Five 'other Doctors' from 50 years of Doctor Who

By Christopher Allen

Following the shock ending of The Name of the Doctor, and in honour of the Valeyard appearing in our Monsters section, we’ve decided to highlight five of the "other Doctors" that have featured in Doctor Who:

The Valeyard

“There is some evil in all of us, Doctor. Even you”

At the Doctor’s second trial by the Time Lords, the court prosecutor (a role called “Valeyard” on Gallifrey), pushed for the death sentence for the Doctor’s crimes. As the trial reached its climax, the Valeyard was revealed by the Master to be an amalgamation of the “darker sides” of the Doctor’s nature, from a point near the end of the Doctor’s life. Tasked with destroying the Doctor, who had uncovered evidence of Time Lord interference, the Valeyard had been promised the remainder of the Doctor’s incarnations. The Valeyard was defeated within the Time Lord Matrix, but as the Great Intelligence said to Vastra on Trenzalore, the Doctor will have other names before the end of his life: “the Storm, the Beast, the Valeyard…”

The Watcher

Man standing in field staring ahead

Materialising on Earth to get the measurements of a real Police Box, the Doctor spots a strange, ethereal figure staring at him intently. The Doctor says nothing, but from his eyes we know something is wrong. He later confides in his companions that by speaking to the figure – nicknamed “the Watcher” by Adric – he had “dipped into the future”. Although we never hear the Watcher speak, he foreshadowed the Doctor’s oncoming regeneration, ensuring the moment was prepared for. When the Doctor fell to his death from the Pharos Project telescope, the Watcher approached and merged with him, forming part of the regeneration into the Fifth Doctor.

The Dream Lord

“Well, if you're the Time Lord, let's call me the Dream Lord”

On a visit to the candle meadows of Karass don Slava, a speck of psychic pollen became trapped in the Time Rotor. Warming up, the mind parasite induced a dream state in the TARDIS crew – drawing on the darker sides of their nature. Manifesting himself in a parody of the Eleventh Doctor’s costume and lambasting the Time Lord’s “tawdry quirks”, the Dream Lord challenged the travellers to choose a reality. Although defeated, the Doctor admitted that at the age of 907, a mind parasite had a lot of darkness to work on. Perhaps the Dream Lord will always be there inside the Doctor’s mind…

The “Shalka Doctor”

Illustration of a mans face

Richard E. “Great Intelligence” Grant as the Ninth Doctor? Produced by bbc.co.uk for the show’s fortieth anniversary in 2003, Scream of the Shalka was an animation, intended to officially continue the Doctor’s story online. However, two months before Shalka was released, BBC Wales confirmed that the series would be returning to TV with Christopher Eccleston as the Ninth Doctor, throwing the “Shalka Doctor” into an alternate limbo. Featuring the considerable vocal talents of Richard E. Grant, Sophie Okonedo, Derek Jacobi and some chap called David Tennant, and written by Human Nature scribe Paul Cornell, Scream of the Shalka remains an interesting and stylish off-shoot for the series. If you’re interested in seeing Richard E. Grant as the icy alternate Ninth Doctor, Scream of the Shalka will be released on DVD later in 2013.

Introducing John Hurt as the Doctor

John Hurt turning around

Choosing a name is like making a promise. And although he did what he did without choice – and in the name of peace and of sanity – this Doctor broke the promise. But what was that promise? And just what has this Doctor done that is so earth-shatteringly terrible as to be condemned and disowned by the Eleventh? You’ll see those haunted eyes again soon…

Honorable mentions must also go to “other Doctors” Jackson Lake (The Next Doctor), the Dalek duplicate First Doctor (The Chase), actor Richard Hurndall’s First Doctor (The Five Doctors), the meta-crisis Doctor (Journey’s End) and Jon Pertwee’s trusty stuntman, Terry Walsh.

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