S33 (7) 14 – The Name of the Doctor

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    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    I’m afraid everyone is missing the clue in plain sight with John Hurt.

    He has a beard.

    Yes people – the Dark Doctor has always been the Master. Conjoined twins in the nexus spiral of time, endlessly fighting for supremacy when one leads, inevitably towards another. An ouroboros of hate eternal.

    Bow down before the goatee ye mortals, and despair.

    Sorry – I’m still feeling a little bit giddy. 😀

    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    @scaryb– yes, off the top of my head, but on this site we had the theories:

    This Clara was the original, pre-impossible Clara.

    There was something about that leaf hitting her father so that her parents met.

    Clara gets scattered through time, made into multiple versions

    ‘Clara’ as a kind of guiding influence on the Doctor (for some reason.)

    Galactus @galactus

    @bluesqueakpip @miapatrick Hmm, coming round to the idea of John Hurt being the Zero incarnation, the one whose actions first caused him to flee Gallifrey and assume the name of Doctor. That would certainly be an easier concept for non Who obssessives (I know! Apprently there are some, though) in the casual viewing audience to get their heads around for the 50th anniversary special than needing a detailed knowledge of the events of Trial of a Timelord. Which blows my 12th incarnation, pre -Valeyard theory out of the water. Right, I’m going to have to go and watch it again. Right now.

    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    @phaseshift  Well that would fit the doppleganger foreshadowings to the 9th degree 🙂

    Moo. @moo

    If the John Hurt character doesn’t have the name The Doctor. Then is he not classed as the 9th Doctor. So when they describe Tennant as the 10th Doctor and Smith as the 11th Doctor its actually true. But John was the 9th Incarnation? He just wasn’t considered the 9th Doctor.. if you understand my meaning.

    Whisht @whisht

    so, is Hurt the Doctor in the same way that the Valeyard is the Doctor?

    ie if The Doctor is a title of “[galifreyan called x]”, then is Valeyard and Hurt also aspects of “x”?

    oh, I don’t know and I don’t care much(!) – I just LOVED this and looking forward to much more of this!!
    elated that JLC is here for next year (she’s smart and that makes her as attractive as her physicality) and really hope that Smith stays (unlikely that he’d transform into Hurt lets face it!).

    hm, still not really giving much in terms of thinking…… erm…..

    nice echo of “I’m not scared of graveyards”

    Galactus @galactus

    @phaseshift Hang on. I have a beard. Does that mean I’m secretly the Master? That would explain my tendency to spend breakfast plotting how to take over the galaxy.

    stevethewhistle @steve-thorp

    I do like the idea that the birth name of The Doctor is irrelevant. The meaningful name is the one that he gave himself, with all the promises and responsibility that goes with it. I think that this fits in well with series 5 to 7. This would also, I think, apply to The Master.

    However, I like the idea (posted on the Grauniad) that the name his mother called him was *Sweetie”. After all, it’s the name that his wife calls him.


    Timeloop @timeloop

    @Juniperfish Nice greeting =D

    I agree with @Morbius and others. That John Hurt must be the 9th incarnation. Which makes perfactly sense to me for a huge fifties-episode (war and all).

    @ardaraith She says “I was mentally linked with Clara” To me that sounds like her final exit – she let go.


    Whisht @whisht

    @galactus – I thought the galaxy was your breakfast?


    Timeloop @timeloop

    @theoriginal9321 I have seen that as well. It either means:

    1.the Tardis never changes interrior again
    2. the death of the Doctor is close
    3. There is a telepathic network that makes you see what you want to see
    4. This is part of the malfunction of the dying tardis
    5. All of the controllrooms still exist (as said in tWotD) and this is just the one were his timeline is kept. Maybe there is more to discover in this tardis about the Doctor… Maybe the interior of the 11th hour is were all his appearences are shown to “visitors”

    Galactus @galactus

    @whisht Ha ha! Touche 🙂

    stevethewhistle @steve-thorp

    Clara could still be the daughter of The Doctor and River.

    Note that the Scottish dialect pronunciation of “daughter” is “doctor”. 🙂

    Laura @laura

    Very pleased with that one! So glad that Clara didn’t turn out to be Susan or Jenny or anything ‘obvious’. Very clever, yet very simple way of explaining the impossible girl. And don’t get me started on John bloody Hurt! Great stuff.
    How on earth are we going to wait til November for the big one?!

