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Smith on 50th Classic Doctor Criticisms

no-classics-no-50th-fiveishMatt Smith has responded to criticisms that more Classic era Doctors were not called back for The Day of the Doctor.

At the Calgary Expo he said: “It was such a difficult thing to get everyone in it and I think Steven did a really good job. They got Tom Baker in!

He adds: “I think there’s always an argument to say ‘get as many Doctors in as possible’ but I also think practically there are constraints. I was pleased to get Tom Baker, David Tennant and have John Hurt.

However, Smith admits that he was a bit disappointed Christopher Eccleston didn’t return, although he remains hopeful it’ll happen one day: “It would have been nice to get Chris Eccleston. I love Chris’ Doctor and I think he’s great. Maybe one day.”

Step back in time...

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141 comments
CJPinkston
CJPinkston

Ok all of you, Moffat/50th haters. Yes it would've been nice to have 5-8 in the special, but look at what happened and really watch the story. That last ditch effort to save Gallifrey,  the on screen doctor's tell the Time Lords he's been preparing this his whole life ( why would you bring in time displaced versions of these Doctor'sala Time Crash Style?). And Tom Baker showing up was kinda like his make up for his one time refusal to show up for the 25th. STOP HATING ON THE WAY MOFFAT iS RUNNING THE SHOW. If all you can do is complain about someone tries to create new stories for an amazing show that gets better everytime, either stop watching or write your own story and attempt to send it in and see if it measures up to what Moffat and the other storywriters have done. If you have all of this disdain for what he's done, prove you're better. So far all you guys do is complain so I guess you aren't creative enough to write a story great enough to make Moffat and his staff rethink how they write their stories for the show.

PERTWEE FOREVER
PERTWEE FOREVER

Personally I think that's crap. It's always Tom Baker the others should have been there it's just rude.

Player2isDead
Player2isDead

Personally I think the only real flaw in TDotDis that the "saving Gallifrey" climax was the perfect excuse to bring in the classic Doctors, but the opportunity was squandered. Just give them one or two lines they can do in a recording booth and place it over the stock footage like they already did. During the lead-up to the special the classic Doctors made it very obvious they wanted to be in the special a lot, and I think they would have been satisfied even with a one or two line cameo. I doubt that they'd ask for much money to do that much. It would have satisfied them, shut the fans up, and made the special feel like a more complete celebration of fifty years. This was probably their last chance to be involved in the TV series considering they're getting on it the years, so good job screwing that up, Moffat.

JoehWh0
JoehWh0

They could've had Peter, Colin and Sylvester playing different people, as a sort of 'joke', right? They could've played UNIT scientists or whoever. ( I've missed out Paul b/c NOTD)


VortexDan
VortexDan

John Hurt doesn't count. It was just Moffat sticking his face in canon so that whenever we discuss the history of Doctor Who HIS ego shaped it and made it what it is

StephenCoppins
StephenCoppins

Technically we didn't get the Fourth Doctor in The Day of the Doctor, we potentially got the 25th+ Doctor (assuming he has retired as the Curator in his final incarnation, wether that be the end of his second batch of 12 regenerations, or a future extended batch of regenerations).



In a mere fit of fancy and wild speculation, I wonder if the Watcher (Logopolis) was the 24th Doctor, revisiting his old favourite face, before his former self regenerated into his 5th incarnation, so he could copy the face properly, before regenerating himself and retiring as the Curator of the Under Gallery in the 1980s?  :p

JailBanksters
JailBanksters

Something different

Todays Doctor and a  Future Doctor never seen before.

Steppenwolf1
Steppenwolf1

I liked how they did it, although I would have preferred a modern remake of 'the dark dimension' as another anniversary special too. that way, both old and new series fans could be sated. yes, we had the Fiveish Doctors, which was amazing, but we wanted the 5,6, and 7s characters, not just the actors.  It annoyed me that they only used Tom Baker..... Just imagine if the entire gallery is run by Doctors!

Tom Baker is the Curator. Peter Davison is the Gardener. Colin Baker is the Security Guard. Sylvester McCoy is the Gift-Shop owner.

It doesn't get  much better than that!

