Now, I’m glad the Chinese government has no control over the BBC, as Doctor Who is back in just under a week, but they’re not happy about a sudden surge time travel’s popularity as a plot device. Censorship aside, I can see where they’re coming from – China can be rightly proud of its long history, and so using it as a backdrop to TV romances must be a bit galling, especially if they get the history wrong.
But a world without Quantum Leap, Back to the Future or, yes, Doctor Who would be a much poorer place; you could argue that China’s attitude to TV time travel is wrong-headed and that they should chill out and hope that the shows inspire interest in the nation’s history (want evidence for that? Watch Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure).
And yet there may be a more sinister reason for them not wanting to encourage an interest in time travel. There are some who say that the Vatican can already see into the past – who knows what else is out there…?
(Answer – probably nothing, but I did once receive an email from a time traveller, so you never know… )