Doctor Who – Day of the Doctor full trailer

DoctorWho_DayofTheDoctorAfter much anticipation, the trailer for the 50th anniversary Doctor Who adventure due for transmission on November 23rd has arrived. Citing all 11 incarnations of the Doctor and stating that the time travelling hero has been running his entire life from one day when he will face the consequences of the life he has led, the ‘Day of the Doctor.’

GROUCH ALERT for the Editorial below

Once more the premise of the series is reduced to one of destiny, something that the program has never been about. The classic series Doctor fought injustice where he fond it, sure, but he was hardly a ‘lonely God’ or cosmic being who answered every call for help and was the one thing the monsters feared. By placing the tone of the program on such a grand scale Moffat has avoided something he has little interest in, actually writing the Doctor in an interesting story (see Terror of the Zygons or Kinda, two stories that excel yet have nothing to do with the Doctor being the ultimate cosmic force of judgement).

Additionally, the previous incarnations are reduced to broad strokes (the Second Doctor is a playful tramp with a recorder, the Fourth is swallowed up by his scarf, the Fifth is throwing a cricket ball, etc). While the Ninth, Tenth and Eleventh are cardboard standees straight from a shopping mall. If you look at previous celebratory adventures (Three Doctors, Five Doctors and even Silver Nemesis), the character of the Doctor was built up from his actions and demeanor rather than the author reminding us that he IS such an important figure in all things.

And the sonic screwdriver is now inches away from being the Doctor’s lightsaber.


I am operating under the assumption that this trailer is the total extent to which the previous Doctors will appear in the special. As they have not been involved (though I recall hearing that McGann recorded something), this flipbook of Doctors past may be all we see of the classic series (and Eccleston). If so that is just sad and let me also point out that Doctor’s 5-8 got hosed here, They are all bit invisible in the trailer and the Sixth Doctor looks like a walking fairground!

I want to be excited about the Day of the Doctor but unless there is a massive secret I am unaware of, it will not feature the previous Doctor Who actors (aside from David Tennant) and it also comes with some convoluted baggage in the shape of John Hurt, a Doctor who should not exist. I am still disgruntled that a story that should be all about the program’s past cannot incorporate that into the story (aside from some very dubious CGi work in this trailer) and will instead focus on the return of David Tennant. I’m sure that will boost  the already high ratings for the screening and admittedly Moffat wrote exceptionally well for the Tenth Doctor, but I’m still disappointed.

Moffat may pull some tricks out of his sleeves and make this what it should be, a celebration of the longest running sci-fi program in TV history.

But experience has taught me to lower my expectations.



6 thoughts on “Doctor Who – Day of the Doctor full trailer

  1. Don’t type angry – results in lots of typos!
    New Who isn’t perfect, but they want it to be something more than a British kid’s show now, hence the macking on the Doctor by the hot young companions (and Cap’n Jack, thank you RTD, for something I didn’t need). I enjoy most of the new series although last season felt really empty.
    I agree with your sonic screwdriver comment (although the light-sabre parallel hadn’t occurred to me!) but I really like the Matt Smith design.
    Due to changes in their physicality any appearances by the surviving Doctors probably should be relegated to CGI or clips. Only so much sagging can be ascribed to “wibbly-wobbly-timey-wimey.”


    • Ugh… you are right. I have updated and fixed some typoes, expanded on some thoughts. And while I understand that the previous Doctors being presented using CGi is needed to cover up their changed appearances, this trailer is no real solution as they look plastic and fake. The drop in quality in the new series is down to not knowing what to do with the program and instead uses other gimmicks and handmade characters such as Rose Tyler, Captain Jack, Amy Pond and River Song. So rarely is the Doctor the focus of the story that one wonders why he is said to be so important.


  2. It’s funny… I had an almost opposite reaction to this trailer…

    Thus far, I think this is the best, and most well-put-together thing I have seen… and that includes recent episodes of the series! Is this everything I want in a 50th ann trailer? No… but it is by far the best effort. Yeah, some of the CGI looks a little weird… Pertwee in particular looks quite odd if you freeze it on that and stare… but it is by far the most entertaining and old-Doctor-inclusive thing we have seen.

