Tying off loose threads before the anniversary party.
Clara and the TARDIS
Clara Oswald gets into an argument with the TARDIS. It seems that the TARDIS is playing practical jokes on her in the shower and making her bedroom disappear. The time capsule compares Clara to his various female companions, and despite them coming to somewhat of a truce, the TARDIS can’t help but pull one more trick.
Clara can’t find her bedroom, and neither can Clara from the next day. Or the next. Or the next.
The console room fills with copies of sleep-deprived Claras.
The Doctor and River Song are being marched by spearpoint to be sacrificed by natives to their Rain Gods. The couple banter back and forth until the Doctor demands that the Rain Gods strike him dead if they aren’t rubbish.
A lightning strike forces their guards to cower, and the couple runs off in the ensuring rainstorm to the safety of the TARDIS.
The Inforarium is the greatest source of illicit information in recorded history… and it has been compromised. The Doctor has broken in, upset that the operatives have been selling that information to his enemies. He tells the guard that he will be erasing all traces of himself from their database, making everyone forget what they’ve heard through means he’d adapted from the Silence.
The Doctor, truly a holographic recording, continues to dismiss the guard’s complacency and suggests that he check the data drives. The guard turns away, completely forgetting the whole interaction, unaware that he’s trapped in a memory loop.
So, the message begins again.
These three home media shorts present some fun slices of life for this season. One of them actually has some meat on the bone as far as the series mythology is concerned.
The first two are frivolous throwaway stories: Clara and the TARDIS plays with the belief that the TARDIS doesn’t like Clara, a story element that was resolved with her mystery. Rain Gods adapts an unused opening sequence from The Doctor’s Wife, replacing the Ponds with River Song.
Of note, the opening for Rain Gods credits Steven Moffat as the writer, but it was actually Neil Gaiman, making this the first on-screen story featuring River to not be penned by Moffat. It’s also one of the shortest Doctor Who stories ever.
The short with the most bearing on this season’s events is The Inforarium, an adventure that shows how the Doctor was able to erase his existence leading to the events at Trenzalore. It is equal parts hilarious and chilling, and I feel a little bit sorry for the guard who is trapped in an endless loop.
These stories fill a few gaps that didn’t need sealing. They are presented here as the last bit of story material leading into the fiftieth-anniversary celebration and the Eleventh Doctor’s regeneration.
Rating: 3/5 – “Reverse the polarity of the neutron flow.”
UP NEXT – Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor
The Timestamps Project is an adventure through the televised universe of Doctor Who, story by story, from the beginning of the franchise. For more reviews like this one, please visit the project’s page at Creative Criticality.