Fridge: Doctor Who 50th AS "The Day of the Doctor"
WARNING! THERE MAY BE UNMARKED SPOILERS!
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- The War Doctor's TARDIS:
- His control room is smaller in design compared to later versions. As the War Doctor, he wasn't accepting any companions.
- It also has the old-style walls with the "round things" BUT augmented with Nine's curved columns. Since the exterior of the TARDIS shows some battle damage, it's implied that the War Doctor started out with the traditional control room, but the TARDIS suffered enough damage in the Time War to need that kind of reinforcement (and only "healed" it when it got a full revamp in "The Eleventh Hour.")
- Its suggested that its the same control room as Nine and Ten's, but a hundred years newer. The console looks very similar; the main difference is it's shinier. Also, the walls in Nine's/Ten's TARDIS could just be what's behind the Round Things, like with suspended ceiling tiles.
- The size is also a Shout-Out to the classic series control rooms, which tended to be much smaller than the sprawling TVM and new series console rooms.
- The final scene with 'The Curator'. There's a lot of Leaning on the Fourth Wall mixed with a heady dose of Angel Unaware, but if one accepts that The Curator is a long long distant regeneration of the Doctor, then there's a lot more significance to the "Round Things" along the gallery walls next to the painting.
- The Tenth Doctor's final line:
- "I don't wanna go" makes sense even outside of a call back. In "The Day of the Doctor", it was in response to being told they'd go to Trenzalore, the location of their grave/death. In "The End of Time", it was in after comparing Regeneration to death. Why was that his final line in the special? So that " I don't wanna go" is still the last line we've heard him say in the show. There's no argument about what his last words are.
- Also, unlike most incarnations, Ten equated regeneration to death, and he said that line in response to hearing of his (final) death on Trenzalore. Ten knows he has one regeneration left, and considering that this adventure takes place during the 2009 specials (from Ten's point of view), it is entirely possible he thinks the 'He will knock four times' prophecy is referring to his fate on Trenzalore.
- The letter from Queen Elizabeth says that the Doctor pledged to defend "the safety of my kingdom". This explains why the Doctor keeps turning up in Britain in particular. He's not a very good husband, but he does keep his promise. Although at first glance it appears that he wouldn't remember any of this (including the marriage), he does remember marrying her, as he brings it up in "The End of Time". He regenerates shortly thereafter, so going back wouldn't have been an option regardless.
- The Ninth Doctor believed all sides had perished in the Time War, yet the Emperor Dalek (and others) survived the final battle, which shouldn't have been possible. Now we know how: his ship was damaged but not destroyed in the friendly crossfire after Gallifrey vanished, and wasn't burned by the Doctor because he didn't do it, something Nine couldn't possibly have known. Suddenly the Daleks' apparent Joker Immunity makes far more sense. We also see a single Dalek pod being flung into space by the sheer force of the explosion after the Dalek fleet destroys itself. It's possible that this pod contained one of these Daleks mentioned above, and that the others were similarly scattered survivors flung far apart from each other — hence how they kept showing up despite the fact that they should all have been dead. Moreover, the tactic of making a target vanish so that one's enemies catch each other in the crossfire, circular-firing-squad style, is exactly how the Weeping Angels were defeated in "Blink". Foreshadowing is everywhere for this one.
- Upon first meeting Ten and Eleven, the War Doctor mistakes them for companions. Now, what do companions do? They stop the Doctor from going too far. What do Ten and Eleven do in this episode? They stop the War Doctor from destroying Gallifrey.
- At the climax, Ten, Eleven, and the War Doctor summon all the previous incarnations of the Doctor to battle to help save Gallifrey. But how does The Twelfth Doctor know where to go, given he doesn't exist yet? Because he remembers these events from Eleven's perspective, and knew that he would be needed. And he's the only future Doctor to show up, because it just happened to have needed that many versions of him to complete the calculations, not a fourteenth or later one.
- The big red button that can destroy Gallifrey and the Daleks mirrors the exact the same dilemma faced by the 9th Doctor with using the Delta Wave to destroy the Dalek Emperor and burn the Earth during the events of "Bad Wolf". It also looks like a rose. Remind us of anyone?
- The War Doctor is basically a classic series Doctor / viewer transplanted into the new series and offering a commentary on it. A lot of the things that exasperate or annoy him about his new series incarnations are things that tend to arise when criticisms of the new series when compared to the classic series appear; the tendency to wave the sonic screwdriver around like a magic wand or a gun instead of the scientific tool it used to be, the younger (in appearance and attitude) Doctors of the new series compared to the (generally) older classic series Doctors, the increased reliance on catchphrases ("Geronimo!" "Allonsy!" "Oh, for goodness sake..."), the Doctor kissing people, and so on. Even better; he's a crotchety old man at a point in his life where he's in many ways far removed from the what the contemporary viewer understands the Doctor to be and who has to gradually learn to become this character. He's basically William Hartnell's Doctor brought forward in time to comment on how he ended up.
