- You may be looking for the Doctor's first TARDIS.
The Doctor's TARDIS — also called the Ship, the Box, and simply the TARDIS (PROSE: Time and Relative, COMIC: Food for Thought) — was the Doctor's primary means of transport. It was capable of travelling through space and time. The Doctor voyaged all across the universe in this vessel, from the Big Bang (TV: Terminus, Castrovalva, AUDIO: Slipback, PROSE: Nothing O'Clock) to the end of the universe, (TV: Utopia, Listen, AUDIO: The Chaos Pool, COMIC: Petals) and from the centre of the universe (TV: Terminus, Twice Upon a Time) to its outermost edges. (TV: Planet of Evil, Underworld) The craft was also capable of travelling between parallel realities, in spite of the fact that it was not specifically designed for inter-dimensional travel. (TV: Inferno, Rise of the Cybermen)
Other Time Lords frequently characterised the Doctor's TARDIS as woefully out-of-date. (TV: The Claws of Axos, The Ribos Operation) Indeed, by at least the time of the Doctor's fourth incarnation, if not much earlier, the model — called a "Type 40" — had been pulled from general service on Gallifrey, and replaced by more advanced models. (TV: The Deadly Assassin, The Invasion of Time)
The craft was prone to a number of technical faults, ranging from depleted resources (TV: An Unearthly Child, The Wheel in Space, Vengeance on Varos) to malfunctioning controls (TV: The Edge of Destruction) to a simple inability to arrive at the proper time or location. (TV: The Visitation, Attack of the Cybermen, The Eleventh Hour, Victory of the Daleks, The Girl Who Waited and many others) However, because the TARDIS was a living being, these "faults" may instead have been at least partially attributed to the manifestation of the ship's free will. Indeed, the TARDIS itself once told the Eleventh Doctor that while it may not have always taken him where he wanted to go, it had always taken him to where he needed to go. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
As the centuries passed and all of the Doctor's companions came and went, the Doctor's faithful TARDIS remained their constant companion. They shared an unbreakable bond, and the Doctor came to feel that in the end, it was just the Doctor and their TARDIS, travelling the universe together. (AUDIO: The Girl Who Never Was, TV: The Doctor's Wife) Such was this bond, that, in an alternate timeline, the TARDIS eventually became the Doctor's final resting place, containing his personal time stream. (TV: The Name of the Doctor)
The Doctor's TARDIS was depicted in many cultures on Earth in a variety of forms, such as being depicted as the temple of the household "gods", the Tenth Doctor and Donna Noble, by Lobus Caecilius's family after they were rescued from the destruction of Pompeii, (TV: The Fires of Pompeii) being painted on a church's stained glass window after the Doctor "smote [a] demon" at a convent in the 1300s, (TV: The End of Time) and the Eleventh Doctor using the power of its image to counter the influence of the Prometheans. (COMIC: Hunters of the Burning Stone) According to the Moment, the noise the TARDIS made when it appeared brought hope to anyone who heard it, no matter how lost they were. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
In his first incarnation, the Doctor implied he had built his TARDIS himself, (TV: The Chase) something which was validated by his eleventh incarnation being able to build a console from scratch. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) Whether there was some truth to this or not, he and others later stated that he had, in fact, stolen it. (TV: The War Games, Frontier in Space, Logopolis, Planet of the Dead, The Big Bang, The Doctor's Wife, The Time of the Doctor, Death in Heaven, COMIC: The World Shapers, AUDIO: The Beginning, Trial of the Valeyard) The TARDIS was once owned by the Time Lady Marianna (AUDIO: The Abandoned) and later by the Time Lord Marnal, and due to his exile at the time of the Doctor's procurement of the TARDIS, he claimed that the Doctor stole it. (PROSE: The Gallifrey Chronicles) Other accounts differ to this, and imply it came from the general, government-controlled "stockpile" of TARDISes after the model had been officially decommissioned. (TV: The Deadly Assassin, PROSE: The Exiles, COMIC: Time & Time Again) The Fourth Doctor told Adric that "it was in for repairs on Gallifrey when [he] borrowed it." When the Alzarian countered that he thought the Doctor outright owned the vehicle, the Doctor said, "Well, on a sort of 'finders, keepers' basis, yes." (TV: Logopolis)
When the Doctor first decided to leave Gallifrey, he had the chance to take a Type 53, but dismissed it as "soulless" in favour of the Type 40. (PROSE: Lungbarrow) The Doctor had received a recommendation for this particular TARDIS from a version of future companion Clara Oswald. She actually stopped him from taking another TARDIS, saying that the navigation system on this one was "a bit knackered" but he'd have more fun with it. He took her suggestion and dismissed the other TARDIS to take the Type 40 instead. When the Doctor stole it, the TARDIS was in a repair shop and two Time Lords were surprised that anyone would want to steal it. (TV: The Name of the Doctor) The TARDIS itself said it was "a museum piece", though this may have been figurative. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) The Doctor would not learn until his fourth incarnation that the TARDIS' previous owner Marianna had been aboard for the entire time. (AUDIO: The Abandoned)
None of these accounts precluded the possibility that he had somehow been responsible for its creation. Indeed, another account compromised between theft and creation. It claimed while the Doctor had not built the TARDIS from scratch, he had substantially modified/rebuilt it. According to this view he achieved control of the TARDIS without using a direct mental link. This let him bypass the feature on most TARDISes which sent a tracking signal to the Time Lords. (PROSE: The Taking of Planet 5) As a result, while the Doctor still had a significant mental link with the TARDIS early in his travels, such as when the ship assisted him with his first regeneration, (TV: The Tenth Planet) he did not impose his will on it, allowing the TARDIS to go where it wished rather than exerting direct control. The TARDIS herself later stated that her unreliability to go where the Doctor wanted was due to her always going to where he was needed. (TV: The Doctor’s Wife)
These accounts notwithstanding, the most direct commentary on the Doctor's acquisition of the TARDIS came from the Doctor and the TARDIS itself. When the Doctor was summoned to be the defence counsellor to the Valeyard in his trial, he exclaimed to Inquisitor Darkel that he confessed to stealing a TARDIS and running away from Gallifrey. (AUDIO: Trial of the Valeyard) At a later point in the Doctor's life, when House transferred the soul of the TARDIS into Idris, the TARDIS gave its side of the story. It confirmed it had been out of commission, a "museum piece", when the First Doctor met it. It also confirmed that the Doctor had stolen it, denying the Eleventh Doctor's attempt to characterise the action as "borrowing". It also stated that it had stolen him, and had no intention of ever giving him back. It was unlocked and had deliberately let him steal it because it wanted to explore the universe and sensed he would be an ideal match. When it asked the Eleventh Doctor what his first incarnation said upon seeing it and touching the console, he recalled saying "you were the most beautiful thing I've ever known". The TARDIS was shown to be very fond of him, admitting as Idris that she had always wanted to say a proper hello to him, but was unable to. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
Model and type Edit
The precise model number of the Doctor's TARDIS was a matter of some confusion, particularly when it was compared to those of other Time Lords. The dematerialisation circuit of the Master's TARDIS was a Mark II, compared to the Doctor's Mark I. (TV: Terror of the Autons) When the Teselecta scanned the Doctor's TARDIS, its records stated the timeship was a TT Type 40, Mark 3. The record also stated it had been reported stolen. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler)
During a visit by the Fourth Doctor to Gallifrey, the Doctor's TARDIS was unambiguously called a "Type 40". At that time, it was made clear that all other Type 40s had long since been officially decommissioned and replaced by newer models. The fact that the Doctor's TARDIS was a Type 40 was not common knowledge, even to the Castellan. (TV: The Deadly Assassin) This designation was used with greater frequency afterward. It was even used by the Eleventh Doctor as an excuse to Winston Churchill for his tardy response to Churchill's summons. (TV: Victory of the Daleks) When the TARDIS had the opportunity to speak to the Eleventh Doctor in the body of Idris, it called itself a "Type 40" without any qualification. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) River Song defined it a "Type 40 Mark". (COMIC: Pond Life)
Almost all TARDISes were designed to blend into their surroundings by means of a mechanism usually called the "chameleon circuit", but occasionally the "camouflage unit". Some later models seemed to let the pilot choose a desired exterior, overriding what would have been "natural" for the surroundings. (TV: Time and the Rani, Time-Flight)
The Doctor's TARDIS would have had both abilities, were the chameleon circuit operational. Before he met Ian and Barbara, the First Doctor had landed on Iwa, where the TARDIS had posed as a boulder in that planet's desert. (PROSE: Frayed) On Quinnis, the First Doctor was unhappy when the TARDIS landed in a bazaar and chose to turn into a market stall, complete with a striped awning. (AUDIO: Quinnis) The Fourth Doctor showed Adric how the TARDIS could be changed to the shape of an Egyptian pyramid, implying he could override the chameleon circuit's "automatic" functionality. (TV: Logopolis) Susan mentioned the TARDIS also had previously appeared as a sedan chair and an Ionic column. (TV: An Unearthly Child)
In any case, the defining characteristic of the Doctor's TARDIS was that its chameleon circuit had broken after assuming the shape of a police box in 1963 London. (TV: The Cave of Skulls) The Eleventh Doctor sabotaged the chameleon circuit before the TARDIS left 1963 London as part of a plot to foil the Prometheans so that the blue box shape was imprinted into the race memory of humanity. (COMIC: Hunters of the Burning Stone) Not knowing this, the First Doctor and Susan expressed surprise that it had not changed form when they arrived at a new destination. (TV: An Unearthly Child)
On at least one instance it was implied that the chameleon circuit was working, but that the Doctor was fond of the Police Box shape so the TARDIS remained in that form for his happiness.
