A Study in Doctor Who: The Spirit of Man and the Heart of God

Lots of saint-spammy 😉 posts are in the works, my readers, but before I post my first one, I have a special something to write about.

Guess what?

I just finished Doctor Who series 5! Well, last week I did. And let me say that it was brilliant. 😉

But that last two-parter.

“The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang…”

I just.

I cannot.

I cannot tell you how much my heart spilled over, how much I wanted to cry, how much I screamed, how much I said “awww” and how much I laughed.

Because this scene will never not be funny:

Don’t test me. That was quite possibly my favorite part of season five.

But! Moving on, in all seriousness…

Then again, it’s Doctor Who, so what is seriousness?



The entirety of season five was fantastic. Season five was what made me even decide to reconsider watching Doctor Who at all, especially since I was just not a fan during the Eccleston and early Tennant eras. Rose Tyler was sort of…an annoying presence and sappy character in my humble opinion, and watching episodes like “Love and Monsters” or “The Idiot’s Lantern” was just…weird and really unenjoyable.

I will say that “Army of Ghosts” and “Doomsday” were amazing (I didn’t cry for Rose, but I almost did), I really enjoyed “The Impossible Planet” and “The Satan Pit,” as well. Not to mention “Blink” (written by the infamous Steven Moffat) and “Midnight” which were incredibly intriguing and spooky stories. Tennant is classic, so I suppose some of his episodes are quite alright. And Donna Noble is a queeeeen.

But really, Doctor Who didn’t become a favorite show of mine until Ten turned into Eleven.

The Doctor turned into a baby giraffe. He turned into a five-year-old little boy who still writes his Christmas list every year. He turned into a hilarious, whimsical, socially awkward, curious, exciting ball of energy and sunshine.

I am honestly laughing out loud just writing about him.

Matt Smith is my favorite of the doctors. So far, at least. He definitely beats Eccleston and Tennant, in my opinion.

Reason being?

Well, the foes are a lot more exciting – three creepy cheers for the Silence and the Weeping Angels, pretty please! I just finished “The Impossible Astronaut” and “Day of the Moon,” and I was quite nearly jumping up and down and ugly-screeching when Amy was locked in *that room.* I see you, and you know what room I’m talking about.

I find the stories a lot more interesting as well…they’re a lot less dorky than the earlier ones tended to be (walking mannequins that have blasters in their arms won’t cut it, Mr. Russel T. Davies), and I really really really like the fact that the Eleventh Doctor wears a bowtie.

I love that bowtie. Bowties are cool.

But if these were my only reasons for loving Eleven’s era on New Who, then they’d honestly be pretty shallow ones. There’s one particular reason that Eleven sticks out like a man wearing a fez in a crowd of decent, civilized people. 😉

It’s his love for humanity.

While this has been emphasized in most of the other seasons and episodes of Doctor Who (i.e. “The Girl in the Fireplace,” “The Empty Child,” “The Impossible Planet/The Satan Pit”), I personally feel that during the Eleventh incarnation, the Doctor displays even more of a love and intrigue and care for humans. Simply because they’re humans.

And for children. His childish antics and random bursts of enthusiasm really accentuate his sheer love for the child’s soul. And that honestly makes me so pleased.

Anyway, moving on.

There is no one else with the power of the Doctor. The one singular race that he so diligently and possessively protects are the humans.



The Doctor loves people because of their emotion, their wit, their intellect, their curiosity. He loves their protective nature, their fearless hearts, their strength to endure, their love for each other. The Doctor loves the good people of earth; and he sees the good in the not-so-good ones.

The humanness of people is something that the Doctor marvels over time and time again; every decision he makes is one that will better the fate of the humans…and the fates of all their human emotions and silly little human qualities. He loves people: he loves who they are, where they come from. He loves their stories. He loves their quirks and habits. He notices everything about everyone. He cares about why the children cry, and he will become their hero to stay their tears.

So when I watched “The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang,” these thoughts and this accumulation of ideas about the Doctor’s pure love for humanity sort of fell at top speed and crashed clumsily into my head.

