50 Years of Dr. Who
November 23, 2013 5:38 PM   Subscribe

Well, most of the world has now seen the 50th Anniversary special of Dr. Who. And the reviews are starting to trickle in across the world. (Warning: Spoilers may be contained within reviews.) What was your take on this epic episode?

The CS Monitor got into the act with the the many loves of the Doctor while NPR explains what makes the series so resistant to time.

(And I say "epic" since it caused even the Great Google to Doodle about it.)
posted by docjohn (508 comments total) 47 users marked this as a favorite
 
I'm about ten minutes to the end of the rebroadcast and I am legit choked up.
posted by The Whelk at 5:41 PM on November 23, 2013 [10 favorites]


I just finished it. It was stupendous!
posted by painquale at 5:46 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I got slightly teary when all the doctors showed up all cathode-ray-ish, but I was really sad when it appeared that Capaldi won't be using his natural accent as the Doctor.
posted by maudlin at 5:49 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


[this seems like a big enough deal that a post-spoiler thread isn't a bad idea]
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 6:00 PM on November 23, 2013


GROSS SOBBING
posted by The Whelk at 6:01 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I quite enjoyed it, although I could probably play a better Elizabeth I.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:01 PM on November 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


I LOVED it. I like how McGann-Hurt-Eccleston was established with the cameo of #13 Capaldi.

Bonus treat: A funny spoof starring Peter Davison, Colin Baker, and Sylvester McCoy and their attempt to get on the 50th anniversary special
posted by Renoroc at 6:02 PM on November 23, 2013 [18 favorites]


Me: "Son, do you know who that grey haired man was?"
Son: "Um, yeah, why else would you be crying?"
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:04 PM on November 23, 2013 [15 favorites]


While I liked it, I didn't like the re-writing (again!) of Timelord history. I find the rebooted series seems to do that a lot more often than I personally would like to see.

But it was otherwise fantastic, and a great use of the three Doctors (and a fourth!).
posted by docjohn at 6:04 PM on November 23, 2013


Oh how I enjoyed Hurt speaking for the older Classic Who fans . oh how I enjoyed that so much.

" Oh god they get younger all the time."
posted by The Whelk at 6:05 PM on November 23, 2013 [16 favorites]


Me: "Son, do you know who that grey haired man was?"
Son: "Um, yeah, why else would you be crying?"


I knew it was coming and still let out an inhuman shriek.
posted by The Whelk at 6:05 PM on November 23, 2013 [8 favorites]


Guys guys guys guys, he/they solved all the conflicts without violence.

That's The Doctor to me, the thing that sets the series apart from the rest of most televisual sf/f.
posted by The Whelk at 6:06 PM on November 23, 2013 [35 favorites]


Holidays at Peter Davison's house must be SPECTACULAR.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:06 PM on November 23, 2013 [12 favorites]


It made me remember how much I loved David Tennant and Billie Piper. Man 10 was the best.

Sad No.9 didn't have anything to do with it, but I didn't expect him to.
posted by Windigo at 6:06 PM on November 23, 2013 [10 favorites]


Having only seen part of a single episode of Dr. Who, should I watch this or do I need to go watch some of the previous episodes?
posted by mulligan at 6:07 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


Renoroc: "Bonus treat: A funny spoof starring Peter Davison, Colin Baker, and Sylvester McCoy and their attempt to get on the 50th anniversary special"

I just noticed McCoy is wearing a Hobbit shirt.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:08 PM on November 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


I managed to remain completely unspoiled (and my expectations were mighty low) but I squeed, cried and thoroughly loved this episode. Now don't fuck it up Moffat! *shakes fist*
posted by Space Kitty at 6:09 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


The only moral quandary that hits us secular humanists in the heart these days seems to be the Trolley Problem. Everything else is too obviously and one sided.
posted by mikewebkist at 6:09 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


Mulligan, it leans pretty heavy on having a working knowledge and attachment to characters and plot lines from decades in the past so ...I don't think so.
posted by The Whelk at 6:09 PM on November 23, 2013


For those who need a link to watch the episode:

BBC One Page
posted by djseafood at 6:09 PM on November 23, 2013


Mulligan, it leans pretty heavy on having a working knowledge and attachment to characters and plot lines from decades in the past so ...I don't think so.

OTOH I've never seen more than a few minutes of any previous episode, and I enjoyed it. I'm sure I missed a lot, but it was still good.
posted by asterix at 6:11 PM on November 23, 2013


I am really, really happy about how they worked in Billie Piper. As opposed to what I though they were going to do with her.

And that cameo in the last five minutes (which I did not know about) made me legitimately sputter out, "wait. That's....it's...." when I heard the voice. And John Hurt's final line took a couple seconds to sink in - and then I laughed like a loon.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:13 PM on November 23, 2013 [10 favorites]


Having only seen part of a single episode of Dr. Who, should I watch this or do I need to go watch some of the previous episodes?

This episode is as good a starting point as any, enjoy!
posted by Renoroc at 6:14 PM on November 23, 2013


In fact, The Doctor went back in time and shot John Scalzi. That's why he's not tweeting. #Honest
posted by eriko at 6:14 PM on November 23, 2013


God every time I think I'm out of it Doctor Who DRAGS ME BACK IN
posted by The Whelk at 6:15 PM on November 23, 2013 [7 favorites]


Even the B-plot was fantastic. The Docs whipping out the Veil of Ignorance to solve the Zygon subplot was possibly the most genuinely clever solution of the Doctor's that I've seen.
posted by painquale at 6:16 PM on November 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


Guys I need to watch the episode eight more times right now
posted by pemberkins at 6:16 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Maybe Moffat is just trolling us with the numbering but can we all unite in agreement that McGann is still effing hot?
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:17 PM on November 23, 2013 [9 favorites]


We watched while drinking boddington's and eating chicken Korma with peas because we're THOSE kinds of fans.
posted by The Whelk at 6:17 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Previous threads.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:18 PM on November 23, 2013


It also confirmed all out fanwanking that the lighter, more childlike NuWho was the result of a willful desire not to confront A Horrible Past.
posted by The Whelk at 6:18 PM on November 23, 2013 [19 favorites]


Oh, and I spotted something on the second re-watch - in some scene when they're in the Black....Whatever? (I legitimately can't remember whether it's the Black Archive, the Black Room, or what - I remember it's black, that's it.) Every so often they had a scene with people standing around and talking in there, where you can catch glimpses of some of the clutter in the room around them. On the second re-watch, I saw that one of those bits of clutter were River Song's bright red pumps. Which just made me all happy.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:19 PM on November 23, 2013 [6 favorites]


And still it stands. They stand.

*Weepy-eyed because of that cameo, sniffle.*
posted by MonkeyToes at 6:22 PM on November 23, 2013


Gosh. Three open threads for the same thing.
Let's see if we can get one for EACH DOCTOR. I dub this the War Thread. :)
posted by Mezentian at 6:22 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


At least we know that in the future, people are still rocking the winged eyeliner.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:22 PM on November 23, 2013


It also confirmed all out fanwanking that the lighter, more childlike NuWho was the result of a willful desire not to confront A Horrible Past.

And now it doesn't need to be confronted because it's been retconned out of existence. (I rather enjoyed it until we got rid of half of the plot for 9 and 10.)
posted by jeather at 6:25 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I thought it was fun, and a lot less stupid than I thought it would be (after a terrifically stupid opening). Made me miss 10, though.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 6:25 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Mezentian: "Let's see if we can get one for EACH DOCTOR. I dub this the War Thread. :)"

We'll just get to the eighth thread only to have it abruptly closed.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:26 PM on November 23, 2013 [18 favorites]


A funny spoof starring Peter Davison, Colin Baker, and Sylvester McCoy and their attempt to get on the 50th anniversary special

Huh. McCoy seemed seriously pissed about not being in the special in an earlier interview.
posted by kmz at 6:26 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I saw that one of those bits of clutter were River Song's bright red pumps. Which just made me all happy.

Oh. A light just went on.
*sigh* I suppose I will have to re-watch it now.

Oh, and I spotted something on the second re-watch - in some scene when they're in the Black....Whatever? (I legitimately can't remember whether it's the Black Archive, the Black Room, or what - I remember it's black, that's it.)

The Black Archive. Sarah-Jane and the Brig broke into it back in an SJA episode. It was less secure then. I think it turned up in the books before that, because Torchwood wasn't enough of a secret, obviously.
posted by Mezentian at 6:28 PM on November 23, 2013


Huh. McCoy seemed seriously pissed about not being in the special in an earlier interview.

He's a master manipulator, playing you like a Russian plays chess.
posted by Mezentian at 6:28 PM on November 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


"...stuck between a woman and her box."
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 6:28 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I kinda want to go through all the scenes of the Black Archive to search for Easter eggs. A few seconds before the 49 minute mark, you can see that UNIT apparently decided that it was worth stealing River Song's shoes. And then, a few seconds later, there is the red pinwheel with white polka dots from Amy Pond's house.
posted by painquale at 6:30 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I was at the point that like Battlestar Galactica, I couldn't recommend Dr. Who to anyone in good conscience, but this wasn't bad and I have a fool's hope that more episodes of the same quality will come. I particularly like any sort of erasing of the nonsense we've had over the last few seasons. But Moffat sort of hinted at this possibility before when he took over the show, and it didn't happen. It would be wonderful if it did this time.

And now it doesn't need to be confronted because it's been retconned out of existence. (I rather enjoyed it until we got rid of half of the plot for 9 and 10.)

That was the highlight for me. The last half hour of this particular retconning was very welcome. That said, it won't last, and it won't mean anything, I fear.
posted by juiceCake at 6:30 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Liked: John Hurt, seeing David Tennant again, all the other Doctors, a redemption of the warrior-Doctor (even if it's a bit of a retcon), Tom Baker, Oswin seems to have actually grown a personality beyond "quirky genius girl", and NO RIVER FUCKING SONG.

Disliked: No Christopher Eccleston, that goddamned fez again, gimmicky memory-erasing security systems, and not one but two instances of "Geronimo".

Overall, I think it was better than Doctor Who has been in ages. I'm so looking forward to Peter Capaldi I can't tell you.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 6:36 PM on November 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


I saw that one of those bits of clutter were River Song's bright red pumps.

I saw those, too! And didn't stop to think about them! Awesome.
posted by Windigo at 6:36 PM on November 23, 2013


I don't think I've ever been prouder of my daughter as when, after I said, "Were those shoes?" She said, in her best know-it-all preteen voice, "Da-ad, they were River Song's shoes."
posted by Rock Steady at 6:36 PM on November 23, 2013 [26 favorites]


And now it doesn't need to be confronted because it's been retconned out of existence. (I rather enjoyed it until we got rid of half of the plot for 9 and 10.)

No way, they were very particularly not retconning it away - time can't be rewritten, but it never needed to be because this is how it's always happened and they just couldn't remember. So their guilt was still completely real because they remember it the same way as before - the Doctor goes off to use The Moment and then the Daleks and Time Lords appear to be wiped out (when in reality the Daleks blew each other up and Gallifrey is whisked away to stasis).

(Also, side note, but the big flaw in the plan is "and then they all blow each other up in their crossfire" because they'd have to have some pretty ridiculously coincidental aim unless the Doctors all made them point weapons perfectly at each other during that whole maneuver, but I guess it does explain handily why there are still so many Daleks kicking about the universe.)

I'm also leaning towards the museum curator actually really being a future incarnation of the Doctor in secret retirement, but 11 loses this knowledge that he somehow averted his fate at Trenzalore when all the other memories of the events go away.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:37 PM on November 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


It's been retconned for us, but not for the characters. Nine and Ten still have their motives intact, mistakenly believing that's how things happened, only now Eleven knows differently.

I didn't get as attached to Eleven as I did to Ten and especially Nine, and lost interest in Eleven's arc somewhere around putting Hitler in a closet, because I need a little more introspection and a little less whiz-bang jokey-goofing through history. After seeing this, my Feels are mostly nostalgia and missing Nine and wishing Donna Noble would return somehow and damn you Eccleston why did you have to be a twit about this was there another GI Joe film waiting you should have been in this episode and also wondering who Capaldi's doctor will be and then all of that fell out because Four, you have not changed a bit, have you?

... damn it, Eccleston.
posted by cmyk at 6:37 PM on November 23, 2013 [22 favorites]




God. If only Donna Noble had somehow shown up in this, it would have been perfect.

They presented Rose in a way I wasn't expecting, but I really enjoyed how she played her 'role'. A certain maturity that she didn't have as Rose shown through.
posted by Windigo at 6:41 PM on November 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


There's a shot where they let you clearly see the Doctor's phone number (though I can't make it out on the non-HD video file that I have). There must be a coded message or in-joke in there.
posted by painquale at 6:42 PM on November 23, 2013


I don't know...I thought it was fine, but the whole re-boot was (in my opinion) about a Doctor with inner turmoil, and they just wiped all that out in one rather facile episode. The absence of Eccleston was really obvious in some scenes. And lately the new Doctor Who is about SHOUTING IMPORTANT SPEECHES OVER INTRUSIVE MUSIC, which bothers me a bit.

"An Adventure in Space and Time" was rather delightful, though.
posted by xingcat at 6:44 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I just don't like retcons in general, and the 'well, 9 and 10 of course remember it the way we did but no one else will' plot just irritated me.

I like the way it's setting up for 12, retcon or not, and because this kind of thing played to Moffat's biggest strength (clever plotting in a single episode) and avoided his problematic characterisation of women I rather enjoyed it.
posted by jeather at 6:45 PM on November 23, 2013


"Adventure" was delightful and David Bradley was perfect, although I couldn't shake the worry that William Hartnell was going to drive off in a spaceship full of dinosaurs or host a wedding.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:48 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm also leaning towards the museum curator actually really being a future incarnation of the Doctor in secret retirement, but 11 loses this knowledge that he somehow averted his fate at Trenzalore when all the other memories of the events go away.

The final episode of Doctor Who will end with the 78th Doctor regenerating into a CGI William Hartnell.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:49 PM on November 23, 2013 [7 favorites]


The sound of Baker's voice, which I recognized from the very first word spoken, stood my hair on end. Then I got all verklempt in honor of ten year-old me, who had a safe place in the Tardis all those years ago. In a sea of bullies, bad schooling, and general alienation, Who was where I could breathe freely.

I love that the time war has been turned from a mere trope to facilitate a reboot into something that could be written into an expansive and wonderful story arc the likes of which never existed in the golden years. Some things I miss, and some things are better.

It occurred to me, too, that my best best friend, lost just this year, would have loved this.

Strange, the power of cheap television.
posted by sonascope at 6:49 PM on November 23, 2013 [45 favorites]


> "And John Hurt's final line took a couple seconds to sink in - and then I laughed like a loon."

What was that line, by the way? I managed not to catch it ...
posted by kyrademon at 6:50 PM on November 23, 2013


So, here's something exciting: the curator's line about revisiting old faces leaves a perfectly workable plot opening to have the former Doctors show up as future Doctors, thus explaining away their aged appearances.

(Also, just noticed I made a mistake above with the "11 loses this knowledge that he somehow averted his fate at Trenzalore when all the other memories of the events go away." bit because 11 should remember all of this.)
posted by jason_steakums at 6:51 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Curator also basically makes the VHS release of Shada canon.
posted by Mezentian at 6:55 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


kyrademon, he hoped for less conspicuous ears :)
posted by Tobu at 6:55 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


I don't know...I thought it was fine, but the whole re-boot was (in my opinion) about a Doctor with inner turmoil, and they just wiped all that out in one rather facile episode.

I'm with you-- this takes away much of the tumult and emotion. So pat, so clean-- why throw in a wedding? Why wave away all the time line issues? (Then again, I loved Eccleston, so...)
posted by jetlagaddict at 6:56 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Elizabeth in this episode reminded me an awful lot of Miranda Richardson's Queenie from Blackadder. I'd be very surprised if she wasn't modeled on her.
posted by painquale at 6:57 PM on November 23, 2013 [12 favorites]


Elizabeth was the weakest part of the episode, I think.
posted by Windigo at 6:58 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


Putting John Hurt and Jemma Redgrave in something like this... it feels a bit like Bob Hoskins in Who Framed Roger Rabbit -- they just seem more real than everyone else because they're a different kind of actor. It's not that the others aren't fine actors but these two have a different kind of relationship with the camera. But unexpectedly, Billie Piper was a bit like that as well... she knocked it out of the park.
posted by George_Spiggott at 6:58 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh, God, yes, painquale and Windigo. I found that resemblance distracting, really.
posted by maudlin at 6:59 PM on November 23, 2013


This story really needed some more nefarious Morris Dancers.
posted by Mezentian at 6:59 PM on November 23, 2013 [6 favorites]


Why throw in a wedding?

I liked that they finally settled that question. We've known for a long time that Ten was married to Elizabeth. It always seemed like a strange and unlikely part of the Doctor's history. With Tennant available once again, they had the opportunity to explain it.
posted by painquale at 7:00 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I managed to avoid all spoilers, just finished watching now. I thought the whole thing was fantastic. Then Tom Baker showed up. Tom Baker who was my Doctor when I was growing up. Who I met at a book signing on my 8th birthday. I still have the book.

And my daughter (15) loved it as much as me, and yes - she noticed River's shoes.

Couldn't be happier.
posted by valleys at 7:01 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I really enjoyed it! I liked the way they worked in Billie Piper (LOVE her), dug seeing Tennant again (and I was pretty over Ten by the the time his last episode rolled around), adored the cameo at the end. It was great. I am NOT a fan of Steven Moffat's writing for Doctor Who, so I was sort of expecting to merely tolerate it, but it was really fun. It gave me renewed hope for future seasons that will probably be dashed within five episodes, but hey. I'll enjoy it while I can.

I loved how John Hurt's Doctor couldn't get over the youthful exuberance of his future selves. HA.

I'm looking forward to Capaldi because I really like him, but I kind of don't want Matt Smith to leave.
posted by Aquifer at 7:02 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I can't figure out what that weird bone structure is next to River's shoes. I suspect it's linked to a past companion (so far, there are items of River's, Amy's, and Jack's in there), but I don't know who. It's too noticeable to be nothing important.
posted by painquale at 7:03 PM on November 23, 2013


Why'd Baker spoil his cameo?
Way to rip any emotional gravitas out of the scene.
posted by Mezentian at 7:05 PM on November 23, 2013


Tom Baker was my Doctor from my childhood, so to see him appear brought a lump to my throat. Overall, I loved the episode and it did answer some questions about the Time War.
Only sadness was no Christopher Eccleston :(
posted by arcticseal at 7:08 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


My take on Rose as The Moment is that this is really Rose Tyler. It happens in a flash for her while she takes on the heart of the TARDIS and sees the whole of time. That spark of her is what made the weapon sentient, because she knew what the destruction of Gallifrey did/would do (I need Douglas Adams and his future grammar here) to the Doctor, so she found another way... even though she and her Doctors would never know what happened. Which also solves why she saw but did not react to Ten; they hadn't met yet.

This is all because I adore Rose Tyler and nothing can convince me not to.
posted by cmyk at 7:08 PM on November 23, 2013 [37 favorites]


I must say I did briefly actually expect all three Doctors to press the button. So, well done there Moffatt, usually I can see your tricks coming too far in advance to enjoy them. And it's Clara's look, and 11's recognition of it, that sold the switcheroo for me. Suddenly you see that they really have a relationship.

Also, did anyone else notice that the BBC is still fighting the Battle of Britain? Except with sky trenches.
posted by BungaDunga at 7:08 PM on November 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


I loved it!!!! But how did Tom Baker show up old? Didn't he regenerate when he was younger looking?
posted by asra at 7:09 PM on November 23, 2013


It was insinuated that Tom Baker was a future version of the Doctor, who had revisited a favorite face.
posted by Ruki at 7:10 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


In the shorty prequel, John Hurt shows up young too -- you only see him in a reflection. He aged in the Time War. We can assume that 4.2 aged during his second incarnation.
posted by George_Spiggott at 7:11 PM on November 23, 2013


Didn't he regenerate when he was younger looking?

Something something Dark Dimension, I'll guess.
posted by Mezentian at 7:11 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I still really want to see the full effect of The War Doctor, and not just him at his most vulnerable. I'd love for Hurt to pop in again and really show what a Doctor with no limits is like, because there was a loooong time between Karn and Arcadia and it seems like using The Moment would have just been the horrible icing on a decidedly un-Doctorlike cake.

cmyk, that was my take on Rose, too, because of the flashes of the Time Vortex energy in the eyes.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:12 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


(er, by 4.2 I mean Doctor #4 rev 2.0, The Doctor/Curator)
posted by George_Spiggott at 7:13 PM on November 23, 2013


Halfway through watching this special, I decided that it was going to retcon the 9th, 10th, and 11th doctors out of existence so that there could be more doctors.
posted by aniola at 7:17 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


A great bit of fun, although the climax did unfortunately call to mind Iron Man 3's big action scene.
posted by xigxag at 7:17 PM on November 23, 2013


My take on Rose as The Moment is that this is really Rose Tyler.

