Christmas Special Moves to New Year's DayBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 14 November 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who - Series 11 (Credit: BBC / Ben Blackall)Doctor Who Magazine has confirmed that this year's Christmas Special of Doctor Who will be shown on New Year's Day 2019.

The change is a radical change for the series which has been part of the Christmas Day schedule since the series returned in 2005. The series peaked in 2007 when Kylie Minogue joined the Tenth Doctor in Voyage of the Damned watched by 13.3 million viewers. Last year's Christmas special, Twice Upon A Time, marking the departure of Peter Capaldi as The Doctor, was watched by 7.92 million.

The episode to be shown on New Year's Day will mark the end of Jodie Whittaker's first season as The Doctor. The last episode to be shown on New Year's Day was the second part of The End of Time in 2010 where it had 12.27 million viewers.




Twice Upon A Time: Official RatingBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 3 January 2018 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))
Doctor Who: Twice Upon A Time had a 7-Day official rating of 7.92 million viewers.

The rating includes those who recorded the programme and watched it within 7 days. The final rating is an increase of over 2.2 million on the initially reported figure. It makes Twice Upon a Time the highest rated episode of Doctor Who since the 2014 Christmas episode Last Christmas.

An additional 600,000 viewers have accessed the episode on the BBC iPlayer so far.

Doctor Who was the 6th highest rated show on Christmas Day. Top for the day was the Drama Call The Midwife with 9.57 million watching, just ahead of Mrs Browns Boys with 9.04 million. The Queen's Christmas Message had 8.18 million viewers across BBC One and ITV1. The highest rated show on ITV1 was Coronation Street with 6.99 million.

A chart placing for the whole week will be available next Monday.

In 2017 Doctor Who had an average rating of 5.64 million viewers, compared with 6.16 million for the 2015 series.





Australian overnight ratings for Twice Upon A TimeBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 27 December 2017 - Reported by Adam Kirk
Twice Upon A Time averaged 378,000 viewers in the five major Australian capital cities. It was ABC TV's highest rating drama of the day and the nineteenth highest rating program of the day overall (The Ashes and Big Bash cricket, the Sydney to Hobart yacht race, news and current affairs programs taking 14 of the top 20 rating programs on Boxing Day). These ratings do not include regional or time-shifted viewers.

Media Links: TV Tonight




Twice Upon A Time - AI:81Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, 27 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Doctor Who: Twice Upon A Time had an Audience Appreciation or AI score of 81.

The Appreciation Index or AI is a measure of how much the audience enjoyed the programme. The score, out of a hundred, is compiled by a specially selected panel of around 5,000 people who go online and rate and comment on programmes.

The score is similiar to that received by last year's Christmas Special The Return of Doctor Mysterio which scored 82.

The highest score of the evening was shared by Call the Midwife on BBC One, Paul O'Grady: For the Love of Dogs at Christmas on ITV1 and Victoria on ITV1 all of which scored 88. The highest rated show of the day, Mrs Brown's Boys, had an AI of 83.




Twice Upon A Time - Press ReactionBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 26 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie), The First Doctor (David Bradley), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Press reaction to the final Twelfth Doctor story Twice Upon A Time is in and generally positive.

The Guardian found much to admire in the story "There’s so much that is good about the episode. Good jokes – mainly about the First Doctor’s embarrassing un-PC old-fashioned attitudes (“Aren’t all ladies made of glass, in a way?”). I like the second world war spoiler too. “Yes, but what do you mean, [world war] one?” asks the Captain, not understanding the unthinkable. I like Twelve’s “over to you Mary Berry” to One, just because he’s old, I think. Anyway, it’s funny."

The Mirror felt the episode delivered. "It's an emotional rollercoaster to watch and the minute's whizz by so fast, too fast. I felt the ticking clock in my living room was ticking a little louder, counting down to the moment we had to say goodbye to Capaldi's Doctor. I'm so glad that the Powers That Be decided to bring Pearl Mackie's Bill back to the show for one more outing. In an episode that can't really escape from a looming theme of death, Bill brings not only a sense of fun but also heart to the episode."

However, The Telegraph wasn't impressed. "Heavy on stagy dialogue and light on action, the narrative got mired in its own mythology, too busy making knowingly nerdy references to construct a coherent adventure. Ultimately, even the hero admitted there wasn’t a villain."

