Peter Capaldi’s first season as The Doctor just wrapped up a little over a week ago, and we’re a month and a half out from his first full Christmas special. But we still didn’t actually know at this point whether he’d be returning for season nine. I mean, it certainly seemed like a given, but nobody had confirmed that he had signed on the line which is dotted. Thankfully now we know, and the word is good.
SPOILERS if you aren’t caught up with Doctor Who!
The Hollywood Reporter cornered Who showrunner Steven Moffat at a DVD release party in London and got him to sound off. Moffat said, “Yes, he’s confirmed,” but added that the involvement of actress Jenna Coleman, who plays companion Clara Oswald, was still up in the air. That’s not enormously surprising given that there have been rumors for months that she wouldn’t be returning after the Christmas special.
Clara had a good run this season, becoming considerably more interesting once she got out from under the weight of the “Impossible Girl” arc that underpinned most of Matt Smith’s final run of episodes. Of course, much of that arc was closely involved with that of her love interest, Danny Pink (Samuel Anderson), and he is obviously no longer in the picture. (As the Doctor said earlier this season, “Top layer if you’d like to say a few words.”) It would be interesting to see where Clara goes from here, but on the other hand the season finale felt very much like an end to her adventures with the Doctor. I guess we’ll just have to see where the upcoming Christmas special leaves her.
The DVD event was also attended by Capaldi himself, as well as Anderson and Michelle Gomez, who played Missy/The Mistress in the just completed season. During a Q&A session, Capaldi revealed a fun little tidbit that I hadn’t heard before, that he was approached to audition for the role of the Eighth Doctor in the 1996 Fox TV movie, but he declined and the role eventually went to Paul McGann. So why did Capaldi say no? “I loved it so much that I didn’t want to have the disappointment of going for something that I would never get.” Just as well, since McGann only got the chance to play the Doctor on screen once, at least until last year’s “Night of The Doctor” webisode.
Plus, Matt Smith might not have gotten his “He sounds old, please tell me I didn’t get old” line.
Peter Capaldi will return in the Christmas special in a few short weeks, alongside Jenna Coleman and Nick Frost as Santa Claus. In the meantime, here’s Lego Matt Smith regenerating into Lego Peter Capaldi. SPACESHIP!