Feeds

back to article Doctor Who: From Edwardian grump to Malcolm Tucker and back again

Since Doctor Who returned in 2005, its producers have loved showing the Doctor’s previous selves, from the pen and ink portraits in Human Nature’s Journal of Impossible Things and the Cybermen’s infostamps in The Next Doctor, to the curious, multiple incarnation runaround in the Doctor’s personal time stream in The Name of the …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
Silver badge

Hartnell probably got that one right: when time is a dimension you can indeed be cut off by eons and, if string theory is correct, universes as well.

2
0
Silver badge
Facepalm

"John Hurt’s unknown incarnation"

It is not an unknown incarnation, and hasn't been since the reveal last week.

5
0
Bronze badge
Happy

Agreed. It was nice for McGann to list the companions he's had while working for Big Finish.

4
0
Silver badge

Re: It is not an unknown incarnation

Beyond the fact that he's The War Doctor, he's still an unknown - unless you've travelled to Saturday to watched the new episode, and have popped back to be smug about it?

2
4
Silver badge

Re: It is not an unknown incarnation

"Beyond the fact that he's The War Doctor, he's still an unknown"

My reading of the article suggests that by "an unknown incarnation" the writer meant they didn't know what number he fits in the basic sequence that starts 1: Hartnell, 2: Troughton, 3: Pertwee, etc. And that is precisely what was revealed in the link I gave.

The article even hints at the possibility that Hurt is somewhere in the known sequence by questioning whether Capaldi is twelfth or thirteenth, so the only reasonable explanation is to avoid spoilers for something that is yet to be shown - but it has been shown already in the form of a mini episode published online. Which I linked to.

0
0
Silver badge

" It was nice for McGann to list the companions he's had while working for Big Finish"

It was better than nice - it's made the Eighth Doctor's BF stories officially canon. Moffat's also dropped hints that the Ninth, Tenth and Eleventh Doctors may be allowed to reprise the role for BF if they wish. Eccleston probably won't, but Matt Smith might.

4
0
Silver badge

"It was nice for McGann to list the companions he's had while working for Big Finish."

It was nice to see McGann in the role again. I saw enough to convince me that he would have made a fine doctor if he'd been given the chance. The movie let him down as much as it did viewers.

8
0
Silver badge

Re: " It was nice for McGann to list the companions he's had while working for Big Finish"

Never say never for Ecclestone. Tom Baker wouldn't do it for years and then started doing Big Finish. Janet Fielding wouldn't do anything for Who for years and got badgered into it by her former co-stars who kept on telling her what a hoot it was.

Until recently it was impossible to get Lalla Ward and Tom Baker in the same room let alone to work together and just the other day they announced that they were doing Big Finish together.

Things change, people mellow and actors talk to each other. Alot of the success of Big Finish recruiting the big names is other actors telling them what a good gig it is. It's quick, there are no lines to learn and you'll enjoy it.

0
0
Bronze badge

Re: " It was nice for McGann to list the companions he's had while working for Big Finish"

"in the same room let alone to work together and just the other day they announced that they were doing Big Finish together."

I think the expectation is that the audio will feature both of them, but still not necessarily in the same room.

1
0
jai
Silver badge

Re: It is not an unknown incarnation

My reading of the article was that it was analysing how each incarnation of the Doctor portrayed a variation in moods/motives/attitudes/etc.

And by that readeing, then Hurt's Doctor is unknown, because we've not seen enough of him to know whether he tends to anguish over the tough moral decisions, or relish the process of wiping out the Daleks and the Timelords for the greater good.

0
0

See also "The Valeyard"

From "somewhere between his twelfth and final incarnation"

oblig. Wikipedia link

1
0

Re: See also "The Valeyard"

This is very much what I am hoping for.

0
0
Anonymous Coward

"John Hurt’s unknown incarnation"

Called the Valeyard (or Boatyard if you want to upset him)...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valeyard

0
1
Gimp

Unmentionable?

In all the build up to the anniversary, I haven't heard Peter Cushing's name mentioned once. If you haven't either... you have now!

0
1
Silver badge

Re: Unmentionable?

He played a human called "Doctor Who". There is an entertaining speculation that he might be an aged Tennant-Hand (10.5 version), though...

1
0

Re: Unmentionable?

