Doctor Who News Celebrate The Doctor Who 50th Anniversary!

Published on May 1st, 2013 | by Christian Cawley

New DWM Reveals No Classic Doctors for 50th

Fans have been up in arms for a while over the lack of classic era Doctors in the 50th anniversary – and Doctor Who Magazine has confirmed that our suspicions are correct.

Celebrate The Doctor Who 50th Anniversary!

In addition to confirming reports that Christopher Eccleston was approached and was eventually unable to do so, the magazine states:

Although David Tennant has returned to his role of the Tenth Doctor, the other old Doctors will not be taking part.

Only the two actors we’ve seen in location snaps over the past few weeks, Matt Smith and David Tennant, will be taking part.

DWM also reveals that shooting on the anniversary special is almost complete and that work on the Christmas special will start after Matt Smith completes the movie How to Catch a Monster.

Series 8 is yet to be confirmed, and as such there are no confirmed plans for further episodes at this time.

Make of that last line what you will…


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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+.

117 Responses to New DWM Reveals No Classic Doctors for 50th

  1. avatar gavinio says:

    Hardly a shock. Ever since Big Finish announced they were doing a multi-classic-Doctor story for the 50th I knew it would only be because the BBC weren’t going to do one. Disappointing though to say the least that the great Doctor’s of the past are not getting a chance to celebrate the work they put into the series history.

  2. avatar David F says:

    I’m fine with it. There’s no need to bring back previous actors. They all played the same character, and that character is already in the story. So the only purpose would be for us to see the actors again, which is a meta consideration and not the way to drive good storytelling.

    Much more excited now. The news suggests Moffat has his eye on the ball and isn’t compromising his plot by indulging in tokenistic nostalgic overload. I’m sure there’ll be plenty of other pleasing surprises.

    • I’m much LESS excited, because it shows that Moffat only has his eye on his own ego. As is often the case with him. I figured he’d decide to make the Fiftieth Anniversary into the Moff-iftieth Anniversary.

      It’ll probably be just packed to the brim with self-referential backpats to the last 4 years, and will end up not being a celebration of the last 50 years, but of Moffat’s tenure.

      Be real glad when his tenure is up, frankly. The show could do with a runner who isn’t quite so proud of himself.

      • avatar David F says:

        I just feel we fall into the trap, as fans, of thinking the only valid anniversary story is one that brings back previous Doctor actors. This is solely because The Three Doctors and the Five Doctors set a precedent. But there are so many different ways of making the event good, and we place too much store in that one formula.

        James Bond celebrated its fiftieth anniversary without bringing back the previous actors for a six-Bond adventure. Coronation Street celebrated its fiftieth anniversary without building its story around the show’s history, and without bringing back Ken Barlow’s thirty-year-old, forty-year-old, fifty-year-old incarnations into it.

        I know it’s not exactly the same, but still. We’re all so hung up on this one option, when there’s objectively no reason why it should be the expectation.

        They’ve already announced Tennant and the Zygon, because they knew the location shoots would give them away. So what else is in the story, tucked away in studio shoots? Knowing how much Moffat loves secrecy and surprises, it’s inconceivable there isn’t much more hidden away. And who’s to say he’s even being straight with Doctor Who Magazine anyway, or that they’re not playing along with a game to preserve the magic?

        • avatar Chris says:

          Seriously, you using James Bond as example? A six-Bond adventure? That could happen if you believe in that code name theory crap. Broccolis would never allow that and audiences wouldn’t it expect it and, outside of die-hard Bond fans, would think it weird.
          Doctor Who is a different matter since its been established that The Doctor can meet a previous or future incarnation of himself. What makes this anniversary so special is that its the big 50th. Its a milestone achievement and not to have any of the classic Doctors is a gigantic missed opportunity. Just having David Tennant back isn’t wholly special, they could’ve done that anytime. Colin Baker teamed up with Patrick Throughton in 1984.
          Also its important, and sadly, to note that except for McGann the Classic Doctors are getting up there in their age. I doubt some of them will be around or in shape to do something for the 60th anniversary if the show is still on then.
          Besides I think the Classic Doctors are owed something better than 1993′s Dimensions in Time and McGann is owed another on-screen appearance.

          • avatar David F says:

            Wow. Way to miss a person’s point. Whatever you say.

  3. avatar Corvus says:

    McGann should have been involved. I am -not- pleased.

    • avatar SteveF says:

      I agree that this was a wasted opportunity. If any previous lead deserves a cameo return its Paul McGann, one of the few to hit the ground running with his interpretation.

      • avatar Douglas Slee says:

        Paul McGann is the ONLY previous Doctor that I am sad that they are NOT bringing back. I would have preferred him above David Tennant. And DEFINATELY above Billie Piper.

  4. avatar lozzer says:

    I’m ok with this too – Yes, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to see McGann (as do all fans), but I guess you’ve got to get the best, most focused story you can and go with that. I can’t wait to see David back though, he’s the Tom Baker of new Who, and that’s an exciting prospect.

    • avatar lozzer says:

      This also makes the Big Finish production all the more special – now that’s something to get giddy about.

  5. Disappointing to say the least. The celebration is about the entirety of the show’s history, not just the show’s relatively recent rebirth. As for the notion that the inclusion of classic series actors would be superfluous, since they are all portraying the same character, it must be noted that the Doctor has hardly been a static character. That may be the biggest reason the show is still around to celebrate a 50th Anniversary in the first place. Each actor has placed his indelible stamp on the mythology, keeping the show alive. Except for the fact that the character is from a planet called Gallifrey and travels in a Police Box, there are few similarities between, say, the 4th Doctor and Smith’s current incarnation.

    True, a “kitchen sink” approach to the Anniversary episode would likely have been a narrative disaster, amusing, but a disaster. Still, why could the whole of Series 7 not been a long story arc, utilizing the classic actors as appropriate – something on a more grand scale than the cram-it-in-45-minutes-plot-holes-and-all productions that seem to be the norm, lately?

  6. avatar TonyS says:

    Let’s wait and see what appears on the screen, shall we?

    • avatar Bob James says:

      Always nice to hear a voice of reason for a change. Much needed, and thanks………

      • avatar TonyS says:

        Thanks, Bob :)

      • avatar zarbisupremo says:

        Yup, what he said. ^

  7. avatar IrishWhovian says:

    That is rubbish! I was looking forward to seeing classic doctors returning in the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who! Moffat, you ruined the 50th Anniversary! Having JUST David returning is unacceptable! This is meant to celebrate the past 50 years of the show! You just can’t have it without them! Matt Smith, if you said the anniversary is something that won’t dissapoint then why aren’t past doctors appearing in it?! Or past companions?! This is bullshit!! I’m very dissapointed in you, Moffat! You should be fired!!!

  8. avatar rickjlundeen says:

    It’s only a matter of time before the lack of commitment for series 8 starts people speculating that the show will be cancelled after the 50th anniversary. This will be good as it might make them appreciate the special more. :)

  9. avatar krumstets says:

    Since the 50th episode looks like it is being made to appeal to a much wider audience the lack of past Dr’s isn’t surprising .