TheRiseOfTheTwelfth
TheRiseOfTheTwelfth

I love how, despite Chris Eccleston's refusal to be in the 50th and his desire to perhaps distance himself from the show, Matt still acknowledges him as a great Doctor. I totally emphathise with that, never mind what everyone says about him being grumpy about not wanting to return, he was still a fantastic Doctor and still is a brilliant actor. 

ilyootha is in the Divergent Universe
ilyootha is in the Divergent Universe

I never understood all those complaints. It's not like the classic Doctors are being denied as an important part of the show's history or something, The Day of the Doctor is just an episode, it's not the whole anniversary. It didn't include the classic Doctors (actually it did, but whatever), but so what? The celebration of the 50th anniversary is not limited to just that, it also includes The Five(ish) Doctors - Reboot and The Night of the Doctor. And that's only what was done by or with the help of Moffat/BBC, there'll be more if you include stuff like The Light at the End, Prisoners of Time, etc.

Oncoming_Badger
Oncoming_Badger

I'm sorry, but that's the reason there is still distance between me and the 50th. I sometimes ask myself why do I get so mad when people rave about day of the doctor? It's such a good episode! But I remember that, that was the chance to bring back 4-8 it honestly wouldn't have been as hard as moff said and we missed that chance and there's a part of me that will never get over that.

krawhitham
krawhitham

They should have made the scene with Tom Baker with each of the old doctors and included the other takes on the blu ray disc, Heck with Blu Ray they could have a random version play each time you watch the episode

Hibernus
Hibernus

I wonder if by this he means to say other Doctors were considered at some point but couldn't appear due to constraints beyond the scope of the storyline, and beyond Chris Eccleston saying no thanks.

Mercy Reborn2
Mercy Reborn2

I think it was fine the way it was, and we got to see a tiny bit of thirteen doctors that is enough and the bit with Tom Baker was fantastic ,the cinema I was in the audience were awestruck for a second then they started clapping and cheering. I dont think Day was perfect but it gave proper homage to the past

Warisfiller
Warisfiller

DOTD was basically giving everyone involved with Nu-Who to pat themselves on the back about how much better they believe they've made the show whilst completely ignoring what came before. Big Finish are the ones keeping the spirit of Classic Who alive and have been doing so since before Nu-Who ever emerged.


Moffat couldn't be bothered asking the classic Doctors back(except Paul and that was only because he wanted to write his final lines) so The Light at the End saved the anniversary by giving us a special that actually celebrates the 50thth anniversary of Doctor Who rather than just the 8th anniversary of NuWho

Gallifreygreg
Gallifreygreg

With the McGann minisode and Tom's spoiler that he was in it, I think I went into the episode with too high an expectation. I didn't think that Moffat would be so unfair as to bring one classic Doctor back but snub the others - so when he did the disappointment was huge, especially as Tom wasn't my Doctor, Colin and Sylvester were.

I do think there was the opportunity to bring them back with original audio dialogue, I felt the use of archive footage in the scene when they all come together was very poorly done - I know that the line the seventh Doctor uses is actually said to Ace from part one of Battlefield and not to any war council.

An expanded scene with original audio dialogue over archive footage/doubles would have been far better.

Gallifreygreg
Gallifreygreg

Couldn't have put it better - the scene just looked cheap and tacky. It would not have been hard to get some original audio in there - they could've recorded it at Big Finish to save a bit of time.

Rani Nose
Rani Nose

@JoehWh0  Inviting your former lead back to play a lesser role is disrespectful to the actor.  Peter, Colin and Sylvester were the Doctor back in their day.  Were they to return they would return as the Doctor, or some possible Doctor-like variant like Tom Baker's curator.  

Player2isDead
Player2isDead

@VortexDan  You realize that John Hurt was a backup plan, right? Moffat wrote two versions of Day of the Doctor, one for if Christopher Eccleston came back, one for if he didn't. Obviously Chris didn't come back and Moffat didn't have time to completely write the script so he just gave the part Chris would have played to Hurt. If you want someone to blame for the regeneration numbering and the resolution of the regeneration limit, blame Eccleston for forcing Moffat to do what he did.

Doctor What
Doctor What

@VortexDan So, if I understand your words, any writer who tries to pen an original story, trying to deliver to the fans expectations, is just making himself important? That means they should just stick to rewrite the same kind of stories we have already seen, because any time a writer is coming up with something different, he is just trying to be clever.

