The tryanny of the canon

Via Stuart, I’ve spent the last half hour reading a long and eloquent piece about the concept of show ‘canonicity’, with special attention to the concept around a show like **Doctor Who**:

> We’ve moved from a canon which didn’t exist because nobody got round to establishing one, to a canon which doesn’t exist because the only person who could establish one himself rejects both the idea and the very logic of writerly authority on which it stands.
>
> While this is going on, the TV series itself is making direct and explict reference to events, concepts, continuity points, planets, companies and foodstuffs from the novels and comics while establishing that Time is in flux (The Unquiet Dead) and that stable facts aren’t meant to exist (Utopia). Which means that if there was a Doctor Who canon (and assuming the Welsh Series was part of it) then it would paradoxically include the fact that there was no Doctor Who canon.

With quotes not only from Russell T Davies but new showrunner Steven Moffat, TV episode writer Paul Cornell and tie-in novel authors Paul Magrs and Lance Parkin, it’s a powerful argument against the type of rigid thinking that has no place, not only in the Doctor Who universe, but in fiction in general.

_[Teatime Brutality: Canon and Sheep Shit: Why We Fight](http://teatimebrutality.blogspot.com/2009/07/canon-and-sheep-shit-why-we-fight.html)_

Author: Scott Matthewman

Formerly Online Editor and Digital Project Manager for The Stage, creator of the award-winning The Gay Vote politics blog, now a full-time software developer specialising in Ruby, Objective-C and Swift, as well as a part-time critic for Musical Theatre Review, The Reviews Hub and others.