Doctor Who boss explains continuity errors in the series

Doctor Who showrunner Russell T Davies has addressed the show’s most famous continuity errors.

In any show that’s been on the air for 60 years, it’s inevitable that plot details will get overlooked or continuity errors will creep in. That’s especially true in a show with a time-traveling police call box!

At his recent BAFTA event Russell T Davies: A Life in Pictures (via The Radio Times), the showrunner explained how he’s open to writing new adventures that could clash with previous events in the Doctor’s life.

“It has destroyed Atlantis three times in its history, and if someone came to me tomorrow with a big story about the destruction of Atlantis, I would do it again,” he explained.

Russell T. Davies at the premiere of Doctor WhoRussell T. Davies at the premiere of Doctor Who

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“In the 60s, with William Hartnell, they went to Troy and made the wooden horse… that wouldn’t stop me from making Troy and the wooden horse again now. I would do it again now.

“It’s not a spoiler, I’m not going to! But you’d just put a line: ‘Oh, a mistake in time, here we are again.'”

There have been too many continuity errors to count in Doctor Who over the decades, but as Davies mentions, Atlantis has been destroyed three different times in its continuity.

In the early days of the series, the Second Doctor was responsible for the fall of Atlantis in “The Undersea Menace”, while the alien Azal would later blame The Daemons for Atlantis’ demise in a 1971 story.

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The third time, the Doctor and Jo Grant narrowly avoided destruction in “The Time Monster” when the beastly Kronos devoured the lost city.

Many such errors have appeared in Doctor Who in the decades since, including discrepancies over how to kill off the Weeping Angels or long-disputed theories about the Doctor’s actual age.

But time can be bent, so Doctor Who is always one line of dialogue away from resolving even the most complicated continuity errors. One example is last year’s special, “The Giggle,” where the toymaker accused the Doctor of making “a jigsaw puzzle” of history before the game-changing two-generation.

Doctor Who It airs on BBC One in the UK and Disney+ Elsewhere. Classic episodes of Doctor Who are available on BBC iPlayer in the UK.

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