Doctor Who: 5 Things We Learned From "The Night Of The Doctor"

Bigfinish Yes, kids, Paul McGann, previously seen as the Eighth Doctor in a frankly terrible TV movie, and frequently heard playing the character in a series of audio stories for Big Finish, has finally returned to the screen in this lovely little video tie-in to the 50th anniversary story. Sure, it's a short story, and sure, it doesn't end on the happiest note, but at least we finally got a conclusion for the 8th Doctor's arc. In case you haven't seen it, here it is! So let's go over what we learned from this...

5. John Hurt's "Doctor" Is The Ninth Incarnation Of The Character

John Hurt This is, by far, the biggest bit we learned here, at least in the short term. Now Hurt's character might call himself the War Leader or the General or something like that. Something other than "The Doctor", but he is the 9th version of the character. This means that Eccleston's Doctor is the 10th incarnation, Tennant's the 11th, Smith's is the 12th, and Capaldi's Doctor will be the 13th, which has all sorts of interesting possibilities. You see, in theory Time Lords are able to regenerate twelve times, meaning that Capaldi's Doctor should be the last version of the character. Of course we all know they'll find a way around that fairly easily, at least as long as the show remains popular. From what we saw in the 20th anniversary special, "The Five Doctors", it's apparently possible for the Time Lords to give someone a whole new set of lives (as they promised the Master). I suspect the 13 life limit was probably something artificial that they imposed. With them gone, no problem.

Chris Swanson is a freelance writer and blogger based in Phoenix, Arizona, where winter happens to other people. His blog is at