Doctor Who: watch The Night Of The Doctor mini-episode here

Trailer Louisa Mellor 14 Nov 2013 - 12:00

It's here! A seven-minute mini Doctor Who episode, entitled The Night Of The Doctor...

"The 50th Anniversary features Matt Smith, David Tennant and a mysterious incarnation played by John Hurt. Only one appears in the mini episode, The Night Of The Doctor. But which?"

Let's find out, shall we? Watch the seven minute mini-prequel to next Saturday's The Day of the Doctor below.

The Night Of The Doctor on BBC iPlayer.


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Over to the iPlayer, back soon.
Love you guys


(RichieC has just exploded)

Blimey. That's made my day.

<speechless> :-0 </speechless>
Going to watch again...

Blimey. My mouth hung open when the Doctor appeared!


Shitting crikey. Seven minutes of Who heaven. Wheaven, even.

Now that's what I'm talking about!

Adored the references to the big finish 8th doctor stories as well. Finally we saw HIM again. Sooooo happy.

If the internet is destroyed now,it's the Time Wars fault.That's a proper prequel,i think.This is like some kind of parallel universe or something and he's still got it.

I luv Stevin Moffatt. IDST. XXXXX.

That was brilliant!!!! What a set up!

Shitting crikey doesn't begin to cover it. Watched the whole thing grinning like a loon. Then ran round the office telling all the Who fans to go to Iplayer! It's like Christmas has come early, and I suspect Mister Moffat has a few more Christmases up his sleeve for us.

HOLY COW! Who saw that coming????

Oh my goodness, yes!! Best surprise ever!

My lunch literally fell out of my mouth.

Erm. Well. Erm. Blimey. Well played Moff, well played

As I yank, I wish I had the proper command of the queen's english to convey my pleasure at the 8th's proper send off. So I'll just say blimey that was crackin' good!!!!!!!

Where's my brown paper bag.
I'm still hyperventilating!!!!!

I just shat in my pants.

Anyone who doubts that Sir Steven of Moffat is the right person to helm the 50th needs to just watch this.

Pure unadulterated fanboy heaven!

(I'm on to my 5th viewing)

So glad I was up late here in Australia! So many Aussie fans will be asleep! Haha! That was amazing!

I put it on thinking it won't be, I should just let that idea go - and then... HOLY COW!!! They did it - Thanks for listeneing Steven Moffat, it was a lovely tribute to a great Doctor - and it's Paul's birthday today, what better way to celebrate.

I love that some of his Expanded Universe companions just became official canon.

Very good imitation of an Englishman, although i would review the beginning of the sentence. Presumably "as A yank?" lol

not I .... I caught it! OMG!

That was bloody amazing! Paul McGann was fantastic!

Oh! Ooooooohhhhhh! O_O

By all that is and was and could ever be holy!

THAT was 15 *billion* levels of awesome-ness!

I love so much how, in just six minutes, Paul McGann got a chance to be properly Doctor-y on screen. Charming and angry and whimsical and sad and just BRILLIANT.

How appropriate that it's his birthday today, because I don't know if I could imagine a better gift for an actor. Or for the fans.

Perhap's being American isn't the reason his grasp of English is bad... :-D

Has anyone got a mop? I need to clean up all this squee!

As I yank, I wish I could I could use both hands for typing...

Introducing John Hurt as "The War Doctor". dammit, not the Valeyard like i hoped!

I screamed so loudly when he said not the one you were expecting! They even have him looking like he does in Dark Eyes, and change the vortex to look like his era! I know I slag him off a lot but MOFFAT, I LOVE YOU!

Unbelieveable how you can do so much in 6 minutes, that was amazing!!!!!! away to change pants..

I would be roaring my lungs out with joy!!! If I wasn't in the office...

Loved it but, can't help thinking it would make a good opening to the 50th instead. Or if McGann was going to be used, let him have some 50th screen time with 10 and 11.

Fantastic. I watched Brain of Morbius just a couple of weeks back too.

grasp of something anyway

Freaking awesome!

Sorry im completely unaware of the Who expanded universe can anyone shed some light as to what just happened!?

That's 'yanking' for you!

The expanded universe stuff was McGann naming all his companions from the audio stories.

Absolutely amazing!



Moffat I could kiss you!

"Will it Hurt?" / "Yes" - I see what you did there! Damn, I'm going to have to watch this so many times.

Glad it wasn't just me who did that then! Actually got to watch it with a fellow Whovian. It is interesting to watch Who with someone else who gets ALL the references. Clearly my work day has now been scuppered - nice one Mr Moffat!

I think one of the sisterhood may have been Andrew Scott in drag... :D

What do you look like now?

Yes! Watched the brain of Morbius a few weeks ago and remembered that Moff said go back to your DVDs and watching the Brain i thought - this is probably useful to explain some stuff in the 50th anniversary. And know what? It did! Totally unexpected appearance of the Doctor! I could scream if I wasn't among people!


