The wilderness months suck. So much. I know you Who fans of old are laughing because this is nothing compared to the wilderness years. I know that and I appreciate it. Nevertheless, it doesn’t make the wait between Christmas and the end of summer any better. And lately it’s got me feeling nostalgic for 2013. Remember the 50th Anniversary? Of course you do.
What a time to be alive.
Yes, there were things that maybe should’ve happened that didn’t. And maybe even a few things that shouldn’t have happened that did. But overall, 2013 was packed to the gills with gifts for the fans and it was bloody brilliant. One of my personal favorites was Steven Moffat actually giving us, the fans, a representative character on the show in Day of the Doctor. Osgood is the ultimate Doctor fan within the Who universe and she did not disappoint. Ingrid Oliver gave us this beautiful, strong, clever, geeky girl who happens to also be a UNIT scientist. Clearly she’d spent quite a lot of time perusing the Doctor’s files and become quite a fangirl. Complete with her own homemade Tom Baker scarf. Not to mention that she was working with Kate Lethbridge-Stewart which had to be a callback to The Daemons when the scientist/engineer working with the Brigadier was called Osgood. Maybe that’s reaching a bit, but I’d find it hard to believe that it could be a coincidence.
Osgood seemed to be an instant hit with the fans and so it was great that we actually got her back in Death in Heaven with her sand shoes and her bow tie. It was awesome up until, you know, when Missy killed her immediately after the Doctor sort of invited her to travel with him*. Cue the fanish raging! There’s always someone railing against the death of a character on Doctor Who, but Osgood’s murder really seemed to cause some outrage. Maybe it was Moffat just trolling us. Who knows? That wouldn’t exactly be unlike him**.
But now, in only a few short weeks, Osgood is returning! Now, we really never saw the resolution of the Zygon situation in the Black Archive. Where we had two Osgoods (and Kates, etc.). So it’s semi-reasonable in the world of Who to speculate that maybe Zygon!Osgood is the one that was killed by Missy? Never mind how little sense that might actually make. Or maybe the Osgood we’re seeing in pictures from the sets is actually Zygon!Osgood. Which, I suppose, might make it a continuation of Day of the Doctor. We know the Zygons are involved somehow. Maybe this even takes place prior to the events of Death in Heaven. But who knows? All of these and so many more possibilities could be the case here. Yes, Moffat said that Osgood wouldn’t return from the dead, but maybe that’s because he’s come up with a crafty way of undoing her death? Again, who knows?
And this questioning gives me seriously mixed feelings.
Don’t get me wrong. I loved (love? what is the correct tense at this point?) Osgood. I thought she was a brilliant character and I enjoyed each time she was on the show. Ingrid Oliver is wonderful and I adore her.
My concern is that whatever is going on with Osgood will create some sort of timey wimey loophole to undo her death. I wasn’t particularly happy that she was killed off, but I think that in most cases, once a character is dead, they should stay that way. The only time I really felt differently was with Rory because for that arc it made more sense. I am happy that we get to see Osgood again in whatever context it happens, but if this opens a loophole for others to come back from the dead, I’m really not okay with that.
The one I have most in mind here is Danny Pink. A character I had loads of mixed feelings about for probably all the wrong reasons, yes, but still someone that I don’t want to come back. If Danny returns, that’s probably how Clara’s story ends. And I’m not sure I’m okay with that.
In all the years I’ve watched this show and all the companions I’ve loved and sort of resonated with, Clara is my companion. I’m not sure what that actually says about me as a person, but there you go. Even when she was really nothing more than a mystery for the Doctor to solve, I saw something in her that I clung to. Then when Matt Smith regenerated into Peter Capaldi, everything changed and I found myself drawn to Clara Oswald even more. Their timelines are so bound up with one another*** and their relationship has changed so much since they began traveling together that whatever way Clara leaves now has to be spectacular. They’ve both admitted that they’re addicted to each other and have shown how much they love each other (interpret that as you will). I can’t believe that she could just walk away again. Something huge has to happen. And let’s be honest, we can probably be sure that it’s coming after the tease that happened at Christmas. And the Doctor was so excited to get his second chance with Clara that it means with his luck, something is going to happen that will turn that statement into something tragic.
But Danny returning from the dead to live happily ever after with Clara should not be it.
And that’s the only reason I’m opposed to Osgood’s return. Selfish, really, I know. And I don’t truly think Moffat will go in that direction, but there’s always a danger in assuming what he will and will not do.
What do you think? Which version of Osgood will we be seeing this series? How would you feel about bringing Osgood or Danny back from the dead?
* I both love and hate that scene because I want Osgood to have that chance, but the thought of anyone other than Clara traveling with the Twelfth Doctor right now makes me queasy. Because reasons.
** I say that with love. I‘m not a Moffat hater by any stretch of the imagination.
*** Which frankly, hasn’t been explored as much as it should have been by now. I find it impossible (ha) to believe that there weren’t more consequences for Clara and even the Doctor resulting from her (and then him) jumping into his time stream.