I have been a Doctor Who fan for years, maybe even decades now, and one of the first rules of the Doctor I learned was that the Doctor can regenerate 12 times, and then he is no more. A Time Lord does not live on... That rule is seemingly being tossed out the window soon.
According to the Guardian, in an episode of the Sarah Jane Adventures, which we mentioned briefly yesterday, (airing October 25th and 26th) The Doctor will be asked how many times he can regenerate, and he will tell the person that there is no limit. This rule was set into place during the Tom Baker era in the story "The Deadly Assassin." Now it seems that the show is being "retconned." Let's break this down to find out why this is happening: == TEASER ==
Why get rid of one of the biggest Time Lord rules though?
They're running out of regenerations, and this series still has a few legs to stand on. Back in the mid-70s, when the rule was made, it made perfect sense. Creators didn't know how long the show would last, and being that Tom Baker's Doctor was the 4th incarnation, 12 regenerations seemed a long ways away. Now, 35 years later, we're nearing the end of the cycle, and this train doesn't seem like it's going to stop anytime soon, no matter how many Doctors they go through.
Is there another way around this problem?
Sure, a few Time Lords ::cough:: The Master ::cough:: have come back by simply jumping into another body, or they were raised from the dead. If you'll remember, The Master used his last regeneration during the Tom Baker era, and then just jumped into a new body. The Master from the new series was raised from the dead essentially in that weird vortex thingy. It's science-fiction, just make something up. Changing the rules is a bit frustrating to the die-hard Who fans.
So what now?
Well, we all knew this was coming. It was expected, if the show were to continue, but the main problem here is that according to the Guardian, there's no explanation at all. Give the fans some sort of explanation why this has changed, just don't throw it out into the wind please. Anyway, although this may be frustrating, fans (I) will learn to deal with it, and it eventually will become Time Lord Lore. Hopefully, when this happens, it will cross-over into the next season of Doctor Who (starting on Christmas, then on Easter) and they will give us some sort of reasonable explanation. Personally, I am a bit happy they're doing this so the show doesn't have to end with the person who takes over the Doctor position after Matt Smith's run is complete. What do you guys think? Is this new rule a good idea? What would you do to the show to get around the 12 regeneration Time Lord rule?