It has been announced that the BBC are axing the well accustomed Doctor Who Christmas special, opting to air ‘a special’ episode on New Year’s Day instead. Since the revival of the show in 2005, we have had a festive episode every year without fail. Now, much to the dismay of many Whovians, it is ‘no more’.
“With 2018 marking a brand-new era for Doctor Who it is only right that 2019 kicks off in spectacular style” said the Beeb in a statement on the decision to move the special to New Year’s Day on the show’s official website. “So, to mark the occasion, in this year’s festive episode the TARDIS will travel through the time vortex from its traditional timeslot on Christmas Day and will land in style on New Year’s Day.”
The special will be written by Chris Chibnall (the series showrunner) and directed by Wayne Yip, who previously directed two episodes during Peter Capaldi‘s as time as the Twelfth Doctor (‘Lie of the Land’ and ‘Empress of Mars’) as well as two episodes of the 2016 Doctor Who spin-off, ‘Class’ (‘Detained’ and ‘The Metaphysical Engine’, or ‘What Quill Did’).
This New Year’s special will feature Jodie Whittaker as The Doctor, Bradley Walsh as Graham, Mandip Gill as Yaz and Tosin Cole as Ryan.
Much to the excitement of many fans online, this episode also sees the return of a scarf to the Doctor’s attire as a new promotional image for the episode depicts the Thirteenth doctor sporting this new wardrobe item. This of course being an addition to the Time Lord’s costume we haven’t since the iconic long-draping patterned scarf worn by Tom Baker’s incarnation. While it’s not quite the iconic, lengthy knitwear favoured by the beloved Fourth Doctor, Whittaker’s new rainbow-coloured accessory is a great addition to her outfit whilst making a serious nod to the past – and based on the fireworks behind her, this New Year episode is set to be explosive but with a mysterious touch as another image shows.
They have also released another promotional image where we see the team in action, as well as the iconic TARDIS itself, where it looks like they are investigating some strange goings on. It also shows The Doctor pondering over some excavated human remains while the companions look on.
Along with these new images the official Doctor Who twitter account released a synopsis for the episode: “As the New Year begins, a terrifying evil is stirring, from across the centuries of Earth’s history. As the Doctor, Ryan, Graham and Yaz return home, will they be able to overcome the threat to planet Earth?”
The Doctor Who New Year’s Day special (as yet untitled) will be released on 1st January .