‘Doctor Who’ 50th Anniversary Special Review: A Tale of Epic Proportions

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doctor who 50th anniversary review hurt tennant smith 570x294 Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special Review: A Tale of Epic Proportions

What began with a beautiful look back in An Adventure in Time and Space continued with a tale of the most epic of proportions, in the “The Day of the Doctor.” A story centuries in the making, combining the powers of the Hero, the Warrior and the Doctor to tell the greatest story never known, providing a superb conclusion to a Doctor Who milestone that couldn’t have been more perfect.

In ‘The Day of the Doctor,’ written by Steven Moffat, the fan-favorite storyteller masterfully weaves a complicated – and likely controversial – adventure through the heart of the Time Lord’s darkest moment, bringing together all of the forms of television’s iconic time traveler to provide an unnecessary update to what was thought to be the demise of Gallifrey, and the Doctor’s most defining decision. Unnecessary, yes – but worth it? Absolutely.

The demise of Gallifrey – which has since been revealed to be anything but – is the end result of this anniversary special; however, this is not not its greatest accomplishment. Instead, it’s Moffat’s confidence in his ability as a storyteller which stands out and makes this complex adventure work, as his attention to detail and passion for the franchise shines throughout, wholeheartedly earning its use of such weighty elements from the series’ fast and ever-growing mythology.

doctor who 50th anniversary review tennant smith 570x294 Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Special Review: A Tale of Epic Proportions

With Moffat’s carefully crafted words at disposal, Matt Smith, David Tennant and John Hurt each shine as their own, defined versions of the Doctor, while also tagging enough of the others’ sentences with quirky remarks to remind those watching that, although different, these men are one and the same – different versions with different experiences to add, or forget, as with the case of Matt Smith’s Doctor.

An explanation for the personality of Tennant’s Doctor, too, was surprisingly included, and is a perfect example of how the immense attention to details justifies everything needed to tell this impossible tale. Tennant’s Doctor – the man who regrets – and Smith’s Doctor – the man who forgets – help provide a wonderful bookend to the evolution of a character so defined by a single decision from his past. This allows audiences to believe, albeit momentarily, that the two actors’ unique cadence wasn’t simply birthed in an audition room, but that it was a calculated move to convey the stages of the Doctor as he attempts to cope with the self-inflicted genocide of his entire race.

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Surprises in the storytelling are not the only thing, however; the 50th Anniversary also includes more than enough onscreen surprises which raise the same goose bumps, including, but not limited to: Billie Piper’s Secret Diary of a Call Girl-fueled version of Bad Wolf Rose Tyler and Tom Baker’s magical appearance as the Curator - who also happened to leave Smith’s Doctor with some curious clues about possible returning faces.

As with anything, questions must be asked, and the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary is no different: “Is it worth it?” is likely most common and, perhaps, most important. “The Day of the Doctor” adds a surprisingly happy twist to the Doctor’s darkest moment, and Moffat’s use of a clever time travel twist, to keep the integrity of the former Doctors intact, does little to change the fact that Smith’s Doctor now knows the truth – and for what purpose? Two Better questions may be: If not Moffat, then who? If not now, then when?

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If the modern world of film and television has taught us anything, it’s that the medium deems a franchise is only as important as the money it makes. If it doesn’t make money, it goes away, only to return in another form – perhaps then led by someone who might care about the franchise, but who doesn’t have the ability to project such passions onscreen. Good intentions only go so far in storytelling, and a poor tale told to such a dedicated following is not easily forgotten.

So why not Steven Moffat? If the man who created the terrifying Jekyll because of his love of ‘The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde’ – who created the imaginative Sherlock (with An Adventure in Space and Time writer Mark Gatiss) because of his love of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s iconic detective tales – who, in 2006, wrote a short story for a Doctor Who magazine which he then turned into the fan-favorite episode “Blink” – wants to take on a Time War tale which he, himself, said was too impossible of a feat, why not let him?

