Doctor Who News Matt Smith stars in Christmas special The Snowmen on Christmas Day

Published on December 20th, 2012 | by Christian Cawley

Steven Moffat Discusses Time Lord Threads

Chatting with SFX recently, series chief writer Steven Moffat was quizzed about the Eleventh Doctor’s new look for the forthcoming Christmas special, The Snowmen.

Matt Smith stars in Christmas special The Snowmen on Christmas Day

In particular, Moffat was asked about how the look of the Time Lord is defined, how this is influenced by the actor (Matt Smith) and results in some interesting observations about the attire of the Doctor’s third and fourth personas in particular…

It’s interesting – you look at Tom Baker and Jon Pertwee and actually they don’t wear the same clothes all the time, but they have very, very distinctive looks. They never vary their look at all. I think we could do with moving more towards that version of it.

Clearly, then, this is a direction in which the Eleventh Doctor should be heading – but it seems that the attempts to de-eccentric-ize the ninth and tenth incarnations might have slowed down the move to this realisation (although in fairness Christopher Eccleston sported different jumpers and David Tennant had a couple of suit/tie combis).

I think we were terribly aware, Russell in particular, of not looking like somebody dressing up as Doctor Who. We were all quite paranoid about that. But it’s progressing. We started very, very dour with Chris’ Doctor. Very quickly he’s got the stupid coat and the stupid hair when David takes over.

As for the Eleventh Doctor, the progression of his look is interesting, and apparently what the actor wears affects their performance.

He’s a bit more grown-up now, he’s a bit more the daddy Doctor. He’s more Pertwee-like, really, and it just suited him. Matt’s a bit of a clothes horse – you can put him in anything. It really came down to what he felt like wearing.

For all of this and news of the Doctor’s Christmas episode hat (does it get shot or not?) head over to SFX.


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About the Author


A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

6 Responses to Steven Moffat Discusses Time Lord Threads

  1. avatar stlshawn says:

    why won’t he just answer the question. He should run for government.

    At the very end of the interview, he seems to crash a little but on his usual “say alot and nothing at all”, when he says “They never vary their look at all. I think we could do with moving more towards that version of it.”.

    In my opinion, striking an identifiable look is a key to a role’s success. When you think James Bond, you think dark suit, nice shirt, a striking look. When you think of Indiana Jones, you think of the hat, the jacket, etc.

  2. avatar DV Beasley says:

    What do I think? I think I like Moff less than ever. And I didn’t think that was possible.

  3. avatar jeanvieve7 says:

    What? are you kidding me? There was nothing stupid about 10′s hair or clothes, (love of DT completely set aside). I’m sorry but multiple incarnations of The Doctor in the past were almost cartoon….again, are you kidding me? And seriously how rude; rude remark to Russell Davies and David Tennant. I really (generally) enjoy Moffat’s writing and always have, but it seems the sheer quantity of dialogue/prose he packs into 42 minutes of television, and the frenetic pace that it is uttered can be overwhelming to the point of unenjoyable. This remark is directed both at Doctor Who and Sherlock, both which I enjoy but it seems as they progress they grow more frantic and harder to follow. Also I must say that I like Matt Smith well enough, but his Doctor is a much weaker and (dare I say stupider?) incarnation, both in character and self confidence. The reason that the 10th Doctor is the most popular, and the incarnation we most “believed” in was that both his character (and a fine performance by a great actor) made us see him as vulnerable, funny, wounded, light hearted, self-aware, and supremely confident. We knew that despite everything he was a Timelord, and could and would save the world, and deep down he never doubted this himself. 10 was a man with a sad heart but knew who he was, 11 is a boy who thinks he can, hopes he can. I’ll take a man any day….

  4. avatar BOJAY says:

    It took me a moment there but the stove pipe hat is very Troughton. Matt seems to have been directly or indirectly influenced by the Second Doctor (Bow-Tie!) in some aspects of his look and characterization. It’s not overt, but the influence is there. Not a bad thing, by any stretch. I’ve always preferred the frock coated, waistcoat, and fob watch look for the Doctor anyway. I grew to accept and like the radical Eccleston and Tennant departures from that after awhile, but I still like my Doctor more Hartnell than Eccleston in appearance all things considered.

  5. avatar BOJAY says:

    Just don’t bring back the “question marks”, please!

  6. avatar Philip Bates says:

    Matt’s my favourite Doctor, and I’ve gotta say, I love his series 5/6 look. And even then, the shirt changed. But I don’t mind when he changes costumes, like in Closing Time and the tux in a few eps… just as long as we get the tweed back!

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