It's camouflaged. It's disguised as a police telephone box from 1963. Every time the TARDIS materialises in a new location, within the first nanosecond of landing, it analyses its surroundings, calculates a twelve-dimensional data map of everything within a thousand-mile radius and then determines which outer shell would blend in best with the environment.... and then it disguises itself as a police telephone box from 1963.
Friends and enemies could identify the TARDIS by its unvarying shape. The Daleks even used miniature copies of the TARDIS for target practice. (TV: Death to the Daleks) The Cybermen recognised it, (TV: Earthshock) as did the Black Guardian's operative known as the Shadow. (TV: The Armageddon Factor) Sarah Jane also recognised it, which led to her reunion with the Tenth Doctor. (TV: School Reunion) Donna Noble was also on the look-out for the TARDIS. (TV: Partners in Crime)
On one occasion, an actual police box — namely, the last of its kind, which was situated on the Barnet by-pass — scared a group of invading aliens away from Earth when they mistook it for the Doctor's ship. (PROSE: Useless Things) Miss Kizlet's team faced "an embarrassment" when they thought the police box in Earl's Court was the Doctor's space-time vehicle. (TV: The Bells of Saint John) Madge Arwell confused a normal police box for the TARDIS while helping the Eleventh Doctor find the TARDIS. (TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe) After accidentally aiding the Trickster by preventing her parents' deaths, Sarah Jane sought out the TARDIS to get the Doctor's help; however, as she time travelled to the 1950s, Sarah Jane mistook a regular police box for the TARDIS since they were "everywhere" at the time. (TV: The Temptation of Sarah Jane Smith)
Captain Jack Harkness was on the look-out for "a version of" the police box throughout the 20th and early 21st centuries to avoid meeting the Doctor before their initial meeting. (TV: Utopia) Members of LINDA also knew of the outer shape of the Doctor's TARDIS, as did the Abzorbaloff. (TV: Love & Monsters) The TARDIS was seen so much throughout history that, as Sarah Jane explained, you could Google "Doctor, blue box" and get results. (TV: Death of the Doctor)
Because the police box shape was relatively easily recognised, the Doctor made several attempts to change the exterior of the TARDIS. None were particularly successful. In the end, he forewent changing how the TARDIS' outer shell looked by his ninth incarnation, deciding that he liked it. When Mickey Smith questioned the wisdom of leaving the TARDIS parked in the middle of Cardiff, thinking the appearance of a police box would draw unwanted attention, the Doctor reasoned that it was not a concern - people would see a blue box in the middle of the city and walk past it, taking no further notice. (TV: Boom Town) This was most likely due to the perception filter that the TARDIS had. (TV: Everything Changes)
- These attempts are chronicled at chameleon circuit.
The exterior of the TARDIS changed shape when it entered siege mode. In this form, it took the shape of a cube etched with Gallifreyan writing with no way of getting in or out. (TV: Flatline) Making it look similar to the Pandorica. (TV: The Pandorica Opens) If the TARDIS had insufficient power, this mode could not be turned off, leaving life support to fail. (TV: Flatline)
By the Twelfth Doctor's time, the TARDIS exterior was bigger than it was when used by the First Doctor, especially the windows. The Twelfth Doctor commented to his predecessor "[w]ell it's all those years of bigger on the inside, you try sucking your tummy in that long." (TV: Twice Upon a Time)
Generally, the TARDIS had two doors along one of the craft's four sides. They could open inward and outward. (TV: Time-Flight, The Ice Warriors, The Eleventh Hour, GAME: The Doctor and the Dalek) By the time of the Tenth Doctor, the doors could be opened by the snap of the fingers. (TV: Forest of the Dead, The Eleventh Hour, Day of the Moon) The Eleventh Doctor's companion Clara Oswald also attained this ability. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
The right-hand door usually had a lock, (TV: The Sensorites, Spearhead from Space et al.) although the lock was sometimes on the left-hand door, even though normal entry was still through the right. (TV: most serials prior to The War Machines)
On the left-hand door was a panel in which was a replica of a telephone used in real police boxes to summon the police. (TV: The Empty Child, The Bells of Saint John, The Time of the Doctor) While the Second Doctor inhabited the TARDIS the emergency phone was sometimes on the right-hand panel, but by the time of his adventure on Dulkis, it had returned to the left-hand door. (TV: The Dominators) The TARDIS once communicated with Timothy Dean using its phone. (PROSE: Human Nature) Although during the Doctor's ninth incarnation this phone was (usually) non-functional, (TV: The Empty Child) by his eleventh incarnation the phone could be used to send and receive calls, and this continued into his twelfth. (TV: The Day of the Doctor, The Time of the Doctor, Time Heist) A sign on this small door offered instructions on use of the phone. (TV: Logopolis)
The Second Doctor once entered through the top of the TARDIS, by lifting a panel on which the roof lamp rested. (COMIC: Peril at 60 Fathoms) He also tried to enter through the back panels, the occasional cat flaps and once through the central beacon. It was indicated that these would usually work, but did not in this case. (PROSE: Heart of TARDIS)
On most occasions, the left-hand door was set to a fixed position. Likewise, the windows on the door were most often seen in a closed position, though the First Doctor sometimes opened them. (TV: The Dalek Invasion of Earth)
Sometimes both doors could be pushed (TV: Rose, Father's Day) or pulled open, (TV: The Runaway Bride, The Beast Below, The Christmas Invasion) but according to the TARDIS herself, the doors should not open inwards and this was the Doctor opening them wrong - she claimed that they "open out the way". (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
During the Doctor's first incarnation, a faded St John Ambulance logo could be seen on the door, even though it was sometimes barely visible under a layer of paint. Beginning during their second incarnation, it was not present. (TV: The Dominators onwards) When the TARDIS regenerated itself at the start of their eleventh incarnation, a new St John sticker appeared on the door. (TV: The Eleventh Hour)
The exact wording on the sign on the telephone door varied slightly over time — once it, and the writing otherwise on the front of the TARDIS, was changed to read BAD WOLF. (TV: Turn Left) When the TARDIS "regenerated" consequent to the Tenth Doctor's regeneration, this sign became backlit. (TV: The Eleventh Hour onwards)
By the time he was going to have the chameleon circuit repaired by the Logopolitans, the Fourth Doctor had installed a handle on the telephone panel on the left-hand door. This remained a subtle, if functional, part of the design. (TV: The Empty Child)
At some point prior to arriving to his unexpected death in San Francisco, the Seventh Doctor affixed a small handle to the right-hand door. (TV: Doctor Who) This handle persisted after the "regeneration" of the TARDIS consequent to the arrival of the Eleventh Doctor. (TV: Rose onwards)
The Eleventh Doctor somehow fixed the TARDIS doors to accommodate his robotic T-Rex companion Kevin, although it was never explained how. (COMIC: When Worlds Collide) Later, the Twelfth Doctor travelled for a time with Jata, a member of a race that resembled Terran horses, and who likewise was able to enter and exit through the TARDIS doors. (COMIC: From the Horse's Mouth)
Lock and key Edit
- Main article: TARDIS key
Entry to the Doctor's TARDIS was usually effected by inserting a key into a lock, just as would be expected with a real police box. However, the lock did not respond to police-issued keys. (TV: Black Orchid, Blink)
Susan suggested that the key forced the user to insert it precisely or the lock would self-destruct. (TV: "The Survivors") Later, the lock had a metabolism detector, preventing Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart from using the key. (TV: Spearhead from Space)
Design and features Edit
The external design of the key changed over time. It usually appeared to be an ordinary Yale lock key. (TV: Spearhead from Space, Rose, and others) However, it occasionally appeared to have a more ornate, Gallifreyan motif. (TV: Planet of the Spiders, Ghost Light, Doctor Who)
The key could be modified to track and locate the TARDIS, allowing the Doctor to find the TARDIS if it was within a hundred years of his position. (COMIC: The Forgotten) The key was known to express a link to the TARDIS by glowing or becoming hot to the touch. (TV: Father's Day, The Eleventh Hour)
At one point, the Tenth Doctor installed a system that let him lock the TARDIS remotely using a fob (as a joke, the TARDIS roof light flashed and an alarm chirp was heard, similar to that used on vehicles on Earth). He could open the door remotely. (TV: The End of Time) He also discovered, with the help of River Song after their adventure in the Library, that the door would open when he snapped his fingers, (TV: Forest of the Dead, Day of the Moon) although this function was not used consistently until his eleventh incarnation. (TV: The Eleventh Hour, Day of the Moon, The Doctor's Wife) Clara Oswald also displayed this ability twice, (TV: The Day of the Doctor, The Caretaker) using the ability to shut the doors the second time after the Twelfth Doctor did it to open the doors. (TV: The Caretaker) The Doctor has also shown the ability to summon the TARDIS with the key in their eleventh and twelfth incarnations: the Eleventh Doctor used the key to materialise the TARDIS around himself and Clara Oswald to save them from the Weeping Angels, (TV: The Time of the Doctor) while the Twelfth Doctor used the key to summon the TARDIS to save him from a free-fall, skydiving through the doors once it appeared nearby. (TV: Death in Heaven)
Interior configuration and appearance Edit
The TARDIS interior went through occasional metamorphoses, sometimes by choice, sometimes for other reasons, such as the Doctor's own regeneration. (PROSE: Invasion of the Cat-People, TV: The Eleventh Hour) The halls also changed, sometimes appearing as sterile halls with roundels, (TV: The Masque of Mandragora) a series of doors with rooms that are bigger on the inside, (COMIC: Changes) or pathways similar to caves, with lights in the walls. (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom, Cindy, Cleo and the Magic Sketchbook)