Why, indeed. Perhaps the answer to all this, after seeing ‘The Day of the Doctor,’ is: because he can, completely and passionately.


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Doctor Who returns in December for the Doctor Who Christmas Special – Matt Smith’s final appearance as the Doctor.

Follow Anthony Ocasio on Twitter @anthonyocasio
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  1. Fantastic 50th!! Me and the wife both loved it. We watched the 3D simulcast in the theater and it was amazing.

    Since I don’t see a star rating on your review I’ll help you out:

    Five stars

    Can’t discuss without, “SPOILERS!”

  2. Typical Moffatt episode: A whole bunch of nothing thrown into a blender and splattered on screen. And he broke the key rule of this show where time travel is concerned: If ANYTHING can be undone then NOTHING ever matters. Horrible idea to change the past and Disney-fy the Doctor’s actions with the Time War. “Oh the children…” Please.

    • Redefined does not equate undone. Matt Smith goes out with a bang in one of the very best episodes of his run.

    • I didn’t get why people hated Moffat before. I didn’t like him much, but still. I know the show has been going downhill since series 6– I HATED Asylum of the Daleks and The Angels Take Manhattan. The statue of liberty? Seriously? Conversions? FORGETTING WHO HE IS!?!?!

      After this episode, however… HE RUINED THE TENTH DOCTOR! HE TURNED THE TIME WAR INTO A JOKE!! I was stoked about Tennant returning for the 50th, more than anyone I know. But he was NOTHING like in RTD’s era. Maybe he was just out of practice, but far more likely it was just the bad writing. ‘Cos when you think about it, there were no opportunities for him to actually BE good. His lines were absolutley horrid compared to what he used to have and yet he still made them tolerable.

      Matt Smith was like always, but then he’s always had the same writer. He got all the decent lines, and did them well. Rose was a massive disappointment. It wasn’t even her, and all Ten did was say a single line, which was quickly cast aside. I think the children part had the only lines with any depth, and even that was short and shallow.

      Moffat could have gone deeper there, make it like Pompeii, but no, instead they all join forces and save the world! Hooray, the last bit of emotional depth The Doctor had left is gone. Excuse me now, I have to go rewatch the old episodes and think about the good old days when things were three-dimensional and evoked more feelings than apathy.

      • I dont get it. Yes, the episode changed things. Really. Genuinely changed things. But considering that none of the doctors remember that Gallifrey was saved until matt smith…they did go through with the destruction in their minds. This is totally respectful of the earlier stories, it takes nothing away from them. And I think this is a good thing..saving a billion children…a good thing…finding a way to end a war with a solution other than “i’ll kill them all”…is a good8 thing..
        Tennent was brilliant(“It was the Horse! I’m gonna be King!), Hurt was cool and Matt Smith was exceptional…I thought the way the showed Rose was great cuz i really did not want them to undo the ending that rose got…a glimpse of Capaldi…archive footage scene was pretty good too…

        This was an episode not about the bleakness in life..and acceptance of past faults. He’s a time traveler. If he doesn’t change history…who does..? And this has given the show such a great new direction…Towards Gallifrey !!

        • ‘Nuff said.

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4bijbF3gkNk

        Because if you hated Moffat before you’re not going to change your mind after a great episode, and you’re obviously not going to be fair when judging his work, and you’re not going to be nitpicking absolutely everything looking for something to complain, and you’re absolutely not going to ignore the great interaction between the three Doctors, you’re not going to ignore the pretty f’ing good lines he had, or the way the time war and the lives lost impacted the lifes of the three doctors, or the fact that he was able to understand and forgive his errors from the past, or the fact that he actually did something clever. Yeah, you’re going to be fair and not ignore all those problems.

        This goes to all of those who hated the episode, because if I’ve noticed something is that those who make irrational comments about the current series (DUR DIS SUCKS HOW DO WE EXPECT THAT ALIENS WOULD DO THAT IS STUPID I HATE IT IS CRAP I KILL MYSELF THE SHOW IS s***) are the ones who mindlessly hate Moffat. Because…because I don’t know why, maybe they just need someone to hate or they can’t get it up.

