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Doctor Who

Episode 19

The Time of the Doctor

Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Dec 25, 2013 on BBC America
out of 10
User Rating
111 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

The Time of the Doctor

The universe's most deadliest species gather above a quiet planet to investigate a mysterious signal. The Doctor picks up Clara and goes to investigate the same signal... upon which rests the fate of the universe.

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  • A Fitting Farewell To My Favorite Doctor...

    A town on the planet of Trenzalore with the inexplicably cheesy name of "Christmas" aside, this was the perfect conclusion to Matt Smith's character and story arcs - wrapping up lots of Moffat's crazy convoluted plot threads with neat little paradoxes that fit this show like a glove (The Silence, cracks in the universe, . It's only natural that the 11th Doctor should enter the show as something out of a fairytale in a more grounded reality in the series 5 premiere, and should finish out his run as the more grounded hero of his own fairytale reality. Also that meta farewell was incredible. This episode deserves a 10/10 for sticking the emotional and story driven landing to 4 years worth of stories and has ensured that I will be watching Matt Smith's brilliant 3 series long run as The Doctor until the end of time - and if The Doctor has his way, that day will never come.moreless
  • confusing episode, redeemed by its ending

    All in all, most of the episode left me cold ( pun not intended ). There were great ideas, like Angels in the snow, "Handles", the effective return of the Dalek puppets, the "truth field", the wooden Cyberman and the clever way the Doctor dispatches it without being able to lie, an interesting explanation of what the Silents are ... but the narrative was blighted by a really, really confusing storyline. Listen, I like to think I'm not dumb, but there were several things I didn't understand : if the Doctor's presence is the very reason why Trenzalore's inhabitants are under siege, why doesn't he just use the TARDIS to leave ? How does Clara come back the first time ? How is the Doctor able to lie to her about not sending her away again ? Why does the TARDIS' second return spark an all-out war ? I'll probably understand some of those on second viewing, but right now, it seems like a mess.

    But everything after Clara comes back the second time is just PERFECT. Clara's speech to the Time Lords sums up both her character and the Doctor's perfectly, Eleven's last lines are so touching and so deep, and Amy's cameo ! And echoes of "The Long song" ! I wish the whole episode had been written with so much care. Good night, raggedy man.moreless
  • Somewhere Between Good And Great

    Almost all DW episode are good, Some are great and at least one every season is outstanding. Said episode usually being one of Moffat's. I would rate this between good and great. It would have ranked higher if not for the fact that I was expecting so much more from this episode. What I mean is that I was expecting something BIG to happen. The Time Lords coming back would have been huge. Maybe some clues as to what the Doctors name is. Some new revelations about the Doctors past(Or His Future). In my opinion Moffat missed out on blowing are minds with something unexpected,exciting or wonderful. Something he has spoiled us with over the years. I just think that in a few years the only memorable part about this episode will be the regeneration and farewell scene. I do have to admit that I'm a little intrigued about Capaldi's final statement. In his first 30 seconds of being the Doctor I could definitely see the potential for Capaldi to be a great fit for this iconic leading role. You don't really get to say that very often when a new Doctor comes in. Basically I always feel reluctant to invest any emotions in a new Doctor because I have spent years caring so much for the previous one. Somewhere in the back of my mind I always think that there is no way this guy can ever replace MY Doctor. But this time it seems a little different with Peter for some reason. He just has one of those faces and personalities that makes you want him to succeed and do well. I'm hoping this is a good sign for things to come. Another thing I have to say about this episode is about the filler scenes. Just about all the scenes with Clara's family and the turkey could have been tossed and have no ill effect on the episode whatsoever. I would have rather been watching the Doctor and seeing what he was going through in all the years he was fighting on Trenzalore. Also, The way they handled the regeneration limit seemed like an afterthought. Just a simple way out for something Whovians have been speculating about for decades. One of the bright spots for this episode was the visual effects. Some of the best ever seen on DW. Particularly with the scenes in space. The make-up for Matt Smith was also very well done. Too many times have shows tried in vein to make somebody look aged and the whole time you can't stop thinking "This person just has a crap load of make-up and a grey wig on". But not this time, Very well done.

    As far as the acting goes, Matt Smith was at the top of his game in his final episode, Especially the final Tardis scene. The scene with Handles shutting down was surprisingly emotional considering it was just a cyber head we barely knew. A testament to Smith's acting ability and great character writing by Moffat. This was one of Jenna Coleman's better episodes as well. Clara Oswald seems to be getting more and more likeable every time I see her. She has the "Girl next door" look down to a tee.

    Overall a decent episode that had the potential to be a masterpiece.

    Looking forward to the Capaldi era.