Mine, too. She did call herself Bad Wolf after all, and can manipulate time apparently arbitrarily, which seems about right. Bad Wolf Rose was only in existence for a, well, moment. So it fits with the name- it's a frozen moment where some portion of time itself became sentient, so it's also arbitrarily powerful.

We never see what actually happens to it afterwards, though, do we?
posted by BungaDunga at 7:18 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


I missed Baker spoiling his appearance, so there was much squeeing when he showed up. Part of me thinks that the painting actually has Gallifrey trapped in it, although I think that Moffat would not do that (if another show runner takes over before the Doctor gets back, well, that will be interesting). Also, given just how monstrous the high council of Gallifrey was, right before they were vanished, I am itching to see how they will act when they finally see the Doctor again. And I wonder who they will have Rassilon regenerate into, as they probably won't be able to get Dalton again for the role (as much as I thought he was the best part (and at times the only good part) of The End of Time).

As much as I enjoyed this, I still saw hints of Moffat's trouble with female characters, although Clara's relation with the Doctor seems to be a bit better now.

Finally, how the hell did they get from stuck inside the heart of his time stream to simply living life normally again? There is a great big plot hole there that I demand to be filled.
posted by Hactar at 7:23 PM on November 23, 2013


I also enjoyed the foreshadowing with the screwdriver calculations scene.
posted by aniola at 7:23 PM on November 23, 2013 [6 favorites]


but the whole re-boot was (in my opinion) about a Doctor with inner turmoil, and they just wiped all that out in one rather facile episode

My take, based on the timey-wimey that #9(10), #10(11), and #11(12) up to this point will have forgotten that they did not actaully use The Moment, so the turmoil is real and now Doctor #11(12) can start to move on with new goals (i.e. tracking down Gallifrey) and less self-destructive doubt.

I think we've had enough turmoil and could use some straight-up curiosity for a bit.

Now if they'd just stop being so damn Tomorrowland moody with the console room, ditch the bad lighting atmospherics and German Expressionist set design, and go back to either the clinical overlit white roundel rooms or the gorgeous secondary control room...
posted by sonascope at 7:24 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


Since the BBC built a perfect recreation of the Hartnell-era Tardis set for An Adventure in Space and Time, I was hoping they would take advantage and somehow work it into the plot for this episode. It would be great to see it out for a spin one more time.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 7:27 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


Since the BBC built a perfect recreation of the Hartnell-era Tardis set for An Adventure in Space and Time, I was hoping they would take advantage and somehow work it into the plot for this episode.

I'm not sure whether they used the same set pieces, but the round things did make an appearance.
posted by painquale at 7:38 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


What do they do, anyway?
posted by Grangousier at 7:40 PM on November 23, 2013 [14 favorites]


No idea.
posted by painquale at 7:41 PM on November 23, 2013 [18 favorites]


I really like the idea that the Bad Wolf only existed in the moment where Rose absorbed the Time Vortex, and everything it ever did, it did instantaneously across all time in that one moment - which is effectively timeless and infinite, because why would a moment matter to the Time Vortex?

And what would a god with the mind of Rose Tyler do with all of time and space to play with and infinite time in which to do it? Help the Doctor. And all these interventions to help him would make the Bad Wolf so woven into the fabric of the universe that every time she intervened, that's what makes those fixed points in time he's always going on about. No matter how much he might like to change a fixed point, it's only there because that moment, before the Bad Wolf fixed it, would have meant doom for the Doctor. Stuff like Amy remembering the Doctor back into existence at her wedding? The Bad Wolf made that possible, by making Amy's string-of-coincidences life go the way it did. Same with the "chance" of Clara's leaf. She's not the Impossible Girl, she's the Intentional Girl. The Bad Wolf had an eternity to save the Doctor in that moment, it would be so easy for her to do these things.

I mean, it completely takes the danger out of the series, him having his own personal protective god ensuring predestined survival and all, but it's a sweet thought.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:45 PM on November 23, 2013 [36 favorites]


I usually hate reset/retcon type plots, but the saving of Gallifrey worked for me, because it doesn't invalidate all of the pain and trauma 9, 10, and 11 felt at making the decision to destroy Gallifrey, because effectively, they still made that same decision. The Doctor had to make the decision and think it worked in order to save Gallifrey at all. It's more of a timeloop or paradox than a retcon, and it doesn't invalidate any of the Doctor's character growth.

Also, after so many pointless, tedious resets when it comes to the Daleks, I'm willing to accept the Time Lords being back. It's a hell of a lot less contrived feeling than the constant bringing back of the bloody Daleks.

I'm going to rewatch, so maybe I just missed it, but I'm confused. Where did Gallifrey actually go? Like, why is it lost? I don't need this to make much sense, I'm just confused about why time-locked/stasis cubed Gallifrey went missing.
posted by yasaman at 7:55 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


My take on Rose as The Moment is that this is really Rose Tyler.

I originally thought that it was going to go that way, but the Moment seemed to have a personality that was different from both Rose and the Bad Wolf entity. We've never seen either Rose or Bad Wolf act so mature but playful, and I think that's reason enough to think it's neither of them. I don't see much reason to doubt the Moment's own explanation.

I enjoyed when John Hurt said, "Bad Wolf girl, I could kiss you," and the Moment said, "pshyeah, like that's gonna happen." All of the digs at romance were well-appreciated.
posted by painquale at 7:55 PM on November 23, 2013


I wonder if they'll flesh out the War Doctor's history with audio adventures? I've never listened to them, but I understand the Eighth Doctor really comes alive in his audio series.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:00 PM on November 23, 2013


I mean, it completely takes the danger out of the series, him having his own personal protective god ensuring predestined survival and all, but it's a sweet thought.

I've always assumed that Rose/Bad Wolf/the Tardis did more than we saw in Parting of the Ways, so I'm totally willing to roll with the Moment actually being Bad Wolf. I actually thought that while the Moment didn't seem much like Rose or Bad Wolf, she did seem a bit like the Tardis. And why take Rose/Bad Wolf's form at all? Even if the Moment wasn't Bad Wolf, I think it was influenced by Bad Wolf, because wasn't that the whole point of the words? To be an indication that the Bad Wolf had a hand in what was going on, words to lead her where she needed to be?

My other bit of fanon has always been that Bad Wolf would show up again to give Jack his final, true death.
posted by yasaman at 8:02 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


"So as through a glass, and darkly
The age long strife I see
Where I fought in many guises,
Many names, but always me.

And I see not in my blindness
What the objects were I wrought,
But as God rules o'er our bickerings
It was through His will I fought.

So forever in the future,
Shall I battle as of yore,
Dying to be born a fighter,
But to die again, once more."

posted by markkraft at 8:04 PM on November 23, 2013 [6 favorites]


I have rarely been so thrilled to so absolutely, blitheringly, cynically wrong about something.

It was amazingly fantastic (Where has this Moffat been the past two or three years?!?!?!) and quite a treat to see what a proper big budget Doctor Who would look like.
I was thrilled enough for the (uncredited) Capaldi cameo and then Tom Motherfucking Baker showed up...

Only thing missing was a Christopher Eccleston regeneration cameo but it wouldn't be an anniversary special without someone deciding not to participate...

Easily a top 10 episode, hopefully sweeping away some of the dull, tired PTSD Doctor storylines but without upsetting too much of the past except...

If Gallifrey was locked away somewhere, and The Doctor doesn't know where... What the Hell was happening in Last of the Time Lords?
posted by davros42 at 8:04 PM on November 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


I assumed it would suck and I am glad to say that it didn't. John Hurt is the best Doctor we've had in over a decade. Also I am thrilled that they undid the stupidest thing RTD ever did and got rid of the Time War and wiping out the Time Lords!
posted by MrBobaFett at 8:09 PM on November 23, 2013


Was anyone else clear on why the War Doctor regenerated? Was it related to the twisted up time streams that made him and Ten forget what they had just done, and if so why didn't it affect Ten? I would have loved for them to leave the regeneration into Nine off screen, so we could have more John Hurt episodes from time to time. I guess we could still see some of what he got up to during the Time War.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:09 PM on November 23, 2013


Since I'm still up…

(Indigestion, not overexcitement. I tend to eat very badly at weekends. Well. Skillfully, but not with the best judgement. Anyway.)

I do think it was a remarkable achievement, as a piece of television-making-engineering as much as anyone else. After all, the brief was to create a film that did something to somehow celebrate fifty years of this really quite ramshackle television programme; keep children entertained; keep adults entertained; keep fans (who are neither adults nor children, but some Frankenstinian hybrid of the two) as entertained as humanly possible; try to make enough space for two larger-than-life leading actors without either overshadowing the other (putting in a third, as well as giving a number of supporting characters, some of them new, space to breathe was an optional challenge, enthusiastically taken up); create a sense of occasion. And do all that while trying to live up to some of the most intense hype that the BBC promotional unit has ever tried to turn on a programme, seemingly across several continents.

The team might not have hit all those marks full on, but they did as good a job as was humanly possible. Any creative act generally comes down to getting as much of the intention out there before the grim jaws of reality come down, and reality is especially tough on filmmakers. That's why they have to distract it with so much money.

I thought Billie Piper was excellent, too, by the way - she did have a terrific presence, and it was nice that she was involved (Rose was as important a part of the revivification as anyone else, so she deserved to be). The Moment's personality was reminiscent of Gaiman's Tardis, I thought, and she played it beautifully. A compassionate weapon. What an notion. My wife wondered whether all Time Lord machinery was alive like that, and I do think it's a nice idea.

And if you can get iPlayer radio (apparently it's possible even overseas), Radio 4 Extra have been broadcasting some of the audio adventures this past week - I listened to McGann in Human Resources today. Lots of fun.
posted by Grangousier at 8:10 PM on November 23, 2013 [12 favorites]


Was anyone else clear on why the War Doctor regenerated?

That particular body was dedicated to fighting the war, and so with no war, there was no need for the body (he was unsurprised, as the body was certainly worn out).
posted by Grangousier at 8:12 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


Was anyone else clear on why the War Doctor regenerated?

Not clear exactly but he did say that his body was "wearing a bit thin" which is exactly what the First Doctor said when he regenerated. And yes, I screamed.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:14 PM on November 23, 2013 [7 favorites]


Especially because the first Doctor also didn't have an on screen reason for regenerating beyond that line.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:16 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Am I the only one who thinks that maybe Osgood was the Curator's daughter (who is a future Doctor, taking a past Doctor's face much as Romana did)? Maybe that 'perfect sister' is Jenny.
posted by Windigo at 8:17 PM on November 23, 2013 [7 favorites]


I disapprove of these single-serving Doctors.
posted by charlie don't surf at 8:17 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


Kind of (ok, really) fanwanky, but I've been wondering if maybe the Karn Juice Regeneration wasn't really a regeneration so much as a manipulation and extension of stuff like that period where things are in flux and a Doctor can do things like regenerate a hand, and Romana's ability to choose her regeneration. Like, he only really lived in the greatly extended moment of 8's death, and he aged faster and wore out more easily because of it.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:18 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I now have a much better appreciation for 12, although I do think 13 is going to piss a lot of people off.


John Hurt was magnificent, though.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:19 PM on November 23, 2013


I truly believed, with all my fanboy heart, that Eccleston was going to make a surprise appearance. It's my only complaint. I mean, really, all he would've had to do is stand there after the regeneration.

Eccleston, I can't help loving you.
posted by MoxieProxy at 8:19 PM on November 23, 2013 [14 favorites]


My only real complaint was that cheeseball writing "NO MORE" on the wall with a gun moment.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:21 PM on November 23, 2013 [10 favorites]


the whole re-boot was (in my opinion) about a Doctor with inner turmoil, and they just wiped all that out in one rather facile episode.

Right, they got rid of a lot of the crap stuff the reboot started. Let's hope they can manage to keep steering the series back to more resemble classic Who.
posted by MrBobaFett at 8:21 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


Who's to say that John Hurt didn't regen into Capaldi, giving us a Doctor in a much earlier timeline.
posted by Lord_Pall at 8:29 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Christmas episode?
posted by Lemurrhea at 8:35 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Lord_Pall: Who's to say that John Hurt didn't regen into Capaldi, giving us a Doctor in a much earlier timeline.

The post-production team, who overlaid bits of Christopher Eccleston's face onto John Hurt's at the end of his regeneration.
posted by tzikeh at 8:37 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


I would like a T-shirt with a silhouette of the nerdy woman with the glasses, scarf, and inhaler, and the word "Sciencey," please.
posted by Celsius1414 at 8:41 PM on November 23, 2013 [18 favorites]


The post-production team, who overlaid bits of Christopher Eccleston's face onto John Hurt's at the end of his regeneration.

Oh.

Glad that's resolved then.
posted by Lord_Pall at 8:44 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]



If Gallifrey was locked away somewhere, and The Doctor doesn't know where... What the Hell was happening in Last of the Time Lords?
posted by davros42 at 8:04 PM on November 23 [+] [!]


Nice try Davros, but i'm telling you nothing.
posted by asra at 8:44 PM on November 23, 2013 [38 favorites]


"NO MORE" on the wall

It was also on the whiteboard.
posted by homunculus at 8:45 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


While I'd be sad to be Smith go (I thought that even if he was given crap storylines I always bought his performance 100% and Tennant never clicked with me, at all) I'm really excited for an older Doctor, esp. if he gets to GO HOME.
posted by The Whelk at 8:47 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


So does this mean The Master might get 'released'?
posted by Windigo at 8:48 PM on November 23, 2013


Nice try Davros, but i'm telling you nothing.
posted by asra at 8:44 PM on November 23 [+] [!]


Curses, foiled again.
posted by davros42 at 8:48 PM on November 23, 2013 [7 favorites]


While we're still fortunate enough to have so many past Doctor actors among us, I'd really be cool with one special a year with them on the show. Use the "revisiting old faces" thing, or just completely ignore the fact that they're older, or say they came from alternate timelines, or whatever to make it fit story-wise, but they really should make use of the opportunity for more than just big anniversary events. Hell, do a whole season that's one big interlocking multi-Doctor story. It seems like everyone but Eccleston would jump at the chance, and why not let them if they're willing? You can do pretty much anything you want and have it work in the world of the show.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:50 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


fanwanking: I wonder if this episode was trying to make a point between the War Doctor, The Man Who Regrets and the Man Who Forgets, that in order to sometimes find the right solution or the best method, you *have* to in some way forget the past? That memory can be a burden or barrier?
posted by The Whelk at 9:12 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Part of me thinks that the painting actually has Gallifrey trapped in it, although I think that Moffat would not do that (if another show runner takes over before the Doctor gets back, well, that will be interesting).

The paintings and the Black Archives are totally new. Certainly the paintings are key. Gallifrey Falls No More is at minimum, a portal to Gallifrey the moment before it was hidden. The Zygons were able to "translate" into it and the Doctor has the translation device.

BTW, did anyone notice the painting of The Raft of The Medusa with Cybermen on it? Also, did anyone notice Clara now has the Vortex Manipulator and the access code?

Also, given just how monstrous the high council of Gallifrey was, right before they were vanished, I am itching to see how they will act when they finally see the Doctor again.

Trial of a Time Lord II. Personally, I think they ought to put Rose Bad Wolf and Clara Impossible Girl on trial. They already tried and convicted River Song.
posted by charlie don't surf at 9:14 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


fanwanking: I wonder if this episode was trying to make a point between the War Doctor, The Man Who Regrets and the Man Who Forgets, that in order to sometimes find the right solution or the best method, you *have* to in some way forget the past? That memory can be a burden or barrier?

If Eccleston was in it, he'd have to be The Man Who Runs. "Coward. Any day."
posted by jason_steakums at 9:17 PM on November 23, 2013 [5 favorites]


damnit ancient storehouses of magical art is MY deal grumble mumble oh well the Undercollection has never had to deal with grants or proper climate storage grumble
posted by The Whelk at 9:19 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


My take on Rose as The Moment is that this is really Rose Tyler.

I watching in a bar that was showing closed captioning. Her character's name was displayed as "Rose's Likeness".
posted by the jam at 9:20 PM on November 23, 2013


I was watching with my kids, who have just started watching Doctor Who. When Tom Baker spoke I shouted "That's my Doctor!" which surprised me, because prior to that moment I've thought of Nine as my Doctor. My subconscious knew better.
posted by The corpse in the library at 9:21 PM on November 23, 2013 [9 favorites]


Also, much more than 10, it makes me so happy that 9 was able to know the truth of the Time War even for a little bit.

Oh and I wish so much that they got David Bradley to film a scene where they go back and get the first Doctor to start the calculation. They had to make a stop there at some point for the whole plan to work.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:22 PM on November 23, 2013


I watching in a bar that was showing closed captioning. Her character's name was displayed as "Rose's Likeness".

Billie Piper was specifically listed as Rose in the credits though. Not that either of these things suggests who the Moment really was or wasn't, but I was looking for any extratextual clues too, and the credits listing her as Rose didn't make things much clearer.
posted by yasaman at 9:24 PM on November 23, 2013


I love this thread, the unabashed gushing, the sheer enjoyment, very few sour notes (least of all from me). We need to put this thread in statis.
posted by JHarris at 9:25 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


Got to repeat my "CALLED IT" for the War Doctor's regeneration into #9 without the voluntary cooperation of Chris Eccleston and my declaration that the only thing that could've made the "Curator" cameo cooler would've been a cameo-cameo by John Cleese and Eleanor Bron.

So much good stuff, and only a few qualms (was the 'averting the genocide' development a cosmic version of "Let's not but say we did?"). And now that the Sonic Screwdriver software gimmick is out of the bag, how hard will it be for the show to NOT make it a Go-To Deus Ex Machina in future episodes?

This definitely sets a very specific theme for the future of Doctor Who (unless the Christmas Special/regeneration episode twists it in a whole other direction)... and we'll likely see Capaldi's somewhat-older Doctor as a wanderer searching for a way home (do I get a hint of Quantum Leap or Sliders sneaking in here? I hope not). And if I can toss out a bit more speculation, now that all of Gallifrey is 'frozen but maybe retrievable', could we end up with Impossible Clara's origin being semi-retconned into a "child of Gallifrey"?
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:30 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


God the more I think about what might have been with Eccleston coming back, and seeing him act the shit out of A) seeing the War Doctor, which would be like the rage from Dalek, and B) realizing he gets a chance to undo what he's done... Doctors 8.5, 10 and 11 tell him at his most depressed and angry and traumatized and that they've found a way to fix everything, and then that face lights up with a "Fantastic!" He'd probably slip in something like "What are we waiting for? RUN!", too, and then I'd immediately die from all the feels.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:31 PM on November 23, 2013 [17 favorites]


I. Love. You. All.
posted by Saxon Kane at 9:34 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


We need to put this thread in statis.

so we can attack future threads.
posted by The Whelk at 9:35 PM on November 23, 2013 [26 favorites]


If they start using some of the other living former Doctors in specials... and they do a Trial of a Time Lord II ... Come on, Colin Baker as the new Valeyard/Prosecutor; some alternate version of #6 that remained in the Time Lord memory banks, but has a spark of sentience or something. He has aged and wants to take over the new Doctor, upset that he was cut down when he was just starting and never had the chance to really live as the Doctor.
posted by Saxon Kane at 9:40 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Probably didn't mean anything, but Rose/Bad Wolf was wearing a wedding ring.
posted by Windigo at 9:44 PM on November 23, 2013 [8 favorites]


just because something doesn't mean anything doesn't mean we can't talk about it for a million billion comments /fandom
posted by The Whelk at 9:54 PM on November 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


OK THEN WHAT DID IT MEANNNNN? ALL THE FEELS.
posted by Windigo at 9:56 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you read the Coal Hill School sign at the beginning of the special, you'll see that we are now in a situation where the current Doctor Who companion has Ian Chesterton as her boss. I sure hope this means we'll be getting a William Russell appearance this season.
posted by scrowdid at 10:10 PM on November 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


I remember being very down on Tennant's run on the Doctor, but damned if this episode didn't make me realize how much I liked him when he wasn't standing in the rain saying "I'm sorry. I'm so so sorry."

And the moment Tom Baker's voice came from off-screen, I swore really loud as he was the Doctor that I grew up with when watching Friday nights on Iowa Public Television. His voice is burned into my brain.

Loved the interaction between the three Doctors, loved the bits like "Sandshoes and Grandad" or "Timey-wimey, I don't know where he picks that up."

Just the three seconds of Capaldi scowling gave me great hope for the future.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 10:12 PM on November 23, 2013 [12 favorites]


my tumblr dash is like 90% Peter Capaldi eyes right now.
posted by The Whelk at 10:23 PM on November 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


He really, really needed to have a bag of Jelly Babies with him. And he really shouldn't have spoiled it in an interview, but it was still awesome.
posted by beowulf573 at 10:37 PM on November 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh, like you'd expect Four not to screw with things mischeviously.
posted by JHarris at 10:49 PM on November 23, 2013 [11 favorites]


I just like that the solution to invading shape-shifting monsters from the past is to SIT DOWN AND HAVE DETAILED PEACE TALKS ABOUT HOW TO BEST SERVE BOTH NATIONS.