My head has just literally exploded! Wow. Just, wow!

R.I.P The Internet.

In the words of the Ninth "FANTASTIC!" It has finally put closure on the Eighth Doctor, a much needed, drastic and heroic end to an underrated regeneration. Roll on the Special. Moffatt has balls.

Since it's a show about time travel, I don't see why the stories have to be in order. One of these days, it would be great to give Paul McGann a story. It doesn't have to be a special event or a significant occurrence for the Doctor, just any story from any point in the Doctor's life from when he happened to be Number 8.

In the meantime however, Thanks x 1000000!

Its so cool isnt it I love the big finish stuff and the 8th doctor ones were well up there with the best. The Lucie Miller ones in particular were so good, so nice to see her become official canon.

That alone. ... guarantees I'm not disappointed with the 50th specials

Awesome x infinity......

But why didn't he regenerate when he crashed?

I sneaked it in work, wasn't expecting what happened and almost bust a rib trying to contain the fanboy squeeeees! That was... oh my... the full power not of a timelord but an Ascended Fan finally unleashed!

Tremendous. In this day and age, to keep that quiet and just release it at a lunchtime...just magnificent sleight of hand from Moffat, and had a man in his late thirties yelp out loud in the office. Here's hoping we get just as many surprises (come on, 5 seconds of Eccleston isn't much to ask) in the 50th special.

Cos he was dead? I'm no expert but I think regeneration has to occur when the Doctor is dying, not after he is completely dead. Or something. Like I said, I'm far from an expert.

Well they were uncredited, so maybe...

Sir, I believe you have hit upon something important there. We shall see...

Y'know... now that the initial rush has died down I'm a little sad. Not because of the minisode (which was fantastic!) but because McGann just showed us how damn good he could have been in the role. We had an inkling from Big Finish of course but there was always that thought of if it'd translate to the screen. Now that we know it does there's this huge lump of 'what could have been' that we'll never get to see.

I think Doctors Six and Seven were both dead when they regenerated, but there was a reference in Turn Left that implies death stops regeneration.

Meh, tiny thought.

Nah, this is better. The minisodes can be for the hardcore fans, the episode must appeal to the widest possible audience. As much as I love McGann too many of the current fan base won't know who he is and when they're already introducing a previously unknown Doctor it'd be way too complicated and risky to start with another.

I now can't envisage the 50th without Hurt's regeneration. I reckon they'll try and fit it in somehow, Ecclestone or no Ecclestone.

But isn't it lovely that he finally got his moment. I felt more happy for him - and, oddly, proud of him in a way - than anything. And all his Big Finish work just got legitimized into the universe.

I do hope he's there. I guess we won't know until it's broadcast. If he is in it, Moffat would gleefully lie about it, as would Eccleston. But yeah, this is my wishful thinking.

OMG, OMG, I am speechless. In 6 minutes we got a Whovian Fanboy dream. What we learnt in this short episode could be debated for weeks, but we only have 11 days left to wait!

Genuine thanks for the non-spoiler way you're annoucing this.

Well only a few weeks ago McGann was telling the press that he was definitely not involved in the 50th so who knows...

where in the Universe are you? There's only 9 days here.

Was it just me or did anyone else notice that the reflection of John hurt was of a younger John hurt in his 40s ,letting us know just how long JH was fighting the time war before the events of the day of the doctor

Oddly, this...

Not to mention all of season 6... Regeneration seems malleable. 10 could direct energy to a bioreceptacle, 11 dies when shot during regeneration (despite resolution of finale, river states this as fact).

I just posted this on the story about Rose Tyler's role in the 50th, but since this article is probably getting all the attention now I thought I'd repeat myself here:

Just reading a Wikipedia article on The Time War (as you do), I noticed a reference to The Moment, which is apparently what the Doctor used to end the Time War, according to the comics, anyway. Could this be "the moment" Rose is referring to?

At last, perfect closure to the most underrated Doctor of all. I've never been a fan of Moffat's tenure as showrunner but the moment McGann appeared in this, my heart jumped, all the dislike of recent Who left and I felt like a giddy child. I'm now so stoked for the special (shame Eccleston turned down a chance to appear never know!!)

This proves that there is a measure of Justice in the universe. Thank you, Mr. Moffatt- he more than deserves this moment.


Well, given that they've just given us McGann's regeneration without Hurt's direct involvement (other than his voice) I'd say it's entirely likely.

Yeah - I haven't really seen many people mentioning this yet, but it definitely was him as a younger man.

How bad must the time war be if someone would rather die than step into a tardis

Well, technically, we never saw Troughton actually turn into Pertwee, so I'm sure there's workarounds for Hurt to Eccleston.

The War Doctor? Doesn't that make him 'the Field Medic'?

