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"So, you're the twelfth Doctor?" asked the Companion.

"Yes!" said the Doctor, a twinkle in his eyes. "Well, no. Actually, I'm the thirteenth. I just don't count one of my lives."

The Companion scrunched her adorable face in a look of mild confusion. "Why?" she asked. "Was he evil, or aborted?"

"Oh, no!" said the Doctor, his eyes still twinkling a little. "In fact, I consider him very much a Doctor. In a way, the old fellow was more a Doctor than any of me. I told him so, once. Though I thought he was a bit of a bastard for quite a while before then. My memories were wrong, you see."

The Companion didn't see.

"But I worked it all out during my last life," continued the Doctor, "So now I fully acknowledge him as a Doctor."

"So you are the thirteenth Doctor!" said the Companion, prettily satisfied with herself.

"Well, sort of… technically," said the Doctor, his eyes now only vaguely twinklish. "But I was used to the numbers I'd set down, so now I just say I'm the twelfth."

"That makes no sense!" said the Companion, sipping tea with one hand and idly pressing buttons on the TARDIS console as she sat right on top of it because there wasn't a proper chair nearby. "Why not just admit that you're the thirteenth Doctor?"

"Oh… because I'd made T-shirts," admitted the Doctor with some reluctance. "You see, I support myself by selling merchandise across time and space. Posters, papers, pens… Do you know how awkward it would be to muddle the numbers now?"

The Companion seemed rather disillusioned. She shrugged her shoulders, however, resigning herself to another slightly cynical reality. "At least that's a reason," she said, "even if it's not a good one."

"All my reasons are good," retorted the Doctor, his eyes not twinkling even slightly (though his manner was nonetheless charming and whimsical). "But… I'll acknowledge that some are better than others."

"All right, we'll drop the subject. I just wanted to know how many lives you've had." The Companion slipped her svelte frame off of the console, toggling a few switches with her bum on the way down. It didn't matter.

"Fourteen," said the Doctor.

"What? Fourteen what?" The Companion threw her tea into the air, where a miniature black hole appeared just long enough to suck it into another universe, staining Omega's tunic.

"I've had fourteen lives," he replied.

"But I thought you said you've been thirteen Doctors!" cried the Companion, stomping a girlish foot. "Are you joshing me?"

"I never josh!" declared the Doctor. "But my tenth self -- who was actually my eleventh, but never mind -- he pulled a bit of a trick and regenerated into himself after the energy healed his wounds."

"You can do that?" asked the Companion, suitably awed.

"Certainly, if I have a spare body part in near proximity."

The Companion gave the matter a bit of thought. "So," she said slowly, "What's the point of changing into someone else at all if the regeneration simply heals you first? Why is mutating into another person even part of the process?"

"Because Rassilon was a prat, that's why," replied the Doctor. "He was always adding unnecessary steps to the Time Lords' biological processes. It's why I have to scream into a bag every time I go to the bathroom."

"I was wondering."

"An excellent habit." The Doctor reached into a miniature black hole and retrieved the tea. "Just don't go too far with it. Our universe is full of things which don't make sense."

"Like you claiming to be the twelfth Doctor on his fourteenth life rather than just admitting that your number's thirteen?"

"Yes, quite. But shush!" he cried. "It's an unlucky number! Don't you know I’m superstitious?"
This took maybe twenty minutes or so (just in case you were expecting a glorious eternal opus).  It's a bit of catharsis, that's all.  Kind of aimed at the current writers of Doctor Who.  If you follow the show and its gossip, you know where I'm coming from.  If you don't, well... I'm sure we'll forgive each other.
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:iconilvos01:
ilvos01 Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2014  Hobbyist
This is pretty much exactly what happened in Time of the Doctor. :D
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:iconscribbleykins:
Scribbleykins Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2013
Well, I laughed.
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2013  Professional General Artist
  Good to hear!
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:iconbutterfly-dragon:
butterfly-dragon Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I don't really follow the doctor, but i heard what you had to say previously on youtube and this made me laugh :P

