Doctor Who could air an extra episode before the new series

We could be getting more Jodie Whittaker sooner than we expected

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When it was revealed that Jodie Whittaker’s second Doctor Who series wasn’t set to air until 2020, fans were gravely disappointed – but it now looks possible we could be seeing the return of the BBC sci-fi series sooner than we thought…

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RadioTimes.com understands that a plan is in the works to air a standalone Doctor Who special some time before series 12 hits screens, possibly in a festive slot like this year’s New Year’s Day Special or the Christmas specials that were released every year prior (from 2005 onwards).

However, it’s also possible that the proposed episode will bypass the festive period altogether, airing in a less competitive slot to give the Tardis team their best reintroduction this winter, and avoiding the usual holiday themes favoured by previous Doctor Who specials.

Past seasonal specials have seen the Doctor and company take on robot Santas, deadly Snowmen and a Dalek on New Year’s Day, although this wouldn’t be the first time a Who special has aired without a festive theme.

In 2009, David Tennant’s Tenth Doctor was transported to a desert world for spring one-off adventure Planet of the Dead, followed by the spooky The Waters of Mars in November of the same year, so really a standalone non-festive special wouldn’t be completely out of character for the modern Doctor Who series.

Exactly what Jodie Whittaker’s Doctor and her team could be facing in this special is currently unknown – the BBC are remaining tight-lipped about all aspects of the upcoming episodes, and declined to comment for this story – though we do know that the full series will include the return of classic villains the Judoon and a possible jaunt to wartime Paris among other storylines.

For these and other exciting adventures, fans will have to wait until “early 2020,” according to BBC Director-General Tony Hall – but it might just be that they’ll have something to tide them over in the meantime.

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Doctor Who returns to BBC1 in early 2020