Episode 5 of Doctor Who: Flux contained a secret Easter egg that made a classic Dalek-based tale an official part of the show’s canon.
Doctor Who: Flux has secretly made a story published in Doctor Who Magazine which involves a classic Dalek spin canon. Doctor who has never really cared about continuity: «It’s impossible for a show about a dimension-hopping time traveler to have a canon,Then-writer (and future showrunner) Steven Moffat told audiences at San Diego Comic-Con 2008. That allows for an infinitely flexible format, one that involves everything from television episodes to audio dramas, from novels to comics. Still, current showrunner Chris Chibnall grew up loving media in general, and in Doctor Who: Flux episode 5, has subtly incorporated a short story from Doctor Who Magazine in its main arch.
Doctor Who: Flux Episode 5 gave viewers a tour of UNIT, the United Nations Intelligence Task Force, a covert organization dedicated to protecting Earth from extraterrestrial threats and one of the Doctor’s key allies on Earth’s adventures. the Doctor who The episode picked up the story of UNIT, revealing that the United Nations began the process of forming UNIT in 1958. The organization’s original leader, General Farquhar, took almost a decade to bring UNIT’s British branch into operation. Still, by 1967 UNIT was fully formed, and the episode even briefly showed Farquhar’s office at its first headquarters.
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As James Johnson noted in Twitter, the production team put a lot of effort into the design of the set, with papers nailed to the walls. These include some deep cuts in Doctor who continuity, with references to Torchwood: Children of the Earth and the classic tale “Remembrance of the Daleks.” The latter explicitly mentioned the Doctor, as well as a young woman named Judith Winters, who was psychically linked to a Dalek battle computer in the main story. However, the girl was not named in “Remembrance of the Daleks”; the name actually comes from a short story published in Doctor Who Magazine # 195 in 1992, in which one of the Doctor’s companions visited her in a psychiatric institution. Looks like Doctor Who: Flux you just made this short story, called “In the Community,” part of the main timeline.
This is a lovely little detail, a continuity reference that’s an impressively deep cut into Doctor who science. It seems so appropriate for the Chibnall era, given Doctor who was canceled in 1989 and was kept alive for over a decade in other media, including short stories in Doctor Who Magazine. Chibnall was himself a Doctor who fan through the dark times between 1989 and 2005, in which Doctor who it was off the air, and it certainly followed the magazine. When Russell T. Davies relaunched Doctor who In 2005, she honored him by working closely with the staff of Doctor Who Magazine, giving them advance copies of the scripts and even offering an opportunity for his team to tell the story of Paul McGann’s regeneration, preparing for Christopher Eccleston’s debut. Still, the stage design in Doctor Who: Flux goes one step further, recognizing Doctor Who Magazine in a pretty subtle way.
What makes this particularly impressive, of course, is the subtlety with which it has been done. The Chibnall era has often honored the classics Doctor who above the relaunch, and there have been times when the continuity has felt like a sledgehammer. However, this is a much more subtle and nuanced approach, an entertaining Easter egg that adds more depth to the story without being intrusive. Hopefully this kind of continuity will become the norm once Doctor Who: Flux is over.