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  • It's been a Running Gag in discussions of Doctor Who since at least the late sixties that whenever aliens choose to invade the Earth, they inevitably settle on London, or at least the British Isles, to start their invasion, and how ridiculous this is. However, if you think about it, choosing the UK as a starting-off point for your alien invasion actually makes a fair bit of sense. Firstly, it's a fairly small island (or a collection if we count Ireland), thus requiring less overall resources to take it — which, if you have to cross galaxies to launch an invasion, is nothing to sniff at — and, thanks to the ocean, has a natural barrier to make it easier to defend from potential liberators once you've got it while still being close enough to a larger landmass to be able to spread out into once you're ready. It's reasonably geographically stable, meaning that your invasion is unlikely to have to deal with any major natural disasters which will divert resources from your operations for clean-up, with a fairly stable and mild climate (if you don't mind lots of rain). It's a technologically advanced and industrialised nation (but, considering these are galaxy-crossing aliens we're talking about, not necessarily so technologically advanced that they can put up much of a fight) with manufacturing resources/capabilities that can be converted to your purposes. It has a large population that can be converted into slave labour if necessary. Furthermore, the population is largely not militarised and weapons such as firearms are comparatively rare and not largely available to the public, thus making organised resistance outside of the military/police — who are presumably going to be targeted in the first assault — more difficult. It has access to a fairly well-connected communications network which can be used for mind-control/propaganda purposes. As for London, for better or worse it's the capital and in many ways the centre of British government, economics, military and so forth — knock that out, and the country's automatically destabilised. Okay, it might not be perfect, but it makes sense that they keep coming to Britain — frankly, we're kind of lucky that the Doctor likes hanging out there... ~ DoctorNemesis
    • Perhaps they simply haven't yet noticed Australia.
      • Even aliens are scared of Australian wildlife!
      • Australia's quite big and contains lots of wild, inaccessible regions that could be hard for an invading army to control or police, thus making it easier for a resistance or defending army to continue an active opposition. The most inaccessible parts of Britain, however, can be reached within a few hours, depending on the mode of transport. It's thus a lot easier to manage.
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    • You know, the same justification mostly matches Tokyo, Japan.
      • True, although Japan's position in the "Ring of Fire" (namely; slap-bang in the centre of a geographically unstable collection of continental faultlines that in turn create numerous volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunamis and all such fun things) might make it a bit less reliable in terms of the "reasonably geographically stable" requirement.
  • It always bugged me that Earth history is conveniently "fixed", when the Doctor can evidently meddle with other planets all he wants. But it hit me — the Doctor's encounter with Ian and Barbara, and later human companions, changed him forever; anything that disrupts human history risks retconning away those first meetings, thus completely changing who the Doctor is. And given what a Jerkass the Doctor was in those first couple of serials, probably not for the better. Earth history is only a "fixed point" for the Doctor. ...aaand suddenly "you can't change history, Barbara, not one line!" makes a lot more sense. — Fleetlord
    • That's explicitly the reason the protagonist isn't allowed to meddle with Earth's past in the original fiction story I'm writing (which is partially inspired by Doctor Who): knocking history off course has a high chance of erasing her own birth.
      • May I ask for the title?
    • On a more cosmic reason, the Doctor knows that meddling with time is not like pulling weeds... even if he were to stop, say, the Holocaust, he realizes he might accidentally set into motion something even more monstrous in its place.
      • Alternatively, you could say it's EXACTLY like pulling weeds. Removing a weed with deep roots can tear up the other plants and dirt around it and leave a hole that needs to be smoothed over. Likewise, removing events with deep ties to the universe's history can lead to unfortunate consequences that the Doctor would have to fix.
  • Now that "Missy" has proven that gender really isn't an obstacle to what a Time Lord can regenerate into, and the implication that he can "choose his face" somewhat during Regeneration, why does The Doctor always regenerate into a white, mid-to-upper-class British male? Well, consider first he is a Lord, a privileged and elite member of his home society (albeit a renegade one, but he still enjoys a lot of social privileges despite it). Consider secondly how much he likes slumming about Earth (with the UK as his apparent base of operations, especially during Three's run), and the large reach of the British Empire for several hundred years' worth of Earth history. It makes sense that he'd go in for an identity that is a rough analogue of what he'd be back on Gallifrey.
