"Everybody lives Rose! Just this once, everybody lives!"
- the Ninth Doctor, The Doctor Dances
|Don't cry, you'll be back soon.|
The main reason that the exit worked so well was that it was just that, an exit. Lost forever, never to be seen again. Fans who had only started watching the show from the revival had lost the first companion they'd ever know. But then, two years later, Partners In Crime showed a brief glimpse of Rose on a screen. Oh. Then in Turn Left, Rose returned for another series finale. As nice as it was to see Rose again, it kind of reduced the trauma from her initial exit. At the end of Journey's End, she once again wound up 'trapped forever' in the parallel universe. Only this time, that fate was less worrying. It took a lot of "No, this time you actually ARE trapped" and even then we know how the show runners like to bend the rules, so we now bid more of a 'bye for now' to Rose Tyler.
|The many deaths of Rory|
Think about the 2005 episode Dalek. The reason that episode works so well is because it's one Dalek that wipes out most of the staff. It electrocutes and exterminates them and it makes you think "Jeez, this Dalek means business." As the death count rises, you realise the Dalek has no mercy, so when it gets to the point where it's about to kill Rose, you fully believe - and expect - it to kill her. Some deceased characters have stayed dead, and the death has been all the more impactful for it. Think of Adric, Jabe (The End of the World), Gwenyth (The Unquiet Dead), Lynda (The Parting of the Ways), Chantho (Utopia), Adelaide Brooke (The Waters of Mars)... all of their deaths meant something. If Adelaide had come out of the house and said "Only joking, I'm not really dead" it would have spoiled the whole moment.
Moffat stated that the idea of killing of Osgood in Death in Heaven was to show how crazy the Master was by killing off a much loved character. It had great effect. Many were saddened by the loss of such a great character. But now she's back. Although we don't know how or why yet, I'm sure there's going to be quite a few theories thrown around as to how she survived. Was the Master's blast a teleport? Will Osgood be a Zygon? They may have kept her print from Day of the Doctor. Is Osgood Captain Jack's daughter and she can't die either? Who knows, stranger things have happened. I'm sure Moffat has got something clever up his sleeve... at least I hope he has.
Although most of this article has been opposed of the idea, I'm not altogether against bringing characters back. Sometimes it can work. The basic premise of the show is time travel, so there is a certain freedom to revisit characters. Take River Song for instance. River dies in her first episode, but we had a number of adventures with her afterwards due to the Doctor meeting her at different points in her timeline. So it can work, but it needs to be done right, with a strong rationale for bringing them back and a plausible explanation for how they return.
So there you are. Those are my thoughts on bringing back characters, but what do you think? Should the dead stay dead? If not, who would you like to see return from beyond the grave? Let us know in the comments below.