Yeah, after my original post I did some more looking around and read that about Cushing playing a human rather than a time lord too. While I'm sure it's true, fundamentally he was an old man travelling in a police box, with his grand-daughter Susan and his companions Ian and Barbara (actually I think Barbara may have been another granddaughter in the film, but hey, I'm ranting so who cares?). Which is of course entirely different to the "real" Doctor Who, who was an old man travelling in a police box with his grand-daughter Susan and his companions Ian and Barbara.

If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, fanboi's will insist it's not a duck at all. No doubt there's concern about a possible patent case brought by the creators of iDoctor which force it to be insignificantly different...

2
0

Re: Unmentionable?

Here's a bit of triv for you then. Peter Cushing's TARDIS was eventually blown up in the "New Avengers" episode "Target" in 1976. Not in a fantastic state, missing phone and lamp, and painted a dull brown colour, it was reduced to matchwood by a bomb in a child's pram.

0
0
Silver badge

Excited to see what Capaldi brings

He's a fine, fine actor, has some age and gravity but with a playful twist - could be one of the all-time greats.

Just hope the growing ROTW market 'gets' him.

2
0
Bronze badge

Re: Excited to see what Capaldi brings

He does occasionally have a bit of a twinkle to his eye, when he's making fun of something, which I fully expect to be deployed as the Doctor.

0
0

Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

Honestly, the new Doctor Who stories are hyperactive drivel for the Playstation generation. Nothing beats classic Doctor Who. It was a travesty what happened with the new writing. 1 part stories? Pah! How about 6 parters that develop carefully and build up the tension.

/rant

6
3

Re: Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

With lot of running down corridors to pad the time ;)

What you mean is a good 4 parter like Day of the Daleks, The Dadly Assassin or Robots of Death

2
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

As somebody who is in his 40s and thinks of Tom Baker as "my" Doctor - I watched Doctor Who die under terrible scripts and pathetic budgets from Colin Baker onwards, Sly McCoy's episodes were truly dreadful (and not his fault at all).

I now have kids of my own and have very much enjoyed the rebirth of Doctor Who. As for story arcs - well I'd consider the lead ins to "The Silence" and the continual cross-overs with River Song's character to be incredibly complicated and equal to anything in the "original" shows.

I think you need to climb into your TARDIS and jump forward a few years and indeed move with the times, Doctor Who has moved on, although apparently you haven't.

Failing that - stop bloody watching it...

3
2
Anonymous Coward

Re: Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

"The Dadly Assassin "

Hmmm, Freudian in the extreme.

1
0
Bronze badge

Re: Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

Yes sometimes there was padding. Either to make the story fit the time allotted or to get the cliffhanger to the right position in the story leaving a story that seemed to take a long while to get anywhere. Sometimes stories in the Classic period were rushed, or trimmed, to fit as well, leaving them confusing or with unanswered elements. And sometimes they met the Goldilocks ideal.

A four parter used to take around 80 minutes, nowadays a similar story is over and done with in 45. Bound to feel rushed for some and with few double episodes the cliffhanger seems to be a lost art. Is there a middle ground? A 1 hour Episode would have to be cut about for the American market (which is currently growing) and two half-hours would seem short. I think we have to live with 45 minutes.

0
0
Bronze badge

Re: Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

When the most acclaimed drama shows on TV are all long form story telling, it is indeed odd that 'new' Dr Who chose to go the other way.

Hint: when your leading actor won't do more than one series, you have a problem.

0
0
naw

Re: Doctor Who stopped with Sylvester Mccoy

Mmm! I sort of agree, I like the new doctors Tennant & Smith. Not such a fan of Eccleston, but the writing is often infantile and non-sensical. It's a tough job writing for such a broad audience, but - please a bit less sponge-bob.

1
0
Anonymous Coward

This episode is going to have to be a blockbuster of epic proportions to live upto the hype being created by all the free publicity being given out for it.

1
0
Silver badge

"This episode is going to have to be a blockbuster of epic proportions to live upto the hype being created by all the free publicity being given out for it."

Well it's tempted this Whodlum* into seeing if there's a reason to watch again.

Expecting the worse, hoping for the best.

*Whodlum - A fan of the series that was in it more for the OTT villains than the Doctor incarnations. (Cheesy, rubber suited monsters, the chewing the scenery Master, the monomaniacal Daleks and Cybermen... Ah, Heaven!)

0
0

80's Doctors

Can I also add a degree of annoyance to proceedings whenever writers state that after Tom Baker it all started to go wrong?