    However …what of the Christmas special?
    This is still in the anniversary year and there is no reason why that episode couldn’t be a multi, multi , Doctor story.

  10. avatar Francis Cave says:

    Just wonderful, the one chance to feature the previous “Classic” Doctors in some shape or form and its missed.

    “In Moffat we trust”?

    Not any more !!

    • avatar Nicholas Allsort says:

      “In Moffat we trust? . . .” Has anyone actually ‘trusted’ in Mr. Moffat since the unveilling of the new Daleks? The redesigned and now-ape-freindly Silurians? The introduction of the only non-war-cloned Sontaran? (how do they manage to space/time shift around?) Stone Henge where all the might of the Doctor’s enemies were scared away by his ranting instead of blasting him out of existance and deciding to ‘team up’ (as Daleks, Cybermen, Autons etc. would probably after a wee dram down the local) and lock him up in box? Waiting for story arcs to be resolved at the end of the next series? (no wonder viewing figures are falling) The over-use of CGI?

      And so on . . .

      Unfortunately everyone has their own idea of what their ‘ideal’ 50th anniversary episode should entail, sadly when I hear reports of Steven Moffat having written an epic/fantastic/incredible story I feel disappointed when I eventually see it (eg latest Ep. Journey . . . . ) I am therefore – again -not getting too excited with what I read and hear about Steven Moffat’s ideas for the season finale nor the actual 50th anniversary episode (although the inclusion of David Tennant is a bonus).

      Also: Is the series becoming too difficult for casual viewers to follow? Hmm. . Why don’t we ask all those FANS who actually sit down and replay the episodes over (and over) again to decipher the script?

  11. avatar Howard Railton says:

    Paul McGann and Sylvester McCoy would have done it if given half a chance. I suspect Moffat wouldn’t pick up the phone as he seems distinctly anti classic shows and only interested in bringing back old monsters to ruin them as he has with the Silurians and Sontarans. They wouldn’t even put in an old control room as a nod to the past in last week’s wander round the TARDIS, there wasn’t a clue in that entire episode that there had ever been any other Doctors in there. Bizzare!

    With no new series perhaps at least the misery of Moffat is finally coming to an end. Good riddance.

    • avatar Francis Cave says:

      “With no new series perhaps at least the misery of Moffat is finally coming to an end. Good riddance.”

      Thats a bit extreme isn’t?

      I’d rather still have it remain under Moffat if the alternative is no series at all!

      • I don’t think so.

      • avatar Howard Railton says:

        I wouldn’t: for the simple reason that Moffat’s ruining the concept of the show. He’s Sexualising the Doctor/assistant relationship, marrying off Doctor Who, revealing his name, dreaming up rubbish every year, literally letting Gatiss rip the guts out of the Ice Warriors, refusing to let past Doctors in the series 50th anniversary show… Who needs Moffat? Better to see the whole thing go from our screens and him with it before anymore damage is done.

        • avatar David F says:

          In what way has he ever sexualised the Doctor/assistant relationship? He’s restored a sense of clumsy asexuality to the Doctor. Especially compared to the period before he took over. When did he reveal the Doctor’s name? You really think he will? Why will the anniversary necessarily be rubbish without old Doctors, and why would it definitely not be rubbish with them? Are you saying the new Ice Warrior was less scary and dramatic than the Ice Warriors in the Peladon stories (and arguably the others)?

          So many questions, so little time . . .

          (This is a fun thread. Proper old-school Doctor Who fan-scrap. Takes me back . . .)

        • avatar BDB says:

          Grand Moff IS killing the show plain and simple ! I am still suffering from PJNTS{POST JOHN NATHAN TURNER SYNDROME} and we all know how that turned out! Get rid of Moffat! Listen if the BBC receives phone calls and letters complaining about the fact that the other living Doctors are not in the special , this will make them do a complete 180 unlike the 69 they are giving us now! Matt Smith is not to blame here. However If I was in his position I would insist that the other actors be in the 90 minute special! This is the last straw they {BBC and MOFFAT} must allow the old Doctors to come back because they will never be this chance again! It insults the previous actors and the AUDIENCE! I repeat again have Paul M return and say in his first scene – “IT’S ABOUT TIME”!!!!!!!

          • avatar David F says:

            Right. So the BBC will stand by your vision for the show, rather than the vision of the highly experienced, multi-award-winning writer, whose vision of the show has consolidated its position as their international money spinner. Yes, that will definitely happen. And Matt Smith will side with you as well. It’s a solid plan.

            JN-T pulled Doctor Who down because he was obsessed with pleasing the hardcore fans, at the expense of sensible storytelling. So you’re saying we should avoid another JN-T situation by, as hardcore fans, forcing the producers to please us at the expense of sensible storytelling. Which is . . . exactly the same thing.

            Amazing how many fans seem to be craving Dimensions in Time 2.

          • avatar BDB says:

            David F, That is not what I mean . I do NOT want another “Dimensions IN Time” Heaven Forbid . Although that had its heart in the right place , but the show was too short to make any real sense and the 3D SUCKED and was a waste of money! Just like this 50th 3D fiasco is a waste of money ! Moffat should write for the fans and the audience which should be one in the same! He CAN write an intelligent script IF he wants to . Remember they were to begin filming earlier and he rewrote the script. The old Doctors could easily be woven into the story – correctly. Look this would be the last time anyway. What happened to old times sake. Just something to think about. Davros can come back for the very last time and most of the Doctors would finally get rid of him ! Now that would be great! Over and out.

  12. Crikey, can of worms!

    It’s worth pointing out that only the second series of Doctor Who has been announced during the previous run. Just because nothing is confirmed doesn’t mean that nothing is happening.

    Indeed, we already know from interviews that several writers are already involved.

    • avatar Bob James says:

      Wells said, Christian. We all should know by now how notoriously late the BBC are in “commissioning” or “confirming” anything. Moffat has already talked openly about work on series 8 being underway, and Matt has related that Steven has let him in on some of the ideas at play, and that they’re great. Add to that the fact that Matt confirmed in the Radio Times that he’ll be around in 2014 for series 8 (though if it’s for all or just some of it, he didn’t clarify), and there should be no doubt that series 8 will happen. A full on 13 episodes? I doubt it, but perhaps another split series, or something more like 4-6 new episodes, I’d speculate. With the amount of haters growing, perhaps the BBC should cancel the show again just to give them something new to piss, moan, and bitch about.

      • avatar Bob James says:

        And I had a nightmare that I’d travelled back in time to the late eighties. Only the whiners had something called the internet at their ready disposal now, and they were all screeching out loud about how their favorite show sucked so much. Wait a minute, it’s not a nightmare? Maybe they travelled in time? No, history just repeats itself I guess.