I wonder if this is the last season and if they intend to make a megabundle of all the seasons and specials somewhere after this one. I hate following series that are still in progress, if they decay i feel compelled to follow them in the trudging
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:icongwalla:
gwalla Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2013
All of the seasons would be impossible, since many early episodes are lost.
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:iconbutterfly-dragon:
butterfly-dragon Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Yeah i heard that too :(
People are so careless =P
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:icongwalla:
gwalla Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2013
Well, remember that in the early days it was considered disposable entertainment, not really something worth saving, and the BBC had a policy of reusing tape to save money, so many original tapes got recorded over with other programs. And this was before VCRs had been invented, so nobody taped it off of the TV. A lot of the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton) era only survives as shooting scripts and some still promotional shots.
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:iconezreader111:
EZReader111 Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013
Keep writing Joe. The only real limitation the Doctor has is imagination. If you can come up with a fantastic notion, make it compelling and still have it make sense, then you just might have what it takes to write a story that the rest of the Whovians can embrace as well. No pressure though.
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Professional General Artist
Thank you for the advice.
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:iconsamuelsgray:
SamuelSGray Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
The only limit anyone has is imagination. The problem here is that if you if you have not grounded your imaginative constructs in something foundational, your limitations make for a very concise and witless construct.  Now, I'll be clear in saying that I have not watched this series or any Dr. Who series mainly because of this fact--they've left the door of limitation so far open that Mr. Deus ex Machina can visit at any time of the day and make himself home and comfy without any fear of reprisal from whoever manages it respective narrative.

This is a problem anyone who ever has to deal with the prospect of plot, character, or incident resolutions is the simple aspect of remaining within the confines of the world you have created. Just as the solutions of plots too should come about as a result of the plot itself and not from a contrivance, so too should this controversy seek to resolve itself. A contrivance must be used for matters outside the drama—either previous events which are beyond human knowledge, or later ones that need to be foretold or announced.  Anything else is in God's hands--the omnipotent powers that we cannot understand but govern the plot we cannot see that are prevalent within the plots we do perceive.

Forgive me for saying so, but your suggestion inf coming up with a "fantastic notion" and making it "compelling and still have it make sense" is no less than lying to your audience.  A lie, as you very well should know is used most often as a cover for the real thing.  Joe has, I have no doubt, uncovered the real thing and is calling it out as it is.
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:iconscribbleykins:
Scribbleykins Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2013
Forgive me for saying so, but it shouldn't take three paragraphs to try to say a spade's a spade, or rather, that fiction is, well, fiction. Accusingly so, even!

Taking a fantastic notion and making it compelling while still having it make sense to an audience is what a lot of good fiction is all about (included therein the grounding in that it's a limitation that it has to be compelling and make sense). Also! Writers are not perfect, and we're all different, so hey, subjectiveness is also a factor. Think of suspension of disbelief. If you like something and think it's good, you brush away the incidental (or not-so-incidental) jarring detail or just shrug and say it's part of the premise of the story. You seem to be the 'it's got to make cold hard sense above all' type, in which case I recommend you towards hard science fiction, rather than the soft science fiction of the wacky antics of a time-travelling immortal whatever which is bound to be a minefield for all kinds of plotline/hole/ex-machina controversies... but at least it has wide creative freedom to play with.

Be that as it may, EZReader complimented Joe on his funny parodical take on what's going on in the Dr Whoverse nowadays (I think... I'm not fluent in Whovian myself, being a non-watcher) and your... counter-argument(?) to that compliment seems to me way off the context it was put in, nevermind the fact it was meant to be a kindly comment of encouragement. I don't usually even -do- this 'reply to random strangers on DA' thing, but dang, your final paragraph in particular just made my brain twist.

Bloody hell. 'Lying to your audience'. That's... ugh. Well, it's FICTION! It's in the name! Sure, it's also an excuse for bloody contrivance, but sometimes you give a writer slack because they make with the funny, the compelling and the interesting and besides this whole bloody world is made up of bloody contrivances anyway and NOTHING IS FERPECT. You take what you can get unless you can make it better yourself and you certainly don't unproductively rail at random strangers on DA LIKE I AM DOING RIGHT NOW LEARN FROM ME DAMN YOU.

