So there’s only one real thing that could top it then, isn’t there? The BBC went all out a decade ago for the 50th, in what feels like an amalgam of what made the past multi-Doctor specials work so well: “The Day of the Doctor” has the tightness of “Three Doctors,” as well as its overall impact on the ongoing story of the show beyond just being an anniversary team-up with the return of Gallifrey to canon after its seeming destruction prior to the events of the 2005 revival. It also has the big scope of “Five Doctors” because of the way it deals with that huge event (and even the cheeky way it brings all the Doctors together to do it).
And to make things even better, it was far from all we got. “Night of the Doctor” saw Paul McGann return to on-screen Doctor Who for the first time since 1996 for a gleeful, all-too-short glimpse at his official regeneration, and the docudrama “An Adventure in Space and Time” gave us a remarkably touching look back at the creation of Doctor Who itself, and William Hartnell’s enduring legacy. This is going to be the one to beat for a good while… and we’ll have to wait and see if the 60th comes close!