Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I Can't Be the Only One Who's Thought of This

This sort of comes out of left field, but I thought with the news that Steven Moffat is going to give the Daleks a break (SWEET MOTHER OF RASSILON, THANK YOU!), I thought it would be fun to post this idea that I've had percolating in my brain for a while now.  Granted, it probably won't ever happen, but a fan can dream, right?

Dear Friends and Internet,

This is Steven Moffat, producer, showrunner and head writer of Doctor Who.


He has created many scary monsters for the show:

The Empty Child


The Weeping Angels


The Vashta Nerada

This is actually the result of someone running into Vashta Nerada.  Honestly, the only real picture of Vashta Nerada would be a weird-looking shadow. Great-Aunt Ethel casts those all the time and she hasn't eaten anyone... yet.

The Silents


It may be said that Moffat is the man responsible for so many people, heretofore possessing the ability to control their bladders, returning to their childhood habit of bed-wetting. Those who still have dry sheets have instead had their brains turned into pretzels by the Moff's insatiable "Timey-Wimey, Spacey-Wacey" storytelling techniques that - contrary to all pessimistic predictions - have NOT gotten old. Steven Moffat is also a longtime fan of the show and is very familiar with many elements of the show's past. He has taken great care to ensure the continued success of such a beloved and treasured enterprise, which the fans (by and large) love him for.

For all the scary monsters Moffat has added to the Whoniverse, there is one monster from Classic Who that I would love to see him tackle. Nothing has been said that would indicate this would ever actually happen, but merely my fan-wank brain coming up with crazy ideas.

Ladies, gentlemen and variations thereupon, I introduce - the Mara.

This is actually the Doctor's companion Tegan as possessed by the Mara.  She doesn't always look this scary

The Mara was first introduced in the Fifth Doctor story "Kinda" and later revisited in "Snakedance." It is represented by a snake and can possess anyone it comes in contact with - sometimes more than one person. The Mara is a crafty creature; he can hide in anyone and no one else would ever know. Even if someone has been freed of the Mara, it can stay with that person for a long time and become repossessed later. It gets its power from feeding on the fear and suffering of others.  And the Mara's laugh will send the strongest and most courageous person running for their teddy bear and crying for Mommy.


(Yes, I'm giving spoiler warnings for episodes that were broadcast almost 30 years ago. Deal with it).

The ending scene of "Snakedance" where the Doctor fights the Mara with just his mind is one of the most intense and fantastic scenes in Classic Who.  It's one that I find myself unable to turn away from because it is just so good.  In watching that ending scene with all it's back-and-forth between the Doctor and the Mara, quick editing, great acting, awesome sound and special effects and, of course, brilliant writing, I wondered why New Who hasn't brought the Mara back, even for one episode (or even a two-parter).

The short answer would be that Moffat and the rest of the production team probably have their own new ideas and would rather focus on those things instead of rehashing the past, which is a good thing. The Doctor probably shouldn't fight the same monsters over and over again (*cough* Daleks *cough,cough*). However, considering how well the Mara was done in Classic Who, it would be fun to see how it would look through the eyes of New Who.

And, honestly, who wouldn't think it appropriate that Steven Moffat put his own spin on an old creature known for feeding off fear?

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