It’s true: everyone’s favorite Doctor is back.
Sunday night’s special 90-minute broadcast of Jodie Whittaker’s swan song as the Thirteenth Doctor in Doctor Who: The Power of the Doctor elicited several audible gasps and hoarse cheers from millions of living rooms as Whittaker was suddenly reborn as…David Tennant, the Tenth Doctor?!
No one could have expected Whittaker to turn into the fan-favorite Doctor Who Time Lord, and his appearance is a sly prank at Doctor Who’s big 60th anniversary party next year. There are currently no detailed explanations for Tennant’s triumphant return, but fantastic rumors are already circulating.
See also: Five actors who almost played Doctor Who
As part of the BBC’s centenary celebrations, Whittaker’s latest adventure marked the end of not only the series’ first female Doctor, but also Chris Chibnall’s controversial career as the show’s chief showrunner. This last of a three-episode send-off was meant to usher in a new era for the iconic franchise, with Sex Education’s Nkuti Gatwa set to be the next TARDIS commander, with Russell T Davies serving as showrunner.
“If you thought the arrival of David Tennant was a shock, we have many more surprises ahead of us,” Davis said in a statement. (will open in a new tab). The path to the Fifteenth Doctor Nkuti is filled with mystery, horror, robots, puppets, danger and fun! And what does it have to do with the return of the wonderful Donna Noble? How, what, why? We give you a year to speculate, and then all hell breaks loose!”
The Power of the Doctor also featured several famous characters from the past such as Colin Baker, Paul McGann and Sophie Aldred. Other major episodes are in the works, and we now have a full twelve months to speculate about who else might be back when Doctor Who blows out the birthday candles with three anniversary episodes, airing in November 2023.
(Image credit: BBC)
“What a wonderful, wonderful opportunity to revisit what was such a wonderful, happy and important time in my life,” Tennant told BBC News. (will open in a new tab).
Tennant, who played the Tenth Doctor from 2005 to 2010, will return in this 2023 trio of specials alongside Catherine Tate, who played his companion Donna Noble. Afterwards, Nkuti Gatwa officially takes the keys to the TARDIS as Doctor Who’s Fifteenth Doctor.
Meanwhile, Variety reports that Doctor Who will be streaming on Disney+. (will open in a new tab) for locations outside the United Kingdom starting in 2023. “I love this show and it’s the best of both worlds – with the vision and joy of the BBC and Disney+ together we can launch the TARDIS across the planet reaching a new generation of fans while maintaining our traditional home at the BBC in the UK,” said the showrunner. Russell T Davis, according to Variety.
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