And it hit me right when the Doctor flew into the explosion in the Tardis.

He knew his memory would most likely be erased from the minds of every human being, he knew he would fade out of existence, he knew no one would remember him, and yet he did it anyway.

Yet the reason he did it is what makes it so spectacular.

He wanted the people to keep on living. He wanted them to continue on being people. He wanted Amy Pond and Rory Williams to get married. He wanted Amy to have her mother again. He wanted Rory to live with the love of his life.

Amy and Rory (my little balls of happiness and adorability) represent everything that’s human to the Doctor, and his love for them and for their humanness is what plunges him into the swirling insides of an exploding crack in time and space.

And it was the love of the human soul that spurred him forward.

It guided his way, and it eventually led him into the heart of a broken time vortex.

The breath of man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all his innermost parts.

Proverbs 20:27

Reading this verse the very night I finished watching “The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang” made me realize just why I love the Doctor’s affinity for all things human.

Because it is the same thing that drove Christ forward. The breath of man is the lamp that leads the Doctor, and the breath of man is the lamp of the Lord. The human cause is the Lord’s cause, and it’s also the Doctor’s cause.

Intrigued and absolutely adoring of the children he created, Christ literally gave everything He had for us, just as the timeless™ Doctor seems to do in nearly every episode for the people he just cannot get enough of.

The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don’t always soften the bad things, but vice versa, the bad things don’t always spoil the good things and make them unimportant.

The Eleventh Doctor

Because he sees people. He sees their souls, the love they crave, the people they protect, and he knows that the heart of a human being is worth fighting for.

In one of my favorite episodes of the fifth series, “Vincent and the Doctor,” the Doctor and Amy take the time to listen to the poor, grieved Van Gogh and to show him what life looks like in the future simply because he existed. The mad man isn’t really mad; he fights demons in his mind that no one else can see.

In “The Beast Below,” the only reason the Doctor leaves the Tardis to investigate the mishaps aboard Starship UK is because he sees a child crying. He sees the aching soul of a human child, and it launches him into a terrifying adventure.

And of course, how could I forget the instance in which he marvels over the sheer beauty of childhood as presented in the person of young Amelia Pond? The smile that spread across his face when he looked at young Amelia Pond is one of pure admiration of the child’s heart. He quibbled over food with her, listened to her go on about a crack in her wall, and became the childhood hero and imaginary friend that lived in her dreams.

And I AM celebrating Fish Fingers and Custard day this year.

Because the Eleventh Doctor loves people. He adores people. People is what makes him do everything. The souls and the emotions and the humanness of human kind is what puts a fire in his heart and resolve in his mind.

And it all sort of whips me around and points me back to the God of Creation. The one who cannot get enough of the songs we sing, the poems we write, the stories we tell, and the reasons we laugh. He sees us and he loves us, and he quite simply decides that he will do anything to fight our battles. No matter how ridiculous we become, it’s impossible for him to stop loving the seven and a half billion of us on the planet.

Because we all matter to him.

We all are significant.

There isn’t one of us that doesn’t matter in the eyes of the creator God.

Nobody important? Blimey, that’s amazing. D’you know in 900 years of time and space, I’ve never met anyone who wasn’t important before?

The Eleventh Doctor

Because that’s what the spirit of man does to the Doctor.

That’s what the spirit of man does to God; the heart of God has been set on fire by the spirit of man. He will never stop defending us, loving us, or delighting in all of the beauty we make whilst we live on this earth.

He sees us as only He can: none of us are unimportant, and none of us ever will be.

And that, peeps, is why I have quite fallen in love with the little baby giraffe.

I quite hope my drift has been caught. 😛

Allons-y! and Geronimo!