Some of these changes were physical in nature (involving secondary control rooms, etc.), but it was also possible to re-arrange the interior design of the TARDIS with ease, using the Architectural Configuration system. (TV: Logopolis, Castrovalva, AUDIO: Relative Dimensions) The Fifth Doctor called this changing "the desktop theme". (TV: Time Crash) When the "desktop theme" was changed, the control room would flash with light and the newly selected version would take its place. (TV: The Day of the Doctor) The TARDIS archived disused (and yet-to-be-used) control room configurations. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) The TARDIS could also create and modify rooms on its own accord; for example, to prevent part of the Architectural Configuration System from being stolen by shifting rooms and corridors to create a labyrinth, and to preserve passengers from threats by creating copies of the control room to house them in. (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS)
There were at least seven decks inside the TARDIS. Not knowing what some of the buttons did on the console, the Twelfth Doctor accidentally caused the waste tanks on Deck 7 to release their contents when piloting the TARDIS. Once River Song pointed this out, the Doctor winced "better avoid Deck 7 then." (TV: The Husbands of River Song)
The TARDIS interior walls generally consisted of roundels — circular or hexagonal indentations that lined the TARDIS console room's interior walls and sometimes the walls deeper in the ship's interior. Some roundels concealed TARDIS circuitry, devices, or lights. (TV: The Wheel in Space, Death to the Daleks, Logopolis, Castrovalva, Arc of Infinity, Terminus, Enlightenment,Vengeance on Varos, COMIC: Kane's Story) At least one large roundel functioned as a scanner. (TV: The Claws of Axos, The Beast Below) One roundel could display the time safe when this feature was activated, but otherwise this roundel was apparently normal. (PROSE: Imperial Moon) On the whole, though, the Doctor had little clue as to their purpose, though later incarnations (the Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Doctors) admitted to loving and missing them from the desktops of their respective TARDISes. (TV: The Day of the Doctor, Deep Breath) On one occasion, the Second Doctor removed a roundel, which allowed him to remove one of the outer windows to see outside the TARDIS. (PROSE: The Nameless City)
The TARDIS' exterior was always lighter than the "true weight" of its interior. According to the Twelfth Doctor, "If the TARDIS were to land with its true weight, it would fracture the surface of the Earth." (TV: Flatline) The TARDIS was said by Romana II to weigh fifty thousand tonnes in Alzarius' gravity. (TV: Full Circle) "[S]eventeen thousand tons of thrust" was jettisoned for the TARDIS to escape Event One. (TV: Castrovalva) One time, when the TARDIS mapped its interior dimensions onto its exterior ones — making it the same size outside as inside — it was larger than Gallifrey. (PROSE: The Ancestor Cell) It was once described by the Eleventh Doctor as being infinite, as new areas could be created and therefore add more weight. (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS) The Twelfth Doctor once adjusted the TARDIS' relative gravity so that Clara could pick it up. This decrease of weight allowed the TARDIS to be light enough that the Doctor was able to, literally, move it by hand. (TV: Flatline)
Control room Edit
- Main article: TARDIS control room
The control or console room of the Doctor's TARDIS was the space in which the operation of the craft was usually effected. It was dominated by a large, hexagonal console, typically in or near the middle of the room. The room held a scanner for viewing the outside and offered immediate access to the exterior through a set of doors. According to one source, the trip from the console room to the outside required the passenger to step through the real world interface at the heart of the outer plasmic shell. (TV: Logopolis) Many other accounts demonstrated that the doors were just doors, though the TARDIS was cocooned in a breathable atmosphere. (TV: The Runaway Bride, The Stolen Earth, The Beast Below, HOMEVID: Meanwhile in the TARDIS) On one occasion, when the TARDIS' exterior dimensions shrank, so did the door on the inside. (TV: Flatline) On another occasion, when the extrapolator shielding could easily be breached by the weaponry of the New Dalek Empire, who were "[e]xperts at fighting TARDISes", the Tenth Doctor described "that wooden door" at that point as being "just wood". (TV: Journey's End) Queen Elizabeth I once pointed out that while the Tenth Doctor's TARDIS was bigger on the inside, the door wasn't, and her head was nearly taken off when the Doctor rode out of the TARDIS with Elizabeth on a Zygon which took on the body-print of a horse. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
There were many variants of the Doctor's control room. Indeed the Doctor's TARDIS had more than one control room. The TARDIS itself said it had over 30 different versions in storage; being a different kind of temporal being, it could "archive something that hasn't happened." Idris telepathically told Rory how to go to one of the old console rooms, which, in this case, was the Tenth Doctor's console room. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
Other rooms Edit
Some of the companions shared accommodations. (TV: The Edge of Destruction, The Doctor's Wife) Many companions had their own rooms in the TARDIS, decorated to their tastes. (TV: Meglos, Earthshock) Some of the companions were given previously used rooms; in the case of Turlough, it is most likely because Tegan didn't know where to find other rooms. (TV: Terminus) Romana's room was jettisoned after she left the TARDIS. (TV: Logopolis) According to one account, the Doctor provided a room for each companion and stored it in a holding ring even after they departed from him. At some point, the Eighth Doctor deleted every room but one. (AUDIO: Relative Dimensions)
All bedrooms were deleted by House when it possessed the TARDIS. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) Amy and Rory's original quarters had a bunk bed, much to their consternation. Nevertheless, the couple quickly conceived River Song despite the less than optimal marital accommodations. They secured a proper bed after escaping from House when the Doctor agreed to give them one when reassigning them to a new room. (TV: The Doctor's Wife, A Good Man Goes to War) Clara also had a bedroom, which she used if she needed sleep before heading back home to resume her job as nanny to the Maitland children. (HOMEVID: Clara and the TARDIS)
The Doctor was asked once if he had a room, but never answered. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) It's implied the Doctor rarely used a bed to sleep, (TV: Death in Heaven, Deep Breath) to the point he forgot what the point of the room was. (TV: Deep Breath) The Doctor didn't sleep as much as humans, (COMIC: Four Doctors; TV. Good Night, Bad Night, Deep Breath) but preferred to sleep when alone. (TV: Sleep No More) One of the few companions to ever see a bedroom used by the Doctor was Rose-the-cat, who would often sleep near his feet. (COMIC: A Rose by Any Other Name)
There was a library in the TARDIS. (PROSE: War of the Daleks, All-Consuming Fire, The Dimension Riders, AUDIO: The Witch from the Well) Its books included Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, (PROSE: The Wheel of Ice) Jane's Spaceships, (PROSE: War of the Daleks) Every Gallifreyan Child's Pop-Up Book of Nasty Creatures From Other Dimensions, (PROSE: All-Consuming Fire) The Time Machine by H. G. Wells, (TV: Doctor Who) Robinson Crusoe, (PROSE: Heart of TARDIS) The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie (signed first printing, with last page missing), War and Peace, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The I-Spy Book of British Birds, (AUDIO: Storm Warning), Can you forgive her?, the James Bond novel You Only Live Twice, (AUDIO: Zagreus), A History of the Varaxil Hegemony, (AUDIO: The Witch from the Well) the Encyclopedia Gallifreya, The History of the Time War, (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS) Wisden, A Brief History of Time, (PROSE: Fear of the Dark) Ludowig's Histories of the Dalek Imperium, and the only signed copy of The Quarry in the universe. (PROSE: Keeping up with the Joneses) The Doctor also possessed a copy of Christie's Death in the Clouds published in the year 5 billion (though this was kept in a trunk, stored under the grates of the control room, and at least not originally in the Library), (TV: The Unicorn and the Wasp) a complete set of all 11 Harry Potter novels (PROSE: The Gallifrey Chronicles) and a book entitled Advanced Quantum Mechanics that had an image of the TARDIS in its police-box camouflage on the dust jacket. (TV: The Day of the Doctor) His library also had books by Capek and Capote. (PROSE: The Blood Cell)
During the time of the Tenth Doctor, there was a specific desk that, no matter where it was moved, always got rained on by a cloud layer in the upper stacks. The Doctor placed a saucepan on the desk to catch the water and keep psychic paper from mouldering because it produced psychic mould that would eventually turn into psychic mushrooms. (PROSE: Keeping up with the Joneses) By the time the Eleventh Doctor was recovering from regeneration after-effects, the pool fell into the library after a crash-landing, but was later removed when the TARDIS had finished regenerating itself. (TV: The Eleventh Hour) Clara Oswald also hid in the library when she was running from time zombies. (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS)
The console room had a library at the end of the Seventh Doctor's life and the start of the Eighth Doctor's. (TV: Doctor Who) The Twelfth Doctor showed similar taste, refurbishing his console room with book shelves. He often took out a book relevant to a situation. (TV: Deep Breath, Robot of Sherwood, Listen, etc)
- Main article: TARDIS wardrobe
Some of the clothing in the wardrobe was picked up during travels (TV: Spearhead from Space, Doctor Who, The Fires of Pompeii, The Eleventh Hour, Deep Breath) or left by ex-companions. (TV: Pyramids of Mars, Army of Ghosts, Partners in Crime, Space) It contained clothing from various times and environments, to suit where and when the TARDIS' occupant(s) found themselves. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang, The Mark of the Rani, Ghost Light, The Curse of Fenric, The Unquiet Dead, Human Nature, Planet of the Ood, The Unicorn and the Wasp, The Power of Three, The Great Detective, etc.) The Tenth Doctor explained to Gabby Gonzalez that the TARDIS shopped on her own by landing in stores after hours, collecting clothes to make copies of, and returning the originals to avoid theft. (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom) These proved useful on numerous occasions for the Doctor's companions, many of whom left on their travels without bringing many clothes of their own. (TV: The Twin Dilemma, The Greatest Show in the Galaxy, Victory of the Daleks) The Doctor has often availed himself of its selection when attempting to define a style for himself, post-regeneration; (TV: Robot, The Twin Dilemma, Time and the Rani, The Christmas Invasion) and possibly Romana as well. (TV: Destiny of the Daleks) The Fifth Doctor, however, discovered his wardrobe in an unidentified anteroom. (TV: Castrovalva)
