Regenerations questions?

Dave

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How many can a Time Lord have?

How many has the Doctor had?

In the Tom Baker (4th Doctor) story "The Brain of Morbius" , near to the end, Morbius challenges the Doctor to a mind battle during which images of previous regenerations are projected on a screen.

Morbius (also a Time Lord) asks the Doctor, "How long have you lived?" then we see Jon Pertwee's image (3rd Doctor), Patrick Troughton's image (2nd Doctor), William Hartnell's image (1st Doctor) -- indicating an natural progression backwards -- and then at least 6 more images follow. These are then presumably earlier regenerations of the Doctor.

That would make Tom Baker actually the 10th regeneration. And Paul McGann would be the 14th Doctor.

However, somewhere I remember that only 12 regenerations are allowed. I think that the Master had reached his limit in one episode.

(Edit: The episode was 'The Deadly Assasin' (also Tom Baker) and he needed the power of the Eye of Harmony to stay alive, but his actions would result in the destruction of Galifrey.)

Which is correct?

Of course, some of those images could have been earlier regenerations of Morbius too.
 
The answer is indeed 12.

However, this being science fiction and, as I have said before, Dr. Who has never been a series to let consistancy stand in the way of telling a story.

The Master has cheated the limit by seizing the bodies of others. When the original actor that played The Master ended his run, The Master stole the body of Consul Tremas of Traken, which led to Nyssa, his daughter, joining The Doctor as a companion. In the FOX movie, The Master usurped the body of the EMT, played by Eric Roberts.

When Romana changed from actress Mary Tamm to Lalla Ward, script editor Douglas Adams of "Hitchhiker's Guide..." fame, caused a stir among fans by showing Romana changing into various forms before deciding on becoming the blonde beauty Ward.

Fans were upset that this could be interpreted as violating the 12 regenerations rule and that it seems to say that Time Lords & Ladies can choose their next appearance and personality.

Perhaps it could be said that in "The Brain of Morbius" The Doctor was remembering faces that he had tried out without making them "permanent".
 
So, it's just a mistake....
I found a website concerning it (http://www.physics.mun.ca/~sps/serials/4k.html)

And it seems that (like the Romana choosing her regeneration) this was another part added by the script editor to the original writer's script, and also inspires controversy amongst fans to this day.

One addition Holmes made to Dicks' scripts was the inclusion of the "mind battle" between the Doctor and Morbius, a scene which continues to inspire controversy amongst fans to this day. In the scene in question, images of the Time Lords' past incarnations flash up on the screen as they duel. This includes a painted rendition of one of the clay busts of Morbius seen elsewhere in the episode, a shot of the Fourth Doctor taken from another camera feed, and still photographs of the Morbius monster, the Third Doctor (Jon Pertwee), the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton), the First Doctor (William Hartnell) and eight other individuals in various period costumes. It was the intent of Hinchcliffe and Holmes that these eight faces represent previously-unseen incarnations of the Doctor before Hartnell's, although this would be seemingly contradicted in other stories. Fans have used the fact that Morbius loses the battle as evidence that the faces are actually his past incarnations; this, however, neglects that Morbius seems to be winning the battle as the faces appear.

Hinchcliffe had originally hoped to secure celebrities to play these "past Doctors", but this did not pan out. In the event, the photographs were of members of the crew for The Brain Of Morbius and The Seeds Of Doom, the subsequent serial which was in preproduction at the time. These included Hinchcliffe, Holmes, Barry, Seeds director Douglas Camfield, production manager George Gallacio, Seeds writer Robert Banks Stewart, and production assistants Chris Baker and Graeme Harper. However, this decision incurred the wrath of Equity, the actors' union, because of the use of non-Equity members for the scene. A special payment was made to Equity by the BBC as restitution.

Every source I can find quotes the Doctor having regenerated seven times, yet it was clearly the intention here to show eight incarnations previous to William Hartnell.

Yet in 'Mawdryn Undead' Peter Davidson says that he has 12 regenerations and has already used 4!!!