It's so very Who.
posted by The Whelk at 10:59 PM on November 23, 2013 [15 favorites]


Under the Veil of Ignorance. I love that.
posted by homunculus at 11:18 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


I just like that the solution to invading shape-shifting monsters from the past is to SIT DOWN AND HAVE DETAILED PEACE TALKS ABOUT HOW TO BEST SERVE BOTH NATIONS.

THANKS OBAMA
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:23 PM on November 23, 2013 [18 favorites]


First of all, I'm glad that I wasn't the only one who cried at the end of this thing. And put me in the Wow, Billie Piper was great in this camp, as well as freaking out at the Baker cameo.

All this talk about Clara being part Galifreyean and teaching at Ian's school, plus the way she lingered over the photo of Susan in The Black Archive has me thinking: Clara is Susan somehow.
posted by KingEdRa at 11:26 PM on November 23, 2013 [2 favorites]


i like how the big red button was shaped like a rose.

my tumblr dash is like 90% Peter Capaldi eyes right now.

It's astonishing how many results there are on google already for "no sir all 13". (Try it spelled out as "thirteen" as well.)
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:35 PM on November 23, 2013 [3 favorites]


The line that made my British SO laugh.

"no one can no know we have this, not even our allies."

"why?"

"can you imagine? Americans with access to time travel, you've seen their movies."
posted by The Whelk at 11:39 PM on November 23, 2013 [23 favorites]


I'm glad that via the screwdriver software and later events the Doctor finally started using a clever application of time travel developed by Bill Preston, Esq. and Theodore Logan.
posted by mobunited at 11:52 PM on November 23, 2013 [21 favorites]


I'm not exactly sure what was retconned. Sandshoes had it out with Time Lords stuck in a chunk of time before. They stuck Gallifrey in another chunk of time where they're frozen instead of really angry. Essentially, this time they were saved from Timothy Dalton's saliva.

The idea that the Daleks would all shoot each other is remarkably dumb. I liked the show, but that was some lazy-ass writing.
posted by mobunited at 12:05 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


The idea that the Daleks would all shoot each other is remarkably dumb.

If the foe were anyone else I might agree with you. But it seemed like a really fitting end for the Daleks.
posted by Gary at 12:23 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


I wonder if they'll flesh out the War Doctor's history with audio adventures? I've never listened to them, but I understand the Eighth Doctor really comes alive in his audio series.

Big Finish don't have the rights, and Hurt doesn't seem to have ant great affection for the role, so I'd suggest: not unless they recast him and the BBC gets into producing an audio range.

If Gallifrey was never sealed behind the Medusa Cascade (with the Doctor's name): what was all that about?
And are we to believe the Daleks threw everything, in one (very conventional) ship to surface assault? And didn't have any kind of friendly fire strategy? And, if they didn't burn.... how did Dalek Caan and Dalek Dalek escape the time lock/fall to earth?
And where were the weapons like the Nightmere Child, the Tick-Tock King, and the Skaro Devistations?

And what's the deal with Rassilon and the high council?

Never have the time war seemed to small and limited.

(And, on another note, all of this stuff about Gallifrey being hidden -- well, Lawrence Miles' idea for a reboot was to store the Earth in a book. Close enough that he's probably hurling invective at the TV now.

The paintings and the Black Archives are totally new. Certainly the paintings are key. Gallifrey Falls No More is at minimum, a portal to Gallifrey the moment before it was hidden. The Zygons were able to "translate" into it and the Doctor has the translation device.

No, the Black Archive dates to at least Sarah Jane Adventures. The paintings: where did it come from? How did the Zygons know to use it?
They were not a race with Time Travel.

I'm about to watch The Fish Doctors, and then hopefully rewatch this. But I am still in a minority that doesn't get the love for this. And it's not a case of high expectations. It hit all of the notes I thought it would, and the performances are excellent, but I felt Moffat's writing fell flat.

But, you know, I am and always have been a fan, so I have known joy, and I have known disappointment before, and the cycle will continue, and I will keep watching.
posted by Mezentian at 12:26 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


The idea that the Daleks would all shoot each other is remarkably dumb.

The battle you saw was only how it expressed itself in the four dimensions we're capable of perceiving. In fact it was playing out throughout the universe using modalities of aggression beyond our comprehension. The solution shown was a metaphoric reduction of a hypercomplicated gambit which was merely analogous to the one depicted.
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:28 AM on November 24, 2013 [16 favorites]


I think they just blowed up.
posted by JHarris at 12:38 AM on November 24, 2013 [9 favorites]


There was that rumor floating around about Baker's appearance having something to do with being found, in character as the Doctor but old, in a Zygon pod, which really made me think we were getting crazy colliding alternate timelines Time War chaos. I'm kind of sad that we didn't get the really interesting parts of the Time War where the universe was breaking down all around Gallifrey, but then again I don't think one single special could do that kind of thing justice. You'd really need to spend so much screen time on it to make it live up to what's been hinted at, which always seemed to me like a nightmare version of the weird mashed-up Churchill-and-pterodactyls timeline from "The Wedding of River Song" crossed with, like, the inside of Grant Morrison's head. All those names that were hinted at, the Nightmare Child, the Skaro Degradations, the Army of Meanwhiles and Neverweres led by the Could've Been King, the Horde of Travesties, they just scream 1990's Doom Patrol/Invisibles-era Grant Morrison to me so much that I don't think the TV series could ever really live up to the versions they put in my head by mentioning them.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:53 AM on November 24, 2013 [7 favorites]


Though I don't really find fault with the final showdown of the Time War being just Daleks vs. Time Lords, because the Daleks wouldn't lower themselves to allying with all those hinted-at creatures and nightmares for their final extermination of the Doctor and the Time Lords. So the typical Dalek assault fits pretty well for that one final day of the war.
posted by jason_steakums at 1:01 AM on November 24, 2013


The idea that the Daleks would all shoot each other is remarkably dumb

It was unnecessary, wasn't it, because John Hurt was still going to trigger Billie Piper, which would have killed them all anyway, just without Gallifrey being there... or am I confused?
posted by Segundus at 1:26 AM on November 24, 2013


Moffat has been saying that he wanted the 50th Anniversary special to basically set up the next fifty years. I don't think Capaldi is going to find Gallifrey next season. I think that's just a tease - the unanswered question.

Until the next showrunner comes along and decides to find Gallifrey for his first season finale. But I hope it remains missing. The new series has done well without it.
posted by crossoverman at 1:38 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm a Doctor Who baby, born on the 20th anniversary. I loved this episode SO MUCH. Tom Baker is still my doctor, even though I only have sketchy memories of his episodes. Clara wasn't too flirty (I hate that) and I loved all the doctors fighting together. All the little throwbacks that I got were so cool, like it beginning in black and white then fading into colour and the governor of Clara's school etc. not perfect, but GOOD.
posted by jonathanstrange at 1:43 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm a Doctor Who baby, born on the 20th anniversary.

All my bones just creaked.
All of them.
posted by Mezentian at 1:56 AM on November 24, 2013 [10 favorites]


"Doctor Who was the second most-watched show of the day, with Strictly Come Dancing just edging into first place with 10.6 million viewers. ITV's other big hitter, I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!, came in at number 4 with 9.2 million watching."

I read somewhere that the global audience was expected to be 75 million.

Amazing.
That's like two Dallases.
posted by Mezentian at 1:58 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


For NuWho standards this was a great celebration, but it was still much more of an eight year anniversary than a fifty year anniversary, Tom Baker cameo not withstanding. It's a pity more wasn't done with the pre-reboot doctors, that, for all his quality, we had John Hurt as the war doctor and not Paul McGann or Christopher Eccleston, but in the nuWho context it worked.

The BBC was always going to put the focus on their existing property rather than to play to the nostalgia of aging old Who fans, so I can't be too disappointed with this.

The Time War was bound to be a disappointment no matter how it would eventually be shown and this was far too conventional for my liking, a big Dalek onslaught with no interesting timey wimey stuff.

But the good thing is that for once in the rebooted series, the Doctor was the Doctor, solving problems through talking and facing insurmountable problems that could only be resolved through mass murder, then finding a way around them anyway. That all of this depended on just introduced dei ex machina, well, that's classic Who too.
posted by MartinWisse at 2:18 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Darn it, I want to post my theory about a thing in the show here, but I've already posted it in the other two threads. And three at the same time seems a bit much.
posted by kyrademon at 2:21 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


You mean:
In the scene by the elevator, when the person is being attacked by the thing, and she is repeating to herself that someone will come and save her? She is not referring to the obvious person. She is referring to the museum curator ... which we know because he's the one who gave her that scarf.

I think that is a perfectly crommulent theory. It needs explaining,. Unless it was fourth-wall shattering. But I doubt that.
posted by Mezentian at 2:30 AM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


Just saw this, and I really liked it! Not sure why, but I drifted away from Doctor Who just before the David Tennant era ended and never saw Matt Smith in the role until now. He seems quite talented, and his companion played by Jenna-Louise Coleman is adorable. She stole every scene she was in. And of course, the cameo near the end made everything 10X cooler!
posted by Kevin Street at 2:48 AM on November 24, 2013


Nice to see the UNIT dating controversy in there.
posted by hawthorne at 3:01 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


and never saw Matt Smith in the role until now.
Having not seen Power Of The Daleks, but every intro to a new Doctor since Castrovalva: The Eleventh Hour is the single best intro to a Doctor so far.
posted by Mezentian at 3:23 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Watching it now.

"I'm the old War Doctor. I've seen horrors that would drive others mad. I'm a grim, sad warrior and I have a terrible mission to end th-- what's this, a fez?"

But I hope it remains missing. The new series has done well without it.

It's an interesting thing. When we went through Classic Who recently (we stalled out about a third of the way through the 4th Doctor, for reasons unrelated to enjoyment), I noticed that the Doctor's people worked best before they became explicitly seen.

Gallifrey becomes a less interesting place the more time we spend there. It starts as this mythic place to which The Doctor vows someday to return, and it ends up the home of a bunch of doddering old people, admittedly with weird and cool tech and abilities. The more mysterious it's kept, I think, the more interesting it seems, and keeping it mostly hidden in New Who, I claim, is for the better.
posted by JHarris at 3:36 AM on November 24, 2013


I also enjoyed the foreshadowing with the screwdriver calculations scene.

The screwdriver scene dealing with the door in the Tower had been foreshadowed for ages. Smith's Doctor mentioned so many times that the screwdriver really needs a fix to handle wood. I couldn't quote the episodes, but here's a quickie from Wikipedia:
In "Silence in the Library", while trying to open a wooden door, the Doctor tells Donna that the sonic screwdriver won't work because the door is made of wood, a fact later restated in "The Hungry Earth"; when Rory complains about this, the Doctor counters to not "diss the sonic." In "The Parting of the Ways", the Doctor mentions that when Emergency Program One was activated, the sonic screwdriver would receive a signal from the TARDIS. In "Forest of the Dead", he claims that a few hair-dryers can interfere with the device, though he states that he is "working on that".
There's also Night Terrors where the same wooden limitation came to the fore.

I'd be disappointed if the sonic screwdriver can't deal with wood going forward.

There's a lot of continuity in play in the Day of the Doctor and I think they worked hard over a long period of time to bring it all together.

Overall, I enjoyed the show. I'm a Tom Baker girl thus I've never expected the cannon or production values to be perfect. But I've always looked forward to the stories. This one met that mark in spades.
posted by michswiss at 3:36 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


And where were the weapons like the Nightmere Child, the Tick-Tock King, and the Skaro Devistations?

And what's the deal with Rassilon and the high council?


One of my favourite things about this episode is that it makes the terrible End of Time even less sensical, because I hate that episode on so many levels....

Loved it. LOVE that the Doctors choose a third option, because that is what the Doctor does. You know, there is a time and place for a hero being forced to choose between two bad options, but there is also a place for a hero picking the hidden third option. And that time is definitely in the anniversary special. I just squeed so much when I realised that they were actually going to rewrite history, because why the hell not?
posted by Cannon Fodder at 3:44 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


So how / when does Matt Smith croak it and regenerate?
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:52 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


So how / when does Matt Smith croak it and regenerate?

The Christmas special as far as I know.
posted by Harpocrates at 3:55 AM on November 24, 2013


Huh. McCoy seemed seriously pissed about not being in the special in an earlier interview.

In retrospect, that now seems like him pulling the greatest Joaquin Phoenix EVER.
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:58 AM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


Yeah, she looks mighty closely at Susan there....
posted by JHarris at 4:04 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Somewhere in the afterlife, C.S. Lewis, Aldous Huxley and John Fitzgerald Kennedy are sitting in a bar. The television is on. President Kennedy is displeased. Huxley is gazing into his martini and Lewis is nursing a pint of beer. Both seem embarrassed.

JFK: What? What is this? What?

AH: Sit down, John, you're making a scene.

JFK: How can they have forgotten? I was the bright hope of the future! Why isn't it all about me? What is this?

CSL (with forced brightness): I quite like it!

AH (sotto voce): Clive...

CSL: Yes. It's very jolly. They travel around the universe in cupboards. That's the sort of thing I like.

JFK (parody English accent): Oh, yes. Jolly good! Jolly good! I like it everso! Are there any scones (to rhyme with thrones) Mummy?

(suddenly vicious, he rounds on Lewis brandishing his thumb and forefinger pressed together)

JFK: I came this close, this close, to blowing up the entire world.

AH: Now, now John. That's not really something to shout about, is it? Not something you'd put on your resumé, eh?

(JFK glares at Lewis, who has pulled a pipe out of his jacket pocket and is absentmindedly cleaning it out.)

JFK: You need to be very careful what you say to me.

(Lewis says nothing but raises his eyebrows. He fishes a pouch of tobacco out of his jacket and begins stuffing the pipe.)

JFK: Yes. I'm a big man. I have connections. I know Frank Sinatra. I told Kruschev that. "You should be very careful what you say to me, I have my finger on the big... red... button.

AH: And what did he say?

JFK: I don't know. It was in Russian.

(Lewis lights his pipe.)

JFK: I can't believe they've forgotten.

(They gaze up at the television.)

JFK: Daaaaleks.

(A pause.)

AH: What say we all go back to my place and drop some acid?
posted by Grangousier at 4:14 AM on November 24, 2013 [24 favorites]


"The Time War was bound to be a disappointment no matter how it would eventually be shown and this was far too conventional for my liking, a big Dalek onslaught with no interesting timey wimey stuff."

Didn't they imply that Gallifrey already used up all their special weapons? I think the war had ground them down to a lower level of technology and they were trying to resist the Daleks with whatever was left. (Kind of like the Home Guard fighting off Nazis with rusty Lee-Enfield rifles and a few surplus helmets.) Maybe the Daleks had run out of fancy stuff too.

And The Moment still exists, but it's stuck in that pocket dimension with Gallifrey.
posted by Kevin Street at 4:16 AM on November 24, 2013


Hey, what is that building the War Doctor's in? The one where he sets down The Moment?

Tom Baker's voice is so sharp and clear. He may look old, but he sounds exactly like he always did. Rock on!
posted by JHarris at 4:34 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hey, what is that building the War Doctor's in? The one where he sets down The Moment?

Literally? If it's not a soundstage, I'd bet money on it being one of the buildings at St Fagans. (I know they film at National Museum sites a fair amount, though I'm not sure they've been to that one yet...)
posted by kalimac at 4:59 AM on November 24, 2013


I mean, in context of the story. I guess it's just a random place away from the fighting.
posted by JHarris at 5:07 AM on November 24, 2013


ahhh, sorry, that makes sense :) Yeah, my impression is that it's a barn or something, well away from Arcadia.
posted by kalimac at 5:18 AM on November 24, 2013


I really like the idea of a weapon of mass destruction which will talk you into not using it.
posted by dumbland at 5:20 AM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


I really like the idea of a weapon of mass destruction which will talk you into not using it.

We've come a long way, with a few fits and starts in the process.
posted by sonascope at 5:33 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I just rewatched.
In 12 hours I have never re-examined a piece of art so hard.
I don't love it, but I don't hate it.
My brains have been spun on platters like they held keys, and were subject to a cruel DJ who was not Alexi Sayle.
posted by Mezentian at 5:47 AM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


Lord_Pall: "Who's to say that John Hurt didn't regen into Capaldi, giving us a Doctor in a much earlier timeline."
We gave a lot of serious discussion to this at my house, the theory being that Hurt regens into Capaldi and Smith is the one that ends up "buried" in Trenzalore. But then again, we didn't notice an Eccleston face superimposed on Hurt, so it was a fun theory while it lasted.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:09 AM on November 24, 2013


Bringing back Gallifrey and changing a lot of what's inside the current doctor's head seems risky, and there's a lot of timey whimey stuff that feels complicated. Somehow, the script managed to smooth all of that out for me and make everything feel so assured. As crazy as this story was, it felt completely calm cool and collected.

So the zygon plot in this episode doesn't feel resolved to me with one of the zygons knowing they're a zygon. Can we have more zygons?
posted by lownote at 6:14 AM on November 24, 2013


Ha man anybody noticed how this whole thing became Homeric in structure? I guess, without the Penelope.
posted by angrycat at 6:25 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Also, wouldn't this sort of rewrite the doctor's motivations? Doesn't he now have license to be a complete prick as he seeks his new goal?
posted by angrycat at 6:28 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I watched last night and enjoyed it so very much. As a non-Brit, I came to Doctor Who late. My very first episode was "New New Earth" and so watching Ten stepping out of the TARDIS made my heart leap. You never really forget your first Doctor.

As for Eccleston, I get the feeling he's burnt a lot of bridges. A few years ago Sylvester McCoy was appearing in a theatre production here in Glasgow and was holding court in the adjacent pub (where my knitting group was meeting). He had a lot of not-very-nice things to say about Chris E. and how he had behaved on set and, by golly, McCoy was saying them very loudly.

In some respects The War Doctor felt like an ersatz Nine - Nine should have been there and had direct involvement with The Moment - but Chris Eccleston wasn't available (didn't want to be available). I thought John Hurt was an excellent choice and between Doctor Who, V for Vendetta, Alien and Hellboy, he's set himself for a cushy retirement with a whole lot of fandom conventions.
posted by kariebookish at 6:32 AM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh I loved it all so, so much, but especially because Matt Smith really owned it. I was massively put off the series by David Tennant's scenery-chewing in general so was a bit worried that he'd be upstaging everyone in this. His characterisation was still self-consciously ACTING AT BEING THE DOCTOR but Matt Smith's effortless embodiment of the role really carried the plot for me. Looking forward to Capaldi but will definitely miss Smith.

I was chuffed to see that Paul McGann took up his rightful place too (full disclosure: I loved him in the film). Also I really hope the 'Sciencey' character shows up in the next season, she was ace.

Only minor quibble was Liz 1. I do heart Joanna Page but the character was written, cast and costumed really weirdly.
posted by freya_lamb at 6:36 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


I like the idea that the Doctor's youthyness was a result of his trying to escape the terrible things that he's done, and now that he's unburdened himself, he can be free to be Peter Capaldi.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 6:38 AM on November 24, 2013 [20 favorites]


Also, did anyone notice Clara now has the Vortex Manipulator and the access code?

While that would be cool, I'm pretty sure I recall someone saying that it had only enough power for one jump. Clara wasn't wearing it anymore when she showed up in the Tower.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:38 AM on November 24, 2013


I think the Zygons, being able to copy people, are more suited to slower creepier The Thing/who's the bad guy type of stories not the quicker paced bombast of Nu Who. That said and bar a few plot things rapidly skid over it was pretty damn good and I enjoyed it... not up to An Adventure In Time And Space but then again not much is.

Be intresting to see the Time Lords back in a greater role, may be have them as analogues of the nasty neo-conservative ruling project we have at the moment to counterpoint the fusty bureaucracy of 70s... though given the capitulation of the BBC to the Enemy that's probably not very likely
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:48 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I quite like that the return of the Zygons has slightly buggered any attempt Marvel might make to put Skrulls in anything.

Did I really just write that sentence?
posted by Grangousier at 6:53 AM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Like many, I went into this special with trepidation, and came out loving it. The episode wasn't free of Moffat's particular foibles: Joanna Page's Elizabeth made my eyes roll out of my head -- and come on, not even a minute or two's conversation at the beginning to establish how the Doctor and Clara got out of the timestream, and how Clara's mentally readjusting after living all those shadow-lives?

But it was also in the vein of his best single-episode work, where all the timey-wimey wibbly-wobby entanglements of the plot turn out to nest into each other like a matryoshka doll, plot and characterization and thematic elements all fitting together. Great hook for upcoming series, although I can't quite decide how long I can stand Moffat and future showrunners drawing out the search for Gallifrey before I get really desperate for some of the Gallifrey-resident characters (who include three of my four favorite Classic Who companions so far) to come back. That's where we last saw Leela, after all, and now that Night of the Doctor has firmly put Charley Pollard in New Who's timeline, that means it's very likely that President Romana was, as well (along with her K-9, favorite number 3).
posted by bettafish at 6:54 AM on November 24, 2013


Regarding the hut where he intends to set off the Moment: it can't be on Gallifrey, can it? Because then the Galaxy Eater would have to eat itself.
posted by ocherdraco at 6:55 AM on November 24, 2013


Grangousier: "I quite like that the return of the Zygons has slightly buggered any attempt Marvel might make to put Skrulls in anything.

