Doctor Who: Series 1, Episode 8 - Father's Day

Published February 19, 2011

Doctor Who spoiler

“Your wish is my command, just be careful what you wish for.”

Doctor Who series 1 episode 8

This is the episode where Rose tries to change history, and finds out she can’t, even though that is what the Doctor does… quite a lot. After building her up to be something super special in the last episode, the Doctor is reduced to calling Rose “another stupid ape” after she messes up the space time continuum.

I can’t really believe he would go along with the idea in the first place - he must know it’s bound to end in tears. Maybe it’s yet another sign that he is alien and won’t always understand how humans will react, or maybe he really did just have that faith in Rose. He knows what it’s like to lose people, so it’s not like he doesn’t have feelings.

I enjoyed this episode far more than I remembered, it may be the highlight of the series so far. A lot of that is to do with the concept of time travel and changing history and all that, but it also has a lot to do with Rose’s dad. I love it when characters just get it, and not in a super-smug way. You get to see him gradually figuring it all out and in the end, he knows what he has to do, and he does it admirably.

It also goes to show that Rose gets her brave universe-travelling, alien-accepting adventurousness from somewhere, and it certainly isn’t Jackie.

Another thing this episode does is highlight that moment when you suddenly realise your family are just human beings after all. They have lives, they have feelings, and they shield you from the truth. It’s hard to find it out, but everyone has to go through it.

Little highlights of the episode include a rather young Mickey, the police box being just a police box, and a speech about how important the ordinary man can be. Plus the enemies are quite scary, and that always helps.

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