The Daily Mail found the episode wretchedly dull. "We had to endure an age of Capaldi wringing his hands and begging humanity to ‘be kind’. David Bradley reprised the First Doctor, originally portrayed by William Hartnell in the Sixties. His chief role was to make scandalising remarks about the importance of having a woman about the place to do the dusting, and to look horrified when Bill Potts (Pearl Mackie) hinted she was a lesbian."

Radio Times felt the story was lacking substance but praised the nostalgia inherent in the story. "I get a little surge of joy that on Christmas Day 2017 the BBC1 audience will glimpse clips from 1966’s The Tenth Planet of William Hartnell and Michael Craze, both long dead, and my very alive pal Anneke Wills. The lamentable recast versions of companions Ben and Polly are kept mercifully brief, but in a coup of televisual magic a monochrome Hartnell transmogrifies into Bradley in HD colour. The first Doctor rematerialises right before our eyes."

The Independent praised the two lead actors. "Peter Capaldi, as ever, turns out an incredible performance as the Twelfth Doctor. In fact, you wouldn’t expect anything less given that his entire run as the Time Lord has been nothing short of magnificent. Unfortunately, given that this is his Doctor’s finale, David Bradley steals the show as the First Doctor. "

Digital Spy felt the episode delivered where it needed to, also praising David Bradley's portrayal of the First Doctor. "His performance really is spot on – a little spiky, pompous, yet warm and humane. Bradley puts his own stamp on the first Doctor, while remaining enough like his predecessor William Hartnell to soothe the Whovian hardcore. You're left hungry for more – for a story where Bradley's first Doctor is more than a distraction from the main event."

Den of Geek felt the acting plaudits belonged to one of the guest stars. "I can’t overstate just what superb work Mark Gatiss does too, as The Captain. Even before the moving revelation as to who his character really is comes out (maybe it’s Christmas, that that gave me a very warm punch), Gatiss’ quiet, diligent, matter-of-fact performance was tinged with a melancholy edge. Appreciating he had to do some of the ‘what are you talking about’ dialogue to the Doctors, I thought he played it superbly. Polite, baffled, and quietly curious."

AV Club felt the episode was a fitting tribute to the Twelfth Doctor. "This is a thoughtful, funny, incredibly moving episode about kindness, bravery, and the way small choices can make a huge impact. It allows Moffat to reflect on Doctor Who as an entire 54-year series while also serving as a more specific tribute to the 12th Doctor. And it gives Peter Capaldi a beautiful final showcase that demonstrates just how much he’s grown into the role since his rather ominous beginnings back in season eight."

Some felt the regeneration was too drawn out inculding IndieWire "The tradition of the Doctor pushing back against his regeneration is a recent one, and it makes for a prolonged and unnecessary goodbye. Regenerations are at their best when we’re tricked into forgetting they’re coming, like Eccleston’s magnificent and premature departure in 2005’s “The Parting of the Ways.” So having David Tennant, then Matt Smith and now Capaldi each deliver a drawn-out Christmas special swan song feels like three wasted episodes."

iNews praised the writing of Steven Moffat's last story. "The sharply-written interplay between both Doctors, in fact – and later Bill – was one of the joys of this episode. “Atmospheric? (It’s like) a restaurant for the French,” sneered Bradley’s First, gazing around the Twelfth’s hugely modified control room. “I thought I’d become… younger,” the earlier incarnation mused, gazing worriedly at his older self."

Finally Inverse found the episode a fitting final appearance for the twelfth Doctor. "“Kind” is the defining word for the 12th Doctor. It’s what moves him at the Christmas Armistice in Ypres, and it’s part of his final advice to his next self. That the incarnation who began his existence so prickly and aloof would end it as the champion of kindness speaks to just how much this Doctor grew and developed over this three seasons."

The Doctor Who News review can be found on our reviews site.




Twice Upon A time - Overnight Viewing FiguresBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 26 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who - Twice Upon A Time had an audience of 5.66 million viewers, according to unofficial overnight viewing figures, a share of 29.1% of the total television audience.



The figure is almost identical to that received by last year's Doctor Who Christmas Special, which had 5.68 million watching.

Top for the day was Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas Special with 6.80 million viewers. The Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special had 6.46 million watching compared to 7.2 million last year.

BBC One outrated ITV 1 from midday to midnight with Coronation Street the only programme on the channel to break 5 million viewers with 5.07 million watching. Victoria the drama starring Jenna Coleman had 2.74 million watching.

HM The Queen's Christmas Message had 5.26 million watching on BBC One and 1.87 million on ITV 1.

