Listen: it’s hard out there for a classic Doctor Who actor. Here we are, having just celebrated the show’s five — count ‘em, five — decades of life, and when it came time to mark the occasion, did your phone ring? Noooooo. Instead they went with the two newish skinny blokes with the good hair. And when they wanted an older Doctor, did your phone ring? Noooooo. Instead that Moffat sonnovabitch went and invented a new one! A new old one! And called John Hurt! You could have played a new old one. You did a damn fine job playing one of the old old ones back in the day. Still got fans showing up in your costume, asking you to autograph their babies. It’s an outrage! It’s a disgrace! (And let’s not even speak of the one guy they did bring back, that old backstabber. He’s definitely off the Christmas list.) If only there were someone to tell your tale of heartbreak and indignation!
Well, there is. Sort of. It’s called The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot. It stars former Who leads Sylvester McCoy, Colin Baker, Paul McGann, and Peter Davison (the latter of whom also wrote and directed it). If you’ve been wondering whether all the angry and disappointed comments from this lot about not being invited to be a part of The Day of the Doctor were genuine or just part of the show, this should be your answer. It’s also bloody funny, so give it a watch up top if you haven’t already.
In a case of art imitating life-but-funnier, The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot follows the plight of a pack of former Doctors determined to find a way into The Day of the Doctor. Or at least sneak onto the set. Given how much fun they seem to be having skewering the notion of the passed-over Doctors frustrated to be left out in the cold, we can safely assume all that vitriol tossed out by the gang in the months leading up to the special was just a bit of theater, culminating in the punchline that is The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot. Kudos to them for being good sports, and it’s great to see them having fun with this rather than trying to cram every single one of them into the narrative of The Day of the Doctor — it was packed enough already with three(ish) Doctors.
Honestly, I enjoyed this nearly as much as I did the actual 50th anniversary special. The cameos and Colin Baker’s delivery of the line, “Really?” were worth my half hour alone.
Be sure to watch all the way to the end. It turns out those clever boys might have made the cut after all…