On the holes and Flesh in Doctor Who

This weekend’s episode of Doctor Who finally answered some questions. Typically, it also presented new ones.

(Note: Because BBC America is now a week behind on broadcasting Doctor Who, thanks to Memorial Day weekend, any readers who are following that channel’s broadcasts may want to hold off a week before checking out my opinions below.)

The two-part episode was fantastic, classic new Doctor. It explored serious moral issues, examined the chracters deeply in places, and even turned out, at the very end, to be a solid part of the myth-arc line.

So, we’ve figured out what’s going on with Pond, and it’s pretty much what we could have expected. Perhaps the mechanism was unknown, but we could see clearly that she had been captured, and that her real body was being held somewhere else. At least now we know how, if not why.

Of course the most relieving thing to discover is that it hasn’t been a dream sequence. I didn’t think it likely, but in this kind of storyline, there was always the chance that she was being forced to hallucinate or VR this season’s adventures.

I think that would have been upsetting for everyone involved however, so there probably wasn’t much chance of it happening in the first place.

Of course, in a way, we were all being tricked. We were lead to believe that the Flesh was the answer to how The Doctor was able to be killed in two-hundred years, but instead became the solution to Pond’s strange pregnancy.

The technology of her kidnappers must be astounding considering: The rig she’s in can apparently transmit a full consciousness across boundless space and time, but even outside of the universe, where the group spent a day or two in episode 4 of this season. Then again, it can get through all of that while being unable to penetrate whatever brief signal The Doctor discovered with his screwdriver.

Some of it surely seems a bit shoddy, however. There a few issues of verisimilitude. For example, the gangers from the Acid plant are “turned human” simply by entering the TARDIS, and being in the presence of its energy – while Pond’s ganger has been traveling in the TARDIS for months, at least, and did not. Maybe a side-effect of that Flesh not having a disembodied consciousness inside it, but it feels like a plot-hole.

The big question now, for me anyway, is: When? She had to have been taken sometime between the end of the previous season and the beginning of this one, but we have very little notion of what happened there.  

The trio went off to find adventure direct from the wedding, then at some point after, they split up, and the two humans were left alone on earth to live their lives before receiving the TARDIS-blue invitation. Perhaps upcoming episodes of Doctor Who will fill in some of the holes in the part of the story.