During Ace's time in the TARDIS it was apparently right next to the control room. (TV: The Greatest Show in the Galaxy) The War Doctor once, having forgotten where the wardrobe was located, ended up giving incorrect directions. (PROSE: Engines of War) When the Ninth Doctor was in Cardiff on 24 December 1869, he gave incredibly long directions to Rose Tyler to get to the wardrobe; her being able to remember them was nothing short of a miracle. (TV: The Unquiet Dead) When the Tenth Doctor was travelling with Gabby, the wardrobe was located next to the laundry room. While walking to the laundry room, Gabby asked if the boot cupboard was the wardrobe, to which the Doctor explained that the "wardrobe's next door along -- I think. Might've moved it." (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom) By the time of the Eleventh Doctor's date with River Song following the TARDIS' repair, it had changed location. The directions that he gave River were considerably shorter. (TV: The Eleventh Hour; HOMEVID: First Night) The Twelfth Doctor, having landed in 1814 at the height of the last Frost Fair, gave directions similar to the ones his ninth incarnation gave to Rose, this time to his companion Bill Potts. (TV: Thin Ice)
In the Eleventh Doctor's second console room, he gained easy access to the wardrobe through a chest on the sub level. (TV: The Bells of Saint John) The Doctor once changed out of his soaked outfit and into a fresh set of clothes incredibly fast, and when asked by Clara how he changed so quickly, he replied "wibbly-wobbly wardrobe". (PROSE: Shroud of Sorrow) By the time of the Twelfth Doctor, however, entry to the wardrobe required travelling further into the ship. (TV: Thin Ice)
Cloister bell/room Edit
- Main article: Cloister Room
The Cloister Room was related to the Cloister Bell, which sounded when disaster was imminent. The room appeared to be ancient with benches on the sides of the room and plants growing on the crumbling pillars. The Fourth Doctor visited this room with Adric shortly before his regeneration. (TV: Logopolis)
The Tenth Doctor later implied that the room had reverted back to a garden state. He explained to Gabby that the dirt molecules in their clothes would be deposited as fertiliser for "the cloisters" by the Laundro De-mat. (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom)
Holding ring Edit
- Main article: TARDIS holding ring
The holding ring was a storage area of the TARDIS which let the Doctor preserve certain rooms. When Lucie, Susan and Alex investigated it, the ring contained the rooms of many of his former companions, preserved as they had been the last time the companions were in the TARDIS. The rooms were saved in chronological order, suggesting that Susan was indeed the Doctor's first companion. Susan later teased her grandfather, calling his habit of saving rooms overly sentimental. He suggested that the ring was one of the few ways his time-travelling life allowed him to put down roots. After Susan, Alex and Lucie departed the TARDIS for new adventures on Earth, the Doctor reconsidered the wisdom of keeping so many rooms in stasis. Insisting to himself he needed to look towards the future, he deleted all the rooms on the holding ring — "except that one". (AUDIO: Relative Dimensions) The Doctor's penchant for such archiving recalls the TARDIS's policy of archiving past and future console rooms, though whether out of nostalgia or, as it states, "for neatness" is unclear. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
Swimming pool Edit
- Main article: TARDIS swimming pool
The TARDIS had a swimming pool. It was used by Leela and Borusa to hide from the Sontarans. Both the Fourth Doctor and Leela referred to this room as a "bathroom", and the Doctor described what K9 called "[being] totally immersed in H2O" in this room as a "fine time to take a bath". (TV: The Invasion of Time) Peri froze the water with liquid nitrogen to turn it into an ice skating rink. (AUDIO: The Roof of the World) It was later jettisoned due to leakage, which Mel found bothersome. (TV: Paradise Towers)
It was replaced some time later. (GAME: Destiny of the Doctors) After the TARDIS' crash following the Doctor's twelfth regeneration, the pool's water — or perhaps the pool itself — fell into the library. After the TARDIS had fixed itself, the swimming pool was restored but the Doctor did not know where it was; he stated that the Wardrobe contained "clothes, and, possibly, a swimming pool". (TV: The Eleventh Hour) He eventually found it, and offered to go and swim a few laps to give Amy and Rory some privacy. (TV: Amy's Choice) Later, to save River Song after she had leapt off a New York skyscraper, the Doctor had Amy and Rory open all the doors leading to the pool to cushion River's landing in the sideways TARDIS. (TV: Day of the Moon) The Doctor said he got rid of it to "give the TARDIS a bit of welly" when going outside the universe. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) However, after the TARDIS changed once again, (TV: The Snowmen) the swimming pool was "rebuilt"' and Clara Oswald walked by and saw it when she was trapped in the TARDIS after a salvage team damaged the ship. (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS)
Zero Room Edit
- Main article: Zero Room
The Zero Room was unaffected by the outside world and smelled of roses for some reason unknown even to the Doctor. It was a refuge for Time Lords undergoing regenerations in danger of failing. It was accidentally jettisoned along with other rooms in the TARDIS to escape from Event One. (TV: Castrovalva) A new one was eventually built. (AUDIO: Renaissance of the Daleks) The Sixth Doctor placed Charley Pollard in it in order to cure her from the virus she was infected with during their visit to the Amethyst Viral Containment Station. (AUDIO: Patient Zero) The Seventh Doctor was able to purge the TARDIS of a demonic infection by subtly linking the tertiary console to the Zero Room, cutting the console off from the rest of the ship so that the Doctor could take action against the infection without it being aware of his actions. (PROSE: Deceit) The War Doctor allowed Karlax to finish regenerating from exposure to the vacuum of space in it. (PROSE: Engines of War) When the TARDIS was hijacked by the Celestial Toymaker, who wished to use the TARDIS as his new playroom, the Twelfth Doctor trapped him in the Zero Room and ejected it from the TARDIS, making it the Celestial Toymaker's new playroom. (COMIC: Relative Dimensions)
- Main article: TARDIS kitchen
A food machine area was originally near (but not in) the console room. (TV: The Edge of Destruction and others) The food machine was apparently reinstalled at some point, since it was among the components Thomas Brewster sold to the crew of the Gamma while in possession of the Fifth Doctor's TARDIS. (AUDIO: Time Reef) Later, the TARDIS had a full kitchen (AUDIO: Relative Dimensions, COMIC: Sticks & Stones) which included a refrigerator. (COMIC: The Whispering Gallery) The Eleventh Doctor pointed out the location of the kitchen to Captain Avery after letting him into the TARDIS. (TV: The Curse of the Black Spot) Evidently this amenity was not a top priority for visitors as the Doctor noted that Clara's early inquiry about whether the TARDIS had a kitchen was "(a) first". (TV: The Snowmen) According to Romana, the Fourth Doctor rarely used the kitchen. (PROSE: Shada)
Laundry room Edit
Mel said that the Doctor used the TARDIS laundromat to wash his clothes. (AUDIO: The One Doctor) Ba's ship once became trapped in the TARDIS laundry room for four weeks. (PROSE: A Life in the Day) When the Eighth Doctor's coat was damaged by Tractites the TARDIS laundry machine repaired it. (PROSE: Seeing I) The Tenth Doctor took Gabby to the TARDIS laundry room after their trip to Quomippins, calling it the "Landro-Demat". He explained that the washing machine worked by dematerialising and analysing the clothes and then separating out the dirt and putting everything back together which meant nothing ever came out damaged. It also had an option that enabled the user to scent their clothes with any of thousands of scents, but it did have a glitch that caused the clothes to become rumpled. After accidentally putting his sonic through the wash, it caused a mud monster avatar to develop from their dirty clothes and at the end of the cycle, the Doctor's suit ended up with Gabby's flower print and her shirt ended up with stripes. (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom)
Flora and fauna Edit
The Doctor had a botanical house which contained a man-eating plant. This plant ate a Sontaran. (TV: The Invasion of Time) There was also several miles of heathland where the Ecidien Cerebus Bird lived. (AUDIO: The Pursuit of History)
There was a large garden designed by the Doctor using block-transfer computation that needed to be tended — it contained bougainvillea, Draconian myrtle hedges and Vendican bladder-pods, plus a stream and set of swings. The Eighth Doctor said he once allowed an entire incarnation to pass without maintaining it. (AUDIO: Scaredy Cat) During the time when Jason and Dr. Who controlled the TARDIS, Jason almost drowned Wolsey in the garden's pond. (PROSE: Head Games)
By the time of the Eighth Doctor, the TARDIS had a butterfly room. (PROSE: Vampire Science) It was a huge room with a hillside and a meadow in it, it housed "about a billion butterflies". The Doctor often sat in a wicker chair at the top of the hill. After spending three years in Oliver Bainbridge Functional Stabilisation Centre he recuperated in the butterfly room. (PROSE: Seeing I)
During the time that the Tenth Doctor travelled alone after the loss of Donna Noble, the TARDIS spontaneously generated a park where he spent two weeks growing oak trees. After using the artificial sun to make the branches spell the name "Rose", the Doctor decided it was time to move on from the park. (PROSE: Keeping up with the Joneses)
During an attack from a temporal mine, the TARDIS shared its pain with the Tenth Doctor by vaporising the aquarium which caused him to feel the dead fish in his gall bladder. Christina hoped that the Doctor would get his aquarium back. (PROSE: Keeping up with the Joneses) Later, the Eleventh Doctor searched for the aquarium but gave up on finding it after opening the doors to several other rooms. (PROSE: Shroud of Sorrow)
- Main article: TARDIS zoo
As early as the Sixth Doctor, there was a zoo of endangered animals, a coffee machine, and a jungle-like room. (COMIC: Changes) The zoo also existed during the Seventh Doctor's lifetime (PROSE: Echo) and was still in operation as recently as the Tenth Doctor's life. (PROSE: The Last Dodo) It is unclear whether the Doctor has any direct involvement in maintaining the zoo, or if this is handled completely by the TARDIS herself.
