I wanted to make a post about the Series 7 finale that aired 18 May 2013, so, just for the sake of someone who is behind:
The finale was called "The Name of the Doctor" and promised to reveal the Doctor's biggest secret. I mean, there was no way they were going to tell us his real name (which seemed to be what they were teasing at with an episode name like that) but the Doctor has a bergillion secrets so it could have gone anywhere. The anticipation was killer.
This entire season has actually been a little off. Not in a bad way--I still flippin' love this show--but off. Probably due to the fact that they switched companions half way through the season. It was almost like they forced through the goodbye's of the Ponds and rushed through the "Impossible Girl" arc. Both plot twists would have had more effect had there been more time (I'm not usually a fan of filler episodes but filler in Doctor Who is WAY better than in other shows). Plus, the Clara thing had me feeling cheated out of more time with her before we found out what her deal was. I'm sure she's the companion for next season but still. (Might I add that I also watched the majority of the season in under three days so that may also add to the rushed feeling).
So, the finale.
I had all this anticipation for this episode (which lived up to its promises, in a way) but I was left with more questions with answers. Clara and the Doctor go both step into the 'scar tissue' at the Doctor's tomb of his entire life traveling through time and end up seeing all of his regenerated faces. Before they leave however, they see this shadow which the (current) Doctor tells Clara is basically a regeneration that broke the promise that he made when he took the name "The Doctor" (the name they choose is a promise, which in of itself is a neat concept. What does that say about The Doctor? The Master?--I don't know any more Time Lords or their names would be here. Yes, unfortunately, I've only seen the reboot. This is the one case where being twenty years old SUCKS).
So then the shadow turns around, and we see this:
Theres been speculation on the internet that he may be a couple of things.
1) Doctor #0-- The Doctor's first face (before he stole the TARDIS and ran away). This I doubt. If he's zero, he couldn't have broken the promise of The Doctor because he wouldn't have made it yet.
2) Doctor #8.5-- this would screw up the number system Whovians seem to be attached to, but it seems like he may be the Doctor between 8 and 9; the Regeneration that fought in the Time War. I feel like this fits, but I'm not sure they're going to revisit the time war. They have a little, but it's time-locked. The episode "The End of Time" was the closest they've ever gotten before. It seems unlikely.
3) The Valeyard--This is a regeneration that (from what I gather) was said by The Master in the classic Doctor Who is all that is bad about The Doctor. He's supposed to be a regeneration between 12 and 13--one of his last regenerations (by the way, there's supposed to be a limit on how many times Time Lords can regenerate. Whoever set the number didn't think about there being a reboot). This seems the most likely option. The name is even mentioned in the episode.
Who knows? They plan on keeping us in the dark until November when they air the 50th Anniversary special.