    • Alternatively, if the Doctor can choose his face, why does he always wind up with something he doesn't like? Big ears, "new teeth", oddly coloured kidneys, there's always something a little bit off that annoys him. Even maybe just his hair not being ginger. Yet we've sen Romana pick various forms for herself... it's possible that, like flying the TARDIS, regeneration is something that takes a lot of skill and practice, and the Doctor just isn't as good at it as he'd like to pretend he is. Thus every regeneration, he winds up pretty much set to random and hoping for the best, as opposed to actually deciding how he wants to look.
  • Fridge Brilliance; the Doctor visited little Amy Pond in 1996. Meanwhile, in real life, 1996 was the year the Doctor Who TV movie was released, when the Doctor appeared again. Think about it; little Amy was shaped (in a way) with that appearance, and so were (hopefully) the people who were kids when that movie came out. That was their first "meeting" with the Doctor, just like Amy. — Space Gandalf
    • Made even more brilliant when you realise that Amy is pretty explicitly a hardcore Doctor Who fan in companion form. She knows the genre and instinctually accepts it... Gizensha
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    • Not only that, Amy was seven at the time. She was born in 1989 (when Seven's last series was broadcast). Also, the main part of the episode takes place in 2008 (Ten's last full series broadcast), and the end takes place in 2010 (Eleven's first series broadcast). Amy's effectively a bridge between all of the Who incarnations. petefromoz
  • I think I've figured out the number one thing that's different between when Steven Moffat is writing and anyone else's stories. Not the Nightmare Fuel, not the clever dialogue — it's that Doctor Who under Moff is, above all else, a show about time travel. Moff episodes are far more likely to involve going back and forth in time during the episode itself and less likely to just use it as a way to get Team TARDIS to wherever the Monster of the Week is. Even the ones that just use it as a setup have characters who are in some fundamental way based on time travel; "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances" gave us a renegade Time Agent, while "Silence in the Library"/"Forest of the Dead" gave us River Song. ~ Phoenix Fire
    • Note the title of the episode where River Song is introduced: "Silence in the Library". And what is she wearing the first time we meet her? Yup—a spacesuit. (And the title of Part 2 of that episode? "Forest of the Dead". Because the only water in the forest is the river.) —JadeEyes1
    • And "The Girl in the Fireplace" was of course a time travel episode, but is notable in being one of the few such episodes where the TARDIS isn't the only means of time travel. Also, the Weeping Angels' power is time-based, as is their weakness to direct observation. Now that Moffat is show runner, time travel and its associated tropes are the main theme of the show. ~ AKA Goldfish
  • In "The Wedding of River Song", the question, the oldest question in the universe, the one hidden in plain sight, is finally revealed. At first glance, the "oldest question in the universe" hidden in plain sight, the first question ever asked, sounds like, well, the first question an intelligent being ever asked early in time. But it's not. Instead, it's simply "Doctor who?"... the title of the show. Before anyone saw the first seconds of footage of the Doctor on TV, they read that question. It really is the original question! (Unfortunately, it's not the original question actually spoken in the show, which would be "Not gone yet?" from Ian to Barbara in "An Unearthly Child". But that wouldn't be nearly as cool of a question.) —Alynnidalar
    • Better. Why can the question never be answered? Because the show would end. —TOZ
    • And better yet: one of the most frequent complaints / concerns people have expressed about the show is that we can't find out too much about the Doctor because it destroys the mystery and the allure around him.
  • "Just this once, Rose! Everyone lives!" Rule 1: The Doctor lies. Not about the "everyone lives". "Just this once." Every once in a while, the Doctor gets lucky and ... "Everyone lives!". And it's the happiest day in his life.
