Everybody knows the basics of the Time and Relative Dimensions in Space (TARDIS) vessels, right? They are a Type 40 class of chameleon time machines built by Time Lords from the planet Gallifrey. They’re much bigger on the inside. And one of them was stolen several hundred years ago by a man whose name is a secret… a man who calls himself only the Doctor. Together they’ve traveled from one side of the universe to the other, down the line from the Big Bang to the end of the time itself… and all the while, the Doctor’s TARDIS has been stuck in the form of an antiquated English policeman’s phone booth.
Here are a few more intriguing bits of TARDIS trivia to test your knowledge. Only a fellow Time Lord would know them all!
Landing on Trenzalore
In "The Name of the Doctor," the TARDIS seems reluctant to land on the planet Trenzalore. The reason? It is the location of the Doctor’s grave… and his tomb is the TARDIS itself, now towering into the air like a skyscraper due to a "size leak." Hiding in the tomb is the Great Intelligence, an ancient enemy of the Doctor’s, willing to sacrifice his own life in order to erase all the Doctor’s good deeds throughout time and space.
Console Room Upgrade
In "The Snowmen," the TARDIS features another upgrade in a long line of console rooms. The traditional six-sided console is present, but it is far more mechanical-looking than its last two predecessors. This one even features a charger for the sonic screwdriver! The charge, naturally, lasts for centuries…
Touring the TARDIS
"Journey to the Center of the TARDIS" gives a deep tour of the vessel, including a scary look at the self-defensive portal to the engine room, the eerie living metal architectural reconfiguration system room (or Arch-Recon), the utterly massive library, and a star chamber with a direct, blinding view of the "Eye of Harmony," a dying star frozen in its state of decay in order to power the TARDIS engine.
A Living TARDIS
"The Doctor’s Wife" brought the TARDIS to life… literally. The "11th dimensional Matrix" at the core of the ship has always been sentient, but it becomes flesh and blood when a malevolent living asteroid extracts her persona and implants it into a crazed Victorian party girl named Idris… who claims the Doctor stole her!
In "Journey’s End" we learn why the TARDIS seems to be so difficult for the Doctor to operate… it was meant to have six pilots (hence the six-sided console)!
Coral Console Room
Beginning with the new 2005 series, the TARDIS console rooms were far more spacious than previous versions. The vast gold and cyan "Coral" console room in particular even appeared to be partially organic in nature, with its sinewy columns and fleshy ceiling. The overall effect was that the ship had been "growing" since we’d last since it on air.
Spare TARDIS Key
The Doctor Who movie revealed that the Doctor hides a spare key to the TARDIS just above the letter P on the "POLICE BOX" designation above the double doors.
The TARDIS had competition. In "The War Games" we see upgraded versions of the same technology, in the War Chief’s SIDRATs. Apart from their modern mirror-and-clear plastic interiors, the SIDRATs also feature enhanced "dimensional flexibility." The second Doctor was nearly crushed to death inside one when its interior dimensions shrank.
Only a Hat Stand
In Frontios, the fifth Doctor laments a serious lack of offensive weaponry onboard the ship, but at least it contained some medical supplies including a "mu-field activator" and "argon discharge globes." Unfortunately his companions aren’t able to fetch these items, and moments later the TARDIS is bombed to oblivion, leaving only the venerable hat stand! (Fear not; the Doctor is able to have the destruction reversed.)
Doctor Who's 20th Anniversary
For the 20th anniversary, the five Doctors showcased a new high-tech console with a logical series of tiers. The layout featured computer monitors and several keypads and switch banks… and far less Q-ball knobs and ball-handled levers. The overall impression was that of the formerly whimsical TARDIS being hauled into the next level of electrical and computer engineering for a more discerning audience.
The early season stark white console rooms briefly gave way to the third Doctor’s sparse wood-paneled "Victorian study" type of control room. The beautiful deep brown walls retained the ever-present decorative roundels, and the hexagonal console was there as well. However the beloved time rotor column was missing from the center and even the console panels were, in fact, simply storage bins!