Saturday, March 30, 2013

Doctor Who-The Lazarus Experiment

      When the doctor arrives to return Martha to her London home only half a day after she left, they notice that her sister Tish is on the TV screen with a Professor Richard Lazarus, who insists that he has found the method for changing the face of humanity. The doctor decides to attend Lazarus's prestigious event, which Tish has organized, in order to see the Professors intent and to meet Martha's family as well. The Professor,an elderly man steps inside a chamber that the doctor recognizes as a hypersonic wave amplifier and after it almost overloads before the doctor unplugs the device,the Professor emerges appearing at least four decades younger. He exuses himself from the event with his business partner and lover,where without her knowledge he reveals he had been only using her for years and then suddenly transforms into a gigantic creature and consumes her.

                              As the doctor and Martha observe Lazarus's DNA is in an impossibly unstable state of flux, they run to discover his partner's death. By this time Lazarus is attempting to do the same to Tish. Luckily the doctor arrives and is able to allow her to witness the create Lazarus has become personally. Realizing this is a rejected stage of human evolution the doctor attempts to use the hypersonic device to reverse the process for the professor.  The plan fails and Lazarus escapes to the abbey where he once hid from the London Blitz. With Martha and Tish present the doctor uses the pipe organ in the abby to reverse the aging process in Lazarus which kills him,though naturally in the end. Before leaving, Martha insists that the doctor bring her along as a permanent companion before the answer phone in her home receives a message from her mother-a warning about the doctors destructive nature from a Mr. Saxon.

                         This story takes on the old tale of humanity trying to outrun aging and death. In the case of Professor Lazarus however,there is a twist. His reasons are not based in ego but rather in the fact that he has taken into his head that the whole of humanity's purpose is to outsmart the aging process. The doctor in turn reveals his own insecurities about his own life,knowing full well everyone around him in the moment are not the least bit aware of his own extremely advanced age. We also see the possessiveness and trauma Martha's mother faces as she comes to terms with her daughter making her own decisions-choosing a rather unpredictable life of adventure with the doctor rather than settling into a comfortable life on Earth.  Since this is a very similar dilemma as faced by companion Rose Tyler with her mother Jackie, Martha elects in the end to become an official companion on the doctor's future travels. 
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