This Christmas, the world holds its breath to see just how master writer Steven Moffat intends to get around the tricky issue of regeneration, get rid of Matt Smith, and introduce the new Doctor, Peter Capaldi of The Thick Of It fame.
The Christmas episode, which will be named “The Time Of The Doctor,” will be the final part of a loose trilogy, kicked off by “The Name Of The Doctor,” which was the final episode of the last season, and the 50th Anniversary “The Day Of The Doctor,” which was viewed by an average of 10.2 million viewers. It will also be the 800th individual episode of Dr Who, a franchise so popular that fans play Dr Who daily games, create elaborate costumes, and wait hours for the chance to meet its stars. And you can get more details of the Doctor Who Extravaganza here.
So what do we know about Christmas episode? A promotional photo has been released showing Matt Smith’s Doctor holding the head of a Cyberman, backed by Jenna Coleman in a party hat and Christmas cracker and with three members of The Silence hovering in the misty background. Trailers for the show have revealed that Cybermen and The Silence will be joined by the Daleks and the utterly terrifying Weeping Angels, who have haunted both David Tennant’s and Matt Smith’s characters. We know that the villains will be meeting on Trenzalore, the planet that the Doctor has always known would be the place of his death.
The Regeneration Problem
A real issue for the end of this storyline is in the regeneration. It’s been an established fact of the franchise for a long time that the Doctor has a limited of twelve regenerations, meaning that he would die after his thirteen incarnation. Although most fans thought that Matt Smith counted as the eleventh, it appears that David Tennant’s extra regeneration to save his life added to the number, and bringing John Hurt in as The War Doctor in the 50th Anniversary special pushed Matt Smith up to number thirteen. But we already know that Peter Capaldi will be taking on the role next year, so the question is how to solve the regeneration problem. However they do it, it is anticipated to be one of the most thrilling moments in the show’s entire history.
The movie-length 50th Anniversary episode only helped to whet the appetites of fans, who eagerly await the coming of the Christmas episode, which is promised to tie up a lot of questions that Matt Smith’s incarnation has raised. Jenna Coleman, who plays Clara, has commented about the show that it was “brutal” and “traumatic” to film, and by the end of the episode…Silence will fall.
The Christmas episode of Doctor Who airs on BBC America on December 25 at 9/8c. The premiere date of the new season has yet to be announced.