Saturday, May 21, 2005


The Gallifreyan Time Lord known as "The Doctor" is a thief.

I could have said that he was a criminal. After all, his radical views and philosophies run antithetical to the established principles of Gallifreyan society. And he was even brought back to face the trial of a Time Lord on several occasions.

But I wanted to be more specific. He's a thief. A crook. A right sticky-fingers.

The current incarnation of the Doctor proved this in the recent episode "The Long Game". By using his cosmic spanner, the Doctor was able to access the 200,000 AD equivalent to an ATM and give Adam a real joystick - a pencil-length electronic box full of unlimited credit.

And this aspect of his personality is not due to the most recent regeneration (his ninth). All of his personae have had to resort to thievery while they've been on the run through Time. How else to keep himself and his companions fed? Or to support his addiction to jelly babies? And then there's the clothing expenses.

The wardrobe bill for his companions had to be considerable. The Doctor might have been able to traverse Time and Space without regard to wearing anything but the clothes chosen by each version of himself. But especially when it came to his companions travelling in Earth's past history, it was always best to have the appropriate apparel on hand.

Most recently, the Ninth Doctor had his companion Rose Tyler find a dress befitting Naples circa Christmas Eve, 1860. It turned out they were in Cardiff, 1869, but the dress she chose was still appropriate.

Even if it was for Cardiff.......

There are a lot of time periods, a lot of locations. There would be no problem in storing all of those clothes - because of the spatial anomalies of the TARDIS, the Doctor's wardrobe area was immense. (In that recent episode 'The Unquiet Dead', we learned that you reach the wardrobe from the main control room by taking the first left, second right, third on the left. Then go straight ahead and under the stairs, past the bins and it would be found beyond the fifth door on the left.)

The problem would be in supplying all of the necessary clothing to cover any era. And that would take some money.

Unless of course, you were willing to steal what you needed.

Considering the shabbiness of many of his own sartorial selections, it's possible he just sidled the TARDIS up to a donation bin and helped himself with a little dumpster diving for duds. But he may have also availed himself of any apparel no longer of any use to its previous owners.

For instance, it's my contention that at some point in the late 1960s or even into the 1970s, the Doctor found himself in Gotham City. Learning that a criminal known as "The Riddler" was presently incarcerated in Gotham City Penitentiary, the Doctor might have decided to relieve him of some of the custom-made costumes the Riddler wore during his nefarious exploits.

Who knows when such a thing might come in handy?

As it turned out, that would have been approximately 1984, present-day Earth time.

While on the planet Androzani, the fifth incarnation of the Doctor was forced to undergo yet another regeneration. And with this transformation, the Sixth Doctor exhibited personality traits that made his previous style and taste in clothing to be no longer of any interest to him. And so he rummaged about through his many bins of clothing in that expansive wardrobe and found perhaps the all-time most appalling amalgamation of apparel ever sported by a Time Lord.

If Elton John and Robin Williams had a love child, this would be the outfit he'd be dressed in.

And it was with this ensemble of clothing that the Sixth Doctor found a use for the type of dress shirts he had purloined from that puzzler known as the Riddler.

Want to see proof? Click on this link:


"I wonder why everyone dressed old-fashioned in those days.
They don't do it now."
Kathy Anderson
'Father Knows Best'

1 comment:

Adric R'Bourne said...

A Time Lord's chronology is a twisty one, but if you had only gone back a little farther in his chronological adventures, you would have seen that the Fifth Doctor (My favorite!) was the one first wearing that style of shirts.

I think his sixth incarnation was just fond of his prevous form's style in collar tabs and decided to keep wearing these shirts of the Riddler.

In fact, I went to that same site you did and found this good example:

I think the rest of your theory remains valid. And I'll add that I think it was the Third Incarnation, the one banished to remain on Earth, who probably found the time (sorry) to steal the shirt over in America.

Adric R'Bourne