  13. What the H@#* does he mean the 50th shouldn’t be a fan fest?!!!!!!! It should have everything to do with being a fan fest…it’s the 50th for God sake!!! The 50th shouldn’t be about appealing to a broader audience. If people weren’t already watching Doctor Who they’re not going to start with the 50th anniversary show. This is a celebration of 50 years not a marketing scheme! Moffat claims it’s going to be huge and that it will be taking over television in Nov. Well so far all we have is some docudrama, a 60 minute special and maybe a Christmas special? Wow! That is really huge! (sarcasum). So what is the rest going to be?…… constant overhyped trailers of the 50th ann. episode after every commercial for the month of Nov.? I was personally hoping that at least Paul McGann would make an appearance. I am unbelievably heartbroken to learn that that won’t happen and sad that no other classic Doctors will make an appearance either. Thanks Soooooo much Moffat for crushing all my hopes and then stamping all over them. You suck!

  14. avatar John Shandler says:

    Disgusted. And disgusting. Moffat needs to go. Now. The 50th year has been a shameful non-celebration. No new season, just left overs. One 1 hour special with no classic doctors. Truly, truly a wasted opportunity and a disgraceful way to treat the surviving actors and fans.

  15. avatar Steve Andrew says:

    Sigh… and the over-reaction continues…

    Is it really wise to approach the anniversary with a checklist of “Things That Have To Be Included Or Doctor Who Is DOOOOOOMED!” So what if there are no classic Doctors involved? The world is not going to spin out of orbit because certain people haven’t been cast.

    And how can anyone judge a TV show based on what they think is going through the showrunner’s mind? Are you telepathic? Are you party to the inner workings of Steven Moffat’s brain? We know sweet bugger-all about the story at this stage besides what we can glean from a few set photos.

    There are six pre-Tennant actors who aren’t going to be in the show. There are many reasons why Moffat has chosen to do this…

    1. It’ll be too expensive to have them all on board (beyond CGI flashback shenanigans.)
    2. It’ll be impossible to get all their schedules to line up.
    3. It wouldn’t work for the story. (This seems most likely to me.)

    I honestly doubt Moffat is sitting on his gilded throne, smoking cigars made out of rolled-up merchandise-cash, cackling to himself, “Yeah, my guiding principle for writing the 50th anniversary special should be fan disappointment.” A lot of fans are implying an arrogance to his motives that I just don’t think is there.

    Maybe the classic Doctors are involved and they’ve just been told to shut up about it. Maybe they’re not involved and are too professional to get publicly upset about it – nobody is owed a part in the show.

    I understand speculation is the lifeblood of online fandom and it’s pretty much all we can do at this stage. But please, for the sake of your own sanity – can we just dial down the extreme outrage a little bit for the next seven months? At least wait until after it’s been on TV. Then, if it’s an awful story, believe me I will be joining in with the calls for Moffat’s immediate sacking and public hanging.

    • avatar Bob James says:

      Another welcome voice of reason. Thanks…..

  16. I didn’t start this and this will probably make no difference at this point but it’s at least a way to get your voice heard. Sign it if you want to or don’t sign it….but PLEASE keep your negative comments to yourself.

    • avatar Francis Cave says:


      Thanks for the link.

      As you say it may do nothing but its better than just being miserable about the whole thing!

      • Please feel free to share it, Thanks!

        • avatar zarbisupremo says:

          No thanks, I’d rather not look like a stereotypical fan after all these years of it being cool to like Doctor Who again.

  17. avatar John says:

    I love being optimistic about this show…. but this is a bad, bad move. Moffat’s made choices that have polarized the fanbase from Series 6 on – Talking with even New Series fans I know have them pining for Davies’ writing, Tennant’s episodes, or Donna. Classic fans tend to be even more extreme. And while I understand that striking out a legacy for one’s tenure is not going to be done by pleasing everyone, all of Moffat’s attempts to stake claim (Vastra/Jenny, River, The Silence, etc.) seem to be trying SO hard. The Weeping Angels are a classic, indisputably. Since then, his efforts have rewarded the show with ratings free fall and a sniping fanbase (Remember when we just disputed “deus ex machina” endings?). It’s not just the time shifting – Tennant’s last series and specials hovered around sometimes DOUBLE the show’s audience now. (And Smith was off to exactly that kind of start too….)

    This special could’ve united fandom in celebration, looked firmly ahead, and wrapped the last 50 years up in a bow. Now it has to overcome disappointment of a substantial portion of its fanbase – Even those pleased by Tennant probably should prepare for him to be a guest “garnish” and less a driving lead (a la Troughton in “The Five Doctors”) – And that could disappoint too; Tennant fans rightly SHOULDN’T expect him to lead the story but how can they be expected to NOT enjoy and want the most of the ONLY significant returning lead outside of Billie Piper?

    We have every right to be concerned that in its anniversary year, this show we love is unable to pull in audiences like it did 4-5 years into its existence (Which, at that point in the Classic Series, it was starting to lose numbers and needed/sought/found new mojo). Now we have a special that has confirmed that it won’t at least be an enjoyable celebration like “The Five Doctors” or “The Three Doctors” – Both of those aren’t the best stories, but they at least knew they could be a good time. It’s bold to stake this 50th special on almost entirely story merits and nostalgia nods – but if it falls short or is insubstantial, then it can’t even fall back on the previous anniversaries’ saving graces (Both were pleasing reunions that left you feeling, “Yes, this was an EVENT”).

    The only way this could be any more supremely ironic was if they just called it “The Two Doctors”. And now that “classic” story can be seen as a cautionary tale…..

    • Couldn’t have said it better myself!

  18. avatar Peter Thomas says:

    I really can’t wait until bully boy Moffat leaves & we get decent Doctor Who again. He is just so in love with himself & doesn’t give two hoots to the fans

  19. avatar Tony Ingram says:

    Just signed the petition. Hopefully more will, too. I am very, very disappointed by this boneheaded move on Moffat’s part-it’s a blatant snub to everyone who worked on the original series and to everyone who loved it.

  20. avatar Dan Hallett says:

    I suspect all is not as it seems. We might need to wait for the ‘The Doctor will return in…(insert fanboy pleasing/baiting title)’ trail at the end of the final episode.

  21. avatar Dan Hallett says:

    Er…..what is the point in sigining a petition capaigning for the inclusion of actors in an episode already nearing it completion? Crikey this is an impressive overreaction.

    • Because we are mad and want our voices heard which we don’t feel has been happening. No it probably won’t do any good since the show is almost done being filmed but it might persuade them to do something with classic Doctors in the future like next season or something.

      • avatar Simon says:

        They are doing a Big Finish audio production, so there’s that at least.

        • Yes but it’s not the same as seeing them on screen again. Especially Paul McGann who has hardly even aged and never got the screen time he so deserved…IMO. He could have been worked into the anniversary special so easily.

