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Published on December 18th, 2013 | by Danny_Weasel

Moff Talks Matt’s Regeneration

Just when you thought there could be no more to speculate about the upcoming regeneration, the Moff manages to do it again and get everyone’s tongues wagging again.

This time the man in charge has been letting slip to SFX Magazine about what it means to regenerate and how they wanted to play the big change this time.

I was trying to think about it from the point of view of what it would be like if someone told you, “When you wake up tomorrow morning, you’ll still be alive, but you won’t be the same. You will like different things, you will sound different, you will look different, and have a different temperament.” That would be utterly terrifying…I think that’s what contemplating regeneration must be like for the Doctor. So there’s an element of that, but because it was played that way the last time we wouldn’t play it the same way this time – that would just be wrong.

Hmmm, so its the same, but different. Very helpful.  But it does make sense, when Ten became Eleven we were given all the angst and “I don’t want to go” and it worked, mostly, so to do it again would be a let down, but to brush over the fact that whats going on is incredibly traumatic would be an outright sin.

The key to this regeneration seems to be based around humour, and remembering the good times we had with Matt’s Doctor.

There’s a lot of humour in this one, because Matt’s Doctor has been a funny Doctor, and if you’re going to make people miss him then just remind them how funny he is…he should be as he was, and what you will miss is not him crying – I think the danger is if you cry the audience don’t. It’s about “This is the last hurrah. These days will not come again.

So it seems we can expect things to end with some laughs and a bang rather than a teary eyed whimper, and then there is the small matter of having no more regenerations left but still regenerating. It seems we still have plenty more questions to be answered come December 25th.

What are your thoughts, how do you think the regeneration should go, should it include an explanation for the familiar face or not? (I have my own theory, but that’s a story for another day) Leave your musings and ramblings below so we might all be enriched by them, or at least spark a lively debate.


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26 Responses to Moff Talks Matt’s Regeneration

  1. avatar DonnaM says:

    Thank God it won’t be like Tennant’s! I didn’t mind “I don’t wanna go” so much as that whole over-extended Russell T Davies Farewell flipping Tour. I loved that Doctor but by the time he actually got around to regenerating I was about ready to yell “will you just bloody well get on with it!” at the screen.

    As for the familiarity of the new face – no detailed explanation, please! I still like the suggestion, made before by far cleverer people than me, of a brief “Oh, bit of a Roman profile this time!” nod and wink rather than any complicated theory that will confuse anyone who doesn’t remember “The Fires of Pompeii”.

    Tryng to deal with these things can actually make them more glaringly obvious: remember Martha Jones’s identical cousin?

  2. avatar TonyS says:

    Even if Matt did get a tour of all his previous companions, he’s only had three!

    • avatar DonnaM says:

      Even if there’d only been three last time it would still have annoyed me; it smacked too much of a writer revelling in his own cleverness – which I don’t dispute RTD has, by the way – and that totally spoiled the poignancy of the moment.

      • avatar TonyS says:

        Yes that is what annoyed me about those scenes.

  3. avatar Rick714 says:

    I didn’t mind Tennant’s farewell tour at all! What bugged me was him whining in the cafe to Wilf, then having a tantrum while Wilf’s stuck in the box and then crying and whining again at the very end. Every other Doctor in history had acquitted himself with dignity at the end but the whining and sobbing of Tennant really was–I thought–an unfitting end to a great run.

    Here’s hoping Smith goes out with class.

  4. avatar Rick714 says:

    ….and as a side note—Smith has kept his entire entourage around him so there’s really no one to revisit. He still hangs around with the Victorian Three and as for Amy and Rory, they’re not supposed to ever be able to see him again anyway–although that never stopped Rose….

    • Does no one remember Craig or Madge at all?

  5. avatar dr jon says:

    I think when the current dr changes he will be the one to put a brave face on it with a joke and wry smile,but underneath it all he will be afraid.For one he won’t even be sure if he will be able to regenerate, and two what to exspect from it.The dr is old and he may well have been at piece with the idea of death,but he will have the thought of finding his missing home planet in his mind and putting things right so he has got to carry on.This would be his bitter sweet pill.

  6. avatar TimeChaser says:

    The angst was laid on extremely thick last time, so yes, I would like Matt to go out better. Eccleston went out with dignity and he only had one season!

    There was no explanation given to why Six looked like Maxil, so let’s not have any complicated time-wimey reasons why Capaldi looks like two other people. We don’t want the new Doctor to start in a continuity quagmire.

