Graham took a deep intake of breath as he sat down beside Agent O, the evening before had put both of them as well as The Doctor on an apprehensive edge, but they still felt like they could brave whatever was to come, and they trusted the reassuring light of morning more than the distrust and danger of night.
“How’s Yaz?” said O as he handed Graham a cup of tea
“Ryan’s outside with her now, she looked pretty shaken, here’s hoping his company does her some good, but if that don’t work, we’ll have to put a group effort in. That’s what we do you know, we support each other”
“One big happy family” O said under his breath
Graham got the distinct impression that O muttered this with some degree of envious resentment; he wasn’t quite sure where he had gotten it from, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask down the line.
However, in this instance O was quick to ask his own questions.
“How long have you known the Doctor, Graham?”
“Well it’s a tricky question that, see things never really happen in a straight line with the Doc”
Graham sensed O wanted to share more than what he was already telling, he knew things of The Doctor, things he felt he needed to know. A part of him also felt slightly frustrated he hadn’t taken the lead with the inquisition.
“Why? How much do you know about her?”
“A bit,” ha “our paths crossed very briefly once, when she was a man.”
Graham almost choked on his tea.
“When she was a what?” he said aloud
“Has she never mentioned that?”
“Yeah, yeah she did. The night Grace, my wife, died, when we first met her. She claimed she’d been a white-haired Scotsman. I thought it was some wild random joke only she got, but obviously there was more to it”
“You seem surprised” said O.
“I suppose, shouldn’t I be?”
“Well, it IS current year” O elaborated.
“Oh, well, forgive me then, I come from a time where news like this would level anyone of my generation’s upbringing. It’s quite a lot to take in, especially since I…”
He trailed off, almost letting something slip to O that he preferred to keep private.
“..Never mind, not important”
“You got any idea where she’s from?” O asked next.
“Well, we’ve tried to ask, but she just changes the subject, yeah.”
O’s eyes glanced in the direction of a stack of folders and files perched on the top of a shelf.
“I’ve got everything up there, anything you want answered about The Doctor can be found up there, all the Intel I could gather while working at MI6. It can be all yours Graham”
“Isn’t that all confidential? Official secrets act and all that?”
“Come on, I won’t tell” O said.
Graham now sensed that O was pressuring him, almost mischievously, like they were two errant schoolboys who had gotten their hands on the answer to a really tough exam and were daring the other to take a peek at the answers.
“What do you say Graham? Do you want to take a look?”
Graham took another sip, stared at the shelf, teased he’d get up out of the seat, and then stopped to process what he was considering.
Finally, he turned back to O and shook his head.
“I’d rather she tell me, when she’s ready”
“Quite right, you’re a good catch for her Graham”
“Eh? The Doc? I suppose she’s alright” Graham replied, before mentally cursing himself.
He hadn’t responded with something that definitively took issue with what O had suggested, and now he was going to pounce on that to further an already complicated conversation.
“She’s quite the looker”
Graham smiled, but the look on his face told O that pursuits like that just weren’t meant to be.
“Oh I don’t think along those lines, I’m old enough to be as much her granddad as I am Ryan’s’”
“Then you don’t know the stories?”
“She’s got a reputation; we learn something about that every day around her”
“Yes, but if you did read the files I have on her, you’ll find she’s older than she looks, even older than you. Age needn’t be an issue with you two. You’re both the oldest and the wisest of your little group”
“Oh come off it, me and her? Only in a fantasy world”
“Strange, that…does appear to be something you’re both currently qualified for”
“I’m not a well man O; I’ve had my share of scares with the big C”
“Oh I’m sure C was just splendid around you”
“The other ‘C’, cancer” Graham corrected him.
“Oh, but of course, my apologies”
“Yeah, I’m not out of the woods with it either. Me and Doc couldn’t have anything, if we got too attached, she’d end up saying goodbye to me just as soon as she learned how to listen”
The Doctor suddenly burst out of the TARDIS carrying a large jug of liquid.
“Come on you two, everyone outside. Lot’s to catch up on. I made ice tea. Possibly” she said, showing the contents to Graham proudly, before dashing towards the front door, beckoning Graham and O to join her.
“So considerate” O said.
“Ice tea? Grace loved to take that while we were abroad. Haven’t drank it since she passed. How did she know?”
“Maybe she does listen once in a while…perhaps she even made it to impress you, let you know just how lucky she is to have you in her life” O said.
Graham gave him a piercing glance, more perturbed than ever with what he was implying. This was not the kind of conversation he had desired in the morning, nor the kind of feelings he wanted to confront.
“Just saying” he concluded.
“O, not a whiff of this conversation reaches her ears, you got that?”
“Absolutely” he said.
The two got up, ready to head outside, Graham did one last look at the files on the shelf, then turned and joined The Doctor.
O put his right hand on Graham’s shoulder.
“Rest assured Graham, nothing of what I said was meant to make you feel uncomfortable, it’s just…when one comes to understand The Doctor like I do, you tend to see more of what makes her so…satisfying”
“You got something for her yourself? I know my pulse can race, but you’re acting like your own beat is a bit of a beast around her”
“Oh it very much is…it’s like a drumbeat” O said.
