Q:I've never been a huge Astrid fan, in fact she's probably one of my least favorite of the one-off companions, but you clearly love her a lot. So what makes Astrid so lovable to you? (And tell me more about all these parallels with Clara!)
um can we start with her ADORABLE FREAKING FACE AND BADASS BOOTS AND CUTE LITTLE LAUGH?
no? sorry, okay, I’ll leave Kylie out of this.
I love Astrid because she is the quintessential distillment of what this show is about. you rearrange Astrid, you get TARDIS, and believe me, that’s far from an accident. she signed onto Titanic getting the only job she could because she wanted to see the universe. Different ground beneath her feet. she doesn’t have much but she always makes the best of what she has to work with, and she never lets it stop her for aspiring to more. she dares to be brave. she fights for what she believes in.
she falls in love with the Doctor a little bit for the same reason we fell for him a lot a bit: because he’s wonderful. because he shows you a better way to live your life: that it’s okay to travel off the beaten path so long as you pave the way and make it easier for others to walk it behind you. because he’s dashing. because he cares.
and he falls in love with her a little bit too, because she’s the reason he’s still doing this, so many centuries later. because it doesn’t matter how many people he travels with, it’s different EVERY TIME. it’s ALWAYS a rush, it ALWAYS feel new, as long as they can embrace the wonder. Astrid was all about embracing the wonder.
I used to be able to rattle these off with FAR more ease, but here’s a list of parallels off the top of my head:
- Astrid getting proposed to by the diminutive cyborg Bannakaffalatta/Clara getting proposed to by diminutive alien king Porridge
- Astrid’s fall into the nuclear core/Victorian Clara’s fall from the cloud [and arguably echoed in her near fall in Journey to the Center of the TARDIS]
- the Doctor’s subsequent attempt to save Astrid from death via her floating particles on the transporter (“I’m falling. Stop me falling?”)/the Doctor’s subsequent attempts to rescue all Claras across time
- Astrid dying despite the teleporter trick/Oswin dying despite the teleporter trick
- Astrid becoming a waitress on the starliner Titanic to get off Sto and see the universe/Oswin becoming a Junior Entertainment Manager on the starliner Alaska to get off her home planet and see the universe (“Show me the stars”), Victorian Clara working as a barmaid
- Astrid surprising Ten with a kiss (adorably pulling up a crate to do so because short)/Victorian Clara surprising Eleven with a kiss (adorably pulling him down to do so because short)
- flirting! “You should see me in the mornings” “Okay”/ “I’ll be the judge of that” “Starting when?”
there’s more, hugs and shots and more general stuff, but I think those are the big ones
which is all to say— i love Clara Oswin Oswald, but a huge part of why I started loving her at first is because she reminded me of Astrid, and traveling with her was like finally getting the trips with Astrid that Ten never got to take
they are all my precious babies
I remember a man stopping me in Oxford Street
once, looking at me with absolute incredulity; he
couldn’t believe it. He said, ‘Tom Baker?’ A man in
his late thirties. I said, ‘Yes’. He said, ‘Tom Baker?’ I
said, ‘Yes!’ And he looked at me and in his brain he
catapulted back in time and he said, ‘You know, when I
was a boy, I was in a home for children; nobody wanted
us, you know? It was terrible. And you made Saturday
night good.’ And I went to say something to him and I
could see him so close to tears that he couldn’t speak.
And he shook his head as if to say, ‘Don’t go on, don’t
remind me’ and he just did [a thumbs up]. Such a
common thing, isn’t it, but suddenly backed up with
an expression on his face through his tears that was
a knighthood. It was a knighthood. Just thumbs up,
meaning it was great, and thanks. It’s incredible, isn’t
it? Just a gesture.