While preparing for a midterm exam in one of my classes, I was researching the Fisher King, referenced in T.S. Eliot's poem, The Waste Land. As I typed "Fisher King" in to Google, I saw a suggested search for "Fisher King Doctor Who." Since I am a Doctor Who fan, I decided to check it out.

Apparently, the Fisher King is from an episode titled Before the Flood. I looked at this page hoping to find some answers, but unfortunately, nothing was listed stating that it was a reference.

Could someone with more knowledge than I shed some light on the subject? For the record, I do not know very much about the revived Doctor Who series, as I am a fan of the old one, and have not seen any of the new ones yet because I am still working my way through the original.

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    Is the Fisher King referenced by The Waste Land the same one from Arthurian legend? – OrangeDog Oct 10 '16 at 12:32
  • Or from C.S. Lewis' That Hideous Strength? – Matt Gutting Oct 10 '16 at 12:32
  • @OrangeDog My professor did not really go in to detail about the origins of the one reference in The Waste Land. I will ask him. – DavidB Oct 10 '16 at 12:34
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    It sounds like this is the work that you're supposed to be doing. Then you can come write a really good answer to this question when you're finished :) – OrangeDog Oct 10 '16 at 12:35
  • @MattGutting I have never read That Hideous Strength so I am afraid I cannot answer that. – DavidB Oct 10 '16 at 12:36

To make a long story short, the concept of a Fisher King dates back to Arthurian Legend and shows up in many different pieces of media, sometimes explicitly referenced by that name and sometimes by the concept that there is a tie between the ruler and the realm, whether it's about righteousness or health.

As per the wiki article you linked, the name of the character may refer to the concept of the Fisher King as impotent, needing rescue by the people he rules so that he can restore them.

The Fisher King was a figure in Arthurian legend. Having been wounded, the legendary king waits for someone who is able to heal him to arrive. This is similar to the Doctor Who character who is waiting for someone from his people to come and save him.

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