The Fifth Doctor showed the TARDIS to Erimem shortly after she joined the TARDIS. It contained a full sized cricket pitch (for the Doctor to keep cucumber sandwiches in), several fields, several gardens, a rain forest area, various control relays, "the small library", a storeroom full of terracotta Chinese soldiers, and a Dimensional Induction Chamber. (AUDIO: No Place Like Home) The Eighth Doctor had a cupboard full of spare sonic screwdrivers in a workshop, which was situated in Corridor 3, the fourth door along. (AUDIO: The Silver Turk) By the time of the Doctor's tenth incarnation, several rooms from years (and centuries) past still existed deep within the TARDIS, including the Cloister Room and a bedroom that had once been used by Adric. (COMIC: Tesseract) Although she did not live full-time aboard the TARDIS, (TV: Nightmare in Silver, et al.) on occasion Clara slept in a spare bedroom (in which she could turn on the lights by voice control), with a wall design similar to the Fifth Doctor's TARDIS and she also passed through a smaller version of the library, a tool shed, an Italian bistro and finally a hallway which appeared to be a time loop. (COMIC: Sky Jacks) At one point, however, the TARDIS, apparently in a mischievous mood, made it impossible for Clara to find her way back to the bedroom, even causing her to meet future versions of herself. (HOMEVID: Clara and the TARDIS)
The TARDIS at one point also had extensive utility areas and corridors which, along with the swimming pool area, became battlegrounds during a Sontaran invasion of the TARDIS. (TV: The Invasion of Time) He had it up though at least his seventh incarnation. (GAME: Destiny of the Doctors) The Doctor was under the impression it had been jettisoned until he stumbled across it in his tenth incarnation. (COMIC: Tesseract)
Other rooms included the power room, (TV: The Mind Robber), the shell room, (PROSE: The Little Things) the star chamber, containing a small galaxy (AUDIO: Persuasion) and an armoury. (COMIC: Ice Cap Terror) The Twelfth Doctor had a room full of mentions and pictures of Ashildr's time as an immortal. He believed Clara didn't know about it. (TV: Face the Raven)
The architectural reconfiguration system was housed in a separate room. The TARDIS made the door disappear in an attempt to stop Gregor Van Baalen from removing one of its components. (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS)
There were at least fourteen bathrooms, one of which had had a leaky tap for three centuries. Because he had misplaced his washers, the Doctor kept it from flooding the TARDIS by sealing it in a time loop that made the same drop of water leak out over and over again. (PROSE: The Well-Mannered War) Another contained a claw-foot bathtub, approximately the size of an Olympic pool. (PROSE: Shada)
There was a sauna lined with wooden panels and benches. (PROSE: Shroud of Sorrow) It also had a fully-stocked spa next to the laundry room, which had scented candles, a bathtub and a radio; possibly the Doctor kept a spare outfit or two in this room. (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom)
There was a large salon which the Fourth Doctor referred to as a "boot cupboard", much to Sarah Jane Smith's surprise. When Sarah Jane said it was a bit too big to be a boot cupboard he replied, "I've seen bigger boot cupboards." (TV: The Masque of Mandragora) The Tenth Doctor and Gabby passed the boot cupboard on their way to the laundry room. At the time it was a literal shelf built into the coral walls and overflowed with boots. (COMIC: Laundro-Room of Doom)
There was a garage. The Tenth Doctor kept a Vespa motor scooter in storage within the TARDIS. (TV: The Idiot's Lantern) The Sixth Doctor once rented a Volkswagen and stored it in the TARDIS as well. (PROSE: Instruments of Darkness) The Eleventh Doctor had an anti-gravity scooter which he took out of the TARDIS. (TV: The Bells of Saint John) Clara Oswald once parked a motorcycle in the console room; it was subsequently removed from the room. (TV: The Day of the Doctor) The Doctor's beloved old car, Bessie, was also kept around as well. (COMIC: What he Wants...)
It had a sickbay. (TV: Cold Blood; AUDIO: The Blood Furnace) The Seventh Doctor treated Melanie Bush in the sickbay after she was injured by an explosion in the console room. (AUDIO: The Blood Furnace) In the Eleventh Doctor's TARDIS, this was up the stairs, to the left, then left again. It apparently had medical supplies to heal Mo from live vivisection. (TV: Cold Blood)
It had a drawing room, as well, which the Eleventh Doctor claimed to be his "private study". Inside it were mementos of his many incarnations' travels. (GAME: TARDIS) The items inside it varied. (GAME: The Gunpowder Plot) It's possible the Doctor liked to sleep here. (COMIC: Four Doctors)
When the Eleventh Doctor was trying to get out of his universe, he said he was deleting the scullery room and squash court seven to give the TARDIS an extra boost. This indicated he had at least six other squash courts. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
There were several storerooms in the TARDIS: Storeroom 89 was filled with diamonds, Storeroom 90 was where the Doctor kept all of his old clothes, and Storeroom 104 was where thousands of sacks were kept. (PROSE: Keeping up with the Joneses) The Fourth Doctor had an entire room filled with scarves to choose from, according to River's diary. (GAME: The Eternity Clock)
There was what appeared to be a cricket club and pitch deep within the bowels of the TARDIS. It was here that the freshly regenerated Fifth Doctor chose his outfit. (TV: Castrovalva) The Doctor and Nyssa found a wine cellar here whilst looking for the ancillary power cell. (AUDIO: The Haunting of Thomas Brewster)
Specific control systems Edit
The Fourth Doctor claimed that the TARDIS controls were isomorphic, though this appeared to have been a ruse for the benefit of Sutekh the Destroyer. (TV: Pyramids of Mars) Indeed, various companions were able to operate the TARDIS and even fly it. (TV: Castrovalva, Four to Doomsday, The Visitation, The Five Doctors, The Parting of the Ways, The Sontaran Stratagem, Journey's End, The Time of Angels, The Lodger, AUDIO: You Are the Doctor and Other Stories) The Time Lords were also able to pilot the TARDIS by remote control, (TV: Colony in Space) usually, as the Fourth Doctor once bitterly noted, so he might take care of "some dirty work they don't want to get their lily-white hands on". (TV: The Brain of Morbius)
The Second Doctor once used a portable Stattenheim remote control to summon his TARDIS. (TV: The Two Doctors) The TARDIS was also vulnerable to diversion or relocation by the Guardians, Eternals, and other immensely powerful beings such as the Keeper of Traken (TV: The Ribos Operation, Enlightenment, The Keeper of Traken) and the Silence. (TV: The Big Bang)
The Fourth Doctor installed a randomiser in the navigational sub-systems to prevent the Black Guardian from finding him. It was eventually removed, and ended up being left behind on Argolis. (TV: The Armageddon Factor, The Leisure Hive)
The Eleventh Doctor's console Edit
The systems of the Eleventh Doctor's console room prior to his retirement above Victorian London (TV: The Snowmen) were fairly well-understood. According to one account, each of the six panels controlled discrete functions.