        • How do you know what aliens do? It takes a great deal of imagination and creativity to appreciate the fun, exciting, action-filled premiere of Doctor Who.

        • @Alex


          I’ve hated the shows with Smith as the lead and Moffatt as lead writer because they just never entertained me. I’m not going to subject myself to something I’m not enjoying just to appease people like you who clearly were still on board with the show, just like my mother did other things around the house while I watched Doctor Who in the 80s because she enjoyed the show herself until Sylvester McCoy became the Doctor (she still doesn’t like him either, as she commented when McCoy appeared on an episode of a game show recently).

          People ARE allowed to like and dislike things.

          • dazz, you sum up what the show is about. if you like the change stay on board. if you don’t then don’t subject yourself to it.

            simple as that.

        • I disagree, i went into the episode with glee and exitment even though i dont like the way moffat have been taking the series,the actig was great, but its how he always writes his endings. Up until they decided to save gallifrey it was a fantastic episode. Its his obsession to have a good “fairytale” ending where everyone is happy that draggs the series down.

          • i think the decision to save gallifrey was a brilliant move. it allows the doctor to fullfill a promise he made in the very first episode, and it gives a proper resoloution to the lingering shadow of the time war that the series has had all this time.

    • If I were a Time Lord, I’d leave my Tardis door open and walk away from it too so everyone could look inside. Since when can a companion snap their finger and close the Tardis door? It was always emphasized that no-one should cross their own timeline. I know they said that they would not remember it but Smith will. I miss the intelligent writing of RTD. The reason I am still going to watch? Moffat does have good stories every once in a while that I do like.

    • Shoot a kid in the face and think how would you feel. Go ahead. Do it. I’ll wait.

  3. That was an awesome episode. Definitely one of Moffats best in years.

    Did anyone else check out the parody the five(ish) doctors? that was also really good. loved all the cameos in it.

    • ‘Five(ish) Doctors’ just came out of nowhere, right? I can’t believe Barrowman showed up for that. So goofy and camp (and kind of brutally honest) – just great!

  4. CAPALDI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. This is the first dr who episode ive ever watched, it was good.

    • exactly this episode was the first one i ever saw and now i know what all the hype is about

  6. Still bummed about there being not Eccelston cameo. When John Hurt was regenerating I was like Holy sh*t, they’re gonna show Eccelston but nope. But it was a great episode. And I’m a newbie to this franchise, I just got into Doctor Who about a month ago and watched everything from Eccelston onward.

    • during the one part u see eccelston, but thats from a previous episode probably.

      • Oh yeah – it’s from the season 1 (2005) finale, “The Parting of the Ways.”

        • Damn, I love how Ant just laid it out, season this episode that. Nice.

    • Eccelston not appearing is from his own hatred of the BBC politics and treatment of staff. Which may have and probably has changed since. However, thats the reason he left and the reason he would have declined any involvement so really it’s unfair to hold that against the special which did a great job of integrating him despite him not actually being there.

      • I know, I’m just a big fan of him and the Ninth Doctor. I just find it hard to believe that he wouldn’t show up for at least a quick cameo of him regenerating and maybe saying “Fantastic!” I was just holding onto hope, I don’t hold it against the special. I just think he’s the most underrated Doctor.

      • They really could have used one extra second during Hurt’s regeneration. I’m surprised they didn’t just match up more footage of Eccelston’s face for that moment.

        • For sure, a quick “Fantastic” would have been fantastic, I am surprised that the BBC and Eccelston couldn’t just move past their problems for the betterment of the special. Because really he was the result of the Time War, he was just so dark. The Episode ‘Dalek’ is great evidence of this, where you see The Doctor just fueled by hate. I think an extra second of hurts regeneration would have been nice too – especially since the episode is the ultimate fan service. It might have been a bit weird though, because they would have used the footage taken of his regeneration (9-10) for that brief moment, so for both to be the same could look a bit cheap and nasty to viewers who don’t know about the behind the scenes troubles.

