The Time of the Doctor – the 2013 Christmas Special

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    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Hey all,

    I’m still betting on doppleganger Elevens – one “light side”, one “dark side” – with Eleven “dark side” as The Valeyard (he being the version of Eleven from the time-stream where Gallifrey did fall).

    Hoping River makes an appearance!

    Anonymous @

    Folks,  Some great theories posted here and the threads on what might happen are great.  However, let us all hope that the past eight years of the Doctor’s history isn’t torn up and thrown away by Steven Moffatt in TTotD.  In my view he has managed to downgrade the great work of Russell T Davies, although the Amy & Rory years wern’t too bad.  From the quotes in the Radio Times Steven Moffatt has said that some fundamental Dr Who myths AND STORIES will either be turned right on their head or completely re-imaged.   He even goes on to say we will find out that Matt Smith is actually Dr number 13.  What is going on???

    I’m going to be interested in how the issue of Doctor numbering is handled. In TDotD Peter Capaldi came flying in in his tardis announcing he is the 13th Doctor, which if this is the case will make Matt Smith number twelve, and David Tennant number eleven. On countback, David Tennant the 11th Doctor and he should then be the one to fall on the Fields of Trenzalore.  I think Moffatt wrote TDotD, so if he introduced Peter C as number 13 so he should recognise he has dropped off, and is he trying to cover up his drop off by making Matt S number 13?

    I hope on Christmas day we get better special effects that in TDotD – missed opportunities everywhere, and if the history of the past eight years is to be completely changed then let us hope it is explained effectively.  I have really enjoyed Dr Who since 2005 when it was re-introduction to our screens.  TDotD was average at best and as a celebration of 50 years of Doctor Who, an episode that should have been spectaculor, it was a great disappointment.

    I hope our licence fee will deliver a festive treat for us and that is has not been wasted on dancing programmes and Merlin Mk2 – sorry, I mean atlantis.

    Keep The Faith


    Anonymous @

    @RTDFan –  a list of the actors who’ve played The Doctor.

    1. William Hartnell
    2. Patrick Troughton
    3. Jon Pertwee
    4. Tom Baker
    5. Peter Davison
    6. Colin Baker
    7. Sylvester McCoy
    8. Paul McGann
    9. John Hurt
    10. Christopher Eccleston
    11. David Tennant
    12. David Tennant
    13. Matt Smith

    Why is DT listed twice? The Meta-crisis Doctor – creating him used up one of The Doctor’s regeneration cycles. Now, who was responsible for Meta-crisis Doc? Oh yes that’s right, RTD.

    The Time Lords would’ve been unaware of the existence of the Meta-crisis Doctor so when PC turns up, they would naturally assume that he was 13.

    Looks like Moffat has had his eye on the ball all along.

    A final thought on Steven Moffat. Don’t believe everything you read in interviews with him. He has a habit of giving false information in order to keep the real stories a surprise.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @fatmaninabox – you missed out Richard Hurndall, who reprised the role of the First Doctor after William Hartnell had died.

    The thirteenth actor to play the role of the Doctor is therefore John Hurt. Peter Capaldi will be the fourteenth actor to play the role.

    If you want to get deeply nit-picking, the Sixth Doctor was also played by two actors – Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy.

    The thing that’s really puzzling me about these meta-crisis rumours is that we already know the Smith Doctor has available regeneration energy – River’s bloody furious with him for using it on her wrist. And that was in a Moffat script – Angels Take Manhattan. So yeah, I do wonder if we’re being carefully directed up a blind alleyway. The problem is not that the Doctor’s run out of regeneration energy – the problem is that The-Doctor-Known-As-The-Eleventh dies.

    And the Smith Doctor knows that’s him. Which is why he’s okay with using some of that regeneration energy on the minor problem of a broken wrist – and why River is so angry with him; it shows that he knows.

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    @fatmaninabox @bluesqueakpip

    Does this mean I cannot include Peter Cushing, Rowan Atkinson, Richard E. Grant, Hugh Grant, Jim Broadbent, and Joanna Lumley?

    And let’s not forget the guy who was the robot version of the Doctor built by the Daleks in “The Chase”!

    Yes, I confess…now I am being silly.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @blenkinsopthebrave – I’m certain that there’s an alternate universe where Joanna Lumley played The Doctor (magnificently). Her Doctor also had an ongoing affair with Jonathan Pryce’s Master. 😉

    Edmund Warwick (Hartnell’s stand-in) doubled for Hartnell a couple of times, I believe, but never got an official ‘Doctor’ credit. He was credited for his work in The Chase, but as ‘Robot Dr Who’.

    Arbutus @arbutus

    Some great ideas here.

