‘Doctor Who,’ ‘The God Complex’ and Faith

I’ll be talking about “Doctor Who’s” ‘The God Complex,” so if you haven’t watched it yet, you’re only spoiling yourself, but not in the good, luxurious way, in the bad “don’t’ you want to enjoy the show first?” way.

Did we ever, exactly, find out with “The God Complex” what faith the Doctor has? We focus so much on Amy and her faith in the Doctor, but the Doctor also has a room, which means that he also must have enough faith for feasting.

So faith in what or whom?

Rory – now someone much bolder and far more interesting than he was when he stepped in the TARDIS – had no room. The hotel kept trying to get him to leave, as he had nothing for the minotaur to feed on, and the Doctor was sure that it was because he had no faith at all.

Which sets up an interesting dynamic between Rory and the Doctor. The Doctor now knows, unequivocally, that Rory doesn’t believe in him, doesn’t have faith in him to keep them safe. When they talk in front of the photos of the people who died in the hotel, Rory talks about their travelling together in the past-tense, as the Doctor notes.

But the Doctor did have a room.

So why? What would he have to feed the minotaur? Perhaps it was the faith that Rita spoke about not long before her own faith was consumed, his unending belief that it is his responsibility to save everyone, and his eternal confidence that he will.

And yet, though this episode, aside from its ending, felt very standalone, it seemed like there was a layer we were missing, a bigger picture we aren’t seeing, as though there was another thread to the story that wasn’t onscreen. As one Redditor suggested (I’m so sorry, I can’t find your comment now, so  I can’t link to it, but feel free to step up and take your credit), noting the odd way Rory reacted when he thought that Amy was going to hit him for speaking against the Doctor, perhaps the Silence are involved.

Maybe they have been, driving a separation between the Doctor and Amy, stemming back several episodes. For example, the Silence may have motivated  Amy  to get her cell phone and to press the red button  (who ever presses a red button?) in “The Girl Who Waited;” the “glitch” that brought them into the 80s
hotel prison in “The God Complex” may not have been a glitch at all.

I also found the parting of the Williams (née Ponds) and the Doctor strangely flat. The Doctor didn’t bother to say goodbye to Rory, which may have been related to some simmering resentment over Rory’s lack of faith, or, again, something we could not see. It was odd, then, that after everything they’d gone through together, Rory and the Doctor’s last meaningful words were those shared over those photos.

Regardless, I ended “The God Complex” feeling as though I was missing something, and something huge. That what we saw wasn’t all there was,
and yet without enough hints to confirm the feeling.

So what was it that gave the Doctor his own room? The episode title is a double entendre, referring to the way the creature fed and the Doctor himself, and the repeated bouts of “praise him” echo some of what we saw of the Doctor’s reputation in “A Good Man Goes to War.” The Doctor has become someone
enamored of his own abilities
, and unable to keep himself in check.

So was it not just Amy’s faith in him, but his own faith in himself that brought them to that prison? Because, it seems, no matter how strongly Amy believes in her Doctor, he believes in himself more. Perhaps his speech to her not only loosened her faith, it shook his as well.

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One comment

  1. At the end of God Complex Amy and Rory are dropped of in flat. Is this the flat we see in The Impossible Astronaut?. because this would impy the adventurres 2-11 happen after and before the Imposible Astronuaut.
    In the wedding of River Song, if Amy and Rory have gone off with the doctor in epsiode 2, how does final scene take between Rivers, Amy and Rory?

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