In Twice Upon A Time, the Doctor and the Doctor visit a place where they meet

avatars (for lack of a better word) of people who are dead, and those avatars sometimes look like the people they used to be, and sometimes like featureless glass humanoids, slipping from one form to the other at will.

But I wonder why? What is the purpose of this shifting? Wouldn't it have been much more straightforward if they just kept the one shape and stuck with it throughout?

Note I'm really looking for an in-universe reason, not just a "because it looks cool" one.

1 Answer 1


The avatar said that it is a vessel for more than one set of memories, and it demonstrated this by briefly shifting from Bill to Clara. Perhaps the avatar only appears as a particular person when that personality is monopolizing the interface; the glass aspect may be the default for committee mode. The stored personalities wouldn't want to give false Testimony through their appearance.

  • Good one. Apparently I missed her saying that; I'll have to watch it again. I was too focused on each of the avatars having been someone - you know, a particular person - because their faces weren't symmetrical.
    – Mr Lister
    Dec 27, 2017 at 8:25
  • 1
    @MrLister - Each of the avatars had the same appearance when they weren't imitating a dead person, which I believe was based on that of the professor who created them.
    – Adamant
    Dec 27, 2017 at 16:21
  • Yes. The professor herself explained how it worked; I only needed to pay attention, that was all.
    – Mr Lister
    Jan 1, 2018 at 18:06

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