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10 Times It’s Been Far Too Hot in Doctor Who

Gosh, but it’s too darned hot, isn’t it?

Yes, I know there are people who love the heat and think these are the glory days and ooh ain’t global warming marvellous, but have those people never got stuck to the settee, had sweat drip into their eyes, and done a small dance of frustration as they tried to find a comfortable sleeping position? Exactly. Those people can go away.

No, wait, don’t go away. Go away after you’ve spent considerable time on the DWC. Thanks.

For anyone living in America or Australia or any of those other countries where room temperature typically exceeds the surface of the sun, this might sound baffling, but the UK is suffering a heatwave. It’s actually passed 5 degrees and the population is panicking.

So we’re turning to Doctor Who to see what the Doctor and co. do in times of extreme heat. My guess? Hop into the TARDIS and head for the North Pole where you’re guaranteed no problems whatsoever.

Here are a few times Doctor Who got hot, hot, hot.

1. The Seeds of Death

Okay, so most people were mostly okay through most of the Second Doctor story. But then the Doctor turned on Glenn Frey’s The Heat Is On and things went south.

He was trying to see off the Ice Warriors by turning on the central heating, but we can learn a great lesson from the Martians in coping with the heat. The Ice Warriors responded by–

They did what? They… They died?

Oh. Oh dear. Okay, let’s move on.

2. Inferno

Well, I’m sure next time there was extreme heat, no one died.

What’s that? Everyone died? The whole Earth?

The Third Doctor found himself in a parallel world in Inferno, only to discover… an inferno. It says so in the title. That Earth was a little further ahead in a drilling project that then roasted the planet and paved the way with lava. So next time you think of drilling something, try No More Nails instead.

3. The Daemons

Demons– sorry, Daemons and heat. They go together like Charles Dickens and a means of keeping oneself cool.

See, when Azal, the big old goat with delusions of grandeur, decides to stride across the landscape, wrecking some lovely fields and giving Godzilla a run for his money, the matter transference results in a massive heat wave rippling across the nearby area. It boiled Mr Humphrey’s marrows and curdled Mrs Wilkins’ custard. Can you boil marrows and curdle custard? Look, anything can happen when there are daemons on the scene.

4. The Visitation

It’s a lovely day to wander around the local wooded area, tip your hat to strangers, and forget all about the plague. No, it’s not Covid, you fearmongerer — it’s The Visitation!

Putting the “terror” in Terileptils, the story looks a humid affair, but that’s nothing compared to the ending. In which the Fifth Doctor helps burn down 13,200 houses then goes off, happy as Larry, open-faced, job well done, who’s for crumpets? Can’t stand the heat? TOUGH. IT’S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD.

5. The Impossible Planet/ The Satan Pit

The Devil and extreme heat. They go together like Daemons and heat.

Of course, this possibly wasn’t the actual Devil in the Satan Pit because Doctor Who is a fictional TV series, not a documentary. Good thing too: killing off MyAnna Buring was heartbreaking and if she’d have stayed in that black hole, she’d never have filmed Ripper Street.

The previous inhabitants of Krop Tor had provided the Doctor with an oxygen shell, which was nice of them because it also meant we could see a bit of fire.

6. The Runaway Bride


And golly gosh it’s hot. Look at all the heat.

That’s because this festive special was filmed in the summer, and it looked like it. Well, it could’ve looked like Christmas 2006 too because we never get a white Christmas in the UK. Nonetheless, poor David Tennant and Catherine Tate had to get all merry in the height of summer. Still, at least they were pummeled with a whole lot of water to cool them down. Honestly, sometimes, I envy the Racnoss.

7. 42

The Tenth Doctor and Martha Jones are hurtling towards the sun! Cue Vaseline!

What? Oh, yes, Vaseline was used to make them look all sweaty. Poor Michelle Collins was horribly ill too. Imagine feeling horrendous and someone from make-up coating your hair in a greasy substance. It’s like I’m A Celebrity…, but minus the kangaroo testicles. Well, presumably. No kangaroos were seen on location, but I guess you wouldn’t need all of the kangaroo anyw– you know what? Never mind. This episode looked hot; that’s all you need to know.

8. The Hungry Earth/ Cold Blood

This was set in Wales, so naturally it wasn’t actually hot. But when the Eleventh Doctor and co. head down, underneath the Earth’s surface, they find the hidden cities of the Silurians. No, sorry, homo reptilia. Because Malcolm Hulke got the names wrong all those years ago. (Still, they were Silurians again in Dinosaurs on a Spaceship, and we’re not changing our DWC tags from “Silurians” to “Homo Reptilia”. That’s properly nuts.)

The Doctor even comments on how hot it is, noting that they have the climate to grow tomatoes. I don’t know what they are, but I presume they’re something to do with tomato sauce?

9. Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS

Never has a sun, captured in the process of turning into a black hole, looked more hot.

Yes, the Eye of Harmony is a hot mess. No, okay, it looks stunning and I love it, but I was trying to be down with da yoof and I think I’m pulling it off. Anyway, Matt Smith and Jenna Coleman were lathered in sweat, and there’s the threat of cells liquifying, so yes, this certainly counts as an example of extreme heat.

And it clearly made the Doctor lose his head for a bit: remember when he noted Clara’s skirt was just a little too tight a few episodes late? Pfft. Disgraceful misogyny. How disgusting that one person might find another attractive or comment on someone’s physical appearance? C’mon Twitter, shake a fist in the air.

10. Whenever Karen Gillan’s On Screen

Heh, okay, I’m a child.

Point still stands.

To fend off Twitter, I would also like to add that Karen’s an exceptionally talented woman and I love to see her star continue to rise.

I’m still in need of a cold shower.

I think this heat’s getting to me. How are you coping, DWC readers? Any story recommendations to help everyone cool off? Orphan 55?! I CAST THEE OUT.

Philip Bates

Editor and co-founder of the Doctor Who Companion. When he’s not watching television, reading books ‘n’ Marvel comics, listening to The Killers, and obsessing over script ideas, Philip Bates pretends to be a freelance writer. He enjoys collecting everything. Writer of The Black Archive: The Pandorica Opens/ The Big Bang, The Silver Archive: The Stone Tape, and 100 Objects of Doctor Who.

10 Times It’s Been Far Too Hot in Doctor Who

by Philip Bates time to read: 4 min
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