    Anonymous @

    Well, the clip of the last few minutes of the episode is also up on the website — I imagine that it will be much rewatched over the coming months.

    I think there’s enough there though to knock out the idea of the Hurt Doctor as some kind of pre-Hartnell incarnation. The ‘what I did, I did in the name of sanity etc’ suggests to me that he is the Time War Doctor. That makes him somewhere between McGann and Ecclestone. Also the line from Matt about him ‘breaking the promise to be the Doctor’ suggests that he belongs somewhere in the time stream after the Doctor first took his name. Again that leads me to place him in the Time War era.

    It’s possible that he could be a future Doctor, of course. Or even the Valeyard. There’s no reason why the Doctor wouldn’t recognise even one of his future incarnations. And this might explain why Clara didn’t recognise him.

    Phew. This one could run and run, couldn’t it?

    Timeloop @timeloop

    Hello again Gang (@Copyright/TM by @Juniperfish I really like it)

    To further support Hurt is the 9th Doctor: Eleven already knows about him and what he has done. He is not bemused by him or curious. That might have been what the mental block was about. The ninth incarnation is his secret he does not want to be associated with him(self…?)

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord


    That would explain my tendency to spend breakfast plotting how to take over the galaxy.

    Ah …well met, my fellow traveller on the road to conquest. You will be delighted to know I have spread the word of the doings of the Machiavellian Genius Society(Yorkshire Section) on the Guardian. Which section do you belong to? 🙂

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    The Whispermen are riffing off Judge Death – Hurrah!

    ‘The crime is life, the sentence is death!’

    ardaraith @ardaraith

    @timeloop – yes, I don’t think we’ll see Alex Kingston again, but that “spoilers” has me thinking. River was twisted, by the silence, to be, “the girl who kills the Doctor,” when her original mandate was, ” to save the Doctor.” They both say they have seen all his faces – Clara was even in Gallifrey! She says she has been born in many times, and many places. Where else would an impossible astronaut, er, I mean girl, be born but to a couple who conceived her on the TARDIS?

    i love @craig ‘s idea of Zero!!!!!!!

    (looks around to see if it’s safe) squeeee!

    BadWulf @badwulf

    Were there any clips of 8? Could Hurt Doctor be an aged 8, who no longer looks like Paul McGann?

    Whisht @whisht

    oh, Smith knows what Hurt did, he just hates what he did.

    Haven’t we all done something we regret?

    But he hates that history remembers that what he did, is remembered as being done by “the Doctor”, the persona that he’d rather be, and be remembered for.

    Anonymous @

    Also has Moffatt now rather cleverly unwritten the entire continuity of the show? Now that the Great Intelligence has leaped into all points of the Doctor’s timeline, even if the damage has been, er, un-rewritten thanks to Clara, does that mean that every previous adventure of the Doctor didn’t happen quite in the way that we have previously seen it?

    I’m guessing this is why the Doctor couldn’t remember the Great Intelligence in The Snowmen. Because the GI had succeeded in erasing itself from the Doctor’s memories. Or because those adventures had unfolded differently thanks to Clara’s presence. I’m guessing this is the sense in which this story was a ‘game changer’. The entire history of the show could theoretically be subtly different now.

    I remember seeing Moffatt interviewed when he just took over as showrunner and saying that there was something that he phoned up RTD to ask if he thought it was OK if he did it. I’ve always wondered what it could be but I reckon that this is it.

    HolyMackerel @holymackerel

    Who remembers this? www.youtube.com/watch?v=1TUOPeNJCK8

    I loved that advert. I think Moffat did too.

    Sorry I haven’t worked out how to add links here but if you cut and paste it should work.

    Also could someone tell me how to add links?

    stevethewhistle @steve-thorp

    Is The Doctor now established as the most time-travelled being in the Universe?

    stevethewhistle @steve-thorp

    Or can meta-history be unwritten?

    ardaraith @ardaraith

    @jimthefish – that was my thought, as well. That because of this moment, with the GI and Clara, everything from the past has changed.

    Timeloop @timeloop

    @HolyMackerel Just add the entire link with http etc

    @ardaraith I think we can still see her. Just doing things she has done before tNotD

    ANd we still dont know WHYYYYYY the doctor said his name to River. Or when

    Galactus @galactus

    @phaseshift Ah, this could get tricky. I’m a member of the Lancashire chapter. The Great Time War may pale into insignificance if we decide to go head to head on the great battle grounds of the Pennines in a bid for world domination. Perhaps some sort of treaty is in order 😉

    topperofgallifrey @topperofgallifrey

    What Doctor is John Hurt? If he is even a Doctor.