Emily 😉

P.S. For the feelz ~

6 thoughts on “A Study in Doctor Who: The Spirit of Man and the Heart of God

  1. Okay, I know I said I’d leave a comment this afternoon after I got home from work–but I got an unexpected day off, so I can go ahead and say all the things now 😉

    I AM SO EXCITED THAT YOU LOVE ELEVEN. Actually, I’m just so excited that you’re loving Doctor Who now, haha! Like you, I just really couldn’t get into the Eccleston/Tennant eras; there are some real gems in their storylines (like “The Girl in the Fireplace” and “The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances”), but they just didn’t have the whimsy and “epic-ness” that finally came into play once Steven Moffat took over the show with the Eleventh Doctor.

    And Eleven is SO endearing. He is TOTALLY the five-year-old baby giraffe who still keeps a Christmas list, yes–but he can also be the Madman in a Box “who lives on a cloud in the sky…and all he does, all day every day, is to stop all the children in the world ever having bad dreams.” (Isn’t that a gorgeous quote? See what you have to look forward to when you finally meet Clara Oswald? 😉 )

    In some ways Doctor Who’s worldview is not-at-all-Christian…AND YET! And yet, it contains so much truth, goodness, and beauty–and God is the source of all that is true and good and beautiful–so in some ways, Doctor Who is actually a VERY Christian show. And I think you pinpointed the Christ-like qualities of our favorite Time Lord quite wonderfully, my friend. Bravo, bravo–and I can’t wait to hear more about your Whovian adventures! 🙂

    1. Steven Moffat for the win! A lot of people hate on his work, and I feel that, but honestly…his writing is why I love Doctor Who! Eleven’s era is wonderful! Thanks again for the recommendation!

      I’m SO excited for Clara Oswald! I’ve seen The Rings of Ahkaten (which was so cool) and I remember how much I loved her curious, spunky nature. And Jenna Coleman is such a dainty little lady. Victoriaaaa…

      There’s definitely a lot to be said about themes and values in Doctor Who, especially when they’re analyzed from a Christian viewpoint! I definitely want to explore the symbolism in the Silence and the Weeping Angels!!

      Ooh. Mustn’t forget: I got a notification for your fanfic this morning! Excuse me while I pop over there and read it since i just got off work! 😁😁😁 so excited!

  2. So I just came back to give this another read, and wow, I still love it so much… great job on this analysis, Emily, it perfectly encapsulates so much of what I LOVE about Doctor Who (and especially Steven Moffat’s take on the show). 👏❤❤

    As Maribeth mentioned in her comment, it’s so interesting how a show written from a mainstream/liberal, atheistic perspective by non-Christian writers, which basically holds up humanism as its main philosophy, ALSO manages to hold so many beautiful truths of Christianity and the God who I serve. Such an interesting dichotomy there. And definitely one of the reasons I’ve come to love it so much.

    I’m going to be predictable now (hehe 😏), but I have to say… so many of the things you pointed out about Eleven and his love for humanity reminded me so much of the Eighth Doctor, who once chose to accept a fate worth than death, and then eternal exile from his own *universe*, simply for the love of one human girl who, by the estimation of most, didn’t deserve to live.
    And for that matter, the Third Doctor, who may have been the first to truly LOVE humanity, and despite being repeatedly reminded of all their flaws and failures, continued to fight for them and try his best to teach them better ways.

    ALSO just WAIT till you get to the Twelfth Doctor – he is SO different than Eleven in so many ways, but my GOODNESS how much I love him, and how magnificent his character development is, coming to rest firmly in a speech that never fails to make me want to cry for the depth of Truth it contains… I won’t spoil anything, but I’m really looking forward to discussing it with you whenever you get there. 😉😁

    1. Exactly! It’s not a “Christian” show by any means, but there is so much TRUTH in it. And all truth is God’s truth. Everyone recognizes it, and so do us Christian geeks, if I may be so bold in using the term!

      I love the Doctor for his love of humanity. I WANNA WATCH EIGHT SO BAD after watching “Night of the Doctor.” Paul McGann seems so fun and exciting and also HE WEARS A CRAVAT. HELLO, but that’s basically amazing.

      And as we have chatted on Instagram briefly, I have finally met 12, and I am starting to get a little sad. I need to push through, because I’m definitely not done with the show, but right now my little heart is a bit sad. *sighs*

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