Doesn't have much of a ring to it.

In 6 minutes McGann outclasses the last two Doctors and the Moff proves he can still write drama without all that manic shouting, nonsense and childish stuff. If the special turns out to be of this quality, I'll be very happy. Only minus- they didn't show the regeneration properly!

Exactly my reaction. What a waste though that he hasn't been able to be the doctor on screen more. He should come back for a two doctors special.

Glad I didn't imagine it

It was little touches I liked, like the way the Tardis exterior shell is a bit knackered and dirty and the way the 8th Doctors outfit is a dirty and worn version of the victorian style clothes he wore in the TV Movie. I like the idea of the 8th Doctor refusing to fight, the line "its not my war" was very interesting, maybe he felt guilty because its kind of his fault for making the Daleks exist in the first place?

If anything, it was a clever way to make you (well, me at least) think of anyone *but* who we got. Well played, everyone.

I agree with you McGann was brilliant in this.. but I disagree Tennant and Smith don't have their own serious moments of quality without all the shouting- which is where they shine best. Hopefully the special will highlight that too!

... but then it regenerated into ...

I'm pretty sure this was how the BBC announced it, not DoG, but it was pretty sneaky!

Hear hear! Paul McGann is one of the world's most underrated actors though, so it's hardly a surprise that he outclassed Schoolboy smith and twattish tennant. Neither one can act convincingly unless it involves being an "angry" Doctor. Eight showed that love, mercy and passion comes first, and rage last. Hopefully, he'll have another cameo again soon!

You're right. Even though his image has popped up from time to time, McGann is still lesser known (mores the pitty).

I expect nobody mentioned it because they didn't want to add any spoilers.

I'm a teacher and I just shouted very loud "OH MY GOD" when Moffat appeared. A few of the students looked mildly concerned!

Plus this way he could say 'I'm not involved in the 50th anniversary special' (because it was the prequel..) .. white lies!!

I shouted very, very loud "OH MY GOD" when McGann appeared!!!!

Me too. Holy sheet.

Richie C - More than agree with you and I am literally in knots at having to wait another week for the programme.
On a small side note. Now that we know that Hurt is a 'forced' regen that probably does not count to the overall total (assumption being the mother of you-know-whats), is there now the possibility that we will see Hurt regenerate into Eccelstone at the end of the 50th birthday ep?

I said something of a slightly more foul mouthed verbosity, and woke up my housemates. That's what I call a whovian fail.

have started a facebook campaign to bring back Paul McGann for a whole flashback episode.. if we all join then the BBC might listen.. search for Doctor Who Bring Back Paul Mcgann

I screamed like a little schoolgirl when I saw McGann! This gives me hope that we may see Ecclestone in the 50th, Moffat and McGann have both lied to us so why not Ecclestone, cannot wait! And now for the science of Doctor who this evening, the doctor who goodness just keeps on coming in the run up to the anniversary!

So, does this now mean that Matt Smith is number 12 and Capaldi the last Doctor?

I'm a teacher, I did this in front of a class. They looked mildly concerned!

I count tennant as twice so to Matt is the last doctor but it is all speculation and we all have our own theories

I was thinking this too, maybe a 'flashback' episode and they can shoot it as a 'Doctor-Lite' episode in the vein of Blink etc. It would be good to see him again in the role.

Maybe this means that its a reset back to 1

Well every other campaign has done so well since 1996....

I have never squeed so hard in my life. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH

True but the word mcgann in the comments is a much bigger spoiler than younger reflection of hurt as everyone already knows j hurts in the special

That was my first thought too, after my head stopped spinning. I've only watched the modern WHO, so Eccelstone was my first Doctor: I've always hoped he would be in this and now it seems there is a good chance, YAY! Also, I imagine quite a lot of people were introduced to the Doctor Who universe by him, so he really should be in it.

And me!

And me!

things are different now.. the world loves Who and McGann has just showed again how great he is...

This gives me hope for the 50th. If this is what they are cutting out and putting on the red button they must be confident in the Day of the Doctor.
If they had simply put this scene onto the main episode it would have gone a long way to please the fans and live up to the hype. Surely they must have bigger surprises instore?

You know what? Since the Christmas Special was a new thing for the revival of Doctor Who, now with the revival of this Doctor, we should have another new tradition.

Every Christmas, we should have a Christmas Special *and* a McGann Doctor Who story to help fill in some blanks on screen.

This few minutes was more than enough to remind me of something I already knew, how great he was with the show even with just one appearance.

I'm not sure it was cut out I think this was done on purpose so that Paul mcgann could truthfully say he wasn't in the 50 th special ,mmmmmmm Chris eccleston also said that. maybe there will be a sequel minisode too

Well... technically, McGann isn't in the 50th...
There's one more minisode coming up, I wonder if that'll bring Hurt-Nine?

Couldn't we see a spin off with McGann as The Doctor?