The mechanical panel contained the engine release lever, door release lever, gyroscopic stabiliser, locking down mechanism (described as a physical handbrake) and the TARDIS display dials. The helm panel contained the eyepiece (an alternative to visual scanners), the time rotor handbrake and the space/time throttle. The navigation panel contained a time and space forward/back control, directional pointer, atom accelerator (the spinning, spiky ball) and the spatial location input (a computer keyboard). The diagnostic panel contained the inertial dampers, the cooling systems (gauges), a bunsen burner and a microphone/water dispenser. The communications panel contained an analogue telephone, digital com, voice recorder, analogue radio waves detector/monitor/changer and a scanner/typewriter. The fabrication panel contained the materialise/dematerialise function, harmonic generator, time altimeter, a fabrication dispenser (which was described as being able to produce sonic screwdrivers and other technology — which eventually housed the laser screwdriver) and a Heisenberg focusing device which was used to break Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle. This device was called a zigzag plotter. (GAME: TARDIS)
Temporal grace Edit
On more than one occasion, the Doctor indicated that the interior of the TARDIS existed in a state of "temporal grace", meaning that weapons didn't function inside the TARDIS. (TV: The Hand of Fear, Time-Flight) However, the system seemed to be malfunctioning by the time the Fifth Doctor was piloting the vessel. (TV: The Visitation, Earthshock, Arc of Infinity) During his travels with Lucie Miller, the Eighth Doctor explained that the temporal grace system had not worked in years. (AUDIO: Human Resources) The Sixth Doctor was able to use a Cyberman's gun inside it. (TV: Attack of the Cybermen) Later, Jack Harkness discharged an energy weapon in the Ninth Doctor's TARDIS and the Tenth Doctor and Martha had to dodge energy bolts fired into the TARDIS. (TV: The Parting of the Ways, Human Nature) The Eleventh Doctor indicated that by the time he had told Mels about temporal grace, it had actually been "a clever lie" to deter her from firing her gun inside the TARDIS. She then proceeded to fire a bullet into the TARDIS console releasing deadly gases into the control room. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler) Later, the Twelfth Doctor wouldn't try lying to Journey Blue, who was aiming a gun at him; however, he was able to convince her to politely ask for a lift. (TV: Into the Dalek)
Emergency systems Edit
The Doctor's TARDIS contained emergency systems such as the Jade Pagoda, a 'life boat' of some description, which could in theory be piloted. (PROSE: Iceberg) In emergencies it would lock onto the nearest planet with a breathable atmosphere and bearable climate. (PROSE: Sanctuary)
The TARDIS also had a system which, when the TARDIS was adrift in space and unmanned, would automatically lock onto the nearest centre of gravity. (TV: Voyage of the Damned) This ability either didn't always exist, or didn't always function, as when it fell out of Ambassador Zixlyr's spaceship, the TARDIS remained indefinitely adrift in orbit around Peladon until it was boarded again. (AUDIO: The Bride of Peladon) There were also emergency settings established by the Doctor. Emergency Program One was a way to rescue his companions (but not the Doctor himself) if the Doctor's death seemed inevitable, transporting the TARDIS (with the companion inside) back to the companion's respective time and home. (TV: Bad Wolf, Silence in the Library) Another could reunite the TARDIS with the Doctor if they were separated; initially it required someone to enter the TARDIS and insert an 'authorised command disk' to activate it. (TV: Blink) However, the Doctor explained that the occupants would have to hold on to the console to avoid being left behind. (TV: Kill the Moon) After this, it seemed to be fully installed and integrated into the ship's systems; the TARDIS automatically commenced the emergency program without external aid in various attempts to reach the Doctor, who had been trapped in a time-loop. (TV: The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith)
The TARDIS was capable of extensive self-repair after suffering a hull breach. (TV: Voyage of the Damned) After more extensive damage, a complete rebuilding could take place, changing the interior and exterior appearances. (TV: The Eleventh Hour)
The TARDIS had an alarm system known as the cloister bell that activated in dire circumstances. (TV: Logopolis, Castrovalva, Doctor Who, The Sound of Drums, Turn Left, The Waters of Mars, The End of Time, Hide, Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS)
Another emergency program activated when the TARDIS exploded. This particular program locked the control room in a time loop to protect any occupant. (TV: The Big Bang) There was also a safety mechanism for when TARDIS rooms were deleted, automatically relocating any living beings in the deleted room, depositing them in the control room; (TV: The Doctor's Wife) although the Fifth Doctor implied this automatic function would become inoperative whenever the TARDIS was on manual, stating: "Oh yes, that's the trouble with Manual Over-ride." (TV: Castrovalva)
Defensive systems Edit
Beyond the chameleon circuit, the TARDIS could teleport itself a short distance away from its current location if it was being attacked, rematerialising after the attacker had gone. This was called the Hostile Action Displacement System (HADS) by the Second (TV: The Krotons) and Eleventh Doctor. (TV: Cold War) A different HADS existed as well, a "Dispersal" action that scattered the atoms of the TARDIS to keep it from being destroyed; it could be reconstructed by signalling it with a sonic device. (TV: The Witch's Familiar)
A related system was meant to protect the TARDIS from landing in the path of oncoming vehicles, by preventing it from landing on, for example, train tracks. This feature failed when the TARDIS landed on train tracks in Vichy France. The Second Doctor, Ben, Jamie and Polly had to physically push the TARDIS out of the railway bed before the next train came down the tracks. (AUDIO: Resistance)
The TARDIS was at one point given a defensive shield utilising a Tribophysical waveform macro-kinetic extrapolator. (TV: The Parting of the Ways) Prior to this, it also had its own shielding. (TV: The Pirate Planet) The extrapolator also pulled the TARDIS a short distance away from the Empress of the Racnoss when she pulled her from the beginning of Earth to 2007. (TV: The Runaway Bride)
The Twelfth Doctor activated what was called "siege mode" in order for the TARDIS to survive being run over by a train. It prevented anyone from entering and exiting the TARDIS. It also required energy to exit siege mode, which, at the time, the TARDIS did not have. It was activated by pulling a lever on the underside of the console. (TV: Flatline)
Offensive systems Edit
The TARDIS later gained some offensive systems of sort; this may have been caused by its development into the Edifice. This weapon allowed the Edifice/the Doctor's TARDIS to destroy Gallifrey, although this was only accomplished by channelling all of the Edifice's energy into the weapons. (PROSE: The Ancestor Cell)
Intuition circuits Edit
Following his encounter with the Monk in 1066, the First Doctor installed a device in the TARDIS that could detect disturbances in history. (PROSE: The Schoolboy's Story) Using a holographic representation of the universe connected to its neural net, the TARDIS was effectively able to make hunches, guesses on where it needed to be. Though the TARDIS was able to guess where it was needed, it was unable to inform the Doctor of what he needed to do once he got there. (PROSE: ...And Eternity in an Hour)
The Fifth Doctor asked the TARDIS to scan the universe for any references to Richter's Syndrome, having it "keep its ears open." (AUDIO: The Whispering Forest) Towards the end of the Seventh Doctor's life, the TARDIS was able to tap into galactic communication networks and eavesdrop on the universe, which is how he learned of the Persuasion machine. (AUDIO: Persuasion)
When the TARDIS matrix briefly inhabited a humanoid body, it was able to finally inform the Doctor that its apparent unreliability was due to this drive to take the Doctor "where (he) needed to go" rather than where he wanted to go. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) When the Doctor refused to regenerate, the TARDIS took the Time Lord to meet his original incarnation. (TV: The Doctor Falls)
Invisibility option Edit
The TARDIS had the ability to become invisible. It happened during the time of the Second Doctor when a Cyberman missile struck the TARDIS after it had materialised near the dark side of the Moon. The missile damaged the ship's visual stabiliser, causing it to become invisible when it materialised again on Earth. The Doctor fixed the offending circuit. (TV: The Invasion)
The Eleventh Doctor landed the TARDIS invisibly in the Oval Office in 1969. President Richard Nixon was present when the TARDIS landed and he remained unaware of it until it became visible. The Doctor said he rarely used this feature because it drained an enormous amount of the TARDIS' power. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut) He also later used invisibility to hide his TARDIS in Area 51. (TV: Day of the Moon)
Other systems Edit
The TARDIS could extend an oxygen bubble, or air shell, for a distance beyond its doors, allowing them to be opened while in space, (TV: The Runaway Bride, The Doctor's Wife) and even allowing individuals to survive outside the TARDIS. (TV: The Horns of Nimon, The Beast Below, The Time of Angels, Oxygen, GAME: TARDIS) This could be used to create an air corridor, which the Eleventh Doctor once used to rescue River Song from the Byzantium. (TV: The Time of Angels) At one point, the bubble even allowed the Eleventh Doctor and Rory Williams to camp outdoors on Earth's Moon, although the Doctor indicated that the bubble only had a finite amount of oxygen. (COMIC: The Doctor and the Nurse) The system also worked, to a limited degree, underwater. (PROSE: Dark Horizons, GAME: Shadows of the Vashta Nerada) On at least one occasion, during which Salamander attempted to launch the TARDIS with the doors open, the TARDIS did not protect the console room from the effects of the vortex. (TV: The Enemy of the World)
The TARDIS appeared to be able to lock onto the presence of other Time Lords, particularly members of the Doctor's family, even when doing so would create a temporal paradox. (TV: The Doctor's Daughter)
