11 Episodes of Eleven: Night and the Doctor Mini Episodes

#8 Night and the Doctor written by Steven Moffat and Tom MacRae

With the release of the DVD box sets, the BBC and Moffat did something extra special in that they included extra mini episodes with the Doctor Who cast that weren’t available anywhere else. With the season 6 box set release in 2011 came these 5 adorable mini episodes that focus on the Doctor and what he does with his nights. It is difficult to find the clips on the web, and the only versions I found have french subtitles. So, watch, enjoy and practice your french with my number 8 pick in this 11 Episodes of Eleven series.

See them here:

Bad Night

Good Night

First Night

Last Night

Up All Night

Now, even if you are a really hardcore Doctor Who fan, you might not know of or might not have seen these specials unless you own the season 6 box set. I happened upon them on Pinterest and immediately became enamored with the behind-the-scenes look at my number one ship, River and Eleven as well as details into the complicated relationship between Amy and the Doctor. We all know that the Doctor has some crazy adventures, but what we don’t know is what he does while the Ponds are sleeping. In the first episode, Bad Night, we see the Doctor in his fanciest dress, and it is interesting to note that Eleven doesn’t sport the usual tweed and bowtie ensemble in any of these shorts. Apparently, in the evenings he becomes the dapper fellow, courting his wife and having misadventures. We don’t see River in this episode, but Amy knows that she is out there, getting into mischief with the Doctor across the galaxies. Amy awakens to the phone ringing in the TARDIS, tries to help but ultimately messes things up and then attempts to connect emotionally with the Doctor about her past. He quickly calls out for Rory, states that it isn’t his “turn”, and runs off with River to save the commonwealth. It is a 3 1/2 minute gem that establishes a kind of “home life” in the TARDIS with the Ponds and the Doctor and reminds us that there is so much we do not know about the mysterious Timelord.

Her Majesty, the Queen of the Fishbowl.
Her Majesty, the Queen of the Fishbowl.

If Bad Night sets up the emotional distance between Amy and the Doctor, Good Night reminds us that they are indeed best friends and that time travel remains wibbley-wobbley, timey-wimey. While the Doctor, River and Marilyn (Monroe??) are saving a haunted orchestra, among other things, Amy is questioning her importance in the Doctor’s life. To remind her of the ridiculousness of the universe and her specific place in it, the Doctor asks Amy to relive her saddest memory, which happens to be dropping an ice cream at a carnival. He then suggests Amy give her former self an ice cream with advice on how to deal with the disappointments of life. “Cheer up, have an ice cream,” Amy tells her childhood self, as she finally begins to understand why she can remember not having parents and then having them, how Rory the Centurion could have waited 2000 years for her and how her life is forever changed by her interactions with the Doctor. What our favorite Gallifreyan is trying to teach Amy is that time and space are never going to make any sense but she should cheer up and just go with it. This is the mantra of the Eleventh Doctor, and why I love him. He is resilient, he is sentimental and our guide through the insanity of the universe.

Amy and the Doctor prepare to face little Amelia Pond.
Amy and the Doctor prepare to face little Amelia Pond.

Finally, we get not just a mention of my girl, River, but actual big hair herself! The title First Night refers to River Song’s first night in the prison Storm Cage, sentenced to 12 consecutive life sentences (12 regenerations?) for murdering the Doctor at Lake Silencio, whom we all know know she never really killed. This is the River that doesn’t know the Doctor yet, who just regenerated from Mels and who just received the TARDIS blue journal on her bedside from the Doctor. This means, the Doctor and River haven’t had any adventures together yet, and yet she is still doing time for her man, just to keep his secret. She is so badass. Anywho, River and the Doctor have a date to see a billion stars, and when she  goes down to the wardrobe–first right, second left, just passed the Helter Skelter–the Doctor lands to a big surprise. There is another River who slams into the TARDIS in the middle of a firefight, calls the Doctor a “nostalgic idiot,” implying they have been there before, and then proceeds to pass out in his arms. The scene cuts and we are left to wonder what the Doctor plans to do with two Rivers in the TARDIS.

River is so darn cheeky.
River is so darn cheeky.

Okay, while the other 3 episodes are funny and cute and are self-contained stories, Last Night is an immediate continuation of First Night, and hits you right in the River Song feels. While the younger River is looking for the wardrobe, we meet River #2, who passes out after being shot out by Sontarans and has been in Storm Cage for five years. Immediately, the Doctor and her have a different repartee–oh, like a couple who has been together for a few years. She notices the dress he has brought for the other River, goes into a jealous rage and huffs off looking for the “other woman”. In the meantime, River #1 comes out of the wardrobe, barely missing herself, wonders aloud who the Doctor is talking to and then retreats back to change her clothes. Suddenly, a third River Song enters the TARDIS and immediately, the Doctor realizes that she is a River further along in their relationship. I love the subtle shift in tone that Eleven takes on with each River, and with this newest edition, he turns into an old married man. Instead of answering her question about the dress, which River #2 also asked, he instead directs River #3 to change the bulb on the TARDIS. Suddenly, a second Doctor enters the TARDIS, grabs River #3 and turns to go. River #3 then tells Doctor #1 that they are going to the Singing Towers of Dorillium, and hearts across the fandom begin to break. Yes, Doctor #1, the second you is spending his last night with River Song because her next adventure will be at the Library, where she dies for the Tenth Doctor. OH MY FEELS!

If this doesn't make your heart hurt, you probably have no soul. Are you Sam Winchester??
If this doesn’t make your heart hurt, you probably have no soul. Are you Sam Winchester??

Goodness. This just got real. Seems that the Doctors, no matter how much they don’t want to, must get River to that Library. It is a sobering moment, and very Moffat-y. I love that Moffat has created such a character as River Song but does he have to kill my feels every damn time?? Gaaaah! Luckily, the last mini episode, Up All Night, has nothing to do with River, and it doesn’t even include a cameo from the Doctor.

I will end with this installment because it is adorable and we all know how much I adore Craig and Stormageddon. This particular story is set before the Closing Time episode I rec’d a couple of weeks ago and the Doctor doesn’t actually make an appearance in the 1 1/2 minute short, set at the diningroom table of Craig’s apartment. Up All Night is definitely out of place in this group of mini episodes, but it shares the common theme of understanding a bit of back story in between regular DW episodes. In this, we see Craig and Sophie discussing her weekend out of town, and James Corden (Craig) has perfect comedic timing, as usual. His bumbling portrayal of Craig and the easy way he makes us laugh at the most mundane moments are why Craig remains one of my favorite add-on characters/companions. FYI, season 5 also has 2 mini episodes that are only on the box set, titled “Meanwhile in the TARDIS.”  Click the link and enjoy.

63 days til new Who!!!



The Collectiva Diva

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