Official ratings, including those who recorded te show and watched it later, will be published in two weeks time.




Christmas with the Doctor (Predict the Ratings)Bookmark and Share

Monday, 18 December 2017 - Reported by Chuck Foster
Peter Capaldi as the Doctor, Twice Upon A Time (Credit: BBC)This year sees Doctor Who premiere at 5:30pm on BBC1, with competition for the time slot coming in the form of Emmerdale on ITV and The Morecambe and Wise 1977 Christmas Show on BBC2: if you feel a little deja-vu it's understandable as these were up against Doctor Who last year - and Channel 4 is even showing the same film, Home Alone, on Channel 4!

In fact, looking at this year's Christmas line-up in the evening, you might think you are watching last year, as there is little difference between this year's and last year's offerings on the main two UK channels - both BBC1 and ITV's evening line-up is nigh-on identical apart from broadcast time, with just the 9:00pm ITV drama slot being Jenna Coleman's Victoria this time around.

The bookies' favourite is also familiar, with Strictly Come Dancing once again taking the top slot; however, second place belongs firmly to the departure of Peter Capaldi, with Doctor Who at 4/1. Bake Off is also in the 'mix', though this time at prime-time on Channel 4.

            BBC1                        ITV                           Channel 4
3:00 24/1 The Queen
3:10 66/1 Cinderella 66/1 The Prisoner of Azkaban
4:45 50/1 The Highway Rat
5:50 25/1 Emmerdale
5:15 BBC News
5:30 4/1 Doctor Who
6:30 3/4 Strictly Come Dancing
6:50 ITV News
7:00 12/1 For The Love of Dogs
7:40 6/1 Call The Midwife 20/1 The Great Christmas Bake Off
8:00 21/1 Coronation Street
9:00 14/1 Eastenders 12/1 Victoria
10:00 7/1 Mrs Brown's Boys
10:35 33/1 French and Saunders

Predict The Ratings Competition


With Christmas just around the corner it can mean only one (other) thing - it's time for our annual Predict the Ratings competition! This year readers have the chance to win the latest series of adventures featuring the Doctor, Pearl and Nardole, and culminating in two Doctors' final swansongs!

As always, the aim is to predict the final consolidated viewing figure for Twice Upon A Time as reported by BARB, to the nearest 10,000 viewers (i.e. two decimal places). In addition, we'd like you to predict Doctor Who's position in the weekly chart (which will be used in the case of a tie-break).



The ratings and positions for 2015 and 2016 are presented here for comparison - recent years have seen a decline in television viewing over Christmas Day across all channels, with none of the programmes achieving the heady heights of several years ago.

To enter our competition, please send the following details to comp-xmasratings@doctorwhonews.net:
  • Your name and preferred email address
  • Your country of entry (full details will be requested only if you are the winner)
  • Your guess at the final viewing figure to the nearest 10,000 (eg.9.99m)
  • Your guess at the final position in the chart (eg. 1st) - this will only be used in the event of a tie-break
Terms and Conditions:
  • The competition closes at 08:00 GMT, 26th December 2017.
  • Only one entry will be accepted per person.
  • The competition is open worldwide.
  • BARB final figures are expected in early 2018 we will contact the winner once they have been published
  • The prize is a copy of The Complete Tenth Series and Twice Upon A Time releases on DVD or Bluray; we will confirm the format with the winner at time of notification.

Twice Around The World


Doctor Who has its debut in the United Kingdom on BBC1 at 5:30pm ... but will also be seen in the Middle East at the same time as, with previous years, BBC First simulcast the episode. This will be closely followed by ABC in Australia making it available online via iView immediately after its UK broadcast, and will then be shown in Australian cinemas in the afternoon (01:00 GMT). North America get to see it next, with both BBC America in the United States and SPACE in Canada showing the episode at 9:00pm EST (02:00 GMT).

Boxing Day broadcasts include Prime in New Zealand and ABC in Australia at 7:30pm local time (06:30 and 08:30 GMT respectively), and in the afternoon the episode will be shown on the big screen in Denmark. Viewers in Finland will be able to watch Twice Upon A Time on YLE2 in the evening on the Wednesday, and a British signed version airs in the early hours of Saturday morning on BBC2.

Heading into the new year, and FOX in Germany will be showing the episode dubbed into German on the 10th January, and Sony SciFi in Russia will show it on the 13th. It is expected that RAI4 in Italy and France4 in France will broadcast it in their native languages later in the Spring.

