Over the years, Doctor Who has had its fair share of mysteries. And while the important stuff does tend to get explained, this isn’t always the case.
More often than not, there just isn’t enough time (and space) to explain everything in the show. And with Doctor Who constantly reinventing itself, and with new writers (understandably) choosing to focus on new ideas rather than old ones, there are always going to be unresolved plot threads that slip under the radar.
But fortunately, there are other places we can go to get these answers.
Sometimes, the show’s creative team reveals secrets in press interviews. Sometimes, they (or the fans) tie up loose ends in spinoff media. And sometimes, one look at an episode’s shooting script is all we need to make sense of things.
What did that character do next? How did that character survive? And just what was that line all about?!
These things need no longer be mysteries if you know where to look...
10. What Was The Picnic At Asgard?
When we first met River Song in the Series 4 two-parter Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead, she mentioned two adventures yet to take place for the Doctor.
The first of these, The Crash of the Byzantium, would make it to the screen in the very next River Song story, The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone. But the second, The Picnic at Asgard, remains a mystery - on TV, at least.
Jenny Colgan’s 2016 short story of the same name reveals all about this intriguing encounter. And brace yourselves: it’s probably not quite what you were expecting.
According to this account, Asgard is not some romantic oasis, but a planet-sized theme park. The Doctor (number Eleven) and River spend a good deal longer there than you might have imagined, having to contend with a malfunctioning mechanical dragon and a dodgy dimensional calibrator, before they can get anywhere near their picnic basket.
Colgan’s story is also surprisingly moving, delving deep into River’s desire to have children, and her reluctance to raise the matter with the Doctor. It’s well worth a look.