    @phaseshift     Oh, he’ll complain about the end when it comes, and is in no hurry to jump the queue, but actually seek it an extension? I doubt it somehow. It would put him with the crazy people.     Perfectly said. I agree that it the doctor seeking immortality or anything like it just doesn’t seem very “doctorish”.

    So it would be brilliant if he came to the end, suddenly regenerated and didn’t know why it happened.     I love this idea. Writers could have good fun working out the new Doctor’s first line!

    In the end, explosions, jokes, sad bits, and a roller-coaster ride of epic proportions are the reasons we all watch, aren’t they?  🙂

    @bluesqueakpip     Although this (on the other hand): There is, however, now one reason that he might well seek a new set of regenerations – the thought that he’s the only person who can find and release Gallifrey. That’s a much more mature reason; instead of wanting immortality for himself, he wants other people to live. They, however, can only live if he does…  is an excellent point! So here I am agreeing with both sides of the argument again.  🙂

    @blenkinsopthebrave     Unless I have missed a theory somewhere, I don’t see how the Time Lords can grant the Doctor a new cycle of regenerations when they are still trapped in the cup-o-soup. Wouldn’t he have to rescue them first? And then, there would no longer be a self-interested reason for them to keep him alive (or, for that matter, an altruistic reason for him to want to be kept alive).

    @devilishrobby     I agree that, after the introduction of the Sisterhood’s ability to influence regeneration, there is a strong possibility of it being used to get around the regeneration limit.

    @bluesqueakpip     The problem is not that the Doctor’s run out of regeneration energy – the problem is that The-Doctor-Known-As-The-Eleventh dies.  And the Smith Doctor knows that’s him. Which is why he’s okay with using some of that regeneration energy on the minor problem of a broken wrist – and why River is so angry with him; it shows that he knows.    Yes, I like this idea! It allows the prediction of “The fall of the Eleventh” some actual menace, rather than just the assumption that a “new man goes sauntering off”.

    wheels @wheels

    on the question of regenerations, i thought that the tennant regeneration back into himself using his hand wld be counted as another regeneration not the meta crisis doctor which came about with donnas help as the doctor did not use up any regeneration energy in the usual way ? as regards getting past the limit, i agree with others that the sisters of karn cld well be used as a way round this. i also had this theory that at some point during the time war the time lords wld have given themselves  a whole new cycle of regenerations to fight the war and maybe the doctor was one of those that recieved them .

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave


    I don’t see how the Time Lords can grant the Doctor a new cycle of regenerations when they are still trapped in the cup-o-soup. Wouldn’t he have to rescue them first?

    Well, I didn’t say it would be easy!

    However, let us suppose that the actions of the three Doctors in the 50th caused…the crack in the universe, that has been felt since the 11th Hour (in a timey-wimey way) and that the Time Lords are (have been) on the other side of that crack ever since the 11th Hour. They may well be in a cup-o-soup waiting to be discovered, but they may also be able to communicate through the crack.

    Also, remember back to The Doctor’s Wife when the Tardis left the universe, and the Doctor sensed Time Lords…lots of Time Lords?

    I think there might be ways. Moffat is, after all, the master of timey-wimey.

    ScaryB @scaryb

    Nice summing up and speculation by @phaseshift and @bluesqueakpip in particular.

    We’ve been saying since this forum started that we suspected we might see a mighty reboot his year.  I would not be at all surprised if we go back to the crack as @blenkinsopthebrave says. The thing I like most about Moffat’s reboots (so far!) is that everything changes and yet nothing has if you don’t want it to, and don’t look under the surface.  Very often it’s the viewers perception of the event/story that’s changed – Like the revelation that Clara is in fact a dalek in Asylum, or the timetraveller in Hide. Gallifrey turned out not to have burned, and yet it doesn’t affect any of the history or the Doctor’s motivation since 2005, as he doesn’t remember. (that’s his punishment for even considering pressing the button). But it does clear the decks for a new direction. Clara jumping into the Doctor’s timestream could change everything or nothing about the past.

    All the references that have been scattered throughout SM’s tenure – Phoenix/Isis/rebirth, memories, fairy stories, @bluesqueakpip‘s meta-textual readings, importance of children/families, the connections between River and Clara – I hope will come good. I’m hoping for River, and it would be nice to see @fatmaninabox‘s namesake again.  And yes – explosions! (well, if you’ve got a specially built exploding dalek, you really should use it, LOL)

    I also think it’s interesting that the Sisterhood were reintroduced so recently, particularly when McGann could just have straightforwardly regenerated into Hurt.  Will the potion have any effect re future regenerations? Will the Sisterhood intervene again (as @devilishrobby suggested) to keep the Doctor going so he can find the Timelords (for their own selfish reasons of course)?