You can keep up with Doctor Who around the world via This Week in Doctor Who




Twice Upon A Time - Media PackBookmark and Share

Monday, 18 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon A TimeWith just one week to go until the world gets to see the final moments of the Twelfth Doctor in Twice Upon A Time, the BBC has released a wealth of promotional material, including interviews with the main cast.

The final chapter of the Peter Capaldi's Twelfth Doctor’s journey sees the Time Lord team up with his former self, the first ever Doctor (David Bradley and a returning Bill Potts (Pearl Mackie), for one last adventure.

Two Doctors stranded in an arctic snowscape, refusing to face regeneration.

Enchanted Glass People, stealing their victims from frozen time.

And a World War One Captain destined to die on the battlefield, but taken from the trenches to play his part in the Doctor's story.

An uplifting new tale about the power of hope in humanity’s darkest hours, Twice Upon A Time marks the end of an era. But as the Doctor must face his past to decide his future, his journey is only just beginning...

Twice Upon A Time is written by Steven Moffat, directed by Rachel Talalay, and executive produced by Brian Minchin. The 60-minute special guest stars Mark Gatiss as The Captain and Nikki Amuka-Bird as the voice of the glass woman, and will see Peter Capaldi’s Doctor regenerate into the Thirteenth Doctor (Jodie Whittaker).
A message from Peter Capaldi

Doctor Who has taken me on an amazing journey. Now that it’s coming to an end, I wish the Doctor all the very best for the future, and the past, and everything in-between. Time I was off.
Peter Capaldi On Filming His Regeneration Episode

An interview with David Bradley

Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))How did you get the call?

Well it all started with An Adventure in Space and Time (the 2013 biopic about the start of Doctor Who) a few years ago. Mark Gatiss who wrote that tapped me on the shoulder one day at an event in London and asked me to play Hartnell in that, and I was absolutely thrilled. I said yes even before I’d seen a script! Doing that was a great experience but most of it was getting under the skin of this amazing actor and quite complicated man which Mark’s script captured beautifully I thought.

After that wrapped I thought “Well, I’ve done it now. That’s my Doctor Who adventure over” I’d sort of been the Doctor, but I couldn’t join the pantheon or lay any claim to being 'a Doctor Who'. And I never thought for a moment there was any reason for the First Doctor to come back to the main series - but it turns out there really was, because what a great story we’ve got in store for you! And the fact that it’s not only Steven’s last gig but Peter’s last performance as the Doctor, combined with the fact it’s the Christmas episode, means that it doesn’t get any better really.

What’s it like playing the First Doctor?

From my previous role as Hartnell playing the Doctor I was already familiar with that way he would look at someone uneasily - his head tilted back and to one side - with the “Do I believe you or not?” quizzical, searching look that he gives people across his face. And of course his authoritative pose with his hands on his lapels, which makes him feel in charge of things. Though of course sometimes he doesn’t, because he’s a mixture of authority and vulnerability. And together with the humour, that’s where the humanity lies. He’s got so many different aspects to his personality.

Were there any sets or locations that you particularly enjoyed working on?

Oh just all of it! Visually, I cannot wait to see the finished episode. Every set was so well crafted with real detail, so many playgrounds for the First Doctor to explore. It’s as big in scale and production values as anything I’ve ever done before.

How would you describe the tone of this episode?

I think the message is that if there’s life, there’s hope - just keep going!

How did it feel to be part of Peter Capaldi’s final episode at the Doctor?

I really did realise that this particular episode was a big event. Not that there was any pressure on the studio floor, but it was clear that it’s going to be a celebration of all the great work Peter has done over the last three years, and that Steven had done over the last decade or so, meaning it felt special in the sense. As well as being special because it’s this year’s big Christmas episode too!

How does the First Doctor look at the Twelfth Doctor?

I think he views the Twelfth as junior to him and his Doctorship! He thinks this new man claiming to be the Doctor has a lot to learn - he quizzes and questions him a lot on the decisions he makes and why he throws himself into certain situations. I think the First Doctor really wonders if the Twelfth has got the experience and the nous to carry him through his adventures and dangerous situations. But across he soon comes to realise that the Twelfth Doctor is himself as well, so he’s got to acknowledge that this figure who stands before him is who he becomes in the future. Which leads to a whole set of other questions, of course.

Can you explain the enduring appeal of Doctor Who?

