With the Doctor impersonating a university lecturer in Doctor Who series 10, it feels kind of appropriate that one of his best-known tools is about to take its place in the Oxford English Dictionary.
‘Sonic screwdriver’ will be added to the OED in June this year, joining other Doctor Who entries ‘Tardis’, ‘Dalek’ and ‘Cyberman’.
“The sonic screwdriver won’t get you out of every tricky situation (as the Fourth Doctor had to admit) but it definitely worth having in your TARDIS toolbox, and, pretty soon, it’s going to be available in that other big blue cabinet of endless curiosity, the OED,” a blog post on the Oxford Dictionaries website revealed.
As well as showing off their Whovian credentials with an impressive potted history of the Doctor’s “multipurpose tool and get-out-of-jail-free card”, the blog post also points out that the term sonic screwdriver has travelled far beyond the BBC1 sci-fi series.
“Outside of the Whoniverse, the sonic screwdriver has become a type of ultimate tool of the future, and has inspired real-life attempts to mimic the Gallifreyan technology, including a large tabletop machine created by Dundee University scientists, which is capable of lifting and turning objects using beams of ultrasound,” the post explains.
And given that the Doctor has taken to hoarding past models on his desk at the university (picture above), perhaps new companion and eager student Bill might be able to improve on Dundee’s efforts?