          • avatar Simon says:

            It is Big Finish, the guys who have cranked out some of the best Who stories in any mediun and single-handedly saved Colin Baker and Paul McGann’s Doctors from being remembered as totally rubbish. If there’s anyone capable of pulling a good Anniversary story off, it’s those guys.

        • avatar Bob James says:

          And someone who can appreciate and be grateful for something. Ah, sanity……..

      • avatar Dan Hallett says:

        Don’t get me wrong I’d love the old Doctors involved (particularly McGann) but it is well known that Moffatt tells porkies from time to time so I reckon there is a lot still under wraps on this one. I’d rather go in with lower expectations and then be surprised when they do whip out a Doctor or two (or 11). I have a feeling that all the righteous fury being spouted here will look a bit silly come November. I hope so anyway.

        • But in this case if Moffat is lying he is only hurting himself and the show and not being very respectful to fans of the show. Just look at us! We are all in a tizzy…understandably. How would be the purpose of this lying and teasing on this scale? If this is true then it’s downright cruel…sick even. That would be the working of a cruel, sadistic, sick mind if this is all just one big joke!

          • avatar Dan Hallett says:

            Unfortunately it is in our nature as fans to be overly melodramatic at times. I’m just going to hope for the best, there is still 6 moths to go so I’m sure a little more will be revealed closer to the anniversary itself.

          • avatar Bob James says:

            A lot of you, a whole lot of you, need some Xanax, or Ativan, ASAP…….

    • avatar John says:

      Re: petition – In the days of the classic series (shoot-edit-broadcast with reshoots/remounts being rare) I’d say you have a point. However, with MONTHS leading up to the event, I’d say it at the least might show the BBC that the Producer might lend the fanbase/viewing audience more of his ear – In terms of business (BBC Enterprises/Classic Who/merchandising) we’re probably more of a force than you’re crediting….

      And in terms of “overreaction” – Uh, given how “Every Dalek ever!” played out in “Asylum of the Daleks” I can understand the concern here. And I LIKED that episode. But it certainly promised something it didn’t give much of (Imagine if in the 50th, you see Tennant and Piper walk by in the background in one scene in wide shots…..)

      • avatar Dan Hallett says:

        Good point Re Asylum, now that was a let down. Personally I am happy to wait and see what we actually get in November before I grumble too much.

        • avatar David F says:

          Blimey. People are actually angry because a piece of entertainment doesn’t have the right actors in it? If Moffat has shattered all your dreams, I’d suggest you’ve set the bar extremely low for your ambitions in life.

          I love Doctor Who, but the worst I can ever feel about it is mild disappointment. Moffat hasn’t always struck the right tone for me, but it’s still Doctor Who, and it’s still made with love and good intentions.

          Any time we reach the point of angry petitions over a piece of drama, it’s a sign that we desperately need to get some perspective on the world.

          • avatar Dan Hallett says:


          • avatar John says:

            Er, who said I’m angry? Implying that this has torpedoed my life/dreams is a bit bold, don’t you think? I’m sure others feel disappointed and confused that a literal once in a lifetime opportunity may pass – Did you READ the petition? It’s certainly stated in a polite manner. (As are MANY comments; there’s more Moffat-damning on this thread!)

            In an age where shows can be brought back or kickstarter-ed into films by fan appreciation, writing off a petition seems as dour and presumptious as those who write off Doctor Who fans as sad (mostly male) sacks who can’t get dates or Tennant-squealing fangirls.

            And for the record – The special COULD be brilliant. I said it. But I think it’s a shame that it’s confirming something that’ll poison some expectations and start an uphill battle. And if it’s SO bad to look back, then why even have Tennant and Piper in it? It just makes other absences glaring by their inclusion…

          • Because people have no right to demand the content of things meant to entertain them, actually entertain them?

            Shock and surprise, you realize they don’t make this show for themselves, or at least they’re not supposed to. They make it for US. That’s the point. The fans, the viewers. To believe that your role in this is so passive as to just sit back and take what’s given you… That’s sad.

            Entertainment is a PRODUCT. It’s a SERVICE. You don’t have to accept substandard products.

            Attitudes like yours are why people like Moffat and Michael Bay succeed in making the garbage they do. They sit there, condescend to the fans, spit on them, take beloved properties and run them into the ground, and then sit back and laugh at you, because they know’ll you come back for more each time, no matter how low the drivel they put out.

          • avatar Steve Andrew says:

            Totally agree. Writing off a show seven months before broadcast seems a bit much.

          • avatar SteveF says:

            Couldn’t have put it better myself DavidF. The classic years weren’t always great by any stretch of the imagination, and a lot of it repetitive, but the revival has delivered higher and consistent levels of writing, acting and production. These days, even the bad episodes are no worse than ‘average’, and there is usually at least one standout scene that’s worth watching. (I’ve been a fan since the Troughton years btw).

          • avatar Bob James says:

            To Mr David Schlueter, and anyone who might be thinking along those lines, I think that there is a misapprehension present. I believe that RTD has commented on this, and it seems that Steven Moffat has followed the same philosophy. JNT obviously made Doctor Who “for the fans”, trying to meet all expectations, and tick off all the fan demand boxes. Arguably, this approach didn’t always work out. Any showrunner can’t make Doctor Who “for the fans” in the sense that it’s “product”, because not only would this be pandering and patronizing of the worst sort, it would utterly invalidate and deprive the show of any integrity, creative license, and potential for growth. A showrunner must work and assemble the best group of people to make the best Doctor Who that they can possibly make. They’re not going to take surveys, or attempt to please everyone, because that’s foolish and impossible. The ones who make the show must stick to their own instincts and creativity. Stagnation and irrevelance result from any other approach. They’re not making cheeseburgers, pizza, or car tires here. This process cannot be “made to order”. Some will enjoy the results and some won’t. There’s always dvd’s for those who long for a bygone era, or the “good old days”. I’m personally very grateful that the fans, myself included, are not making Doctor Who, or dictating how it’s made. That would only prove to be the most vacant form of pandering fanwank masturbation. In summary, Moffat and company, just like RTD and company did, are working to make the best Doctor Who they can make, and in my opinion, they have both succeeded and Moffat continues to succeed. He wants us to continue to love this show and appreciate it, but he’s not listening to you, me, or anyone who isn’t actually putting in the hard work to accomplish this. And thank God for that……….

          • avatar John says:

            Wait. Did someone really just say that Doctor Who isn’t made by fans? Have you SEEN the Doctor Who confidentials/multiple interviews with Davies/Gatiss/Roberts/Moffat…..geez, even Gaiman? Arguably, Doctor Who is being made by fans and has been since the 1996 TV movie. Moffat simply is from a school of thought that differs from some others, but saying the show isn’t made by fans is willfully ignoring why it came back in the first place: FANS. There’s a good reason why you aren’t watching a reboot of “Ace of Wands”, “Blake’s 7″, “Doomwatch”, or “Buck Rogers” on BBC1 – those programs faded while the Who fanbase thrived and surged. “Survivors” showed up…..and that even PIGGYBACKED on Who fans. (That’s gone now, though….)