When circumstances, opinions and preferences force us to give certain passion projects up, one is left with the inevitable feeling we’ve left some work half-done. I’ve felt that way about Doctor Who series 11, opting to only edit a handful of episodes because I feel there’s not much creative avenues required for the rather unremarkable slew of stories, but then there’s the likes of Whoflix, who’d much rather not attempt edits of the Whitaker-not named-David era at all. At least if you want someone to feel you’re missed at work you could show up every now and then.
Ah, but we love Whoflix here at Zaredit, that guy has taught me a lot about perfecting editing and thinking more outside the box, so I’m fine with him letting the Doctor go and finishing all that is left to be salvaged from the ashes of his personal Pompei. As for us? C’mon Ace, we’ve got work to do.
Where was I? What was the subject we were on? Ah, yes, incompleteness, and that brings back around to Whoflix. When all is said and compiled, there may still be one gap in the man’s collection of edits, and that is the Night of the Doctor.
One might think there’s not much you can get out of a six minute short, and you’d be right. It’s hard to subtract even more from it…so why not instead ADD to it?
By adding “The Last Day” as a timey whimey prologue, you can build the escalation of events in the time war up a little more, giving us a taste of just how merciless the Daleks are en route to the Eighth Doctor’s fateful meeting with Cass aboard her spaceship.
How to extend it past even the original running time? Simply rely on the creativity of others and steal from the best! (just remember to give them the proper credit for being immensely more talented than you)
The works of Youtuber Oliver Comet provided the Doctor’s transformation and gradual acceptance of his War Doctor form, Comet even snuck in a brief cameo from Dalton as Rassilon. It’s enough to genuinely frustrate a fellow at the squandered opportunities they had with the realisation of the late John Hurt’s character. If only Big Finish could have spent some money on nabbing Dalton for some stories before Hurt passed on…and we never did get to see a Molloy/Hurt face off at the gates of Elysium either. Perhaps the Nightmare Child still awaits for McGann?
Due to Comet putting his edit together in 4/3, the DVD rips had to be set to that ratio to match, which means FE.org aren’t likely to take it when I write up the IFDB article, which means this is the “renegade edition”, the official version which will listed on the IFDB will not include Comet’s footage.
Cast your mind back to 2005…simpler times and simple pleasures. Russel T. Davies re awoken the sleeping giant of science-fiction with a modest and whirl wind reinvention of Doctor Who starring Christopher Eccelston as the Ninth Doctor and Billie Piper as Rose Tyler, who became essentially the show’s quintessential answer to Gwen Stacy…only without the satisfaction of a bridging.
For that first year, many fans questioned where things would go, it would not be until “Dalek” where we learned who was involved in the last great time war (I, being a book nerd, thought they were going to make the recently folded war with Faction Paradox canon to the tv world), other questions were whether or not Adam would turn out to be Davros because of his ‘third eye’ (yes, erratically preposterous fan theories were running rampant even back then), but the most crucial question on everyone’s mind…was what had happened to Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor?
There didn’t seem to be an answer. Doctor Who Magazine at one point offered to reveal how he came to be Christopher Eccelston with the planned conclusion to their final Eighth Doctor strip adventure “The Flood”, something RTD even encouraged, but the BBC had the final say and did’nt want Eccelston to be glimpsed before transmission, so the idea was quietly dropped and the strip adventure ended on a homage of sorts to “Survival”. I remember being quite vexed at the time about it, as there were still loose ends from that era still to be tied up…though that would be (partially) remedied in later years with the new series Doctors.
We did’nt get a concrete answer until the 50th anniversary, seven years later, in the “Night of the Doctor” minisode, where the Eighth Doctor tries in vain to save someone who despises his race and stays with her ’till the bitter end…only to be given a choice by the Sisterhood of Karn to become a being who could tip the balance in the ongoing time war. He chooses to be a warrior, a Doctor no more…we come to know him as a Doctor of war.
It wasn’t Eccelston though.
In a convoluted fashion that can only come about when a reluctant actor doesn’t want to dip his toes in the same lake twice, Eccelston was replaced in the special by John Hurt, and the special tied up the remainder of RTD’s influence on the show in grandfatherly fashion. Eccelston had to make do with archive footage of him being used in the sequence where all thirteen Doctors save Gallifrey.
Fans opinion was mixed, some did not take to the fact Mcgann was shafted by the 50th and did’nt get to participate in the time war at all, others could not adapt well to the concept that Eccelston was not even the Ninth, but in actuality the tenth incarnation of the time lord, bumping Matt Smith up to the final incarnation. Some thought the lineage of the Doctors had become slightly more complicated than it need be.
Some cried out for simpler times.
Took a few years but…wish granted.
Cast your mind back now to 2005, where the Eighth transitions to Nine in just under a few minutes, sit back and enjoy Eccleston’s first adventure all over again…oh, and this time, let’s leave Rose Tyler behind shall we?
Physician heal thyself