It's odd to see that a Doctor in wartime seemingly survives longer than a Doctor in peace time. Given that 11 had apparently been around for over a hundred years and hasn't aged, how long did the Time War last as the War Doctor's reflection is rather young?

Perhaps they use temporal weaponry which occasionally leaks.

Something to do with the Time War? Dodgy continuity? (Which isn't exactly a cardinal sin in Who, it's part of it's charm!)Maybe this regeneration is different because it was sort of forced?

But he tried to stay out of the Time War

That was ... that was .... that was ...


YES. Yes we should. The Big Finish stories are AMAZING, but i'd love to see some more on-screen McGann POWERHOUSE Acting. I think we should TOTALLY get a DoG Kickstarter thing going for this.


It's to do with the name. Capaldi is the 12th person to call himself "The Doctor", but 13th Incarnation of that person. Imagine if The Master took one regeneration off to call himself The Milkman, and then reverted to The Master again. You'd have the 1st Master, 2nd Master...The Milkman...3rd Master...and so on.

That's who John Hurt's playing. The Milkman.

I was convinced I'd see John Hurt, that would make most sense right. I was stunned at McGann. And makes so much sense. Wonderful. So glad they kept it under wraps somehow.

Maybe he still will! We don't know!

As I understand it, he chose to regenerate into a warrior specifically to engage in the time war, so Hurt's Doctor is the warrior. His reflection is that of a younger version of himself.

Belatedly realised a favourite bit of this. McGann's Doc had a hair cut! The Doctor, wanderer through time and space and rescuer of planets and civilisations, checked in for a quick trim at some point to smarten up post-regen. Imagine how much knitting he would need to kill the time if he had turned up to a local barbers at 10am on a Saturday!

Brilliant! This was just what I needed after handing in a particularly stressful Uni assignment. Thank you Steven Moffat! Absolutely brilliant! Just made a complete witch of a day completely magical!

He could have ended the time war as a young Hurt Doctor and then lived on a long time before finally becoming Ecclestone.

Sure, not cut out per-say, but if they knew that Ecceleston turned down the chance to be in the 50th but that they could get McGann you'd think they would make part of the main episode to make up for it.
Unless it was only filmed recently once the 50th was already mainly in the can. Which is possible given that John Hurt wasn't around to film the regeneration scene.

Yeah sorry I meant McGann had lied to us about being involved at all, I'd be imperiously happy to see Ecclestone in either the next minisode or the 50th, I just think it's more likely that if we were to see him it would be towards the end of the 50th as The War Doctor's story ends and he regenerates...

After watching this it seems more possible than ever before that we will see Eccleston, even if it's just a few seconds of CGI.

However, I'm even more convinced that there's some Tom Baker in there. We've had so many nods to his era already, Zygons, his scarf, and now the Sisterhood of Karn. Again, even if it's only some CGI trickery-pokery then bring it on.

9 days and counting...

This is promising to say the least!

Arghh!! There's only 2 e's in Eccleston! That's why he's not doing the 50th. Because no Who fan can spell his name correctly!

9 excessively long days and slowly counting you mean?

ARGGHHH!!!! Sky news have spoiled it for me! No point watching it now

Oh but there is, there is anyway!


Still, Children In Need tomorrow and there's something going out then. I doubt they will upstage this mini-sode though!

Hurt's not a forced regen, Eight's revival was temporary. He needed to regenerate or he would die, the regeneration was just guided.

Let's not forget Day of the Doctor is also a continuation of Name of the Doctor in which we already saw - via trickery-pokery - all 11 Doctors during Clara's odyssey. So there's precedent.


Well that's the tricky bit. Eight's revival was temporary but not up to him (remember The Master choosing not to regen) pretty much. Given the history of the Sisterhood they may be able to slip in an extra regen. Saying that though, the Second Doctors forced regen did count to the overal number of regens........ but then you could be right that he had no choice and ........ ahhhhhhhh screw it! I'm gonna wait for next week.

DW is too much of a cash cow now for the BBC for them NOT to demand they write in something which either removes, ignores or resets the regeneration rule.

It was like seeing Hurt from his days in Alien.

I really wish someone would give Paul McGann a fair crack of the whip. He's got such a Doctorish look and a fantastic actor. He didn't deserve to be in a cancelled pilot for an American audience. He should have been the one to kick start a new series.

Just to clear up a little confusion about this "Regeneration". Those not
familiar with the 8th Doctor Adventures by Big Finish, The Sisterhood
of Karn (Not the other Sisters we encountered in Pompeii) are in the
8th Doctor's story arc for quite some time.
They offer "Resurrection"
(they did return Morbius to life), Rejuvenation and immortality. These
skills were learned and altered from TimeLord knowledge.
Tho I can
see where this episode has had little time to explain the above and
opted for the word "Regeneration" without spinning off on a
tangent...tho again...we all love a Doctor related tangent!
Hope this helps guys!