The Doctor made modifications and additions from time to time. At one point, the TARDIS was equipped to write computer files to standard Earth CD-ROMs. (TV: World War Three) The Tenth Doctor modified the control console to accept DVDs to allow Sally Sparrow to use a specialised control disc to activate the TARDIS. (TV: Blink)
The TARDIS possessed translation circuits which allowed the Doctor and others to understand a wide variety of languages. (TV: The End of the World, The Christmas Invasion, The Fires of Pompeii, Cold War)
It had brakes, which, according to River Song, were always on, which was why the TARDIS landed with a characteristic wheezing noise. When she landed the TARDIS without the brakes on, it landed without any sound. (TV: The Time of Angels, COMIC: The One) The Doctor displayed the ability to do this himself when landing in President Nixon's office in 1969, but chose to keep the sound even after he became aware of how to stop it. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut) The TARDIS itself, however, when given the unique opportunity to converse with the Doctor directly, made no apparent comment regarding this, choosing instead to complain about the Doctor opening its doors improperly. Indeed, it uttered the "brakes on" sound by way of identifying itself to the Doctor. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) While conversing with the War Doctor, the Moment noted this sound saying that it and the fact that it heralded the appearance of the TARDIS and the Doctor brought hope to anyone who heard it, no matter how lost. The War Doctor agreed, saying that he liked to think it did, not getting that she was referring to him since the Tenth and Eleventh Doctor were about to materialise their TARDISes when he had no hope left. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
The TARDIS had "telepathic circuits" that could transmit messages to individuals through their thoughts. (TV: The Edge of Destruction, Frontier in Space, Planet of the Daleks, The Doctor's Wife) The telepathic circuits could also be linked to an individual, allowing them to fly the TARDIS using their thoughts and memories. (TV: Listen, Dark Water) They could also be used to gather space-time coordinates. (TV: The Name of the Doctor)
The TARDIS had a voice interface which the Doctor could communicate with. It could assume the form of a known individual. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler) The interface could also be projected outside the ship and is known to have interacted with at least one companion. (TV: Hide)
The TARDIS had an extractor fan. This was used to get rid of gases in the control room. It could be activated by voice command or from the console. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler, The Angels Take Manhattan, Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS)
The TARDIS had an automatic oxygen supply. However, the Third Doctor kept an emergency oxygen supply in a set of three tanks which he kept in a box in the event the TARDIS exhausted its own air reserves. Unfortunately, some of the tanks were faulty and depleted rather quickly. (TV: Planet of the Daleks)
As the TARDIS was a Type 40, it had a control room for the technology of the Dimensioneers of Gallifrey which allowed access and manipulations of other dimensions. The Master took advantage of this in one of this schemes. (AUDIO: Dominion)
In the first time, the First Doctor showed to be not fully aware of the conscience of his vessel, until its first attempt to communicate through faulties.[statement unclear] (TV: The Edge of Destruction) Indeed, despite being a machine, the TARDIS was sentient and developed a personality. It was called "sentimental" by the Eighth Doctor (TV: Doctor Who) and "stupid" by K9 Mark I. (TV: The Invasion of Time) Though intelligent, it was usually unable to communicate in words with the Doctor. (TV: The Edge of Destruction, The Runaway Bride) Even though the TARDIS did not always take the Doctor where he wanted to go, it always took him where he needed to be. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) The Sixth Doctor considered "her" to be one of his most trusted companions. (GAME: Destiny of the Doctors)
The TARDIS had varying opinions of the Doctor's companions. It considered most of them to be strays and usually couldn't even remember their names, calling Amy Pond "the orangey girl" and Rory Williams "the pretty one". (TV: The Doctor's Wife) The only companion it showed a particular liking to was River Song, although this was mainly because the TARDIS was, in a way, River's second mother since it had given her Time Lord DNA when River was conceived inside it. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler) The TARDIS was prejudiced, liking River because it considered her to be its "child" but also showing dislike for "impossible" companions, notably Jack Harkness and Clara Oswald, and it went to the end of the universe in an attempt to shake off Jack (TV: Utopia) and refused to open for Clara. (TV: The Rings of Akhaten, Hide) The TARDIS had a tendency to be rather petty and spiteful to people it disliked and seemed to enjoy annoying Clara simply because Clara was impossible. The Doctor said the TARDIS was like a cat and was slow to trust. Clara once described the TARDIS as a "grumpy old cow". (TV: Hide) However, later on, Clara was able to open the TARDIS doors with a snap of her fingers. (TV: The Day of the Doctor, The Caretaker) The TARDIS even extended its shielding around Clara to protect her through the Time Vortex when she hung onto the outside of the ship even though it meant it would take the TARDIS three hundred years to return to the Doctor. (TV: The Time of the Doctor)
When the Doctor's history was changed so his third incarnation regenerated ahead of schedule, the TARDIS sensed he had been infected with the Faction Paradox biodata virus, which threatened to turn him into a member of the Faction. The TARDIS took the infection into itself, holding itself together even after being nearly torn apart in a dimensional anomaly. Had it not, the Doctor would likely have become corrupted by the Faction. (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon) When the Tenth Doctor was attacked by Es'Cartrss, the TARDIS tried to help him in the Matrix, taking the forms of his companions and helping him regain his memories; after succeeding, it indulged the Doctor by taking the form of Susan Foreman for a while, allowing the Tenth Doctor an ersatz reunion with his granddaughter. (COMIC: The Forgotten)
While possessed by the Zagreus entity, the TARDIS used an avatar appearance of the Brigadier to interact with the Eighth Doctor, Charley Pollard and Rassilon. Similarly to the Doctor during this period, the TARDIS portrayed a twisted and evil personality, going as far as torturing the Doctor and shooting former companion Leela. It showed hatred towards the Doctor's companions, specially envying his love for Charley. However, her "good side" still tried to help the Doctor, by creating ways to stop the Anti-time infection. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
The Doctor responded to the TARDIS' personality by showing it great tenderness. The Fourth Doctor referred to it as his "dear old thing" on more than one occasion. (TV: The Deadly Assassin, The Robots of Death) The Eleventh Doctor was overtly demonstrative towards it, calling it both "dear" and "you sexy thing" shortly after its own regeneration. (TV: The Eleventh Hour) In many of their incarnations, the Doctor anthropomorphised it by referring to the TARDIS as "she" or "her" (common practice on Earth when referring to vessels). Some accounts suggest that the consciousness at the heart of the TARDIS was female. (PROSE: The Lying Old Witch in the Wardrobe, TV: The Doctor's Wife)
On several key occasions, the TARDIS's close bond with the Doctor proved to be decisive in interaction with other TARDISes. When the Seventh Doctor had the consciousness of a nascent TARDIS planted in his mind as part of a Time Lord experiment, not only was the new consciousness more stable than other such imprints due to his link to his own TARDIS, but another TARDIS-mind was later able to communicate with the Doctor's ship and use that insight to understand what they should do. (AUDIO: Unregenerate) When the Eleventh Doctor accidentally caused a Type 1 TARDIS to panic and unleash anti-time across the universe out of fear at the chaos it read from the Doctor's mind, the other twelve Doctors were able to convince the Type 1 to stop by linking it to their own TARDISes, the Type 1 accessing the TARDIS's databanks and convincing it that the universe was worth preserving. (COMIC: The Lost Dimension)
It also exhibited a rudimentary sense of humour, choosing to display only images of attractive female companions to Amy Pond when ordered to exhibit past companions of the Doctor, causing him to chide it for not at least including "the tin dog". (HOMEVID: Meanwhile in the TARDIS) It did something similar when showing Clara Oswald images of past companions, including choosing a full-length image of Amy showing her legs as opposed to the simple portrait photos otherwise shown; this slideshow occurred after Clara deduced laughter coming from the console when she asked if she was the first girl to stay the night in the TARDIS. This was in the midst of the TARDIS playing an elaborate practical joke on Clara that involved scaring her with a holographic leopard in the bathroom and time-looping the human and preventing her from finding the bedroom — while at the same time meeting multiple versions of herself. (HOMEVID: Clara and the TARDIS) The TARDIS also seemed to openly mock Clara by chosing Oswald's form for its holographic interface at one point. (TV: Hide)The TARDIS displayed a feminine personality when her matrix was temporarily transferred into the humanoid body of Idris. While in this form, it thought Rory was "pretty" and stated that it had chosen the Doctor as a travelling companion. It also referred to the TARDIS remains in a junkyard as "her sisters", implying that it considered all TARDISes on some level as female. Although the TARDIS had a habit of forgetting the Doctor's companions it did seem to be somewhat familiar with Earth culture, once comparing the Doctor's efforts to build a working TARDIS console to "a nine-year-old trying to rebuild a motorbike in his bedroom". It was puzzled by the Doctor's reference to fish fingers. When asked its name by the Doctor, it chose to be called "Sexy" because that's what he called it in private (it later introduced itself to Rory and Amy this way); it also expressed fondness for being called "Old Girl". Just prior to Idris' body being destroyed and the TARDIS' consciousness reverting to what it was, the TARDIS shared a tearful "hello" with the Doctor and was heard to utter the words "I love you" as the shell of Idris disappeared. In response to the Doctor's "Can you hear me?" the TARDIS independently operated one of its own levers, thus proving its sentience and that it could indeed hear the Doctor. (TV: The Doctor's Wife)
