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In the Zygon Inversion episode of Doctor Who, The Doctor and Osgood had this conversation:

DOCTOR: Oh, your specs are broken. I'll fix them. You can wear mine, they're sonic.
OSGOOD: Sonic specs?
DOCTOR: Yeah.
OSGOOD: Isn't that a bit pointless? Like a visual hearing aid?
DOCTOR: What's wrong with pointless? I once invented an invisible watch. Spot the design flaw.
OSGOOD: You're talking nonsense to distract me from being really scared. It's one of your known character traits.
(She puts the sonic sunglasses on.)
DOCTOR: Don't look at my browser history.
(The sunglasses beep.)
OSGOOD: Whoa!
DOCTOR: Yeah, I said don't.

Does The Doctor look at... exotic materials on his new wearable tech? Or, is there something else which the Doctor wants to keep private and which can make others jump? Is there anything from the history of Doctor Who to suggest what this is?

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  • 11
    I think it was just a joke. Nov 11, 2015 at 9:57
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    Minor detail, but the question says "In the Zygon Inversion episode of Doctor Who (2005)", shouldn't that be "Doctor Who (2015)", or am I missing something here? Nov 11, 2015 at 20:02
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    @SpaceIsBig42 2005 is denoting the new series...
    – user931
    Nov 11, 2015 at 20:08
  • "Browser history" is a running joke with Moffat, since at least The Eleventh Hour. That time it was somebody else's history, but was clearly implied to involve erotic materials. Aug 23, 2019 at 21:11
  • tardis.fandom.com/wiki/Browser_history
    – Valorum
    Nov 25, 2023 at 12:26

2 Answers 2

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It seems pretty clear from context that the Doctor was "talking nonsense," as Osgood put it in the previous line. Whatever stimulus from the sonic specs made Osgood say "whoa" probably had nothing to do with browser history (for all we know she was just responding to it beeping in her ear), but the Doctor chose to spin out the joke further.

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  • Yeah, maybe, Osgood said Whoa after seeing the UI of the device.
    – user931
    Nov 11, 2015 at 10:39
  • My first thought was that looking at the Doctor’s browsing history would be like staring into infinity. He... gets distracted easily. Nov 11, 2015 at 12:51
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    @Paul D. Waite "Doctor’s browsing history would be like staring into infinity." - True, I also thought of TV Tropes website.
    – Zikato
    Nov 11, 2015 at 12:55
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    @PaulD.Waite Obligatory xkcd.  Also this one.
    – gidds
    Mar 28 at 18:53
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I always looked at it like this - It's a joke, in that in our world "browser history" usually includes lots of things that people don't want others to know about their darker self. However - in honesty - The Doctor travels throughout time and space - Details about future events and occurrences would be part of his "history" - and, spoiler alerts can affect future events.. SO, the information on his "browser history" would be both historical and future referenced.

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    Hi, welcome to SF&F. This is a reasonable guess, but do you have any evidence that there really is a "browser history" as opposed to The Doctor just making a joke?
    – DavidW
    Mar 26 at 13:47

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