DOCTOR WHO - What's the secret behind the Twelfth Doctor's appearance? - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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DOCTOR WHO - What's the secret behind the Twelfth Doctor's appearance?

Christopher Morley gets deja vu from the Twelfth Doctor's appearance, and considers a couple of theory's behind the familiar face of Peter Capaldi.

A general feeling of 'haven't I seen him somewhere before?' seems to have swept through all of time & space since the Eleventh Doctor regenerated into his Twelfth incarnation. And well it should - the last time we saw that face it belonged to Caecilius of Pompeii, the marble man with bigger ambitions. The question now is how the devil the Doctor acquired it, and there are a number of possible answers the deeper we dig.

Perhaps the most coldly logical is that at the time of his Tenth self's meeting with him in the soon to be volcano-ravaged corner of the ancient world, 'Caecilius' was simply an alias as Twelve made inroads into investigating the Pyrovile, perhaps with the aid of a Chameleon Arch, smelling a rat & attempting to get close to Lucius Petrus Dextrus - shady High Priest of the Cult of Vulcan - to solve the ensuing mystery.

Consider then the idea that in the course of his digging around he discovered he may need the help of a past self and summoned Ten to assist in his nosing. With the younger of the two off looking into the ever deepening mystery, Twelve is then free to tie up any loose ends. Of course, the city itself is quickly turned into ash but he knows he'll be saved - the guilt from which may dog him throughout his own personal future, driving him on to ever more distant corners of the universe.

If we also look at the man said to have inspired Caecilius behind the scenes it sheds quite some light on the man the newest of the Doctors could become. Lucius Caecilius Iuncundus was a banker whose surviving financial records stop mere days before the big eruption - working as what was termed an argentarius (basically a middleman in auction situations) and whose wife & son also inspired names given to characters in 'The Fires Of Pompeii' - namely Metella & Quintus.

"One day this will be mine!"
With a sharp eye for even the smallest of details, Twelve could learn much from him. Maybe even to the extent of sharing some of his memories...and while we're here let's not forget our Roman deities. For a dip into theological waters reveals Vulcan to be the God of fire. Hardly a moot point when you ponder on the implications for the new man at the controls of the good old Type 40. Could we get to see him embody those qualities, maybe even raising such fear that he inspires/becomes him to a certain generation of the citizens of arguably history's greatest empire?

'Aha!' you may cry. But a paradox would be created in that to all intents & purposes (until the whole thing is fully explained) the man who adopts the Doctor & Donna Noble as the Gods of his household, with the TARDIS as their temple, would later become a God himself! Making a return visit to Pompeii (at a point before or after the eruption of Vesuvius) or even Rome (to whence Caecilius & family move post-haste following Ten's intervention) all the more appealing, no?

The sheer terror of those poor souls absolutely convinced that his appearance is sure to doom them all to fiery death ('volcano' believed to have originally been an expression denoting Vulcan's supposed anger, as quoted by the man who now looks like the Oncoming Storm) when in fact the only flame he intends to make use of is that which burns with an unrelenting drive to ride roughshod over his fellow Time Lords' non-intervention policy.

Throw in the fact that the First visited during the reign of Emperor Nero ('The Romans') & that's a lot of potential history to rake over, as you'd expect perhaps. There could even be some scope to revisit the man said to have fiddled while his imperial stronghold burned, somehow. But cast your mind a little further across the timelines - one man's, to be exact.

As yet it hasn't been established whether or not the Great Intelligence is definitely dead following its efforts to snake into the Doctor's past and turn all his past victories into ruinous defeat. An alternative explanation begins to make itself apparent.

Having been trying to get its mitts on his mind since his Second incarnation, its entirely possible that its greatest trick could be revealed to have been meddling in Eleven's regeneration. After all, with access to his memories from across ten other selves its perfectly conceivable that it could have reached back into his past & picked out a specially selected face from it, should it seek to form an Intelligence-Doctor hybrid...

It would make for an interesting first long-term arc for Twelve as he battles for control of his own mind/body, constantly swinging between himself/his own still-forming personality & the more malevolent tendencies of his foe. With the tantalising prospect of taking the helm of the TARDIS & turning the populations of whole worlds into its unthinking drones the Great one would have to be on spectacular form, as would Twelve - surely making for some epic confrontations.

The piercing eyes, so far only fleetingly glimpsed, would have every reason to be filled with fire, and that in itself should have us all excited for Series 8...rumoured to include a return to - you guessed it - Pompeii. 

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