Sunday, April 16, 2023

#AtoZChallenge2023: Doctor Who The Two Doctors

The Two Doctors
Fifth Doctor: I'm the Doctor. Who are you?
Tenth Doctor: [amazed at meeting his former self]  Yes you are! You are the Doctor!
Fifth Doctor: Yes I am... I'm the Doctor.
Tenth Doctor: Oh good for you, Doctor! Good for brilliant old you!
Fifth Doctor: Is there something wrong with you?

- The Tenth and Fifth Doctors, Time Crash

Another Sunday Special on the A to Z. Today, I want to cover some other multi-Doctor stories, this time with just Two Doctors.

The Two Doctors

The first one that comes to mind is appropriately titled, The Two Doctors. This was set during the Colin Baker years (originally airing Feb/March 1985) and features the Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) and the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton).  Troughton has always wanted to come back to Doctor Who, but not as the Doctor, but as an alien. He thought it would be fun to play something under so much makeup that no one would know it was him. This was during the John Nathan-Turner years, and JTN wanted to bring back all sorts of old friends and enemies. So it really is no surprise that the Second Doctor and Jaime were brought back.

While the episode itself was not supposed to celebrate anything, like the Three and Five Doctors did, it was the 100th book put out by Doctor Who novel publisher Target. So that is nice. Also, I felt this episode marked a turning point for Colin Baker's Doctor. He became less brash after this moving towards that kinder Doctor he always wanted to play. 

The Two Doctors

Trial of a Time Lord

In the modern Doctor Who era we are used to big surprises, especially when they come to the Doctor (see below), but in the classic series this was something new and unexpected. In a story that would fir in in with New Who well we have The Trial of a Time Lord. Again with Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor and Anothony Aniley as the Master (and doing things that will have an effect on Jodie Whittaker's Doctor and Sacha Dhawan's Master) and another figure, the Valeyard played by Michael Jayston. We learn he is an incarnation of the Doctor between his "12th and last regeneration."  So evil that the Master joins up with the Doctor to defeat him.  We don't see him after this year-long series but he is mentioned a few more times.

Michael Jayston as the Valeyard

Time Crash

This one was a short that appeared on the Season 4 DVD (or maybe Season 3) DVD sets. It was right before the Christmas Special "Voyage of the Damned" and featured the Tenth and Fifth Doctors.

Ok this one is so meta. First off, David Tennant grew up with the Fifth Doctor as his favorite Doctor. Earlier that year David had just met Georgia Moffett and they would get married in 2011. Georgia Moffett is Peter Davidson's (the Fifth Doctor) daughter. Georgia in fact played"Jenny" the Doctor's Daughter in a previous episode called, "The Doctor's Daughter."

Confused? Not surprising. When asked at a convention "what was the strangest thing a fan had ever given him" Peter Davidson replied "Grandchildren."

The episode is fun and pure fluff to be honest, but fun fluff.

Doctor Who Time Crash

Twice Upon a Time

Jumping past the 50th Anniversary special for now.  We get to our next double Doctor story. This one features the Twelfth Doctor, Peter Capaldi, as he is trying to decide if he should regenerate or not, and he meets up with his former self, the First Doctor, now being played by the amazing David Bradley, going through a similar existential crisis. 

Before I say too much about this episode (it is wonderful) I need to say something about David Bradley here. WOW. He is so great as the First Doctor (he has played him since and even played William Hartnell). Yes, yes, this script makes him seem older and more cantankerous than he really was, but it was done to show the differences between 1 and 12 more.

Technically this episode is not a Two Doctor story but rather a Three Doctor one since at the end the Twelfth Doctor does decide to regenerate into the Thirteenth Doctor in the form of Jodie Whittaker. 

Fugitive of the Judoon

Now here is an episode that totally surprised everyone.  The "Fugitive" in this episode is not The Thirteenth Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) but instead a completely unknown and never before seen incarnation from before the First Doctor. This Doctor, called the Fugitive Doctor (play AMAZINGLY by Jo Martin), had her memories wiped via a Chameleon Arch by the Time Lords. 

Look, I'll be honest. I LOVED Jodie Whittaker as the Doctor. I just felt some of the scripts were weak. But Jo Martin? Damn. She lit up and took over every scene she was in. 

My head cannon is this. We know the First Doctor took a TARDIS that was "a museum piece," according to River Song. We know that he was going to steal one, but Clara, in her Impossible Girl incarnation, directed him to a different one.  That TARDIS, old with a broken Chameleon Circuit was brand new when The Fugitive Doctor used it (it looks new in the above clip). It was her TARDIS then and when the Time Lords wiped her memories and made her into the "First Doctor" that TARDIS sat there and waited until the Doctor decided to run again. Like the First Doctor she even calls it her "ship."

I want more Jo Martin and her Doctor. I want to know what her actions were to give us the Doctor we know today. 

The War Doctor in The Name of the Doctor

Ah. There is so much to unpack here. This one will need its own post.

A to Z of Doctor Who

All images are used with permission from the BBC and are copyrighted 2023 by the BBC.


PT Dilloway said...

That's a lot of doctors. That is a weird coincidence--if it's a coincidence--that the Tenth Doctor married the Fifth Doctor's daughter.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

@PT Dilloway, In a further bit of confusion, Georgia Moffet went to school with Colin Baker's (the Sixth Doctor) daughters. She one said that she thought everyone's dad got to play the Doctor at some point.