Doctor Who Our Saviour, Reborn On Christmas Day - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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Doctor Who Our Saviour, Reborn On Christmas Day

Christopher Morley takes a timely look at the Tenth Doctor's arrival...

Christmas Day 2005. Christopher Eccleston has vacated the TARDIS and Doctor Who gets a proper Christmas special actually on Christmas Day - not awkwardly shoehorned into April as happened with The Unquiet Dead, Episode Three Of Series One set on Christmas Eve, 1869 as the Gelth infiltrate the gas of Victorian Cardiff - for the first time since The Feast Of Steven ended with William Hartnell breaking the fourth wall & wishing a merry Christmas to all the viewers at home on December 25, 1965.
DOCTOR: Here's a toast. A Happy Christmas to all of us.
STEVEN: Same to you, Doctor. Sara.
DOCTOR: (direct to camera) Incidentally, a Happy Christmas to all of you at home!

“Here we are then, London. Earth. The Solar System. We did it. Jackie. Mickey. Blimey! No, no, no, no, hold on. Wait there. I've got something to say. There was something I had to tell you, something important. What was it? No, hold on, hold on. Hold on, shush, shush, shush, shush. Oh, I know! Merry Christmas!”

David Tennant's arrival, then, would at least reinstate one tradition. At his own insistence another would return - after being credited as Doctor Who during the end credits of Eccleston's sole series, much as the Time Lord had during every incarnation from Hartnell to Tom Baker, Davey insisted that should change back to simply The Doctor - as had happened with his future father in law & indeed his own successors in the role.

Remarkably presciently, at least part of The Christmas Invasion's narrative deals with a new Prime Minister! At the time of writing Jeremy Corbyn & Boris Johnson are going at it hammer & tongs ahead of another General Election, where here it's Harriet Jones who's just got the keys to 10 Downing Street......

ROSE: Why's she on the telly?
JACKIE: She's Prime Minister now. I'm eighteen quid a week better off. They're calling it Britain's Golden Age. I keep on saying my Rose has met her.
Of course, when Rose met her previously she was an MP. But it would seem that experience shaped her approach to visitors from other worlds! A distinction she shares with the late Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart who of course went against the better judgement of his then-unpaid scientific adviser.
DOCTOR: The Brigadier. He's blown up the Silurian base.
LIZ: He must have had orders from the Ministry.
DOCTOR: And you knew?
LIZ: No! The government were frightened. They just couldn't take the risk.
DOCTOR: But that's murder. They were intelligent alien beings. A whole race of them. And he's just wiped them out.
You might forgive the now suited & booted Doctor a shake of the head & slow hand-clap after Ms Jones deals with the Sycorax in a remarkably similar manner, undoing his good work immediately post-regeneration having duelled their leader & displayed a degree of honour.

The last phase of the regenerative process having drawn the Sycorax to Earth in the first place! Which is sort of explained after we've got past the basics for any new viewers having a nice Christmas at home.
ROSE: Both working.
JACKIE: What do you mean, both?
ROSE: Well, he's got two hearts.
JACKIE: Oh, don't be stupid.
ROSE: He has.
JACKIE: Anything else he's got two of?
You'd possibly be right in wondering if Russell T Davies had simply overdone it on the turkey with all the trimmings & mulled wine, gone back to the notepad marked What I Learned From Spearhead From Space on his sitting room floor next to the upturned tin of Quality Street & had yet another look.

For a similar exchange happens when the Third arrives in hospital mercifully not as a result of overdoing it over Christmas 1969!

NURSE: Ready, sir.
HENDERSON: Thank you, nurse. Is this somebody's idea of a joke?
HENDERSON: Look at that.
NURSE: His heart, sir.
HENDERSON: If that is his heart, nurse, what is this?
Of course, once he's all better he'll get a shiny new laboratory & workspace to repair the TARDIS as well as the first of many invites to UNIT's Christmas party.

All of that is long ago, mind, by the time he's fully up & running in his latest body. Still doesn't stop him getting flashes of Wenley Moor in the aftermath of the downing of the Sycorax ship, mind?
DOCTOR: That was murder.
HARRIET: That was defence. It's adapted from alien technology. A ship that fell to Earth ten years ago.
DOCTOR: But they were leaving.
HARRIET: You said yourself, Doctor, they'd go back to the stars and tell others about the Earth. I'm sorry, Doctor, but you're not here all the time. You come and go. It happened today. Mister Llewellyn and the Major, they were murdered. They died right in front of me while you were sleeping. In which case we have to defend ourselves.
DOCTOR: Britain's Golden Age.
HARRIET: It comes with a price.
DOCTOR: I gave them the wrong warning. I should've told them to run as fast as they can, run and hide because the monsters are coming. The human race.
And so our planet & the population of it, which he's put a lot of work into protecting, fails to live up to his high standards - see also the Sea Devil massacre by the Navy back when he rocked the cape & velvet shirt.

Fittingly the man serving as the Doctor's intellectual equal & moral opposite who roused them from the waters all those years ago & helped lead them into another genocide will return in a younger, stronger body of his own by the Tenth Doctor's dying days, having also served a term as Prime Minister....

One of his first acts, of course, having shed his disguise as kindly old Professor Yana and acquired a new voicebox, is to try it out with a reminder of old battles for the benefit of those who hadn't seen the golden period of Masterly cunning.
“Anyway, why don't we stop and have a nice little chat while I tell you all my plans and you can work out a way to stop me, I don't think.”.
Proving at heart that underneath all the Tennant-mirroring chat he's still a political beast of great if misguided skill, The End Of Time has him setting his sights rather higher than merely running Britain's affairs. He wants to quite literally create a Master race! But the entry of a second, the very race which spawned both the Doctor & the one they first sent another of their shared kin rather nattily dressed in a bowler hat to warn him about, changes everything.

For Rassilon, one of the founding fathers of Time Lord society, having been resurrected to serve in the Time War much like the stooge in whose head he planted that insanity-inducing drumbeat is defeated & seemingly sent back into the War by the little drummer boy who first got the beat stuck in his head at the age of eight after a good long stare into the Untempered Schism, an event in which the immortality obsessed & now gauntlet-handed one intervened.

His sacrifice mirroring the intended end of The Final Game, Roger Delgado's untimely death forcing the cancellation of that original end of Jon Pertwee's time & the commissioning of Planet Of The Spiders in its stead. In a sense then, it survived - Tennant allowed to sign off for the final time on January 1, 2010.

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