    BadWulf @badwulf

    If he’s not “The Doctor”, then why was he identified as the Doctor on screen?

    topperofgallifrey @topperofgallifrey

    One of my theories was that he was the same timelord but didnt change his name. Please don’t laugh. I have a mental illness which stops me from thinking properly.

    chickenelly @chickenelly

    He has a beard.
    Yes people – the Dark Doctor has always been the Master. Conjoined twins in the nexus spiral of time, endlessly fighting for supremacy when one leads, inevitably towards another. An ouroboros of hate eternal.
    Bow down before the goatee ye mortals,and despair.

    Aaaah that explains Noel Edmonds and Paul Hollywood.  I knew there was something up with those two.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    So – I reckon the bonkers theory that Clara is a double bluff is still a goer. In fact, even my bonkers theory that Clara is a future Doctor is still a goer. 🙂

    Of course, all this could be caused by her ‘impossible’ nature leaking back into the Original Clara but:

    If you are still entertaining the idea that you are an exception to this rule, ask yourself one question: what is his name.

    Clara knows the Doctor’s birth name. The TARDIS made sure she knows it. Why? She has no need to know it. But the TARDIS sees her as ‘an exception to this rule’.

    The telepathic circuits are awakening memories you shouldn’t even have.

    But she has them. Hidden – but she remembers everything about Journey ttCotT. The TARDIS also made sure she saw the History of the Time War.

    And then River says:

    If she’s really dead, how can I still be here?

    There are two people throughout who always see and hear the dead River. One is Clara, the other is the Doctor.

    Both the Doctor and Clara can survive going into the Doctor’s own time-stream.

    And finally:

    There’s only me here. That’s the point.


    Whisht @whisht

    Can’t wait to hear @htpbdet‘s thoughts (whether i agree or disagree I enjoy hearing them)

    Hope you get here soon (health is more important than anything, but we have health to enjoy stuff, so hope you’re able to get here soon).

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord


    I think we need to be pragmatic here. A firm handshake, and split the universe across the pennines as we launch our fiendish plans!


    Aaaah that explains Noel Edmonds and Paul Hollywood

    Ah …. you’ve met my “whispermen”?


    Me too. I really hope @htpbdet enjoyed that.

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    Many welcomes to new members as well. Nice to see you dive in.

    Galactus @galactus

    Just finished watching again. The GI talks of ‘the slaughterer of the ten billion’. I assume that this is the John Hurt incarnation, and I’d be surprised if the Timelords had let one of their own responsible for this level of genocide simply adopt a new name and roam around time and space. I’m therefore swinging away from the Zero Doctor theory and back toward him being the Time War or the pre-Valeyard incartion. We don’t know anything, do we? My brain hurts.

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Liking Dr Who gets you into some strange & embarrassing situations sometimes.

    For instance , today I bought the Sun newspaper (for the Who article).

    ‘It’s not for me, honest. It’s for my dark nemesis…’

    Galactus @galactus

    @phaseshift A sensible approach, sir. We’ll split the Pennines down the middle. I’ll have everything in the universe to the west of them. You can have everything to the east.

    Galactus @galactus

    It appears my brain hurts so much I’ve forgotten how to spell ‘incarnation’.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    So, are we temporarily dubbing John Hurt The Nth Doctor?

    SatsumaJoe @satsumajoe

    @bluesqueakpip Clara knows the Doctor’s birth name. The TARDIS made sure she knows it. Why? She has no need to know it. But the TARDIS sees her as ‘an exception to this rule’.

    I do like the theory, especially the final bit, but wouldn’t she recognise River? Unless… some Chameleon Arch type thing?

    Bobbyfat @bobbyfat


    to me, it seems that the John Hurt Doctor can’t be one of the existing 11, specifically the time wars doctor, because “our” doctor freely admits to his part in the time war, “i’ve killed them all” so it couldn’t be his deepest darkest secret – 11 talks about future as well as past events existing in his timestream so that leads me to think Hurt is a future doctor, and given the specific mention of the valeyard that could well be where its heading…

    but i guess we wont know for sure until moff opens up the hurt locker for us…

    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Right, while @phaseshift and @galactus are carving up the universe, let’s think about Clara.