I think it’s the fact that it takes place in so many different eras and places - the possible stories are limitless! The TARDIS can go anywhere - it can go back to ancient Rome, it can go to a World War One battlefield as it does in this episode, it and go a million years into the future at the other side of the galaxy. And of course the idea of time travel is such a fascinating and appealing one. Even now scientists are arguing if time travel is even possible. So many want it to be true.


An interview with Mark Gatiss

Twice Upon a Time: The Captain (Mark Gatiss) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))What have we got to look forward to in this episode?

This is not just a Christmas special, it’s also the end of Steven Moffat’s era and the end of Peter Capaldi’s era. It’s got two Doctors interacting, two TARDISes, Bill is back, and there’s a very interesting new threat. Plus there’s lots of snow, lots of laughs and lots of tears and - not only that - we get to meet the Thirteenth Doctor. Lucky for some!

How did you get the casting call?

It happened very touchingly a couple of months ago. We were at a script meeting for the series ten episode I’d written, Empress of Mars, when Steven took me aside and said “I know you get booked up quickly so will you keep June and July free?” I said yes straight away, and then asked why! He said “I’m writing a part you’d be perfect for in Peter’s last story, and I want you to be there when I go”. Which is a Doctorish line in itself and made me well up.

It’s my privilege and pleasure to be involved. It was honestly one of the happiest jobs I’ve ever had. It’s been utterly delightful with Peter, Pearl and David. Though dealing with epic themes it’s actually quite a contained, intimate story on one level - in some ways a chamber piece. We’ve had a really good laugh. It’s been delightful.

You’ve been involved with Doctor Who since it came back in 2005. What was it like to finally get to travel with the doctor?

It was heaven - I got to do it all! At one point I even come through the TARDIS doors and say in amazement “it’s bigger on the inside than it is on the outside!”. All these things I’ve always wanted to do! I did have to ask myself how I would cope with experiencing that, and actually I made sure that my character didn’t get used to it too quickly. I wanted to make sure you get a sense - which is in the script - of The Captain being overwhelmed by it all and really shocked, rather than just taking it in his stride. But at the same time he is a soldier, so he reacts to certain other situations in quite a straight forward way.

Were there any sets or locations that you particularly enjoyed working on?

I play a Captain from the First World War so there is a trench and battlefield element, which we filmed on location across a number of fields. We had one hundred extras playing German, French and British soldiers and it was really very moving to be part of. Something about the sheer amount of people in these splendid uniforms. The weather was quite drizzly, but it suited the story and it got very muddy, which of course it really would have been. There was an incredible moment when all these extras swarmed over the battlefield - at which point everyone on set was tearing up. It was moving and extraordinary to be a part of.

How would you describe the tone of this episode?

It’s a very funny and very lovely story. It’s perfect for Christmas as - for me at least - I feel that Christmas is always a mixture of happy and sad. It’s Peter’s last story and it’s obviously infused with that, but it’s a story that takes place out of time, where he has one last adventure before he goes and regenerates into the Thirteenth Doctor. And I suppose it’s about that - it’s about letting go.

The Twelfth Doctor’s encounter with the First Doctor is the central part of the story, with all the lessons that he learns from that.

How did you feel to be part of Peter’s final episode?

I know that Peter really just wanted to enjoy his last adventure. I’m sure that as he got to the last few days the sense of finality will have sunk in - you know, “that’s the last time on location, that’s the last time I’ll run down a corridor, that’s the last time I fight a monster…” etcetera, but it was a really joyous shoot to be a part of. With my old Doctor Who fan head on - Worzel Gummage style - to be a part of any Doctor’s final adventure was incredible, but particularly for Peter who I think has been magnificent. It’s the end of so many eras and you couldn’t help but feel that. It was a real pleasure.

Why should we tune in to Twice Upon A Time?

There’s always something magical about being on Christmas Day, and I think Doctor Who itself has a magic to it. Somewhere deep in its bones there’s something brilliant about this show, and the combination of the two things gives you that shiver. It’s a wonderful thing to be there as a Christmas Day treat. This episode, as it’s the end of an era, has that. Christmas is an interesting time too. There’s something special about it, something in the frosty air that always feels like it’s a good time for ghost stories or stories of enchantment; it’s happy but bittersweet. That’s what this ep has in spades.


An interview with Pearl Mackie

Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))What have we got to look forward to in this episode?

