Christmas Day marks the end of the Eleventh Doctor. And there’s a lot of mysteries to get answered in 60 minutes of Television, mysteries built up over three series and a handful of specials.
So what is there left to reveal from The Time of the Doctor?
1. Who blew up the Tardis in Series 5?
Ah The Pandorica Opens and The Big Bang, the series five finale that featured a lot of drama and panic but no real bad guy. Yep, someone has set The Doctor up, and what’s more, blew up the Tardis. ‘Silence Will Fall’ were the words that echoed through the halls as River tried to prevent the inevitable. Who said those words? Who blew up the Tardis? The Doctor suspected we would find out soon enough, but two series and four specials later, and we still don’t know. The Great Intelligence? The Silence? Someone else entirely?
Chance of finding out: Very likely. We’ve been building up to this for some time.
2. How did he get out of the Pandorica?
You know that moment in Doctor Who, where you feel the writers think they have cleverly got The Doctor out of a seemingly impossible pickle, only when you actually think about it, it doesn’t make sense? At the end of The Pandorica Opens, The Doctor is trapped in a box, Rory is an Auton, Amy has been shot and is dying, River is an exploding Tardis and THE UNIVERSE ENDED. Not even I was sure how The Doctor would fix this mess. It was perhaps the most epic ending to an episode I’ve ever seen. And how did he do it? A future version of himself popped back in time and let himself out the box. Only… that’s not possible because there would not be a future version of himself unless he got out of the box in the first place. Nonsense.
Chances of finding out? None. It’s just one of those things that I’ll never let die.
3. Who the blazes is Madame Kovarian?
The closest we’ve had to a real Who villain during the entire Moffat era is Madame Kovarian. Played to sadistic perfection by Frances Barber. She is somehow involved with The Silence, she wants the Doctor dead… badly. She was killed by Amy in what has to be one of the most jaw dropping scenes of series 6, only as River pointed out, that was in an aborted timeline and so she’s probably still around somewhere, being all malicious and mean. Why does she hate The Doctor? What has happened to her?
Chances of finding out: I’d say there’s a decent chance here. Especially as she was trying to prevent the exact thing that will happen in Time of the Doctor.
4. Who gave Clara The Doctor’s phone number?
Considering how dramatic this year’s Doctor Who has been, it’s perhaps easy to forget this one. In The Bells of Saint John, the decent albeit unspectacular start to Season Seven Part Two, The Doctor’s phone rings. This is not meant to happen, as mentioned by The Ninth Doctor all the way back in 2005 (which was also a Steven Moffat episode). It’s Clara on the phone and she needs help with her internet. Who gave Clara the number? A woman in the shop who says The Doctor is the best in the universe. Who was that woman? River? Someone more interesting?
Chances of finding out: High. This could be one of those things left hanging. But I strongly doubt it.
5. What was in The Doctor’s hotel room?
In one of the more decent standalone stories from Series Six (The God Complex), The Doctor and a group of terrified strangers are locked in a hotel. In the hotel are rooms and one room will contain that person’s greatest fear. Sometimes it’s a clown or a monster. The Doctor soon discovers his room, he opens it, “Of course it’s you,” he says. The Cloister Bell ringing in the background. The Doctor then closes it and it is never brought up again. What the devil was it?
Chances of finding out: I’d have said none. Except the scene has cropped up in the latest US trailer. So… almost certain.
6. Why was The Doctor, River, Rory and Amy being gunned down by the US in The Day of the Moon?
At the end of The Impossible Astronaut, Amy has shot a little girl in a Space Suit having just told The Doctor she’s pregnant, River and Rory are in peril from The Silence and Canton Everett Delaware III has been rendered unconscious. All of them had been tasked by The President of the United States, Richard Nixon, to find out who keeps calling him in the dead of night. Exciting and baffling all at once. The very next episode? The Doctor is being encased in a prison and his companions are running away from a malicious Canton and FBI agents as he hunts them all down and shoots them all. It turns out to be a big rouse, and Canton was only pretending in order to get them into the same room together. But… why were they being hunted by US security agents in the first place? Especially (as is revealed later in the episode) The President is still working with them? I’ve watched the episode countless times and I still don’t know.
Chances of finding out: None. The writers clearly thought they had an exciting beginning on their hands and didn’t care that it didn’t quite fit with the previous episode.
7. How did The Silence get a Tardis?
It cropped up in Season Five in the excellent standalone episode, The Lodger. It then reappeared in Texas owned by The Silence (The Impossible Astronaut). It’s a Tardis, that looks bloody awesome and a little bit evil. But who owns it? Does it belong to the The Silence? And why is it following The Doctor through history?
Chances of finding out: 50/50. To be honest, there’s no need to really explain anything about it, other than it may explain who Madame Kovarian is, and how The Silence survived The Doctor’s annihilation of them all.
8. What were The Silence doing on Earth?
The Silence were influencing and changing the course of human history over thousands of years. But why? Why do the humans even matter? Actually, who are The Silence really? Where do they come from and what do they want?
Chances of finding out: Hopefully quite high. Especially as they are in the episode as one of the main villains. Silence will fall?
9. Doctor Who?
“The first question, the question that must never be answered, hidden in plain sight. The question you have been running from all your life. Doctor Who?” Has the prophecy already come to pass? I doubt it. The question and the fall of the Eleventh is all still to play for. So… will we finally discover The Doctor’s name? And why is it such a big deal in the first place?
Chances of finding out: Not a chance. Whatever his name is, it’ll be disappointing. I’m hoping for Dave. Not that we’ll ever know.
10. How did the Statue of Liberty move across New York without anyone noticing it?
Chances of finding out: Look, alright, it doesn’t make sense. But it looked awesome and terrifying and was a great idea. So stop whining alright?
Still whining? Ok, but this answer from Steven Moffat is the best you are going to get:
“The Angels can do so many things. They can bend time, climb inside your mind, hide in pictures, steal your voice, mess with your perception, leak stone from your eye… New York in 1938 was a nest of Angels and the people barely more than farm animals. The abattoir of the lonely assassins!
“In those terrible days, in that conquered city, you saw and understood only what the Angels allowed, so Liberty could move and hunt as it wished, in the blink of an eye, unseen by the lowly creatures upon which it preyed. Also, it tiptoed.”
11. Can The Doctor break his 12 regeneration limit?
So it turns out Matt Smith isn’t quite the eleventh Doctor after all. He’s the 12th. And if you count that time David Tennant created a second Doctor (rubbish), that means he is now on his final regeneration. Moffat has confirmed it. The end of Doctor Who is upon us! Except it isn’t. Capaldi picks things up after Christmas. But how?
Chances of finding out: Certain. That is surely going to be the real crux of the Christmas special.