‘THE NIGHT OF THE DOCTOR’
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“Doctor No More!” – Celebrating 50 Years of ‘Doctor Who’
Watch this before you watch ‘The Day of the Doctor’!
‘The Night of the Doctor’ is a terrific seven-minute prequel by Steven Moffat! I watched this again and again when I first saw it. It stars Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor! It was so delighted to see Paul reprise his role as the Eighth Doctor in this, as this is his second TV appearance since ‘The TV Movie’!
Paul McGann has played the Doctor in his own series of Big Finish audios. Having enjoyed those audio stories with Paul McGann’s Doctor, I was convinced his Doctor would work well for the TV series. For the 50th anniversary, it was decided to bring him back for this special prequel TV episode.
In the episode, the Doctor rescues a pilot named Cass during the early years of the Time War. Emma Campbell-Jones as Cass is crash-landing onto a planet in her ship. When the Doctor rescues her, Cass soon realises he’s a Time Lord. The Doctor tries to convince her he’s good, but she doesn’t believe it.
Eventually, Cass’ ship with the Doctor on board crash-lands onto the planet that happens to be Karn from ‘The Brain of Morbius’. The Sisterhood of Karn, led by Clare Higgins as Ohila, find the Doctor among the wreckage. The Doctor’s on the point of death and the Sisterhood offer him a chance of life.
By the end, the Doctor takes a potion so that he can regenerate. I love those mentions of the Eighth Doctor’s past companions in the Big Finish audios including Charley, C’rizz, Lucie, Tamsin and Molly. Eventually, the Eighth Doctor regenerates and is now a young-looking John Hurt as the War Doctor.
This episode was shown on the BBC Red Button channel before ‘The Day of the Doctor’ was shown on BBC One for the 50th anniversary. I was lucky to watch this again and again in Chichester when I was watching the 50th anniversary celebrations in 2013. I look back with such fond memories of this.
‘The Night of the Doctor’ was originally released on the original DVD of ‘The Day of the Doctor’. ‘The Night of the Doctor’ has now been re-released as part of the ’50th Anniversary Collector’s Edition DVD’ of ‘Doctor Who’ and is on Disc 1 with ‘The Name of the Doctor’. It’s also been re-released on the Blu-ray edition of ‘The TV Movie’ with Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor.
‘The Night of the Doctor’ rating – 10/10
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