There’s so much! We’ve got not one but two TARDISes, and we travel in both of them which is pretty exciting. We’ve also got three Doctors - that’s pretty amazing. Obviously we’ve got the current Doctor who we all know and love, but we’ve also got the First Doctor played by David Bradley - who is phenomenal. The current Doctor, who’s dying but refusing to regenerate at the start of the story, meets him as a way of dealing with his current struggles. The interaction between those two is great - really funny, but also surprising and very moving in places. And of course there’s also the regeneration, when the Twelfth Doctor becomes the Thirteenth Doctor!

Were you excited to get the call asking you back?

Very much so - it was a total honour to be asked back and it’s even more exciting that it’s for a Christmas special! Bill is 100% back with the full Bill energy, but she’s not quite all she seems...

What else can you tell us about the episode?

We also have a new monster - a lady who’s made of glass, but you’ll have to tune in to find out what she’s up to. We’ve also got some old foes returning, to make Christmas even more exciting!

Were there any sets or locations that you particularly enjoyed working on?

It was very exciting to be on the set of the first Doctor’s TARDIS. It wasn’t something I was that familiar with, but great to get acclimatised on. And apparently there were lots of props that were actually used in the original TARDIS that were used in our set too, so it really does look and feel like the real deal from the first series of Doctor Who over fifty years ago. Some of the ice sets were really cool too, plus the huge battlefield which features during some key moments of the episode.

Why should we watch?

One of the amazing things about Doctor Who is that it’s sci-fi, but it has that humanity to it. It has human relationships and interactions, with the added excitement of the monsters, the amazing sets and the wonders of exploring all of time and space. This episode has all of that in a really big accessible adventure for all ages - plus the regeneration!


An interview with Steven Moffat

Steven MoffatWhat does Twice Upon A Time have in store for us?

There are some new eerie creatures of glass haunting the Doctor and his friends throughout this story - but what their purpose and what their plan is, and what their time traveling machinations are, is going to be a big surprise to the Doctor.

Were there any sets or locations that you particularly enjoyed working on?

There’s a real range of spaces that we visit across the special. We have the inside of a giant stone spaceship full of creepy glass creatures. We’re in the first Doctor’s TARDIS - recreated and brought back from the 1960s to stand proud in the Welsh studios. We’re on a First World War battlefield. And at long last we go to a location that I mentioned in my very first episode of Doctor Who back in 2005, as we visit the ruins of Villengard.

How would you describe the tone of this episode?

This episode is somewhere between a coda and drumroll. It’s a coda to the time of the Twelfth Doctor played by Peter Capaldi, and a drumroll to usher in the Thirteenth Doctor, played by Jodie Whittaker. Approaching it, one issue I had was that The Doctor Falls (this year’s series finale) was the end of Peter Capaldi’s Doctor. That episode saw the Twelfth Doctor stating what he stands for and standing on the hill on which he was prepared to die.

That was the end of his story. But - as often happens in stories and real life - it didn’t end there. He kept going, he started to regenerate, so at Christmas what we’re going to see is a man weary and tired and, having made his point and having made his stand and given his life for something that matters, he has to learn just how to carry on after that. But of course this being Doctor Who and Christmas it’s much warmer and hopeful than that, so in perfect timing walking towards him out of the snow he meets earliest incarnation. The William Hartnell version of the Doctor - played now by David Bradley in an astonishing performance - and the two of them are about to regenerate. Tonally it’s about saying “to hell with dying, let’s get on with living”. And what’s more Christmassy that that? It’s the turn of the year, a time for new beginnings, it’s the time when we start climbing back towards the light.

How does the First Doctor look at the Twelfth Doctor?

Well the Doctor never gets on with himself. Arguably he doesn’t get on with himself when it’s just him alone - we had the whole plot of Heaven Sent (in series nine) about that - so he doesn’t get on with himself even when it’s just him. But here I think we have perhaps one of the most interesting instances of the Doctors meeting, because the First Doctor as we know from the show is quite different from the Doctor we know now.

Ultimately he’s the same person - he has the same set of impulses and ideals - but he hasn’t yet become at home with what he’s becoming. If you look at the original William Hartnell series, the Doctor’s starting to fight the good fight, but he’ll arrive in a spot of trouble and generally speaking he’ll only help others out because he needs to get back to the TARDIS. So often there’d be a plot contrivance to stop William Hartnell’s Doctor getting back to his TARDIS and flying out of danger. Slowly that started changing as the Doctor developed as a character. He’d start saying “No I can’t leave yet - not because I can’t get to the TARDIS, but because these people are still in trouble and this evil is still in control. I have to help these people.”

