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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Entertainment & Interests > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Doctor Who

Doctor Who "Bigger on the inside..."

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Old May 26 2013, 09:32 AM   #1
Candlefright
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Doctor Who accused of racism

http://www.stuff.co.nz/8718898/Docto...eringly-racist

Doctor Who has been accused of many things during its 50 years on TV - most to do with cheesy special effects - but "thunderingly racist" is probably not one of them.
A group of academics claim the popular British sci-fi show is steeped in attitudes "that continue to subjugate people of colour" and shows contempt for "primitive" people.
In a new book, Doctor Who and Race, they argue that the Timelord is dismissive towards his black companions and question why he is more interested in battling Daleks and Cybermen than fighting slavery.
One even cites the Doctor's love of cricket as proof of the show's prejudices.
Professor Amit Gupta says that Peter Davison's incarnation of the character in the Eighties "portrayed the amateur English cricketer of the late 19th Century when the game was characterised by both racial and class distinctions.
"Cricket also had a role in maintaining the status of British imperialism through the exercise of soft power as it was successfully inculcated by the colonial elites. Davison's cricketing Doctor once again saw the BBC using Who to promote a racial and class nostalgia that had already outlived its validity."
Although the faces on Doctor Who have been predominantly white - to date, there has been no black Doctor and shows in the Seventies had white actors playing Asian parts - more recent producers have tried to champion a more diverse cast.
However, another contributor to the book criticises these attempts, citing the relationship David Tennant's Doctor has with black companion Martha Jones (played by Freema Agyeman).
She says an episode in 2007 had the Doctor speaking dismissively of Martha's fears that she would be sold into slavery as the two characters visited Elizabethan England.
The Doctor tells her to "walk about like you own the place. It works for me."
The author claims the comment "betrays the ignorance of writers about historical racial violence and contemporary white privilege".
Lenny Henry for Doctor #12.
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Old May 26 2013, 09:40 AM   #2
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

Doctor Who has been accused of many things during its 50 years on TV - most to do with cheesy special effects - but "thunderingly racist" is probably not one of them.
This is news to me, the racism in a lot of Doctor Who has been discussed at length for decades - you'd find plenty of stuff to write a book about - from Tomb of the cybermen to The Celestial Toymaker and so on.
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Old May 26 2013, 10:35 AM   #3
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism



OTOH, I can understand that some could find that criticism to level.

But still.
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Old May 26 2013, 10:47 AM   #4
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

This should come as no surprise to anyone. Doctor Who has largely been racist and sexist for most of its run. The Davies era was at least a bit better when it comes to sexism, but the Moffat era has now returned to type.

Oh, and if the next Doctor, after Matt Smith, is a white dude - again - it would be blatant ignorance on the part of the producers.
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Old May 26 2013, 10:53 AM   #5
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

I've never seen as many interracial couples in any television series as in Doctor Who during the RTD era.
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Old May 26 2013, 10:54 AM   #6
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

The Timelords have spent the last million years indoors.

Everyone on Earth used to be black, it's only taken a few tens of thousands of years for roughly the same looking ethnicity to divide into what we regard now as a typical strata of human diversity.

And %99 percent of those tens of thousands of years, we as a species had mostly spent outdoors.

English weather makes white people.

If you want to chose, decree what colour your family will be graduating towards for the next thousand years, move and plant your legacy where the sunlight will reflect that aspiration, baring of course any catastrophic climate shift.

So saying all that, what I found ridiculous was all the lilly white anglosaxon cavemen in The Savages.

How many Asian actors were in Marco Polo?
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Old May 26 2013, 10:58 AM   #7
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

Ubik wrote: View Post
Oh, and if the next Doctor, after Matt Smith, is a white dude - again - it would be blatant ignorance on the part of the producers.
Bollocks.
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Old May 26 2013, 11:07 AM   #8
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

Still if we want to talk about racism in mainstream Sci-fi, you'd have to go some way to beat "all the the black people went to live on an island" as we saw in the Legion of Super-Heroes.
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Old May 26 2013, 11:16 AM   #9
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

Ubik wrote: View Post
Oh, and if the next Doctor, after Matt Smith, is a white dude - again - it would be blatant ignorance on the part of the producers.
You can say the same for Bond then.
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Old May 26 2013, 11:22 AM   #10
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

Plenty of people have - Bond is fairly racist at times.
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Old May 26 2013, 11:24 AM   #11
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyroc

I am watching "Chasing Liberty" a Mandy Moore Romcom about the pressure of dating when you're the first daughter, right now, and I still have the reserve to vomit a little more after learning about this Tyroc person.

Although, to be fair...

All the black people in the world didn't go to an island, it was just a handful of escaped slaves in the 19th century, who then invented super science and... If hyper intelligent telepathic Gorillas could invent super science before the rest of the world why not runaway African slaves half way to America?

Hitler originally wanted to send the Jews to Madagascar. No tricks. He just wanted them out of sight. It wasn't until the Reich Treasurer broke down the cost of humanely shifting that many people so far away, that things got out of hand.
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Old May 26 2013, 12:45 PM   #12
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

What a load of bollocks. Most of the issue is just with the fifth doctor. "Hi I'm a 19th century cricketer, I must be racist". I get fed up with all this shit. I remember reading this blog by some women who accused Moffat of being sexist. While I don't really like Moffat, sexist is one thing he is not really. At least not intended.
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Old May 26 2013, 12:56 PM   #13
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

This is such bullshit. Why is society so precious about skin colour? I couldn't care less. Be proud about something you've achieved, not your race.
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Old May 26 2013, 01:42 PM   #14
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

How come no Green Lantern was ever played by a green actor?
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Old May 26 2013, 02:17 PM   #15
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Re: Doctor Who accused of racism

RTD era was racist as were a few classic stories but this article ignores all the actual cases? Black people were consistently portrayed as idiots under RTD.

That said it's terribly ageist as is 99% of other tv. If they can get that many kid actors there should be old ones too. Villains are fun but other roles please too.
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