Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

The War Doctor

I'm guessing that John Hurt's War Doctor was inserted into the timeline because of Christopher Eccleston's refusal to show up for the Anniversary. If Eccleston had been available it seems likely we would have seen him regenerating from Paul McGann, fighting in the Time War and then emerging as the damaged character we encountered in the first season of the revived show. That, anyway, would have been the shortest route from A to B.  If such was the original plan then what we have with the War Doctor is an inspired bodge- a repair to the fabric of the story necessitated by events beyond the show runner's control. Making a creative virtue out of necessity has been an especial glory of Dr Who. You lose the services of William Hartnell so you give the Doctor the power to regenerate- and so create a narrative that need never end and which receives a refreshing infusion of the new and unexpected every two or three years.

It would have been nice to see Eccleston again, but one can't regret the invention of the War Doctor or the casting and performance of John Hurt. They have enriched the mythos. Sometimes- and especially with a show like Dr Who that has a history- even an ethic- of improvisation- accidents turn out to be really lucky. 
Subscribe

  • The Wonderful Poem

    I had a dream a few nights back that I was with a poet- who was sort of W.H. Auden but only vaguely so- and he'd just written a really good…

  • The Devil's Stone, Newington, Swale

    There are various versions of the legend. One of them tells how the Devil, annoyed by the ringing of the bells of St Mary's church in…

  • Return To The High Street

    It was forecast that lots of little businesses would go to the wall because of lockdown, but it just doesn't seem to have happened. We…

  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 22 comments

  • The Wonderful Poem

    I had a dream a few nights back that I was with a poet- who was sort of W.H. Auden but only vaguely so- and he'd just written a really good…

  • The Devil's Stone, Newington, Swale

    There are various versions of the legend. One of them tells how the Devil, annoyed by the ringing of the bells of St Mary's church in…

  • Return To The High Street

    It was forecast that lots of little businesses would go to the wall because of lockdown, but it just doesn't seem to have happened. We…