Without noticing it, or it ever being his plan or his intent, he’s starting to engage with the universe and he’d be horrified to think that he’s starting to become its protector. Now, at the end of that lifetime when the First Doctor is facing his end, he doesn’t yet realise that’s what he already is. He’s already the man who rides to the rescue, the saviour of the oppressed, but he doesn’t own up to that. Now he meets the Twelfth doctor, and the Twelfth doctor has been doing this for so long. He’s used to the idea that he’s already Earth’s protector - an idea that completely bewilders his younger - except kind of older self. The thing to focus on this time, alongside the flourishes that distinguish the two doctors - it that they are at very different moments in their lives. The First Doctor is not quite yet the hero we are used to.

How did you feel to be writing your final episode of Doctor Who?

The truth about writing anything is that it’s always difficult. You can change the reason why it’s difficult, but the fact is it’s just always difficult! Throughout writing this I wanted to feel more about the fact it’s the last one I’ll ever write, and I wanted to feel more about it’s the last one Peter will ever play, but the truth is that the technicality and the difficulty and the demands on your creativity - all that overwhelms you to the point where you’re just trying to write a great Doctor Who story! That’s enough to contend with - you can’t have the real life drama of two old Scotsmen making their way to the door.

Once we got into shooting it, however, and especially when we approached filming Peter’s last moments as the Doctor which were done at the end of the shoot, we did talk more about how exactly he should meet his end. We were both very pleased with that final section of the script already, but as we went through piece by piece we thought there were ways to improve it so I’d be banging out new pages each night for us to discuss on set each day. That was so enjoyable and exciting to do - to really feel that we were getting his send off right - that in a way it took whatever emotions we were both having about leaving and put them on screen where they belong. By the time we got to that part of filming I think Peter and I were probably the least emotional on set because we’d put it all in the show!


The episode premieres in the UK on BBC One on Christmas Day at 5.30pm, followed by transmission around the world. Full details here




Twice Upon A Time - New ClipBookmark and Share

Sunday, 17 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
The BBC has released a new clip from this year's Christmas Special, Twice Upon A Time

Escaping in the First Doctor's TARDIS




Doctor Who Magazine Issue 520Bookmark and Share

Thursday, 14 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Doctor Who Magazine Issue 520 (Credit: Panini)
Issue 520 of Doctor Who Magazine includes a free Thirteenth Doctor poster/Twelfth Foctor wallchart and a revealing preview of the Christmas special.

Also in this issue...
  • PEARL MACKIE
  • Pearl talks to DWM about saying goodbye to companion Bill Potts.
  • MARK GATISS
  • An interview with Mark Gatiss, who plays the Captain in the 2017 Christmas Special.
  • STEVEN MOFFAT
  • Doctor Who’s outgoing showrunner previews his final story, Twice Upon a Time.
  • EARL CAMERON
  • Actor Earl Cameron – 100 years old this year! – recalls playing astronaut Glyn Williams in the 1966 story The Tenth Planet.
  • PHILIP HINCHCLIFFE
  • The legendary Doctor Who producer explains how the series’ feature-length omnibus repeats were created in the 1970s.
  • PADDY RUSSELL
  • A tribute to the late Paddy Russell, Doctor Who’s first female director and one of British television’s pioneers.
  • INSIDE SHADA
  • The team behind the new version of Shada reveal how Douglas Adams’ ‘lost’ 1979 story was finally completed.
  • DANIEL HILL AND OLIVIA BAZALGETTE
  • Actor Daniel Hill and production assistant Olivia Bazalgette tell DWM how the filming of Shada marked the beginning of their long relationship.
  • SHADA ON LOCATION
  • Memories of the making of Shada from special effects assistant Steve Cambden, along with rare and previously unseen images from the 1979 location shoot.
  • THE FACT OF FICTION
  • This issue’s festive Fact of Fiction explores the 2011 Christmas Special The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe.
  • THE PHANTOM PIPER
  • Part Two of the Doctor and Bill’s latest comic strip adventure, written by Scott Gray and illustrated by Martin Geraghty.
PLUS... The Blogs of Doom, previews, book and audio reviews, news, the DWM Christmas Quiz and competitions.

Doctor Who Magazine 520 is on sale now, price £5.99.

