Doctor Who Highlights A Difference Between Jodie Whittaker & David Tennant

Jodie Whittaker and David Tennant in Doctor Who

The latest episode of Doctor Who included an amusing in-joke that reveals one big difference between David Tennant's Doctor and Jodie Whittaker's incarnation of the Time Lord. Doctor Who season 11 hasn't really stressed continuity to the same extent as the previous incarnations, which makes every subtle link of real interest to fans.

"The Witchfinders" was a fairly traditional episode, with the TARDIS arriving in the 17th Century. Soon the Doctor and her friends were plunged into your typical Doctor Who historical episode, dealing with every from witch-hunters to an alien menace slumbering beneath the soils of Lancashire. But here's the interesting thing; this wasn't actually the adventure Team TARDIS has hoped to go on. In fact, the TARDIS had taken them to the wrong century.

Related: Doctor Who's New Opening Titles Have Made One Big Mistake

The Doctor was aiming for the year 1559; she was wanting to be a bit of a tourist and drop in unannounced at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth I. Unfortunately, the TARDIS was in a singularly uncooperative mood and overshot by at least 50 years. What's more, amusingly, the TARDIS wouldn't even clue the Doctor in or where (or when) they were. "The TARDIS is being a bit stubborn at exact readings," she complained.

Of course, had the TARDIS gotten them to Westminster Abbey in 1559, the Doctor would have been seeing a very familiar face. David Tennant's 10th Doctor teased a relationship with Queen Elizabeth I throughout his tenure, and in return crossover "The Day of the Doctor" the extent of that was revealed. They encountered while the Doctor was on the trail of a group of Zygon invaders in 1562, with him proposing to the monarch to test if she was a shapeshifter. The Queen was one of the more entertaining characters in the episode, subverting expectations by killing and impersonating her own Zygon impostor. Having freed the Doctor from the Zygons, she insisted on taking the time to marry him; she presumably expected him to come back, given that the next time she met him, in season 3's "The Shakespeare Code" (aired six years earlier) she clearly resented his departure. In that episode, the Queen referred to the Doctor as her "sworn enemy," and commanded her guards to have him put to death.

Queen Elizabeth I forms an amusing parallel between the Tenth and Thirteen Doctors. In the case of David Tennant's incarnation, he successfully navigated his way to the Queen and developed quite a surprising relationship with her. As for Whittaker? She couldn't even get there in her TARDIS, and seems totally unworried about seeing someone she jilted in a former life. It is quite entertaining to imagine what, if anything, Whittaker's Doctor would have recalled while chatting with her friends at the coronation.

More: Why Doctor Who Has Completely Divided Fans This Season

Doctor Who continues on BBC America on Sundays.

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