The magic of the TARDIS is one of the cornerstones of Doctor Who. Just like Narnia’s wardrobe, the characters step out of the Doctor’s bigger-on-the-inside blue box onto some amazing, fantasy world and begin their latest adventure. For former star David Tennant, though, there was a real life problem with filming this type of scene that often took him out of the wonder of the moment.
The Tenth Doctor actor revealed to the Radio Times that he often had trouble closing the TARDIS door after leaving it, as it has to be cobbled together on location, which means that sometimes it’s not assembled correctly.
“There’s something very pleasing about stepping out of that iconic box wherever it might land. But with the actual box itself it was always quite hard to close the door, because it was flat-packed… It would be assembled usually rather quickly – and very expertly of course. But sometimes, like any Ikea cabinet, the doors weren’t always as flush as they might be when you were making a big exit or entrance.”
We imagine if you asked the others Doctors, they would all agree with Tennant’s annoyance with the TARDIS prop, as the time machine has always been constructed that way since the show’s beginnings. Nowadays, Jodie Whittaker is the one having to struggle to close the TARDIS’ doors on location.
Speaking of Whittaker’s TARDIS, the Thirteenth Doctor’s arrival coincided with a redesign of the inside of the ship as well. Revealed back in season 11’s second episode, “The Ghost Monument”, the new TARDIS has received a mixed reception from fans due to its unusual gloomy, cave-like interior and the peculiar crystalline console and buttresses. However, many folks also love it for calling back to the more organic TARDIS owned by the Ninth and Tenth Doctor.
Whatever the inside looks like though, we now know that the Doctor will always have trouble closing the door and we’ll be watching the rest of Doctor Who season 11 very closely to see if we can spot this happening to Whittaker on screen.