Typing Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor

Eleven ENTP

ENTPs:

Quick, ingenious, stimulating, alert, and outspoken. Resourceful in solving new and challenging problems. Adept at generating conceptual possibilities and then analyzing them strategically. Good at reading other people. Bored by routine, will seldom do the same thing the same way, apt to turn to one new interest after another.

This was an easy one, because ENTPs are one of the easiest types to pick. Do you know anyone who speaks predominantly in memes and puns, with whom every conversation feels like an exhilarating rollercoaster ride, and who relishes debating and arguing — about anything — just for the thrill of it? If so, you have yourself an ENTP friend, and you should consider yourself privileged, because they’re one of the rarest, but also the most awesome and engaging types (in my opinion).

ENTPs are ruled by Extraverted Intuition (Ne), which means their heads are constantly brimming with new ideas and possibilities which they can get very excited about, and allows them to perceive connections between ideas and phenomena very quickly and instinctively. Their Ne is supported by auxiliary Introverted Thinking (Ti), which processes and analyses the many ideas that present themselves to the ENTP with internal, subjective logic, making them a very rational and logical, but also profoundly intellectually creative personality.

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It’s pretty clear to me that the Eleventh Doctor (who also happens to be my favourite Doctor), is an ENTP. For one thing, the Eleventh Doctor positively bleeds Extraverted Intuition (Ne). He’s constantly excited by the many new ideas and possibilities that his intuition generates, leaping dizzyingly from idea to idea, leading to his appearing hyperactive. Dominant Ne-users (ENTPs and ENFPs) are very easy to spot because of their Extraverted Intuition, and the way it constantly generates a slew of ideas, which tends to lead Ne-dominants to have a very animated and hyperactive, and often whimsical and child-like, manner. The Eleventh Doctor definitely conforms to this stereotype: he has a goofy and whimsical manner and comes across as unfocussed and excitable. Another great fictional ENTP character characterised by Ne-dominant “goofiness” is Captain Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean.

One thing that struck me as a very ENTP thing Eleven did was in Flesh and Stone, where River chided him “Time’s running out!” while they were being pursued by Weeping Angels, and Eleven momentarily scoffed at the remark before becoming captivated by another completely abstract idea that his intuition generated from that innocuous remark of River’s: “maybe time could run out? Maybe time can be unwritten?” So Eleven was distracted by arcane metaphysical ideas in the middle of a life-threatening crisis situation. ENTP af.

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It’s also clear that, frivolous and goofy and personable as Eleven may be, he’s also highly rational and calculating, sometimes coldly so. That’s his auxiliary Introverted Thinking (Ti). Behind those animated, childlike eyes lie cool, rigorous mental processes with which he makes judgments and decisions. In The Girl Who Waited he comes to the conclusion which his logic tells him is the only feasible one — that the elder Amy must be left behind — and, putting sentimentality aside, manipulates and lies to Rory and the two Amys in order to bring about this resolution. In The Big Bang, with some quick and agile mental analysis, he figures out why the Pandorica restored the Dalek, and how he can use the Pandorica, in combination with his exploding Tardis, to restore the rapidly decaying universe. The way he puzzles continuously over Clara, the “Impossible Girl”, in Series 7 is also indicative of Ti in that he simply can’t rest until he understands it, he can’t just let it remain a mystery—a very Ti thing.

Another, more empathetic and sensitive side of Eleven’s is represented by his tertiary Extraverted Feeling (Fe), which makes him sensitive to the feelings of others and concerned about maintaining group harmony. Eleven’s Fe is fairly well-developed, I think. He knows when people need emotional support, and how to give it to them. Eleven is adept at comforting and giving reassurance to his companions and friends. In Vincent and the Doctor he comforts Amy after she becomes upset at finding that, even after all they did for him, Vincent van Gogh still took his own life within months of their visit. His taking Amy to see Van Gogh’s paintings at the Musée d’Orsay and lots of other things she wanted to see is itself a manifestation of his Extraverted Feeling, in his empathy and generosity towards Amy after Rory’s apparent death. His Fe also manifests itself in his need for affirmation, for example, of his fashion choices (“bowties are cool”).

