Well that was a whole lot of fun really! The Doctor assembled a rather mixed up ‘gang’ for this adventure, Amy and Rory and his dad, plus Nefertiti and big game hunter John Riddel. There were robots with bad attitude, the opportunity to ride on a triceratops chasing a golfball – and then there was the crusty old guy called Solomon, who lacked a lot of wisdom. (Did you catch the biblical reference to Solomon knowing he shouldn’t go after Egyptian women?) Solomon was a ruthless trader who would stop at nothing to bring home the goods that would make him rich. But was that good cause to finish him off?
Telegraph reviewer Gavin Fuller says: “As the story drew to a close, the Doctor effectively acted as Solomon’s executioner, ensuring he was on his spaceship when it was sent to its fate as a diversion for incoming missiles. This showed a harsher side to the Time Lord’s character; yes it is not the first time he has knowingly been responsible for someone’s death and Solomon was probably getting his just desserts, but given the Doctor’s ethical stance, such instances can sit uneasily within the viewers.”
I must say it did jar with me too, when those missiles hit Solomon’s spaceship. This is the type of thing that got the Doctor in lots of trouble before, with Rose and Martha and Donna. Yet here he wasn’t even reprimanded or remorseful. Was he?
I suppose that is the lot of the Doctor at times. . . making hard choices which are seemingly ‘bad’, for the sake of the greater good, the bigger picture, that only he can see. His hard choices bring rescue and safety and deliverance – to all our favourite characters!
This reminds me of the judgement which God exerted against the ungodly and downright wicked nations in the past (Old Testament era). Like the Doctor He did give them the chance to know Him and get on his good side, so to speak! They had a choice to follow the one True God or go their own way. In rejecting Him they took responsibility for their demise.
And this compassionate God, has now chosen to rescue us through judgement, the death penalty passed against His Son on the Cross. He was declared guilty, in our place – that we might be saved and have new life in Him. Salvation through judgement is the recurring pattern we see in all of God’s story to us.
Perhaps this Doctor has been reading along.
Ps. Since posting this I was reminded of Solomon’s evil in wiping out the Silurians – oops!