          • If Russell T Davis had returned, I think he might have cameoed since he’d worked with Davis before on the brilliant ITV show Second Coming from the late 90s about a man born in Manchester who realises he’s the second coming of Christ and reveals it to the world at Old Trafford.

            Mark Benton (great as always) played Satan in that 2 episode show.

        • I think they did buddy. Hurt’s face did change to more Ecclestone during the regeneration but only for a brief glimpse. Rewatch it and pause just before the end of his regeneration :)

        • Yeah we only saw Eccelston’s eyes for a moment during John Hurt’s regen. His ears popping out would have been more definitive.

          Also wanted to mention that funny pun during the mini-sode with Paul McGann:

          When the Sisterhood of Karn were about to hand over the War Doctor potion to Number 8…… He says, “Is it going to ‘HURT?’….” And the woman says, “Yes.” Then D8 says…. “Good!”

          Then voilá! We get John Hurt!

    • if you look closely during the regeneration, you can see Eccelston’s eyes. not what I was hoping for, but it still made me squeal. actually, a lot of stuff in this episode made me squeal with delight…

  7. Love it! For god’s sake, it was amazing, and the cameo of Baker was something i really didn’t expect. The adventure continues, now the Doctor has a goal.

    Too bad that he first has to visit Trenzalore in december.

  8. I…I’m so conflicted…I loved it…but I’m pissed now because the truth of the matter is everything we knew is a lie…I don’t like it, but it was so epic I am of…Two Unfortunate Minds….

    • It’s not a lie if nobody, not even the Doctor himself, knew it wasn’t the truth until now.

  9. I love the idea hinted at that in the final days of his last regeneration, the Doctor chooses to settle down and watch over London and the legacy items stored there as the Curator.

    I also love the (strong) hint that Osgood may in fact be the “Curator’s” companion. Please note that not only is she wearing the 4th doctor’s scarf but she actually acts like a “companion” throughout the episode, solving puzzles, confronting monsters and all the while saying “please Doctor save us” or “the Doctor will save me” whenever the trouble seems too threatening.

    The idea that the “Doctor/Curator” still has a companion of sorts even when he has “retired” from actively adventuring is just too perfect a fit with the character.

  10. My only problem is that they focused sooooooooo much on Tennant’s regretful portrayal and didn’t show really any of the swagger that he brought to the role. Seeing him fail with identifying the Zygons was hilarious, but was disingenuous to the brilliance of David’s incarnation of the Doctor. It seemed like they were toning down his big personality in an attempt to defer all quirkiness to Matt Smith.

    Other than that slight criticism, I loved the episode.

    • Agreed. I enjoyed the Episode. But I think it is undeniable that Tennant’s Doctor would have outshone Smith’s had the writing been more true to their incarnations and the way they play them. I don’t hate Matt Smith. I have even enjoyed him a few times since Tennant (my Doctor) left. But it will be far easier to let Smith go and accept Capaldi than it was for me to accept Smith.

      It was good to see the real Doctor 1 more time.

  11. t was a whole bunch of meh. It was better than the 25th anniversary show Silver Nemesis

    The Five Doctors (20th) and The Three Doctors (10th) were better anniversary shows

    The War Doctor’s Tardis Control Room looks much better than McGann’s or any of the other new Doctor’s

    As they just dumped Gallifrey into lost in space land, they could potentially integrate an E-Space story by dropping Gallifrey into E-Space and Romana finding it.

    As the Doctor didn’t use the galaxy cluster destroyer, there should now be a large number of left over Daleks that weren’t part of the fleet attacking Gallifrey, because they were attacking other things… making a very big hash of continuity (but it’s Doctor Who, so who cares about continuity?)