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Eleven also has a darker, brooding, tortured side to his personality which simmers beneath the surface. I think this is a manifestation of his inferior Introverted Sensing (Si), particularly in the way his subjective memories, and the sensations and emotions associated with those memories exert an influence over him. The negative emotions associated with his negative memories (negative because his memories are processed through the subjective, internalised filter of Si) of things like the Time War, his past companions, and his own actions weigh intensely heavily upon him, and create this bubbling well of regret and self-loathing inside of him which sometimes boils over onto the surface. I also think we see him in the throes of a Si-grip in The Snowmen, where, after losing Amy and Rory, he retreats into reclusion and self-hating isolation, spiting the thought of engaging with the world and with new people again, being full of regret over the fate of his two best friends (for which he blames himself).

My top 5 Tardis teams

Now that Clara’s snuffed it, and the Doctor-Companion team of the last two years has come to a tragic end, I feel like I ought to assess where Twelve and Clara figure in my personal game of Doctor-Companion top trumps.

Here are my five favourite Doctor-Companion teams of the last 52 years.


5. Four and Romana

Technically this is two Tardis teams, but I really couldn’t choose between the two Romanas here. Romana (both of them) is probably my favourite classic companion, and I thought they both had superb, highly watchable dynamics with Tom Baker’s aloof, alien Doctor. To be honest, Tom Baker’s extraordinary and mesmerising Doctor makes any Doctor-Companion team he’s part of delightfully engaging to watch, but I adored most of all watching him with Romana.

His relationship with the first Romana, played by the beautiful Mary Tamm, was brilliant because it seemed like the Doctor had finally met his match in a companion. Unlike the succession of dim humans he’d taken to travelling with, who awed at his intelligence and obediently did as they were told, Romana considered herself his equal, if not his superior: she was just as intelligent as he was, if not more, and made a point of reminding him of her superior academic accomplishments. She rarely took orders from him without argument and was generally something entirely new to the Doctor. It was brilliant. Nevertheless, they had a great friendship and, despite their prickly moments, were a joy to watch together.

The Fourth Doctor with the second Romana, played by Lalla Ward, was a warmer and more intimate relationship, Romana less icy and prickly towards the Doctor, more fond of him and more appreciative of his experience. Four and Romana II had a more traditional Doctor-Companion relationship of uncomplicated friendship and mutual love of adventure, but the team of two Time Lords still made for a very unconventional and distinctive dynamic. Romana was still, in many ways, the Doctor’s equal, and, accordingly, her relationship with Tom Baker’s Doctor was nothing like that of Sarah-Jane or Leela. It was intellectual and clever and very alien. I loved that. It also helped that there was romance between Tom Baker and Lalla Ward offscreen, manifesting itself onscreen in wonderful chemistry between the Doctor and companion.

I think my favourite Four-Romana moment might have been the Doctor and Romana gadding about Paris in City of Death. They were too cute, and Romana looked just lovely in her schoolgirl outfit.

4. Ten and Donna

Ten and Donna were surely the definitive Doctor-Companion pairing of the Tenth Doctor’s era. Ten and Rose were sweet, but Ten and Donna were genuinely fun. Like Twelve and Clara, Ten and Donna were just two best friends romping around time and space, having the time of their lives together. They were just great mates, and that was their irresistible charm. It helped that Catherine Tate was hilarious, and that Tate and David Tennant had positively electric chemistry together. The banter was — literally — out of this world.

