What would the Doctor be like without the TARDIS, if he was stuck living in society like a normal guy? “The Lodger” showed us just that. The answer: he’d be like an alien trying to understand human behavior–well, even more alien than usual without a companion by his side to mediate his interactions and explain things to him.
As with “Vincent and the Doctor,” this episode was a sweet, charming diversion from the worries of time-destroying cracks that must be reckoned with very soon. The Doctor found himself quite literally evicted from the TARDIS, leaving Amy to figure out how to work the controls and get him back. In the meantime, the Doctor would be stuck in one place for some time, so he responded to an ad seeking a flatmate.
Craig was just an average guy, trying to work up the courage to tell his best friend, Sophie, that he was in love with her. He was a little too comfortable in his life, with a routine of “Pizza, beers, telly,” which the Doctor pointed out with brutal honesty: “You’re starting to look like your sofa.”
Craig also happened to have an alien living in the flat above him abducting people off the street and using them as batteries to fuel its spaceship. Usually the Doctor derives power from naming the alien/monster-of-the-week, so that he can figure out what it wants, so that he can then offer it the choice to leave Earth or stay and face him. “The Lodger” was more about the Doctor trying to adapt to “normalcy.”
“Has anyone ever told you that you’re a bit weird?” Craig asks. Weirdness aside, the Doctor made Craig feel inadequate at his job, with Sophie, and in the football match with his friends. It was just the motivation he needed to admit his feelings to Sophie and think about what he really wanted for his life.
“The Lodger” was a cute episode, but I’ve had enough time to prepare myself for what’s coming in the 2-part finale. I’m ready for it. Amy finding the engagement ring at the end reminds us that she needs to remember what she’s forgotten, just like the Doctor needs to know why the cracks are following him. Next week, “The Pandorica Opens.”
Note the date on this article may be incorrect due to importing it from our old system.