I am a big fan of Doctor Who. I came in to the series with the 2005 revival, though the first bit of the show I ever saw was the very end of David Tennant’s run as the 10th Doctor (yes, my introduction to the show was the regeneration scene in End Of Time pt 2). However, I recognized from the moment I saw her in School Reunion, an episode of the 2006 series, that the character of Sarah Jane Smith was a very important person from the Doctor’s past.
Not even taking soulbonding into account here, as that adds a whole other dimension to this that I’m barely dealing with right now, let alone how I personally am feeling. However, this entry needed to be written.
Today, at age 63, Elisabeth Sladen, the actress who portrayed Sarah Jane Smith in all her numerous appearances on Doctor Who (old and new), and who starred in the aptly named Sarah Jane Adventures since 2007, passed away of cancer she had been battling for awhile.
When I read the news article, I cried. My stomach twisted and my heart hurt – all this for a person I’d never met in real life. With so much loss in my life recently, maybe it’s not surprising that I got this upset. With my bond of the Doctor, it certainly isn’t surprising. And I’ve been dealing with his personal memories all afternoon (remembering things you never watched is always strange – this is no exception). But for whatever reason, this has hit me very hard. It’s brought some quotes from the aforementioned episode of Doctor Who to mind, as well.
“Their lives are so fleeting… So many goodbyes. How lonely you must be, Doctor.” – Mr. Finch/Krillitane Leader, School Reunion.
But, perhaps most poignant, from the great woman herself:
“No. The universe has to move forward. Pain, and loss… they define us, as much as happiness or love. Whether it’s a world, or a relationship – everything has it’s time. And everything ends.” – Sarah Jane Smith, School Reunion
To paraphrase Ood Sigma… Sarah Jane Smith, your song has ended. But rest assured that the story never ends. You are beloved and missed by Whovians, young and old. Have fun in your new adventures.