    Now… I fear this might be the best… and I too fear the special itself will disappoint. I’m allowing for the possibility that I might be surprised. I’m not hopeful, but I’m trying not to be too sour until I actually see the special.

    There is still a chance (so I’m saying there’s a chance!) that John Hurt might be who we want him to be instead of who people think he is… I would be happy with him either turning out to be The Valeyard OR perhaps a future (13th perhaps) Doctor…

    I was recently saying to someone… what would be a cool thing to do with Doctor Who… would be what they insinuated with the Next Doctor… but actually do it… by which I mean… do a story where it turns out the guy who helps out the Doctor is actually the Doctor’s next incarnation… but just don’t tell the audience.

    The problem with regenerations is that they usually get caught when they cast an actor… so this does an end-around that… Go ahead and cast the next Doctor now… just don’t say it… then put him in an episode (sans Tardis) and have him help out… then we don’t find out he is the Doctor until whenever the regeneration happens.

    I had a more elaborate idea than that actually… Say Doctor + current companion land on a planet… find someone locked in a cell who says “help me”… they help the guy out, and he doesn’t want to leave without his “friend”… and they all go on a search for that friend. Turns out the “friend” is actually an older version of the current companion… and you end with the current Doctor + companion getting thrown back in time several years and captured and the Doctor is killed and regenerates. The new Doctor (having just been rescued by his older self) then continues after that point only to find that his now several years-older companion is not happy about all that having happened years ago….

    Obviously the actual story would be better than that 🙂 But that’s the gyst… and it would be a sneaky way to get a regeneration in that nobody expects.


  3. The problem is that the John Hurt Doctor can’t be a past Doctor that we know of because Clara specifies that she saw them all and he can’t be from the future because the 11th Doctor knows who he is. And even though the Doctor claims that Hurt is not the Doctor, he is credited as such (and even has his own sonic screwdriver). So… he is most likely what I fear he is, a Moffat-ism; a character made of plot contrivances and ropy writing, a la River Song or Clara Oswin.


    • I agree on point #1… he shouldn’t be a past Doctor based on Clara’s statement.

      But… her statement is flawed already because she says “I saw all of them, you’re the eleventh Doctor”… which only can be true IF Matt Smith is the final Doctor… and the one who dies and is “buried” there… but of course we already know that isn’t true because we have Capaldi coming up… so a bigger question is why did Clara only see 11 of the Doctors?

      Besides that… he can be from the future, because the Valeyard is from the future… if he turns out to be the Valeyard, that is… then that is how Matt Smith’s Doctor knows him. Colin Baker encountered the Valeyard… and it is entirely possible (perhaps even likely) that the Valeyard was involved in the Time War.

      The future non-Valeyard Doctor is tougher… I admit… since Matt Smith knows him… but it’s still possible IF this future Doctor was in the Time War. We have hints that the Time War is at least part of this upcoming special… so it opens the door to “introduce” John Hurt any number of ways.

      I do share your fear… that despite all the possible good ways to play things out… that somehow Moffat will find the bad path. So, yeah… I will not be surprised if John Hurt’s Doctor is a let down in some contrived way… but until I see the episode I’m finger-crossing for one of the possible good ways…

      Somewhere, out in the internet… there are rumors that John Hurt might turn up again in Series 8. Could be fan-fiction, could be planted-false-rumor… but IF true… it would fit with a Valeyard theory and make me happier.


  4. I just had a crazy idea today…

    Before John Hurt stole the gossip… people were debating whether or not Tennant would be the Doctor OR the meta-crisis “Doctor” given the appearance of Rose. Once John Hurt’s Doctor was introduced, most of that took backstage.

    But here’s a crazy thought…

    Tennant is the 10th Doctor… and Rose is with him… but John Hurt is an older version of the meta-crisis Doctor. Follow me here.

    Eleven (Smith) says “you did something not in the name of the Doctor”… and Hurt says “I did what had to be done” or something to that effect. Sound familiar? Remember when meta-crisis Doctor wiped out Davros and the Daleks and Ten (Tennant) chastised him and said he couldn’t leave him running around after having done that?

    So… say Hurt is an older meta-crisis Ten… maybe his Rose is even dead… he is a loose cannon.

    I’m pretty sure I have not seen this theory pop up… and I’m posting it here first!


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