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'Doctor Who': Could These Other Doctor-Companion Duos Survive The Events Of 'Wild Blue Yonder?

Into The Wild Blue Yonder..

By Kristy AndersonPublished 5 months ago 7 min read
Credit: BBC

The fan reception to Doctor Who's second 60th anniversary special, 'Wild Blue Yonder', has earned mostly positive reception from fans. After the defeat of Beep the Meep in the first special, The Fourteenth Doctor and Donna Noble's plans to visit Donna's Grandfather, Wilf, are disrupted when Donna spills coffee on the Tardis console, with the damaged Tardis then hurtling The Doctor and Donna to a seemingly abandoned ship at the edge of the universe. Things get worse when The Tardis's Hostile Action Displacement System is activated, and it leaves The Doctor and Donna behind to face the Not-things, creepy creatures who attempt to become perfect copies of our two heroes.

While Companion-lite and Doctor-lite stories are common (On average, we get at least one of each per NuWho season) a story like 'Wild Blue Yonder', featuring only the show's two main actors, is relatively unique, and was very much sold on the chemistry and performances of regular co-stars David Tennant and Catherine Tate.

Thanks to it's unique nature, some Whovians online have struck up a discussion of other Doctor-Companion duos who could have survived the special, with some names coming up more than others. Let's take a look at some of the pairs fans think could have survived 'Wild Blue Yonder'.

The Ninth Doctor and Rose Tyler

They're The Doctor and companion pair who helped bring Doctor Who back to life after it's long hiatus, but could The Ninth Doctor and Rose Tyler have survived a confrontation with the Not-Things? It's hard to say. While the pair develop a close bond over the single series they share on screen together before The Ninth Doctor regenerates into The Tenth, their comparitively short time together would put Nine and Rose at a disadvantage.

Differentiating the Not-Things from the genuine article requires a deep knowledge of every single detail of a person's appearance. As close and Nine and Rose become, they are simply not together long enough to have built that level of familiarity.

Perhaps the reason Nine and Rose came up so often in fan conversations was simply wishing to not go with the more obvious choice of Rose and the Tenth Doctor.

However, in recent years, Christopher Eccleston has become more open to discussion of his time on Doctor Who, even participating in a series of Big Finish Audio dramas as the Ninth Doctor, and he and Billie Piper have shared friendly reunions at various conventions. Some Whovians expressed the desire to see a Nine and Rose version of 'Wild Blue Yonder' more for interest in how Eccleston and Piper, as performers, would have tackled the story.

The Seventh Doctor and Ace

The Seventh Doctor and Dorothy McShane, better known as Ace, were the final Doctor and Companion of Doctor Who's classic era, before the show went on it's very long hiatus in 1989. Ace, one of the youngest companions of the latter part of the classic era, referred to The Doctor as Professor, and shared a fond, almost Father-Daughter like relationship with him. With the classic series cancellation, the popular duo's story was left open ended, with many Whovians wishing they'd had more time with them.

So, how would Seven and Ace have fared in the 'Wild Blue Yonder'? Ace definitely knows her Professor better than any other character of the time. But, The Seventh is widely believed to be the most mysterious, and at times scary, of the classic Doctors, and despite his fondness for Ace, he was not above manipulating his young companion. Despite believing his actions were for her own good, this may have eventually caused issues between them, as during her appearance in the BBC Centenary special 'The Power of The Doctor'.

The Seventh Doctor's mysterious nature and manipulative behaviour could keep Ace from truly knowing him to the level of differentiating him from his Not-Thing double. However, this duo's ability to remain comparitively cool under pressure gives them a better chance than some, as it would slow the Not-Things' ability to copy them.

The Thirteenth Doctor and Yasmin Khan

Of the four companions The Thirteenth Doctor travelled with throughout her tenure, she was undoubtedly closest to Yasmin Khan. Yasmin, affectionately referred to as Yaz by The Doctor, was also the only companion to remain with Thirteen for the entirety of her era, and is eventually shown to develop feelings for The Doctor.. feelings The Doctor is sometimes hinted to reciprocate, but will not act upon, to spare herself the pain of another inevitable loss.

Thanks to Thirteen's Tardis being relatively crowded early on, Yaz perhaps lacks the character development she truly deserved, while the latter part of the era has Yaz becoming frustrated at The Doctor's tendency to keep information from her. This would seem to place them in poor stead in the event they were to face the Not-Things. However, some fans place a lot of these issues on poor witing. Both The Thirteenth Doctor and Yaz show glimpses of great potential that sadly went mostly untapped during their time as Doctor Who's leads.

A version of 'Wild Blue Yonder' with these two characters written at their absolute best would be very interesting, and the bond they share may just be enough to help them escape the Not-Things alive.

The Fourth Doctor and Sarah-Jane Smith

To the general non-Whovian public, The Fourth Doctor is easily the most recognisable incarnation of the Classic Who era, and for many, The Fourth Doctor and Sarah-Jane Smith are the definitive Doctor-Companion pairing, against whom all who come after will forever be measured.

They are certainly close, with even later incarnations of The Doctor remembering and referring to Sarah as their best friend. So, surely Four and Sarah-Jane would be a shoo-in for survival against the Not-Things, right? Well, not necessarily. As much as The Doctor loves Sarah-Jane, he is often absent minded regarding various facts about her life, and as well as Sarah may like to think she knows The Doctor, the Classic Doctors were traditionally much less open with their companions than their later NuWho counterparts.

Being sentimental favourites among both old and new Whovians, we would like to believe that Four and Sarah would escape the 'Wild Blue Yonder', but in reality, these twp may have struggled.

The Eleventh Doctor and River Song

Yes, technically, River Song isn't a companion, but as the woman who married The Doctor, she qualifies for a spot as someone who could potentially best the Not-Things with him. Over the course of their time together, River grows to know The Doctor, particularly his Eleventh incarnation, more intimately than any other character, and is the only person confirmed to know The Doctor's true name. The Doctor grows to know River just as well.

This would appear to position the couple quite well in the face of the Not-Things. Unfortunately, the fact that The Doctor and River tend to meet in the wrong order, and therefore at varying levels of intimacy, could prove an issue. Their survival in 'Wild Blue Yonder' would all depend on timing. If the Not-Things faced Eleven and River at a point where they were relatively in-sync, the creepy creatures wouldn't stand much chance.

The Twelfth Doctor and Clara Oswald

Many Whovians claimed that 'Wild Blue Yonder' felt very much like a Steven Moffat episode, and that they could quite easily see The Twelfth Doctor and Clara Oswald in the lead roles. As with River and The Eleventh Doctor, Twelve and Clara's chances against the Not-Things would very much depend on what point in their timeline they faced them.

In the early days of The Twelfth Doctor, Clara struggles with the changes in him, and the pair are quite regularly at odds. However, as their time together goes on, they grow increasingly close, with Clara even beginning to think like The Doctor. In 'The Zygon Inversion', Twelve knows Clara's face well enough to tell when her Zygon double, Bonnie, has given up her ambitions of War, and by the end of series nine, the two are closely bonded enough to fulfil the prophecy of the Hybrid, a merging of human and Time Lord.

If Twelve and Clara faced the Not-Things as they approached their Hybrid days, it is easy to see them emerging victorious. However, had such a confrontation occurred early in their tenure, the story may have had a far more tragic ending.

'Wild Blue Yonder' was one of the most unique Doctor Who episodes in recent years, and is sure to continue being discussed in times to come.

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About the Creator

Kristy Anderson

Passionate About all things Entertainment!

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  • Kendall Defoe 4 months ago

    A lot for a fan to consider. You have looking over my notes now... Excellent work!

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