‘Doctor Who’ 50th Anniversary Title, Runtime & Poster Revealed [Updated]

Published 2 years ago by , Updated September 10th, 2013 at 5:28 pm,

doctor who day doctor 50 anniversary Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Title, Runtime & Poster Revealed [Updated]

With just a few months to go before the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary premieres, the BBC has finally revealed the name and runtime of the highly-anticipated team-up of the Tenth (David Tennant) and Eleventh (Matt Smith) Doctors with the Valeyard (John Hurt), who represents the Doctor’s darker side.

The title, appropriately enough, is “The Day of the Doctor.” As far as runtime goes: The Doctor Who 50th Anniversary will come in at 75 minutes, which is 30 minutes longer than a typical episode, or 17 minutes longer than the Doctor Who Christmas specials. So what, exactly, can we expect to see in this extended tribute to one of television’s greatest shows? That still remains the question – though we do have some ideas.

With the title being “The Day of the Doctor,” it’s clear that the focus of the Anniversary will very much be about the Doctor and his various iterations. The Doctor(s) will be facing off against the Zygons and the Daleks, and there is someone referred to as the Curator who will be collecting “paintings” from the Doctor’s adventures. As of now, the theory is that the “paintings” refer to people from the Doctor’s past. (No Torchwood or classic Doctor Appearances will be made, though.)

David Tennant and Billie Piper Returning for Doctor Who 50th Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Title, Runtime & Poster Revealed [Updated]

To help fight off the attack, UNIT (Unified Intelligence Taskforce), the international organization created to combat extraterrestrial threat to Earth, will be making its return with Kate Stewart now in charge. The Tenth Doctor’s TARDIS will be returning, and Clara will (somehow) be involved, as she’s the Impossible Girl.

But aside from the typical confusion that comes from trying to figure out what Moffat has in store for Doctor Who fans, it’s the Valeyard’s appearance that brings the most questions. After the Doctor Who season 7 finale, the BBC released a video in which Tennant and Smith spoke very briefly about working together and the upcoming 50th anniversary. In the video, both Tennant and Smith allude to the fact that the Valeyard, who is supposed to be the dark side of the Doctor, gets along quite well with his former selves.

And then Moffat had to go and say this to io9:

“I never quite understood, in ‘Trial of a Time Lord,’ what he was meant to be. I never understood if he was a real Doctor, or [something else]. But in a story where we are hinting that the Doctor has a hidden chapter to his life, it was irresistible to mention the Valeyard. But you know, he’ll only ever get so dark, let’s be honest. He’s the Doctor. I think a man who worries about going bad is never really going to go bad. Maybe not…”

Since Moffat doesn’t have much of a “maybe not…” personality, it’s very likely that the Valeyard isn’t nearly as dark has the Doctor believes him to be. Or is he? Considering that fact the Doctor has been traveling through time for centuries with a core set of rules and beliefs, it’s possible that the Valeyard simply represents a version of the Doctor who has given up said beliefs, which in turn would frighten the Doctor enough to consider the Valeyard his darkest secret. Then again, as Moffat said: “Maybe not…”

Whatever does happen in the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary, fans will have 75 minutes of it to enjoy. And with the return of Ten, as well as Rose Tyler (Billie Piper), fans will be able to once again return to the characters which helped kick the new series off. And no matter what, at least we know that Eleven and Clara will at least make it through the Anniversary alive and go on to star in the Christmas special. Who makes it out of that alive? Now that’s another question. Spoilers!

UPDATE: Check out the official poster for the The Day of the Doctor:

[Click for Full-Sized Version]

doctor who day doctor poster 570x847 Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Title, Runtime & Poster Revealed [Updated]

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Premieres November 23 on BBC & BBC America

Source: BBC [via: Doctor Who TV]; io9

Follow Anthony Ocasio on Twitter @anthonyocasio
TAGS: Doctor who
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  1. Has it been confirmed anywhere that Hurt is playing the Valeyard? I haven’t found anything saying that he is.

    Because, I’m pretty sure that Moffat interview in the article mentioning the Valeyard was referring to his very brief mention in ‘Name of the Doctor’.

    • Your Correct! it has not been confirmed that he is the Valeyard and i very much doubt he is. and yes moffat is talking about the valeyard being mentioned in the name of the doctor.

      • yeah, thats what i thought too, thats a very ‘taken out of context’ type article :P

        • Ok that’s good. Was going to be really surprised and irritated at the writer for dropping a spoiler like that.

    • I’d make a sarcastic comment now, but I’m way too damn impressed with your username right now.

      I mean, ‘Yolonda P. Sanchezc’. That name’s way too damn awesome to be wasted on a spam bot. I’d expect someone with that name to be too busy fighting Machete to spam on here.

  2. This whole situation has gotten to be so anti-climatic. I’m a huge Doctor Who fan but still can’t fathom why no trailer yet? Why no inclusion of Classic Who Doctors? Sylvester McCoy? Peter Davison? Colin Baker? I stopped building it up in my head because I honestly believe that I will just e severely let down when it comes to air. I don’t know if Moffat thinks that by revealing nothing but a cast list and run time he can make the special better because expectations will be so low??? I’m just fed up with all the nothing.

    • It’s because they don’t really look like they did way back when anymore, though I do agree with you. They should include more than Tennant and Smith, but I think Ecclesten had filming conflicts with Thor: the Dark World. But, despite his tenure amounting to a very mediocre TV movie that halted the Dr. Who franchise for several years, Paul McGann should be included because he’s the youngest of the “older” doctors and he still looks similar to the way he did in the Dr. Who movie.

