2MTL 59: Bringing Back More Old Companions

There's enough separation between the 1.0 and 2.0 versions of Doctor Who to make a classic series companion's return a risky venture. For a mass audience, the "companion's return" story has simply been done, already. And even for a hardcore fan audience, nostalgia can only carry you so far. But under certain circumstances, it just might work….

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  1. Pretty realistic view of the "returning companion" conundrum. Basically, it's an unworkable idea. Most, as you say, simply don't have any caché with the general audience. Those that might were left in such weird circumstances that you'd have to expend some narrative energy just explaining how the Doctor found them again. Romana and Jamie are like this, sadly. How will Jamie remember the Doctor? How will Moffat explain E-Space? How, that is, without losing the masses?

    Moreover, the trick is that the return of the companion has to in some way amplify the character definition of the Doctor. Susan, and to a lesser extent, Ian are about the only two that could deliver a real emotional wallop, with minimal time necessary for explaining who they are.

    Still, I'm quite happy for it never to happen again. Sarah Jane's enough, really, to tie the current series into the old — and that's the main (fanboy) point of bringing back a "classic" companion.

    I personally loved Moffat's take on the "old" companion of River Song better than an actual "returning" companion. Showing us someone new, but portraying her as "old', is a lovely way to convey a sense of "the past" while keeping all viewers on exactly the same page.

    That's why I keep hoping for not Susan, but Susan's mother or father to make an appearance.

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