            At no point did I (or any of the other posters here, it seems) suggest that the special be rewritten top to bottom. However, should a CELEBRATION of a show driven by fandom ignore their input/outcries? No. Should it get the old Doctors included? Maybe. I’ll agree that if it affects quality, then no – a great story should override them being in it. But should a fanbase be able to voice its displeasure to those responsible? Oh yes. Absolutely.

            My original point was that decisions like this (and like it or no, Moffat’s the top guy so he takes the perceived blame) are dividing fandom in a year that should easily bring us together. A year that also sees the program’s ratings CONTINUE to dwindle, when its profile and event should raise them. and if you think the BBC isn’t noticing that….well, I’m sure they’ll also notice that old episodes/merch sell just fine even if no one watches new ones. Guess what happens then? If fandom is dividing, and the casual viewer can’t be bothered to care, then we absolutely should be concerned. Anyone who thinks that we can get Moffat fired is kidding themselves. But I’m still far more concerned that this show that we love (We do agree on that, right?) is looking at dropping numbers in a year that should have an easy win on that front. Whether you see Moffat as succeeding or not, it’s on his watch that the program is LOSING overall viewers. That’s probably not us, the fans, but if we start going or stop caring then it’s even less of a desirable situation.

            Honestly, I said earlier the special COULD be great. Old Doctors or no. But ideally, if Moffat knows just how much he’s polarized fans with that decision, then I hope it pushes him to make it that much greater. He’s taken the far more difficult road with the anniversary with only Tennant/Piper as guest consolation. And if the BBC worries that Doctor Who is fading but sees that it still rallies fans to protest and petition, then that’s a victory too – At least we care enough to make some noise. Dropping numbers and no noise, and we may have some other, less happy reasons to flash back to 1989.

            And like it or not, I guarantee someone (probably a few someones) high up at the BBC views Doctor Who as product. Very EXPENSIVE product. And that person probably has the power/influence on whether it’s made or not. As an artist in a couple of mediums, I appreciate and endorse the thought that it’s the artistic merit and striving that matters overall. But entirely ignoring your audience isn’t a good plan, either.

        • avatar Bob James says:

          That Doctor Who has been made by people who love it (i.e. fans) was never in contention. The “fans” who have made it however, know the difference between what’s needful as opposed to what’s appetizing. They are able to act as professionals, their love for the show being their passion, and their professionalism serving as their paradigm. Making great Doctor Who is what leads to an audience tuning in to watch it, and fanwank would close off the possibility of the show finding a wider audience. And please get your facts straight, John, within context (final viewing figures, including iTunes, etc.) Doctor Who is NOT dropping in ratings. I suggest you take a look at any issue of DWM which does a very thorough accounting and comparision of the actual viewing figures (as opposed to tabloid bullshit, or “fan” ignorance) each month. Doctor Who is holding its own, is thriving, and healthy, where the big picture is concerned. As to fandom being divided, by Moffat, or anyone else for that matter, what can be divided was never united in the first place. Maybe in the course of Doctor Who’s evolution, change, and growth, it’s just not certain peoples “cup of tea” anymore. That’s fine. Nothing wrong with that. Again, there’s the dvd’s for those who want to live in the past and relish a certain era. That indulgence is vastly preferable to chaining the show to the fence, and suppressing its growth by trapping it within its own past, or anyone’s narrow imagination.

          • avatar David F says:

            This concept of people “demanding” to be entertained is a terrifying concept. What is this, the Colisseum?

            (Or are you paying your own tribute to Doctor Who history by recreating the plot of The Greatest Show in the Galaxy?)

            It’s not about having the right to attack people for failing to entertain us. It’s about having the perspective and dignity not to.

          • avatar John says:

            I respect that it’s a matter of perspective whether Moffat “succeeds” or not (Personally, I like his writing, but feel he has his own agendas which should take a backseat to the quality of the show – Davies seemed to figure this out after Series 2 – The “Torchwood shoehorn” year – and then Who’s quality shot WAY up…). But saying that he’s a fan running the program because his qualifications and understandings are better than others is presumptious and a matter of opinion; He simply could’ve been in the right place at the right time. (And truly, it’s often down to “Who you know” – and he’s been well-connected for a looooong time) However, I also DO have my facts straight. And for you to simply point to DWM as the final word is a serious bias; It’s like getting a “non-biased” review from a devoted, lifelong fan. (And yes, I like the publication.) To be blunt, you can’t dismiss my concerns with a FANBASE publication and then say that maybe it needs to grow beyond the fanbase. These defenses are so general that you could apply them to the same JNT era you earlier called out as aguably flawed in its approach. (In fact, JNT DID use your same defenses. Check the interviews in DWM. :) )

            Just insisting the show is healthy is ignoring what could be cause for concern. (And really, there’s a certain protagonist on a show we watch who might tell you that it’s better to not just dismiss warning signs no matter what you’re told about things being fine.) I’ve said all along that everything could be fine, the special could be great, and maybe we don’t need the old Doctors in it. But I certianly can be of the opinion that it’s a shame that it may very well set fans against it unfairly. And condemning fan passion and expression for this show is simply wrong; The show came back out of the passion of these fans, and it’s better that it doesn’t diminish – Even when it warrants outcry to some. I don’t expect this to change cast listings, but in a year where I had thought the show would have an easy ride even after time shifting and downloads it’s still behind – and that’s AFTER a huge push worldwide.

            I’d rather not be right about these things. But the series thinning out over time and seeing LESS production in its anniversary year (When merchandise and overseas hype should really cushion it in any case) is just one more thing to have concern over. I’m actually happier with Series 7 than I was with 6, but in no way does that make me think I should just blindly defend the show based solely on DWM – That’s like believing the same people who take the tabloids declaiming “Akhaten” as the worst episode after a twitter survey as gospel.

            Someone above said the 50th would be the best excuse to look back. I agree. The show has done much looking forward since its return. I don’t think this is about “demanding”, I think this is about loving something so much you’re compelled to speak. If art provokes that, bravo. And I do think, in fairness, that if this “Only Two Doctors!?!?!” special is amazing, wonderful, and totally makes up for the lack of 4-9 to those who just moaned about it…..then all those who just dumped on Moffat should speak up to. Fair’s fair, y’know.

            I’d love for you to be right and for all to be well. But it’s when we assume that and take it for granted that things usually go amiss

          • avatar BOJAY says:

            So, part of your point, John, is that DWM cannot be trusted to be objective? When they collect and compile actual viewing figures from overnights through finals, and report them? Are you suggesting that they are misinforming, or inflating the figures, or perhaps just lying about them? If you’re making an accusation, then that’s your business. Your point is not only not made, but not an objective point at all. The way people watch television is changing, and the ways and means of the interpretation of viewing figures is changing with it. Maybe you’d rather trust the tabloids?

