Tardis:Point of view

From Tardis Wiki, the free Doctor Who reference
We have two types of article: those about narrative elements — like characters, weapons and species — and those about production elements — actors, directors and stories. Each type requires a particular approach.

Unlike Wikipedia we write our articles from two different perspectives.

In-universe perspective

Articles about narrative elements — also called "in-universe articles" — are written as if the topic were real, but one that no longer exists. For this reason, they are written in the past tense.

Examples of in-universe articles include Amy Pond, Gallifrey, London, 2000, March and so forth. Note that even if the subject exists in the real world, like 2000, we still primarily write about it in an in-universe way. Doing so allows us to stress the importance of 2000 to the DWU. When we do so, we discover that the DWU has different characteristics to the real world.

Generally, in-universe articles have two distinct parts. The majority of the article — what we frequently refer to as the "body" — is written from this in-universe article. But these articles can have a section called "behind the scenes". This part of the article — which is always the last major section — is written from a "real world perspective". Read more ...

Out-of-universe perspective

Articles about out-of-universe things are also called "real world articles". Generally, these, too, should be written in the past tense, in order to minimise the amount of editing that has to be done on the article in the future. However, there are some instances in which the present tense may be warranted. Read more...


The difference between an in-universe and out of universe perspective is immediately apparent from the first sentence of our article about the Doctor as compared with Wikipedia's article:

In-universe Out-of-universe
"The Doctor" was the primary alias of a renegade Time Lord from Gallifrey who journeyed through time and space with various companions in his obsolete and "borrowed" Type 40 TARDIS. The Doctor is a title character and the protagonist of the long-running BBC television science fiction series Doctor Who, and has also featured in two cinema feature films and one made-for-television movie, as well as a vast range of spin-off novels, audio dramas and comic strips connected to the series.

Note how the in-universe perspective allows the opportunity to declare what "the Doctor" actually is. It's not a character, not a person, but, in fact, an alias. That's something you can only easily note if you're writing as if the DWU is a "reality".

Conversely, the out-of-universe perspective affords a chance to note the real world significance of the "the Doctor" — which is that he is the central character of a multi-media franchise.