- Some fans have already begun to argue that the significance of Eleven's new mission to find Gallifrey and return home is a bit of a hit-and-miss as most people interpret it as his finally being able to go home after the Time War. But the reason why it's such a significant statement is that, after all those years ago when the Doctor stole a broken TARDIS and ran away from Gallifrey to go on adventures, he finally gets to go back. Imagine, leaving home, with no fixed intention to ever go back, at least permanently. And then the Time War happens, and because of what you've done, you'll never be able to go back again. Imagine going on a journey, only to return home to find your house has been destroyed and your family dead. Suddenly the ending's Heartwarming is magnified Up to Eleven. Gallifrey stands. The Doctor gets to go home again.
- Eleven being the one who realize how to save Gallifrey by tricking out time makes a lot of sense, since it's not the first time he does something similar.
- Clara doesn't believe that the Doctor has a job at UNIT, despite having travelled through his timestream. Why? Because she entered a time-scar that was the result of his time-travelling, and he did very little time-travelling during his UNIT years.
- Of course it would be Eleven who uses the analogy of Cup-a-Soups to describe the statis cube. He's a lover of processed foods since his favorites are fish fingers and custard.
- "'Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.' —Marcus Aurelius." This is the first thing said in the special, by Clara, and boy does it foreshadow the climax. The "good man = the Doctor" parallel is back, and since the Time War the Doctor's never considered himself to be a good man. But he's always been a good man, because Clara was there to teach him a lesson note . She gets all of the Doctors to stop insisting that saving Gallifrey is impossible and to just save it.
Clara: We've got enough warriors. Any old idiot can be a hero.
The Doctor: Then what do I do?
Clara: What you've always done. Be a Doctor.
- The War Doctor and the Tenth Doctor are clearly very taken with Clara, and the Eleventh Doctor has reached a point where she is clearly very special to him. Which is only understandable considering that she threw herself into time so that copies of her would be helping him out all throughout his life, to the point where one of her copies even suggested the TARDIS for him to take when he first left Gallifrey; even if he doesn't actually recognise her, subconsciously he probably identifies her as a very good friend to him.
- The three Doctors use the phrase "Gallifrey stands" to represent their plan to stasis lock Gallifrey in a pocket universe. Why is this significant? Because in "The End of Time", the High Council believe that there are two possibilities - either Gallifrey falls, or Gallifrey rises. The Tenth Doctor and the Master managed to push Rassilon and the High Council back into the Time War, ensuring that Gallifrey did not "rise" in the way that Rassilon had intended. Although at the time, it seemed as though Gallifrey was doomed to fall, we learn in "The Day of the Doctor" that this is not the case either, because the three Doctors managed to work out an alternative to destroying Gallifrey. Thanks to the efforts of the Doctor, Gallifrey neither rises nor falls. It just... stands. Frozen in an instant of time.
- Elizabeth doesn't react to the relevation that the Tenth Doctor can change his face - leading him to mistakingly suspect she's a Zygon imposter. She uses this apparent willingness to go along with things when she poses as the Zygon Commander. In real life, Elizabeth took part in so many plots and was subject to so many assassination attempts that she probably learned to keep a level head and never rule out any possibility, however daft.
- People have been speculating about how Peter Capaldi can fill the position of a fourteenth Doctor, yet, going back to The Gallifrey Chronicles, Marnal claims the Doctor to have three ninth incarnations; one is the Eccleston Doctor, one is the Hurt Doctor, and one remains unknown. When the War-Doctor regenerated, he got his wish. As for how the War-Doctor can regenerate into nine-proper; Timey-Wimey Ball. Although, at the time, this was meant to refer to the Ninth Doctor, the Other Ninth Doctor and the Other Other Ninth Doctor.
- There never was a lock on the Time War. The incident with the door in the Tower of London showed the Doctor's never tried to open the door, just assuming it was locked because it's supposed to be. Until they showed up at the climax, none of them ever tried to go back to the Time War. However, it's implied that the Moment let Ten, Eleven and Clara through the Time Lock. And Dalek Caan was driven mad by breaking the Time Lock. And Rassilon had to use the white point star and the Master to break the Time Lock. So it's definitely a thing.
- All Time Lords are Gallifreyans, but not all Gallifreyans get to become Time Lords. It could easily be that Rassilon sees non-Time Lord Gallifreyans as second-class, and therefore disposable, citizens. He could very well be using them as meatshields during the Dalek invasion of Gallifrey to buy himself enough space to hold the final meeting of the Time Lords to ratify his use of The Final Sanction.