          • avatar John says:

            RE: DWM. I never claimed that DWM didn’t get their facts straight. Those same facts also indicate that overnight viewing figures and the totals after time shifting and BBC iplayer STILL show a drop in figures. Explaining away those drops is nice, but just assuming that a fan publication is the final word is still a bias. I like Moffat’s time on the show overall more than I did Davies, but I’m not going to pretend that the general viewership hasn’t dropped. And I don’t need to consider the tabloids – there are reliable online resources, including the BBC itself, that back my points and concerns.

            Again, this concerns me more because Doctor Who did this before. Thinned out its episode count, raised the bar and went daring and adventurous new places with its writing, and was smart about its resources and cut the fat away (3 years ago we had Confidential, and two spinoffs – Now we have none of those). I’ve just described the McCoy years, and those merited a cancellation.

            I can’t help but feel that these arguments against these points merely assume that the show CAN’T be cancelled. It CAN’T be doing badly. It’s an expensive show to make, and anything can happen – If numbers slip over time, that’s the truth. I’ve treasured this show returning ever since 2005. And I knew with it doing great and a 50th anniversary, it was guaranteed to stick around until then. After this year, all bets are off. There’s only a Series 8 when they announce it, and that’s not happened. Cancellation? Maybe not. Rest and Reduction of episodes a year? Well, the latter’s already happened and continues to happen. You can carry on assuming all’s well because that’s what you’re told, or you can consider all possibilities. I am, and that’s why I’m trying to enjoy every minute – I’ll not take this show for granted, and I think that’s why people got up in arms on this thread in the first place.

            Again, I’d love to be wrong, and have this show run and run. But ignoring all possibilities – whether they include year+ breaks/the show’s end, Old Doctors in the 50th, or a brilliant 50th without them that surprises everyone – is just silly – anything’s possible.

            And by the way, DWM? They announced all this about the Old Doctors with NO OFFICIAL CONFIRMATION FROM THE BBC. (Also reported on Blogtor Who and several other reliable sites) Good fact checking, that. ;)

          • avatar Bob James says:

            Taking the show for granted, John, is the last thing I’m doing. If the show’s viewing figures were really dramatically dropping, or the show were actually in trouble, and I was still playing Pollyanna, that would be the case. But the viewing figures are not dramatically dropping, and the show is not in trouble, so there’s no reason to find fear in imagined shadows. Doctor Who’s platform extends well beyond the UK now, and it’s highly profitable for the BBC. The peaks and valleys are all within reasonable, acceptable parameters currently. Comparing the shows current vitality to the end of the classic run is just silly. The Cartmel Masterplan was brilliant, but it was a whole lot too late to turn the fate of the show around. There was also a hostile and/or indifferent BBC to contend with, and a producer who had been trying to get out for quite awhile. Those factors, coupled with an ACTUAL DROP in viewing figures sealed the shows fate then. We now have a supportive BBC, and a much better paradigm with the advent of a “showrunner” shepherding the whole lot. And again let me remind you of the delay in OFFICIAL confirmation from the BBC regarding series 7, and Matt Smith’s continued involvement in it. I do recall a rather sudden announcement after people began to fret back then. But it was in the works BEFORE the OFFICIAL BBC ANNOUNCEMENT, just as series 8, whatever form it will take, is now.

          • avatar John says:

            Look, it’s really clear you’re going to be overliteral if I draw parallels (like I did with the McCoy era) and basically sound off the DWM party line. So, here:

            1. The show, in its 50th anniversary year, has lower viewing figures than it did previously. Also, in the last three years, several factors indicate that its cut back for its own qulaity and survival. (Less production and airing, no spin-offs and Confidential.

            2. Fandom DOES seem to be strong and vocal. That’s awesome.

            3. But the bottom line is that the show is still expensive, and makes the BBC money whether its on air or not.

            4. I don’t think it’ll be cancelled. We agree on that. Rested? Maybe. Reduced further in production? Very possibly. The signs are there.

            I’d love to be wrong. But if I am, it’ll be a happy surprise. If you’re wrong, it seems you’re in for a shock.

  22. avatar Guy Grist says:

    I know I would have liked some classic doctors in it but as long as the story is good I’m fine with it and at least the Tenth and Eleventh Doctors will get decent screen time rather than a story of cameos and banter.

  23. avatar vortexter says:

    Very bad decision to leave the classic Doctors out but lets be honest, the new series has never really catered for the loyal fans who kept it going for the wilderness years. The only Doctor offerred a role other than Tennant was Ecclestone who cant be bothered to put his pride aside to please the fans for a special appearance just to please us. And poor Paul McGann who could have been honoured and had a chance to shine and get a little more screentime along with his predecessors have been shabily ignored.
    Past Doctors: If by chance any of you gentleman are reading and I hope you are, take it from us, you will be sorely missed.
    And Mr Moffatt if you are reading, what a shame…You have missed your opportunity to shine as well.

    • They certainly have treated Paul McGann very badly over the years and he has been nothing but loyal and nice to his fans.

      • avatar Bob James says:

        The problem, Catherine, is not that they have treated Paul McGann badly, but that they have barely treated him at all. I was grateful for the inclusion of Paul in the flashbacks of “The Next Doctor”, and “The Eleventh Hour”, not to mention his inclusion in John Smith’s “A Journal Of Impossible Things” (Human Nature/The Family Of Blood). It acknowledges his rightful place in the canon, and believe it or not, that had been disputed by some. His involvement in the Big Finish audioplays have given him and us the continuity that we wanted. I would love to see him on the show (it could still happen), but I’m sure RTD and Steven Moffat had their reasons for not pursuing his appearance.

  24. avatar SteveF says:

    I like Steven Moffat’s writing, one of the best ever for DW in my opinion, but I was also disappointed that the 50th is looking at this point, less like a celebration of the entire canon.

    I can see how awkward incorporating so many ‘Doctors’ into one story would be, plus returning companions and foes. ‘The Five Doctors’ was fun in terms of seeing old faces, but hardly a masterpiece of story telling, so I can see why that formula would be avoided. Moffat is smart enough though to write something that includes the older actors in cameos for example, but seems to have chosen not to do so.

    Still, even though I’m not as excited as I was for the November special, I trust Moffat’s ability to pull something wonderful out of the bag for the 50th. (Perhaps inserting Matt Smith and Jenna into old footage from the classic years?). There’s also Mark Gatiss’ one off drama to look forward to, and it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that actors and props from that production may turn up in the special!

  25. avatar Gareth says:

    RTD please come back in 2015. All is forgiven

  26. avatar Phillip says:

    I see similarities between tom and matt. David was great, but if we’re going to compare…david is closest to peter davison and matt smith is the tom baker of the new series.

  27. avatar zedarean says:

    Oh my. I like to think not everyone hates Moffat, just that the haters are much more vocal. I personally love what he’s done with the show, and it has been much more consistant in quality since he took over. I suspect he’s been building toward the 50th anniversary since he took over, hence the multi-season long arch, and I’ll take a solid story that’s the culmination of a 3 year long arch over a silly ‘Old Who’ check list.