    • It’s funny talking about continuity concerning the Daleks. How often were they completely killed off and how often did they return? All the doctors had to fight them time and again – as the Cybermen – as the Master. They have always been kept ‘alive’ for the syndicate to toy with.
      Same amusing thing is that people feel like everything they knew has been rehashed, but RTD had come up with the time war and made us believe Gallifrey was no more, where it was still playing a big role until D9. So that was already a major detour of the mythology. I think it is brilliant to make it return, without undoing everything since D9. Nobody complained when D11 was able to reboot the universe, so that the doctor could beoome more anonymous again.
      The longevity of the series is because of these moments of briliant story telling and, let’s not forget, us fans who keep believing/suspending disbelief, all for the good of opening up new realms, new challenges, new stories.
      Oh, and some plots and cameos were there just for us – and we did ask for them, ha ha ha.

      • “Nobody complained when D11 was able to reboot the universe, so that the doctor could beoome more anonymous again.”

        Which Moffat seems to have forgotten in the case of UNIT.

        • Didn’t the reboot of the Universe occur in the 1996 timeframe? That allowed plenty of time for UNIT to relearn about the Doctor until present day.

  12. Anyone see the new doctor? Showed his eyes when all the doctors came around gallifrey. Kinda of a neat cameo.

  13. I thought it was a pretty epic final episode… Yes, it changed everything. But…I think that’s a good thing. Its a huge development. The doctor is going to Gallifrey… Now, no one would have seen that coming. Its such a huge opportunity…soo many stories to tell. The episode itself was brilliant.

  14. I did think it was quite a good episode though I believe the length of the episode helped a lot as well.
    Ever since they ‘Americanised’ it with 45minute episodes has kind of ruined the show.
    Too much of a rush through episodes to make the shortened length.
    The opening 10minutes was great, with the time war though I would have preferred the episode to be based around this setting and not include the subplot of the Zygons.
    In all the episode was enjoyable though it shat on the mythos of Dr Who.
    And was the War Dr another reincarnation or a continuation of Mcgann??
    I couldn’t really work it out from watching the ‘short prequel’

    • John Hurt’s Doctor is the regeneration between McGann and Ecclestone.

  15. Personally I don’t see where these negative reviews are coming from in this comment section, and that is coming from some one who posts alot of “I am pissed off” comments.

    I thought it was amazing and it gave the future episodes what the last series was lacking in. Motivation. A place to go and a reason for going. The reason why series 7 was a disappointment was simply because there was no reason. The doctor just floated around aimlessly until we finally got to see what was up with Clara. Now that the doctor learn he didn’t do what he think he did to gallifrey, he has that drive for future episodes!

  16. You know, this could be the eportunity to finally see the Skaro Degradations, the Horde of Travesties, the Nightmare Child, the Could-Have-Been King with his army of Meanwhiles and Never-Weres, romana, susan, all of them now have a chance to come back.

    • not to mention that the master is on gallifrey as far we know, so he can come back now.

    • They even cast new Susan, Ian, Barbara, First Doctor, Dodo, etc, so they could have made them appear.

  17. Haha…they totally ruined continuity by changing the whole Time Lords gone mad with power into another hard decision where it’s his home world or the entire universe but I don’t care cause I like it better this way and I love the episode.

    Wished Eccelston return for a quick cameo but whatever. So, is that really the 4th Doctor since Baker is in his costume, aside from the scarf and the hat. Him being old can be explain in same manner that the 5th was older in the children in need minisode.

    • It was explained, he told him about revisiting some old faces in the future. Meaning that in a future regeneration he is going to be fourth again.

      • That wasn’t very clear but it’s very cool anyway. And the 4th being the one retired pretty much a homage to Adam Douglas’ scrapped story in which the Doctor retires.

        • D4 showing up was pure fan service, and I don’t think we’ll get a satisfying answer regarding his appearance in the 50th as a museum “curator”……. But you know what? I don’t care. It was great! When Tom Baker was onscreen I was crying like a baby.

