While every incarnation of the Doctor has its funny moments, Nine (played by Christopher Eccleston) had a plethora of comical moments throughout his short tenure – from “Rose,” his very first episode, to his regeneration “Parting of the Ways.”
Many of these lines were one-liners in scary moments or taunting his enemies. Nine was an often sarcastic and frequently sassy incarnation of the Doctor, even in the direst of moments – something that definitely stands out with his incarnation. This adds a distinctive element to Eccleston being the very first Doctor of Doctor Who‘s revival.
“The Unquiet Dead” has one of the many difficult situations that Nine gets himself into. In this case, he and Rose are trapped in a cellar with walking Gelth-possessed corpses.
This quote shows that Nine shares the characteristic of having gallows humor that many incarnations of the Doctor have. Having escaped many horrifying and epic situations before, the considerably small-scale danger he and Rose were in at the time must seem like a major contrast. This also demonstrates that he is able to deflect from the terrifying by making light of a bad situation.
This line occurs when Rose Tyler (played by Bille Piper) is trying to get to know Nine better. One of the things she questions is why he would have a northern accent if he’s an alien.
This line is an early example of Nine’s snarkiness that he often displays throughout his first season. It is also a clever explanation for why if he is from another planet he should have a northern English accent. It’s a very simple comeback that works well to move both Rose and by extension the viewer onto the next thing.
This funny line from the Ninth Doctor occurs in the tense first episode of the reboot, “Rose,” when Autons are invading London and the TARDIS is in possible danger.
Nine is using his previous experience with an equal or bigger danger that sounds outlandish to new audiences but is actually perfectly plausible in context. The line also ends with an abrupt “Now, shut up a minute” to Rose, which adds to the humor and perfectly encapsulates this abrasive incarnation of the Time Lord.
Nine says this when he is protecting Jack (who would later spin-off into theTorchwood series) and Rose from the Empty Child. Jack happens to have a banana while Nine is using his sonic screwdriver.
Nine shows that either he has bizarre priorities in this very dangerous situation or he is simply trying to detract Jack and Rose from their fear by lightening the mood. Nine is also being heroic at this moment by warding the Empty Child off while they escape.
Nine responds with this quote during the very intense dinner out with Margaret the Slitheen. The quip comes in response to her calling him a God.
Nine gives a very clever response as he is both making light of this very uncomfortable situation by simultaneously putting himself down and boasting his achievements. This is also a clever meta-reference to how Nine’s actor Christopher Eccelston previously starred in Russell T. Davies’ The Second Coming as the son of God.
Nine delivers this hilarious quote when threatened by the moisturizer-obsessed Cassandra in the second episode of season 1 of New Who.
The Doctor is trying to downplay and showcase how ridiculous and vain the villainous Cassandra is with her constant need for moisturizer – due to being a stretched-out piece of skin. By this statement, he is claiming that she is not a real threat. The funny moment is typical of Nine’s confidence throughout the first season.
Nine says this line while taunting the Dalek who is imprisoned in Henry van Statten’s Alien Museum. The quote and its masterful delivery by Christopher Eccleston, is both equally funny and terrifying.
Nine is taking it out on the Dalek due to what the species put him and others through both during the Time War and before. Although it’s funny seeing as how one of his greatest enemies is imprisoned, Nine is very intimidating during this scene – making him almost scarier than the Dalek.
After landing in 1860’s Britain, Rose attempts to leave the TARDIS in her normal clothes. This prompts The Doctor to point out that her attire isn’t appropriate.
Nine’s line is one of many sassy moments as well as a humorous reference to the Jane Fonda sci-fi movie, Barbarella. The fact that Nine noticed the way she is dressed highlights his vast experience traveling through space and time, as well as Rose’s inexperience.
Nine utters this joking line to Rose before he is about to regenerate, as he tells her about Barcelona – “Not the city Barcelona, the planet Barcelona.” The quote alludes to the classic joke “My dog has no nose?” / “How does it smell?” / “Terrible.” It’s the kind of joke that encapsulates the playful side of The Nine Doctor’s personality.
However, the moment is also poignant because Nine is trying to use humor to ease the tension and be optimistic. By focusing on the positive, his soon-to-be regeneration doesn’t quite feel like death, and he can think about things that will be fun for Rose and his next incarnation.
This is what Nine says to Rose to explain why it won’t be exactly him Rose will be traveling with next, right before he regenerates.
Nine manages to still be funny even when he is minutes away from regeneration. His humor is an attempt to downplay the regeneration process to both himself and Rose, so neither would feel scared, and it shows that he can lighten the mood even in the darkest of times. The full quote, which explains that regeneration is a “dodgy process,” is also a reminder to himself and a warning to Rose that regeneration is unpredictable
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