The holiday season is upon us, with all that entails. Awkward family gatherings punctuated by screaming political debates that descend into adolescent name-calling. Gorging our already overfed selves with every succulent comestibles we can get our grubby mitts on. Reliving just a little bit of the magic the holidays once held for us while watching kids lose their minds inside a hurricane of tinsel, wrapping paper, and toys. And, one of my favorite holiday traditions of all: a new Doctor Who Christmas special. To help get you in the mood, here’s the new poster for this year’s Who festivities.
The BBC folks have also released an official synopsis for the episode, and it sounds like it’s got the potential to be good fun:
Christmas Eve 1892 and the falling snow is the stuff of fairy-tales. When the fairy-tale becomes a nightmare and a chilling menace threatens Earth, an unorthodox young governess, Clara, calls on the Doctor for help. But the Doctor is in mourning, reclusive and determined not to engage in the problems of the universe. As old friends return, will the Doctor really abandon humankind or will he fight to save the world — and Christmas — from the icy clutches of this mysterious menace.
I love when the show returns to Victorian times, but especially when they do so for the Christmas special. It all feels comfortingly Dickensian, at least if Dickens wrote Doctor Who fan fiction. Which he very well might have, but the Doctor just made him promise never to release it. At any rate, we’ll finally get a proper introduction to the Doctor’s new companion, Clara, and it will be interesting to see what her connection to the played-by-the-same-actress character Oswin from the season premiere, “Asylum of the Daleks.” Either way, she’s cute as a button and Oswin was great, so she gets a thumbs up from me.
I also like that the episode will find the Doctor spending the holidays like lots of us do — wrapped in a fog of melancholy and depression. The loss of Amy and Rory has clearly done a number on him, far more so than the loss of many previous companions. If that seems odd, consider than this incarnation of the Doctor has never known a time without Amy Pond in his life, so it’s understandable that he’d be thrown for a loop by her loss. To borrow a phrase from Lost, she was his Constant.
But enough of that mopey business. Let’s celebrate all the wonderful things a Doctor Who Christmas special can offer. For instance, evil Snowmen!
Penned by showrunner Steven Moffat, Doctor Who’s “The Snowmen” will air on Christmas Day both here in the States and across the (not Amy) Pond in the U.K.