Happy Easter everybody! I hope that you’ve all had your fill of chocolate or sweets and that you’re looking forward to at least an extra day off. I am in no ways religious, and I’m perfectly happy with everyone having their own personal beliefs when it comes to life’s big questions. Easter Sunday is one of the most important days of the year for Christians; so I thought I’d have a look at how religion and faith have been portrayed in Doctor Who.
I think personally, that the idea of faith and belief and religion has been quite prominent during Steven Moffat’s tenure of Doctor Who. We of course had The Eleventh Hour in which we see how little Amelia’s faith in the Doctor was already shattered after one visit and an unkept promise and how that affected her as an adult. The theme of faith in the Doctor is something that was very prominent during Amy Pond’s time in the TARDIS; in Amy’s Choice for example, we see where Amy’s trust lies, believing that the Doctor knows which reality is the real one and putting both her and Rory’s lives in danger. In The Impossible Astronaut we see Amy mourn the supposed death of the Doctor and we see how her faith in him has grown, instantly believing in him and hoping that he has a plan to get out of this mess. In The Girl Who Waited we see this faith and belief in the Doctor absolutely shattered when Amy believes that both the Doctor and Rory have abandoned her in the Two Streams Facility. Likewise, in the following episode, The God Complex, we’re treated to an episode that revolves around the premise of you losing hope in the things that you believe in and having your faith shattered.
This Steven Moffat trope isn’t just confined to the Eleventh Doctor’s era either, as when we were introduced to the Twelfth Doctor in Series 8, we saw our favourite Time Lord question his self-belief and his moral code; asking the question ‘Am I a good man?’. Personally, I have a feeling that the next companion, whoever they may be, might also have an Amy Pond like story arc where we see them grow to idolise the Doctor as almost like a godlike figure who can do no wrong; only for it to be shot down right in front of them.
Personally, I think that belief and faith and the Doctor go hand in hand with one another; and when we get episodes or even entire series that are based around the notion of shaking that belied and faith in the Doctor they really do show the viewer just how much we seem to idolise the Time Lord. Maybe we shouldn’t. Maybe the Doctor isn’t a good man at all, and he is just a man who stumbles into doing the right thing by choice. Maybe we’re all just conditioned to believe that the Doctor’s actions are always going to be the right ones. Like the Great Intelligence said in The Name of The Doctor, he’s not a hero to all; to many he’s a villain who leaves a trail of devastation in his wake; he’s brought civilisations down the ground, he’s committed genocide and he never seems to mourn those who he considers the villains.
Overall, the concept of belief and faith isn’t really a fixed thing; in my mind, belief and faith is something that isn’t a fixed thing, the way you interpret what faith or belief is is entirely personal to you. In my opinion you can believe in anything you want as long as you try to understand everyone else’s point of view. Having faith in someone or something is no bad thing either; in fact I think it’s a good thing to have faith in something that you feel comfortable and safe with. Whether it be faith in the Doctor, faith in a religion, faith in a band or a song or a person close to you. Go forward in all of your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine.
Thank you for reading this, and I hope that you’re all having a happy Easter.