There’s a surprise so big in the new series of Doctor Who that it comes with a countdown…

"It's an enormous spoiler," says Steven Moffat, "a spoiler that may actually melt your brains" - and he's not wrong...

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When departing Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat got up on stage before the press screening of the series ten opener, his main aim was to convince the audience not to watch part of what was about to be shown. Moffat asked us to close our eyes at a certain point during the episode two trailer, shown immediately after the main event, and save ourselves from the spoiler. And it’s a warning I feel duty bound to pass on…

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“This is just a public warning,” said a playful Moffat. “Some people hate spoilers and some people love spoilers – and everybody hates me whatever way they think about it. So this is my last attempt in this role to avoid hatred.

“At the end of the episode there will be yet another awesome trailer for Doctor Who… at the very end of the trailer there is, frankly, an enormous spoiler, a spoiler that may actually melt your brains. But I promise you, you’d be better off not knowing because awesome though it will be here, it will be even more awesome in a few weeks’ time. So we’re gonna give you the option, in our frankly camp and ridiculous way…

“There will come up a warning and then there will be a countdown to the spoiler, and then there will be a warning to ‘blink now’. If at that point you close your eyes and wait until you hear the cliffhanger noise, you will have a better experience in a few weeks’ time.”

So there you have it, warning delivered. And, yes, I am reliably informed that the same countdown will appear in the trailer when it airs on BBC1 on 15th April after the first episode.

And, of course, I want you to have the same option to close your eyes that all the journalists in the room had tonight (even though, like all the journalists, none of you will choose it).

Suffice it to say that, as far as certain fans will be concerned, it’s the kind of surprise for which phrases such as “melt the internet”, “OMG!” and, simply, “squeeeeeee!” were invented.

And if we’re lucky, it may just fill in an important gap in Time Lord history.

The countdown has begun…

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Doctor Who returns to BBC1 on Saturday 15th April