Did I really just write that sentence?
"

How so? Shapeshifting aliens invading the Earth is such an old trope of sci-fi that even people who aren't sci-fi fans know it's an old trope.
posted by bettafish at 6:55 AM on November 24, 2013


and come on, not even a minute or two's conversation at the beginning to establish how the Doctor and Clara got out of the timestream, and how Clara's mentally readjusting after living all those shadow-lives?

It's best to forget shitty episodes and continuity, not draw attention to it again.
posted by MartinWisse at 6:58 AM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


I thought it was an above-average episode, but a below average celebration of 50 years of the show. It centered largely on the few years of the new series, with only a cameo by the vast history behind it. That said, I don't know what I would have done, given the situation where many of the actors are dead, most are much much older, and the majority of the audience only came on board recently.

I will say that threats to the entire universe have been somewhat diminished by the idiotic "rebooting" of that same Universe at the end of S5.

I'll also grant that I'm well past the point of no return of Moffat and heavily biased.
posted by Legomancer at 6:59 AM on November 24, 2013


Because then the Galaxy Eater would have to eat itself.

Yes, that would be the Ultimate Nullifier.
posted by MartinWisse at 6:59 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


"[...] a below average celebration of 50 years of the show."

If you didn't like it as much as you hoped so to do, fine. If you have some metric by which you judge this celebration of 50 years of the show (or any show) to be "below average" in any sense, do tell.

As for the risible nature of "threats to the entire universe", that was totally dealt with in Logopolis.
posted by hawthorne at 7:20 AM on November 24, 2013


The interesting thing, to me, of the retcon vs non-retcon, continuity, and reset button discussions is that they always seem to leave out that the discovery of time travel is tantamount to an industrial accident on a cosmic scale. In a universe in which time travel is a relatively simple concept, accessible to beings spread throughout that space, the universe will be/will has been/always will be was instantaneously/preemptively riddled with revisions, retcons, reverse engineering and conflicts of such that have already will have happened from the instant that that universe came into being. If your in-universe cosmology involves a universe splitting through a multiverse in response to changes in the timestream, a cloud of nearly infinite parallels will billow out from the source universe like a mushroom cloud, or rather, it already has going to happened at the outset.

Picture postcards of the Cathedral of Chalesm will be valuable (and blank).

The notion of the Timelords as a sort of stuffy bureaucratic academy, as they've been portrayed off and on over the years, is less accurate than to see them as the source of that universal industrial accident, the clean-up crew, and a sort of monastery for the dark ages, working to preserve the great work of sentience as penance and a philosophical responsibility. There can only be one consistent authority in this regard, as well, else the dissidents slip back to make microscopic tweaks in probability that propagate simultaneously through all time, and so the Timelords become tasked with policing all of space and time to ensure that monopoly, and a universe depends on the ethics and intentions of its police force.

The fact that the Daleks do not control every aspect in every time of the primary universe in DW means that the Timelords have succeeded in whatever timeframe the overall fate of things hinged, the war has been successfully prosecuted, by whatever means, and that time travel technology has been kept from other forces. DW is prone to sloppy writing in such regards, but the bones are strong. I'd love to see an exploration of some of these themes, which can be laden with wonder even as the ultimate outcome is known (stories about WWII, for instance, can be exciting, even though we know how it ends), with some restraint with the somewhat overused "entire universe in peril" idea. The universe has already ended, at least as a self-regulating space in which time flows consistently and without intervention—let's see what happens next.
posted by sonascope at 7:30 AM on November 24, 2013 [17 favorites]


Am I missing something? Didn't we know from "The End of Time" how the Time War ends? That is, the Doctor kills off the Daleks and puts Gallifrey and the Time Lords into a time lock? That was my assumption going into the movie yesterday, making the climax very anti-climactic.
posted by plastic_animals at 7:37 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I prefer to believe that the curator at the end is literally Tom Baker, UK actor who's involvement with scifi TV crossed streams with UNIT a few times and now works in comfortable curatorial semi retirement.
posted by The Whelk at 7:39 AM on November 24, 2013 [9 favorites]


Doesn't he now have license to be a complete prick as he seeks his new goal?

It's like you've never seen William Hartnell in action.
posted by davros42 at 7:41 AM on November 24, 2013 [10 favorites]


If you didn't like it as much as you hoped so to do, fine. If you have some metric by which you judge this celebration of 50 years of the show (or any show) to be "below average" in any sense, do tell.

As for the risible nature of "threats to the entire universe", that was totally dealt with in Logopolis.


My metric for a celebration of 50 years of the show would be something that includes more than the past 8 years of the show as more than just a cameo. I would have liked something more than a reminder that the original series existed. As I said, I recognize that, given the situation, this would be very difficult. On the other hand, I am grateful that the 50th anniversary celebrated even the last 8 years and didn't only give cheers for everything since Season 5 started.

As for credible threats to the universe, Logopolis happened before we casually rebooted the entire universe with sciencey-wiency bullshit at the end of Season 5 of the new show.
posted by Legomancer at 8:33 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


So, it turns out that in The Daemons there was a character called Sgt. Osgood, a member of UNIT who later became its scientific advisor in the novels... and like the Osgood we saw last night, he wore big, chunky-framed glasses. Hmm.
posted by bettafish at 8:36 AM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


A bit of a nitpick but I did kinda expect the Time War to be more, well for want of a better word, timey-wimey rather than the Siege of Stalingrad.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 8:38 AM on November 24, 2013 [9 favorites]


My initial reaction to the episode, "Boy, this would probably only be an hour and fifteen minutes long without all the commercial breaks!"

I never really liked Billie Piper and was perpetually distracted by her appearance in the episode. I would have taken any other companion than she. I found the Elizabeth performance distracting, a tad too whimsical, as well. It was worth watching to see Tenant back in the converses again, and that was the main basis of my enjoyment. I definitely would have loved to see what a War Doctor was capable of, rather than just throwing in the towel and blowing it all to heck (prior to what ended up happening).

The end solution, "The Daleks will shoot each other!" reminded me of the solution to Blink's end, but on a far grander scale.

It was a good and entertaining Dr. Who episode (of the new variety), but I was hoping for more callbacks to the 50 years of the show, rather than the last 5 years, so to speak.
posted by Atreides at 8:44 AM on November 24, 2013


> Am I missing something? Didn't we know from "The End of Time" how the Time War ends? That is, the Doctor kills off the Daleks and puts Gallifrey and the Time Lords into a time lock? That was my assumption going into the movie yesterday, making the climax very anti-climactic.

I found it explained in the Reddit thread. The war doctor was going to blow up everyone and timelock the explosion (to contain it I suppose). End of Time has the high council going full-on evil, planning to end reality so they can sublimate to a higher plane; here we have lesser time lords explaining that the high councils have cut themselves off.

Both stories are taking place concurrently on Gallifrey, and immediately before the time lock; the council's last-ditch plan fails during the episode. What this episode establishes is that Gallifreyans are still alive inside the time lock. I imagine they are slowed down as in Hide and not in complete stasis, because Stolen Earth establishes that Dalek Caan managed to break in and out at the price of his sanity.
posted by Tobu at 8:51 AM on November 24, 2013 [10 favorites]


> "So, it turns out that in The Daemons there was a character called Sgt. Osgood, a member of UNIT who later became its scientific advisor in the novels... and like the Osgood we saw last night, he wore big, chunky-framed glasses. Hmm."

Yeah, I noticed that. Apparently UNIT is a bit of a family business?

Also was wondering if "New Osgood" might be being set up for future appearances, since there was a whole backstory for her about her sister that was brought up but not elaborated on much. It makes more sense if it is establishing something for later rather than "here is a one-off thing which will never be revisited."

Don't know if she is being set up to actually be a companion at some point, although, as mentioned, I think the evidence may lean towards her already sort of being one.
posted by kyrademon at 9:00 AM on November 24, 2013


Here's the AVClub review.
posted by Tobu at 9:09 AM on November 24, 2013


I found it explained in the Reddit thread. The war doctor was going to blow up everyone and timelock the explosion (to contain it I suppose). End of Time has the high council going full-on evil, planning to end reality so they can sublimate to a higher plane; here we have lesser time lords explaining that the high councils have cut themselves off.

Both stories are taking place concurrently on Gallifrey, and immediately before the time lock; the council's last-ditch plan fails during the episode. What this episode establishes is that Gallifreyans are still alive inside the time lock.


There was also a line that I think nodded to that in the Moment Shed - a very brief exchange between Ten and Eleven -

"You're not really suggesting we change our own personal history, are you?"
"Why not? We change history all the time!"

So I took that as yeah, what we saw in "The End Of Time" happened - but that Ten didn't remember coming forward in time to join Eleven in going back and rectonning things later.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:14 AM on November 24, 2013


My initial reaction to the episode, "Boy, this would probably only be an hour and fifteen minutes long without all the commercial breaks!"

You should have watched the Global Simulcast earlier in the day, which had ZERO commercial breaks, and was about 75 minutes long.
posted by hippybear at 9:18 AM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


That was fantastic and a lot of fun. I'm sure there are things to quibble about, but Rose and Ten weren't as obnoxious as I feared, I got my Tom Baker (my Doctor) cameo, and my expectations, which I kept low, were met and surpassed.

Christopher Eccleston was much missed, but we suspect he'll be like Tom Baker, who missed being in the Five Doctors. Look for him in the 75th.
posted by immlass at 9:19 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Hit post too soon - I accepted the whole "Eleven was the one who went back and changed his own history" thing, what I initially wasn't happy about was what that would do to the character. Nine and Ten had to remember things as "we Time-Locked Gallifrey and killed everyone", because that was a major part of their psyches, and to take that away really was gonna throw a wrench in the characters that I was uneasy about. But when they introduced the detail that "okay, yeah, Nine and Ten helped do this but they're not going to remember it that way", I felt better.

It's weird, I just realized can accept a Time Trael plot retconning, but I can't accept Time Travel making a character's memories retconning. Not sure what that means.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:19 AM on November 24, 2013


He had a lot of not-very-nice things to say about Chris E. and how he had behaved on set and, by golly, McCoy was saying them very loudly.

Hm, I had always assumed that production wanted Eccleston back but Eccleston didn't want to come back. I hadn't really considered that Eccleston was such a headache that production doesn't want him back either. You always hear from Eccleston about how terrible the filming conditions were and how the experience was so awful. You never hear the converse, about how terrible it was to work with Eccleston. I always thought that he probably had a point and that Russell Davies was probably a bit of a demanding jerk, but thinking about it, Eccleston's whining is consistent with his having been an unreasonable prima donna.

I think the Zygons, being able to copy people, are more suited to slower creepier The Thing/who's the bad guy type of stories not the quicker paced bombast of Nu Who.

Oh man, I would love to see a Zygon on an Antarctic base story! They should have had a Zygon instead of an Ice Warrior in that recent Russian sub episode. I loved how gooey and spittley they were.

I thought it was an above-average episode, but a below average celebration of 50 years of the show.

I watched the episode back-to-back with the Adventure in Time and Space documentary, and that did make it feel a lot more celebratory, I think. And then, with the 8th Doctor minisode, the short bios on each of the previous Doctors, and the recovered 2nd Doctor serials, I think the whole event was pretty monumental. Cramming all the nostalgia into the episode itself would been overly navel-gazing.

I prefer to believe that the curator at the end is literally Tom Baker, UK actor who's involvement with scifi TV crossed streams with UNIT a few times and now works in comfortable curatorial semi retirement.

Another possibility is that when a Timelord regenerates, he or she can model his or her appearance on important individuals that she will meet and would like to model himself or herself on. The curator might just be a wise old human that left an impression on the Doctor: an impression that influenced his regeneration in the past. This also makes sense of Baker's line that sometimes the Doctor revisits his favorite faces.

I particularly like this explanation because it also opens up the possibility of cameos from the other Doctor actors. It would be pretty great to have Sylvester McCoy or Peter Davison play the Doctor's companion.
posted by painquale at 9:27 AM on November 24, 2013


Capaldi states clearly he's the 13th. And if the Mcgann movie with Eric Roberts as the master is in canon, well, the master and the doctor state he (the doctor) is HALF HUMAN, which I think Hartnell said way back in his series. So, how does Smith get beyond 12? HALF HUMAN DOCTOR DO NOT WANT!
posted by vrakatar at 9:30 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


So, how does Smith get beyond 12?

Smith regenerating into Capaldi will be his 12th regeneration. He won't have to find a way to extend his regeneration limit until after becoming Capaldi. Time Lords get 12 regenerations, which means that they get 13 bodies.
posted by painquale at 9:35 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


> It's weird, I just realized can accept a Time Trael plot retconning, but I can't accept Time Travel making a character's memories retconning. Not sure what that means.

This ep kept the past immutable, having forgotten the events allowed Ten and Eleven to retain their agency. It did break the show's usual rule that the Tardis locks out other instances of itself (which prevents the doctor from summoning an army of selves or something). Here's a short that plays with those rules.
posted by Tobu at 9:39 AM on November 24, 2013


So, how does Smith get beyond 12?
Simple, you don't count McGann or anything ever mentioned in conjunction with that awful FOX movie.
posted by MrBobaFett at 9:39 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


painquale: "I always thought that he probably had a point and that Russell Davies was probably a bit of a demanding jerk, but thinking about it, Eccleston's whining is consistent with his having been an unreasonable prima donna. "

How is it 'whining' to say you left the show in large part because the higher-ups were bullying the crew?
“You know, it’s easy to find a job when you’ve got no morals, you’ve got nothing to be compromised, you can go, ‘Yeah, yeah. That doesn’t matter. That director can bully that prop man and I won’t say anything about it’. But then when that director comes to you and says ‘I think you should play it like this’ you’ve surely got to go ‘How can I respect you, when you behave like that?’" (Source, with more.)
Granted, that's only one side of the story, and McCoy's another, but... honestly, at this point I'm convinced that the bad will towards Eccleston from fans has nothing to do with anything that actually happened and everything to do with hearsay, and his choosing not to make "being Doctor Who" a huge part of his life. Just because the other former Doctors have done so doesn't mean that we own him or are owed anything further by him.
posted by bettafish at 9:40 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Night of the Doctor has McGann and is pretty great. I'd be inclined to consider the sisterhood of Karn's controlled regeneration a freebie.
posted by Tobu at 9:42 AM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Smith regenerating into Capaldi will be his 12th regeneration. He won't have to find a way to extend his regeneration limit until after becoming Capaldi. Time Lords get 12 regenerations, which means that they get 13 bodies.

Well, and then there is River Song's thing where she gives the Doctor her regenerations, so who knows how all that affected the Doctor's natural regeneration cycles.
posted by hippybear at 9:44 AM on November 24, 2013


the bad will towards Eccleston from fans

I bear him no ill will. If anything, he has been my favorite of the NuWho Doctors. The darkness at his core that leaked out all the time made him menacing and felt exactly right for the character.
posted by hippybear at 9:47 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Night of the Doctor was meh. Tho whole portraying the Time Lords as something everyone is afraid of because they are so awful smacks of RTD stupid anti-Time Lord bias.

Also boo they had McGann. It's sad because his performance in this is pretty good and if this was what had been in the movie it would have been good. Sadly the movie is what would make him the Doctor, so since the premise it bad everything else resulting from it is bad. Once they go back and create a valid story for McGann becoming the Doctor then he can be considered. Until then it's McCoy followed by Hurt.

Glad we did get to see the Sisterhood of Karn again tho. More of this please.
posted by MrBobaFett at 9:58 AM on November 24, 2013


How is it 'whining' to say you left the show in large part because the higher-ups were bullying the crew?

I shouldn't have used that word, but this is the first time I've tried adopting the perspective that Eccleston was posturing. I've always taken Eccleston at his word and been on his side. McCoy's criticisms are the first I've heard from someone who would actually be a little closer to production than just a fan. I'm sure that we'll not know for a long time exactly what happened, if we ever do at all.
posted by painquale at 10:00 AM on November 24, 2013


Yeah, I don't think fans have ill-will towards Eccleston. I actually intially preferred him to Tennant. (Albeit briefly.)

I've heard that, about what Eccleston said the filming was like, and if what Sylvester was saying was true kind of underscores what I thought that was all about - that Eccleston actually liked doing the show in concept, and was proud of his work, but there was just a personality clash between Eccleston and Davies that just made it unpleasant for both of them. I've heard that Moffat reached out to him for the return, and they actually were talking about it for a little while.

But that being the case, I do totally understand why Eccleston would lay low, and have no ill will about that. There's people I've also worked for that it didn't go well, even though I knew I was doing good work, and I'd also avoid revisiting those moments myself.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:01 AM on November 24, 2013


But that being the case, I do totally understand why Eccleston would lay low, and have no ill will about that.

I for one also have no ill will toward him. I just feel he was the worst of the new Doctors and if this episode wasn't going to have much of the Doctors in any sort of significant roles, missing Eccleston's is just fine with me.
posted by juiceCake at 10:03 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Doesn't he now have license to be a complete prick as he seeks his new goal?

If so, casting Malcolm Tucker was a masterstroke.
posted by jason_steakums at 10:31 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Both Billie Piper and John Barrowman have said judiciously that Eccleston was "grumpy" and "very serious" about the work, which made the long, cold hours filming in Cardiff miserable for everyone who worked with him. It sounds like Eccleston wanted nothing more to do with Who, and Who wanted nothing more to do with Eccleston.

It's a shame--I liked the special well enough, but Eccleston's absence was sort of this giant "almost got it" hanging over every scene. Oh well.
posted by tzikeh at 10:56 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Considering the responsibility of bringing the show back to an old and a new viewership, I think Eccleston did a damn fine job. No ill will at all.
posted by vrakatar at 11:02 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


[Spoilers for the last three years of NuWho as well as this episode]

I really really really enjoyed the episode, a LOT more than I enjoyed any other episode in recent memory. But I also really really really hated the final decision, and I'm squarely on the side of "total cop-out retcon". It doesn't matter to me if Nine and Ten still think their grief was real - to the viewer, this thing that has basically shaped the last 7 years of Who is handwaved away as "it's okay he didn't ACTUALLY commit genocide he just shoved them into stasis and forgot about it for 400 years".

Especially when you see it in context of who Matt Smith's Doctor had become: he has destroyed two ancient races of people. He has shut away that part of himself so deep that he doesn't even remember it. He's spent 400 years running away from it, but in forgetting who he was, becomes that person he never wanted to be again. He orders humanity to murder The Silence on sight. He sees people around him as problems to be solved, not ends in themselves. The fact that he'd grown too big for himself is the thesis of the devastating episode The God Complex. Demon's Run was all about how The Doctor has turned a word that used to mean "healer" because of how many people he saved into a word that means "fearsome warrior". All of season 6 was about how he had become so dangerous that an entire future of people were willing to use his companion as an incubator to breed an assassin specifically designed for him. (I have much contempt for this storyline, fwiw.) For everything else that I dislike about what Moffat's done with Doctor Who recently, I thought there was a good undercurrent of discussion of how myth overtakes man that was really worthwhile. The Doctor himself knows he's gotten too big.

But all of that gets wiped away now that 11 knows he never actually destroyed his own people, because he didn't make that one mistake that changed his life and his world. He doesn't have Timelord blood on his hands, doesn't have to atone for anything. What Hurt said, about his pain turning him into a good person who is constantly seeking to make up for what he did, that had a lot of resonance with me - but with this retcon, what 11 knows is that he was oh-so-clever that he even fooled himself. It makes the Doctor infallible.

Plus it completely changes the Doctor's motivation for him to now be looking for Gallifrey. Even the first Doctor was a rogue - he stole a time machine and ran away. He is horrified by who the Timelords had become - cruel and uncaring and bureaucratic and unkind. He didn't want anything to do with them before the Timewar, and he has always been a lone agent. If we now have him focused solely on finding the Timelords as a goal, and we start bringing in other Timelords, it changes his nomadic lone-wolf nature, but more importantly it shifts his fundamental motivation from "curiosity and joy in the wonders of the universe" to "looking for home". I just really really don't trust Stephen Moffat to pull off that kind of emotional reversal without falling into a hole of self-satisfaction about how clever he is and ruining a few more beloved Who institutions in the process.

Also my main disappointment with the Gallifrey setpiece is like...the Timelords can manipulate freaking time, and the Daleks are the most feared creatures in the universe. Are we really going to have their epic, universe-destroying, time-burning fight being fought with lasers and fighter planes?

(I know all of that makes it sound like I hated it. I LOVED it. I'm just rather afraid of what this means for Who going forward.)

Having said that, I nth An Adventure in Space and Time as absolutely excellent. A perfectly judged self-encapsulated 90 minutes. Highly recommended.
posted by Phire at 11:03 AM on November 24, 2013 [9 favorites]


PS: Matt Smith and David Tennant in unison was an absolute delight, as was John Hurt's utter disgust with those whippersnappers. I giggled any time those three were snapping at each other. Sand shoes and chins!
posted by Phire at 11:08 AM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I posted this in the other thread, but I'll mention it here: I predict that the young woman with the scarf will be a new companion. Some people have thought that Tom Baker's character gave her the scarf, but I assumed that she made the scarf as a tribute, as a young Doctor Who fan does. She's a starry-eyed fan who knows all about the Doctor through her connections at UNIT. She's always kind of hovering around the Doctor in the episode, and whenever he speaks to her, she has to reach for her inhaler.