  28. avatar CastellanSpandrel says:

    I would’ve liked to see the ‘classic’ Drs in it, I really would, but at the same time, how could any writer make a decent story out of so many Drs? It was hard enough for T Dicks to do it with 5 (or 4 and a bit) of ‘em over 90 minutes, never mind 8 over 60.

    Looking forward to judging the story on its own merits.

    • avatar zarbisupremo says:

      Well said, Castrol GTX ! ;-p

  29. avatar Geoff says:

    I’ve always thought 10 is more like 3, modern day earth bound settings, very much a man of his time etc and 11 is more like 4, a bit more outlandish, in persona and story telling.

    I’m actually not bothered that the old Doctors won’t physically appear because I have no desire to see them as they look now trying to recreate their performances. There’s a real grotesque quality to that which I think should be avoided. I imagine Mr Moffat came to a similar conclusion. This is where audio adventures get the jump on the TV version. However I will be disappointed if they aren’t honoured by some means in the 50th, maybe along the
    lines of The Next Doctor or Eleventh Hour.

    What is intriguing is that last line about the next (or not) series. I wonder what that is all about?

    • avatar Bob James says:

      See my comments above, Geoff. The BBC is notorious about waiting until the “eleventh hour” (ha, get it?), before announcing the commissioning of a next or new series. They just did that with the last series as well. Steven Moffat has already spoken on record saying that work on series 8 is underway, some writers already at work, and Matt Smith has confirmed Moffat speaking with him about his plans for series 8. Matt has also confirmed via the Radio Times that he’ll be involved (though he didn’t specify whether it would be the whole series or just a portion, I think we’ll be getting a regeneration in 2014). Doctor Who is thriving and healthy on a worldwide scope, and the BBC has no reason to even consider cancelling it, or resting it. Will it be another split series? Will we have to wait until the Autumn for new episodes? These are the questions awaiting answers.

  30. avatar zarbisupremo says:

    Can I just point out that the 25th anniversary didn’t have any previous Doctors either or have you lot conveniently forgotten that in your desire to stick the boot into Moffat? Get a grip, for crying out loud. As for that petition, do you honestly think it will do anything to change something that is already well into production ? Some of the people commenting here remind of the so-called uber-fans from the 80s, and look what happened when the producer took notice of them and their views.

    I have my own theory as to how the other Doctors might be featured, despite the denials but I’m not saying what it is.

    • avatar gavinio says:

      In reply could I point out that Silver Nemesis was complete and utter shite?

      Though I’m disappointed that none of the other Doctor’s will be appearing I’d rather wait and see what the story is like after transmission before commenting on it. However, I don’t think 60 minutes is the best way for the 50th to be marked – a 90 minute special should surely have been the minimum given how a docudrama about the show’s creation is that length. Surely the mother ship should have got that amount of time too?

      • avatar zarbisupremo says:

        Where did I say that Silver Nemesis was anything other than a load of old Barry White ?

        • avatar gavinio says:

          I was just saying the 25th anniversary was so bad it made the Twin Dilemma look like Macbeth! Just because there was no previous Doctor’s for that anniversary it doesn’t mean that’s a good thing based on the evidence of that time!

          • avatar zarbisupremo says:

            Someone must love Silver Nemesis, Gavinio, they’ve given me one thumbs down, and you’ve been given two, LOL !

  31. avatar iank says:

    I’m not sure what fantasy land SteveF is living where NuHu has ever been better than any period of the original series, but it has little bearing on reality. NuHu has ALWAYS been markedly inferior to the original series but its state under Moffat has now sunk even lower than it did in the Tennant years and is nothing but an embarrassment. The news of no real Doctors In the 10th anniversary NuHu special is little surprise, given how often Moffat displays his disrespect for the real show while bigging up his fairy tale nonsense. Series 7 has been almost unbearably bad; how they have the cheek to claim a paycheck for this stuff is beyond me…

    • avatar David F says:

      I love old Doctor Who, but come on . . . Seriously? The new series has always been inferior? Blink is inferior to The Twin Dilemma? Asylum of the Daleks is inferior to The Chase? Waters of Mars is inferior to The Horns of Nimon? And not just inferior, but “markedly” inferior?

      Can you put your hand on your heart and say you’re not exaggerating even a little?

      • avatar Howard Railton says:

        Asylum spends ridiculous amounts of time bringing the Ponds back for no reason whatsoever, as if the Daleks would care! And when they are in it they spend more time going on about their marital mishaps. So do you really think bringing back actual past Doctors is that much of a stretch for an appearance?

  32. avatar LD says:

    It is sadly astounding to see just how many fans of Doctor Who seem to feel that, if the anniversary show isn’t made to their preconceived standards:
    A) it’s obviously going to be complete rubbish;
    B) Steven Moffatt did it on purpose just to spite you; and
    C) the obvious response is to pitch a temper tantrum about it.
    That’s a rather self-indulgent ‘Do it my way or don’t bother’ attitude…

    Three Doctors? Six Doctors? Eight doctors? Who gets to choose? You? Unless we’re going to have the classic series Doctors all trapped in a time bubble as William Hartnell was for the 10th anniversary, how could such a 60 minute story possibly work? Whatever thin plot might be concocted would collapse under the constraints of forcing all those aspects into it – it could not possibly turn out otherwise. The first three Doctors have died. Tom Baker is nearly 80 years old. It’s not possible to go back in time to bring the 1975 Tom Baker to the present day. Peter Davison is in his 60′s now, not his early 30′s. Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy are both 69. Could Moffatt have devised an explanation of each incarnation having aged and written some or all of them into the story? I suppose so, but would such a story really have any value apart from the novelty factor? It’s hard to see how. It seems a much better decision to let them have their anniversary adventures via audio and imagine them as they were. It’s fine for the production team to give a nod to long time fans (and who’s to say there won’t be any number of them come November?), but to let a petulant segment of the fan base dictate the parameters of the show and decide what must and must not be in it is to repeat the JNT mistake. That era didn’t end very well, did it?

    I, for one, am content to wait and see what November brings. There are announced aspects of the story that don’t really thrill me either. I don’t have great enthusiasm about Tennant coming back. I had grown quite tired of the invincible demigod persona RTD had turned the Doctor into, and I would gratefully have forgone still another in a seemingly endless string of return appearances by Rose. Who knows, come November, both those parts of the story might turn out very well and I’ll be glad of their inclusion. I wouldn’t have chosen to include either one, but I’m not going to stamp my feet and hold my breath – and I won’t be signing any petitions demanding they be left on the cutting room floor.

    • avatar David F says:

      Brilliantly put.

      • avatar Steve Andrew says:

        I agree completely, LD. I just don’t know how we can pass judgement on a show that hasn’t even been completed yet. If nothing else, the current season has been full of surprises – a lot of people didn’t know what to expect from Hide and it ended up being wonderful (cue a lot of responses telling me how wrong I am to 10 decimal places.)

