Who is the Valeyard?
In 1986 we got a Doctor Who story unofficially titled "The Ultimate foe" where the Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) was, yet again, put to trial by the Time Lords. The mysterious Valeyard tries to convince the jury at the trial that The Doctor is an evil and dangerous person who should be sentenced as guilty. It is later revealed that The Valeyard is apparently an evil version of The Doctor himself, who was created somewhere between his twelfth and final incarnation whilst The Thirteenth Doctor tried to push the boundaries of only having twelve regenerations. Or so The Valeyard claimed...
So, have we already seen more of The Valeyard apart from the 1986 story?
Well, there have been quite a few other stories of the Valeyard, but they have only been in Audio, Radio and Novel form. Not everyone thinks they are cannon, so I won't delve into those. But it may be possible that we have seen The Valeyard in the TV Show since, or even before!
As mentioned before, The Valeyard claimed to have been created when the Thirteenth Doctor experimented in trying to get more regenerations than the twelve. So, is it safe for me to assume that he may have been created in "The Time of The Doctor" when the Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) was granted a new cycle of regenerations by the Time Lords.
Because, if we remember, with the introduction of 'The War Doctor' (John Hurt) in "The Day of The Doctor", it became apparent that The Ninth Doctor (Christopher Eccleston) is actually The Tenth, making The Tenth (David Tennent) The Eleventh and because The Tenth Doctor regenerated, but kept his incarnation, that makes him The Twelfth Doctor meaning that The Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) is ACTUALLY The Thirteenth Doctor. Are you with me so far?
So! If this event created The Valeyard and we didn't see him at that moment, it could mean that The Valeyard instantly traveled in time, by accident or on purpose. Clearly he traveled in time to meet The Sixth Doctor, so where else could he have traveled?
Who else could The Valeyard have been?
In 1967 we had a story called "The Enemy of The World" where The Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton) encountered the evil world leader called Salamander who looks, for an unexplained reason, EXACTLY like The Doctor.
I bet you a gazillion British pounds that, somewhere on the internet there's a fan theory claiming that The Master is The Valeyard! In the 1986 story The Master does work very closely with The Valeyard against The Doctor. And knowing Steven Moffat, he'll probably reveal that The Master is The Valeyard in some throwaway comment during an interview so he doesn't have to deal with it. Or... He could say something much worse...
Why can't The Valeyard be The Curator? Why the hell not?! I mean, The Curator clearly states that he's a future incarnation of the Doctor that comes about between the twelfth and final incarnation. We've had an evil Second Doctor, why not an evil Fourth? Why the hell not?! Doctor Who's so ridiculously complicated anyway! That, again, would be a very Moffat thing to do!
But does the Valeyard have to have come from the events of "The Time of The Doctor"?
Valid question! And no! He doesn't! In the 1986 story, The Valeyard claimed that he's a version between The Twelfth and the Final incarnation of The Doctor after the The Thirteenth Doctor experimented in expanding his regeneration limit. The Valeyard doesn't have to know the specific way he was created, especially if he was flung through time the moment he was. It may have been a total accident. Also he may not know the difference between Doctor, Incarnation and life. For example, Peter Capaldi is the Twelfth Doctor, The Thirteenth Incarnation but also the Fourteenth life depending on the way you look at it. So the Valeyard could have been created as early as The Tenth Doctor (David Tennant).
What other events could have caused The Valeyard's creation?
The experimenting The Valeyard references to could totally be a misinterpretation of The Doctor accidentally creating a new version of himself. As The Valeyard could have been created during David Tennant's reign, it is possible that The Meta-Crisis Doctor from "Journey's End" could be the Valeyard. There's a great MoviePilot article on the theory that you can find HERE.
Or even The Next Doctor (David Morissey) from "The Next Doctor". I know he's not evil, but neither is The Meta-Crisis Doctor initially. Yes, this Doctor is only human who has The Doctor's memories, but this is Doctor Who! This is Sci-Fi! Anything can happen!
Going with the theory that The Valeyard was created from The Doctor accidentally making a version of himself, then why couldn't The Doppelgänger Doctor from "The Almost People/ Rebel Flesh" be The Valeyard? We did seen The Doppelgänger turn into sludge, but he still may not have died!
And of course, the most common theory is that The Valeyard is The Dream Lord. The Dream Lord was never actually died, he was a clump of 'psychic dust' which has a lot of potential! Maybe the entire 1986 storyline was a dream! It is full of illusions and visions and stuff!
And more recently there's a lot of theories that The Valeyard is The War Doctor, which is proven wrong, obviously, but this Doctor was around during the Time War, that was when time was the most wibbly-wobbly! Anything could happen!
Look, I don't really support any of these theories, apart from that The Valeyard was created during the events of "The Time Of The Doctor" and went straight back in time to meet The Sixth Doctor. The Valeyard could have been created any time during The Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) and The Thirteenth Doctor (Unknown yet), depending on how you want to number The Doctors and how you would define a "regeneration" and an "incarnation" which is for up for debate and less straight forward than you think.
The Valeyard could reveal himself at any moment if he already hasn't. One day Moffat may reveal that one of the theories above is correct or we could see The Valeyard sometime in the future. I personally don't want a throwaway comment in an interview or in the show or some vague, complicated theory that Moffat has come up with. Personally I feel a lot of Moffat's stories are so complicated but explained so poorly, but maybe that's another article for another day.
But I don't know! Nobody knows! Maybe this article was completely pointless! Maybe it was informative and thought provoking or maybe it was a complete waist of your time! I don't care! I enjoyed writing it and expressing my thoughts! And because I'm self-centred, that's all that matters :)