    Rob @rob

    It’s all quite simple really, I don’t want to spoil it for anyone so I’ll post my theory on Boxing Day 😛

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    lol now thats what i call a cop out hehe


    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    Just a thought what if the McGann/Hurt regeneration doesn’t actually count as a regeneration as it has been carried out on a dead body. Though with some after thought i suppose its a bit like the Pertwee/Baker regen that needed a kick start by a fellow time lord after the doctors apparent death from radiation poisoning on Metabelius. i suppose the potion was the equivalent to the energy kick-start, but if it didn’t count as a proper regeneration then problem solved for now and the beeb don’t have to mess with who canon. of course this would only postpone the issue till the next regeneration.



    ScaryB @scaryb


    I’m thinking re the McGann/Hurt regeneration, with intervention by the Sisterhood, not so much that it doesn’t count, but that it sets a precedent. (And aided regenerations aren’t unknown – Pertwee as you mentioned, but also Troughton (tho that was kick-started rather than aided)).

    the beeb don’t have to mess with who canon

    I would doubt very much if the beeb have much idea what canon is (beyond timetravelling Doctor, police box, sexy companion(s), daleks, cybermen)  – never mind what Moffat’s just done to it, and what he may be about to do to it! 😀

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord


    Everything’s better with explosions.

    This is certainly true. I think Red Dwarf demonstrated this admirably by importing a Russian Tank into Jane Austen world and blowing stuff up. I think Ms. Austen would have approved.

    I like the fairytale analogy and:

    Which means the Doctor’s story is one of ‘Voyage and Return’. We’ve spent the first fifty years watching the ‘Classic’ Doctors run away from Gallifrey; now we’re watching our new set of Doctors run towards it.

    Yep – if your going down the route of “we’re all just stories in the end”, why not go for one of the first ones, the “epic quest”. From a similar period to @blenkinsopthebrave s choice of viewing material, it took Odysseus 10 years to get back to Ithica, and that was practically round the corner compared to the Doctors potential hunt. I’m sure they can get another 50years out of his quest. 😉

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    @devilishrobby @blenkinsopthebrave @bluesqueakpip @arbutus @wheels @scaryb

    I think my post about the regenerations was more to do with the fact there are lots of things in the past that could have topped up his regenerations in one way or another that he’d not be fully aware of the consequences. He’s been exposed to numismatron (the source of the Sisters “technology”) in Brain of Morbius, Planet of Fire, and Night of the Doctor, for instance. He was rejuvenated in a Tachyon regenerator in The Leisure Hive. He’s been exposed to all sorts over the years in his travels. He’s had an uncertain amount of regeneration energy donated by River in Let’s Kill Hitler. He may be uncertain himself about his own regenerative powers, and with good reason. He’s done a lot more than most Time Lords.

    I think the problem with the “gets a new cycle” is that is just shifts the problem to the 26th Doctor, someone who isn’t even born yet. It’ll be interesting to see which route they go down.

    I’d firmly agree with the “There is no canon” argument. The only people who can really decide what is or is not canon are the creators, and they refuse to do so. It’s ironic that the single announcement the BBC made on “canon” was that the Doctor is immortal now (link to Guardian) when RTD wrote Death of the Doctor. Fandom basically said “NNNNNOOOOOOOOOO – 13 Lives Rule!” and refused to take a pronouncement on canon from the only people who can dictate it. It’s really funny really. 😀 I think the BBC have just thought – “ah bugger it, Stephen can you address this point on screen somehow?”

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord


    Hello! Irrespective of whether we get a dark doppelganger in the ep, can I ask if you will be gracing us with a final comprehensive look up guide to bow tie colours for Matt Smiths run after this episode? Such vital research must be discussed!

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Arbutus @arbutus

    @blenkinsopthebrave     They may well be in a cup-o-soup waiting to be discovered, but they may also be able to communicate through the crack.     Yes, that is certainly possible, especially when considering that the mystery woman in The End of Time was able to appear to Wilf.

    I agree with everyone who has pointed out that there are lots of possibilities for getting around the regeneration limit. @devilishrobby, I get the feeling, from Moffat’s various hints, that he is not interested in avoiding or postponing the issue. I think he wants to address it.

    @phaseshift     I think that’s really the truth about “there is no canon”. Even when the creators come out with a statement about something, if a sufficiently large part of fandom refuses to accept it, I’m not sure that it can be said to be canon anyway in a real sense. (The Doctor is half-human? Anyone?) And it’s hard to argue for canon in a 50-year program that has included so many different creators, and gone in so many different directions. “I have my canon, you have yours” works for me!


    Dr john @dr-john

    Watched repeat last night. Tom Baker told Mat Smith that the doctor will revisit some of the old favourite facers!!! Matt Smith is the last regeneration (13th). So… Peter Capaldi will regenerate back into the First Doctor… same clothes as Hartnell??? Any thoughts anyone?