  • Combining "The Wedding of River Song" with "Silence in the Library"/"Forest of the Dead" packs multiple moments: why the Doctor is willing to proceed to "The Fall of the Eleventh", why he spent over two hundred years finding a way past a fixed point, how even knew his ruse would work, and why he was so discombobulated by River's trust password that first meeting in the Library. He is facing the first question, the question that must never be answered, the question he has been "running from all [his] life" — and he has already met someone who knows the answer! As he told River: "There's only one reason I would ever tell anyone my name. There's only one time I could..."
  • At the end of "The Wedding of River Song", the Doctor turns and gives the camera a devilish grin while Dorian shouts the one question that must never be answered. Clever little Fourth Wall gag, right? Except the TARDIS can travel to and intercept contact from any point in time and space in any reality. Including realities in which the Doctor is a fictional character in a popular British television franchise that's been running for over 50 years.
    • So why doesn't he drop in on us for a visit? He prefers the larger audience. He's being extremely clever on TV, and there are more people to stand around looking impressed. That's the point in having you all!
      • You're forgetting that the Doctor actually cannot travel between different realities intentionally. When he travels to that alternate reality in "Rise of the Cybermen" it was a malfunction, and later in "Doomsday" any possibility of travelling to alternate universes is destroyed when the Void is sealed off. Also there's the fact that the TARDIS only runs on power from it's home universe.
      • ...Except in the Classic Series, where the Doctor used to travel between different realities all the time. It was only after the Time War that travel to alternate universes became more difficult.
      • An explanation to this could be that once Gallifrey had been Time Locked and, therefore, inaccessible by the usual means, the Doctor doesn't have a place to dry-dock the TARDIS to properly recharge at a much more convenient rate (Cardiff is more like a quick solution — like a pit stop at a race compared to a proper shop). Also the TARDIS is getting on in her old age so extra-dimensional travel has grown slightly more difficult to manage.
      • There have actually been two comic storylines where the Doctor ends up in a universe where his adventures are just a TV show, including him meeting Tom Baker and Matt Smith.
  • While watching "Let's Kill Hitler", I wondered why the TARDIS didn't use Idris for the voice interface. I only just realised today — that was probably a sad memory for the TARDIS. ~ Dragon Riding Sorceress
    • Except, very little of the voice interface — if any, is actually controlled by the living part of the TARDIS, which, based on how Idris acted, is probably a good thing. After all, it seems the TARDIS has trouble with telling the difference between what happened, what is happening, and what will happen. Not exactly a good idea when it comes to delivering important information now. It's also why the voice interface, despite being based on real people, comes across as quite robotic.
  • Doctor Who technobabble has been much maligned, but in this case there's an excuse — the Doctor is explaining advanced four-dimensional science in Gallifreyan, which the TARDIS's telepathic field then attempts to convert to 20th-century English — a feat similar to translating a quantum physics paper into Classical Latin. It's hardly surprising that the result is often something nonsensical like "reduce the polarity of the neutron flow". — Fleetlord
    • It's "Reverse", not "Reduce" — which makes slightly more sense in the context of "polarity", provided you don't stop to think that a neutron flow can't have polarity, as neutrons are neutrally charged. Unless it's gravitational polarity, indicating something with negative mass; or possibly strong force polarity, but strong force has color charge, so that doesn't seem likely... <And for those of you wondering, yes, all of that actually had a basis in real-world physics terms.>
      • Actually, it is more the fact that, polarity might be an orientation — Everything has a "north" or "south" so the neutrons and the flow they are in is a directional conduit (like using the "right hand rule" in electronics). By pushing a neutron from point A to point B, you might be filling a reservoir, or draining it. Possibly the interaction of the device needs to have more neutrons or less to regulate this control, like a potentiometer is used to dial up and down the resistance of a circuit.
      • That would make sense if "polarity" and "direction" were synonyms.
    • It could go the other way, too. Whenever a human speaks to him in standard English/French/whatever, it would naturally translate to basic, possibly even broken, Gallifreyan. No wonder he's so quick to call us pudding brains.
      • Probably not, since it's been indicated the Doctor speaks English perfectly well to the point that probably is the language he's normally communicating in.