F*** f*** f*** was all I could shout at this true magnificence.

Thank you for not giving anything away DoG, I didn't know what to expect.
Thank you grand Moff for this, and a very big extra special thank you to the legendary Paul McGann for just stepping right into this, totally committed after 17 years, and playing a blinding Doctor, looks great, plays it brilliantly and also kept it a secret.

Time for another watch I think.....
Roll on the 23rd, although this was more than enough for me to cope with......

nice surpise. http :// tardis.wikia. com/wiki/Sisterhood_of_Karn -caught up

that was one heck of a six and a half minutes.

In this day and age for someting like this was kept secret.
Fantasic to see McGann in the role again and lovely touch being it is his birthday.
Hope he does some more...

Just to clear up a little confusion about this "Regeneration". Those not
familiar with the 8th Doctor Adventures by Big Finish, The Sisterhood
of Karn (Not the other Sisters we encountered in Pompeii) are in the
8th Doctor's story arc for quite some time.
They offer "Resurrection"
(they did return Morbius to life), Rejuvenation and immortality. These
skills were learned and altered from TimeLord knowledge.
Tho I can
see where this episode has had little time to explain the above and
opted for the word "Regeneration" without spinning off on a
tangent...tho again...we all love a Doctor related tangent!
Hope this helps guys!

Yeah, I'd expect that to be more likely. Plus, it'd be awesome. But even if not, we have this, which is still damn cool.

Blown away.

That was brilliant!!!

Now wouldn't it be cool if for the 50th anniversary we get to see Hurt regenerate into Eccleston and Smith regenerate early into Capaldi at the same time. A double onscreen regeneration would blow my mind.

I just watched it. I really dislike the direction Moff has taken the show over his tenure, however there is no way the special can't be good. I am so excited!

I think they will address the regen limit in the 50th my view is smith is the 13th body (I view tennant as having had two) and the sisterhood may be the easiest way of the doctor getting more lives.

In this clip I saw the elixir as a kick start lick the wee guy that kick started pertwees regeneration into Tom Baker, it's still a full regeneration

Can I just ask, who is this Andrew Scott guy? I have never heard of him before and I have followed the Dr for over 20 years.

The circle is complete :)

Or 1984!

They have something of a history with the Doctor. The Sisterhood of Karn originally featured in the 4th Doctor adventure The Brain of Morbius. Great to see McGann encounter them on screen at last...

Don't you yanks have your own shows? Stop stealing ours. Remember that tea party you threw for us back in 1776? :)

Yeah, they currently trot out mini-eps for Children in Need featuring the "current" Doctor. Nuts to that; you'd raise more for charity from Doctor Who fans with a 7 minute episode with an Old Doctor.

I think that was Colin, tbh. Even though I loved Colin. Not many other Dr's have taken out a whole crew of Cybers, by hand.

Well they did try to shoe horn in a pt muslim companion.....

Well I wouldn't go that far, but he more than outclassed that poncey Smiff fella.

Why is he so quick to decide he wants to be a warrior? I know they didn't have the time to flesh things out, but it seems like a bit of a quick 180.

Yes but technically it's still a regeneration life cycle, so er, technically, Capaldi will be the last regeneration (I know, they will write their way out of it).

Well..... I dislike Moff's tenure, but that could be down to Smiff, but the minisode as me pumped.

Oh most certainly. There's gonna have to be a retcon or cheat within the next couple of series if not the birthday special. It's just a case of how they go about it without the entire internet melting under a wave of Whovian geek-rage!

They already addressed it when river song gave him all her regens surely?

Not really - too vague. Did they mean that all hers would be used up to stop him from dying (remember he did not regenerate, just repaired his existing body) or that all hers were transferred to him as one regeneration or that he got 11 more from her?

And remember she was a human, not a Gallifreyan so how many would she get? We just don't know.

Rather, How bad must the time lords be?

I'm a Doctor, but probably not the one you were expecting! Genius

I'm just glad The Doctor didn't raise his head when regenerating and shout K-A-R-N!

Unless the TIME war ages him very quickly. You know, cuz it is about TIME. Just a thought. :)

Certainly there's the time constant of the episode (and before he dies again) but I think, in story terms, he knows already that is what he is going to do.

Well, there is the possibility that the Time War sort of resets things (And we know how much Moffat likes to reset things!) so that Hurt's Doctor exists outside of time in the time-lock. Would enable McGann to do some more Who episodes.

I'm in my late 50's and I yelped! Some of us here are also who fans and the video made the rounds in short order. :):)

Great idea! Send it in.

The fact that you brits still have an amazing cultural significance trough out the world should bloat your imperalistic ego, why the sour comment? I'm an argentinian, and even though we didn't let you conquer us phisically; I'm still here, watching your show, in your page, commenting in your language; do you speak spanish? do you watch argentinian shows? no? Then I say you've won.

