Monday, May 31, 2010

Vampires of Venice

The Doctor treats Amy and her fiance Rory to a trip to Venice (in the year 1580). There they discover a group of female vampires - who are taking in young women, who are then never seen again. In order to investigate further, Amy goes 'undercover' as one of the girls taken into the school.

The 'mother' of the vampires (who turn out to be aliens from Saturnyne) explains the process of what they do to the young women.

This is how it works.
First we drink your blood till you're dry
then we fill you with our blood
It rages through you like a fire, changing you,
until one morning you awake and your humanity is a dream now faded

It's a gradual process that happens almost without being noticed. One of the girls, Isabella has been treated this way for a while now. While she is not yet fully transformed, she is not exactly her former self either - and she has little memory of what has caused this change.

For me, the ongoing battle between the good and not-so-good elements of life can be similar. Despite trying to be the best person i can be, there do seem to be other forces at play. Feelings of selfishness, resentment and other undesirable stuff. They sometimes do rage, and cause changes that erode away some humanity.

Fortunately, Amy managed to escape before any lasting damage could be done. I wish the same could be said for me.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Flesh and Stone

Continuing on from the Time of Angels, the Doctor, Amy, River and her crew are escaping from the angels, and discover that the angels have managed to get inside the mind of Amy. In time, this would mean Amy's demise - and when the Doctor asks what their purpose is, he gets the reply "for fun".

I've never seen the (ironically named) angels so representative of evil - or the devil if you will. Their intent is nothing but harm, they sneak up on you when you're not paying attention, and their motive is evil purely for evil's sake.

Meanwhile, in the Forest on the Byzantium, Amy becomes particularly ill, and the remedy involves her closing her eyes. The Doctor and River must move on (to enable the escape) leaving Amy guarded by several troops. This is a huge moment for Amy, as the Doctor asks for her trust. Though she cannot see, does not know what is yet to come, and faces a difficult situation, she is still able to place her trust in the Doctor.

However, after the demise of these troops, Amy searches for the Doctor. Blind, alone, and vulnerable to attack - her only assistance is the communicator she earlier received. Through it, the Doctor sends a signal which indicates his position, such that she can move in his direction. The Doctor also sends some software through to the communicator, such that it beeps in the proximity of an angel - warning Amy of any impending danger.

The communicator is a bit like prayer - maybe the holy spirit, or even the bible - as it guides us as we decide on our direction, and warns of things that are (in the Doctor's words) "extremely very not good".

As Amy continues her walk, she stumbles and falls. Ordinarily this would mean disaster, but she is saved and teleported into the presence of the Doctor. She is healed of her illness by the Doctor as he defeats the evil angels - thereby removing them from Amy.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Time Of Angels

The weeping angels are aliens with the ultimate defence system. In the sight of any living creature the angels literally cease to exist. They turn to stone. But once they can't be seen, they are deadly.

After the ship containing an angel crashed on the planet of the extinct Aplans, the angel is on the loose. The Doctor, Amy and River Song (and others) are chasing down the angel to neutralise it. To do so they navigate through an underground labyrinth of statues built by the Aplan civilisation.

RIVER: Doctor, there's something - i don't know what it is...
DOCTOR: Yeah, there's something wrong. Don't know what it is yet either. Working on it.
Then the Doctor and River realise what it is...
AMY: what's wrong?
DOCTOR: Exactly.
RIVER: How could we not notice that!?
DOCTOR: Low-level perception filter. Or maybe we're thick!

The perception filter (one of my favourite Doctor Who concepts) disguises unusual objects such that they appear to be ordinary. The objects are still there - but the filter prevents them from being fully recognised.

It kind of exists in our life too. The things we see - maybe a hundred times, but don't really notice. And it existed in Jesus' time...
When they see what I do,
they will learn nothing.
When they hear what I say,
they will not understand.

And so he encouraged his disciples to be perceptive...
Pay close attention to what you hear. The closer you listen, the more understanding you will be given — and you will receive even more.

Our perception filters may take the form of past hurts, hardened hearts, fears about the answers to the questions we'd rather not ask ourselves, or just the shallow superficial existence that sometimes lures us away from living a more fulfilled life.

Let's try to break the perception filters and receive even more. It may even keep us safe from weeping angels.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Victory To The Daleks

This adventure is very much about identity. The Doctor is summoned to the aid of Winston Churchill as he fights the second world war, and immediately recognises Churchill's new war machines. They are in fact the Daleks!

However, their potency lies dorment. It is only through the Doctor that they realise their full potential (albeit a destructive potential in the case of the Daleks).

Later, Professor Bracewell discovers that he is part human, part robot. To make matters worse, the Daleks have programmed the robotic section of his body to act as an explosive device. To save the day, it is up to Bracewell to decide his identity. With the support of the Doctor and Amy he chooses life, and goes on to live it to the full.

Similarly, it was only through Jesus that Levi (a much-hated tax collector) became Matthew the disciple, and that Saul had his road-to-damascus experience and changed to Paul. In the words of Jesus "I have come such that everyone may have life, and have it in all its fullness".