Doctor Who Christmas Spoilers – Regeneration & Casting Details Revealed


As any hardcore fans of the show will know, the mythology of Doctor Who permits a Time Lord to regenerate just twelve times. With the recent addition of John Hurt to the pantheon of Doctors, along with David Tennant using up one of his regenerations in the episode Journey’s End, it seems that Matt Smith is now the thirteenth and final Doctor.

doctor_who_12___peter_capaldi_by_drksde-d6gmgf5-630x472All sorts of speculation has sprung up around this problem, with some believing that showrunner Steven Moffat would simply ignore the rule set in The Deadly Assassin (particularly after a comment made by Matt Smith’s Doctor to Clyde Langer in The Death of the Doctor, an episode of the Sarah-Jane Adventures), and others wondering whether the Elixir given to the Doctor by the Sisterhood of Karn in The Night of the Doctor might be part of the solution. It’s now been revealed, however, that Matt Smith will in fact be the Doctor’s last incarnation. In a dramatic speech during the upcoming Christmas special, The Time of the Doctor, the Doctor will say, “I’m dying and there is nothing I can do about it.”

In an interview with The Mirror, Steven Moffat confirmed his belief that “[t]he 12 regenerations limit is a central part of Doctor Who mythology – science fiction is all about rules, you can’t just casually break them.”

There have already been hints about the Doctor’s life coming to an end, with his visit to the planet Trenzalore in The Name of the Doctor earlier this year. Yet, if this is true and the Doctor is really set to die in the next episode, the question still remains as to who or what Peter Capaldi will be playing as Matt Smith’s replacement. Cryptically, another show source stated that:

“The riddle of the regeneration problem, something fans have talked about for decades, will be faced head on at Christmas. There is going to be another huge cliffhanger and somehow Peter Capaldi has to join and the series has to continue.

“The show’s big fans, known as Whovians, won’t believe their eyes at Christmas.”

eternal_law_episode1_10Speaking after the broadcast of The Day of the Doctor on Saturday, Matt Smith said:

“I think what’s really clever about it is that what he [Moffat] has managed to do is change the mythology of the character – which, after 50 years, is an achievement.”

In other Christmas special news, it’s also been confirmed that Fringe actress Orla Brady will star in the episode, as a character from the Doctor’s past. According to Digital Spy, the episode’s whole plot will be “revolving around her”. Classic Who villains the Cybermen are also believed to be making a return in the episode, which will see the Doctor return to Trenzalore where he is buried.

The Time of the Doctor will air on Christmas Day this year. The episode is written by Steven Moffat and directed by Jamie Payne.

Edit: This article was updated to replace the episode’s working title, The Twelfth Night, with the official title, The Time of the Doctor.

Sources: The Mirror | Digital Spy

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