I guess that continuity was never a strong point in Doctor Who.
 
Originally posted by Dave
Yet in 'Mawdryn Undead' Peter Davidson says that he has 12 regenerations and has already used 4
Well actually he was correct.
Hartnell to Troughton (1st regeneration)
Troughton to Pertwee (2nd regeneration)
Pertwee to Tom Baker (3rd regeneration)
Tom Baker to Davison (4th regeneration)

He had used up 4 regenerations at that time.

12 regenerations leads to 13 incarnations from Hartnell to __________.

-csâ„¢
 
I'll have to concede that is not a mistake then, but now that the new series has been running for a year I see that the BBC Doctor Who website mentions he may have more than 12 Regenerations (13 Incarnations) due to the fact that the it was revealed that the Time Lords were wiped out in a Time War with the Daleks.

I wondered what difference that made, then I read speculation that the limit might not be a natural one, but a limit imposed by the High Council to prevent rogue timelords thinking of themselves as 'gods.'

In the story 'The Five Doctors', the Master was offered a new cycle of regenerations by the High Council in exchange for his help so it would seem the Time Lords have the ability to bypass the limit.

As obcooke said "this being science fiction... Dr. Who has never been a series to let consistancy stand in the way of telling a story."
 
Boy, Dave, it may take a while but sooner or later you get around to everything...

Just kidding, but you must admit that almost 2-1/2 years between message and reply has to be some kind of record.

Well, picking up the thread...

How many [regenerations] has the Doctor had?

The producers, according to a panel at last years Atlanta Dragoncon, said that they were going to assume that Eckleston(sp?) was the same Doctor as the FOX movie, so they could save a regeneration and not have to begin with a regeneration, but jump right into the action and mystery of introducing the Doctor to a new generation.
 
So I'm slow ;)

I can't believe Ecclestone and McGann are the same Doctor. They are too different. I think they need to actually reference that in the series for me to believe it, and that seems unlikely now that I've seen him Regenerate again.

But my point was that there is now no limit to his Regenerations.
 
Well, hopefully we won't have to find out too soon. I'm hoping for a long-running Doctor or two. And yes, I accidentally stumbled upon another spoiler about contract signings that have me knowing more than I want to already.

Getting back to the other point. In "Rose" The Doctor makes note of his ears in the mirror... "Could be worse."

So it seems that he's still getting used to his face. Which you wouldn't expect to be the case if he'd been through a Time War. And doesn't a Time War sound like just the sort of thing that would cause a Time Lord to have to regenerate?

I think it's safe to assume they are not the same Doctor.

And since I 'm a traditionalist, I hope that we don't have to find out the specifics of the regeneration limit too soon.

Long Live The Doctor, Every One of Them.
 
Ive honestly never heard the rumor that Eccleston and McGan were ever meant to be the same incarnation. But listen. the limit can be worked aroun. If the writers could do it for the Master, then they can do something similiar for the Doctor. Only something more ethical than the way the Master managed to stay around.

When and if the time comes that the Doctor reaches his so-called last life onscreen, I am sure it will be addressed then. But it is still too premature to worry.

Besides, some of the 1980s continuity seems to already have been retconned for the sake of the new series, just as the 1980s stories seemed to rewrite ideas seen in the earlier decades of the program. so why worry over what the Peter Davison Doctor said in Mawdryn Undead and elsewhere?

I mean Patrick Troughton's Doctor DID once say he or his people could live forever, barring accidents. So it depends what story you are inclined to take as gospel over the others that deal with the subject.
 
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I found this post to find the answers to these questions. Their are any number of possibilities. One of the under emphasized similarities between Jack and the Doctor is the Doctor was an agent for a time agency which had erased the doctors memories for his crimes along with banishment to earth...

So we never really know what generation the doctor is on.

The doctor talks about being schoolmates with the Master a child several generations after the invention of time travel and yet he also seems to be a contemporary of Rasilon, Omiga, and the other... Never named.

