Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Day of the Doctor

Like many fellow Whovians, yesterday was a day I anticipated for some time. I donned my best Doctor Who shirt, and Chuck Taylor's and buckled in. My wife and I joined in on what ended up
being the worlds largest drama simulcast and were not disappointed in the slightest. I remain a huge fan of Tennant's iteration of the Doctor, so I was naturally very eager to see him reprise the role. That being the case, I was happy to see nods to moments in the seasons when Tennant was flying the TARDIS.

One big story point is that the Bad Wolf storyline was brought back in to frame. Now we know what was reaching out to the Doctor when Eccleston and Tennant were at the helm. Those two words, constantly reaching out to them through time. It turned up everywhere. And when we learned of the Bad Wolf Corporation, we thought that was it. Then it came back. Cropping up, again and again. When Rose was locked in the parallel dimension at Bad Wold Bay, and we saw her and the meta-crises Doctor for the final time, it seemed like that was it. But where were the messages coming from? Now we know!

That's what I thought of the 50th special too.
It was also nice to see seemingly minor things tied together. At the end of The Shakespeare Code, Martha and the Doctor meet Queen Elizabeth I. But she had met the Doctor before, and recognizes his face. She then gets cross and calls for his head. Martha and the Doctor run and muse why she is calling for the Doctor's execution. Time being all Wibbly-Wobbly, means that the future Doctor had already met the past Queen Elizabeth I. And now we know that she has a pretty good reason to be angry. Tennant's Doctor actually married her in The Day of the Doctor, then disappeared in his
TARDIS never to see her again.

And we can place where The Day of the Doctor, falls in Tennant's Doctor's timeline. At the end of The Waters of Mars, an Ood appears to the Doctor... Seemingly summoning him. Then in the next special, The End of Time: Part 1, the Doctor visits the Ood and just happens to mention that he did some traveling and got married to 'Queen Beth'. His relaxed demeanor is in stark contrast of how we had last seem him at the end of The Waters of Mars. Amazing what avoiding being responsible for the death of almost your entire species will do for a guy. Full of worry and despair to cool, calm, relaxed, and joking. And now we know how that transformation took place.

With Gallifrey not destroyed, but instead time-locked, some have suggested that The Day of the Doctor is going to start a story arch where the incoming Capaldi's Doctor goes out in search for his home world. But does he really have to? Some have also complained that this revelation changes everything about the last seven seasons of Doctor Who.  But does it?

In The end of Time: Part 2, Tennant's Doctor casually mentions that Gallifrey and the Time-Lords were not all killed, just locked in time. Quite a difference from when he was still referring to himself at the 'last Time-Lord' in The Waters of Mars. But with The Day of the Doctor, just happening in his personal timeline, it makes perfect sense. So, if you ask me, it all fits quite nicely. And will he go out in search of his people in order to rescue them? I have trouble believing that. In The End of Time: Part 2, the Master does bring Gallifrey and the Time-Lords back. But quickly sends them back because of what they had become during the Time-War. So unless they have had a sudden change of
heart, I can't see the Doctor wanting them back all of a sudden.

All in all, it was a great celebration of 50 years of Doctor Who. And the Tom Baker cameo was a nice treat. I do wish Eccleston would have made a surprise cameo as well, but it was a great show none-the-less. So now we begin the next 50 years of travel through space and time with the Doctor. Allons-y!

-Brain Hulk

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