Doctor Who Magazine Issue 520 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine Issue 520 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine Issue 520 (Credit: Panini)Doctor Who Magazine Issue 520 (Credit: Panini)




New Trailer ReleasedBookmark and Share

Friday, 8 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
The BBC has released a new trailer for this year's Christmas Special, Twice Upon A Time

The trailer will be shown on BBC One this evening.

Twice Upon A Time - Doctor Who: Christmas Special 2017 Trailer - BBC One




Twice Upon A Time - New Pictures ReleasedBookmark and Share

Wednesday, 6 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
The BBC have released new pictures taken from the upcoming Christmas episode of Doctor Who - Twice Upon A Time.

Two Doctors stranded in an Arctic snowscape, refusing to face regeneration. Enchanted glass people, stealing their victims from frozen time. And a World War One captain destined to die on the battlefield, but taken from the trenches to play his part in the Doctor's story.

An uplifting new tale about the power of hope in humanity’s darkest hours, Twice Upon A Time marks the end of an era. But as the Doctor must face his past to decide his future, his journey is only just beginning...
Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Captain (Mark Gatiss) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Captain (Mark Gatiss), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Captain (Mark Gatiss) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Captain (Mark Gatiss), The First Doctor (David Bradley), Bill (Pearl Mackie) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie), The First Doctor (David Bradley), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Simon Ridgway))Twice Upon a Time: The Doctor (Peter Capaldi) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Ray Burmiston))Twice Upon a Time: The Captain (Mark Gatiss) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Ray Burmiston))Twice Upon a Time: The First Doctor (David Bradley) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Ray Burmiston))Twice Upon a Time: Bill (Pearl Mackie) (Credit: BBC/BBC Worldwide (Ray Burmiston))Doctor Who News
The episode premieres in the UK on Christmas Day at 5.30pm, followed by transmission around the world. Full details here




Twice Upon A Time - Timeslot AnnouncedBookmark and Share

Tuesday, 5 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon A Time - The Doctor Who Christmas Special (Credit: BBC)
The BBC has confirmed that this year's Christmas Special, Twice Upon A Time will be broadcast at 5.30pm, Christmas Day on BBC One.

The timeslot follows the pattern of recent years whch sees Doctor Who as the anchor of the BBC's Christmas Evening Entertainment.

Overseas the Episode is expected to be braodcast on BBC America and on SPACE on Christams Day at 9pm and on ABC Australia on 26th December at 7.30pm.




Massive Demand for Doctor Who Preview TicketsBookmark and Share

Friday, 1 December 2017 - Reported by Marcus
Twice Upon a Time: Mark Gatiss, Peter Capaldi, David Bradley (Credit: BBC)BBC North's free screenings this year's Doctor Who Christmas Special, Twice Upon A Time, have received a huge request for tickets, with almost 35,000 entries in the ballot.

Exclusive previews will be shown in eight towns and cities in northern England.

Kicking off in Hartlepool on December 14, the Christmas tour will visit York, Hull, Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Salford and Durham, before finishing in Bradford on December 22.

Ticket holders will be able to pose on the BBC red carpet alongside props from the shows, including Daleks and the TARDIS.

David Bradley said:
It’s really exciting that Doctor Who fans in the north of England have the opportunity to see the Christmas special first. I really enjoyed playing the First Doctor and as I’m from Yorkshire, it’s extra special to me that the screenings are taking place in the north.
The ballot to apply for tickets to these exclusive previews closes this Sunday, 3 December. TTo apply visit the BBC Shows and Tours website. Tickets will be allocated via a random draw with 45% going to local postcodes, 45% going to the surrounding county and 10% to the rest of the UK.

The Doctor Who Screenings will be as follows
  • Thursday 14 December - Hartlepool Town Hall - 7pm
  • Friday 15 December - The Guild Hall, York – 7pm
  • Saturday 16 December - Jubilee Church, Hull - 7pm & 8.30pm
  • Sunday 17 December = St Nicholas Cathedral, Newcastle - 7pm & 8.30pm
  • Monday 18 December - The Middlesbrough Empire - 7pm & 8.30pm
  • Tuesday 19 December - Dock 10, MediaCityUK, Salford – 7pm & 8.30pm
  • Wednesday 20 December - Durham School - 7pm & 8.30pm
  • Friday 22 December - Old Odeon, Bradford - 7pm & 8.30pm
Please note the last few moments of the episode will be kept as a surprise until the BBC One broadcast on Christmas Day.