This past weekend, at the 2017 San Diego Comic Con panel for Doctor Who
, it was revealed that the December 25th entry into the program - marking Peter Capaldi's exit as the 12th Doctor - will be called Doctor Who - 2017 Christmas Special: Twice Upon A Time
. As revealed at the end of the Series 10
season finale, David Bradley (Game of Thrones, Broadchurch, An Adventure in Space and Time, Harry Potter
films) will be in it, and play the 1st Doctor, in a team-up which is remarked upon by the story's title.
The BBC also writes that the Christmas special this year "will feature Pearl Mackie as Bill Potts...
[although] viewers will have to wait until Christmas to discover exactly how Bill, who will appear throughout the episode, makes her return
" The holiday installment also includes a character that is a World War One soldier, known so far only as "The Captain," played by episode co-star Mark Gatiss.
For those of you who think Gatiss has a familiar-sounding name, you're right! He wrote the 2013 BBC docudrama An Adventure in Space and Time
, a TV movie created for the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who
, and which tells the story of the program's origins. David Bradley starred in it as "William Hartnell," playing the actor who originally played the 1st Doctor! It was Bradley's work in that production which suggested he could also play the 1st Doctor himself in a Doctor Who
story...which we'll now get.
Gatiss has also written 9 episodes of Doctor Who
: "The Unquiet Dead" (2005); "The Idiot's Lantern" (2006); "Victory of the Daleks" (2010); "Night Terrors" (2011); "Cold War" (2013); "The Crimson Horror" (2013); "Robot of Sherwood" (2014); "Sleep No More" (2015); and "Empress of Mars" (2017). He's partnered with Steven Moffat (Who
's departing showrunner) as co-creator and co-executive-producer of the BBC program Sherlock
, and written 7 episodes of that show as well. Gatiss also appears in Sherlock
, too, as recurring character Mycroft Holmes (Sherlock's older brother).
Toby Whithouse, another Doctor Who
writer (6 episodes, including "School Reunion" and "A Town Called Mercy") will also appear in "Twice Upon A Time," playing another soldier in World War I (who we presume appears with the Captain played by Gatiss). Lily Travers (Kingsman: The Secret Service, Me Before You
, upcoming Brussel
) appears as "Polly" (note that the 1st Doctor had a companion by that name, played by Anneke Wills, who - along with Ben - had accompanied him for a while and was there when he regenerated into the 2nd Doctor). And Jodie Whittaker (Broadchurch, The Assets, Black Mirror
"The Entire History of You") will be in the 2017 Christmas Special, too.
Now, five months ahead of the airing of the Christmas-day special, Amazon.com has begun accepting pre-orders on both DVD
($19.98 SRP) and high-def Blu-ray Disc
($24.98 SRP) of Doctor Who - 2017 Christmas Special: Twice Upon A Time
. Both listings show a release date of Tuesday, February 20th
, and both show up as a single-disc item running approximately 60 minutes long. No details or extras (if any) are mentioned, and it's far too early to expect package art at this time. The date and pricing is VERY early info, too, and could be subject to change. Stay tuned for updates, as further developments continue!