  7. avatar castellanspandrel says:

    DT’s farewell tour did go on far too long (Joan Redfern’s grand-daughter signing books, anyone?), but I liked the fatalism of it – his relief on finding he’s still alive only to hear the four knocks, his self-sacrifice for Wilf, the Ood singing him to ‘his sleep’ (bleak, that) the Tardis going on fire as he regenerates (the latter looks quite disturbing when you see photos of it).
    The Christmas (New Year) specials don’t often get that dark, so I found it ballsy.

    His chat with Wilf in the cafe beforehand was smart writing, explaining why regeneration matters and why it’s still the death of a Doctor.

    I much preferred it to CE’s rubbish joke about dogs with no noses, and I don’t want a comedy regeneration. I want to be moved and to feel that this matters.

    • avatar TimeChaser says:

      I like David more than Chris, and yet “You were fantastic. And you know what? So was I.” is better than a whimpering “I don’t want to go.”

      • avatar castellanspandrel says:

        Yeah, ‘I don’t want to go’ isn’t much of a line, I agree, but I’m not a fan of Chris’s attempts at comedy.

        Bad Wolf/Parting of the Ways is one of my favourite stories ever, but it was clear that Billie and DT weren’t in the room at the same time as each other for filming.

        • avatar Nath Kyle says:

          “Geronimo!” is a good final line, It’s more upbeat than “I don’t want to go” and frankly, would make me for one, grin ear to ear!

  8. What I’m waiting to see is how they explain this whole Matt being the 13th regeneration as I think that is going to be the big twist here

  9. avatar Christine says:

    I loved DT’s farewell tour, especially Joan Redfern’s granddaughter! In fact I just watched it again a few weeks ago, and I still enjoy it. Admittedly I also enjoyed CE’s ending, specifically the fantastic sentence. So, having got that out of the way what about the next regeneration? I’m not sure it has to be comedy, but it certainly should be different from what has been done before releatively recently. How about a choice of appearances? Romana got to do that in Destiny of the Daleks, but I don’t think a Doctor ever has – except for the Second Doctor to a certain extent (although the Time Lords didn’t let it happen in the end).

  10. avatar Whovian Leap says:

    I’d like the Great Moff to turn the regeneration on its head. Not literally, but then again why not? I’d like him to be a bit more innovstive. Can I share my thoughts in a bit more detail in my post “Regenerating the regeneration!”

  11. avatar castellanspandrel says:

    Intense, bizarre dream I had last night re: the regeneration (please bear with me):

    I dreamt I was both watching the story on TV while also being in the story as a companion. There were 2 other companions, one of whom was Turlough (?).

    The Cybermen had tried to take over Earth and convert all us humans into Cybermen, as per. They’d begun to convert the 11th Dr, too.

    The climax of the story (where I came in as viewer and participant) was on a busy train station platform in London. There was utter pandemonium, as there were some remaining, defeated and mortally wounded Cybermen going up in flames in a burst of energy as innocent people were trying to flee in a mad rush.

    The companions and I were trying to find the Cyberman that was the Doctor, knowing that he might regenerate to survive the Cyber-conversion process, but it was impossible to tell which one was him – was that figure on the left burning up with regeneration energy or the energy released by the failed conversion process, for example?

    I ran up the stairs, past an older man I didn’t recognise, who was sitting on a bench reading a paper, quite relaxed. It took me a minute to realise who he was, but I turned back, and he smiled at me.

    It was him. It had happened.

    -As you’ll gather for obvious reasons, all the above isn’t my prediction for what will happen in Time of the Doctor at all. I just thought it’d be fun to share my fevered nonsense with you.

    Merry Christmas!

  12. avatar Howard Railton says:

    I just hope that the regeneration is pertinent to the plot, not some nonsensical locked in a glass cabinet, a la Tenant/Davies, fiasco that meant that the whole epic Master and Time Lords return all seemed a waste of time. This time, there isn’t the episode duration to mess around like that. Moffat’s only got an hour to wrap it all up. The problem with such a brief show to end an entire era on is that Moffat obviously wants to cram too much into that hour, trying to give us a run through of Smith’s greatest monsters and remembering the humorous Doctor Matt Smith created etc. Fair enough, but, basically, he should try to keep the plot elements relevant. Lets face it the return of the Zygons was great in Day of the Doctor but hardly seemed that relevant to the epic saving Gallifrey storyline, though a nice little semi invasion story in itself. It felt a bit of padding at times like all that helicopter the TARDIS etc., and could have been dropped and we could have had only half an hour or 45 minutes. That’s ridiculous when you think how shows used to develop in the old days with epic 6 parters crafter by Hulk and Dicks etc. The Zygons should have been made to be more relevant, not just something that might or might not influence Hurt’s Dr’s decision. It would have been far more effective to have kept the pressure up by having Daleks storming the Time Lord city at the end rather than forgetting all about them after their brief appearance earlier on in the hour and a quarter duration. Also, it didn’t chime with previous comments in Stolen Earth that Davros was at the destruction of Gallifrey, where was he this time?