  • Fridge Brilliance: In all the episodes of Series 5, the Cracks in Time appear at the end (usually, anyway) as the series arc. There is some confusion as to why they become more noticeable when the Doctor leaves. This being the ultimate time travel story, this is because he is heading down the path that ultimately burns them and wipes them from existence; the shining reflects this as he passed them, meaning their fate is being forever sealed.
  • Fridge Horror: where are Amy's parents? She lives alone in a large, family house but has no family, nor ducks in her duck pond — just a reality-eating crack on her wall...
  • Fridge Horror: The Doctor can speak "baby". If that's true, and at least one baby is smart enough to refer to himself as "Lord Stormageddon", does this mean that Baby Geniuses is actually right?
    • He claims to speak Horse too. He's probably kidding about that, but if he's not, what would that say about how humans treat horses?
  • Fridge Brilliance from "Partners in Crime":
    The Doctor: You have... uh... a hatbox?
    Donna: Planet of Hats, I'm ready!
    Trope reference win!
  • I was wondering why, if the Doctor supposedly has a very cold body temperature, no one in series ever bothers to notice or mention it. Then it hit me: it's an in-joke. Doctors always have cold hands.
  • Fridge Logic: I just realized this while writing a fic. Why is the Doctor so obsessed with 20th/21st century England? Who did he literally lock out and abandon in 1960s London? (Hint: go all the way back to "The Dalek Invasion of Earth".) Of course he wants to make sure the Earth in that time period stays relatively safe... — roane72
    • In 1960s London? That was actually 22nd century London, in fact.
    • It's likely a cascade effect. Sure, The Doctor wants to protect Susan. That's why they came to Earth in the first place. But... oh, bother. Her teachers showed up and asked too many questions. Well, Ian and Barbara turned out to be good folks, better look out for their world and timeline. Oh, but Ben and Polly showed up... and might as well look out for them, too. And we need to make sure Zoe is born to ensure a stable time loop, and then... Oh, to heck with it. Looks like this particular time, planet, and location on said planet is "home base" because there's too many Companions who'd be in danger otherwise.
  • Season six of the revived series is, in many ways, utterly different to any series of Doctor Who to come before it but the most recent series convinced this Troper that whatever his failures, Steven Moffat is a bloody clever man. The modern series has always commented on the Doctor's flaws and the fear he inspires, but Season Six in particular is all about how people are rebelling against him due to the utter terror he leaves behind in his wake. When you think about it, it's a total, deliberate deconstruction AND reconstruction of what the Doctor is. Amy is supposed to be a deconstruction of all previous companions: a high-speed demonstration, in microcosm, of exactly what the Doctor does to them. Rory too acts as a mouthpiece and demonstration of the rational, logical danger the Doctor poses: he's the damage left behind. And then of course you have at the end, when pretty much everyone the Doctor has ever helped, realising he's in trouble, stands up and offers to help him: an affirmation that yes, all the aforementioned points are true, yes the Doctor is an imperfect bastard who deserved to be called out more — but he is still a hero worth believing in... And just as Jack Harkness too demonstrates, a hero and a monster are often flip sides of the same coin. And next season? Will apparently bring an answer to the question we've all been asking for fifty years: Doctor Who? One possible, final answer to Moffat's deconstruction of the Doctor? I'd like to hope so.
    • Steven Moffat is the king of fridge brilliance! His story has all been leading up to the Question: Doctor Who? In one of his earliest episodes, "The Girl in the Fireplace", waaaay back in series 2 before he was even the show runner, he has Madame de Pompadour read the Doctor's mind and say, "Doctor Who? It's more than just a secret, isn't it?" FOUR YEARS before making that the driving plot point of the show. Bravo, sir. Bravo.
    • Considering trusting the Doctor has been a major underlying theme of the Moffat era thus far (even arguably going back to his episodes during the RTD era), it's a deeply interesting deconstruction that in "The Wedding of River Song" the one person who didn't unconditionally trust the Doctor was the one responsible for the breakdown of time itself, and the only person who could set it right — his own wife.
      • The reason for this is because River at that point in her own timeline is still very young; she's still studying and hasn't been put into Stormcage yet, compared to her later appearances when she's either a prisoner or has been released and finished her studies, and thus has spent more time with the Doctor.
