Mister Fandango wrote:
I imagine finding and freeing Gallifrey would be more than enough cause to reward the Doctor with additional regenerations. (Not sure why that's not the obvious answer, since that's pretty much what the show is going to be focused on for a while.)
Well, isn't that just why it doesn't work? If the news reports are true, then the Doctor is currently on his last life, and will need to get a new regeneration cycle now
, or rather two weeks from now. And the search for Gallifrey is most likely going to take a while to pay off, maybe drag on for years. It's not going to be resolved in "The Time of the Doctor." So unless Moffat's been lying to the newspapers and Smith is still just the 12th incarnation, then new regenerations are not going to be a reward for finding Gallifrey.
Capaldi will be his 13th and final incarnation (assuming nothing else wonky is going on which, honestly, should be thanks to River's donation/sacrifice which more
than makes up for any energy he lost with the whole hand fiasco). Even after the reveal of the so-called War Doctor, Matt Smith wasn't his last incarnation. The only thing that's changed is that he has only one regeneration left now rather than two, thus making his quest to find Gallifrey a bit more imperative before he's killed as Capaldi, at least as far as my idea is concerned.
Note that this doesn't have anything to do with the Doctor's belief that he's
going to (permanently) die at Trenzalore. That's a whole other kettle of fish, and we already know
that's not the case simply because the 13th -- which he was identified as in the actual show
, by actual Time Lords and even the Doctor himself
-- shows up to save Gallifrey. And as an audience, we already know that, too, simply by the fact that Capaldi has already been cast to play the part and that he does, in fact, regenerates into Capaldi during the Christmas special. So whatever these "news reports" are, they're talking out of their ass.