    DiscoStupac @discostupac

    Hi all, first post so apologies if I’m rehashing. (I’ve been lurking intermittently for a while).

    Recently rewatching the first Matt Smith series I’ve been struck by a repeated phrase, used by Prisoner Zero and others (the Angels, the Saturnine mother in Vampires, maybe others I missed) in connection with the cracks in the skin of the universe.

    “The Doctor in the TARDIS doesn’t know…”

    Seems like an odd qualifier to me – is the TARDIS referenced to set him apart from other doctors in the universe? (Dr. Martha Jones, Dr. River Song and others)

    Or might it be an oblique reference to another Doctor, one who isn’t in the TARDIS?

    Might fit in with the theories on doubling etc. Apologies I’ve not been able to flesh this out any further yet.




    Anonymous @

    @discostupac – Welcome 🙂

    I’ll try to answer your question over on the music thread 😀

    Whisht @whisht

    Hi @discostupac – welcome!

    That’s a lovely spot! Indeed goes well with others’ here that there’s doppelgangeriness happening!

    Nice first post!

    And please cover your ears when you listen to @fatmaninabox ‘s musical reply. Though not actually a spoiler, its bad enough to turn milk!


    Dr john @dr-john

    Everyone knows that Matt will regenerate into a Capaldi . But what will Capaldi be. Could he go back to the First Doctor… lots of clues given. Tom Baker told Matt in the Day of the Doctor that he would revisit a lot of the old favourite faces!!!! This is the  13th regeneration, so … go back to No.1. The First doctor was not in the line up at the end of the Day of the Doctor… he was in the centre behind the rest. So will Capaldi be dressed like the First doctor with his mannerisms? And Capaldi might have given a few clues when he was announced on TV… some of his mannerisms were def. the First doctor… So does Christmas day return to No.1????

    thommck @thommck

    Moffat has said both that
    A) Numbering is irrelevant, it’s something we [the viewer] have put on to the Doctor
    B) Matt is the 13th Doctor
    He also has made lots of references to Matt being Doctor 11 in the show, through other people calling him as such, “the 11th hour” reference and the #11 on his door in the God Complex.

    So I think we need to ignore everything that has been said and just enjoy what is revealed tommorow. It could literally be anything!!!

    A few other people get confused about this image from TDotD
    The Doctor Dreams
    This is actually Doctor Matt’s dream, which is why Capaldi isn’t there.

    The Valeyard is a bit of a spanner in the works. A dark doppelgänger could certainly fit the bill but I think it will be ignored. Maybe the Valeyard was actually from a future cycle of 13 Doctors?!?

    How about this for a bonkers theory (although I think some elements of this aren’t completely original, I forget)…

    Craig, from the Lodger, comes to help the Doctor and Clara.
    Doctor Matt get’s killed and Craig along with him. The Doctor doesn’t regenerate dies for good.

    The TARDIS takes Clara home but during the trip she hears crying. She wanders into the back rooms of the TARDIS and finds the Doctor’s old cot with baby Stormageddon in it! Craig had taken him along for the ride and kept him safe in the TARDIS!!!

    Nanny Clara adopts the baby, telling it stories of the Doctor. She can tell the baby his whole story because she is the only one who has seen all of it. As the baby grows he fills his walls with his drawings of these adventures.

    <insert Doctor Who – The Younger Years CBBC spin-off here>

    The episode ends 50 years later with Granny Clara dying and the grown-up Stormageddon opening a small blue box with a little key inside with some swirly circular writing around it

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    geoffers @geoffers

    @wolfweed – re: #23328

    “kids are bonkers with excitement…”  sums up this forum quite nicely! 😉

    ScaryB @scaryb


    “kids are bonkers with excitement…”  sums up this forum quite nicely!

    Sums me up, that’s for sure. I’m going to be wishing Christmas day away till it’s Time for the Doctor 😉

    @thommck Nice (11th hour, ha!) theory re Stormageddon

    Matt is the 13th Doctor

    that’s got me confused tho… I thought he’s either #11 or #12. I’ve missed a regeneration!! 😯

    Arkleseizure @arkleseizure

    @scaryb : It would seem that Tennant is both the 11th and the 12th. Greedy get. Even Tom didn’t get that. He should be at least four of them.

    I will add, if it hasn’t been said elsewhere (I’m sure it has, but still) that, according to The Brain of Morbius, the creation of the same production team as The Deadly Asssassin, that the Doctor is, as Matt, in his 19th incarnation, with Peter C as number 20.

    The point here being that, if the great Bob Holmes didn’t care about continuity, then why should anyone else?

    Craig @craig

    As this was a topic for speculation I’ve now closed it. I’m currently playing 3D Ludo with my niece and nephew but you can all start the conversation on the actual episode here:

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