As with many people my age (35), Peter Davison was MY Doctor. Tom who? Never heard of him. I was about 5 or 6 when I first caught a glimpse of a fifth Doctor story called "The Awakening" and it scared me to death. It wasn't even a very good one looking back, but that didn't matter one bit; and it still doesn't.

He was The Doctor, and so were Colin and then later Sylvester - it doesn't matter that they were let down by JNT or the Beeb.

Don't be so bloody subjective!

0
0
Silver badge

Re: 80's Doctors

This.

Tom Baker had a few great episodes, but his theatrical acting style hasn't aged well. And there were a hell of a lot of duds too, not to mention an over-reliance on 'homages' to old gothic horror movies.

In fairness to Michael Grade, I think Colin Baker's portrayal suffered mainly from coming after Peter Davison's. Colin gave it his all – a little too much so – but the problem is that he and Tom Baker both have a strong theatrical acting background and it *really* shows when watching their stories on DVD. They both come perilously close to channeling Brian Blessed at times.

Peter Davison was very much a TV actor first and foremost and understood the medium's strengths and weaknesses. He gave a much more subtle, nuanced, portrayal. Casting Colin felt like a step backwards. Despite some decent episodes – I'm very partial to "Vengeance on Varos" and "The Two Doctors"* – Colin's tiresome schtick of repeating the same word three times, each louder than before – "Hammy? Hammy?! HAMMY?!!!—grated very quickly. Davison basically made the two Bakers' theatrical acting style obsolete.

McCoy was an inspired choice though, so it's a shame he was saddled with a bunch of scripts originally written for Colin Baker's portrayal for his first season. (And some very odd choices of scripts for the second.) His final season, on the other hand, holds up pretty well despite series' shoestring budget and the BBC's utter indifference to the series itself.

All that said, I'm still amazed the series survived the casting of Bonnie Langford. Poor Colin Baker. He never had a chance.

* (Patrick Troughton and John Stratton were clearly having a whale of a time, and we also got Jacqueline "Servalan" Pearce thrown in as well.)

1
0
Bronze badge

Re: 80's Doctors

I grew up with Tom Baker's doctor; Davison's stories didn't start airing in the US until I was in high school. But I enjoyed Davison's nonetheless. True, that was at the height of my engagement with the show: a friend whose father ran a TV station got us a copy of The Five Doctors on VHS before it aired in the US (ha!), and I got to meet Tom Baker in person at one of his Boston-area appearances. So perhaps I'd've been happy with any actor playing the Doctor.

I didn't see all of the Colin Baker or McCoy stories as by that time I was in college and had other things on my mind (and for some years didn't even have a TV of my own, come to think of it). But when I caught the occasional episode I generally liked it.

Clearly opinions will differ, but so many writers - in the articles and comments - seem to believe that their low opinion of Davison's doctor is some sort of objective fact.

0
0
Paris Hilton

The Goons, really?

Is the massed mainstream media all incorrect in reporting that the program bracketing Who's initial slot along with Grandstand was something called Juke Box Jury?

The idea of Doctor Who scheduled right next to Telegoons is too wonderful for my mind to comprehend.

0
0
Silver badge

Re: The Goons, really?

Depends...

The original 23rd November 1963 broadcast was indeed followed immediately after by an episode of the Telegoons ("The Canal" episode).

Evidence: http://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/doctorwho/6405.shtml

The first episode of Doctor Who was also repeated the following week, on the 30th of November, due to the assassination of JFK on the 23rd overshadowing the first broadcast. The next episode of the Telegoons was not broadcast until the 7th of December – skipping the 30th. I can't find any scans of the Radio Times for the 30th though, so I'm only speculating that it was likely a casualty of the decision to show the repeat.

0
0
Happy

Re: The Goons, really?

Wow. Thanks for the link.

The only way this could have been even cooler is if the TV adaptation of "The Canal" had had the same cast as the radio episode it was based on-- which included guest star Valentine Dyall, the future Black Guardian!

0
0

The new Doctor

Well why not a woman?

Why not Bonnie Langford as Dr Who?

1
0
Bronze badge
Coat

Why not a woman?

Because 1 week of every month she would be more evil and maniacal the The Master? *ducks*

I'll get my coat.

1
0
Paris Hilton

Re: The new Doctor

Bonnie Langford? Are you 'avin' a laugh??

Paris - because she would be a more credible Doctor than Bonnie Langford.

1
0
This topic is closed for new posts.