Physician, Heal thyself. Anyone think there is more weight to that? Isn't that a jibe at Jesus, he saved others why can't he save himself...? Am I clutching for straws that don't exist?

The zionist illuminati are spreading their liberal propaganda through Dr Who. Turning little kids away from god b taking the micky out of jesus and belittling him.

That would have just been epic.

Better than The War Horse though. :):) Would be funny if he turned into a panto horse. Oh no he didn't...oh yes he did.

For goodness sakes don't read David Cameron's latest soundbite in the news, then.

Also, Any relevance to the title? The Name of The Doctor was all about what has been done in the name of the doctor. Why is this The Night of The Doctor? Entering his dark period?

My Sonic's bigger than yours!

Has anyone thought that even though that McGann to John Hurt is technically the 8th regeneration Chris Ecclestone is still the 9th Doctor David the 10th. Going from what Matt's doctor said to John Hurt, that what he did was not in the name of the doctor (therefore not actually a doctor). I think the "line of doctors is still in tact. However, would I be wrong to assume that Matt is technically the 12th doctor as David had two regenerations?

I have a feeling that the 13 regeneration conundrum maybe explained going on something The Master said. He said the Time Lords resurrected him and therefore gave him and all the other Time Lords who forgot in the time war a whole new recycle of regenerations. I think that there is where the doctors problem with 13 regeneration is solved.

So good to see the Eighth! Paul got such a bad deal and his work on Big Finish has proved what a good Doctor he is. Would love to see him in more, sort of Lost Stories spin off with Sheridan Smith. Counting the days!!!

And I thought I couldn't get any more excited for next weekend...

OMG I want to see FULL ON Paul McGann Doctor Who episodes !!!

I have no words...........

Amazing. Just wished we'd had more of McGann as the Doctor. I sort of felt his delivery of lines was almost Ecclestone like….

This was utterly, epically brilliant. How fantastic for McGann that he got to play The Doctor again on TV.

Ask RichieC!

this has made me very happy and for 7 minute clip the beeb pulled out all the stops. big surprise, big budget, special effects and a small title sequence. i hope we see 9th re-gen in 10th as a bonus birthday treat even if its trickery and witchcraft am fine with that.

It's what you do with it that counts...

I don't know if anyone else has read this but on the BBC homepage now Moffat talks about the night of the doctor

Now for me the most interesting bit is this answer

Q: Finally, running a show like Doctor Who is always going to be hard work… But how much fun was it? Bringing back the Eighth Doctor?

SM: Oh, it was a complete treat! It was always frustrating that we never got to see more of him! The completist in me… the ‘box set man’ in me wants every box ticked and I wanted every regeneration scene! And we get to see the Paul McGann Doctor regenerate into the John Hurt Doctor! I love regeneration episodes – there’s nothing more exciting! And in the anniversary year we get to see two regenerations… That’s pretty cool!

Now I know that this can't be taken for granted, but surely Moffat can't say that and not show the Hurt into Ecclestone regeneration...

Can he?!

No, I think he maybe referring to Matts regeneration at Christmas

*That really should say fought in the time war.

This forced thing doesn't make sense. He died in the crash but before he could start to regenerate, he's resurrected by the Sisters of the Flame, who then prod his regeneration cycle in the 'right' direction. 8 regenerates into 9 (Hurt)

I thought this was made abundantly clear in the last season finale. Hurt isn't an incarnation who calls himself 'the Doctor' but he is an incarnation of the TImelord who calls himself the Doctor.

By sleight of hand do you mean lying? It's not all that impressive.... Though the episode was excellent

"Wanted every regeneration scene" .I agree for that to happen we have to see hurt to eccleston as well ,here's hoping

Wow! Hats off to an incredibly well acted, well written and well produced short. I hope this crucial exposition is not mistaken for a playful vignette due to its low key release. Damn, he's good as the Doctor! This little gem, the 50th and the Xmas special have the potential to escalate 'Grand Moff Tardis' to Cannon-Master status. He's very neatly knitted the past together. Lets hope he's created a nice big scarf that can be unravelled over the next 50! Anticipation and surprise within both the story and its delivery - I'm loving this whole journey. Ps. Note the door being opened for a Matron-Who in the future - not something I personally want to see.

That's the Surgeon General to you.

I'm surprised the internet hasn't crashed! Yes I've never seen the TV movie but I was surprised (on watching) by Paul McGann's short hair (I'm used to old pictures of him)...then again 11 had two outfits during his time (brown then purple) yes he did nothing with his hair but obviously The Doctor sometimes feels he doesn't always need to look exactly the same in one life. So pumped for the anniversary day!

I shat them too...and yes, I mean yours!