          • D4 didn’t appear, it’d be like when Romana regenerated, and she regenerated into Princess Astra. The Curator is just someone that looks like the 4th, just as Romana looks like Astra. And 13th looks like the guy the Doctor saved from Pompeii. And 6th looks like another Gallifreyan, the Citadel Guard Captain. And the War Doctor looks like the guy from Alien (something already known to be an in-story existing movie)

  18. Not the best, but entertaining enough for a Saturday Night in.

    Placing Gallifrey in pocket universe is a plot contrivance that allows for The Doctor’s regenerations to be reset by a grateful High Council (as they did with the Master in exchange for his help during the Time War). He will be in his 13th and last regeneration with Capaldi after all.

    Just curious, what happened to Master and the Numpty High Council when they were thrown back to Gallifrey at the end of Tennant’s reign as The Doctor in the Special Episode “The End of Time”?

    I thought Tom Bakers cameo as the Curator was cool, perhaps a small portion of each Doctor is forever archived within the U.N.I.T. facility? Billie Piper was wasted somewhat, I felt it didn`t achieve anything. Even Tennent didn`t seem to fit, his appearance seemed forced somehow. Matt Smith got all the best lines, though I think he is still the worst of all the Doctor’s (personal preference, I’ve followed Doctor Who since 65′)

    On another personal note…. I really think they should have let Gallifrey burn!, even if the all pressed the button to share the burden. It was a war and terrible thing happen in wars. It also reduces the Dark Forbiding Doctor into a “lets go back and make everything right” cliche. Sorry, but we need a Dark Messiah to make the character believable. Though his regeneration reset will be snookered (see above for contrived plot point).

    Last gripe, who cast a Short, Dumpy, Welsh, Ginger “Gavin ‘n’ Stacyite” as Queenie?

    • She was dumpy because she was pregnant at the time.

      I wish they got Miranda Richardson to play Elizabeth I again but I guess Blackadder ruined that monarch for everyone because Richardson was just too good and iconic.

      • LOL, Yes! Now she would have made a better Queenie…….

        Queenie (after The Doctor had just snogged the Zygon) : “Just one last thing: is her nose as pretty as mine?”

        The Doctor: “Oh, no no no, ma’am.”

        Queenie: “Oh good, because if it was, then I’d have to cut it off, and you’d have to marry someone without a nose, wouldn’t you…Imagine the mess when she got a cold, YUCK!”


      • What about Cate Blanchett?

  19. You could say the episode isn’t really about the Doctor *changing* the history of the Time War – it’s about him discovering that he NEVER used the Moment all along. He just never remembered it until the 11th Doctor went through the events of the episode.

    It may seem a bit like a cop-out, retconning the War, but I quite like it – in the first place I felt like RTD limited the scope of stories a lot by essentially eliminating all the Time Lords – it made for a compelling personal storyline for the Doctor, but I’m glad the horizons are expanding again. Plus, it’s not all resolved – there’s still Rassilon and his High Council, who want to end time itself just to escape the war (which they don’t need to do any more, but he’ll probably still be a threat). It also quite nicely leaves the door open for the Master, but please let us move on from Jon Simm. My only problem overall is that this whole episode is somewhat hard to reconcile with The End of Time – didn’t the Doctor ultimately choose to sacrifice his people because the Time Lords themselves had gone mad? But most of the soldiers/generals seemed pretty sane to me.

    As for the Time War itself, I think showing less might’ve been better – in the end it was just a lot of flashes and bangs and fire, when we’ve been told so often how it was so much worse – but there weren’t any resurrecting soldiers, and we didn’t see how the War could directly affect other planets. It wasn’t as otherwordly or massive as it was made out to be, although I’m not complaining much because I didn’t expect them to go too far with it anyway.

    But there was so much to like overall. You can’t really go wrong entertainment-wise when you chuck three Doctors together and have them bounce their personalities off each other. John Hurt was pretty awesome, although I suppose for someone about to commit double genocide I expected him to be a little less fun – was a nice surprise. Loved that they finally completed Ten’s Queen Elizabeth storyline. Love the sudden Tom Baker cameo. It’s only too bad they couldn’t get Ecclestone in to do a quick regeneration shot, I was really hoping we’d see that. But a short glimpse at Capaldi almost made up for it.