If that's her backstory, she'd be a pretty funny companion: a stand-in for the rabid nerdy fan of the show. She could sling out trivia about the Doctor's old adventures and constantly ask him about continuity, and he could keep saying that he's forgotten, that he's already rewritten that part of history, that he was just joking when he said that he was half-human, etc. I think a character like that would pair really well with Capaldi's older Doctor. He could be a father figure or mentor to her. Tom Baker's appearance has prompted a lot of internet testimonials about how audiences found companionship and solace in the Doctor when growing up in unhappy childhoods. This was also a theme of the Adventure in Time and Space documentary. Now that the Doctor is allowed to be an adult again, I think they are going to take the series this way. A fan surrogate makes a perfect companion. The Zygon who mimicked her already mentioned that she has self-esteem issues; this is something she'll conquer over the course of the series.

Although, I am worried that Moffat will write a scene where she takes off her glasses and is presented as going from nerd girl to hot chick.
posted by painquale at 11:12 AM on November 24, 2013 [14 favorites]


painquale: "I shouldn't have used that word, but this is the first time I've tried adopting the perspective that Eccleston was posturing. I've always taken Eccleston at his word and been on his side. McCoy's criticisms are the first I've heard from someone who would actually be a little closer to production than just a fan. I'm sure that we'll not know for a long time exactly what happened, if we ever do at all."

Okay, I see what you were getting at, and fair enough. I guess my one question would be: is McCoy more than a fan, in that position? I'm sure he has insider connections, but unless he actually visited the set (did he?), then he's running off of hearsay, just like the rest of us.

Glad to see Eccleston has his supporters here -- I've seen a lot of crankiness from Doctor Who fandom over his (ostensibly) choosing not to participate, but evidently I was just hanging out in the wrong parts.
posted by bettafish at 11:34 AM on November 24, 2013


But all of that gets wiped away now that 11 knows he never actually destroyed his own people, because he didn't make that one mistake that changed his life and his world. He doesn't have Timelord blood on his hands, doesn't have to atone for anything.

He's been absolved of that crime, essentially, but he still had the long experience of regret and self-hatred for that decision, which is how we learn and gain wisdom, even when we manage to escape the worst in the end.
posted by sonascope at 11:42 AM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


But all of that gets wiped away now that 11 knows he never actually destroyed his own people, because he didn't make that one mistake that changed his life and his world. He doesn't have Timelord blood on his hands, doesn't have to atone for anything. What Hurt said, about his pain turning him into a good person who is constantly seeking to make up for what he did, that had a lot of resonance with me - but with this retcon, what 11 knows is that he was oh-so-clever that he even fooled himself. It makes the Doctor infallible.

Nnnnnnot really - because from Eleven's perspective, he's only just finding out about that now. He still went through 400 years thinking he HAD destroyed them, and having that perspective still shaped him and guided his actions accordingly for those 400 years. He doesn't lose the 400 years just because of this, no more than I'd lose my feelings about my father if I found out today that he was actually my uncle or something.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:42 AM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


And the only reason I didn't beat sonascope to that is because I'm on a tablet.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:43 AM on November 24, 2013


Oh sure, blame the equipment.
posted by hippybear at 11:44 AM on November 24, 2013


The tablet is a scientific device, not a water pistol!
posted by The Whelk at 11:46 AM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Not the tablet's fault as such - I usually type faster than Donna Noble, but only with a proper keyboard.

About the Tennant/Smith chemistry - I've heard they had so much fun they actually at one point asked Moffat if they could do more than just one episode together.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:50 AM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


I've heard they had so much fun they actually at one point asked Moffat if they could do more than just one episode together.

I suspect if they were having so much fun, it was because of the foil that Hurt provided. He was brilliant, and his part was written brilliantly. How often do you find old-school sniping about current reboots embodied within the reboot?

I repeat my statement from another post -- John Hurt should be in everything.
posted by hippybear at 11:55 AM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Ooh, I want an episode with Tennant/Smith in a 2-on-2 Doctor-off with Hurt/Capaldi. (Or McCann/Capaldi). Youngs vs. Olds.
posted by painquale at 11:56 AM on November 24, 2013


I posted this in the other thread, but I'll mention it here: I predict that the young woman with the scarf will be a new companion. ... The Zygon who mimicked her already mentioned that she has self-esteem issues

What would be really rude is if her more attractive sister became the new companion.
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:57 AM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


Incidentally, speaking of the Doctor's relationship with the Time Lords/Gallifrey, I was rewatching An Unearthly Child last night, and noticed something which turned out to have great (and probably deliberate) synergy with The Day of the Doctor.

The First Doctor's most famous speech is his farewell to Susan, "One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then, there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine."

What I didn't notice before was that said speech was a callback to the first episode, when he says: "Susan and I are cut off from our own planet, without friends or protection. But one day, we shall get back. Yes, one day."

The new spiritual direction of the show is, in a way, hearkening back to its very beginnings.
posted by bettafish at 12:00 PM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


My hope is that the eventual return of the Timelords, chastened, if we're lucky, by the experience and given a new monastic sense of purpose in repairing the damage they've done to the cosmos, serves to free the Doctor from constantly being drawn into problems of a cosmological nature and allowing him to get back to localized doctoring, to attending to the smaller crimes and misdemeanors to be found along the way in his travels. In the past, he was given over to be a sort of superintendent for the Earth, and this was justified by the roles of humanity in some key cosmological-scale events, and the Tardis lovingly curated his attention through cultivated "unreliability" when it came to other needs in other places.
posted by sonascope at 12:17 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was introduced to Doctor Who around 1980 when L.A.'s most unnecessary TV station, Channel 52, threw the original 25-minute version opposite Star Trek reruns Monday-Friday (they had so much trouble selling ads, they didn't need to edit it down). But even though they were running old black-and-white sitcom reruns (I think The Addams Family followed it), they started with the first color episodes with Jon Pertwee stuck on earth and working with UNIT. (So the second-generation UNIT elements in the 50A show were fine with me)

But MY Doctor was still Tom Baker (so his role as The Curator was 100% SQUEEE for me, regardless of his actual identity, whatever it is). For me, The Doctor had to be, for lack of a better word, flamboyant, so when my first look at the NuWho gave me Chris Eccleston with shortshort black hair and a black leather jacket, I yelled at the screen "NO! The Doctor is NOT '80s Punk!!!"(although in his lighter moments, he resembled Men At Work's Colin Hay, one of the era's most humorously creepy personalities). Suffice it to say, I did not miss Chris, especially since (if I may repeat it for the umpteenth time) I predicted the scene where the War Doctor regenerated into #9 without his participation.

The Tennant/Smith chemistry did not surprise me, but one of my favorite moments was one when they worked perfectly in tandem.

I wouldn't mind seeing Ms Osgood as a recurring character/companion, although scenes together with Doctor Capaldi and Clara would be like a 3-way competition for "smartest person in the room". Clara already looks to be a solid challenge for any arrogance Capaldi brings to the role. But also, Osgood and Oswald (?)... let's NOT turn the Doctor in the Wizard of Ozzes. Of course, a reunion with Craig Owens would be nice too...

And since I'm mentioning Craigs, Peter Capaldi's old friend CBS' Craig Ferguson would be a fine bit of stunt casting (although that is something that Who has NEVER been in the habit of doing). Still, if they ever intend to regenerate The Master, he'd bring something fresh to that role (but no robot sidekick PLEASE).
(semi-related giggle)
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:24 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


I have no evidence for this, but to me the UNIT stuff, especially Osgood, felt more like the beginnings of a spin-off than the origin story of a new companion. Neither of the DW spinoffs are on the air anymore, so I'd imagine the BBC would be pretty interested in a show with the same setup as Torchwood but with a similar tone as The Sarah Jane Chronicles.
posted by Ian A.T. at 12:32 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


He's been absolved of that crime, essentially, but he still had the long experience of regret and self-hatred for that decision, which is how we learn and gain wisdom, even when we manage to escape the worst in the end.

This seems to be the dividing line between people who like the decision to save Gallifrey and people who don't. It seems like people who don't like it think it invalidates all of the Doctor's genuine pain and guilt over the destruction of Gallifrey, because it didn't really happen. But I'm one of the ones who did like it, and it's because it doesn't entirely matter to me what the objective reality of it was, just the subjective reality. It's just like Empress Callipygos says, it doesn't change my feelings about my father or all of our shared memories if I find out he's really not my father.

Also, I find I'm fine with this retcon specifically because it preserves the subjective reality of the Doctor destroying Gallifrey. I hate when retcons destroy or eliminate the subjective reality of the character subject to the retcon, because then you wonder what the hell the point of it all was. The whole story loses its impact beyond some dramatic irony, because in effect it never happened. It's part of why I absolutely hated what happened to Donna: sure she lived, and she still had all of her experiences with the Doctor in objective reality. But in her subjective reality, it never happened.

The other major reason the saving Gallifrey retcon works for me is that it's sort of a Schrodinger's cat thing, isn't it? We can think of Gallifrey like being Schrodinger's cat until The Day of the Doctor: it might be alive or dead, depending on what the Doctors do on the Day of the Doctor. (This also resonates nicely with the quantum mechanics book the Doctor is reading in the TARDIS when Clara comes in.) When the Doctor comes up with a way to save Gallifrey, it's the equivalent of observing the cat or seeing what side the coin landed on. He's just chosen an outcome that's been in flux for four hundred years until he chose it. I don't know if I'm explaining that right, but it's the time-wimey version of events that makes sense to me.
posted by yasaman at 12:38 PM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


A fun bit of fanbaiting that would have been brilliant, though I certainly understand why they didn't do it:

"Sir! All twelve Doctors have materialized around Gallifrey! [a shot of multiple TARDISes] No, all thirteen! [a shot of Capaldi's eyebrows] No, wait! All 507!" [a shot of the planet completely swarmed with TARDISes]

Since the BBC built a perfect recreation of the Hartnell-era Tardis set for An Adventure in Space and Time, I was hoping they would take advantage and somehow work it into the plot for this episode.

When they're in the TARDIS and the control room is jumping between configurations, wouldn't it have been great if they'd jumped to that set for just a split second? Just long enough to see the faces of all three Doctors light up with delighted grins, like seeing your first car again after so many years...
posted by Ian A.T. at 12:48 PM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


I kept expecting Graham Chapman to keep coming onscreen in a Colonel's uniform and breaking in:

"Right, right, stop it. This programme's got silly. Started off with a nice little idea, but now it's got silly."

"I've noticed a tendency for this programme to get rather silly. Now I do my best to keep things moving along, but I'm not having things getting silly."

The Tenth Doctor: "Using our TARDISes, we're going to freeze Gallifrey in a single moment in Time."
Colonel: "No, no; this is silly."
The Tenth Doctor: "What's silly?"
Colonel: "The whole premise is silly and it's very badly written. I'm the senior officer here, so I'm stopping it."


Eccleston was far and away the best of the NuWho Doctors. He could express more by changing the line of his mouth than the other two could with half an hour of running around like chickens with their heads cut off, waving their arms like Kermit the Frog, and generally being poster boys for Lithium. I dunno, maybe Eccleston just got better scripts. Reading his reasons for leaving takes the sting out of it, because it increases my respect for him as a human and an artist.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 1:08 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


So has there been any discussion of HOW they did that shot of all 12 Doctors?
posted by DarlingBri at 1:09 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


It looked like very, very obvious CGI to me.

Either that or they just set up these action figures in front of a fog machine.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 1:11 PM on November 24, 2013 [8 favorites]


I have no evidence for this, but to me the UNIT stuff, especially Osgood, felt more like the beginnings of a spin-off than the origin story of a new companion.

BBC's Agents Of U.N.I.T., premiering this fall on ABC. All they need is a really unconvincing CGI aircraft and to identify the odd-one-out character, who comes from outside and doesn't play by the rules but is of course the key to the team's success.
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:13 PM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


A fan surrogate makes a perfect companion.

I'm currently very disenchanted with fandoms of all kinds and the power they feel they should wield over "their" media, so I can't imagine anything worse personally. Though Osgood would be fun as a recurring character in Earth stories that feature U.N.I.T.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 1:20 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Apparently UNIT is a bit of a family business?

Standard feature of all (real life) British originated secret bureaucracies and besides, when you're trying to save the world from knowning too much about all the weird and scary shit that goes on outside their window, better to limit your employees as much as possible to people who have already been caught up in that weird shit.

It would not surprise me if many of the doctor's companions end up working for UNIT or Torchwood behind the scenes, voluntarily or ... otherwise.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:21 PM on November 24, 2013


My take is that I don't get to see it until Monday night because I live in one of the cities where it was not simulcast in theaters and my bastard friend wants to see it in 3D so badly that we aren't allowed to watch it until we see it there.
posted by wierdo at 1:24 PM on November 24, 2013


Yes, having 13 TARDISes in that scene does kind of limit the future of the show. "Sorry Peter, you have to stay on for 20+ years, you're playing the Last Doctor."

One thought on the 'Daleks wipe each other out' problem... their weapons are wide-angle death rays intended to cover the entire planet to get every Galifreyan - if the planet's not there, they just fan out even wider hitting ALL their own ships (some loss of intensity, but the Daleks were always masters of over-acting, so the weapons will be powerful enough).

During the episode, I did think to myself how BBC's UNIT was seriously outclassing ABC's SHIELD, and therefore should NOT be a spin-off.

Of course, if you're going to try another Who spin-off, you could just fill in a big hole with a limited (6-12 episode) series of "The Eighth Doctor", starting with the first five minutes of the FOX movie and then retconning the rest of that out of existence, then ending with the "Night of the Doctor" for the last six minutes. And have the showrunner be NOT MOFFAT. THAT's fan service.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:25 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


If that's her backstory, she'd be a pretty funny companion: a stand-in for the rabid nerdy fan of the show.

Yeah, let's pander to anorak stereotypes some more. All geeks have asthma and inappropriate crushes on people out of their league ha ha.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:30 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Although, I am worried that Moffat will write a scene where she takes off her glasses and is presented as going from nerd girl to hot chick.

She's already "hot", just wears frumpy and baggy clothing to make her look "fat" (as opposed to waif like Clara) and glasses always symbolises ugliness in women,l but when she wasn't trying to act asthmatic she looked actually quite pretty. So that scene will come one way or another.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:38 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


So did this show pass the Bechdel test? Clara did have a conversation with Kate that wasn't entirely about the Doctor. But on the other hand that wasn't really Kate...
posted by George_Spiggott at 1:43 PM on November 24, 2013


I'm seeing on my facebook feed that my 25th year reunion was also yesterday. I honestly think I picked the right reunion to visit.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:43 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oops, wrong thread.
posted by homunculus at 2:16 PM on November 24, 2013


I must say, the idea of a UNIT spin-off is growing on me. It's doable, too - The Madame Vastra Adventures was a lovely idea, but with all that makeup and the period setting, it would be a bit expensive. But they could do UNIT quite inexpensively - it's modern day and all stock props. I didn't really get Kate the last time, but seeing her interact with Osgood - having higher status on her own turf, I suppose - I liked the character more. And I like Osgood, too - obviously a caricature, but that's actually not a bad way to start characters off. If you think about it, all the characters in Breaking Bad started out as caricatures of one kind or another. The question is whether they come to life when you put an actor into them, and in this case I think so (she's a comedian called Ingrid Oliver, who's done a fair amount of stuff, none of which I've seen, but I think she's probably had a lot of practise at getting into characters quite quickly). The other one, the Scottish bloke, is a bit forgettable, but I'm sure they could work something up. Perhaps they could give it to the Sarah Jane Adventures team.

I mean, it would be fun. That would be nice, wouldn't it? Fun?
posted by Grangousier at 2:52 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Also, wouldn't this sort of rewrite the doctor's motivations? Doesn't he now have license to be a complete prick as he seeks his new goal?

The War Doctor still witnessed the use of all those horrific megaweapons in the war up to that point, that stuff is still in the Doctor's memory.

What I like about this is the possibility that the Zygons worked it out with Unit, and maybe were persuaded themselves to, in the words of the Tick, "knock off all that evil," and maybe co-exist in one of the more isolated parts of Earth. It might be fun to have Zygons lurking around, although I suspect, with their shapechanging abilities, they would be in much demand as employees of spy agencies. (Fanfiction idea?)
posted by JHarris at 3:06 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I suspect, with their shapechanging abilities, they would be in much demand as employees of spy agencies.

In that case, the Zygons could end up working for UNIT. (The spin-off is looking better all the time)
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:09 PM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Of course! The Zygons! The UNIT Spin-Off Team would be Kate, Osgood, the dull Scottish bloke and a Zygon on secondment, who can be pretty much anybody. It would be Mission Impossible, but with a scarf. I mean, they spent all that money on a Zygon costume, they ought to get some use out of it.

I'm sold, anyway.
posted by Grangousier at 3:09 PM on November 24, 2013 [8 favorites]


Also, I find I'm fine with this retcon specifically because it preserves the subjective reality of the Doctor destroying Gallifrey. I hate when retcons destroy or eliminate the subjective reality of the character subject to the retcon, because then you wonder what the hell the point of it all was. The whole story loses its impact beyond some dramatic irony, because in effect it never happened. It's part of why I absolutely hated what happened to Donna: sure she lived, and she still had all of her experiences with the Doctor in objective reality. But in her subjective reality, it never happened.

See, and that's what I thought was clever about the Donna thing, it was so tragic precisely because it was so unfair. I mean, they didn't have to do it to her, and honestly if she just stayed in play in the end so she could pop in any time as companion I'd love it - Donna would have been a wonderful glass of cold water in 11's face when he got too full of himself. "Oi! Bowtie! Stop mucking about with Hitler and act like a Time Lord!"

But as much as I love Donna as companion, I really do like how her ending was handled just because it's the most tragic of all companions' ends in a way that trumps death - we've seen the death of companions before, but going on living but completely forgetting that you once transcended your dull, earthbound life and saved the universe in ways that the Doctor couldn't have ever done without you is an even worse fate somehow. I don't think it would have worked completely without Wilt there to be her surrogate for expressing the pain of the loss, though.

The other major reason the saving Gallifrey retcon works for me is that it's sort of a Schrodinger's cat thing, isn't it? We can think of Gallifrey like being Schrodinger's cat until The Day of the Doctor: it might be alive or dead, depending on what the Doctors do on the Day of the Doctor. (This also resonates nicely with the quantum mechanics book the Doctor is reading in the TARDIS when Clara comes in.)

I did love the TARDIS branding on that book, because of course the TARDIS writes and publishes its own books.
posted by jason_steakums at 3:15 PM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


"Yes, having 13 TARDISes in that scene does kind of limit the future of the show. "Sorry Peter, you have to stay on for 20+ years, you're playing the Last Doctor.""

Nah, you can have have more Doctors in the future without breaking this episode. If we posit, for the moment, that the Capaldi Doctor comes up with a way to beat the regeneration limit (or it was already beaten by incidents that have happened in the past, as some here have mentioned) then it's reasonable for Doctors 14 and up to not take part in saving Gallifrey, because they know thirteen Doctors were enough to accomplish the job. If they don't remember being there, then it's probably a good idea to stay away, lest they change the outcome.
posted by Kevin Street at 3:16 PM on November 24, 2013


Yeah, just like the door calculation in the sonic screwdrivers only took from Hurt to Smith, the calculations for their Gallifrey-saving maneuver were started with Hartnell (in a scene I wish they would have shot with Bradley, going back to get him to start the calculations) and were finished with Capaldi's Doctor.
posted by jason_steakums at 3:18 PM on November 24, 2013


All geeks have asthma and inappropriate crushes on people out of their league ha ha.

I like this better than when geeks and nerds are all confident, athletic, tattoed hipsters wearing lensless frames.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:27 PM on November 24, 2013


Osgood was awesome (and, in my opinion, far more crushworthy than Clara because I dig geeky girls with glasses). I'd love to see her as a companion that grows into herself.
posted by kariebookish at 3:31 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yes, having 13 TARDISes in that scene does kind of limit the future of the show.

When I saw all those TARDISes and all the Dalek ships around Gallifrey, I could not help but think of the scene where we see Ace Rimmer's little a coffin ejected into orbit around a planet, amongst millions of other little Ace Rimmer coffins.
posted by charlie don't surf at 3:31 PM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


Guys what if we all went on a doctor adventure at some point but our memory got erased and the only side effect is a wistful andoddly strong connecion with space adventure ?
posted by The Whelk at 3:34 PM on November 24, 2013 [9 favorites]


Another running theme of the Agents of UNIT show would be our growing suspicion that Kate, the team leader, is really her Zygon copy and still doesn't know it herself.
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:48 PM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


Also Osgood would be paired off with a nerdy Scottish boy scientist and oh shit I'll shut up now
posted by George_Spiggott at 3:48 PM on November 24, 2013


She's already "hot", just wears frumpy and baggy clothing to make her look "fat" (as opposed to waif like Clara) and glasses always symbolises ugliness in women,l but when she wasn't trying to act asthmatic she looked actually quite pretty.

