On the 1st day of Christmas 2013 … I looked forward to the Doctor Who Christmas Special “The Time of the Doctor”

The Time of the Doctor (image via combom.co.uk (c) BBC)
The Time of the Doctor (image via combom.co.uk (c) BBC)

 

SNAPSHOT
Orbiting a quiet backwater planet, the massed forces of the universe’s deadliest species gather, drawn to a mysterious message that echoes out to the stars.  And amongst them – the Doctor.  Rescuing Clara from a family Christmas dinner, the Time Lord and his best friend must learn what this enigmatic signal means for his own fate and that of the universe.

This is going to be a Doctor Who Christmas special to remember.

For a start, and this is a most important start, Matt Smith is stepping down from the iconic role after three series and seven specials including the record-breaking 50th anniversary special “The Day of the Doctor”.

While initially I found Matt’s take on the Doctor to be a little immature and overly flippant, largely I suspect because I was such a fan of David Tennant in the role and it took me longer than expected to adjust, the man has grown on me and I have come to love his irrepressibly giddy outlook on life, and his ability to switch this Polyanna-ish glee to cold-eyed determination when the situation calls for it.

He is a fine actor who has inhabited the role well and saying goodbye to him, to yet another actor in the role, will be difficult as it always is.

 

Matt Smith as the Eleventh Doctor (Image via bbc.co.uk)
Matt Smith as the Eleventh Doctor (Image via bbc.co.uk)

 

That sadness will be ameliorated somewhat by the Eleventh Doctor regenerating into the Twelfth, played by the talented Peter Capaldi, a lifelong fan and a man more than worthy of stepping into the Time Lord’s sand shoes (yes I know that was David Tennant’s trademark but I did say he was my favourite).

His palpable pleasure at being introduced as the new Doctor in a worldwide telecast four months ago, the sense that he was realising a long held, much treasured dream, was highly enjoyable to watch, lending an unmissable authenticity and humanity to the highly orchestrated event.

That he will excel in the role is pretty much a given given his acting pedigree (The Thick of it, The Hour, In the Loop, Fifth Estate) and according to Charlotte Moore, the BBC One Controller, quoted on entertainmentwise.com, he has already demonstrated how well he will perform in the role:

“[He is] going to be a really fantastic Doctor.

“He’s an extraordinary actor with amazing ability and just watching the first scenes come through… I’m very excited.”

 

 

And of course what would a Doctor Who adventure be without the presence of some truly memorable villains?

In this case, four highly memorable villains – the Daleks, the Cybermen (a severed head of which appears in the official image for the special), The Silence and the Weeping Angels (last seen in “The Angels take Manhattan” in which the Doctor had to bid farewell to Amy and Rory) – all of whom converge with the Doctor on Trenzalore where the tagline repeated through Matt Smith’s time as the Doctor, “Silence will fall”, will find its culmination.

With the re-introduction of Gallifrey and the Time Lords in “The Day of the Doctor”, not destroyed but frozen in an instant of time in their own pocket universe, location unknown, The Time of the Doctor could well see the Twelfth Doctor launch on a whole new mission – to find his home planet and his people and restore them to the universe from which they vanished they so many years before.

Add in how the Doctor will be able to regenerate now he has reached the official 12 regeneration limit – a subject of much conjecture after The Day of the Doctor introduced William Hurt as the War Doctor, a previously unknown incarnation of the venerable Time Lord, and answered by Steve Moffat, the current showrunner at least in part – and you have the makings of one of the best and most important Christmas specials to date.

“The Time of the Doctor” will air on BBC One from 7.30pm on Christmas Day and in Australia on Boxing Day.

 

 

 

Here’s some photos from the Christmas special to whet your appetite (you can see more here and here) …

 

Doctor Who performing some magic for the Daleks? Why not? It's Christmas! (image via cultbox.co.uk)
Doctor Who performing some magic for the Daleks? Why not? It’s Christmas! (image via cultbox.co.uk)

 

Why just look at the Cybermen. All ho-ho-ho-ing and falalala-ing on their way to carols and eggnog ... or NOT (image via cultbox.co.uk (c) BBC)
Why just look at the Cybermen. All ho-ho-ho-ing and falalala-ing on their way to carols and eggnog … or NOT (image via cultbox.co.uk (c) BBC)

 

Tasha Lem, who looks to be a tad liberal with the festive eyeshadow, is a figure from the Doctor's past who joins him on Trenzalore (image via cultbox.co.uk (c) BBC)
Tasha Lem, who looks to be a tad liberal with the festive eyeshadow, is a figure from the Doctor’s past who joins him on Trenzalore (image via cultbox.co.uk (c) BBC)

 

The Doctor steps out on a tree-filled festive scene that looks all prettily lit and ready for some decorating ... odds are it won't stay that way for long (image via cultbux.co.uk (c) BBC)
The Doctor steps out on a tree-filled festive scene that looks all prettily lit and ready for some decorating … odds are it won’t stay that way for long (image via cultbux.co.uk (c) BBC)

 

Short of a wand for your magic show? No problem - a Dalek eye stalk will work in its place just fine. Getting it could be potentially hazardous however (image via cultbox.co.uk (c) BBC)
Short of a wand for your magic show? No problem – a Dalek eye stalk will work in its place just fine. Getting it could be potentially hazardous however (image via cultbox.co.uk (c) BBC)

 

UPDATE 23 December 2013: found this wonderful clip from the upcoming special, courtesy of bbc.co.uk …

 

 

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2 thoughts on “On the 1st day of Christmas 2013 … I looked forward to the Doctor Who Christmas Special “The Time of the Doctor”

  1. This is going to be a Christmas of tears and joy for me, not only are we losing Matt Smith as our Timelord but we are also gaining Peter Capaldi as the next incarnation, Christmas this years is going to fantastic and I locking the doors and disconnecting the phone when it’s on 😉

    1. I hear ya! I just have to convince the in-laws to let me be for an hour from 7.30pm on Christmas Day LOL

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