Respectful Insolence

Lord Runolfr recently reminded me of a bit of wisdom, courtesy of the Doctor (fourth Doctor, played by Tom Baker) from the episode entitled The Face of Evil. Here’s the quote:

You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts. They alter the facts to fit their views. Which can be uncomfortable if you happen to be one of the facts that needs altering.

Apply this quote as you see fit. It certainly rings true.

It also reminds me of some other good Doctor Who quotes:

‘Oil? An emergency? Ha! It’s about time the people who run this planet of yours realised that to be dependent on a mineral slime just doesn’t make sense.’

(The episode from which the above quote came aired over 30 years ago.)

Or:

Doctor: Emotions have their uses.

Cyber Leader: They restrict and curtail the intellect, and logic of the mind.

Doctor: They also enhance life. When did you last have the pleasure of smelling a flower, watching a sunset, eating a well-prepared meal?

Cyber Leader: These things are irrelevant.

Doctor: For some people, small, beautiful events is what life is all about!

Or:

Courage isn’t just a matter of not being frightened, you know. It’s being afraid and doing what you have to do anyway.

Or:

A straight line may be the shortest distance between two points, but it is by no means the most interesting.

Comments

  1. #1 Jody
    June 25, 2006

    Ah, the Doctor.

    Where is he when we really need him.

    “Why are all of these Krynoids germinating now and attacking? Well you hairless ape, you’ve bloody gone off and raised the temperature of your planet several degrees over the past few hundred years. Why wouldn’t they attack?”

    :^)

    Here’s a pretty cool trailer for the penultimate episode of the newest season. Torchwood! Cybermen! Yea!

    I’m such a geek.

  2. #2 Orac
    June 25, 2006

    Yes, but with Billie Piper announcing that she’s leaving at the end of the season, I have to wonder if the writers are going to kill her off. I hope not (only two Who companions that I’m aware of have ever been killed off in 40+ years).

  3. #3 Kristjan Wager
    June 25, 2006

    I wasn’t aware Billie Piper had a role in the series (obviously I haven’t seen it yet). I take it she is better as an actress than as a singer.

  4. #4 Deacon Barry
    June 25, 2006

    Billie Piper is an excellent actress. She has set a new benchmark for companions of the Doctor. And now she’s going to be killed off (sob). I just hope she goes out in epic style, with all guns blazing, and not a meaningless Tasha Yar type of death.

  5. #5 Ahistoricality
    June 25, 2006

    The courage line is an almost direct quotation from Pooh’s words of encouragement to Piglet, after the treehouse crisis. True, for sure, just not very original.

  6. #6 silvermine
    June 25, 2006

    She was a singer? Didn’t know that. But she’s a pretty kick ass companion.

    Of course I also think what’s his name may actually be the best doctor ever… I almost didn’t watch the series because I figured it would ruin what I remembered from childhood. But damn, they kept the spirit of the show, and just tightened it up (a ton! those 6-hour old dr who shows do seem to take forever when you re-watch them…) and have slightly better special effects. ;)

  7. #7 Jody
    June 25, 2006

    I found this online too. I dimly remember it from my freewheeling days at Creation sponsored Dr. Who conventions.

    And yes, Orac, the rumor is that Rose is going to die in the season finale. Don’t know if it’s true or not, but it does seem to be the way the season is progressing. I can’t wait until they package the new season together — the region free DVD player I have is so wonderful in situations like that.

  8. #8 Monado
    June 25, 2006

    Mark Twain also said that line about courage, and I admire him for it.

  9. #9 Lord Runolfr
    June 25, 2006

    I’m surprised you haven’t mined this page for quotes yet, Orac.

    Actually, that page could probably use some help from someone familiar with the series.

  10. #10 Orac
    June 25, 2006

    And yes, Orac, the rumor is that Rose is going to die in the season finale. Don’t know if it’s true or not, but it does seem to be the way the season is progressing.

    Sadly, I suspect that’s what’s going to happen too. I get the shows using BitTorrent because I just can’t wait until they find their way over to the States. There have been foreshadowings in Episode 9 (The Satan Pit, where the beast predicted that Rose would soon “die in battle”) and in Episode 10 (Love & Monsters, where Elton Pope, having witnessed all his friends suffer a horrible fate, all because of their shared quest to track down and meet the Doctor, speculated at the end of the episode that getting close to the doctor was dangerous and expressed a fear that Rose and her mother would soon suffer the consequences of being too close to the Doctor for too long, turning what started out as a light-hearted and somewhat silly episode a bit too serious). (I haven’t watched the latest yet, but will sometime later this week. I’m told, however, that there’s a trailer that shows the Cybermen making another appearance in the two-part season finale.)

    One of my pet speculations is that it isn’t Rose who will die but rather her mother, leading Rose to decide to stay home. Personally, I’m still hoping they don’t kill off Rose, because, quite frankly, Doctor Who (even a successfully updated Doctor Who) is not supposed to be that “dark,” which is probably why deaths among the Doctor’s companions have been so rare in the decades that the series has been on the air.

  11. #11 Terry
    June 25, 2006

    My favorite Doctor Who quote:

    “You speak heresy!”

    The Doctor: “Fluently.”

  12. #12 Orac
    June 25, 2006

    I’m surprised you haven’t mined this page for quotes yet, Orac.

    Oh, one of these days.

    Thanks to my region-free DVD player and Amazon.co.uk, I’m now in possession of all four seasons of Blakes’ 7. The shows are even better than I remember (and the special effects are just as bad as I remember). In fact, I had never seen the first six episodes of series one, which explained how Blake had become a rebel leader in the first place.