Hey McGann. Can I have my voice back? :)

Well in an interview about The Night of the Doctor Moffat said "the ‘box set man’ in me wants every box ticked and I wanted every regeneration scene" so i guess that kind of hints that we will see Hurt regenerate.

What a fantastic surprise! I had no idea McGann was in this. I literally spat coffee when he appeared.

"You're a Timelord!"
"Well actually I'm Half human on my mother's side"
"Oh OK - Get me off the ship"
Everybody lives!
Fade to black

So, McGann's Doctor dies in this minisode. Would that make Hurt's War Doctor #0 and Eccleston,s Doctor #1? Therefore Tennant would be #2, Smith #3 and Capaldi #4.
Just thinking out loud.

Ian Levine's just tweeted the suggestion of an Eighth Doctor mini-series. I think that's quite a viable idea. There'd be some talk of it confusing children who don't know what Doctor they're watching, but I think that's bollox. Kids adjust. The only thing that would probably scupper it is budget. The Beeb is a bit strapped for cash of late, and heady days when RTD could just pump out spin-offs (Torchwood, SJA) at the drop of a hat may be long gone.

Geek rage because of continuing the show in spite of a one line from a 70s episode of the show, with a possible later mention somewhere? I think not.

I think the geek rage would come if the BBC decided "oh we had better cancel Doctor Who now because we've used up all his regenerations. Shame really, everyone loves it, but what can you do. Someone once wrote that it was 12 regeneration and thats it. Better shutter the studio until we can think up something else to make instead"

noticed that too. The Big Finish boys and girls must have been grinning from ear to ear

You are thinking too hard - if they wanted to do a series of McGann episode they could - there a long gap between The Movie and the minis ode to base stuff in. Its a dream but imagine if a couple years down the line Capaldi wanted a year off to do something else ......

[pedantic] Technically it's not a "prequel" because that's something that's shown "after" about events that happen "before". It's actually a prelude since it's shown before the 50th Anniversary special. The Beeb keep getting that wrong.

Funnily enough the book of "The Hobbit" is a prelude but the movie is a prequel. [/pedantic]

It works better as an isolated minisode. It would stall the action if you put it anywhere in the main episode since it is pretty standalone, and the events portrayed in it can be explained with a few lines of dialogue. It's purely a 50th Anniversary present to the fans. The "War Doctor" regenerating into the "9th Doctor" could also be accomplished with a few lines of a similar "epilogue" minisode featuring Hurt regenerating into Eccleston is perfectly feasible.

In fact, it could be done in exactly the same way as the "Hurt reflection", using old footage of Eccleston. The Beeb has a history of Doctor Regenerations in which one actor is unavailable - 6th into 7th (McCoy wore a "Colin" wig), 9th into 10th (Tennant had his hair CGI'd out) and now 8th into "War Doctor" (young footage of John Hurt).

An on-screen Regeneration of "War Doctor" into 9th is 100% achievable. I am now certain we will see it.

The idea of a Regeneration Limit has only been mentioned on-screen on four occasions - "Deadly Assassin", "Mawdryn Undead", "The Five Doctors" and "The Twin Dilemma", and in all cases the plot hinged on it. They also mentioned it in the TV Movie but in a fairly incidental way and since then it has been contradicted several times onscreen.

However for some reason I can't figure out, some Who fans want the 12-Regeneration limit set in stone, even if it means the series has a built-in "Sell By Date".

Circumventing this admittedly stupid piece of continuity should be a trivial exercise for Moffatt, yet certain fans will resist anything he comes up with. Why? Do they seriously want Doctor Who to end?

...So the Doctor doesn't end up fighting in the Time War

Between them the Time Lords and Daleks annihilate the whole of Creation
Everybody dies!
Fade to black
Continuity announcer: "Unfortunately that was the last series of Doctor week sees the return of 'Robin Hood', followed by the new 52-week series of 'The Voice'..."

Rule 1: Moffat Lies. It's 3 Regenerations this year. Mark my words!

Keeping it quiet, in the age of the internet, where scripts are leaked before films are made and people demand to know what happens in TV shows before they are aired, that's what impressed me - how many people must have knew about this (production team etc) and yet they didn't blab, should be admired - and encouraged. The fan reaction alone shows how much the surprise was part of the appreciation.

Correct me if I'm wrong but I think David Tennant's doctor has referred to himself as the 10th

let us not forget the Master has regenerated more than 12 times, been resurrected twice, taken human form, taken other bodies and been a weird snake thing so anything is possible really!

Fantastic idea, shame it hasn't already happened!

not nessecarily, the regen wasn't natural and may count as a "spare" and not part of his actual cycle of regens as he was already dead.

there was a reference in an 8th doctor novel that there would be 3 different 9th doctors, implying that multiple forms can exist in one regeneration like a 9.1, 9.2 ect. think of the watcher from logopolis as 5.1, or the valeyard as 13.1.

the second regeneration mentioned will supposedly be matt smith at christmas but we can live in hope.

