10 Doctor Who Changes That Were Completely Justified

Regenerations, CGI tweaks, and other ways Doctor Who has changed for the better!

Doctor Who An Adventure In Space and Time Matt Smith Ncuti Gatwa
BBC Studios

When you have a show that runs for 60 years, change is rather unavoidable. Nobody is ever all that fond of it, but without it, Doctor Who wouldn't be around today – either that, or William Hartnell would be a medical marvel.

As fans, we tend to complain whenever our beloved show changes, even slightly. It’s in our nature as human beings – ask the right person and, according to them, the show has "died" more times than Rory Williams on any given week.

But a lot of the time, change works. Change is justifiable, and logical, even though we might all complain about it at first! After all, we resent the fact that our favourite Doctor is leaving... right up until the moment the new one wins us over. Rinse and repeat every three to four years.

From minor tweaks that fixed fan gripes to switch-ups that altered the very fabric of the show, we thought we'd look on the positive side of change in this article, and explore some of the ways Doctor Who has evolved over the decades.

10. It Feels Different This Time

Doctor Who An Adventure In Space and Time Matt Smith Ncuti Gatwa
BBC Studios

You’d imagine that a biological process would be fairly consistent in the way it worked, but regeneration in the classic run was always a bit weird.

Sure, you had the majority fall into the general box of ‘whooshy effect around the face area’, but then there were some outliers, like Seven Frankensteining himself into Eight, Two dropping acid and falling down a big hole, and Tom Baker getting a cuddle from a bald ghost made of cotton. Nobody seemed quite sure how they wanted regeneration to work – they weren’t even consistent in whether the change happened pre or post death.

Cue the revival, in which all three showrunners have, remarkably, seemed to be in agreement with the style established in 2005 (minus Matt Smith’s little time-sneeze, but he’d already had his light show on the clock tower). This has been a nice connecting through-line over the years, making jumps between Doctors and showrunners a little less jarring, and frankly, it's a ruddy great special effect too.

Nothing says drama like having a little cry and shooting fireworks out of your head!

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Alex is a sci-fi and fantasy swot, and is a writer for WhoCulture. He is incapable of watching TV without reciting trivia, and sometimes, when his heart is in the right place, and the stars are too, he’s worth listening to.