We all remember Ten and Donna fondly for the banter and the comedy and the great friendship between the two, but one of the most memorable and significant Ten-Donna moments was surely Donna’s pleading with the Doctor in The Fires of Pompeii to save Caecilius and his family. It showed how important Donna was to the Doctor personally, that she was more than just a good friend to him. To an extent I don’t think Rose or Martha would have been able to stand up to the Doctor like Donna did in that episode and cut down the Doctor’s Time Lord pretensions the way she did.

3. One, Susan, Ian and Barbara

The original Tardis team. These four were a quirky and eclectic mix of characters, but they were the most endearing and lovable group you could find. There was the tetchy, spiky First Doctor, who nevertheless exuded a certain magic and twinkle that made you love him, and who mellowed over time, under the influence of his companions, into the whimsical, charming, compassionate figure we now recognise as the Doctor. There was Susan, the Doctor’s sweet teenage granddaughter, a rather helpless figure at first, but who eventually came into her own, and eventually left in Doctor Who’s first ever heartbreaking companion exit, the beginning of a beloved tradition. Ian and Barbara, Susan’s abducted schoolteachers, were the most lovely pair, bringing a human groundedness to the first years of the show that could easily otherwise have been very alien. Together they were like a family, albeit a very odd family, all were written so well that you couldn’t help feeling a strong connection to them.

Part of the charm of their unique dynamic was that they were all stuck together, thrown together under unfortunate circumstances (the Tardis was malfunctioning), traipsing across time and space together trying to find a way out of their situation. None of them, except perhaps Susan, was particularly enamoured with the situation they had all found themselves in together at first, but they all grew so close and fond of each other over time. Even the Doctor, who was positively antagonistic towards Ian and Barbara at first, became very fond of them, and came to appreciate the little family he had found himself with, and, when Ian and Barbara eventually found a way to return to Earth, he was very upset and saddened to see them leave.

2. Twelve and Clara

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Now that I’ve seen two series of Twelve and Clara, I can say confidently that I love them more than any other Tardis team save for Eleven, Amy and Rory. Clara herself is kind of a middling companion for me — I like her, and she’s grown on me immensely in Series 9 — but she isn’t among my favourites. That said, though, I think Twelve and Clara are nothing short of perfect together. They’re an odd couple, the old man and the pretty young woman, but it works so well. These too are as close as any Doctor and companion can be; they’re not lovers, like Ten and Rose, but just best friends, inseparable friends, who are each other’s entire universes, enjoying each other’s company while they explore the universe together. They’re, frankly, adorable to watch together, and I’m going to miss them so much now that Clara’s gone.

Basically any scene where Twelve and Clara are having fun and enjoying themselves together is vintage Twelve-Clara. Take your pick. A particular favourite of mine was Twelve lecturing Clara on the use of the word “space” before things in Sleep No More. But also the final moments of Last Christmas were terrific, Clara and the Doctor gazing fiercely, almost lovingly, into each other’s eyes, the spirit of adventure taken hold of them both, their connection stronger than it’s ever been.

1. Eleven, Amy and Rory

What can I say? Eleven is my favourite Doctor and Amy is my favourite companion. Eleven’s era is my favourite era of the show, in no small part because of the wonderful characters of the Eleventh Doctor, Amy Pond, and her long-suffering husband, Rory Pond Williams. Amy and Rory were just the most adorable, romantic couple, and their relationship with the zany, wacky Eleventh Doctor made them an irresistible Tardis team, and a positive joy to watch together.

I have a sentimental attachment to these three, because, having only started watching the show in earnest during Eleven’s era, they were my “first” Tardis team, the first Doctor and companion team I followed week-to-week. I think they might have been a major part of the reason I became a fan of this show, because I adored these three wonderful characters so much.

Some of my favourite moments with these three include their reunion in The Pandorica Opens — the Doctor’s hilarious reunion with Roman Rory, and Rory’s touching attempts to get through to Amy. Also, just watching these three muck about was magical, as in episodes like The Power of Three, otherwise a fairly unremarkable script.


What are your favourite Doctor-Companion teams?