In Journey to the centre of the TARDIS, the Doctor uses the big friendly button to reset things - effectively clearing Clara's memories of the episode.

In The name of the Doctor, the TARDIS' ruins cause some sort of memory leak that happens to restore Clara's memories of that episode.

After such leak, does Clara still have those memories?

I wondered this after watching The time of the Doctor - I had thought that maybe, on a desperate move, Clara would speak the Doctor's name (which he apparently saw in the library within the TARDIS during Journey to the centre of the TARDIS) to forcibly bring in the Time Lords.

The fact that she didn't suggested me that she didn't have the memories anymore, but there are some reasons why this is not necessarily the case:

  • Clara may have respected the Doctor's choice of not bringing the Time Lords.
  • The Time Lords would recognize the female voice which is clearly not the Doctor's. Although this is not very important, because anyone knowing the Doctor's name should probably be in the right universe anyway.

But now then, Clara seemed pretty desperate at the end, as she even tried to incite the Time Lords to help the Doctor.

  • 1
    Your second point might not be a valid one.
    – bitmask
    Mar 29, 2014 at 23:30
  • 1
    @bitmask: It is valid. The Time Lords knew all of the Doctor's twelve and total [at that "time"] incarnations, and none of them were female. Jan 9, 2015 at 12:54

1 Answer 1


Ultimately, it is unclear.

On one hand, it could be that she only possessed those memories for as long as she was in the dying TARDIS or that she kept them for a while and they wore off after some time. This would mean that she could not recall reading the Doctor's real name, nor would she remember the Doctor telling her about the echoes of herself that he had already met. Of course, with her having already entered his time scar by this point, that would not really matter since she would have a more first-hand knowledge of it (even if she only has a vague recollection of her echoes' lives). And the Doctor probably would have filled her in at some point after the fact.

On the other hand, it is entirely possible that she does remember his name, but because of what the Doctor told her at the end of "The Name of the Doctor", she understands that his real name is unimportant in comparison to his chosen name of "the Doctor."

DOCTOR: I said he was me. I never said he was the Doctor.

CLARA: I don't understand.

DOCTOR: Look, my name, my real name, that is not the point. The name I chose is the Doctor. The name you choose, it's like, it's like a promise you make.

This would certainly fit with her two epiphany-like moments concerning his name and the meaning behind it in the following two episodes. In "The Day of the Doctor", she inspires the Doctor to find another way to resolve the Time War by reminding him of the "promise" that his name represents. And in "The Time of the Doctor", she realizes that the Question is asking for the wrong name and that the only name he needs is "the Doctor." His real name means nothing; it is his chosen name that defines who he is. Furthermore, when she answered the Question, she was standing in a truth field and thus, could not have been lying. She truly believed that his name was "the Doctor," and, in my opinion, that moment is made considerably more powerful if she has knowledge of both names to base her answer on. It would be completely within her power to say his real name and release the Time Lords, but she realizes that "the Doctor" is more of a name to him than his "proper" name is, and that it is what needs to be said at that moment. To her, his real name is "the Doctor." Whatever his "proper" name is doesn't even warrant consideration in her mind.

  • what about the doctor does he now remember what happend in Journey to the centre of the TARDIS and stayed that way Apr 16, 2016 at 0:01

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