What I'm saying is that a story having to make sense or avoid plot holes, deus ex machinas and such in order to be enjoyed is relative. It has to make some sense and not make too many missteps (also,  again, subjectiveness), but not as much as your declartion of 'liar, liar pants on fire' would suggest. Also, judging by this whole intellectual ordeal you've inadvertantly put me, the innocent bystander, through, and by your use of 'as you very well should know' and 'I have no doubt' vis--vis this whole 'lies' issue (It's FICTION, neither of us should be caring this much!), you've got the fine makings of an elitist and I hope you don't take too much offense and can see my text in the mostly humorous light it was written when I say:

You bastard.
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:iconsamuelsgray:
SamuelSGray Featured By Owner Nov 30, 2013
What are if not random people to each other, anyway? Yet, we spend time and effort to get to know one-and-other through effort in our ability to write.  And write we do, in long drawn-out paragraphs that illustrate a simple artistic endeavor here.  I spend as many paragraphs as I deem are necessary for conveying my points because I enjoy writing.  Writing, which is also a form of art and take to its extremes with much ease.  I jump on nonchalant determinations such as those because, in light of what I have gleaned from authors and authoritarians about it subject-matter, I believe I have something pertinent and well-meaning to say about them.  Hence, I am no different from any other living person on this site or within the art medium for that matter.  This is not an elitist gesture, this is simply the pursuit of excellence!

You've done so yourself in spanning your comment into, not three, but at least five paragraphs! To say what, exactly? Not one thing, but many things!  So too have I spent my time not to illustrate one thing, but many things!

If you're going to talk about a spade, you might want to clarify what kind of spade you're talking about.  This includes whether or not you're talking about a small shovel, what a shovel is used for, and how it was developed.  Moreover, you may be talking about the symbol on a suit of cards, in which case you may have to talk about why spades are significant in card games (such as why the Ace of Spades is important to Poker).

If this is not so, then is a person just a stick figure on a plain sheet of paper?

A spade is not just a spade. It is one thing. It is two things.  It is many things. But there exists definite descriptions for those that span much more than simple paragraphs and words.

Same goes for fiction.

The double-edged sword to limitless imagination is that when you've inadvertently placed your construct in a situation in which you've begun to dismantle the fundamental rules about which that construct exists, the worst thing you can do is to increase that damage by lying about it to your audience by telling them it's all part of the creative process.  In all reality, such an action would imply a lack of creativity on the part of whoever is writing the ongoing narrative. The reasons for this are that it does not follow it's own internal logic and is often so unlikely that it challenges whatever suspension of disbelief exists.  In the end, you'll be left with a less palatable narrative.
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:iconguyverlord:
GuyverLord Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013
Any confusion/questions about exactly how many lives/bodies the Doctor has had is because "People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but *actually* from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint - it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly... time-y wimey... stuff."
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:iconezreader111:
EZReader111 Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013
The "War Doctor" is now part of Whovian canon. It's uncertain how the Doctor actually thinks of himself, probably not as a number, and probably not as the insults he hurls at his other incarnations (Sand Shoes, Grandpa). Still, I'm happy with Moffat's take.
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013  Professional General Artist
Smith's declared himself "the eleventh" a couple of times.  I'd like to think... well, nevermind.  My mind's full of things I'd like to think.  So few of them make it into the real world.  Sometimes fan fiction's the best I can do.
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:iconsamuelsgray:
SamuelSGray Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013
The best anyone could do in your shoes given you have access to what resources you do.  Still, Joe, if this is important enough to you then, surely, is there more you can do?

I'm not offering myself up as a messenger for you here, but as you do seem passionate about this particular subject, surely others might as well? Who then, other than yourself, would stand for this...injustice?

I'm not saying so because my passions are aligned as such with this particular subject-matter, only that I note that you seem passionate about this matter.  If so, lesser people have done more with such a passion and with far lesser resources as the internet.
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2013  Professional General Artist
I know what you mean.  But I've posted all over Gallifrey Base, put the story in three places, made a whole YouTube video over it... short of starting a petition, I think I've done about as much as I can do.