    All in all a pretty damn good episode. I think Moffat still falls prey to his habit of building up too much hype and creating too big a set-up, only to have the pay-off fall a little short. But taken on its own this was a whole load of fun, mostly coherent and decently bold.

    • I never interpreted “gone mad” literally. It simply meant that the war became so nasty that the Time Lords resorted to use weapons so horrendous that they had banned them. Pretty much like if a nuclear war ever happens on Earth, the survivors (if any) will say mankind had gone mad. Which, in a sense, will be true, although not literally.

    • As for the “local” feel of the Time War, it was perfectly logical: they showed us only its final moments when the Daleks were on the verge of winning, closing in on Gallifrey. Take World War II for example: if someone made a movie about its final days when the Allies were marching on Berlin, it wouldn’t make sense to show battles all over Europe, would it?

  20. I read that fans had called the episode “epic” and “exciting” (I had to record it and watch at 3am) so when I sat down to see it for myself, I thought it was ok but not really eventful.

    Sure, it had massive implications for future episodes but I couldn’t help feeling that while the episode itself wasn’t bad, it wasn’t good either, just merely “alright”.

    I didn’t think Tennant was used to his fullest (although he was under a different writer so I can understand if Moffatt didn’t want to try and ape another man’s writing style for a character he never really wrote for much) and Hurt wasn’t as dark and tortured as I thought he would be considering his role in things.

    Sure, he sat moping as he stared at that weapon but still, it didn’t really live up to the constant hype we’d been bombarded with. I guess it was a typical Matt Smith show then in that case because I never felt excitement when he and Moffatt took over from Tennant and Davis a few years ago as the lead actor/writer combination.

    I liked the Capaldi cameo at the end and I’m looking forward to the Christmas episode on Trenzalore.

    • Of course Hurt wasn’t that dark and tortured: he hadn’t pushed the button yet! And it wasn’t a “typical Matt Smith show,” it was one of the best Matt Smith shows.

  21. I watched Doctor Who, starting with the 4th Doctor(Tom Baker)when I was very young. Doctor Who has been and always will be my number one favorite chow. Simply put, I could not be happier with the 50th special. Steven Moffat’s vision for the show, characters, and the mythology in general is amazing and I am truly looking forward to many more adventures.

  22. Hurt’s Doctor should have been darker as we were made to believe he would be!
    I was really surprised by how nice and happy he seemed !
    No real contrast..sadly !

    Not a bad episode with some nice moments but in general ..Moffat is not a good show runner,his stories are always all over the place and not focus at all !
    He always was better under control of some one like RTD !!

    Rose was wasted but a nice touch,and then again..was not really Rose :(

    Miss those RTD times ,hope Capaldi brings some back of it,and wish another one would take over the show and moffat still writing under control !

    • We were never made to believe the War Doctor would be darker. We were made to believe he had no other choice than doing a terrible thing in order to end another much more terrible thing. Also, he didn’t exactly strike me as particularly happy. More like resigned, at least up until the moment when another option surfaced. Who wouldn’t be happy to learn that they don’t have to commit double genocide (including their own people) after all?

  23. did anyone see peter capaldi? blink and miss it moment

    • Don’t Blink. Blink and your dead!

  24. What a load of overblown self reverential
    Rubbish. I’ve been a fan since John Pertwee and loved the reboot with Chris Eccleson. But, thus was dross of the highest order, not only that, it trashed the emotional currency banked over the last few years by devaluing the Drs` personal centuries long journey to where the character presented by Cris Eccleson.
    This episode effectively means that whatever happens in Dr who ever again doesn’t matter a dam because at some future date Moffet, or some part like him,
    Can write a script stolen from Dallas where it’s all been a dream and John hurt has a botix clinic in Chelsea.

