The lineage of newWho
9. Nine was weird. He was a soldier, still. he wore a leather jacket and walked like a broken man. He had lost everything in the fire, and every day he lived he lost more. He had seen his friends die, his comrades, his family and all those innocent people he never had the time to meet. And he could see them dying. Again. And again. And again. Until he couldn’t do anything else but stare. Knowing he was responsible. He had fixed it now, yes, but for what cost? And he looked around, and he saw planets, still burning from fires he could never put out on his own.
And rose came. And she brought peace and happiness and for her, he would go to the end of the universe for her. How full of innocence she was, sleeping in a room made of pink, but already understanding how the world seemed to work. And how it didn’t. Full of opinions is a good way to describe the girl he first met. He didn’t like Mickey much, the guy was aggressive and competitive more than that he had brains. So he took her with him and he loved her. And Jack came, admits war and destruction, and he saw a man turn good. So he came along too. And in the end, he loved them more than he hated the Daleks.
So he turned good too. Love above hate, that is how you could describe him the best, he was a good man, living in a nightmare.
10. Ten was smiles. And laughter. He jumped around like a little puppy trying not to stay still for too long. Ten griefed. A lifetime in war feeling like past. But still pressing on his back. he saved people. Many of them. Took them with him to see the wonder in their eyes. They were happy, so was he.
But he could get angry too. Angry for those people that still did wrong, a lifetime of war, bigger than they could imagine. And still, it happened. Again and again. But he loved Rose, and he accepted Mickey for the boy loved Rose too. So he accepted his fate with it. he was the man who saved, rarely thanked. Not deserving forgiveness, not deserving praise, but secretly wishing it. And when he feared that he had lost the feeling. The feeling of guilt. He counted. The children of Gallifrey, the people he had to protect. But there were simply too many.
And he lost Rose. Like he had lost Jack. And then came Martha brilliant and clever. She realised her mistakes and realised that the Doctor didn’t fit in her life, so she left him, and he let her go. Sad, because he had no family to put above his companions. And Donna came and she brought Wilfred. Donna was different. She didn’t take any of the bullshit of his grief, she didn’t let him determine her life. And he needed her. Needed her when he almost gave up on time, seeing all events as inevitable. It wasn’t her fault that he took too far.
In the end, you could say that he held onto his grief for too long. Because after grief comes acceptance. And he wasn’t ready for that yet. He wasn’t ready for a life without that guilt weighing on him. He was young in a way. Young and still foolishly in love. Perhaps losing that love was the best thing that happened to him, perhaps the worst. But he found other love in other people, some understanding, some not. But he learned from all. And when he died, he finally accepted that it was all over, even the four knocks faded away. Gallifrey couldn’t be saved, but he could.
11. And now we come to eleven. His supposedly final life. Eleven seemed younger in many ways, trying to hide the wrinkles in his soul with a bowtie and quick feet. he needed Amy Pond and Rory Williams. They taught him that love sometimes means patience, and in turn, he showed them the universe. Gave them a wedding never to forget and fought every planet in the sky to get their child back.
But amidst all that. Amidst all the running and wonders and quick hellos. He waited. He saved planets and he waited. He waited for something he couldn’t really pinpoint until it was said out loud: he wanted to be forgiven. He had saved so many worlds. He had fixed the rough edges of the time war, restarted the universe itself. And now he wanted to retire, find a nice spot and just lie down. But as long as no one told him that he was allowed to do that, he couldn’t now. So he saved some more worlds, some more planets. And still, it wasn’t enough.
People didn’t seem to learn. He’d save them and a hundred years later they needed him again. And again. They were dictators and idiots and hypocrites. So when he saw his friends in pain, when he saw them lose a child. He flipped out. And he exploded. And he couldn’t be stopped anymore. It started when he was ten, but now, he knew how he could break people. He knew what hurt more and pressed on it till they fled when his name was said.
It’s why he needed River. Of all people. The person he had hunted down the world for, standing in front of him, his wife. His love. Not yet now, but someday. And she didn’t show him patience when he was angry. She didn’t show him hatred either. She showed him a different kind of love, the kind that is appropriate for the way he was acting. A twelve-year-old.
So, in the end, he needed her the most. The woman who tested his morality but didn’t take any bullshit from him at all. For her, he grew up.
And when Clara came, so alike Donna but without the armour to protect herself. He could laugh with her and promise protection. He opened his palm for her, but she was the one to grab it. He wasn’t all grown up, still with a liking to bow ties and weird presents. But he needed her now. Someone who could grab control, who didn’t take bullshit and believed in an infinite number of second chances. She didn’t need compliments, she needed achievements, so she strived for greatness, even if greatness was beyond her. I always loved their chemistry.
12. Now he had lived longer than any timelord. And he had learned not to hide. He didn’t cover up his wrinkles, and instead of a younger face gave himself the right to complain and the mission to give everyone a chance. He had a home, he couldn’t find and when he did, he didn’t need it. He was a learned man, a magician. And in his earlier regeneration years, complicated.
He didn’t fit in one category or the other. He was many things but not stupid for not knowing. And he asked his friends. But even his friends couldn’t tell him what his morality was supposed to be. What “right” was. Which viewpoint the ultimate.
And while Clara decided she wanted a normal life next to the adventures, and Missy just really liked thump wrestling with nuclear weapons and earth on the line too much, he was lost. But he slowly found it again. With River. And with himself. And in impossible heroes and brave soldiers. He learned that love is a promise, you never break. So he promised Missy he would show her the universe if she just turned good.
Clara decided her own fate, as she always had. And he was stubborn enough to interfere and give her a second chance. For her, he wiped his memory. And when Bill arrived, he didn’t do it for the same reason.
There are many things to tell and to know about twelve, the many decisions he made. He was a madman and a lover and a friend and manual, all in one. You can’t give him one moral when morality was his confusion. Sympathy, not his area. Even when everything in your area, some things are just too hard. And in the end, what will kill him? I personally believe, only he can. When he accepts too, that the time of grief is over. He isn’t a soldier anymore.
And only then thirteen can take her place and start the new day. At Christmas, the new era begins. I wish Jodie Whittaker and Chris Chibnall the best of luck. And I trust that we as Whovians can do the same. In the end, it’s a show for kids, after all.