  • The first time the question "Doctor Who?" is asked is in the episode "The Cave of Skulls". Where does the Doctor find out this is the ultimate question? In a cave full of skulls.
    • And what's at the bottom of his confession dial? Yup. Lots and lots of skulls.
  • When River explained her relationship to the Doctor, she said to Amy, "He knew everything about me. Can you imagine what that does to a girl?" And Amy, of course, nods and says she does. I always thought that was very odd though, given that when she was a little girl she only met the Doctor once, briefly, and it gave her a childhood of questionable mental stability to fight through. Then, at the end of "The Angels Take Manhattan", we find out that yes, she does know exactly what it's like for a strange man in a box to come to you as a child and tell you your life's story — because she sent him back to tell her. So all of a sudden, a moment I've always thought was very odd now makes tragically perfect sense. —Vergess
  • The Gunslinger from "A Town Called Mercy" has a short range teleporter that is only ever seen when he walks towards the town, which seemed to be just Rule of Cool or Awesome, but Impractical, since it makes the Gunslinger flicker around without having any obvious effect on his speed (though arguably, it was actually letting him cross the desert impossibly quickly). Then, after thinking about it for a while, it occurred to me that the Gunslinger is one of many soldiers, and would presumably have been in a legion of similar cyborgs. Imagine for a moment you were a lookout or guard of a fortified emplacement, seeing multiple similar cyborgs advancing in that same way. How are you supposed to keep track of them when they keep appearing and disappearing? How are you supposed to aim at them or shoot them? For that matter, how can you even make a reliable headcount? By flickering in and out of view en-masse, probably out of synch, they would be unimaginably disorientating and demoralising to anyone unlucky enough to be in their way. No wonder they ended the war so quickly..
  • In "The Angels Take Manhattan", River complains about the Doctor using up some of his regeneration energy to heal her wrist. Well, maybe he had some left over from what she used on him in "Let's Kill Hitler"...
  • Fridge Horror about the Season 5/6 finales:
    • The subsequent near-Ret-Gone of the Whoniverse, if not The Multiverse, was the result of the TARDIS being detonated. Keep in mind that the Doctor's TARDIS is an out-of-date and old model. Compare this to the Time War, when countless state-of-the-art TARDISes for battle were used. If a primitive TARDIS is capable of triggering a retroactive destruction of the universe, what kind of destruction did the Time War cause and why didn't it plain old annihilate everything?
      • This Troper used to wonder why the destruction of the TARDIS was so incredibly dangerous, considering that there used to be a whole lot more of them flying about time and space prior to the time war. And then I realized: there also used to be a whole race of time travellers who would know how to deal with an emergency like an exploding TARDIS, and be able to contain or repair any damage done. With the loss of the Time Lords, an exploding TARDIS suddenly becomes a much bigger problem.
      • In addition to Time Lord intervention, it's probable that the newer TARDISes had greater security measures in place to prevent that sort of thing from happening. I can't imagine that the Time Lords would go too long without inventing something to keep their ships from obliterating reality whenever one blew up.
      • (Also, in response to the Series 5 question, why did the Silence want to destroy time and space?, it's entirely possible that they didn't. They just wanted to eliminate the Doctor and his technology, and didn't know what the consequences would be.)
      • The contemporary descriptions of the Time War are that the entire universe is being destroyed by the War. All of time and space was burning, and that is why the Doctor felt he had to take such extreme measures in order to not just stop the War, but make it so that neither side had ever existed. The destruction of a few TARDISes may have been a big part of why the whole of reality was almost lost.
    • As revealed in "The Wedding of River Song", denying a fixed point will cause history to gradually collapse. Chances are that countless time travellers have accidentally (or worse, purposely) made the mistake of denying a fixed point, and the only reason anything exists at all is because they were lucky enough to not make it impossible to fix-the Whoniverse is far too fragile for its own good.
    • And/or the Doctor fixed them all.