    For Smith’s finale I just hope that Moffat does better but I’m already suspecting we’re doomed to disappointment!

    The sad thing is that there looks now to be no encounter with Smith and Davros or the Master. This is a shame for fans when you think of the stories that Moffat commissioned for Smith many of which were woefully inadequate, like Curse of the Black Spot. Many were hopelessly muddled and confused attempts such as the last episode of Smith’s second series. Couldn’t they get someone in to script edit that rubbish? Also, the whole Silence arc seems largely full of plot holes as does the ludicrously protracted and embarrassing River Song yawn fest.

    In summation, Smith was a really good actor and perfect casting for the part but the drivel he was served up with was generally sub-standard with only a few exceptions each year. His extraordinary talents were squandered by Moffat.

    • His extraordinary talents were squandered by Moffat.

      If this is the case, how do you know that he has “extraordinary talents”?

      • avatar Mark Lenton says:

        I would imagine because of the ‘few exceptions each year’ that Howard mentions..

    • avatar Simon Diver says:

      Epic six parters ? I’ve almost finished watching the pertwee era and I really wish a lot of those 6 parters had been 4 parters. Would have made the whole experience a lot more fun without all the pointless padding

      • avatar TonyS says:

        I can think of one epic six-parter and it was written by Terry Nation. I refer of course to “Genesis of the Daleks”. There are a few good six-parters. But I tend to agree with Simon that most needed trimming.

      • avatar castellanspandrel says:

        Yes. A case in point:

        Just rewatched Frontier in Space. The pacing of the last 3 episodes is fine, but they could’ve condensed the first 3 into 1 episode by cutting escapes/recaptures and the Dr getting sent to the prison on the moon (which slows it down considerably). In other words, would’ve made a terrific 4-parter.

        Now on Horror of Fang Rock, another decent story but one which could’ve been told in 3 or maybe 2 episodes.

  13. avatar Somniferous167 says:

    I can understand why some may have disliked Tennant’s farewell, I, however, think it was brilliantly done considering The Waters of Mars took ten to the brink of corruption as “the time-lord victorious”. All things considered Davies did a fantastic job summing up the emotional roller coaster that was Ten(nant), and by having him revisit everyone and drag it on as long as he could, they highlighted what Ten did best: save the big bang for the last moment.

    Someone commented on the scene with Tennant and Wilf in the cafe being too whiny, as well as the whole “tantrum” thing showing a lack of pride. I disagree, consider the conversation Ten and Wilf had while hiding from The Master, where Wilf says that what he has to say isn’t important because he’s old. Consider Tennant – knowing that his time is coming to an end – sitting across from the only man to ever track him down in a day, knowing that he may never understand how he managed to do it, not knowing what makes Wilf so special until that one moment, the four knocks on the glass door, and the realiztion that he was found by Wilf to be.. well in a sense, executed. Wilf, the human I say is the most like the doctor, saved a man’s life not because he thought the doctor would save him, but because that is who he is: Doctorly. I see the doctor’s “tantrum” as an expression of self-loathing and I see his actions following to be full of pride. After all, Wilf said that his life is not as important than the Doctor’s, but to The Doctor every living thing is just as important as himself.

    As for Smith, I hope to see something equally as emotional, but far more quirky. Quirkiness and humor are the defintive traits to Smith’s doctor. However, I do hope to have that one perfectly delivered line that Smith always seems to have; that one line that sends chills down your spine, that “I am talking!” moment that shows the soldier within.

    Unlike many others, I have faith in Moffat’s abilities. His ideas are complex in their development, smooth in their delivery and lasting in impact. I have faith that this regeneration will be fantastic.

  14. avatar dr jon says:

    I have enjoyed most of matt smith’s storys and will be sad to see him go, and i think moffat last few storys have been very well done. I also think the plot twist for the regeneration will keep us all talking and passing judgement until peter capaldi has his full first season.I have a feeling the new regenerated dr will be on borrowed time in some way and must find the timelords planet before the dr will be no more.

  15. avatar Brain of Morbius says:

    I hope to see more. Of Moffat the writer and less of Moffat the show runnet in Matt’s Farwell. His best episodes are difenantly behind him. The story line and plot holes in the last 3 seasons have been impossible to ignore. Moffat should go before the end of Capaldi’s first season.

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