Who Mysteries: Doctor Who?

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Guest contributor, Caleb Howells takes a closer look at the biggest Doctor Who mystery of them all.

The first question. The oldest question in the universe. Hidden in plain sight. Would you like to know what it is? If you do (and you somehow managed to miss the series 6 finale) then I shall tell you. It is… “Doctor who?” Yes, that’s right; it’s the title of the show. Reasonably obvious, really. So, I shall be doing some theorising.

The Question

Firstly, what exactly does that question mean? The obvious answer, and the one I thought at first and still do, is that it’s simply his name. The name that has not been spoken in the entire history of the show (although was kind of played with in classic serial The Armageddon Factor, when his nickname at the Academy was revealed as Theta Sigma).

It’s possible, and very likely in fact, that there is something very special about that Doctor’s real name (and not just the fact that nobody knows it). Something universe threatening, perhaps. In fact, in The Girl In The Fireplace, Madame de Pompadour says that his name is “more than just a secret, isn’t it?”

But another possibility is that it isn’t just his name. Someone once said that the Doctor’s actual name doesn’t make logical sense as the answer to the question, “Doctor who?” “The Doctor” is just his alias. It’s not like it’s the beginning of his name. But actually, that person is wrong! It does make logical sense; at least mostly. For instance, “Doctor Smith.” Smith would be the person’s last name, so that would make sense as that’s part of the person’s name. But it might not be that literal to the question. It could simply be his name, instead of worrying about technicalities, such as, what part of the name properly answers the question.

Trenzalore and the fall

Secondly, what’s the deal with the Fields of Trenzalore? I mean, what are they? Are they literal fields? Knowing Steven Moffat, it’s very possible that they aren’t. Trenzalore is probably a big ball of wibbly wobbly, time wimey… stuff. And the fields will clearly be many strands of the ball entwined together to create “fields” of wibbly wobbly, time wimeyness. I’m joking, of course.

Another thing to ask on the subject of Trenzalore is, what is meant by “the fall of the eleventh?” Most people presume that it is talking about when the Eleventh Doctor regenerates. Personally, I think that’s most likely the case. There’s nothing else in Doctor Who to do with the number 11 that I can think of. But it’s still a possibility that it’s actually talking about something else entirely, though I doubt it.

And what exactly does the prophecy mean by “on the fall of the eleventh, when no living creature may speak falsely or fail to answer…”? I took that to mean that for some reason, it will be because of the fall of the eleventh, whatever that may be, that no living creature may speak falsely or fail to answer. And if so, then why would the regeneration of the Eleventh Doctor mean that no one can tell a lie or not answer? There must be something very special about his regeneration. Of course, that’s presuming that both of my earlier presumptions are correct. But maybe it means something else.

The name?

And one last thing you might be asking yourself, “Will they tell us his name?” I think not. In fact, I’m 99.9% sure that they won’t. If they do, I will eat my boater. I’d eat my fez, if I had one.

Anyway, those are some of my thoughts on the matter. And there are SO many unanswered questions! But hopefully we will get the answers to all these soon enough. Hopefully. And I’d rather get them in series 7 than the 50th Anniversary, but Moffat might have actually been planning this all for the epic special that he surely has planned for the 50th. We’ll just have to wait and see…