This was undoubtedly many people’s favourite scene in The Day of the Doctor, the fiftieth anniversary celebration of Doctor Who:
I like to think this actually was The Fourth Doctor…except it’s post regeneration. In fact, here, he’s completely human but still retains some bits and pieces of his life as The Doctor. He’s able to grow old at the rate of a normal human being.
It gave me the idea that each previous incarnation of The Doctor doesn’t just disappear in the back reaches of the mind of current Doctors. Through some kind of Time Lord timey wimey, they’re sent somewhere else in time and space, as a regular human and allowed to live out the rest of their natural life in a (mostly) quiet retirement. So Tom Baker’s Doctor went on to be the curator of the museum. One could argue that we’ve seen Peter Capaldi’s Twelfth Doctor’s retirement already when we met him in ancient Rome. Maybe David Tenant’s Doctor was given a second chance at being John Smith – though not in the same time as we saw in Human Nature.
If I were ever to write Doctor Who – and there’s a fat chance if I ever heard one – that’s an idea I’d love to explore. Whether it’s what Stephen Moffat and company intended, I think it’s still a fun little idea to explore.