This week Whovian Leap looks at the Doctors in their predecessor’s clothes.
When one Doctor regenerates into another, fans are never anything less than totally enthralled by the new incumbent. They watch his every move with eagle eyes and hang on his every word. More often than not the new Doctor is still wearing the old Doctor’s outfit and this always seems a little odd. The clothes are a reminder of the Doctor we have just lost. He may have departed but it is as if he is haunting us through his clothes which are still before our eyes.
This was not always the case. When the First Doctor regenerates into the Second, so do most of his clothes. His cloak remains, as does his ring. It slips off later though, because of the new Doctor’s smaller fingers.
When Two becomes Three, we enjoy only the briefest of glimpses of Pertwee in Troughton’s scruffy clothes, when he collapses out of the Tardis.
The Fourth doesn’t wear the frills of the Third for long, but prefers to dress up in a variety of costumes – much to the Brigadier’s displeasure – before settling on the floppy hat and scarf we know and love.
The Fifth Doctor looks a little overwhelmed in the Fourth Doctor’s bulky costume, wrapped up in that never-ending scarf. A second clothing regeneration occurs. The Doctor’s boots mysteriously change into shoes.
The Sixth Doctor cuts a fine figure in the Fifth’s mud-splattered cricketing gear. In real life the striped trousers had to be adjusted for the incoming actor to be able to fit into them. Over twenty years later in “Time Crash” we see an older Fifth Doctor now with a slightly fuller figure wearing the very same enlarged trousers.
The Seventh Doctor both looks and acts the clown in Sixth’s colourful and now slightly baggy clothes.
The next three regenerations don’t show the Doctor in his predecessor’s clothes. The Eighth doesn’t wear the Seventh’s clothes as he is wearing a shroud at the moment of regeneration. We see a reflection of the young War Doctor’s face but we don’t see him in the Eighth’s attire. Likewise we don’t see the Ninth in the War Doctor’s apparel.
Surely the Tenth Doctor in the Ninth’s leather jacket is too good looking and youthful to be the Doctor? However by the end of the episode with his striped brown suit and Converse trainers he adopts the geek-chic look and comes across as much more Doctorly.
The muscular Eleven squeezes into the soon to become “raggedy” suit when the Tardis crashes.
The Twelfth Doctor briefly wears the Eleventh’s outfit (now without the trademark bow-tie) before Madame Vastra puts him to bed in Victorian nightclothes.
What does the future hold? Let’s just hope we don’t see a newcomer in the Twelfth Doctor’s red-lined jacket for many years to come!