A few days ago, my friends Ray Amell and Mark Thompson (both ardent Who Fans who display their love for the show with their tattoos of the Seal of Gallifrey, which once had been the symbol of Rassilon), finally saw the Christmas Special and we got to talk about it as the week ended. And the conversation turned to the reactions of the TARDIS once the Doctor regenerated into a woman.
Originally, all three of us, as well as many other viewers, thought that the TARDIS "puked" her out because it was upset that the Doctor had become a woman. But upon thinking about it, I guess it was actually trying to save her. After all, the place was getting blowed up real good due to the expelled regeneration energy taking its toll on the interior. So tossing the Doctor out was Sexy’s way of saving her.
Once the Doctor was falling to Earth Prime-Time, the TARDIS dematerialized, leaving her behind. So here’s what I think:
Even though the Doctor was falling to certain death, (it was certainly a greater height than that which killed the Fourth Incarnation), I think the TARDIS had gone to some other point in Time, Past or Future, where it could take its own sweet time in healing itself. And then it would probably return to when it disgorged the Doctor, but a few seconds later. And as it travels in space as well as time, Sexy would probably position itself beneath her so that she falls into its “embrace”.
One of the other members of a ‘Doctor Who’ Facebook group to which I belong (one of several) had a different idea as to where they reunite:
In the leaked pics of the filming of her first episode she still has 12's clothes on and she's looking like a disheveled bag lady. So we know she survived the fall, and with the introduction we may have seen her finding the TARDIS.
However it plays out, I think one thing does hold true – the TARDIS does disappear for a while, perhaps only seconds from the Doctor’s perspective, but who knows how long it took Sexy to heal? And nothing says that the phone box rushed directly back to save the Time Lord.
Maybe it took its time to have its own adventures……
So there’s your fanfic suggestion: What type of adventures would the TARDIS have while away from the Doctor? Any suggestion could be fit in because the TARDIS really doesn’t age, so it could be gone for ages and still get back in time to save the Thirteenth Incarnation.
The way I would start it?
- As the TARDIS is rebuilding itself with a new design in some remote location, a small child innocently enters the police box.
- Probably a human child; could be an alien one. I’m thinking of a princess who was thrust into becoming the ruler of Padrivole Regency Nine after her older sister and the Heir Apparent was killed by the plasmavore who called herself Florence Finnegan.
- Maybe it’s running away from some other kind of threat. Some type of predator hunting it? (Because of this past year here in the States, I have no trouble thinking they’re bigoted backwoods rednecks looking at a child as sport. Neanderthals.) Her space vessel might have crashed in bayou country and these inbred scum think it would be fun to track her down as a trophy kill. Or they might even have had a worse fate in mind…..
- The child runs deeper into the heart of the TARDIS, given a head start by the hunters standing agape for a few moments, providing the customary realization that it is bigger on the inside. (The girl would just accept it and keep running. Maybe as an alien child she is accustomed to the concept of spatial distortion.)
- The TARDIS, using a long-neglected vocal program, could coach and guide the child to safety (perhaps even appearing as a hologram – from the child’s perspective, a “ghost”? – in order to befriend her.)
- Meanwhile, it would be shutting doors, rearranging corridors, changing the “screensaver” to mess with the heads of her pursuers, finally expelling an entire room to lose the invaders from her interior.
- (I’d have to give more thought as to which room. The library, the arboretum, and the indoor pool have all been used already. Something odd, off-beat…. A “man cave”, mayhaps? In its inner monologue, the TARDIS could observe that the present incarnation of the Doctor wasn’t going to need it anyway.)
- If this was being actually taped for broadcast, it would be a great showcase for Suranne Jones, to bring her back.
- As for the child, I already had a vision of how I would have portrayed the people of Padriole Regency Nine – the murdered princess would have looked like Cindy Lou Who of the animated “How The Grinch Stole Christmas.”
And that would be just the first adventure! Like I said, the TARDIS could go off on several adventures before it actually had to go back in Time to rescue the Doctor. I've seen plenty of photoshopped pictures of the TARDIS in other TV shows, but who says the Doctor had to be inside?
What type of solo adventure would you give the TARDIS? If you do write one up, send me the link to it so that I might enjoy it; perhaps even share it here next year!