    We now know that she suggested to Hartnell’s Doctor which TARDIS to steal. We also know, from The Doctor’s Wife, that the TARDIS stole her thief. Ergo – Clara is either a manifestation of the TARDIS or is psychically linked to the TARDIS. We already know she is psychically linked to River.

    River, the TARDIS and Clara are all connected therefore.

    River is a child of the TARDIS, that much we know. I don’t think Clara is her daughter or granddaughter, not from the way River interacted with her at the seance table. She is, surely, the creation of River and the TARDIS working together to save the Doctor.

    On whether John Hurt is Doctor Zero or the Valeyard (who comes between incarnations Twelve and Thirteen?) or the Time War Doctor (between Paul Mcgann and Ecclestone) or the “real” Eleven, with “our” Eleven as Twelve, we don’t know. I think Time War Doctor seems like a good bet, but what do I know 🙂

    Check ou “Tracks of My Tears” which I’ve posted on the music thread if you are a soul who wants to cry about River and the Doctor a little more…

    NB Oh, @topperofgallifrey Welcome – that summary of speculation on which Doctor John Hurt is was for you!


    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @satsumajoe – yeah, that’s another funny thing. The Doctor has never (until this episode) mentioned River since the beginning of The Snowmen – and later says that it hurts too much for him to acknowledge her existence.

    So when did he tell Clara about her? It wasn’t on-screen.

    Clara could have been politely lying, of course, (probably was) but then she says ‘I never realised you were a woman’. Later she’s talking to the Doctor as if he’s never told her about River. ‘So who was she? The lady with the funny name and the space hair.’

    So Clara associates the name ‘Professor Song’ with someone of the opposite sex to her.

    Galactus @galactus

    @juniperfish Someone on the Guardian blog pointed out that if Clara was present on Gallifrey to point the Doctor towards the ‘right’ TARDIS to steal, then it would suggest there’s a Timelord version of Clara. Which would be interesting, as she’d presumably have the ability to reincarnate. I’m not so sure about the idea of Clara being a creation of the TARDIS and River. If so, why would the TARDIS be so apparently antagonistic towards her? Why would it stop the Doctor landing at Trenzalore if it already knew it had created Clara to save him and, indeed, to point him towards stealing it in the first place? I think the mystery of Clara is what we’ve seen tonight. I think her various versions in history know what to do to point the Doctor in the right direction based on her exposure to his timestream. I’m not sure there’s anything more to it. I think we’ve now moved on to the mystery of the Doctor himself. Which is how it should be for the 50th anniversary.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @juniperfish – Clara’s definitely not ordinary, is she? I mean, beyond leaping into time streams. And River does seem to have an ‘it’s you’ reaction; as if she still knows certain spoilers.

    Galactus @galactus

    One last thought before I call it a night and really have to stop thinking about this (otherwise I’m not going to sleep tonight). Do we think that perhaps the 50th anniversary special may end up undoing the events of the Time War to save the soul of the Doctor who cannot name himself Doctor? A full return of the Timelords and the Dalek Empire? Just throwing that one out there. Goodnight, all. Happy musings.

    TheOriginal9321 @theoriginal9321

    @timeloop Thanks, all that could make sense I guess.

    Also another query, it is implied that this doctor  is quite old and is the one that takes River to the Singing Towers or whatever they were and gives her his sonic. So is the Doctors sonic really all that advance by now though?

    I know it doesnt look the same as Rivers in the Library but he might have made some alterations to it while giving her, in fact it looked like as though he had made it himself rather than the TARDIS making it as it was quite, dont know the right word but ‘Tacky’ not in a bad way.

    And we have seen him turn it Red, but I remember Rivers could do more, a bit like Captain Jack’s Sonic blaster I recall. Can the Doctor’s sonic do all that? Have we seen him use the sonic that way?

    And in one or two scenes his sonic does appear blue but I was guessing thats more to do with editing and stuff and not the plot, but who knows maybe he can switch between green, red AND blue and so could River.

    Timeloop @timeloop

    @galactus Wasnt the mother of the Doctor human? So there were exeptions. She does not have to be a timelord

    @juniperfish “We already know she is psychically linked to River.” Why you think that? @Reaction to Clara River lies.

    Welcome to everybody new =)

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