Well 4 serials is as solid as classic who gets when it comes to lore - they really weren't terribly bothered by consistency, so if the limit gets mentioned in 4 different serials that's pretty much gospel.

BUT there's the obvious point. The limit seems to be clearly self-imposed. In the 5 Doctors it is only mentioned specifically because the Council offers the Master a full set of new regenerations if he goes in to rescue the Doctor/s (which the Master presumably ends up receiving, giving he held his end of the bargain, and unlike a certain other antagonist, is smart enough to realise that Rassilon's offer of 'immorality' would have an ironic downside. Also while it's doubtful that they ever thought of it, it would help explain why the writers seem to forget that the Anthony Ainslee Master isn't actually inhabiting a time lord body - he gets his timelord physiology back after 5 doctors, but regenerates into his old victim's appearance, similar to Romana's regeneration into the form of a character from the previous serial).

In fact, the Master is not only given a full set of regenerations from the 5 docs - in Utopia/Last of the Timelords trilogy, Tennant's doctor says that the Master was resurrected - implying the Time Lords could go so far as bringing back someone who has used up all their regens.

Then you get Logopolis (and the 4-parter that immediately precedes it; forget the name but they're basically an 8-parter with the Master's resurrection as the big twist halfway through). A sufficiently powerful timelord, even when dead, capable of inhabiting a location as a malevolent presence in order to lure a victim into a trap to allow him to return via taking over the character's body. Once you've written that into the lore, you can basically just resurrect the Doctor at will and say 'a wizard did it'.

Which means there's loopholes all through it. Probably as intended - set up to provide a potential plot hook if a future writer wanted to use it, but with plenty of ways of postponing it and clear all the way that it's a limit that can be circumvented (making it a plot challenge, not a show-stopper).

I suspect they'll use it as the through-plot for a season. Could even have some fun with the idea of the Doctor surviving for a season or two only by hijacking a non-timelord's body like the Master in Logopolis (presumably in a less dastardly manner - but would be a neat one-off to completely surprise the audience by making the previous season's 'big bad' the new Doctor).

Why doesn't anyone point out - 'uhh....Mr Pacifist....didn't you
quite deliberately blow up the Dalek's home planet, actually SAYING
gleefully as you did it 'So long, Davros. It hasn't been a pleasure.'?
Didn't that happen, like, one regeneration ago?

I've got nothing to do with the Time War, honest! Apart from blowing up Skaro, I guess..

Oh, AND I killed Davros a couple of times, but who hasn't?

Does going back in time to prevent the Daleks ever existing, on behalf of a secret Time Lord intelligence agency, count? It does? We're counting attempted genocide as an act of war these days?

Specifically instructing the Thals about how pacificism is wrong in the face of evil, in order to convince them to take the fight to the Daleks, all the way back in the show's 2nd episode with William Hartnell, the first time you ever meet the Daleks....but I WAS JUST DEFENDING MYSELF! Well yes I WAS on their territory, and they WERE at an infinitely inferior technological level back then (almost like they'd been put there to give the viewers a shock when they show up again later in the season having massively advanced in technology and invading Earth), And I WAS lying about needing parts for the TARDIS, so I guess I basically tried to get one civilisation (the Thals) to completely annihilate another (the Daleks) just so I had an excuse not to drop my companions off straight away.

Oh, I guess there is THAT speech by my 2nd incarnation at his trial, convincing the Time Lord council that they can't retain their policy of non-intervention given the growing threat from the Daleks in particular...

What do you mean 'it just doesn't seem very pacificist?' You know - 'pacifism' - blowing things into peaces! What do you mean that's not what 'pacificism' means?

I knew it! I told anyone who who'd listen at my place that he'd get a good appearance of some kind for the 50th . I did not believe any of the denials. But that was a FANTASTIC appearance. I want more, so much more!! Don't you think he is brilliant? They could do a whole spin off series!! But one slight niggle. Technically the regen happened off camera! We saw the beginning, and he doubles over, and then it happens off screen!!! Is it that hard to regenerate into a cgi face? Anyway I cannot contain my excitement. That really was a brilliant, fan-appreciating treat and Moffat et al deserve much kudos. I have my entire weekend planned around the 50th. Jelly babies for all!!

Wtf? Stop giving us a bad name.

Maybe there is another extra Doctor between Hurt & Eccleston?
I expect the self combustion of RichieC would make it onto the national news if it at the end of the special Hurt regenerated into Andrew Scott.

Make this happen!

Bring me knitting


This may get me lambasted, but I've always felt there was something missing from Moff's tenure on DW. It's never hit my gut like the RTD era did. However, I'm now thinking that I must not like Matt Smith on some level as this gave me that same chill I got with Tennant. Maybe I just don't believe Matt as the Doctor? Can that happen subconsciously?!

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