- The last thing the War Doctor ever does before regenerating is gleefully laugh. Now, we know that this is because he just saved Gallifrey from the Time War. But he doesn't remember that. At all. Now picture that from the perspective of the Ninth, Tenth and Eleventh Doctors, who also don't remember why he was laughing. They all thought that the last thing the War Doctor ever did was laugh ecstatically after committing genocide against their own race... No wonder they were so scared of him.
- It's interesting that Tom Baker would be the one to send the Eleventh Doctor on the quest to find and free Gallifrey, as the Fourth Doctor's hunt for the Key to Time fragments was probably the closest thing Doctor Who has ever had to a traditional quest storyline.
- In the Teaser the Doctor claims that the day where Gallifrey is destroyed (or so he thinks) is the "The day Iíve been running from all my life." considering how his claim that looking into the Untempered Schism is the reason he ran from Gallifrey and considering how the Untempered Schism can open to any time and any place it's possible he saw the War Doctor seemingly destroy Gallifrey and it drove him to run and change his name to the Doctor.
- The Doctor's age discrepancy finally makes sense. The War Doctor identifies as eight hundred, which could very well be how long he fought the Time War. He started counting again from Karn, throwing away his age as well as his name. It makes perfect sense for the War Doctor to do it, and the next Doctors just kept count from there.
- This one's equal part Fridge Horror; Nine emerged believing he destroyed Gallifrey, because he would only remember himself in the shack with the Moment due to the limitation effect. He probably didn't think too much of being able to remember because in the comic The Forgotten he mentions that the Moment is made of DeMat technology, which removes the short-term memories of the user. His memory would be distorted even without the paradox.
- McGillop seems to be a fairly intelligent and reasonable member of UNIT's science department, and he seems to be Genre Savvy enough to know when Osgood breaks out her inhaler that something's wrong, so his statement that he finds it hard to believe that creatures can break out of paintings seems a little odd. Then comes the scene where the Doctor phones him and tells him to move the "Gallifrey Falls" painting to the Black Archive so he and his other selves can break into the TARDIS-proof base. It could very well be that he was in on the plot the whole time and knew the Doctors would save the day, so his line in the Under Gallery could simply be him Obfuscating Stupidity.
- Less seriously, Ten's comment that Zygon!Elizabeth, who is actually the real Elizabeth, has "breath that could stun a horse." Usually, one would think he's just trying to insult the Monster of the Week, but one remembers that people valued personal hygiene much less back then, so her breath would really be that bad. Martha made a similar comment about Shakespeare in "The Shakespeare Code" (which also featured Elizabeth I).
- The Doctor keeps getting younger and younger because the War Doctor was the oldest looking regeneration, and he was thought to commit a terrible genocide. Of course he didnít want to look that old again, it reminded him of the Time War! It was after he discovered he had saved Gallifrey, that he could regenerate into an older form without feeling an overwhelming sense of guilt!
- Every x0 Anniversary episode has been a multi-doctor story note , and this one is no different.
- Oh, there was a multi-Doctor story for the 40th. It just wasn't on the telly.
- Given the trauma the War Doctor experiences (or, at least, thinks he experiences), is it any wonder that in the Doctor Who franchise there are three Ninth Doctors? There's the Rowan Atkinson spoof version see in The Curse of Fatal Death, the dark, clearly post-war Richard E. Grant version in Scream of the Shalka, and finally Christopher Eccleston's TV version. Some expanded media have suggested that the three versions exist in alternate timelines.
- The appearance of an apparent future Doctor near the end (the man played by Tom Baker) does not violate the continuity of the next episode, "Time of the Doctor" in which Eleven assumes he is the final Doctor. That's because a few moments earlier it's confirmed that a past Doctor cannot retain knowledge acquired from a future self. Meaning Eleven likely forgot his encounter with the Curator soon after.
- There's no indication that the Curator is a future Doctor, a past Doctor, or anything else that specific.
- The Doctor's infatuation with Rose takes on a new light due to this episode: the Moment appeared as her Bad Wolf persona and even mentioned her by name, indicating to the War Doctor that "Rose Tyler" is someone who will come to mean a great deal to him one day. Even though his memories of exactly what happened were erased, he might have at least some recollection on some level of what the Moment had looked like, the name it had mentioned, and its rationale for taking that particular form, which could turn into a fixation on Rose on the Doctor's part due to her connection to the Moment. Running into Rose herself so soon after ending the Time War in his previous incarnation must have triggered something, even if just on a subconscious level, that prompted the Ninth Doctor to take her on as a companion. In this interpretation, Rose is at least another symbol of the Ninth and Tenth Doctors' inability to move beyond what they think they did in the Time War, and possibly even their subconscious memory (from their time as the War Doctor) of how they had actually saved Gallifrey and how "Rose"/the Moment had guided them in doing it, trying to resurface to alleviate their overwhelming feelings of grief and guilt over what they consciously believe they did.