  • Fridge Logic: Despite all the Timey-Wimey Ball included, much of River Song's arc should not be possible:
    • In "The Big Bang", River is present when the Doctor reboots the Universe so that the cracks aren't just closed — they never happened at all in this new Universe. Next from River's POV is "Flesh and Stone", where she and the Doctor are only saved by a crack in the Universe which swallows the Weeping Angels — a crack that should not be there, as River remembers the events of "The Pandorica Opens" and what followed next.
      • River likely remembers separate timelines, like Amy and Rory did after the universe was rebooted. Even considering, if the cracks never happened, the angels would have never crashed the Byzantium, since they were after the crack's temporal energy to feast upon. If the ship never crashed, River would never have been in trouble in the first place.
    • In "The Angels Take Manhattan", River is released from the prison after Eleventh Doctor erases himself from every database ever. Later from her POV she and Tenth Doctor are in the Library and the Doctor tells Vashta Nerada to look him up — which they do, in the records that should not exist.
      • The Library's records of the Doctor are on printed paper, not data files. Erasing himself from all databases wouldn't destroy hard copy records, which is why UNIT still has records for Kate to call up information from in "The Day of the Doctor".
      • He might well have left the Library's records alone—after all, a) as noted above, they're unhackable, and b) he knows that he used those against the Vashta Nerada. Besides, once the Library is owned by the Vashta Nerada, the chances of anything getting in and using those records are pretty slim.
    • And the biggest of them all, River is present in "The Pandorica Opens"... despite her biological father never being born in the current version of reality (Auton!Rory is not her biological parent!).
      • This is no different to Amy, whose own parents were swallowed by the crack before the series even began. Like Amy herself, River had probably been exposed to enough temporal energies to be immune to the effects of the changing timeline; and considering River herself was part-Time Lord thanks to being conceived in the TARDIS, she probably had a greater level of resilience than her human parents did.
    • In short, Doctor's adventures sometimes fall into You Already Changed the Past, but sometimes they do alter the flow of history radically — time can be rewritten and all, then. Because we're following his perspective, paradoxes are rather easy to explain, but not so with River.
  • Fridge Brilliance: In the new 2013 intro, the Doctor's face is in the background, lurking in the shadows, unlike the previous faces, which took up the whole screen. Somewhat fitting as the Doctor is now hiding from the Silence, "lurking in the shadows" of the universe since faking his death.
  • Just realized this, but concerning the always polarizing River Song — YMMV of course. Many have pondered the possibilities of the Doctor turning into a woman for one regeneration. Well, if you squint, River pretty much is one possible result. Classy, ready-for-action, always well dressed no matter the occasion...who else was like that? The Third Doctor. Who was Alex Kingston's personal favorite Doctor? The Third Doctor (Jon Pertwee).
    • And we later learn that Kingston is the Third River.
      • Maybe not...We see the little girl start to regenerate in 1960s America. We're later told that she regenerated into a toddler. But we also know she grew up with her parents, in the UK in the 1990s — she was in the same class as a seven year old Amelia. That's a gap of three decades and an age difference of five years. Either she got a time-travel ride we haven't seen yet, or there's one more regeneration we haven't seen yet!
  • Fridge Horror: This picture on the relationship between Jack, the Face of Boe, River, Dorium, and the Headless Monks.
  • Fridge Brilliance: At the climax of "The Name of the Doctor" Clara jumps into the Doctor's timeline to save him, splitting her entire being into millions of possibilities, all centred on encountering the Doctor and helping him in some way. The cost is not remembering him in every encounter. What's so meta fridge brilliance about this? It's the Doctor's entire timeline. We've seen her running around throughout the Doctor's past, but there's still his untold future. The show has basically established a very, very definite, non-Ass Pull way to explain how Clara could still be around in the event that Jenna-Louise Coleman would eventually decide to leave the show (especially if it happens to be an "exit by death").
  • "The Name of the Doctor" ends by introducing a previously unseen version of the Doctor, played by John Hurt. So in the end, we see a brief conversation between two Doctors: John and Smith.
  • Fridge Brilliance: After "The Snowmen" aired, some fans were concerned that an 1893 origin for the Great Intelligence was too recent, given that in "The Abominable Snowmen" it seemed to have been meddling at the Det-Sen monastery for centuries. "The Name of the Doctor" provides the answer: it had access to the Doctor's entire timeline, and the Doctor had visited the monastery in the 17th century.john_e
  • The Great Intelligence wanted to corrupt the Doctor's timeline, what happened to the companions?