Um, if those glasses were to symbolize ugliness THEY WEREN'T WORKING
posted by scrowdid at 3:50 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


I've just uncovered a bit of a fight amongst knitters: Osgood's scarf wasn't identical to Tom Baker's! Oh no!
posted by kariebookish at 3:50 PM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


oh shit I'll shut up now

Also if they have access to the Undergallery and dangerous art works I should mention I've been breaking a series like this and have studied art history for over a decade please hire me
posted by The Whelk at 3:53 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I've just uncovered a bit of a fight amongst knitters:

The Knitting War has amused me for days and just proves there's someone even crazier and obsessive than SF fans. At least we can handwave issues away.

(Although, I have been reading The Prisoners Of Time comic, and the scarf randomly appears on the page a few times. It's like there was no editor on the project. I demand someone's head).
posted by Mezentian at 3:54 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


There has to be another way out of The Knitting War, something that doesn't end in genocide.
posted by The Whelk at 3:58 PM on November 24, 2013 [14 favorites]


Last night's simultaneous broadcast of The Day of the Doctor to 94 countries has been officially named the world's largest-ever simulcast of a TV drama.

Good work everyone! I must find a list of all 94 countries. Because that's amazing.
posted by Mezentian at 3:58 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Although, can Guiness be trusted? I mean, this is about as error-riddled as a Hartnell episode.
posted by Mezentian at 4:00 PM on November 24, 2013


> "There has to be another way out of The Knitting War, something that doesn't end in genocide."

Not even with 50 Doctors working on the problem.

A Dalek is as nothing compared to the wrath of an enraged Knitter.
posted by kyrademon at 4:02 PM on November 24, 2013


One lone crocheter will show us the way.
posted by The Whelk at 4:04 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


freya_lamb: I was chuffed to see that Paul McGann took up his rightful place too (full disclosure: I loved him in the film).

Fans of McGann have to watch this short prelude to Day of the Doctor that was released a few weeks ago - Night of the Doctor
posted by memebake at 4:12 PM on November 24, 2013


According to this Strax showed up ahead of the UK cinema screenings to teach etiquette, among other facts.
posted by Mezentian at 4:19 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Another running theme of the Agents of UNIT show would be our growing suspicion that Kate, the team leader, is really her Zygon copy and still doesn't know it herself.

That's nothing, you should hear about who (or what) runs The Laundry....
posted by JHarris at 4:22 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Re: Yes Osgood, I liked the character but I thought there was one trip-up. I mean aside from the hilariously cliche over the top "I AM A NERD!" characterisation. When the Zygon is bearing down on her by the elevator and she is begging/insisting that the Doctor will save her, we get the villainous exposition about the sister1, and then she saves herself -- using the Doctor's scarf. That was a delightful little character building moment, one that carried through later when Yes and ZygonYes shared a little moment when they realised who was who and decided to keep quiet about it.

EXCEPT, between all that was a reversion to helpless Yes2, where she again was begging for the Doctor to come save her.

Pity.

1. I heard the name Osgood and for a moment could not remember between the -wins and the -walds and whatever exactly what Clara's last name was and thought it would be amusing if Clara was the sister. But no, that does not fit.

2. Yes I know her name is not actually Yes but I find this much more amusing.

posted by dumbland at 4:32 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


> "According to this Strax showed up ahead of the UK cinema screenings to teach etiquette, among other facts."

Indeed he did. Ah, the tiny screams of the popcorn ...

Also Matt Smith accidentally welcoming us to the 100th Anniversary Special, in 12-D, with all 57 Doctors.
posted by kyrademon at 4:34 PM on November 24, 2013 [6 favorites]


The Strax and Matt Smith warning/welcome was also shown in US theaters.
posted by plastic_animals at 4:38 PM on November 24, 2013


According to NuWho lore, there is no more limit to the number of regenerations the Doctor can have: Doctor Who is now immortal, reveals the BBC

Trust me when I say that the BBC will not be killing off Doctor Who as long as it brings in the ratings needed to keep it going. Number of regenerations be damned.
posted by docjohn at 4:39 PM on November 24, 2013


According to NuWho lore, there is no more limit to the number of regenerations the Doctor can have

No, the SJA line was always treated as a joke, and Moffatt has talked about the limit and his plans to deal with it.
posted by Mezentian at 5:15 PM on November 24, 2013


Apparently it's more complicated than that (see this), but the upshot is that the regeneration limit will be bypassed/explained and there will be no effective limit to the Doctor's future. Seriously, why would there be?
posted by docjohn at 5:22 PM on November 24, 2013


My favorite single element of the run-up to the episode was this BBC America promo: "Things You Won't Hear on the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Episode". Especially appropriate when I realized how many quotes and catchphrases from Who were reused or lampshaded in the episode... (Still, I was disappointed they didn't include any "Beam me up Scotty" or "Where we're going, we don't need roads")

...the regeneration limit will be bypassed/explained and there will be no effective limit to the Doctor's future. Seriously, why would there be?
Only if the Power of the Pedants could be greater than Power of BBC's Beancounters. So, no chance. Moffatt will find away, and if he doesn't, he will be replaced by someone who can.
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:27 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


Not having a regeneration limit does not mean immortality. The master did not die (until he was resurrected....) because he ran out of regenerations. The tension has always been because the Doctor would die without being able to regenerate for reasons other than hitting the threshold of allowable regenerations...
posted by asra at 5:29 PM on November 24, 2013


Yes! I mean, Capaldi can be replaced by another Dobby Doctor!
posted by Mezentian at 5:33 PM on November 24, 2013


Oh I suppose that apart from a few halfways-decent rock bands in the 60s and part of the 70s, Who's one of the better exported leftover mystery-meats of the UK. Despite the Tardis ripping off C.S. Lewis' wardrobe and all.

But admit that I've loved it? not for a thousand time-rides. Funny that, back in the Tom Baker era, I was forced to move close to Canada to see it. And now once again, iPlayer TV doesn't work in the US ... have to pick it up as a leftover. It's just not right. Kniggets.
posted by Twang at 5:35 PM on November 24, 2013


The Strax and Matt Smith warning/welcome was also shown in US theaters.

And Australian cinemas. And in Germany... and I'm pretty sure, everywhere it was screened.
posted by crossoverman at 5:47 PM on November 24, 2013


It probably got mention one of the other threads on this, but I had more than a little giggle at Tennat's "Oh you've redecorated; I don't like it" call back to a previous multi-Doctor episode. Though I find it amusing that it was Tennant saying to Smith, since the latter has clearly been channeling Troughton (whereas the former is clearly a Baker fanboy, not that there's anything wrong with that). Just look at the linked clip and tell me you couldn't swap Smith into that scene.
posted by Panjandrum at 5:54 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


> All geeks have asthma and inappropriate crushes on people out of their league ha ha

Do people really think that other people can be out of their league? That leagues exist? I've always been a dork, never a geek, so I wouldn't know.
posted by The corpse in the library at 6:12 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


Tennant's Doctor is, I believe, channelling Davison.
I think that was made pretty clear in interviews and Time Crash.
posted by Mezentian at 6:14 PM on November 24, 2013


Put me down as another fan who was super apprehensive about this and was won over. That was a fun romp with some delightful callbacks and was not full of immediately glaring plot holes, as many of the other recent 'epic' episodes have been. And I was really tired of Rose and 10 by the time they left the show, and never really loved Clara- but all three were brilliant here. I also enjoyed how they fixed the ridiculous Elizabeth marriage subplot as well as they could, by having the Doctor's 'seduction' of her be just a ruse to get her to expose herself as a Zygon (at least, that's how I read that whole situation).
posted by showbiz_liz at 6:19 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


A second viewing, this time with captioning on (damned middle-aged ears) to catch little bits of conversation I missed the first time, greatly improved my appreciation of the movie.
posted by plastic_animals at 6:44 PM on November 24, 2013


Tom Baker's scarf is garter stitch, Osgood's is stockinette stitch.

Good as John Hurt was, it felt like a ploy to up the number of regens on Moffat's watch so he gets to write around the 13th regen. After all, McGann could've BEEN the War Doctor instead of regenerating into the War Doctor. And did anyone else get the impression that the random glass globe might contain the missing Gallifrey?

Nthing praise for An Adventure in Space and Time. And the Five-ish Doctors Reboot.

Looking forward to Capaldi. Also looking forward to a change in showrunner, maybe for season 9?
posted by rikschell at 6:46 PM on November 24, 2013


My favorite single element of the run-up to the episode was this BBC America promo: "Things You Won't Hear on the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Episode"

They showed an extended version of that in the BBC America run-up to the show, where you also hear Matt Smith's (much better) take on "KHAAAAAAAAN!" and David Tennant's take on "Hasta la vista, baby" (followed by an ad-libbed declaration that he should be governor of California).

They're both kind of endearingly deplorable.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:14 PM on November 24, 2013


A second viewing, this time with captioning on (damned middle-aged ears) to catch little bits of conversation I missed the first time, greatly improved my appreciation of the movie.

....Okay, there was one thing that seemed to be a running joke that I kept on not quite hearing, so maybe you can clear this up for me - did Eleven keep teasing Ten about "sex in the TARDIS" early on?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:16 PM on November 24, 2013


I don't know what it was, but I heard that line twice as well.
Of course, it can't be.
I prefer to think that The Doctor (especially the Eleventh) would use the phrase "hanky panky", though.
posted by Mezentian at 7:32 PM on November 24, 2013


"venom sacs in the tongue" I believe he was saying, about the Zygon that had kissed Ten.
posted by dumbland at 8:12 PM on November 24, 2013


Well, since classic episodes seemed to make it clear that the Time Lord Council had the ability to overcome the 12 regenerations limit, which came up as an option for the Master at one point*, it makes sense to me that finding Gallifrey will also provide the opportunity for the Doctor to deal with his regeneration limit. Hopefully it will be more interesting of an adventure than just asking the Council for help.

* unless I am completely misremembering that.
posted by insert.witticism.here at 8:13 PM on November 24, 2013


Yes, it's the offer to The Master in The Five Doctors: a fresh regeneration cycle. And presumably they did that for both Rassilon and The Master during the Time War, back when they were being all mean and scary and using the forbidden weapons like the D-Mat Gun, and not being sweet and lovely parents.

(And, really, two billion children? Either they were growing soldiers, or they're more prolific breeders than we had ever been given to believe.)
posted by Mezentian at 8:21 PM on November 24, 2013


it's the offer to The Master in The Five Doctors: a fresh regeneration cycle.

Ah! I had forgotten that. That changes things.
posted by vrakatar at 8:27 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]




Mistakes
Plot hole. Doctor Who (BBC, 1963-2013).


Oh, that is so on the money.
posted by Mezentian at 8:38 PM on November 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Mezentian beat me to it but, yes, there were a couple mentions of "venom sacs in the tongue" but nothing of sex in the TARDIS.
posted by plastic_animals at 8:38 PM on November 24, 2013


I'm going to start up a band to cover extreme death metal songs in a jazz style.
It'll be called Zygon Venom Sax.
posted by Mezentian at 8:41 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


The silly thing about the regeneration limit is that it's so trivial to write a way out of, it's been circumvented before, there are outs already in place that work in continuity or at least in the tone of the show, either from special Time War circumstances that got it upped, or absorbing River's regenerative energy, or "the Doctor lied", or just some flip one-liner "Oh that? I solved that problem ages ago." or a million other things, but it's always been The Rule as soon as it was said out loud in a scene. And it's always been a silly rule to be The Rule because everyone has always known that if the show was successful and lasted that many Doctors they wouldn't shut it all down for some in-story technicality.

I think all anyone really wants with the limit thing is just for the writers to quit dancing around it and spill their solution, even if it's just basically handwaving it away, and then just move on. I'd actually be totally fine with them taking the piss out of it - if 11 didn't see or doesn't remember seeing 12 in the Time War and he's all agonizing over this being his last life, really hamming up the death scene with wailing and gnashing of teeth (I propose "Tennanting" is the word for this), and then bam! Regeneration! And Capaldi just kind of goes "...or not. Well, nevermind, things to do. Where were we?" and it's never mentioned again.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:46 PM on November 24, 2013 [5 favorites]


Dear Mr Moffatt,

In the BBC novel The Bodysnatchers, it clearly states that Zygor was destroyed when the Zygons' enemies, the arachnid alien race from Tau Ceti, the Xaranti caused a stellar explosion, probably by destroying its sun. Can you please explain this apparent discrepancy, perhaps in an upcoming episode?

And further, Mr Terrance Dicks, says that in the Zygons have venom sacs in their hands, not their tongues. Unless the Zygons were bred specifically for conflict with the New Era Doctor, what's up with that?

Regards,
Mezentian
posted by Mezentian at 8:47 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Not everybody keeps their genitals in the same place.

Wait, no, wrong franchise.
posted by dumbland at 8:50 PM on November 24, 2013 [3 favorites]


a wizard did it.
posted by The Whelk at 8:50 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I nominate Mezantian to be the Glorious Leader of the Pedants who will stage a sit-in on Moffatt's head until he resolves the "12 Regenerations" problem...
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:55 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


I accept your nomination, and I will not rest until Lance Parkin's The Gallifrey Chronicles is also recognised in canon as well.
posted by Mezentian at 9:05 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Mezentian, now I really want to write bewildering letters to my representatives in that sci-fi-nerd continuity-pedant style.

Dear Sir,

This is a travesty! You clearly stated in Face the Nation, Season 58, Episode 3 that you were against federal funding for pet projects and yet just today on C-SPAN you were arguing that projects in your district should receive an increase in such funds. Needless to say, this sloppy regard to continuity and careless handling of your character's consistency breaks all suspension of disbelief, and I will not have it, sir. Enclosed you will find my official fan club membership card and commemorative convention pin. Until such time as the character of The Senator regenerates into an incarnation more in keeping with the classic Senators we all know and love, you may consider this my resignation from said club.

Fedora-ly yours,
Jason Steakums
posted by jason_steakums at 9:08 PM on November 24, 2013 [2 favorites]


(waits expectantly for the quidnunc kid to chime in)
posted by JHarris at 9:43 PM on November 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


My nine-year was jumping up and down and Doctor number 4 appeared, and I cried. And yesterday he said, "There'll be another celebration in fifty years." I said yes, but I probably wouldn't be around, to which he replied, "It's okay Mummy, I'll take the iPad to the cemetery!"
posted by bwonder2 at 12:37 AM on November 25, 2013 [22 favorites]


Great. Now I have just calculated that 2063 is likely to be after my death.

Hopefully a new messiah will arise in the decades since and cancel it.
Cyber Michael Grade will have his revenge.
posted by Mezentian at 12:48 AM on November 25, 2013


Also I really hope the 'Sciencey' character shows up in the next season, she was ace.

No, Ace has a jacket with her name on it, a baseball bat and a backpack full of explosives.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 2:13 AM on November 25, 2013 [7 favorites]


Also, when the Master is offered a new regeneration cycle, his reaction isn't "but that goes against every part of Time Lord biology, how is it even possible?" - it plays more like they're willing to authorise all the paperwork for him or something, which they weren't before. So it's fair to read it as an artificially imposed limit by the Time Lords, or at least something they can get round easily enough.

Also also, in The Brain Of Morbius we see several pre-Hartnell faces for the Doctor, which would already put him past 13 regenerations. (And would make the last one Peter Davison, who when he's regenerating says something to the effect of "it feels different this time, I don't know if it's going to work", followed by being considerably messed up for a while when he does regenerate successfully.)

To be fair the idea of pre-Hartnell regenerations has been contradicted elsewhere, but the series would be so much less fun if it started paying strict attention to canon continuity now and imploded under the strain. "But we can't use the Daleks, we've already told totally contradictory stories about where they come from! Toclafane it is, then..."
posted by Catseye at 2:15 AM on November 25, 2013


Also also, in The Brain Of Morbius we see several pre-Hartnell faces for the Doctor, which would already put him past 13 regenerations.

The other faces are supposed to be Morbius' past regens I thought, but it's been ages since I've seen that one.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 3:10 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


I watched it the other day. It's not entirely clear what's going on apart from FACE WARS. Which the Doctor only wins on a technicality. Say what you like about Morbius, he gives good face.
posted by Grangousier at 3:16 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


Dumbland, I was all aboard the Clara-is-Osgood's-sister train until I remembered that Clara is Oswin Oswald not -good, but then I remembered that Clara has been variously named throughout history (Miss Montague in that stupid episode with the ice nanny, for example) so it's not impossible that a version of Clara is Osgood's pretty sister.
posted by coppermoss at 4:41 AM on November 25, 2013


I was at a conference of museum technology nerds much of last week. If this episode had come out any earlier, EVERY PRESENTATION would have used the Curator scene.
posted by nonane at 5:29 AM on November 25, 2013 [5 favorites]


Also I really hope the 'Sciencey' character shows up in the next season, she was ace.

No, Ace has a jacket with her name on it, a baseball bat and a backpack full of explosives.


Ace was sciencey too. Oh my god, Osgood was Ace's daughter because why not.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 5:34 AM on November 25, 2013 [6 favorites]


There has to be another way out of The Knitting War, something that doesn't end in genocide.

You think a crocheter can fix things? Those hooks aren't sonic, Whelk.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 5:50 AM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


The regeneration limit seems like a pretty easy rule to break. Remember in old Who that there were several plotlines where the Master had run out of regenerations and was trying to do something evil to get more lives (not to mention the plotline where the time lords just offered him more lives). And I think in Brain of Morbius the Doctor mentioned something to the effect of that the Time Lords could've extended their lifespan using the Karn elixir but chose not to for ethical reasons. So although it's been portrayed as difficult and unnatural to have more than 13 lives, it's not impossible. There are plenty of loopholes big enough to drive a truck through.

On thinking about it, the lack of time travel stuff in the fall of Gallifrey scenes is understandable too. In old Who they mentioned Gallifrey has defenses to keep random people from Tardising in and out wherever they wanted. If the Daleks had TARDIS-type ships, those defenses would have to stay up to keep them from going everywhere. So neither side would be able to use anything but ordinary weapons. Which, one can fanwank, would also explain why the Tardis went through a wall and off planet rather than just dematerializing; the Doctor couldn't dematerialize till he was off of Gallifrey.
posted by unreason at 6:05 AM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


For those of us in the US that missed the episode, can it be watched online anywhere? I tried the BBC1 link and it says it only works for those in the UK.
posted by dukes909 at 6:10 AM on November 25, 2013


For those of us in the US that missed the episode, can it be watched online anywhere?

I bought it from Amazon for $1.99. I have not found a legal free streaming anywhere.
posted by anastasiav at 6:51 AM on November 25, 2013


(And, on another note, all of this stuff about Gallifrey being hidden -- well, Lawrence Miles' idea for a reboot was to store the Earth in a book. Close enough that he's probably hurling invective at the TV now.

He's been pissed off at the show since 2005 so I doubt much will change.
posted by Artw at 6:55 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't think the episode is streaming free anywhere.

There is an encore showing of the episode in movie theaters tonight though:

Fathom Events - Doctor Who - The Day of the Doctor

There are two showtimes (at least in my area), but some theaters may already be sold out.
posted by ZeusHumms at 6:55 AM on November 25, 2013


it's not impossible that a version of Clara is Osgood's pretty sister

Except they were face to face at several points and it seemed like it would have come up at any of those points.

Frankly, I was expecting Osgood at first to turn out to be another Clara, given how much they seemed to be trying to hide her appearance (hair back, glasses, etc.)

My husband thinks The Curator is basically Four Two (like Ten Two) - a part of Four that somehow spun off and was left on Earth, entirely human, to live out the remainder of his (its) life.
posted by anastasiav at 6:55 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm still sticking to the "regeneration limit was a Time Lord imposed rule" which makes the idea that some >13th Doctor is the one who finds Gallifrey and then the remaining Time Lords decide their savior is an abomination who must be stopped pretty much the only way I want to see it play out now.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 6:56 AM on November 25, 2013


And generally, loved the Day of the Doctor, but got to wondering if the role of the War Doctor was originally going to be for Nine instead. Or Eight. Alas, that would be a different story though. Combined with all the other things happening in and around the anniversary, I was pleased.
posted by ZeusHumms at 6:56 AM on November 25, 2013


And there's no reason for the Doctor to be any happier if he comes across any other Time Lords or Gallifrey itself. For all we know, Gallifrey could have emerged from its time lock, said to heck with all this, and went into hiding as the Earth.
posted by ZeusHumms at 7:00 AM on November 25, 2013


Ace was sciencey too. Oh my god, Osgood was Ace's daughter because why not.

Because Ace was a... OMG,
The continuity of spin-offs kills me.
posted by Mezentian at 7:03 AM on November 25, 2013


If the Time Lords put Gallifrey into hiding as the Earth in the past, which hey why not, what they did in the first bit of Trial of a Time Lord is pretty hilarious.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:03 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


To be fair, it wouldn't be the first time that Trial of a Time Lord was hilarious.
(The last time was the ending, but we ignore The Ultimate Foe, right?)
posted by Mezentian at 7:05 AM on November 25, 2013


(Yes.. I mean I like the idea that the High Council was corrupt and that the Valeyard was a possible future Doctor, but I pretend we found out in a Robert Holmes penned script rather than what we got. What I'm admitting to is that I even fanwank reality.)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:08 AM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


For those of us in the US that missed the episode, can it be watched online anywhere? I tried the BBC1 link and it says it only works for those in the UK.