    Truly, this is little-appreciated gem of a show (one of the best SF series ever made, IMHO), and it’s a shame that it’s not available in the U.S. or in a Region 1 format. (For example, the first season of Doctor Who has been available from Amazon.ca, the Canadian branch of Amazon.com, since February, but I’m not getting it until it’s released in the U.S. next month–mainly because I’ve seen them all.) I had managed to get through the first two and a half seasons before work put a stop to that, but after study section I plan on finishing the remaining season and a half. That might then be a good time to mine the show for quotes, and the show produced a number of really good ones. (Terry Nation was one hell of a writer; he also wrote a lot of Doctor Who stories, as well.)

  13. #13 Orac
    June 25, 2006

    My favorite Doctor Who quote:

    “You speak heresy!”

    The Doctor: “Fluently.”

    I like it.

    Which Doctor said that one? I don’t remember it.

  14. #14 Ali
    June 26, 2006

    I actually won’t be sad to see Piper go at all. I can’t put my finger on it, but something about her annoys me.

  15. #15 Tara Mobley
    June 26, 2006

    My computer’s startup sound is the (4th Doctor, I think) quote “The trouble with computers, of course, is that they’re very sophisticated idiots.”

  16. #16 Trisha
    June 26, 2006

    I hope Rose doesn’t die, because I hate to see companions go that way. I had been wondering for a while though if when she did leave if she would stay on Earth or someplace else. I can’t see her being happy spending the rest of her life on earth living a typical human life.

  17. #17 Lucas
    June 26, 2006

    Billie Piper rose to fame in the UK in 1998 with the single “Because we want to” which was one hell of an annoying song. Some of the others she did were a bit better but she hasn’t done anything memorable.

    She really suprised everyone with her acting though, most thought the new Doctor Who was going to be a turkey when Piper was announced as the Doctor’s companion.

    The newspapers in the UK have revealed that she has in fact signed on for two more series of Doctor Who and in return the BBC have offered her garuanteed good roles in other dramas they make. The end episodes of the current series had begun filming around this time so I think they are very much playing up to the speculation about her leaving even though sources say she signed for longer.

    Rose also doesn’t know very much about the Doctor and this was talked about in Doctor Who Confidential which runs just after each Doctor Who episode on the BBC 3 channel. In the episode shown in the UK on saturday the Doctor made a throwaway remark when the pair were discussing parenting “I was a father once” which she replied “What was that?” before the Doctor just carried on as normal.

    I don’t think they would get rid of Rose before she learned a lot more plus the Doctor would need a new companion to replace Rose on-hand right away to carry on.

  18. #18 Prup aka Jim Benton
    June 26, 2006

    Two companions died? I remember Adric, of course, but who was the other one? And add my name to those who think Rose was one of the best if not the best companion, and I hope she doesn’t die — after all, the 9th Doctor died to save her life.

    Btw, when is Torchwood starting?

    And a final comment. The only complaint I have about the whole new series is the 1st episode. The Autons were the only truly frightening villains from the original, and I thought they were badly handled here.

  19. #19 usagi
    June 26, 2006

    Spoiler Warning

    Wikipedia lists two other companions who died, Katarina and Sara Kingdom. Both were from the 1st Doctor’s era.

    Katarina was introduced in the serial The Myth Makers, which took place during the siege of Troy… During The Daleks’ Master Plan, Katarina was taken hostage by an escaped prisoner called Kirksen, who demanded that the Doctor take him to Kembel, a planet taken over by the Daleks. To prevent the Doctor from giving in to Kirksen’s demands, she chose to trigger the controls to the airlock she was being held in, propelling both her and her captor into the vacuum of space.

    Sara Kingdom is a fictional character played by Jean Marsh in the long-running British science fiction television series Doctor Who. A security officer from the 41st century, she is sometimes classed as a companion of the First Doctor, although she appeared onscreen only for parts four to twelve of the twelve-part 1965 serial, The Daleks’ Master Plan.

    Sounds like a stretch to me to call Sara Kingdom a companion since her tenure was confined to a single story (granted one of the old school epics from the early days of the series).

    While I’ll have to figure out Bit Torent to get my Torchwood fix as soon as possible (mmm, Captain Jack), the one I’m really curious about is Terry Nation’s Blake’s 7 Legacy.

  20. #20 Ash
    June 27, 2006

    My favorite Doctor Who quote:
    “You speak heresy!”
    The Doctor: “Fluently.”

    The nearest one I can remember is from “The Awakening” with the 5th Doctor (Peter Davidson), though it was treason, not heresy.

    Sir George Hutchinson: You speak treason!
    Doctor: Fluently.

  21. #21 Dr. Mary Johnson
    June 27, 2006

    Great quotes. I have no small experience being one of those pesky facts altered by the views of the powerful and stupid.

    Medicine and Dr. Who on one blog. I am in love.

  22. #22 SV
    June 27, 2006

    Favorite Doctor Who quote –

    Doctor: Eureka!
    Companion: What does that mean?
    Doctor: It’s Greek for, “This water’s too hot.”

    Nothing especially substantial or profound, just a smart-assy assumption of savvy on the part of viewers. I wish I could remember the episode – the other person might have been Romana.

    Speaking of whom…

    Romana: Where are we going?
    Doctor: Are you speaking geographically, or philosophically?
    Romana: … Philosophically.
    Doctor: Then we’re going to lunch.

  23. #23 Terry
    June 28, 2006

    Ash may have it. I don’t remember which doctor said it, but I know it was Davidson or before.