        The thing I really love about Who these days is that element of surprise. Especially in a season with more individual stories (all single eps) and a less defined season arc. I don’t know what I’m going to get from week to week and I like that. Same with the 50th – I’m happy to get occasional teases and titbits from the production team, but ultimately I know can only form an opinion on it after I’ve seen it.

        I’m not saying people should stop complaining, please carry on to your heart’s content. Send out all the petitions you want – it’s a free country, we have free speech. But just remember – the BBC is under no obligation to change a show just because some fans kick up a fuss. And if a few thousand fans register their disapproval about a show – fine, but I can guarantee there is at least an equal number who are perfectly happy with the show.

        I’m sure if the internet existed in the early 70s there would be lots of people clamouring for that Hinchcliffe chap to be sacked for turning Dr Who into a bloody horror show…

    • avatar Dan Hallett says:

      Well said LD.

    • avatar BDB says:

      I say so what if they are older! It is just not right! Pertwee was older in the 5 DRS and even older in Dimensions! Troughton was older in 5 DRs too ! And he barely touched up his hair in the 2 Drs! Moffatt Does not want them back! Not enough money to pay them perhaps!BS! 2 new shows for the 50th year! Where is the money??? WASTING IT ON THAT CRUD OF 3D!!!Diminsensions had awful 3d effects , they never learn! We are all older now ! Not fair! Most of the audience will never forget or forgive this , wait and see! OVER and out!!

      • avatar Tim says:

        3D has come along way in 20 years so money isnt the issue …Most of the audience doesnt care about the classic series and would probably be confused about a bunch of old men being brought in just to check the boxes. There is no reason to assume that an anniversary special has to involve previous Drs anyway .

  33. avatar drewboynton says:

    This is a travesty. The older Doctors should be involved…even if they were playing different parts. This just makes me mad at Moffat and ready to show him the door.

    • avatar David F says:

      Do you want a special that takes half an hour reintroducing the Doctors one at a time, and another half an hour having them interact with each other, and then dispenses with the rest of the plot as an afterthought? That’s what a multi-Doctor story would be. The structral problems of The Five Doctors, doubled. In essence, as dramatically interesting as a man arguing with himself in the mirror for ninety minutes.

      And imagine all the excited eight-year-olds, bemused and deflated by a bunch of old men soaking up precious screen time bickering, when they’ve spent weeks looking forward to fun and adventure.

      Imagine all the new fans, who’ve come to the series in recent years, and how irritating they would find it to have our demands satisfied at their expense. And there are more of them than there are of us, and each one of them is just as entitled to enjoy the show. Even johnny-come-lately Americans are just as deserving of being pleased as us.

      It will be FINE. And if it isn’t, so what? Doctor Who has always been uneven. Sporadically brilliant and sporadically ho-hum. That’s the deal we’ve bought in to. We love it anyway, for all its flaws. Right?

      • avatar Guy Grist says:


    • avatar Bob James says:

      I think it would be a matter of him showing you the door if he actually encountered you, not the other way around………

  34. avatar Spider-pope says:

    Sort of disappointed and relieved personally. Sure it would be nice, in theory, to have multiple classic Doctors involved. But i’d rather remember said Doctors as they were when they portrayed the role, rather than watch Colin Baker waddle around while Tom phones it in.

    Featuring them now, i’m afraid to say, would appear more parody than reverential nostalgia. Far, far better to save them for the Big Finish Audio where our imaginations can restore them all to their finest.

  35. avatar Douglas Slee says:

    The ONLY thing that’s making me mad about the 50th anniversary special is the fact that Rose Tyler is back. I thought we got RID of this “Mary Sue” character when RTD left.
    I consider the inclusion of Rose as a bigger disappointment than the exclusion of older Doctors.

    • avatar Howard Railton says:

      Oh God, is Billy Piper in it? How can Moffat justify sticking her in it and not the old Doctors? How ludicrous is that??????????????

      • avatar Spider-pope says:

        Because she isn’t 80 years old and was a major part of the shows revival?

        • avatar Bob James says:

          I think you might be on to something there, Spider-pope……….

  36. avatar datechguy says:

    So this is in fact a 9th anniversary special rather than a 50th.

    What’s the point?

    • avatar David F says:

      Oh, you’ve seen it? Wow. Don’t give away the ending, you lucky boy.

    • avatar zarbisupremo says:

      You’ve seen it, have you ? Btw you got your sums wrong.

  37. avatar 1st2last says:

    I’m disappointed too, and confused. What was this all about: – Who are all these people? Has Bob Geldof been cast? Is this some other programme? It’s all beyond me.

    • avatar authorman94 says:

      That’s why I’m reckoning this may, somehow, be a bit of false information done to throw us off. Why on Earth would Dave, Matt and the others say there are “familiar faces” returning if something like this if so far, no prior Doctors (apart from him) and no past companions (apart from Billie Piper) seem to be returning?

      To be fair though, “familiar faces” could mean anything because as a statement it’s very vague.

  38. avatar Mugen Pharoah says:

    Personally I’m deeply disappointed about no Classic Doctors appearing. This second half of series 7 has been more miss than hit – the season opener and Hide were good but every other episode has been flawed and distractingly so in my opinion.

    I am really looking forward to an ‘Adventure in Space in Time’ though, but I think I’ll reserve judgement about the actual anniversary special until I see it…..

  39. avatar zarbisupremo says:

    The over-the-top reactions of certain ‘fans’ is laughable and embarrassing in equal measure, you’re acting like the stereotypical anorak and scarf-clad w****rs which the media enjoy portraying us as. What do you hope to achieve by threatening on Twitter to not watch the remaining episodes of the current series or creating a petition to change the special when production is already well underway ? It just makes us sane fans point and laugh at you while inwardly cringing and doing a Picard face-palm. Don’t you think that passing judgement on something which you haven’t seen yet is just a wee bit sad ? To quote a well-known actor from another genre series, “Get a life, will you people” !

    • It just makes us sane fans point and laugh at you while inwardly cringing and doing a Picard face-palm.

      You mean this, right?

      • avatar zarbisupremo says:

        Bejesus ! That’s the one !

  40. avatar Derek Dodebier says:

    I read a comment in an earlier issue of DWM that said that a 50th Anniversary Episode without the Multi-Doctor Element would be like a Christmas Dinner without all those little pieces of Pork Wrapped in Bacon ( You’d enjoy it but you would Feel like something Important was Missing.). Well That Person behind the Comment is very, VERY Wrong indeed. Judging by the Episodes ol’Moffat has churned out so far, a 50th Anniversary Episode without the Classic Doctors would be like a Christmas Dinner that is Festering with legions of Maggots and has been shot several times By Moffat with a Acid-Gun( You would be sick to the Darkest recesses of your Stomach and Feel as though Part of Your Soul has been Forcefully Removed from your body through your Chest Cavity while you were being Water-boarded.).

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