The TARDIS' loyalty and affection for the Doctor did not end following the Idris encounter, as Clara Oswald during one incident convinced the TARDIS to pilot itself into a pocket universe, despite the risks to the ship, in order to rescue the Doctor. It should be noted however that the TARDIS did consider leaving the Doctor to die, showing a bit of cowardice until Clara persuaded it to rescue him. The TARDIS didn't like Clara but realised that it was being selfish when Clara spoke to it and went to rescue the Doctor. Not long after, the Doctor apparently managed to convince it to do it again in order to rescue an alien from the same universe. (TV: Hide)
According to River Song, the Doctor could just "swagger off back to his TARDIS" after defeating whole armies and "open the doors with a snap of his fingers". The Tenth Doctor responded that "Nobody can open a TARDIS by snapping their fingers," and that it didn't work like that, but after River died, he tested this ability out and found that River was telling the truth. (TV: Forest of the Dead) The Doctor has been seen to use this ability a few times (TV: Forest of the Dead, The Eleventh Hour, Day of the Moon, The Caretaker, Hell Bent) with it only failing once due to House being in control instead of the TARDIS itself. (TV: The Doctor's Wife) Despite the TARDIS' former animosity towards her, Clara Oswald later gained this ability. (TV: The Day of the Doctor, The Caretaker) Later, the TARDIS even allowed Clara to pilot her on two occasions using a psychic link; on the first occasion this was at the Doctor's behest, but the second occasion occurred when the Doctor was incapacitated and at Clara's initiative, even though it resulted in Clara unintentionally transporting the TARDIS to Gallifrey early in the Doctor's life, despite the potential for a paradox to occur. (TV: Listen) Clara was later allowed to help the Doctor pilot at times (TV: The Girl Who Died et al) and displayed the ability to pilot another TARDIS on her own from her experience with the Doctor's TARDIS, despite the layout being different. (TV: Hell Bent)
When the Twelfth Doctor hesitated to regenerate, the TARDIS flashed the lights, particularly on the centre column, at the Doctor when he commented on how saving the universe was a treadmill. The Doctor responded to the TARDIS' actions, stating that "yes, yes I know they'll get it all wrong without me." The TARDIS then flashed its lights at him again, only stopping when he decided to regenerate after all. (TV: Twice Upon a Time)
Over its long history with the Doctor, the TARDIS came to several ends where it was actually destroyed, either rebuilding itself later or stopping the damage from occurring in the first place through temporal actions. These "deaths" included;
- Breaking apart while exposed to the forces outside the universe (TV: The Mind Robber)
- The internal dimensions collapsing due to missing components (AUDIO: Time Reef)
- Burning in time spillage from a vortex rupture (PROSE: The Crystal Bucephalus); this assault was averted before complete destruction but still required the ship to rebuild itself
- Being broken apart by the gravity manipulations of Tractators, requiring the Gravis to pull it back together (TV: Frontios)
- Shattering across the infinity of time for a second due to a temporal explosion (AUDIO: Paper Cuts)
- Reforming into a SARDIT after colliding with the Time Scaphe and being invaded by the Process (PROSE: Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible)
- Being time rammed by an alternative TARDIS on the Silurian Earth (PROSE: Blood Heat), only escaping due to a Fortean Flicker displacing it just before destruction (PROSE: Happy Endings).
- Being erased from existence by a conceptual bomb, until the Doctors managed to avert the circumstances that led to the bomb being deployed against them in the first place (AUDIO: The Light at the End)
- Being torn apart after being caught in a dimensional rift leading between Earth and Avalon (PROSE: The Shadows of Avalon); it was only able to restore itself by latching on to I.M. Foreman's universe-in-a-bottle, and even then the Faction Paradox biodata virus that it was attempting to contain caused it to mutate into the Edifice until the Doctor drained its power (PROSE: The Ancestor Cell)
- Exploding and causing the Time Field after being taken over by the Silence. (TV: The Pandorica Opens /The Big Bang, The Time of the Doctor)
- Having the engines explode upon collision with the salvage ship whilst the defences were down. (TV: Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS) However the TARDIS froze the explosion by "wrapp[ing] her hands around the force" to give the Doctor time to resolve the issue.
In the alternate timeline where the Doctor died on Trenzalore, the TARDIS itself was dying as well, presumably due to the Doctor's death and had grown to a giant size due to a "size leak" and acted as his tomb. Its console room was overgrown as well and the console replaced by a bright light that was a scar allowing access to the Doctor's time stream. (TV: The Name of the Doctor)
Behind the scenes Edit
- The importance of the TARDIS to the Doctor Who franchise was recognised in late 2009 when the BBC unveiled a new version of the Doctor Who logo which entered service in 2010; the logo incorporates the initials DW formed in the familiar police box shape of the Doctor's TARDIS.
- Although the TARDIS has been a constant presence in the television series since 1963, it has almost always been essentially a mode of conveyance, with the majority of stories taking place away from the vessel. There have been a few exceptions, such as The Edge of Destruction and Time Crash in which the entire action of a story takes place within the TARDIS. Amy's Choice also falls into this category, although given the illusory nature of the story, much of it was filmed on locations and sets other than the actual TARDIS. The Invasion of Time was the first story to give viewers an extensive tour of the bowels of the TARDIS (other than occasional glimpses of individual rooms); a more modest "tour" occurred in Castrovalva. Viewers also saw new aspects of the TARDIS in the 1996 TV movie. In the comic strips, several stories have taken place almost entirely within the TARDIS, including Changes and Tesseract. In the television story The Doctor's Wife, more of the TARDIS was actively explored (albeit very similar areas) and parts of said areas were used by the antagonist to try to trap or kill the occupants; this episode marked the first time since the series had returned to television in 2005 that extensive areas beyond the control and wardrobe rooms were explored on screen. Later, Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS gave an extensive tour of the TARDIS.
- The Doctor's TARDIS appeared in the video game Fallout in a random encounter.
- The Doctor's TARDIS also appeared in the 2013 video game Call of Duty: Ghosts as a trophy stating "awarded for the largest interior with the smallest exterior."
- The TARDIS has appeared in every televised Doctor Who story with the exception of Mission to the Unknown, Doctor Who and the Silurians, The Mind of Evil, The Dæmons, The Sea Devils, The Sontaran Experiment, Genesis of the Daleks, Midnight, and The Lie of the Land. A hallucination of the TARDIS interior appears in Heaven Sent, but not the actual TARDIS.
- The characteristic wheezing noise of the dematerialising TARDIS is made by scraping a key against piano wire.
- The TARDIS makes a brief cameo in Chelmsford 123 when it materialises in the background; the Doctor exits to have a look around before reentering the TARDIS and dematerialising.
- The TARDIS cameos in The Legend of Dick and Dom: when Dick & Dom are travelling through the mists of time, the TARDIS is seen in the background.
- The TARDIS cameos in Iron Sky: while the Moon Nazis' ships approach Earth, it is seen flying by quickly.
- In a cut scene in Journey's End, the Doctor gives the Meta-Crisis Tenth Doctor a chunk of TARDIS while Donna tells them a fast way of growing one.
- Neil Gaiman, writer of The Doctor's Wife, writing in The Brilliant Book 2012, indicated that Idris/the TARDIS was at one point also scripted to remark that it chose to remain in the police box form not because of a broken chameleon circuit, but because the Doctor liked it. It also was to have qualified it calling Rory "pretty" and Amy as "the orangy girl" by stating it rarely remembered the names of the Doctor's companions.
- Suranne Jones' performance as the TARDIS in The Doctor's Wife marks one of only a handful of occasions that an actor has portrayed an actual vessel and its consciousness. Prior to this episode, Nicholas Courtney portrayed the TARDIS infected by anti-time and acting of its own free will in the form of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart in AUDIO: Zagreus. The TARDIS' interface, which allows limited direct communication, later allowed two other actresses to portray an aspect of the TARDIS: Caitlin Blackwood in TV: Let's Kill Hitler as the interface takes the form of young Amelia Pond; and Jenna Coleman in TV: Hide as the interface takes the form of Clara Oswald.
- The scene in the TV story Terror of the Autons where the Third Doctor mentions his TARDIS' and the Master's TARDIS' models of dematerialisation circuits turns out differently in the novelisation Doctor Who and the Terror of the Autons. In the novelisation, the Doctor specifies his TARDIS as "one of the original Mark One's [sic]", while the Master's TARDIS is "one of these flashy Mark Two jobs", and that this is the reason why the two circuits are not interchangeable.
- The TARDIS is both an ally and an enemy in the Doctor Who: Legacy mobile game. In addition a special Doctor-like ally called "A Mad Man with a Box", which has an appearance of the TARDIS, was created for one of the anniversaries of the game.
- In the online game Wizard101, a special event (known as the "Five B.O.X.E.S.") features Doctor Who themes: it revolves around players assisting a character known as "The Professor" (a parody of "The Doctor"), who owns the "B.O.X." (a red-coloured TARDIS, disguised as a 'Telegraph Box'), with combating a villain called "The Maestro" (a parody of "The Master"), who seeks to disrupt the present by changing the past.
- The TARDIS at the Faction Paradox wiki
- The Mind Robber - The Sound of the TARDIS: A History
- The TARDIS at the Doctor Who Legacy wiki
- A Mad Man with a Box at the Doctor Who Legacy wiki