- The War Doctor's regeneration is a whole lot of Fridge Brilliance. The Moment said his punishment for killing of all the Time Lords and Daleks was living. Since he didn't do it, his reward was dying. Basically, the War Doctor was punished for not killing the Daleks and it allowed him to regenerate into Nine; his reward for failure was dying... which, indirectly, saved him, with the Moment giving him a Pet the Dog Moment.
- Kate's request for information from her father's old files about "The Three Doctors" is easily pegged as a Mythology Gag about the UNIT dating controversy, but it also makes sense in-Verse: UNIT's archivists probably would have a lot of trouble deciding where to file that particular incident, because they wouldn't know for sure if it should be included among the Second Doctor's records, or the Third's. Forty years from now, Kate's own successor may well have the same problem when they need to look up the events of "Day of the Doctor"!
- Except she specifically mentions the '70s and '80s by name.
- War chides Ten and Eleven for pointing their sonic screwdrivers at him like they were weapons, yet teams up with them in directing the screwdrivers at a Dalek in exactly the same way. This seems like Hypocritical Humor, until you recall that while a sonic screwdriver isn't a weapon against organic creatures, its actual function is to manipulate machinery. The screwdrivers were indeed useless against War because he's an organic life form, but the collective power of all three was enough to override the Dalek's control of its travel machine and kill the mutant inside while sending its chassis crashing through the picture-glass.
- The Omega Vault contains all the most dangerous and forbidden weapons of mass destruction that the Time Lords have come across in their historyÖ and except for The Moment, they have already used them all.
"At least I'm not a Dalek."
"Who can tell the difference any more?!"
- Ten basically left Liz at the altar, or at least shortly thereafter. No wonder when he ran into her again a few decades later, she referred to him as her 'sworn enemy'. Heck, he's probably the reason she never married anybody else: she was waiting for him to return.
- The guard at the Black Archive has been working there ten years but because of the mind-wipe, thinks every day is his first in a new job. Just think about the implications of that... One can only hope The Doctor's actions will lead to a bit of reevaluating on that policy. That's is, unless he just demands they change it, or breaks their mind-wiping device himself.
- The survival of Gallifrey is Fridge Horror on the worst possible scale. How so? In The Ancestor Cell, he destroyed Gallifrey. In the Gallifrey Chronicles, he learned of the possibility of recreating it. Now, history repeats. How many more times throughout his lives will he destroy his home-world?
- The Doctor has always hated the Time Lords, for being lazy and then corrupt. He felt guilty about wiping them out, but who's to say the saved people on Gallifrey won't go back to their old ways? The Doctor never was looking for a home, he left because he wanted to see the universe. The Time Lords wanted to control it. And now they're back. Uh oh.
- While Gallifrey's time freeze may mimic a time lock, it still implies that Rassilon is in the pocket dimension, too, just waiting to be freed. He's back in Hell Bent.
- The Tenth Doctor helps save Gallifrey from the Time War and forgets, only to leave "The Day of the Doctor" and go to "The End of Time" where he gets to see the horror of the Time Lord High Council's plan to destroy Gallifrey and the rest of the universe. All things considered, kind of a damper on his success.
- This episode shows how powerful the Doctor's tools are when weaponized. (1) Three sonic screwdrivers can take out a single, combat-ready Dalek. Imagine what one can do to a human. (2) The TARDIS itself can take out several Daleks at once through ramming, and that was a Type 40 museum piece. Imagine what a state-of-the-art Time Lord warship can do.
- The War Doctor has considerably aged in appearance since "The Night of the Doctor". It may not be due to time. In "The Daleks Master Plan", there was a weapon called the Time Destructor. One of the effects is rapid aging. It may also have been one of the weapons from the Omega Vault used during the Time War.
- The Time Lords were about to lose the Time War to the Daleks. ALL of the Time Lords in all of space & time were called back to Gallifrey to fight, and ALL the Daleks in the universe converged on Gallifrey. If the Doctor hadn't done what he did, we'd be living in a Dalek-controlled universe right now - if we'd be living at all. (Doesn't say much for their "Lord"-ness of Time, does it?)
- The Time War was dreaded not because of the Daleks (who are causing just as much trouble outside of the Time War as they did when apart of it) but the weapons from the Omega Vault used to fight back against them unsuccessfully were causing reality to tear apart at the seams. What would happen if a Card-Carrying Villain Evil Overlord got his hands on the weapons in Omega Vault while reproducing and perfecting the Moment as a weapon and used it and the other weapons to cause his own Time War?