Every episode of Doctor Who I've seen shows him with the Psychic Paper. Does it ever discuss how/where he got it?

1 Answer 1


The Second Doctor was given psychic paper while employed as an agent by the Time Lords' covert organisation, the Celestial Intervention Agency. The CIA had developed the technology. (PDA: World Game) --Psychic Paper

Psychic paper is a piece of psycho-interactive material that affects the minds of people who see it. The paper makes them believe they are seeing the identification of a person of authority, usually cued by the suggestion prompted by the agent using it. The paper would work on most minds but was unable to affect those of a genius intellect. It has reappeared in the series commonly used by the Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh incarnations of the Doctor. It can be used as a credit card, an ID for an electronic system (no idea how THAT works) or a keycard. The Doctor has used it to send messages through time, though the results vary widely.

It is one of the two most common hand props of the Doctor. The other is the sonic screwdriver. Psychic paper was seen onscreen in the episode "The End of the World" written by Russell Davies broadcast April 5, 2005.

  • Thanks. Can you tell me an episode number or name?
    – shachna
    Jun 24, 2012 at 2:22
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    It would be nice to see more detail of how he got the psychic paper (e.g. quotes from the relevant Second Doctor script) rather than a summary of what psychic paper is, which the OP presumably already knows.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Aug 13, 2018 at 11:08
  • @Randal'Thor - "World Game" as referenced in the answer is a novel (by Terrance Dicks), which are generally considered non-canonical, although TV writers do often mine them for ideas, which is apparently what happened here ... although given the publication date the book was presumably written as a tie in to the launch of the new series, so maybe both Dicks and the screen writers were working from a behind-the-scenes idea, perhaps a series bible that would have been produced by Davies, at which point maybe this is canon. Hard to tell, really.
    – Jules
    Aug 13, 2018 at 14:54

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