Tom Baker. David Tennant. Two iconic Doctors finally meet in Doctor Who: Out of Time. Does the story live up to such an exciting meeting?
It’s taken a long time, but it’s finally happened. The Fourth and Tenth Doctors – arguably two of the most popular incarnations in Doctor Who history – finally meet, in Big Finish’s extremely special audio story Out of Time. But how? And how well does it work?
Hearing Tom Baker and David Tennant speak to each other as their iconic characters is as joyous as you’d expect. While the two have occasionally shared a story together – both on TV (The Day of the Doctor) and on audio (spoilers for which one!) – one of them has usually appeared in a cameo role, never meeting the other. So to bring them together, at last, is definitely satisfying, and feels like a real clash of eras.
Since this is such a huge meeting and the story is only one hour long, writer Matt Fitton wisely keeps the story simple. The reason why these two Doctors meet is pretty straightforward – essentially, they’re both at the wrong place at the wrong time (as usual).
And, of course, it’s not new enemies that they’re facing either. Because naturally, when two of the most iconic Doctors show up, their most iconic foes are along for the ride: the Daleks!
Exploring the Doctors
Keeping the story nice and easy helps Out of Time to focus on other things. Particularly when it comes to the Doctors. Personally speaking, I always enjoy a multi-Doctor story that allows particular incarnations to be explored in fresh ways. This is a key reason why I enjoyed Cold Fusion, The Day of the Doctor, and last year’s Daughter of the Gods so much.
Out of Time is very much along the same lines. Matt Fitton has made sure to tell this story at clear points in each Doctor’s life. More than that: he’s made sure that, while he’s keen to highlight the similarities between the two Doctors, he’s just as keen to highlight the differences, too.
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It’s not just in terms of outward personality that Four and Ten are different. At their core, they’re recognizably the same person: both heroic, both keen to save the day and stop the Daleks at all costs. But they also have different outlooks on life.
For example, Four is in many ways carefree and eager to find a new companion. But Ten chooses to be alone. More than that: he knows that he’s coming to the end of his days, at least as this incarnation. Seeing who he used to be only helps to remind him just how much he’ll lose all over again when he inevitably regenerates.
Out of Time is exactly as much fun as you’d expect. Hearing Baker and Tennant share a story together is fantastic and is guaranteed to put a massive grin on your face. The character exploration is also more than welcome. While Four isn’t explored as much as Ten is in this story, considering how happy the former is, it’s also understandable. Overall, it’s a highly entertaining multi-Doctor story, and I’m eager to hear the other two entries in the series.
Are you excited about Four meeting Ten? Out of the two of them, which one is your favorite? Which Doctors would you love to hear meet each other? Let us know in the comments below.