I have had so many people ask me about this that I just decided to dedicate a webpage to it. Hopefully this answers most questions, but as time goes on I suspect I will add to it. If you are not a fan of Doctor Who, reading this will make no sense whatsoever, and might cause your brain to hurt. Probably best to view another page. Apologies.
What are all the items on the table? From Left To Right, Plate of Jelly Babies, Bag of Jelly Babies, 2nd Doctors Recorder( in his hand) Key to Time, Pears and a Banana, 9's Sonic in Hand, Cricket Ball in 5's hand, Tardis Key, Fob Watch, Satsuma, Jammie Dodgers on plate, Psychic Paper, Banana, Amy's Apple, Hypercube, 10's hand in a jar, Fish Fingers and Custard, 11's special straw that adds extra fizz, Rivers Diary, 7th Doctors question mark Umbrella
Why did you place the figures where you did? I initially started wanting to have 3 characters in very specific positions, 4,9, and war. I also knew I wanted to keep every figure in the exact same position as they original figures are.
I really always wanted the war doctor in the middle. I painted this before the special aired but knew that from the episode “The Name Of The Doctor” what he did in the time war caused him to stop calling himself the Doctor. I took this a step further, rather than being just an atrocity so horrible he could no longer be the Doctor, he in fact sacrificed his name for the Universe and his other selves. He took an entire regeneration killed it and buried it in his head to save the universe and effectively allowed the others to go on being the Doctor.
The title of the episode wasn’t about what the Doctors name was, or who was going to say it. That episode was about the revelation to the audience that his participation in the Time War was not in “The Name of the Doctor”.
Some might argue that committing 2 acts of genocide is hardly a sacrifice, but to a man who values life above all there is no greater, especially when he has to do it for the greater good. Now with the events of the Day of the Doctor, we know that he in fact saved Galifrey. That to me makes the sacrifice of his name, the disavowment of an entire regeneration and some 400 or more years of regret and guilt all the more powerful.
Hartnell was placed where he was because I knew that people would say that he should be in the center, luckily in the original there is a figure to the immediate right of center that is leaning in and pointing at the center figure. It was too easy to turn that into him pointing with his index finger as if to say, “I was number One. That should be my seat”
9 was placed were where most people think Judas is.(That position in reality goes to where 5 sits) But since most people take that position to belong to Judas as he is holding a knife I ran with it. Not to start a flame war but not returning for the 50th was just silly. And in fact he will now be remembered more for not doing it than if he had. It will always be a footnote on his career and a sour note for many fans. It’s his personal right, but as tenant put it a bit churlish.
Speaking on 10, I put him there as in the original image that figure is in the most visually dynamic pose. I thought that would speak well of 10’s personality and let me show off the suit. Capaldi is where he is because with his addition I know had the 13 Doctors to do a proper last supper tribute. But no one knows what his outfit will look like. Luckily I was able to kill 2 birds with one stone by using both of 11’s outfits. Capaldi is in the Christmas outfit having just regenerated and is in the middle of taking it off. I imagine 11 is off to the side saying to the others,” Do you see this?! He is taking off the bow tie.”
Beyond that everyone else was placed for mostly aesthetic reasons. And I always knew that I wanted 4 on the end because in the original image there is a very faint but visible pattern on the table cloth that comes down on each side. Its only on the two sides though, my immediate thought was to place 4 on the end so that his scarf could be easily seen, and wrap all the way down the table around each doctor, and fall off the table in the same two spots replicating the table cloth pattern.
This gave me a way to achieve the draped look of some of the positions of the original while letting me emphasize that they are in fact all the same man.