old man who fancies the 10th Doctor.
Most importantly, the Doctor treats these characters with respect and kindness. He doesn’t talk down to them, he doesn’t moralize – aside from telling Jack to keep it in his pants. In fact, these characters don’t even play the victims – they help the Doctor and his companions. It’s like they’re trying to teach children that gays are actually useful, contributing members of society!
And it’s this that I find most inspiring. They are not victims. They do not hide, they stand up for themselves and are proud of who they are. It’s completely antithetical to the way others want to portray us and, to a detriment, the way we oftentimes portray ourselves. How dare the writers portray us as people! People with rights and integrity and dignity! How dare the writers shove that down their throats!
Respect, tolerance and love.
You’d think these would be commendable subjects in a family show. I had replied to the complaining Christian that the writers of Doctor Who are trying to reflect its viewing audience and society at large. There are gays everywhere and some even watch Doctor Who. Did everyone flip out that white Rose was dating black Mickey? You mean people actually date outside of their own race, too?!
Reflecting back the diversity of their own culture shows children that not everyone is the same and that’s okay – human or alien. Because it prepares them for the real world, when they have to deal with a variety of people much different from themselves. The Doctor teaches tolerance by example – and let’s remember that tolerance and acceptance are two different things. The Doctor shows us how a little respect and kindness go a long way. He teaches us that we can live with one another if we want to. I think this lesson is obvious is the series 5 rehash of the 3rd Doctor serial, Doctor Who and Silurians. What an awful thing to teach impressionable young children, that different people can live together in peace!
But is Doctor Who pushing the Homosexual Agenda? I don’t think so. I believe the good Doctor is teaching many children what many of their parents can’t seem to do themselves.