With only one more sleep until the Doctor Who Christmas special materialises on TV, we’re so close to unwrapping all the treats packed into the Tardis this year: Twice Upon a Time will feature Peter Capaldi’s regeneration, the last story penned by outgoing showrunner Steve Moffat, the return of Pearl Mackie’s Bill Potts and much much more.
But which part of the episode are Whovians most looking forward to watching through their sonic shades? Our poll of 14,000 RadioTimes.com readers has revealed the most anticipated moment of the special is… seeing The First and Twelfth Doctors interacting.
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With a whopping 40.08% of the vote, there’s no doubt Who fans are eager to see The First Doctor (played by David Bradley) and the Twelfth (Peter Capaldi) join forces and bantering as they battle the mysterious glass woman. And considering the chemistry we’ve glimpsed at in a preview clip of the special (see below), the clash of two Time Lords is set to be a festive highlight.
And with 26.1% of the vote, Jodie Whittaker’s first scene as The Doctor is the second most awaited moment.
There’s no surprise here: ever since the Broadchurch star was announced as the Thirteenth Doctor in July, fans have been excitedly waiting to see the first female reincarnation of Gallifrey’s finest take control of the Tardis.
But what will happen in her debut scene, penned by incoming showrunner Chris Chibnall? Very little is known so far, but this preview image of Peter Capaldi’s regeneration indicates that – like all modern Doctors – Whittaker’s Time Lady will enjoy her first Who moments aboard the Tardis.
Her first words remain a mystery, but the departing Steve Moffat has hinted Whittaker will speak in her native northern accent. “You’ll spend more time in that first episode reacting to her accent than her gender,” he told SFX magazine. “It’ll be, ‘Oh, what a big fuss… oh, she’s funny, isn’t she?… Yorkshire? Why’s she got a Yorkshire accent?’ That’s going to be it.”
This could be a very good choice: a massive 84% of voters in another Radiotimes.com poll said they want T’ Doctor to speak with a Yorkshire voice.
Of course, the end of the episode won’t only see the Thirteenth Doctor’s first scene, but the Twelfth’s last. And it’s sure to be a highlight: scooping up 15.84% of the vote, Capaldi’s exit the third most anticipated moment of the special.
Why? Well, any Doctor’s pre-regeneration scene is always historic, but with Capaldi’s ability to deliver an emotional speech like no other, it’s set to be very emotional exit indeed.
“When it came to the regeneration in the Christmas episode, Peter has a big scene about it, as one would expect,” Twice Upon a Time director Rachel Talalay admitted on the Radio Free Skaro podcast.
“And he and I spent some time alone on the Tardis, which is his place to sit when he wants to be quiet. We just sat there, in that space, alone, talking through that whole scene. Talking through in his happy space.”
“It’s absolutely a Peter Tour-de-force as you can imagine,” she said. “I was so lucky to get to do it.”
The episode won’t only feature major regeneration moments and quipping Doctors, but plenty more fans have to look forward to: 7.92% of voters were most excited to see David Bradley’s take on the First Doctor (originally played by William Hartnell), 4.22% the return of companion Bill Potts, 2.79% seeing two Tardises together on screen, and 2.23% the return of classic Who companions Ben and Polly.
Of course, this just shows how much we’ve got to unwrap: any of the above would be the talking point of any other episode, or even series, of Who. And we’re getting this all in one hour.
But, just like regenerations of past, perhaps we could be gifted an unexpected surprise. Who knows?
Doctor Who: Twice Upon a Time airs on BBC1 on Christmas Day (Monday 25th December) at 5.30pm