    • Clara saved them when she went in after it, presumably. Though it's possible she wasn't successful in all cases, which would explain why some of them have died, been thrown into the past, etc.
  • Fridge Brilliance: The Doctor and other time travellers are still subjected to conventional rules of time, just not in the same dimension as the rest of us. Think of it: each time a major change happens, it affects all of the Universe ever. "There are cracks in the Universe, there always has been." → "There are no such thing as stars, there never has been." → "The Universe is fine, always has been." is one of the more prominent examples, but there are others. There used to be no Time War and Time Lords were around at various points of time, now there has always been a war and there are no Time Lords no matter when you go. The Doctor has always been a known figure → No, wait, no known records of him existed, ever. The Doctor died at Lake Silencio, he always died there and everybody knows that → No, wait, his tomb is on Trenzalore and that has always been a known fact. And so forth — Each time a major change happens, all of time is affected, creating a different timeline (or an Alternate Universe). If time is the 4th dimension, this can be thought of as the 5th: The Doctor can travel back and forth along the timestream all he likes, but at any given moment he only has access to the "present" version of reality, has no way of knowing what a "future" version might be like and has absolutely no way to access "past" version of reality, though he still remembers it thanks to the Ripple Effect-Proof Memory.
    • Now, this also means that almost every new adventure of the Doctor takes place in a new version of the Universe. Sometimes the changes made are minor and result in a Close-Enough Timeline, allowing Stable Time Loops to form. Other times, the changes are significant and all of the "past" history from the point of change onwards is Ret-Gone. This IS the Timey-Wimey Ball that accounts for the majority of Fridge Logic within the series: the events of many, many past episodes never happened in the version of reality we observe The Doctor in right now. And, since according to Amy from "The Girl Who Waited" being Ret-Gone or even having your entire life re-written is equal to death, the Doctor has killed every inhabitant of the Universe ever dozens, if not hundreds of times. Which is where the "creature soaked in the blood of a billion galaxies" comes from.
  • Fridge Brilliance: In the early scenes of "The Day of the Doctor", it just seems a cute Brick Joke that one of the Gallery employees is wearing a scarf in the style of the 4th Doctor. But after War Doctor and 10th Doctor leave, the 11th Doctor finds the curator familiar. Watching the anniversary documentaries help you recognize that the uncredited curator is played by Tom Baker, the actor who played the 4th Doctor decades earlier, meaning that doctor somehow survived in this timeline, became the curator and there for probably gave her the scarf.
    • Tom Baker/Curator says something to the effect of him returning to favorite forms...implying that in a future regeneration he took a form similar to or identical to his fourth incarnation.
    • Goes from brilliant to massive doses of Squick after Moffat claimed she kept it when the curator and the gallery employee slept together (of course, given that Rule #1 is Moffat Lies, this should be taken with some salt).
  • The idea of some great secret being behind the Doctor starts about the 25th anniversary. It now seems to be brought up for the 50th and concluded there. So for the 25th anniversary there is something which is completed after another 25 years.
  • Moffat originally wanted to write a scene with Amy and Rory considering getting the Doctor a nanny because of how much of a kid he acts like. Had Moffat written and filmed that scene it would have made one doozy of a Hilarious in Hindsight, as Clara's occupation is that of a nanny in her Victorian incarnation and early in her contemporary one.
  • It's quite fitting that the Twelfth Doctor was introduced to the series at the end of the twelfth month of the 50th anniversary year. Not only do the numbers match up quite nicely (each month now has a corresponding Doctor, so to speak), but it's even more so that he's first appearing in a Christmas special; not only is Christmas/New Year commonly seen as a time heralding new beginnings, but it will be broadcast almost exactly one month after the 50th anniversary celebration — the rest of the year has focused heavily on the show's past, so now it's time to look to the future...
  • The Eleventh Doctor, the thirteenth incarnation, takes his final bow in 2013. The Twelfth Doctor, the fourteenth incarnation, begins his run in 2014.