  3. I’m surprised nobody has talked about the obvious. If Matt Smith’s version is the 11th doctor, a time lord normally only has 12 regens and one of them was used on the non-Doctor, then Smith, while being the 11th “Doctor” is actually the 12th so this next regen will be his 12th and last regen.

    • I thought he could regenerate 12 times so we’d have one more after

    • Wasnt that broken when river song brought the doctor from the brink of death?

  4. Moffat is going to retcon the entire history of Doctor Who…… He already inserted Clara the “impossible girl” into the Doctor’s past…… Why not a version of the Doctor that we didn’t even know existed? I’m ok with that.

    The Valeyard was already in The Trial of a Timelord, but I never understood who he was. He just seemed to be acting as the prosecutor during the Doctor’s trial.

    The wikipedia entry on the Valeyard is instructive. Seems like somebody got in there and edited the thing recently and it has information regarding the connection between the Doctor and the Valeyard. Something about how the Doctor can only regenerate 12 times….. But then after that he regenerates into the Valeyard which is a darker version of the Doctor?…… At least I think that’s what it’s saying.

    So what then? We get 12 regenerations of the Valeyard?

    • That’s not a recent edit. That’s been known for a while. From what I understand of it, any Time Lord can regenerate 12 times, or get 13 lives. The Valeyard was apparently some manifestation of the Doctor’s more evil self that somehow split off into its own separate being during the Doctor’s last regeneration. It’s weird, but I really don’t think classic fans have much room to grumble after that nonsense with the Watcher.

      • What if The Meta-Crisis Doctor turns into The Valeyard??? And that is hoe The Valeyard split from The Doctor….

  5. Cant wait for the 50th. glad to hear that its 75 minutes. was hoping for a little longer but it will be tied with the end of time part 2 as the longer new who episodes so thats nice. hopefully with this information means we will be getting a trailer VERY soon.

  6. My only hope is that Moffat doesn’t Moffat it up. I’d like to finally get a clear and cohesive story arch out of that man, especially dealing with something this big. It’ll probably be a steaming mess with a wet fart of a conclusion like the past couple season finales.

    • This.

      I hope its great, but I can’t see him pulling it off. He has got the show all wrong since the beginning of series 6 for me.

    • You said it man…here’s to hoping he at least acknowledges what made it great before he took over with tennant and piper being there, but probably not…I’m also hoping everyone at the BBC is just REALLY GOOD at lying, and we’re actually going to see more nostalgic faces than we’re expecting…ah, to dream…

    • Thats what I was thinking !
      Moffat just has no focus ! His stories are all over the place as he tries to put too many ideas into 40 minutes !

  7. Heard that Mcgann was spotted around the set or was that just a rumor. Hope it’s true thought and still am excited for the special.

    • Paul McGann on set!! Wow!! He was so underserved by that made for TV movie. If Moffat doesn’t retcon John Hurt’s Valeyard into the middle of the 8th and 9th Doctors, then McGann’s Doctor will be the one who had to deal with the Time War.

      I would love to see the Time War fleshed out. So far we’ve only got hints at how terrible it was.

      • As much as I agree, I think it better serves the series if they don’t.
        It has more impact as a mystery rather than showing it, given we already know the ending and our imaginations make it much grander than the show could.

        I don’t think Moffat has “Moffat’ed” the show. RTD made a good show, but his stories were weak, the last minute hail mary Deus Ex machina was the worst part of the RTD series.

        Moffat knew that and instead tried to put clues into his plot lines that were very complex but still simple enough to enjoy and just got a bit lost along the way.

        Now there’s too many unanswered questions, and as much as it annoy me and all the other sci-fi’ers out there,it’s a winning strategy, just looks at the toilet LOST turned out to be, but it was very successful because it dangled the carrot which just ended up being Lindoff’s shriveled wang. I’m surprised the last LOST zoom didn’t just say “Suck it”.

        Moffat did already mention he didn’t want the 50th anniversary to be a circle jerk of nostalgia with all the previous living doctors standing around the tardis with their “screwdrivers” in hand. He wanted it to move the series forward, so having the 10th doctor and an unknown carnation of the doctor seems like he has a good idea to start with.

        My gripe will be if Hurt ends up being the Valeyard after they put up on the screen at the end “John Hurt as The Doctor”. If that happens then “In Moffat we Trust” will go the way of WAaazzzup and Where’s the Beef

        P.S. Eccleston was already confirmed he’s a Pratt by not wanting to be a part of it due to his pigheadedness

  8. Positive thought for the 50th anniversary – since Clara helps out the Doctor’s past incarnations, will there be two Claras in this episode? I wouldn’t mind having two Jenna Louise Colemans. Giggity.

  9. jakkypinky is a rubbish spambot name. It’s certainly no Yolonda P. Sanchezc.

  10. and a pity they were perfect together
    river and the eleventh doctor a couple breathtaking
    we would have views of the beautiful
    with two brilliant minds so
    river and the doctor thinks for a bit if they had children
    of children with a higher than normal intelligence
    would have been even greater than their rocking
    I wish that Steven Moffat took all this into consideration
    we’ll see
    you never know he is so unpredictable

    it would be fantastic
    I will not even
    that this pair
    river and the doctor to separate

    river and the eleventh doctor
    to imitate a pair ready to give our lives for one another
    for me this is true love

  11. it would be really wonderful if the next companion of the Doctor was just his wife river song at least a lot of fans would not be disappointed
    and the one that most want not disappoint us Moffat would be a shame if I decide not accognere our demands and expectations Well you can always improvise saving unexpected the doctor’s wife many would be happy
    then saw that triggered the twelfth hour and if I’m not mistaken would be the last the life of the doctor would be a nice happy ending

  12. What aspects Moffat run to save the teacher River Song in that library