Install MediaHint for either Chrome or Firefox.
posted by juiceCake at 7:29 AM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]




I saw on Doctor Who TV that Moffat somewhat addressed the Doctor numbering and regeneration limit at the fan event in London this weekend. DWTV also linked to a spoilery article in the not necessarily reliable Daily Mirror that the issue would come to the fore in the Christmas special. The DWTV site is wonky at the moment so I can't link to either report.
posted by plastic_animals at 8:12 AM on November 25, 2013


"I guess we'll never know. So, just to restate, that is something we'll never know, you're not going to find out later."
posted by Artw at 8:56 AM on November 25, 2013


From Torontoist: a retrospective of how TVOntario broadcast Doctor Who in the 70s and 80s. It includes a wonderful example of one of Judith Merril's "Un-Doctor" segments. You can find several more segments here.

I love this: Revenge of the Cybermen, Part 3.
posted by maudlin at 10:05 AM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


Probably a dumb question, but here goes: In previous multi-doctor stories, weren't they always in the same TARDIS? How do they have three different ones this time?
posted by jbickers at 10:05 AM on November 25, 2013


I must say, the idea of a UNIT spin-off is growing on me. It's doable, too - The Madame Vastra Adventures was a lovely idea, but with all that makeup and the period setting, it would be a bit expensive. But they could do UNIT quite inexpensively - it's modern day and all stock props.

Wait, if Silurians live for up to 300 years, do we know if Vastra is still alive in the modern day? If she is, she could join UNIT.
posted by homunculus at 11:05 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


ZeusHumms:
And generally, loved the Day of the Doctor, but got to wondering if the role of the War Doctor was originally going to be for Nine instead.
My understanding was that John Hurt was always going to be the War Doctor but his role in the special would have been smaller. When Christopher Eccleston dropped out his lines were given to John Hurt. Apparently you can kind of tell whose dialogue should have been whose if you listen. I've only had one watch and didn't pay attention to that, though.
posted by charred husk at 11:08 AM on November 25, 2013


Another question: What does this new focus on UNIT mean for Big Finish? Up until now, as I've understood it, BF has rights for Doctors 1-8, BBC has 9 and up. But BF has done some UNIT serials ... will they be prohibited from doing more, if UNIT becomes a focus of the main show?

(I really hope not, since BF's stories are so consistently good.)
posted by jbickers at 11:09 AM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wait, if Silurians live for up to 300 years, do we know if Vastra is still alive in the modern day? If she is, she could join UNIT.

"I will serve with you but seethe because your dad murdered my people" feels like a often-done character trope, but heck if I wouldn't be up for it.

(I'm thinking three Doctor WhoMetafilter threads in my Recent Activity might actually prompt me to start writing AU Doctor Who fic for the first time in like 25 years with all the interesting ideas people keep coming up with.)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:29 AM on November 25, 2013


I think the Curator is a future incarnation of the Doctor, since Matt Smith's character - at that point - is looking down the barrel of heading off to Trenzalore to face his destiny. If the episode was about giving the character hope by changing his past, this scene is about giving him some hope for the future - by ironically using a past face. Maybe the Curator is the final incarnation of the Doctor, or maybe he's a long-lived regeneration who will one day regenerate himself.

I love the idea that we not only got "all thirteen" Doctors of the past/present/immediate future, but also gave us a far future Doctor. Fitting for the fiftieth anniversary.
posted by crossoverman at 12:01 PM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm thinking three Doctor WhoMetafilter threads in my Recent Activity might actually prompt me to start writing AU Doctor Who fic for the first time in like 25 years with all the interesting ideas people keep coming up with.

I humbly ask to be included as a character who dies a ghastly, humiliating death.
posted by The Whelk at 12:14 PM on November 25, 2013


Consider the source (The Mirror) but apparently the big deal in the upcoming Christmas special is Matt Smith revealing that he believes/knows he's the Last Incarnation of the Doctor, and the whole "limited regenerations" issue being resolved when Doctor Capaldi makes his entrance (but that may remain as a 'cliffhanger' until his first new episode, scheduled for AUGUST).

Yes, Moffatt isn't finished with the reboot/retcon/regen/re-FACEPALM business.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:14 PM on November 25, 2013


I watched for Tennant and Baker, and left satisfied. That's a big 10-4!

And that thing Tennant's father-in-law did was raggedly charming. Somebody give Davison a comedy to showrun on BBC2! I'm sure PBS'll co-sign on productions costs.

If they do another one of these multi-Doctor episodes, a Capaldi-McGann-Tennant episode would be awesome. I'd like to see Tennant act with those who have real chops. No offense to Chins, but, eh, he's just too goofy and this show needs a bit more gravitas, I think. "Sandshoes and Chins" could be a Comic Relief episode next year.


::sits, waits for the Queen's phone call re the visa to move to the UK and become BBC Director General::
posted by droplet at 12:19 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's not Smith's goofiness that led him to portray the Doctor that way. The goofiness comes from his character being "the one who forgets." The childish behavior is the Doctor's way of dealing with being in denial for several centuries, trying to forget his act of double genocide.
posted by plastic_animals at 12:47 PM on November 25, 2013


It's not Smith's goofiness that led him to portray the Doctor that way. The goofiness comes from his character being "the one who forgets." The childish behavior is the Doctor's way of dealing with being in denial for several centuries, trying to forget his act of double genocide.

Yeah, and I've always thought it's one of Smith's best characteristics that he can go from goofy to ancient, so I've never seen why people think Smith lacks gravitas. I remember when Smith was first cast, I was one of the people thinking, "well, he's very young to be the Doctor," but I think Smith truly is excellent at conveying the Doctor's age. I've found him to be genuinely unsettling in moments like his speech about not being a good man in "A Good Man Goes to War."
posted by yasaman at 12:54 PM on November 25, 2013 [5 favorites]


Yeah there are these wonderful little moments where Smith makes it seem like the doctor isn't quite buying what he's saying but he's trying so hard to sell it. It's a lovely bit a characterization.
posted by The Whelk at 12:56 PM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm thinking three Doctor WhoMetafilter threads in my Recent Activity might actually prompt me to start writing AU Doctor Who fic for the first time in like 25 years with all the interesting ideas people keep coming up with.

I humbly ask to be included as a character who has access to the Pathweb and confuses the Daleks by posting links to bewildering memes from across the universe.
posted by homunculus at 1:17 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


WHAT IS DOGE EXPLAIN! EXPLAIN!
posted by The Whelk at 1:22 PM on November 25, 2013 [12 favorites]


"If the episode was about giving the character hope by changing his past, this scene is about giving him some hope for the future - by ironically using a past face. Maybe the Curator is the final incarnation of the Doctor, or maybe he's a long-lived regeneration who will one day regenerate himself."

In my head the Tom Baker character is a Doctor who has just accomplished something tremendous (like helping the Milky Way survive its collision with the Andromeda Galaxy), and has now settled down to a quiet century or two as a museum curator in a time that's already well protected by younger versions of himself. But he remembers how important this particular moment was, so he can't resist stopping by to give himself a few words of encouragement.
posted by Kevin Street at 1:26 PM on November 25, 2013 [8 favorites]


Maybe the Tom Baker character is just a psychic shedding of the skin that the Fourth Doctor regenerated into in Logopolis -- like the post-regeneration version of the Watcher -- that has been puttering around Earth since the early eighties.

Speaking of, as he regenerated he said "It's the end... but the moment has been prepared for" but maybe he meant "The Moment has been prepared for" and wow, with 50 years to play with, you can just come up with anything, can't you?
posted by MCMikeNamara at 1:45 PM on November 25, 2013 [6 favorites]


Ooh what if the regeneration limit is like a mind capacity thing - he only has space in his head for a certain number of past lives - and the giant TARDIS at Trenzalore isn't his grave, it's a backup of his first 13 lives. He wipes them from his mind to make more space, but he can stream memories from the backup via his telepathic link to his TARDIS, which has a link to Trenzalore. So Capaldi has another set of regenerations ahead of him, and everything's fine and dandy unless his link to the TARDIS or the TARDIS' link to Trenzalore is ever severed, which makes him lose the ability to access "new" past memories that he hasn't accessed yet. Basically his own history is now in cloud storage seamlessly wired right into his brain, but dropping out of wifi range is very very bad because he loses one of his biggest advantages.
posted by jason_steakums at 2:15 PM on November 25, 2013 [4 favorites]


The Great Intelligence and Clara going into the timestream/backup at Trenzalore and mucking with the past doesn't even throw a wrench into the idea, if the Trenzalore backup is connected to the Time Vortex in the TARDIS which updates in real "time" any revisions to his history because it's timeless and always right there with him. They just went backwards through the connection is all, popped out of the psychic link on the other end in the past and manifested there.
posted by jason_steakums at 2:28 PM on November 25, 2013


WHAT IS DOGE EXPLAIN! EXPLAIN!

omg bbc
much timey
such wimey
so tardis
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:05 PM on November 25, 2013 [9 favorites]


I don't understand that last post, jason_steakums. But it sounds beautiful.
posted by Kevin Street at 3:06 PM on November 25, 2013


He wipes them from his mind to make more space, but he can stream memories from the backup via his telepathic link to his TARDIS, which has a link to Trenzalore.

So basically the backup is a giant pensieve and he pulls memories out and uses them as needed.
posted by immlass at 3:08 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


Man that word is dangerous if you're even a little bit dyslexic.
posted by The Whelk at 3:25 PM on November 25, 2013


maudlin: From Torontoist: a retrospective of how TVOntario broadcast Doctor Who in the 70s and 80s.

Oh man. This was my intro to Dr Who, though instead of watching on tv, I would take off early from school (grade 7/8 in the early 80s) with a friend to go to the TVOntario building at Young and Englinton. In the basement they had viewing rooms and you could ask to watch any of the shows they had stored down there. We'd watch a whole storyline in a single afternoon, then go back to watch another one the next week.
posted by Sing Fool Sing at 4:06 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


"The 12 regenerations limit is a central part of Doctor Who mythology - science fiction is all about rules, you can't just casually break them."
- Moffat TROLLING SO HARD via Daily Mirror
posted by juv3nal at 4:15 PM on November 25, 2013 [7 favorites]


At Christmas, get ready for... The Time of the Doctor.
posted by crossoverman at 4:15 PM on November 25, 2013


Okay, if Osgoopvin (whatever) needed to use her inhaler that much, her asthma is not at all well regulated medically and I am sad for her and her doctor is letting her down, I mean really, people, you should not be using the damn thing every time you have an emotion, go get allergy shots or a steroid inhaler or something, poorly controlled asthma is not cute or a joking matter. Seek medical help Osgoofwin!!!!!!
posted by Squeak Attack at 4:29 PM on November 25, 2013 [8 favorites]


I've never doubted for a moment that I wasn't a NERD, but I realized today that the thing that cements it is that I can name all the actors who played Doctor Who on the show. (And the movies. I'm not yet up on Fatal Death.)
posted by JHarris at 4:33 PM on November 25, 2013


Basically his own history is now in cloud storage seamlessly wired right into his brain,

Better hope Google doesn't capriciously decide to end that service. (Why yes I can hold a grudge, why do you ask?)
posted by JHarris at 4:36 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


confuses the Daleks by posting links to bewildering memes from across the universe.

All Daleks are grumpy Dalek.
posted by arcticseal at 4:42 PM on November 25, 2013 [4 favorites]


Man. That Cyberhead just keeps turning up everywhere. It was in the Black Archives, wasn't it?
posted by Mezentian at 4:51 PM on November 25, 2013


Also, can we speculate this is Susan? Just for funs?
posted by Mezentian at 4:52 PM on November 25, 2013


Moffat TROLLING SO HARD

Moffat is constantly trolling, why do any of us even listen to anything he says before any of his finales? Also, stop screwing up the numbering Moffat, now we are in for decades of arguing about the "correct" numbering of the Doctors.
posted by yasaman at 4:54 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


Fortunately, this Star-Trek-themed web thingy can be used for just such an occasion:

MOFFAT!!!
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:59 PM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


It's too bad the split-off of #10's half-human copy counted as one of the Regenerations; otherwise I could argue about The Curator that #4 had split off a doppelganger himself back in the '70s, who has been living and aging as a happy human ever since... which would also allow the other still-alive-but-older ex-Doctors to show up in future episodes. Still, whatever Moffat has planned to eliminate the Regeneration Limit will probably explain the familiar face... unless it doesn't. MOFFAT!!!
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:05 PM on November 25, 2013


Capaldi cameo in the Time of the Doctor promo image. (via)
posted by crossoverman at 5:21 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


Boo cyber men boo


Sorry I just ...hate those guys they bore me.
posted by The Whelk at 5:23 PM on November 25, 2013


It's okay. All the deadliest races of the universe are coming together for Pandorica II.
(Or, I wonder, if this is the reason they decided to built it?)
posted by Mezentian at 5:25 PM on November 25, 2013


Like Beyonce, they just want to upgrade you


is that so bad
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:27 PM on November 25, 2013


Wow, so my comment above just revealed to me that I was very angry about the "ugly" asthmatic nerd girl. Note to Moffat and all producers of TV from here on out - 1) asthma is not a cute nerd fashion accessory, 2) poorly treated or regulated asthma can fucking kill you and 3) asthma is not some kind of nerd-only disease. All sorts of people can have asthma.

Fucking Moffat.
posted by Squeak Attack at 5:28 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


I also find the Cybermen boring, but look at that Cyberman head! He looks sort of friendly and abashed? Like he's smiling and saying, "Hey, it's me again. I know, I know, I've kind of overstayed my welcome, but how about one more go, eh?" Maybe he'll be a friendly Cyberman.
posted by yasaman at 5:35 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


I also find the Cybermen boring, but look at that Cyberman head! He looks sort of friendly and abashed? Like he's smiling and saying, "Hey, it's me again. I know, I know, I've kind of overstayed my welcome, but how about one more go, eh?" Maybe he'll be a friendly Cyberman.

He's so totally doing the DreamWorks Face, he's even got a little light-up eyebrow!
posted by jason_steakums at 5:37 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


But from what Bleeding Cool are told, Marco Polo and the Massacre Of St Bartholomew’s Eve, both starring William Hartnell, are nearly ready to go.
The rest are in negotiations regarding restoration with the revived-TIEA director Philip Morris. There are expectations for Power Of The Daleks and the Macra Terror to follow… though some also believe there’s an Evil Of The Daleks to come as well.


Goddamnit.

Elsewhere, there are these rumours for Time of the Doctor, which are encouraging and seem to tie the Smith era in a bow.

And, apparently the next series is fourteen episodes, split across two years: Seven episodes, including a Christmas Special in 2014, including that two parter Dalek story. First episode on April 19th. And similarly, seven episodes, including a Christmas Special in 2015.

*sigh*
posted by Mezentian at 5:40 PM on November 25, 2013


I gotta say, it's time to retire the Daleks and the Cybermen for a season (or even half a season) or two. As much as I love these classic Dr. Who badmen, I find the writers keep coming back to them almost as a crutch to keep the series going.

These are old enemies with nothing more interesting to offer me after so many dozens (and dozens) of episodes devoted to them. I still can't believe that the Daleks could even come close to equaling Time Lords in their manipulation of time and space.
posted by docjohn at 5:57 PM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


No, what we need is the new Dalek Paradigm to come back!
posted by Mezentian at 6:01 PM on November 25, 2013


Is it still the case (or was it ever the case, or just rumor?) that they have to use the Daleks every season as part of the contract with Terry Nation's estate?
posted by jason_steakums at 6:10 PM on November 25, 2013


I gotta say, it's time to retire the Daleks and the Cybermen

Agreed. Enough already.
posted by homunculus at 6:11 PM on November 25, 2013


/fast forwards two years

OH GOD NOT MORE ZYGONS AND AUTONS!
posted by Artw at 6:21 PM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


They should bring back the fag smoking Cyberman from Adventures In Space and Time.

(also Classic Daleks, Zarbi)
posted by Artw at 6:23 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


Daleks... you realize that every time a new bunch of Daleks show up to face the singular last of the Time Lords, that they are in a position to boast "We won the Time War, relatively."
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:23 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think the Dalek use requirement thing is just a rumour, but then they did turn up in the year of "specials", so who knows.

(I actually back ArtW's plan for a return of the oldest Cybermen. The look is amazing, and they could properly retell Spare Parts, or build on it).
posted by Mezentian at 6:24 PM on November 25, 2013 [3 favorites]


Disapointingly it turns out that's what the first Cyberman two-parter of the new series was...

And they need the cigs. Their evil scheme could be forcing someone to pop down the offy and get a pack of 20 Rothman.
posted by Artw at 6:26 PM on November 25, 2013


(and if I've not said it enough my god did I love Adventures in Space and Time - if for some reason you didn't catch it you really need to correct that at your soonest convenience.)
posted by Artw at 6:28 PM on November 25, 2013


Disapointingly it turns out that's what the first Cyberman two-parter of the new series was...

I know. But it lacks, well, anything good from Spare Parts. There's a body horror story to be told in there.
posted by Mezentian at 6:29 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


"I still can't believe that the Daleks could even come close to equaling Time Lords in their manipulation of time and space."

Their super power is determination, and they all want the same thing. (To Exterminate.) They're not big on creativity, but given enough time they can trial-and-error themselves up to high levels of technology.
posted by Kevin Street at 6:36 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


Plus, they also had the reality bomb.
posted by Mezentian at 6:42 PM on November 25, 2013


They're not big on creativity, but given enough time they can trial-and-error themselves up to high levels of technology.

I'd love to see random bits of Dalek protruding from walls and ceilings, disembodied Dalek time-ghosts, and infinitely-looping Daleks just scattered about unremarked-upon in random adventures from their trial-and-error approach to figuring out time travel.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:43 PM on November 25, 2013 [6 favorites]


Big Finish did it!
posted by Mezentian at 6:45 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


And that thing Tennant's father-in-law did was raggedly charming.

You know, lemme just step back a bit and marvel yet again that this skinny little Glaswegian kid who grew up playing DOCTOR WHO in the schoolyard and actually had all the action figures and stuff was lucky enough to not only be The Doctor for real, but then he got to team up with Sarah Jane Smith herself at one point, and one of his favorite Doctors, and then went on to marry that Doctor's daughter and so now he goes for visits on the weekends and shit. And then he gets to come back and revisit the role after 4 years away.

Mr. Tennant, you are quite possibly the luckiest man alive and I salute you.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:54 PM on November 25, 2013 [21 favorites]


WHAT IS DOGE EXPLAIN! EXPLAIN!

wow
much Dalek
very exterminate
so Skaro
wow
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 7:11 PM on November 25, 2013 [7 favorites]


Zarbi

Ooh, in the original costumes! Big fiberglass ants with two human legs sticking out the bottom, yes please! And the Menoptera too, people talking funny in felt bee suits!

God, the Web Planet was weird. I keep meaning to make a YouTube supercut of the scenes of the Menoptera and Zarbi battle on that weird alien planet set, with extra-human-looking Barbera romping around with them, presiding over it all like the teacher from Romper Room. Really, I've made two attempts at making the video so far, but I keep getting distracted.
posted by JHarris at 7:12 PM on November 25, 2013


DOGELEK
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:12 PM on November 25, 2013 [4 favorites]


That could be as simple as a real dog in a Dalek movement machine.
posted by JHarris at 7:14 PM on November 25, 2013


So I watched "Day of the Doctor" at home on Saturday in part because I knew if there were any emotional bits that worked on me, I'd rather be bawling on my couch at home in private. But tonight I went to see it to check out the 3D (much better than expected) and sure enough damn Tom Baker shows up and I'm already wiping tears behind my glasses.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:03 PM on November 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's okay to cry in public, MCMike... although I'm still not sure the two little old ladies sitting on either side of me when I went to see the Les Miz movie have quite yet recovered from the giant-bearded, leather-wearing stranger hippie bear sitting next to them who basically sobbed uncontrollably for 3 hours...
posted by hippybear at 8:46 PM on November 25, 2013 [5 favorites]


DUSTY ROOMS.
posted by Artw at 8:47 PM on November 25, 2013


Watched the encore showing tonight in the US. It was a treat to watch and hear others see it for the first time.
posted by ZeusHumms at 8:52 PM on November 25, 2013


Just before the closure of BBC Television Centre in Spring 2013, Google took its Street View cameras around most of the studios and production areas which had been home to BBC Television since 1960. Whilst the images were being captured, the filming of the Doctor Who docudrama An Adventure in Space and Time was taking place. Take a virtual tour behind the scenes at some of the sets used in the docudrama, and see the rest of Television Centre before it makes the final transition to a modern studio centre, hotel, apartments and commercial headquarters of the BBC.
posted by Mezentian at 10:22 PM on November 25, 2013 [2 favorites]


Related: Doctor Who: 50 Years of Main Title Design - all opening titles throughout the ages.
posted by KMB at 2:53 AM on November 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Thanks for the link KMB! Sorry your FPP of it got deleted, but in the mods' defense, it was the fourth concurrent Doctor Who thread.
posted by JHarris at 3:32 AM on November 26, 2013


> "I've never doubted for a moment that I wasn't a NERD, but I realized today that the thing that cements it is that I can name all the actors who played Doctor Who on the show."

