We’ll admit it – we’re in serious Doctor Who drought now, still eight months away from any sign of the next series and at a point where we’ll desperately analyse ANY tidbits of information for clues about the plot, even if it is just a picture of Poirot opening a door.
Yes, believe it or not, this innocent-looking picture raises all kinds of questions about what we can expect from the new series – and here are just a few of them.
What’s going on with that door knocker?
Apart from Suchet’s fabulous red suit, the most eye-catching feature in this picture is the ornate door-knocker angled slightly oddly on the door. Now, this could just be part of an existing house the series is using for filming, but it also looks slightly askew and out of place, like it was added for the purposes of the episode.
And tellingly, the lady on the knocker is no ordinary ornament – after a little research, we’re pretty sure that this is a representation of Greek goddess Athena, who appears on lots of door knockers of this type.
Athena, in case you weren’t aware, is the Greek goddess of wisdom, courage, civilization, inspiration, mathematics, law and justice, strength, war strategy and heroic endeavor (among other things), making her a VERY appropriate feature for a series starring a character who also embodies many of those virtues.
So could this knocker and (by extension) the house it stands in front of function as some kind of refuge for the Doctor, or hint at some connection between his values and those of David Suchet’s character The Landlord (see below)?
Or have we completely read this wrong, with the knocker serving a darker, more antagonistic purpose? Like, say, the one found in classic Dickens story a Christmas Carol…
Go on, you know you’d love to see an evil door handle on Doctor Who.
Where has he been walking?
Not to get too Sherlock-y here, but if you zoom in on Suchet’s shoes (or shoe-cets, as we prefer to call them), you can see a fine layer of light coloured dust coating the soles. Has this just come from the flaky stone around him, or has he been off somewhere interesting picking up the residue?
We’re not sure to be honest, but we enjoyed yelling “ENHANCE!” like we were in CSI while looking at them, so at least something good came out of this.
What is the Landlord landlord of?
Now here’s a good question – despite our initial hopes that this announcement indicated that we’d see an episode where the Doctor just gets slaughtered at the pub, the picture seems to imply that Suchet is landlord for some kind of stately home, or otherwise posh and ivy-strewn domicile.
Is this a spooky haunted castle like the one seen in Heaven Sent, or a cheery stopping point for the Doctor and Bill in their travels, some kind of intergalactic B n’ B for them to get a bit of rest and relaxation? It all really depends on what those keys open…
Is he holding TARDIS keys?
This is probably the first thing to pop into many fans’ minds when seeing a Doctor Who character ostentatiously holding keys – but could it be true?
Well, the TARDSI keys seen in the modern series of Doctor Who have all been contemporary Yale locks, unlike these older-fashioned models, and without that telltale shape there’s no reason to suspect this is anything more than an ordinary set of keys.
Then again, we may be overthinking this. There’s no particular reason why Tardis keys HAVE to look like the ones the Doctor currently uses – in fact, in older incarnations his keys ranged from Yale locks to complicated pendants to spade keys, and who’s to say that other Tardises’ keys couldn’t look like the ones the Landlord has?
Various Tardis keys used by the Doctor throughout the series
So maybe don’t rule out these keys being more than they appear JUST yet. Though if they are TARDIS keys, that begs one final question…
Is David Suchet playing a Time Lord?
Hear us out on this one, because we know it’s a bit of a leap. Based on the extremely circumstantial evidence before us, we can see that Suchet’s character shares many of the values of the Doctor and the Time Lords through the Athena door knocker, as well as their penchant for snappy dressing (his red suit is on point, if a little baggy), adventure (the dusty shoes) and, er, having keys to things.
Unconvinced? Well just look at his name – The Landlord isn’t so far away from Time Lord titles like The Doctor, The Master, The Rani, The Valeyard and The Corsair, AND it even has lord in it already, which must save time. And like those other Time Lord names, it could describe his function – a man who minds some sort of location for his people, or looks after weary travellers. It totally makes sense.
Still don’t believe us? What if we Photoshopped the colour of the door so that it looked like a TARDIS? It’s pretty convincing stuff.
STILL no? Jeez, it’s almost like you think we’re massively overanalyzing a simple picture of a man standing near a door holding incredibly mundane objects, making a big deal out of nothing because we have so little to go on about the next series that we need to grasp these kind of straws to sate our insatiable curiosity.
No, that would be ridiculous – it’s obviously the secret Time Lord B n’ B idea. Much more believable.
Doctor Who will return this Christmas, with a new series set to air in 2017