Then again, maybe I'll start a petition!
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:iconsamuelsgray:
SamuelSGray Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2013
Joe, if one were to start watching Dr. Who--somebody who has never before seen an episode--where would you recommend that person enter into the series? Surely not THE beginning, yes? Because, if so, I'd be highly unmotivated.
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2013  Professional General Artist
  Well that's pretty easy actually, the ideal place to begin is with "Rose," the first episode of the "new" series.  That season was tailor made for new viewers.

   See, in case you don't know, the original run of the show ended in 1989.  It stayed off the air for over 15 years (aside from an unsuccessful attempt at a backdoor pilot launched in America in 1996).  Russell T. Davies finally revived it with actor Christopher Eccleston as a new, modern incarnation of the character.  Since the story was returning after such a long absence it was designed to be accessible to a fresh audience, without overt references to the huge amount of mythology set down over the past four decades.  The subsequent seven seasons sort of "eased back in" to all that, with generous explanations given to the Doctor's various clueless human companions.

  The tone of the series has lightened somewhat since Eccleston's tenure, but it's still the best way to start if you're not interested in plunging the depths of "Old Who."  If you want my advice, rent a box set sometime and give it a try.
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:iconsamuelsgray:
SamuelSGray Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2013
I'll give it a go on Netflix when I have the time.

Is it supposed to be like Quantum Leap where the main character is traveling through time and impersonating people throughout history?
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2013  Professional General Artist
Hah!  No, kind of the opposite.  He occasionally pretends to be someone important to get what he wants, but for the most part the Doctor just shows up and acts strange and whimsical and outsmarts terrible things, using his anomalous nature to his advantage.  The premise is tremendously flexible, since he can go to any time period or planet and therefore appear in any kind of backdrop.  His stated ambition is simply to explore and see the sights, but he's invariably drawn to solve whatever great problem he just happens to fall into the middle of.
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:icondeathchrist2000:
deathchrist2000 Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013  Student Writer
How do you explain the Brain of Morbius stuff?
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:iconjoeengland:
JoeEngland Featured By Owner Nov 27, 2013  Professional General Artist
First, I'd like to clarify that I'm responding directly to claims made by Stephen Moffat, the current head writer.  Though by all accounts Peter Capaldi will be the thirteenth actor to officially depict the character, the official declaration is that he will be referred to as the twelfth for the sake of continuity.  Also, Moffat has pointed to a scene in which the Tenth Doctor "cheated" a regeneration, claiming that Matt Smith's "Eleventh Doctor" (technically the Twelfth) is now therefore on his thirteenth life.  As for the "Mindbending" battle seen in "The Brain of Morbius"...

 Though the writers at the time admitted that they initially meant for those faces to represent earlier versions of the Doctor, Hartnell's version has since been practically cemented into the mythos as the first incarnation of the character.  Within the program the Doctor has, at many times, either directly or indirectly, referenced his own numbering.  All evidence points to his life cycle beginning with Hartnell's original Doctor.  Flashbacks, psychic slideshows, dream sequences, spoken dialog, and established canon all reinforce this notion, in addition to the supposed limit placed on all Time Lords of thirteen allotted lives, established in "The Deadly Assassin."

  The faces seen during "The Brain of Morbius" have since attracted a variety of explanations.  For instance, some have said that the images might have been younger versions of Hartnell's incarnation.  Others point to the "Cartmel Masterplan," a story arc planned by writer Andrew Cartmel which would have depicted the Doctor as the reincarnation of an even more ancient bygone Time Lord, whose faces may have been included in the scene (this was explored further in the novels, though the end of the original series left the plan abandoned).  Still others have posited that the images might have represented possible future bodies which the Doctor might one day assume.  It has also been suggested that the extra faces may simply have belonged to Morbius himself (which may be almost literally true, since one of the faces was in fact rumored an altered picture of the clay bust seen earlier in the episode).
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