As everyone knows, the REAL thirteen Doctors are Richard Hurndall, Adrian Gibbs, Michael Jayston, Geoffrey Hughes, Brian Proudfoot, Edmund Warwick, Albert Ward, Gordon Craig, Chris Jeffries, Tommy Laird, John Guilor, Daniel Anthony, and Toby Jones.

Who are your favorites? I vote for Michael Jayston for Classic Who and Daniel Anthony for New Who!
posted by kyrademon at 5:16 AM on November 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


As everyone knows, the REAL thirteen Doctors are

Get ready to throw down.
posted by Mezentian at 5:26 AM on November 26, 2013


> "Get ready to throw down."

Oh, come on. Everyone knows Peter Cushing doesn't really count. And as great as some of the Big Finish stuff is, no one considers John Culshaw or William Russell and the rest of them to be "canon" Doctors. And if you think, say, Mark Gatiss or the Curse of Fatal Death people qualify, then that's just silly.

So who else IS there?
posted by kyrademon at 5:39 AM on November 26, 2013


(Or did you just mean you prefer Toby Jones' Doctor to Daniel Anthony's Doctor? Because that, I guess I could understand.)
posted by kyrademon at 6:15 AM on November 26, 2013


I saw it on the silver screen last night, finally! John Hurt was amazing. Tennant coming back was great. Billie Piper was well used, and thank God she wasn't actually playing Rose. The story was fun, as long as you don't think about The End of Time during the climax (which was not easy at times, but I managed). TOM EFFING BAKER, with a perfect scene to cap it off. All that, I loved.

(Also, Strax's warnings about etiquette were a riot. Remember, popcorn can feel pain.)

I still haven't watched The Five(ish) Doctors, which looks like the best thing in human history.

The 3D, though. Eeeeeeuuuuuugh. I had to keep convincing myself not to walk out of the theater and go download a 2D version. Murky and disorienting and occasionally nauseating and it added nothing. Is every modern 3D movie like that? I think I preferred red and blue plastic.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 7:45 AM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


There's perhaps half a dozen modern movies that have used 3D well? Mostly it makes them worse. TBH I can't see it working out on a TV budget.
posted by Artw at 7:49 AM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Has anyone put Strax's etiquette guide online anywhere yet?
posted by ocherdraco at 8:00 AM on November 26, 2013


Artw: TBH I can't see it working out on a TV budget.

My understanding is that it already hasn't worked out. The Day of the Doctor is the last thing the BBC is going to broadcast in 3D, as the market for it is not there.

I did think the 3D worked relatively well. It wasn't Gravity, but I still thought it added something to the experience. Especially the scene where Clara rode her motorbike directly into the TARDIS -- it really cemented the "bigger on the inside" feeling for me in a way the 2D TV series has never been able to.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:04 AM on November 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh, thank goodness someone else didn't see the point of 3-D. I saw it in 3-D in a theater on Saturday and in 2-D at home on Sunday and, well, I hope 3-D filming isn't all that more expensive because it added almost nothing to the movie. It added a cool depth to the paintings but that was the only benefit that I noticed.
posted by plastic_animals at 8:09 AM on November 26, 2013


Also, wait until we get 12-D. That's really something.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:12 AM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'd actually forgotten the 3D when I was watching it - the paintings make a lot of sense given that.
posted by Artw at 8:13 AM on November 26, 2013


There are a lot of camera choices that make a lot more sense when you remember the 3D. In fact, I bet now that I've seen both I won't be able to unsee those choices it if I watch it again -- though I forgot about it when I was watching it the first time as well.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:18 AM on November 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Other 3D bits I liked, even if they didn't really add anything:
  • Clara writing on the transparent white board
  • The titles floating over the video
  • The paintings
  • The viewscreen graphics when the three doctors were communicating with Gallifrey
  • The helicopter delivering the TARDIS
  • The shrapnel when the War Doctor was writing "NO MORE" on the wall
  • Some of the staging -- having characters standing behind/in front of other characters
Like MCMikeNamara says, some of those moments didn't really make sense in the 2D version and I had a "Oh, that's what they were going for" moment in the theater.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:26 AM on November 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Has anyone put Strax's etiquette guide online anywhere yet?

No, but as soon as I find it I'll post it everywhere because it's just great. Same with Smith and Tennant welcoming you to the 3D presentation.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 8:41 AM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I've never doubted for a moment that I wasn't a NERD, but I realized today that the thing that cements it is that I can name all the actors who played Doctor Who on the show.

Well you can't be THAT big of a nerd if you refer to the character as 'Doctor Who' [/pedant]
posted by showbiz_liz at 9:28 AM on November 26, 2013


showbiz_liz: "I've never doubted for a moment that I wasn't a NERD, but I realized today that the thing that cements it is that I can name all the actors who played Doctor Who on the show.

Well you can't be THAT big of a nerd if you refer to the character as 'Doctor Who' [/pedant]
"

You mean the way he was credited up through, what, the Pertwee era at least?
posted by bettafish at 9:31 AM on November 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


It's not his NAME though! Any more than the extras in movies are really supposed to be named Bystander #3.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:09 AM on November 26, 2013


Look, if you want to argue with Tom Baker's nose pun, that's up to you.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 10:12 AM on November 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


I mean listen, I'm not gonna stand here and tell you I DIDN'T laugh for five minutes straight when that disembodied head was all like "when the question is asked. What question? Oh, just DOCTOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOR WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO?"

But it's not his name. Grumble.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:16 AM on November 26, 2013


And that thing Tennant's father-in-law did was raggedly charming.

You know, lemme just step back a bit and marvel yet again that this skinny little Glaswegian kid who grew up playing DOCTOR WHO in the schoolyard and actually had all the action figures and stuff was lucky enough to not only be The Doctor for real, but then he got to team up with Sarah Jane Smith herself at one point, and one of his favorite Doctors, and then went on to marry that Doctor's daughter and so now he goes for visits on the weekends and shit. And then he gets to come back and revisit the role after 4 years away.

Mr. Tennant, you are quite possibly the luckiest man alive and I salute you.


Yo Dawg, I heard you like the Doctor's Daughter.
posted by leotrotsky at 10:54 AM on November 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


I am not a big fan of 3D, but I actually think the 3D used in Day of the Doctor was one of the better examples I can think of. And there was part of me that loved seeing the 50th anniversary of a TV show that started out in black & white and was now in 3D on the big screen.

I was expecting a cheesy use of the technology, but a lot of the scenes were really well composed for 3D without too many of the expected things like - pointing the sonic at the screen, which I think only happened in the Matt Smith pre-amble.

Of course, I did like that Moffat wrote with 3D in mind - with the paintings and all, but a lot of the other scenes looked great. The helicopter flying the TARDIS over the Thames looked a bit fake in 3D, though - but it was great in 2D on my TV.
posted by crossoverman at 12:11 PM on November 26, 2013


Fools, it's there in front of you: 3D = 3 Doctors!
posted by arcticseal at 5:08 PM on November 26, 2013




'Doctor Who' screening stuns at Monday box office, No. 2 after 'Catching Fire'.

Time for a feature film starring Peter Capaldi, David Tennant and Paul McGann, please.
posted by crossoverman at 6:03 PM on November 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


Time for a feature film starring Peter Capaldi, David Tennant and Paul McGann, please.

In another thread I offered Steve Moffat sexual favors in exchange for an 8th-Doctor/Agent Scully spinoff series. I am hereby expanding my offer to cover this suggestion as well.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:06 PM on November 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


A feature film might mean they can afford to get Carey Mulligan back as Sally Sparrow.
posted by crossoverman at 6:10 PM on November 26, 2013


This much money should allow the Beeb to survive at least two more years of Tory Government hate.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:19 PM on November 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Who gets the money though? BBC or BBC Worldwide?
It matters, doesn't it?
posted by Mezentian at 8:32 PM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I went to the Monday night showing and loved it. Felt a little bad about not springing for the 3-D after I saw the paintings (which were pretty 3-D even in 2-D!), so I'm glad to hear the 3-D wasn't all that and a bag of chips. We didn't get the Matt Smith bit before, but the Strax thing...not only do I want that online, I want it shown before every movie. The screams of the dying popcorn....

Ten and Eleven are my doctors, and they are adorable nerds together and I love them. With cranky 8.5 as a counterpart, it was my favorite episode ever.

Though yeah, did suffer from lack of 9, but what can you do. also had quibbles with Liz I being so lovesick she doesn't get mad at the Doctor for insulting her so much--but on the other hand, she did stab her double.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:03 PM on November 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


This much money should allow the Beeb to survive at least two more years of Tory Government hate.

Seen the BBC news lately... on the NHS sell off for instance? Seen any Boys From The Blackstuff social drama reflecting the current economic situation, mass youth un/under-employment....? They've already capitulated...
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:00 AM on November 27, 2013


OMIGOD YOU GUYS THERE'S A DOCTOR WHO MATCH-THREE GAME NOW.
posted by jbickers at 8:27 AM on November 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


jbickers: OMIGOD YOU GUYS THERE'S A DOCTOR WHO MATCH-THREE GAME NOW.

It's pretty fun! It's got a lot of RPG elements baked in. The tutorial is a big of a drag to get through (lots of clicking through dialog boxes a la old school Final Fantasy or something), but the game itself is neat.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:09 AM on November 27, 2013


There are some IAP, in case that is a dealbreaker for you, but it appears to be mostly purchasing outfits and new characters, not a Pay To Win situation.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:11 AM on November 27, 2013


On a tangentially 50th-related note, I started watching An Unearthly Child on Saturday and finished today. I've actually seen this serial before, but somehow I'd forgotten how metal the Doctor's granddaughter Susan is.

Seriously, if anyone ever tries to tell you that Susan Foreman was useless and boring, remind them that her first ever escape plan started with putting a literal human skull on top of a literal flaming torch and then beaming with delight. I AM NOT EVEN EXAGGERATING.
posted by bettafish at 4:13 PM on November 27, 2013 [5 favorites]


She can also wield a mean pair of scissors.
posted by JHarris at 7:52 PM on November 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


You now how the "No More" gun scene is kinda odd?
It just struck me (on my fourth rewatch, which is MAD CRAZY) that that scene is probably there because it is the longest single scene in which The (War) Doctor has used a firearm.

That Doctor is one pimp ass muthafucka is probably obligatory at this point.
posted by Mezentian at 8:38 PM on November 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Presumably the War Doctor would have been finding sneaky less direct ways to genocide baddies by the truckload, just like the regular doctor. Only not saying sorry so much, I guess.

I would say that the one major failing of the special was that we never got to see the War Doctor do any of that clever stuff or any real hint that the Time War involved it except the name itself.
posted by Artw at 9:10 PM on November 27, 2013




I love every still I see of The Five(ish) Doctors. Peter Davison may just have the best smile of anyone ever.
posted by kalimac at 3:10 AM on November 28, 2013


The Five(ish) Doctors is an astounding piece of work, really. A half-hour sequence of fandom in-jokes which I'm fairly certain would be hilarious even to someone with next to no knowledge of those jokes, on the power of comedic timing (both the director's and the actors') alone.
posted by bettafish at 5:35 AM on November 28, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think what The Five-ish Doctors proves is:
1. How good Big Finish is.
2. How much cameos are needed in the main series.
3. How much of a downer is Eccleston is, since, according to the awful after party (of which this is just part, and may or may not include the awful One Direction cross), he declined to take part in The Fish Doctor sketch.
posted by Mezentian at 5:45 AM on November 28, 2013


I gave up on the BBC3 show when it appears they were putting most of their resources into trying to contact Wand Erection somewhere on the other side of the world. What. The. Fuck?

The FIve-ish Doctors thing was excellent, though. I hope it's on the DVD. That ought to be quite a DVD, I must say.

(I suspect the reason it was on the Red Button rather than a proper channel is that it rides a coach-and-fours through union agreements. The number of non-professional actors alone is stunning and entirely appropriate.)

I do think something that was lacking in the coverage was coverage of the story of the books and of Big Finish, but I think that the BBC have no idea what they've got here, other than that it's been around a while and lots of people like it. Also, it struck me that there are probably enough interviews in the archive that they could have told the whole story of Doctor Who in the first person without any mediating links or narrator, but I suspect that that sort of thing is blasphemy in today's television.

The main thing that worries me is that when Moffat finally hangs up his showrunner hat it'll fall into the deadly grip of the BBC Commissioning Editors.
posted by Grangousier at 5:58 AM on November 28, 2013


I gave up on the BBC3 show when it appears they were putting most of their resources into trying to contact Wand Erection somewhere on the other side of the world. What. The. Fuck?


You Are Not Alone.
posted by Mezentian at 6:03 AM on November 28, 2013 [2 favorites]


I cannot believe I didn't think of 'let zygons be zygons' earlier
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:03 PM on November 28, 2013 [2 favorites]




Just saw DOTD. Great stuff. I love the pseudo-retcon. And Capaldi's eyes.

But...the 12th Doctor won't remember this day. Will 11 leave a note?
posted by Sticherbeast at 4:00 PM on November 29, 2013


Every Doctor Who fan should remember today's anniversary too. It has been 50 years since the broadcast of "The Cave of Skulls" so now we can all celebrate the first time somebody probably complained that Doctor Who isn't as good as it used to be.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:49 AM on November 30, 2013 [6 favorites]


It really wasn't... the caveman story is well wobbly.

And then... Daleks!
posted by Artw at 8:51 AM on November 30, 2013


The story was just wobbly in sympathy with the sets.
posted by arcticseal at 8:55 AM on November 30, 2013 [2 favorites]


We watched Terror of the Zygons at the Alamo Drafthouse here in Austin this afternoon. It's a regular thing they used to do monthly and then quarterly (even though they usually sold the place out) with Classic Who episodes, with permission from the BBC. Since the shows are out on DVD, they couldn't charge admission, but they'd reserve a seat for $5 and give you a $5 voucher for food and drink.

We were told that today's was the last showing because BBC America has withdrawn its permission to do any more. After the way people put butts in chairs for the 50th, I'm not surprised. I'm expecting to see more special occasion Who at the theaters. (E.g., maybe the next time they get a new "lost" story, they might show it as a special in movie theaters and then wait to release it to home video.)
posted by immlass at 2:29 PM on November 30, 2013 [1 favorite]


As promised. It's a shakycam recording, but the audio and video are both pretty clear.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 1:29 PM on December 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Doctor Burton
posted by homunculus at 12:01 PM on December 7, 2013


Remember: popcorn can feel pain!
posted by JHarris at 6:37 PM on December 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Time of The Doctor: further promotional images. Man, they really seem to be burying the Skittles Daleks.

Video excerpt released from Space And Time panel session at BFI
posted by Mezentian at 7:22 PM on December 7, 2013


I also feel compelled to point out that we've had a stone dalek, and now we have a wooden Cyberman.

I'd make a joke about them forming a band, but does anyone remember Things Of Stone and Wood?
posted by Mezentian at 7:27 PM on December 7, 2013 [1 favorite]




Hold on there guys, I know you're enthusiastic right now, but wait until we know more about it. What is better, there being a Gallifrey out there, or there being a Gallifrey we could conceivably live on?
posted by JHarris at 5:27 PM on December 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I like the skittles Daleks :(

I realize I am probably alone here but still.
posted by jason_steakums at 5:39 PM on December 9, 2013


Even MORE photos from the Time of the Doctor. I can't believe Matt Smith is gone in a couple of weeks.

Meanwhile, Moffat has confirmed that Capaldi's first series won't be split in half.
posted by crossoverman at 8:07 PM on December 10, 2013


Oh, thank goodness. Maybe it will be a reasonable number of episodes, too?
posted by ocherdraco at 8:27 PM on December 10, 2013


Thirteen episodes, but no word if that includes Xmas 2014 or not.
posted by crossoverman at 8:41 PM on December 10, 2013


Matt Smith's almost gone, the Ponds are gone, who knows if River will ever come back, and they never explained the scorch marks on Amy's lawn in The Pandorica Opens that totally seemed like they came from a time ship like 79B Aickman Road, did they? That one's been in the back of my mind since it aired. Also, I always expected River's diary just sitting in the library would have been a macguffin at some point.
posted by jason_steakums at 9:38 PM on December 10, 2013


I still don't know who blew up the TARDIS or why.
posted by crossoverman at 10:02 PM on December 10, 2013


Large images linked.
Local people for a local shop in a local village.
And, finally, a sequel to Fear Her.
posted by Mezentian at 8:21 AM on December 11, 2013


The Time of the Doctor trailer.
posted by plastic_animals at 9:11 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Clara's talking to Capaldi there, right?
posted by Mezentian at 2:09 PM on December 11, 2013


I am so jazzed to see the return of the Monoids. I have a soft spot for The Ark.

Not sure why the Daleks need a BFG on a tank either. Or how this Silent got into this painting.
posted by Mezentian at 5:19 PM on December 11, 2013


Not sure why the Daleks need a BFG on a tank either.

Perhaps it's an upgrade to the Special Weapons Dalek?
posted by charlie don't surf at 5:29 PM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's not clear who Clara is talking to. The drawings appear to be in the TARDIS and Clara is standing in front of them when she is pleading with whomever to help the Doctor.

Also, the placement of the drawings is not consistent in the preview photos. Continuity lapse or do they get moved around?
posted by plastic_animals at 5:40 PM on December 11, 2013


Remember when Peter Jackson said he wanted to direct an episode of Doctor Who? Well, he's now saying that the discussions about it are "actually kind of serious."

I am down with this.

Also, the placement of the drawings is not consistent in the preview photos. Continuity lapse or do they get moved around?

It's Fear Her Part 2. I keep saying this.
posted by Mezentian at 6:37 PM on December 11, 2013


Mezentian:
Remember when Peter Jackson said he wanted to direct an episode of Doctor Who? Well, he's now saying that the discussions about it are "actually kind of serious."
"Steven? Yes, I've written the episode. However it's a little long and we'll have to break it into six parts. We can do that, right? Like season six?"
posted by charred husk at 5:51 AM on December 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I would be very okay with Peter Jackson directing Doctor Who, so long as it's the same Peter Jackson who directed Braindead, Forgotten Silver, Heavenly Creatures, and The Frighteners, and not that skinny guy who directs those hobbit movies.

No, seriously, I'd be totally fine with this. If anything, the limitations of TV would be good for him.

Edgar Wright, Danny Boyle, Nicolas Roeg, and James Gunn would be great Doctor Who guest directors as well.
posted by Sticherbeast at 6:02 AM on December 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


From the pool of the deceased, John Frankenheimer and Joseph Losey would have been terrific guest directors as well.
posted by Sticherbeast at 6:04 AM on December 12, 2013


"Steven? Yes, I've written the episode. However it's a little long and we'll have to break it into six parts. We can do that, right? Like season six?"
The Key To Time II: Extended Edition
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 6:12 AM on December 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


BIG FINISH DID IT.
posted by Mezentian at 6:20 AM on December 12, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'd quite like a Peter Greenaway episode. Half the cast are naked, though not that half you'd like to be; Everybody is arranged in a symmetrical tableau, no one moves very much and the script is an abstruse meditation on the nature of art and mortality; In the foreground, the corpse of a Zygon rots slowly.

Music not by Michael Nyman, sadly.

So not that different from what we have at the moment, really, apart from the nakedness.

Actually, what I'd really like is a Guy Maddin episode.
posted by Grangousier at 6:38 AM on December 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


Actually, what I'd really like is a Guy Maddin episode.

The Doctor vs The Saddest Music in the Universe
The Doctor vs the Black Tuesdays


Yesss make this happen.
posted by jason_steakums at 7:33 AM on December 12, 2013


We've lost our chance for Vic Cowie as The Master That The Doctor Has Weird Father Issues With though.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:48 AM on December 12, 2013


BIG FINISH DID IT.

The two complaints of the Big Finish fan:
"That isn't enough like a Big Finish story"
"That's too much like a Big Finish story"

(substitute spin off books for Big Finish where required)
posted by Artw at 7:53 AM on December 12, 2013 [5 favorites]


Nicolas Roeg

The Man Who Fell To Gallifrey?
posted by The Whelk at 8:03 AM on December 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Man Who Fell To Gallifrey?

+1,000,000 favorites. I must have this. David Bowie as 14th Doctor. Additional episodes directed by Duncan Jones and The Ghost of Jim Henson. Please please please.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:51 AM on December 12, 2013


Rock Steady:
I must have this. David Bowie as 14th Doctor.
CLARA: Doctor! You've regenerated again!
[Looks down at his tight pants.]
CLARA: You seem to have gotten a two-for-one...
posted by charred husk at 12:45 PM on December 12, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm a leave this here.
posted by juv3nal at 9:22 PM on December 12, 2013




New Christmas trailer anyone?
posted by Mezentian at 4:14 PM on December 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


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