As for the lives, as lord president he would have had access to every known way to extend life... In the Brain of Mobius mentioned in an earlier post we learn of flames that can preserve life indefinitely. Turlows' fathers' prison planet had similar properties. The human lazerious technology apparently influenced by the master could reduce age. Humans through out the series expand their lives Milena. The master was offered all his regenerations back in the 5 doctors.

My question has always been is the doctor the Other mentioned in the trinity of the birth of time travel. If the Doctor is half human, is Susan even a time lord when potentially only eighth. Who is the Castilan?

As for consistency the Doctor is a time traveler in a multi-verse that the time lords once had total access to. The show could be done with puppets and it would be consistent.
 
I cant work out if David Tennants "Regeneration" after getting hit by a Dalek in 'The Stolen Earth' whether he has regenerated 11 times altogether and Matt Smith is actually the 12th Doctor? :confused: Its rather confusing, and also since the TARDIS is the last one and no longer has a link to the Time Lords and Gallifrey(?) will he still have a limit on his regenerations cause it was mentioned on earlier series that its the doctors link with the TARDIS that helps him regenerate and he "couldn't survive without it".
 
As the modern Dr Who seems to have taken no notice of most of what happened in the series since the 60s I'm sure when the 13th regeneration is needed it will just happen with just a flimsy excuse which will be swallowed by the new audience but will infuriate long time Whovians.
 
Its rather confusing, and also since the TARDIS is the last one and no longer has a link to the Time Lords and Gallifrey(?) will he still have a limit on his regenerations cause it was mentioned on earlier series that its the doctors link with the TARDIS that helps him regenerate and he "couldn't survive without it".

Maybe they're already heading down this road... look at how much damage there was to the TARDIS from DT to MS. There's never been anything like that before, nor any real need this time. Unless there's something else coming along...
 
Its rather confusing, and also since the TARDIS is the last one and no longer has a link to the Time Lords and Gallifrey(?) will he still have a limit on his regenerations cause it was mentioned on earlier series that its the doctors link with the TARDIS that helps him regenerate and he "couldn't survive without it".

No wonder the Doctor looked worried at the end of Vincent and the Doctor - I hadn't realised how closely he's tied into the TARDIS...
 
Remember the end of RTD sesason 1 Doctor number 9 after he kisses Rose and before he regenerates, he states quite clearkly he should not have spaked up all the energy from the Tardis, no time lord has ever done that.This could be a get out clause and enable regenerations to continue.
 
As the modern Dr Who seems to have taken no notice of most of what happened in the series since the 60s I'm sure when the 13th regeneration is needed it will just happen with just a flimsy excuse which will be swallowed by the new audience but will infuriate long time Whovians.


I doubt that they'll even mention what number regeneration it is. Seems to me that they threw out the entire concept of a regeneration limit, along with the rest of his past, when the second incarnation of the show began.

I wish they'd thrown out the Daleks too. They keep getting destroyed, totally and absolutely and for all time We Swear!, but they keep getting polished off and brought back into service for a ratings boost. They've sort of become the Jason Voorhees (Friday The 13th) of the science fiction world.
 
Reckon it will depend on the creative team. A good creative team will be able to turn the 13th regen into something exciting and spectacular. Maybe have the 13th as a threat to the fabric of space-time or something.
 
I'm still keeping my fingers crossed for the emergence of the Valeyard - and then some jiggery-pokery to get us to Doc 14.

Of course, Matt Smith is still only 27, so the eleventh Doctor could potentially last quite some time...;):D
 
Of course, Matt Smith is still only 27, so the eleventh Doctor could potentially last quite some time...;):D
Matt Smith has only been in the job for a year, give the boy an chance to get his feet under the TARDIS console before we talk about who's next!

This is a very old thread. I started it before this new 'imagination' of Doctor Who had begun. I now concede that it doesn't matter what happened in the old series and they can pretty much do anything with the Doctor now. It does seem that we have not seen the last of the Time Lords and the Valeyard though.
 

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