  • Twelve's commentary on the "take a broom, replace the parts" paradox doesn't only describe the Doctor's regenerations, but also the show itself! Ever since William Hartnell retired and other actors took up the role, the series has continually been "replacing" the Doctors, companions, sets and enemies.
    • Which begs the question: Is this still the same Doctor Who, far removed from its 1960's black-and-white low-budget "educational" serial roots? Fans will differ on this, but it's an intriguing take on the whole scope of the Doctor Who mythos.
  • As if what happened to Donna Noble wasn't gut-wrenching enough... the last Companions who got mind-wiped were Jamie and Zoe, who were essentially punished with Mind Rape for The Doctor's rebellion against Gallifrey. Two adored his Companions, and having to be forced apart from them, them being forced apart from each other, and them no longer remembering him or each other? That left scars that kept him from getting too close or fond of his Companions for a long time after that, including why Four left Sarah Jane behind. He'd fight for them, cross a galaxy for them, even give up a few lives for them, but emotional closeness, not so much. There was always that fear that Gallifrey would do it again. And now he's the Last Time Lord. No Gallifrey. Nothing forcing his hand, but now he has to be the one having to Mind Rape a beloved Companion and force her to forget? That is one seriously gut-wrenching Shoot the Dog. It's telling that when in the position of having to do it again (this time to Clara), he's actually relieved when the device goes off and wipes his memory instead. It's sad, sure, but it's a fitting punishment.
  • The sonic sunglasses seem to be a real eye-roller, but they're brilliant on a meta level; Capaldi admitted in interviews he was a young Doctor Who fan who was too poor to afford to make the elaborate costumes of previous Doctors for cosplay, so he chose his Doctor's costumes to be very simple so Twelve would not be financially out of reach. A sonic screwdriver prop can be too expensive or hard to find for a young and/or broke cosplayer, but a pair of cheap sunglasses? The local drugstore (or dollar store) will have those.
    • Plus, a lot of the Doctor's enemies are used to him whipping out a screwdriver to fix things and will be on guard. They don't know that he can now sonic stuff basically just by glancing at it. If they see him fiddling with his specs, they'll just assume he's being eccentric as usual.
  • In "Rose", when asked about his northern accent, the Doctor states that 'lots of planets have a north'. Does this mean that there are planets out there that don't have North?
    • Castovalva didn't. Or possibly it had a North in every direction.
    • Entirely possible, given how weird the Doctor Who universe is. Also, "North" (and the other cardinal directions) are just references to a magnetic pole. Not that hard to believe there are planets out there without one.
  • Fridge Brilliance for why so many of the Doctor's companions are young women: Given that the BBC was (and probably still is, to a certain extent) rather sexist, Men Use Violence, Women Use Communication is probably in full play. The Doctor wants companions who will, like him, try to solve problems by ingenuity and communication, rather than violence. Even the male Companions, like Adric, Rory, and Jamie weren't the macho type. (Ben, Captain Jack, and Ian were probably as macho as Companions ever got). As for why they're young, well, he does a lot of running. Quite simply put, most people past their mid-forties won't have the energy to run up and down corridors all the time. Younger folks are also less set in their ways (at least in theory), so they're better able to keep up with his rapid fire "education" about the wider universe. (Plus, he's 2000 something by now, if not into his 3000s: Everyone's young to him.) Similarly, he gets a lot of guff, even occasionally in-universe, for most of them being attractive and wearing revealing clothes. This is a something-thousand year old alien: Given how he acts around River, he probably doesn't even notice human standards of attractiveness!
    • For that matter, physical beauty is probably a much less important feature of Gallifreyan society, given that you're going to be a lot less concerned about looking handsome/beautiful when you might fall down the stairs and end up with a completely different body. Imagine being John Barrowman and regenerating into a Sickly Neurotic Geek (or vice versa)!
  • Took me this long to realize why Time Lords have twelve regenerations instead of twelve lives. Look at a clock; to complete one whole round, the hands are at the twelve o'clock position twice: which makes 13 points, with the last marking the end.

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