    -Rob D.moreless
  • Exposition

    Dragged in the middle, went way too fast at the end. There was so much more I expected based on where this episode seemed to be going, way much more that could have been done with it that just didn't happen, and of course, we didn't get hardly any Capaldi to get a sense of his flavor of Doctor. I was actually pretty disappointed with this episode.
  • Was expecting slightly more, but nevertheless a good episode

    From the two trailers which have floated around the internet for the past month or so, i must admit I have been looking forward to this episode (perhaps as much as the 50th anniversary special). I thought the episode was good. Any episode which ends in a regeneration is going to be emotional. However, the episode itself was not without its flaws. It relied quite heavily on exposition and the belaboured Trenzalore story ark. The constant tugging at the heartstrings with emotional one-liners and monologues from the Doctor, detracted rather than enhanced his exit. This created a somewhat anti-climatic exit for the 11th/13th Doctor. I will be interested to see how the plot develops in Series 8. But overall, good episode but expected slightly more.moreless
Orla Brady

Orla Brady

Tasha Lem

Guest Star

Karen Gillan

Karen Gillan

Amy Pond

Guest Star

Peter Capaldi

Peter Capaldi

The Twelfth Doctor

Guest Star

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

  • QUOTES (13)

    • Tasha Lem: Once, there was a planet much like any other. And unimportant. This planet sent the universe a message. A bell tolling among the stars, ringing out to all the dark corners of creation. And everybody came to see. Although no one understood the message, everyone who heard it found themselves afraid. Except one man. The man who stayed for Christmas.

    • Clara: Emergency. You're my boyfriend.
      The Doctor: Ding dong, okay, brilliant. I may be a bit... rusty in some areas but I will glance at the manual.
      Clara: No, no, you're not actually my boyfriend.
      The Doctor: Oh, that was quick. It's a roller coaster, this phone call.

    • Clara: So I may have... accidentally invented a boyfriend.
      The Doctor: Yeah, I did that once. And there's no easy way to get rid of an android.

    • Linda: How's the turkey doing?
      Clara: Great, yeah, yeah, it's doing great. Well, dead and decapitated but that's Christmas when you're a turkey. Ha.

    • The Doctor: Okay, homing in on the mysterious message. Ooh, yes, I like that. "the mysterious message."
      Clara: You shaved your head.
      The Doctor: Yep. Clever plan to get us past the shield.
      Clara: You got bored one night, didn't you?
      The Doctor: Yeah, tiny bit bored.

    • The Doctor: And she's back. (kisses Tasha) Never could resist a row.
      Tasha Lem: Kiss me when I ask.
      The Doctor: Well, you'd better ask nicely.
      Tasha Lem: In your dreams.

    • Clara: You can fly the TARDIS.
      Tasha Lem: Flying the TARDIS was always easy. It was flying the Doctor I never quite mastered.

    • The Doctor: Are you Barnable?
      Young Man: No, Doctor.
      The Doctor: It's okay, Barnable, don't worry. I have got a plan. Off you pop. (once he leaves) I haven't got a plan. The people love it when I say that.

    • Clara: You've been asking the question, and it's time someone told you you've been getting it wrong. His name... his name is the Doctor. All the name he needs and everything you need to know about him. And if you love him, and you should, help him. Help him.

    • Dalek: The rules of regeneration are known! You have expended all your lives!
      The Doctor: Sorry? What did you say? Did you mention the rules? Now, listen. Bit of advice. Tell me the truth if you think you know it, lay down the law if you're feeling brave. But, Daleks, never, ever tell me the rules!
      Dalek: Emergency! Emergency! The Doctor is regenerating! The Doctor is regenerating!
      The Doctor: Look at this, regeneration number thirteen! We're breaking some serious science here, boys! I tell you what, it's gonna be a whopper! Ha ha!
      Dalek: Exterminate! Exterminate the Doctor!
      The Doctor: Ha! You think you can stop me now, Daleks? If you want my life...haha! Come and get it!!
      Clara: Get inside! Get inside! Quick! Quick!
      The Doctor: Hahahaha! Love from Gallifrey, boys!

    • The Doctor: Ooh, it just disappears, doesn't it? Everything you are, gone in a moment like breath on a mirror. Any moment now, he's a-comin'.
      Clara: Who's coming?
      The Doctor: The Doctor.
      Clara: You... you are the Doctor.
      The Doctor: Yep. And I always will be. But times change, and so must I.

    • The Doctor: We all change when you think about it. we're all different people, all through our lives. And that's okay, that's good, you got to keep moving so long as you remember all the people that you used to be. I will not forget one line of this, not one day. I swear. I will always remember when the Doctor was me.

    • The New Doctor: Kidneys ! I've got new kidneys! I don't like the color.
      Clara: Of your kidneys? (the TARDIS shakes) What's happening?
      The New Doctor: We're probably crashing! Oh!
      Clara: Into what?
      The New Doctor: Stay calm. Just one question. Do you happen to know how to fly this thing?

  • NOTES (4)