Thursday, July 28, 2011

"Doctor Who" Controversy: Will They Really Save Hitler's Life?

So when most people saw the trailer for the second half of the current "Doctor Who" season, they did what every normal "Doctor Who" fan would do: squeal, jizz in their pants and watch the trailer 10 more times. Because, seriously, it has weeping angels, Cybermen, River Song wearing an eye-patch and apparently a minotaur of some sort!!!

But some people have hooked on to one line in the trailer and freaked the eff out. Specifically, one scene where Adolph Hitler tells The Doctor, Amy and Rory, "Thank you, I think you have just saved my life."

OK, I understand the discomfort in a way, because putting Hitler in any sort of entertainment context can be pretty risky. But somehow, I'm guessing that The Doctor isn't going to be like, "Hello, ol' chap, you're totally right about that whole Master Race thing! Carry on killing 12 million people." A BBC source, responding to the controversy, said, “The Doctor meets Hitler in 1938 before he commits war crimes. Viewers should wait and watch – and all will become clear.” Also, the trailer shows Rory punching Hitler, which is awesome.

That's the thing about trailers - they don't tell you what's going to happen. There's been lots of wild speculation about what's going to happen in the episode called "Let's Kill Hitler" (and we will only have to wait a month, since the episode is the first in the second half of the season and the season starts Aug. 27!), but the point is, they're getting a lot of buzz about the back half of the season because of the one little line.

And it could be totally cool, because science fiction can, at times, do a pretty good job of showing the intricacies of history. One of the all-time best "Star Trek" episodes of all time is "The City on the Edge of Forever," which essentially shows Captain Kirk and the Enterprise crew that a good woman has to die to keep Nazi Germany from taking over the world. I'm not saying that I hope that they don't kill Hitler on "Doctor Who," because I love the idea of an alternative universe where Hitler gets killed in 1938 and 12 million people don't have to die a terrible death in the Holocaust. I'm just saying that the writers could very well have their own lovely plans for this episode.

And finally, it must be said ... "Doctor Who" is just a TV show, and no episode of a sci-fi TV can change what happened in real life. All we can really hope to do with this "controversial" episode of "Doctor Who" - or any show, movie, book, etc. featuring Nazis - is to get people thinking about how the Nazi rise to power and the Holocaust happened, and how we can make sure that it never happens again.

Although watching Rory punch Hitler in the face will feel pretty damn good.

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