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YMMV / Doctor Who 2013 CS "The Time of the Doctor"

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Did the Time Lords give the Doctor a brand new regeneration cycle out of gratitude for his actions in "The Day of the Doctor", because they empathized with Clara's words, or because they simply needed the Doctor alive since he's the only one who can help them return? Since there's more than one of them, it could be all of the above.
  • Ass Pull: Averted in the case of the Time Lords granting the Doctor a new set of regenerations. Although the show was accused of this by some, in fact the concept of regeneration cycles being renewed had been introduced 30 years earlier in "The Five Doctors" and had been mentioned as recently as 2007's "The Sound of Drums" as having been granted to The Master.
    • Some fans have accused Moffat of doing this by having the Tenth Doctor's partial regeneration in Series 4 count against his total, so that the special could end by dealing with the twelve-regeneration limit. However, the question of whether it counted had been a matter of debate among fans since 2008, so it didn't come out of nowhere; Moffat just decided to take a side.
  • Author's Saving Throw: Some fans complained that the Tenth Doctor in "The End of Time" was really wangsty about his regeneration. The Eleventh Doctor is shown being okay and accepting of the change, culminating in a speech about how everything changes at some point.
  • Bad Export for You: Viewers who get their Doctor Who off BBC Entertainment Asia had to wait until February 2015 for the special to air in their region. It would have been No Export for You, but after getting angry letters from Whovians from all over Asia throughout December 2013 and all through 2014, The BBC finally relented.
  • Broken Base:
    • Whether the Doctor slapping Clara's butt (when introduced as her "boyfriend" to her family) is playful and cute, sexist and not appropriate for a family show or just the Doctor having No Social Skills.
    • While fans don't mind the War Doctor being added as a numbered Doctor, some don't like adding the Tenth Doctor's partial regeneration, saying that Steven Moffat added it just for angst. It caused continuity errors with several earlier episodes involving regeneration energy which would have played out differently if the Eleventh Doctor had been planned to be on his last regeneration from the start. (However it has been argued that the Doctor might not have worked out that the partial regeneration counted until sometime during his exile on Trenzalore; a deleted reference to him losing a leg (maintained in a spin-off novel and made evident only by the Doctor limping in a few scenes) might have made this more clear.)
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • The Series 9 finale nearly two years later effectively proves that no, the Time Lords don't love the Doctor; he's just a tool to be used by them. Other Gallifreyans do care about him, however.
    • At the end of Series 9, the Doctor's promise to never forget a single moment of his time as Eleven is broken when all his memories of Clara are erased.
    • "The Husbands of River Song" paints the Eleventh Doctor in a very poor light as it's revealed via a Retcon that he expected to die on Trenzalore without having seen River Song to Darillium, which would have triggered the same time-ending paradox that he is pilloried for threatening in "Hell Bent" when he tries to save Clara from her fate. If not for Clara talking the Time Lords into keeping the Doctor alive, his death would have triggered something very bad since River would not have been sent to hers.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Matt Smith wasn't the only one wearing a wig in his scene; Karen Gillan had to, as well, for her filming of Guardians of the Galaxy. She regrets "more than anything" that they didn't think of swapping wigs.
  • It's Short, So It Sucks!: Considering how most regeneration stories are usually two-parters, the fact that this story was only one special made the whole thing feel a bit rushed to some. That said, others consider "The Time of the Doctor" the finale of a loose trilogy that began with "The Name of the Doctor" and continued with "The Day of the Doctor", so it could be said the Doctor's regeneration comes at the end of a three-part story.
  • Like You Would Really Do It: After eight years of fans believing Gallifrey and the Time Lords to be gone for good, few believed that they were going to be brought back in full during the space of just two (albeit feature-length) episodes. That said, they did make their eventual full return comparatively quickly, just not this quickly.
  • Memetic Mutation: After Eleven had a vision of Amy in his final moments, with the explanation that she was "the first face this face saw", fans have speculated about the implications regarding other Doctors' regenerations. In particular, the Eighth Doctor, because the first face he saw was Pete, a hospital worker played by Will Sasso who fainted upon seeing Eight walking out of the morgue. This would create some hilarious Mood Whiplash for his regeneration in "Night of the Doctor".
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Fans have been dying for the ultimate staring contest; Weeping Angels vs. the Silence, but no; the Weeping Angels got kicked down to a few seconds' appearance.
  • Tough Act to Follow: Considering the last regeneration story was "The End of Time" this story kind of felt weak in comparison. Coming off the highly acclaimed 50th Anniversary Special didn't help matters either.
  • The Un-Twist: After months of speculation as to how the Doctor could regenerate past his final limit, it's revealed the Doctor receives a new batch of regenerations as a gift from the Time Lords. It's been implied since the 1980s that this was possible, but usually in stories involving the Master (suggesting one had to play dirty to extend their limit).


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