Doctor Who

Episode 19

The Time of the Doctor

16
Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Dec 25, 2013 on BBC America
8.0
out of 10
User Rating
96 votes
7

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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The Time of the Doctor
AIRED:

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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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Last time for Doctor 11

    10
    It's always hard to say goodbye to each version of the Doctor, we know them so well once their gone it's like losing a best friend. The Doctor's regenerations to me are like seasons, when one ends another must begin.



    It's true this story isn't perfect, there are some inconsitances in places but most of all his relationship with the woman that runs the Church (forgot her name sorry) doen't really make much sense, let alone why would the Tardis trust her with the knowledge to work it? Clara once again doesn't have a lot to do.

    I also wish we saw more battle sequences, would of liked to of seen how the doctor thurts some of the other alien species that come to the planet but that probably couldn't happen because of time constraints or might have made the special too long so I can't complain too much.



    Other than that everything else is fine. In a way the story is almost like a Western, in a way all of the hostile Alien species are the evil posse only instead of steeling money or breaking criminals out they come to the planet just to destroy the portal that is there for the planet Gallerfry to come out of. Though that's one of the inconsistences, how the hell to they honestly think they can destroy it when portals operate like doors which can open and close anywhere? And the Doctor is pretty much the hired cowboy/temporary Sheriff that will defend the town, though here it's an entire planet which makes things even harder. This really was a cool idea, sure the Doctor has defended planets before but this was different because this was a relentless siege. Basically the Doctor has been given a raw deal where if he stays on the planet they'll destroy it, if Galafrey comes out they'll destroy it (what the hell is their problem with that planet anyway), if he leaves they'll destroy the planet anyway, any way you slice it he's fraked.



    And of course we see as the hostile alien species constantly attack even with different stratigies; one attack that stands out was a wooden Cyberman which I thought was inventive and I really like the design. It almost seems like a foolproof plan since the Doctor's screw driver can't work on wood but the Cybermen overlooked one crucial detail, not all of there features can be wood, which is why the doctor is able to triumph once more. I even love the fact that in that planet he's gotten lots of fanfare as we see in his home there are cards and letters that have completely decorated his walls and heck they even put on a puppet show, in a way I feel that represents us the fans, and the fact that the people and even Clara wants him to continue to stick around is our feelings also.



    As we see him stick around for years on end which is something he never does, we see him age which is interesting because that's something we don't see in any of the Doctors they all change into varied ages but never stick around long enough for the long haul of it's course. But at the same time it was also really sad, because it presented a vunerablity showing that not just is the end for Doctor 11 near but then enevitable fact that the Doctor won't be around forever.



    Facing the end seems to be the theme in this episode, despite how long the Doctor defends the planet he won't be around forever, just as after each battle he wins life in Christmas continues to go on, just as life and the universe can go on without him. Also the planet itself won't be Christmas forever as we know it eventually becomes Trensalor the time traveler graveyard, so it's last Christmas is inevitable.



    The last minutes with Doctor 11 were heartwrenching, as Clara and us final see Doctor 11 an old man. I'll admit some the monologue he delivers to Clara in that state really put tears in my eyes because I knew what he said was the enevatable truth for not just him but all of us. He of course makes one final stand toward the invaders, still chalanging them despite the state he's in. I'll admit it really made me worried for his life, at that point I couldn't be sure of anything due to the states he's in what else could he do, even he knows that. But then of course the time lords from either what Clara say or what the Doctor has done for them then closes but then reopens in another location briefly to give the Doctor the regeneration energy he needs not just to regenerate but to do what has to be done.



    I thought it was a touching moment because it signifiyed the Doctor has been redeemed by his home planet Galifry but also he's been given more time. And it was just an epic as we see the Doctor just blasting the hell out of all the hostle alien species from the Daleks, Cybermen, fleets/armadas of ships, the Dalek mother ships you name it as if he had the power of God, but it also signifiyed that Doctor 11 is going to go out in a blaze of glory, which he does as he's saved Christmas and Galifry.



    Then it comes down to the final minutes of Doctor 11 as we see him the age we known him for once more, but we also see him beginning to change. And of course as he is changing he and both of us get to see Amy Pond once more for the last time, just seeing her again and what she says to him really made me break down and cry. Because it not just signified that Doctor 11 time/life was truly ending but that Amy herself along with Rory and River (wish they also made cameos but oh well) were gone, I always loved the dynamic they had because it was something the Doctor never really had a family. So it was also a bit touching because in a way Doctor 11 is finally going to join his family. Then of course once we see that bow tie drop to the floor, I knew Doctor 11 was gone.



    The last thing Clara said at the end really broke my heart, "Please don't change" That's the same feeling I have about each of them. Farwell Doctor 11 and farewell Matt Smith.moreless
  • A Fitting Farewell To My Favorite Doctor...

    10
    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

    6.0
    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

    8.5
    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

    7.5
    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.
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

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  • 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)

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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