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Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space

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Television's longest running sci-fi adventure series, "Doctor Who" celebrated its 50th Anniversary this past weekend in a special episode to commemorate the occasion.

The series started in England in 1963 and ran consistently until cancellation in 1989. The show kept going by having the main character, the Doctor, regenerate every time he died, allowing a new actor to take over the role. A 1996 made-for-television movie attempted to revive the series but didn't see much success. Finally, in 2005, the show was brought back and welcomed into the lives of a whole new generation of fans (or Whovians, as they like to call themselves).

BBC America aired the special at the same time England was broadcasting it, which allowed fans to watch at 2:50 pm. It was definitely worth a Saturday afternoon. "The Day of the Doctor" brings back some familiar faces in what may be one of the Doctor's greatest adventures through time and space.

During the last day of the Time War, the Doctor (John Hurt), faces a decision that will impact him for the rest of his life: the destruction of his home planet as well as the Time Lord race.

After the Doctor steals the universe's most destructive and powerful weapon, the Moment, the interface system appears in the form of Bad Wolf Girl (Billie Piper) in an attempt to provide judgment for the deployment of the device.

The interface challenges the doctor before he activates the device, "Do you want to see what that will turn you into?" In order to show the Doctor who he will become, she creates a rip in the fabric of reality, linking the Doctor to his future regenerations of Ten (David Tennant) and Eleven (Matt Smith).

Meanwhile, the Eleventh Doctor and Clara (Jenna Louise Coleman) are in present day London where they are summoned by UNIT to investigate some mysterious time lord art pieces at a long awaited request from Queen Elizabeth I.

However, while investigating a specific piece, titled "Galifrey Falls," a time portal is opened connecting the Eleventh Doctor with the Tenth (who happens to be with Queen Elizabeth I). The two team up to stop an alien species, known as the Zygones, from taking over the world as they invade the future from England, circa 1550.

The three Doctors are then brought to each other where both Ten and Eleven are forced to have a confrontation they never dreamed imaginable. The interface tells the Doctor, "This is who you become: the man who regrets and the man who forgets."

"The Day of the Doctor" was an incredible "Doctor Who" special. Smith, Tennant, and Hurt all did an amazing job in their portrayal of the Doctor. While each regeneration has a unique style they bring to the Doctor's personality, they all were able to convince us that we were looking at one Doctor in different forms. It was definitely one of the strengths to the special. Although this was nothing new, it was the first time that the series reboot has brought past regenerations together.

I found the 50th Anniversary to be awesome. I'll admit I had some hesitations about it at first, but I found the plot to be very well-written, especially the interaction of the three Doctors. As a huge David Tennant fan, I was thrilled he was being brought back to reprise the role of the Tenth Doctor. Both he and Matt Smith did an amazing job of portraying the same character in their unique styles. Even John Hurt's addition to the mixture was very well done.

The only issue I really had were the Zygones. I would have much rather seen a familiar villain for the 50th special rather than a new one that really wasn't all that interesting. However, it still worked for the plot.

At first, I was very disappointed that Billie Piper was not portraying the actual character of Rose Tyler, a fan favorite who appeared in the first two seasons of the new series, but instead was just a system interface. Yet after the episode, I think it made more sense not to have Rose. The whole episode would've been focused on her and Ten, rather than the three Doctors.

The ending was also very well-written as it provided the show with a new direction. The Doctor has been running away from all these years from his past, trying to either make amends all over the universe, or forgetting altogether. However, after joining together with his past and future regenerations (giving fans their first glimpse of Peter Capaldi as the thirteenth Doctor), the Doctor has saved his home planet, instead of destroying it. Rather than running away, he now has something to look forward to: going home.

Some fans might have had an issue with this premise as it could imply the show drawing to a close, but if anything, it has just secured a new plot/storyline for another 50 years. All the adventures the Doctor now takes are in anticipation of one day finding his home and restoring it to the universe.

Along with some other familiar "Doctor Who" faces, ongoing jokes and some continuity references, the 50th Anniversary special will definitely be a fan favorite. Whether you are a fan of the original series or perhaps an even more recent and younger one, the episode has something for fans of all ages that will be sure to please. The Doctor will return on Christmas Day in a Christmas special, "The Time of the Doctor," where fans will say goodbye to Matt Smith and welcome Peter Capaldi as the thirteenth regeneration of the Doctor. PHOTO TAKEN from missbilliepiper.com

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  • APA 6th ed.: Brucella, Will (2013-12-04). Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space. The Outlook (Monmouth University) p. 1.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Brucella, Will. "Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space." The Outlook (Monmouth University) [add city] 2013-12-04, 1. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Brucella, Will. "Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space." The Outlook (Monmouth University), edition, sec., 2013-12-04
  • Turabian: Brucella, Will. "Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space." The Outlook (Monmouth University), 2013-12-04, section, 1 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Fifty_Years_of_Flying_Through_Time_and_Space | work=The Outlook (Monmouth University) | pages=1 | date=2013-12-04 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=15 October 2019 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Fifty Years of Flying Through Time and Space | url=http://cuttingsarchive.org/index.php/Fifty_Years_of_Flying_Through_Time_and_Space | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=15 October 2019}}</ref>