Nonsense. Moffat's job is creative, and in order to be creative, one has to have the wits to expose his ego on the sunlight. You want to talk about ego? It was the ego of Sydney Newman who gave birth to the show in the first place, the ego of Verity Lambert converted an idea in paper into a TV show, the ego of William Hartnell defined the essence of the Doctor, the ego of Delia Derbyshire made one of the most sensational tunes in TV history, the ego of Terry Nation created the most iconic foe ever... and on and on it goes, up to the ego of RTD who rescued an old TV show and decided that the Doctor destroyed his own planet, and the ego of Moffat, who has made some sensational stories along with some greatly controversial mess. So yes, there's a lot of egos involved, and without them, we wouldn't have not only this show, but any work of art, be it pictorical, musical, written word, etc.

You don't like Moffat's work? Good, you have the right to, but please, don't say ridiculous things about egos. Of course Moffat's face is sticked to DW canon (though DW canon is one of the most loose canons ever), he's the showrunner, so he decides where the show is going, as have done all his predecessors in the job. And by the way, if you use your brain for a split second, you'll realize that John Hurt (who was one of the best things in the 50th) had to be included because of Chris Eccleston refusing to come back, it is evident that the part was written for the 9th Doctor. And don't tell me that it could have been the 8th Doctor, because that's what would have been against canon, no one would believe the 8th Doctor could have pushed the big red button.

Malohkeh
Malohkeh

@VortexDan His EGO? This is the man who's constantly making self-deprecating jokes, always naming other writer's episodes as his favorites... 

How on earth do you get the impression that Moffat is even remotely egotistical?

ilyootha is in the Divergent Universe
ilyootha is in the Divergent Universe

@VortexDanSame can be said about the creations of Robert Holmes, Russel T Davies or any other writer/showrunner who ever worked on the show. How dare these egocentric bastards use their ideas to shape the history of the show!


Gallifreygreg
Gallifreygreg

There was huge potential for drama with a Doctor on his last life, living without a regeneration safety net, Moffat has squandered that opportunity with his choices of late.

Plus, where was the Valeyard between Tennant and Smith, or do we need to wait until the twelfth regeneration of this new cycle?

robohappy
robohappy

@VortexDan  Plus he was the one who "solved" the 13 regenerations issue, and it suuuucked. I liked Moffat before the 50th (The Silence is one of my favorite Who monsters), I really did, but Moffat's ego screwed up the 50th, regeneration numbering, and the 13 regenerations issue! How can people defend Moffat after this!!!!



Gallifreygreg
Gallifreygreg

The Light at the End was fantastic, but Doctor Who is first and foremost a TV show, and not even the brilliant 5ish Doctors made up for them not featuring in the story. Peter, Colin and Sylv deserved better than archive footage and their face superimposed on a body double (Or however it was they made that picture with them all standing together),

andyot7777
andyot7777

@Oncoming_Badger  It would have been horribly oversaturated and 3/4s the episode would have involved nothing but setting up all of the Doctors meeting and trying to give them all sufficient screen time to warrant them being there. You also have to remember that bringing back people requires TONS of money because none of them would have done it for free. If you honestly think it's that easy, then I don't know what to say, you're wrong. It's hell trying to organise and pay for TWO Doctors, nevermind 3 or more.

Planet of the Deaf
Planet of the Deaf

@krawhitham But then as the line went,

And in years to come, you might find yourself revisiting a few. But just the old favourites, eh?

Which makes sense, coming back as the Curator, and choosing an old favourite, rather than recycling every Doctor

Planet of the Deaf
Planet of the Deaf

@Warisfiller Erm, were you out of the room when Tom Baker appeared on screen?

Plus there was

The all 13 scene showing clips of ALL the Doctors, and the ending showing them all standing together

The reference to the Doctor having had b with UNIT, Kate the Brigadier's daughter, and Osgood (daughter of Pertwee era Osgood?)

Starting with the original titles and Coal Hill school

Bringing back the Zygons a Classic Monster

5,6 and 7 all appeared in the brilliant Five ish, so had their moment as well


parrot999
parrot999

Are you kidding me? There were references left and right to the classic series, and the story's monster was not only directly from the classic series, and relatively unchanged in design, but also one of the most requested monsters to make a return since their original story...

