You know my favourite scene in The Stones of Blood? Sure you do. It’s the one with the post-coital campers.
Midway through Part Three, the story takes a little break from its main characters, as the Ogri, (vampiric monoliths which move with unnatural smoothness for large polystyrene blocks) depleted by a tussle with K9 (voiced by John Leeson) trundle off in search of, literally, fresh blood. They find it coursing through the veins of two campers, shacked up in a flimsy looking tent. Despite it being a cold looking night on the moor, the man (James Murray) is only half dressed, and emerges from the tent doing up his jeans. It’s pretty clear what he and his lady friend (Shirin Taylor) have been doing to keep warm.
We don’t get to meet our naughty campers for too long. One touch of the rocky Ogri and that’s the end of them. That’ll learn ’em for bumping uglies on a Saturday tea time family show. Still, this got me thinking about the show’s handful of other sly moments when characters have, it seems, been hard at it minutes before or after we see them. Oddly enough, a lot of them involve the Master. And death.
In the TV Movie, soon-to-be Master Bruce is sleeping shirtless on what should be a cold December night. He’s snoring his head off in the kind of deep sleep blokes succumb to post you-know-what. It’s driving his wife Miranda crackers. Then the Master in the form of a translucent snake forces its way into Bruce’s mouth, basically orally raping him. He’s a changed man; no snoring for a start, but also staring moodily out the window, showing off his muscly back. Miranda’s impressed and tries to entice him back to bed. But then he kills her. Stop being sexy in Doctor Who, people! It’s deadly.
The Master’s back at it in The Last of the Time Lords. His busy hands are all over trophy wife Lucy Saxon, so we know sex is on his mind. The specifically post coital bit is when he skips into the room holding the caged mini Doctor in a satin dressing gown and his hair all tousled. “Guess what?” he says, referring to having located rebel companion Martha, but I always think that’s actually short of for “Guess what I’ve been up to?!”. Like an excited teenager who’s copped off on school camp, and scooted back to brag about it to his mates. Luckily, this time no one dies. Though later on Lucy does shoot him, so again, no sex, please, we’re on Doctor Who.
The Master has one more occasion where he’s indulged in a spot of “guess what”. In The Time Monster Episode Five, he smooth talked his way into the affections of Queen Galleia. The sexual tension is obvious. By Episode Six, the old King’s been deposed and the Master’s the Queen’s new consort. What happens between episodes stays between episodes obviously, but the chemistry of mutual attraction when the two meet is swiftly replaced with a more comfortable rapport, which might suggest that the deed has been done between title sequences. Naturally enough, Galleia dies.
So what about the Doctor? Well in his David Tennant guise, he picks up girls quite regularly, but there’s only the occasional suggestion that things got serious. In The Girl in the Fireplace, he meets sexy Reinette, aka Madame Du Pompodour and they strike up a lighting fast romance. Reinette’s not one to muck around, and pretty soon she tells the Doctor that, “there comes a time, Time Lord, when every lonely little boy must learn how to dance.” And she drags him off to do just that. Now as we know from The Doctor Dances, dancing is writer Steven Moffat’s go to euphemism for sex, so when Reinette takes the Doctor by the hand and leads him away, we can safely assume the dancing’s of the horizontal kind. And of course, Reinette dies.
It’s a pretty dangerous pastime, this. Some writers obviously takes that old “no hanky panky in the TARDIS” rule very seriously. Still, love making doesn’t always prove fatal. Tennant’s Doctor once again gets lucky with a royal in The Day of the Doctor. In fact, his first appearance in that story, lying around sensuously feeding grapes to Elizabeth I, is inherently post-coital. But hooray, she survives! As a Who romance goes, it’s a saucy success, not even hampered by a pod of invading Zygons. What really spells this relationship’s doom is when she insists on getting married. Like so many other no good love rats, the Doctor does a runner shortly after the ceremony.
For post nuptial sex, we have to turn to Amy and Rory, the first couple to be confirmed to have done it on board the TARDIS (cue The Love Boat theme) after an episode called, with schoolboy smutiness,The Big Bang. (Was the deed done in the bunk bed mentioned in The Doctor’s Wife? Could be interesting, if cramped) In the next episode, A Christmas Carol, we find them interrupted while enjoying a little bit of role playing, as sexy Policewoman and bewildered Roman, in the honeymoon suite of a crashing spaceship. And as Rory never stops dying, we can assume they’re at it all the time between episodes.
But these things are never that simple, are they? What about in the space between Day of the Moon and The Almost People, when the Amy in the TARDIS was in fact her Flesh avatar. Did Rory, um, notice any difference? Surely they must have been intimate together at some stage because, you guessed it, she dies! With this long line of precedent, any debate about whether Clara and Danny Pink consummated their relationship must have disappeared when he got hit by that car.
Anyway, maybe I should quickly say something about The Stones of Blood. I don’t want you think that I’ve become obsessed with the sex lives of Doctor Who characters to the exclusion of all else.
So. The Stones of Blood. It’s good. Scary, funny. It’s got a lady painted silver in it.
Hey, what about Roger and the footman in The Unicorn and the Wasp? They sneak off twice to do it in that episode. And again, one of them dies!
LINK TO The God Complex: both have hidden spaceships.
NEXT TIME… Oh, let’s just be mysterious and say it’s one of the stories mentioned above.
And, in ‘The Doctor Falls’when Missy is inappropriately close to The Master… he looks down and says “Is it wrong that I…”
“Yes. Very wrong”..
And she dies….
It was inevitable those two were going to flirt outrageously! I don’t think the actually did it… although they looked quite relaxed leaning against those sone walls…
I’ve always found this to be one of the most unusual scenes of the classic series. I don’t think there’s a scene like it in any other story. People always talk about the horror element of the stones drinking the blood from the campers. But they forget how odd it is to see a shirtless man step out of a tent, fasten the button on his pants, and then his female companion sticks her head out. Considering all the guff the show got from Mary Whitehouse and BBC Executives, I’m surprised this scene wasn’t censored!
I know, it’s so out of character for the show. But then, where would Doctor Who be without these occasional narrative surprises?