Judging by the state of my inbox, you all are very interested to hear about my opinion regarding whether “Kill the Moon” is anti-choice. I’m addressing this issue separately from my main review of the episode simply because the conversation is beginning to get very heated and I wanted to jump in before I could complete a full episode review. So let’s cut to the chase: I don’t believe that “Kill the Moon” is anti-choice.
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This is interesting. Most of my dash is pro-choicers who think the episode had a pro-life message. Then there are pro-lifers who agree that it’s pro-life. I’ve also heard people who are basically pro-life but grudgingly accept choice in very limited cirumstances say it’s pro-choice, for what I consider the wrong reasons (to paraphrase, “because Clara gets to make a choice, and it’s agonizing and scary just like it should be”). But this is the first time I’ve heard a pro-choice person who thinks the episode is pro-choice. And I’m surprised by how plausible I find this argument.
The story doesn’t provide a perfect analogy for the abortion situation, so there can be more than one interpretation that makes sense, depending on where you want to stretch things to make them fit.
You can fit the story to the abortion analogy by saying that Earth represents the pregnant person whose safety may be endangered by the pregnancy/birth. In fact, the Earth was already suffering disasters before the creature was born. Clara took it upon herself to save the creature, despite the wishes of everyone on Earth (never mind how they made a unanimous decision in such a short space of time), and she was congratulated for doing the right thing - that is, preventing choice.
I went with the “it’s a pro-life message” reading because of that, and because of the way the “innocent, baby” nature of the creature kept being stressed. I interpreted Clara’s anger at the Doctor as being caused not so much by him withholding information as by him letting her choose, because she almost chose “wrong” - it was like the narrative was saying that mere (female) humans shouldn’t be entrusted with such decisions. I had tremendously mixed feelings when Clara read the Doctor the riot act, because out of all the things she should have been calling him on all season, this is the one she chose?
If she’s angry at the Doctor for withholding information, that makes more sense. But where it doesn’t quite fit the abortion analogy is that he doesn’t withhold information in order to steer her toward the decision he wants; he does it to test whether she will make the “right” decision without steering. (And depending on how much you take him at his word, he does say beforehand that there are areas he can’t predict; he only says afterward that he thought it would be okay to let the creature live, not that he knew.)
Anyway, fascinating discussion.