I feel it embraced both old and new who... Which is good, because I prefer the old series in a lot of ways...

stig oien
stig oien

@Gallifreygreg I like the episode as a whole. I loved John Hurt's Doctor and it was a good addition when we couldn't have Christopher Eccleston in it.

But I do agree with you that recording new audio for the war council scene would have improved it a lot. At least recorded for the four youngest of the classic Doctors.

A much more important point is that we DID get an anniversary episode. It was in addition to the series and it was close to feature lenght. I am not saying "be thankful for what you got" just becase you got it, but an alternative could have been that we never got an anniversary episode. BBC could have said: you got half a series and a Christmas special, stop your nagging.

Anyway: I view "The Name of the Doctor" as much as a 50th celebration as "Day" itself. The GI and Clara slipping into the timestream; we got a lot of "classic" going on. Which I am personally very thankful for. Sat watching "Name" as the excited little fanboy I am.

ilyootha is in the Divergent Universe
ilyootha is in the Divergent Universe

@GallifreygregWe don't really know how the Valeyard came into existence. The only thing we know from the show is that according to the Master, the Valeyard is the amalgamation of the Doctor's dark side somewhere between his twelfth and final incarnations (it's likely that he didn't mean the 12th and 13th incarnations literally here, but rather the real next-to-last and last incarnations, whatever their numbers are).

Granted, Big Finish has provided some hints about the Valeyard's origins in the recent subscriber-free special. I haven't listened to that one yet, but from what I've read about it (spoilers ahead!), it seems that there the Valeyard suggests that he was created during the last Doctor's experiments that he was performing in the last years of his life on the planet Etarho in order to find a way to break the regenerations limit, and it's also implied that this could have been a lie.

Perhaps not everything was a lie, and Etarho was actually Trenzalore, where the Eleventh, then-supposedly-last Doctor was secretly trying to cheat death between fixing barns and fighting Cybermen. Or perhaps he sneaked out in his TARDIS to Etarho at some point. Or perhaps the real last Doctor will still come to Etarho when he runs out of the new regeneration cycle. Or perhaps the timeline where the last Doctor comes to Etarho was rewritten at some point, much like the events of TNOTD. Or perhaps all of this was indeed a lie, and the origins of the Valeyard are completely different - maybe he is an echo of the GI or a result of its interference with the Doctor's timestream in TNOTD, or maybe he is the next-to-last Doctor's "Watcher" that went rogue, or maybe he is simply the meta-Crisis Doctor who returned to our universe at some point (laziest theory ever, but still)?.. Who knows... Who... knows...






supermoff
supermoff

@Gallifreygreg  The Valeyard was stated to appear sometime between the Doctor's 12th and final incarnation, so he could still appear at any time. 

robohappy
robohappy

@Gallifreygreg  EXACTLY! Now the fans will have to wait another 12 regenerations to have that kinda drama! Thanks Moffat!

Rani Nose
Rani Nose

@Gallifreygreg Sometimes you have to move on and let go that which didn't work.  The Valeyard was in what many consider the worst Doctor Who story.  Why on Earth, or any other planet, would any showrunner, not just Moffat, want to remind everyone of how terrible the show once was?  The 50th was a celebration of the best of Doctor Who, not the worst.

supermoff
supermoff

@robohappy @VortexDan  We can defend him because he didn't screw up the 50th at all (it won a BAFTA just a few days ago, received critical acclaim, and is loved by the vast majority of fans), he didn't screw up the regeneration numbering at all (for goodness sake it's not exactly rocket science), and the 13 regeneration issue, which is more subjective I admit, was handled with genius in my opinion :) 

tealeaves
tealeaves

@robohappy @VortexDan He had an impossible task, he could never have made a 50th that pleased everybody. He gave us a story that delivered surprises - regardless of what you felt about the War Doctor reveal it was a big revelation for a big special, plenty of nods to the past not to mention Tom Baker!, a story which was personal and game-changing for the Doctor, great comedic moments with some deeper moral questions. In contrast what did he spoil? 

It's been stated the numbers remain the same as the War Doctor rejected the name. Honestly what is the problem? If showrunners never changed the canon then shows would be massively dull. If no one had changed the canon there would be no regeneration in the first place. Moffat has put the show in a position where it can continue for another 13 regenerations even if you don't like the way he did it, surely that has to be a good thing. So how can people defend Moffat after this...quite easily?  