    • Very unusual for a fan since Pertwee’s era to refer to “Doctor Who” as “Dr who”!? (^-^)

      • It was referred to as “Dr Who” in the media up until midway through the Tennant run IIRC.

        • That’s lazy media. It has never been called “Dr. Who”.

          • You’re kidding right? Hartnell was credited as Dr. Who. Sydney Newman pitched the show to BBC as Dr. Who. It didn’t change until much later.

            • Well I must be wrong. I only know Doctor Who from the mid eighties onwards, and I’m only a casual fan. It’s just I’ve seen Whovians on forums get funny about people typing it as “Dr. who”. Besides the initial “(^-^)” meant I wasn’t really being all that serious. ..but your seriousness has taught me a lesson alright.


  25. I loved it! It may change a lot of things going forward for the Doctor, but the way Moffat weaved through everything with so much ease was really impressive. I am glad we got a little Eccleston as well. Hurt’s regeneration made me freak out, and I jumped over my buddies couch and started shaking him saying “I TOLD YOU SO!!!!” And even though we didn’t get a full cameo from him, at least we know how he came to be, which is a great trade off if you ask me. Tennant was incredible, he is my favorite incarnation of the Doctor so it was a real treat seeing him mess around with Queen Elizabeth, and his interactions with Smith were hilarious and really entertaining. Overall, I’d give this special 9/10!

  26. Totally worth it for that one second glimpse of Capaldi’s eyebrows :D

  27. I really enjoyed it. That’s saying something because I’ve really disliked pretty much most of the last two seasons. I think Matt Smith is a great Doctor. It’s just IMO he’s been given some awful stories. I’m glad they reigned in Tennant a little so he didn’t overshadow Smith and Hurt. I liked the way they used Rose (That threw a few people off). …….and what a great surprise to have Tom Baker at the end. Great to see all the other Doctors too, especially Peter Capauldi.


    • Yeah, I definitely enjoyed how they used Piper. At least it wasn’t the obvious “here’s my companion”, “oh yeah, well here’s mine” route like we all assumed. She also thankfully didn’t overshadow everything, despite the role she had to play in tying everything together and making everything happen the way it did.

  28. Anyone who says they loved the 50th Anniversary special is not a true fan. It was o.k. at most. Moffat really screwed up on this one.

    • Nonsense. It’s all personal preference and opinion. I’ve seen major fans praise episodes that I thought were awful. It just comes down to taste and this episode has been the best I’ve seen for a long time IMO. I was fully expecting to be let down because whenever “Doctor Who” has an “epic” episode it always sucks. It promises too much and doesn’t deliver. This was just a solid episode. Plus…….Tmom Baker!!!!!! !!!!!! !!

      • Tmom Baker?

        You know who I mean. (^-^)

    • LMAO. Oh yeah well my dad can beat up your dad (and other 8 year old insults).

    • Oh, so YOU’re the alpha and omega of true fandom? Heh heh, thanks for blurting this nonsense out, that was hilarious!

  29. I have a question about how this special fits in with THE END OF TIME at the end of Tennent’s run as the Doctor? Rasilon and the High Council drawing Gallifrey to Earth and if the Doctor never used ‘the moment’ to end the time war and instead sent them into a pocket universe – how would Rasilon and the high council be able to get to Earth? And if the Doctor is now SEARCHING for Gallifrey, wouldn’t he have already found it and destoryed it during THE END OF TIME?

    • He didn’t destroy Gallifrey in The End of Time, he only sent it back to its rightful place. As for Rassilon, that’s the very essence of time paradoxes and there’s no good answer to that question – much like the chicken and egg thing.

    • It doesn’t, The Day of the Doctor blew up all history like many other episodes of Doctor Who (it is Doctor Who afterall, it is not a self-consistent universe, and has not been self-consistent for a very long time, probably not since the First Doctor left)

      • It didn’t “blow up all history.” On the contrary, it tied in with several past events, offered a new perspective on what everyone thought happened and brought a whole host of interesting prospects regarding the show’s future.