There’s so much to love about the holiday season. Spending time with family and friends, giving and receiving gifts, baking cookies… and of course, watching a new Doctor Who Christmas Special. (Obviously we saved the best for last.) With Christmas less than two weeks away, let’s dive into what we can expect from this year’s episode, The Return of Doctor Mysterio – from the trailer to thoughts from Peter Capaldi and Executive Producer Steven Moffat themselves.
Don’t expect flying fish or killer snowmen from this year’s Christmas Special. Instead, the Doctor will be dealing with something fangirls/fanboys are very familiar with: a New York adventure involving a superhero team-up. With superheroes playing such an essential role in today’s pop culture landscape, it makes sense that the Who-niverse is taking on the genre – and we can’t wait to see what that looks like.
This year’s episode finds Peter Capaldi’s Doctor and Matt Lucas’ Nardole (who appeared in last year’s Christmas episode) teaming up with an investigative reporter and a mysterious figure known only as The Ghost. With brain-swapping aliens threatening Manhattan, they’ll have to figure out what’s going on and save the day before it’s too late.
As Who fans know, the Christmas Specials tend to pack a punch in the feels department. We spoke with Peter Capaldi and Showrunner Steven Moffat at New York Comic Con about the upcoming episode and whether we can expect it to be, as one reporter teased, “super depressing.” “Christmas is depressing!” Capaldi countered, laughing. “But Doctor Who cheers it up. Particularly this year.”
Though Capaldi couldn’t reveal too much about “The Return of Doctor Mysterio,” he did hint at one of the major inspirations for the episode. “In the UK on Christmas Day, they used to show the Christopher Reeves Superman movies,” he said. “I loved them, and they were so witty and clever, but at the same time totally loyal to the idea of Superman. In a way, I think we’ve sort of made one of those.”
“That’s what we’re aiming for,” Steven Moffat affirmed.
Watch the trailer for The Return of Doctor Mysterio below:
The special is written by Steven Moffat, executive produced by Brian Minchin, produced by Peter Bennett, and directed by Ed Bazalgette (Poldark).
Want more Who? BBC America will be airing a Doctor Who Takeover Marathon in the days leading up to the Christmas Special, so be sure to tune in. After the sure-to-be-fantastic episode hitting our screens December 25, Doctor Who will be back for Moffat’s farewell season in Spring 2017.
Stay tuned for more from our interview with Peter Capaldi and Steven Moffat, as well as the cast and creatives behind the upcoming Doctor Who spinoff show Class.