Gallifreygreg
Gallifreygreg

Hang on, they DID set up all the Doctors meeting - then ruined it by simply using clips from old episodes. An expanded version of that scene with audio contributions from the classic Doctors over archive clips, doubles or a combination of the two would've been far better and in no way detrimental to the story.

DoctorRed
DoctorRed

@Planet of the Deaf @Warisfiller  But Tom only appeared for a couple of minutes and David was in about half of the episode. You're saying that it referenced both classic and new Who, which it did, but the new Who vastly outweighed the old Who. The only things that were directly taken from old Who within the story itself were the Zygons, UNIT, the Coal Hill School, and Tom Baker's brief appearance, was makes up about five minutes at most. The vast majority of it was based on new Who when it should have been a celebration of the show as a whole.

Malohkeh
Malohkeh

@robohappy @Rani Nose@GallifreygregThe Valeyard's technically between the twelfth and final incarnations, yeah? Well guess what: he still hasn't reached his final incarnation. The window's just longer now.

supermoff
supermoff

@Gallifreygreg  Well it was RTD who conceived the idea of the metacrisis, so he is equally responsible for "butchering" the regenerations as Moffat, not that either individual did so in any way, shape or form. 

Gallifreygreg
Gallifreygreg

Trial was poorly resolved because of Robert Holmes death and Saward quitting after a fall out with JNT over the ending.

The concept of the Valeyard was not a terrible one (it was written by Robert Holmes, regarded as the best Doctor Who writer ever by many) and neither, for that matter, was the show terrible back then. Like every era it had good stories, average and bad.

And if you'd look again I said where was the Valeyard when Tennant regenerated into Smith - that happened before the 50th, I wasn't suggesting he should have been in Day of the Doctor but in the End of Time/Eleventh Hour going by Moffat's butchering of the regenerations, making Tennant both eleventh and twelfth incarnations and Matt thirteenth.

robohappy
robohappy

@Rani Nose @Gallifreygreg  It would have been interesting if the in his final regeneration, some regeneration split off and created the valeyard, kinda like the meta crisis doctor. The Valeyard could have represented the doctors dark side personified, which could have lead to some very interesting story lines.

Doctor What
Doctor What

@Gallifreygreg I can't understand why so much people is still convinced that the Doctors 4 to 8 could have been in the 50th.

Well, NO, they couldn't be, because they look 30 years older than when they regenerated. And even if the fanboys that we are could forgive this, the average viewer (i.e. 95% of the people who watch the show) would have thinked that putting the old actors in the movie pretending they're still young is totally crap.

Besides, narratively, the more characters, the worst the film, just take a look at some big, very expensive productions like League of Extraordinary Gentlemen or The Avengers, they end up being a mess because it's just impossible to cram a dozen of principal characters in a single, short story, and then give them enough screen time. Of course, we know it works on movies like The Lord of the Rings (don't forget that the full story adds up for nearly 10 hours of movie), or shows like Game of Thrones or Once Upon a Time, but that's because it's a very different format, we have a single, continuing story (or multiple stories interwoven as a big one, like real life), told in a lot of episodes, which allows for hours and hours of character development.

Planet of the Deaf
Planet of the Deaf

@DoctorRed @Planet of the Deaf @Warisfiller  David Tennant had been in the 4 show years earlier. Thus he


Looked roughtly the same

Could fit his costume

Could still ACT his Doctor role, being fresh in his mind.

As a result he was able to play his role, and within his Timestream in the original episodes



Watching The Three Doctors, Troughton is stil believable as his Doctor as it was only 3-4 years after he had left.


Having Classic Doctors come back 20-30 years after they appeared would cause many problems

They look different

Most wouldn't fit their constume

Would be unlikely to be able to play their Doctor seriously on screen. Seeing the 4th Doctor as an old man struggling to walk would make no sense to the show's history. Who could equate Colin now to the snarling Sixth Doctor we saw on screen? 


Fine if you want to make a Children in Need type special, with aged Colin and Nicola etc appearing to whoops from the audience, but hardly a recipe for an exciting episode to inspire a new generation of children