Words by Talia Lewis
The recent casting of Peter Capaldi in Doctor Who as the new Doctor means the show is set to revisit its traditional doctor-companion model. Capaldi is set to be less of a boyfriend—like previous Doctors Matt Smith and David Tennant—and more of father figure, like William Hartnell’s original incarnation.
Capaldi told Doctor Who Magazine that his interpretation of the role will present “the sort of Tom Baker, Christopher Eccleston end of the spectrum, where [the Doctor] is mad and dangerous and difficult.”
Better known for his work on Skins and The Thick of It, Capaldi is already familiar to the Whoniverse, having appeared in the season four episode The Fires of Pompeii, and the spin-off series Torchwood.
As always there are plenty of predictions and theories about the upcoming season floating around (Warning: Possible spoilers!)
Matt Smith’s return
Unfortunately for Smith fans, this is a vocal cameo only, where the previous Doctor will call the future from the past because, well, timey-wimey why not? Footage of the new season being filmed in Cardiff shows the Doctor’s companion Clara (Jenna-Louise Coleman) answer a phone call, inspect the Doctor closely, then embrace him. Cardiff resident Ryan Farrell tweeted, “The Eleventh Doctor phones Clara from Trenzalore and tells her not to worry. The two Doctors briefly speak to each other as well”.
Renegade Time Lord The Master’s return
An alleged leaked audition tape, in which a greasy-looking guy addresses the ‘current inhabitants of the planet Earth’ and introduces himself as the Master, the Doctor’s fellow Time Lord and archenemy. A contaminated water supply turns people into “human ticking time bombs”, destined to destroy the planet unless someone gives up the Doctor or he surrenders himself. The Master’s last appearance in the two-part special The End of Time saw him sent back to the last day of the Last Great Time War (which destroyed the Time Lords’ home planet Gallifrey).
A male companion… for Clara?
The Daily Star asserts that the BBC wants to “keep the show young and sexy after signing 55-year-old Peter Capaldi as the Time Lord”. The couple-as-companions has already been done twice in the reboot. Mickey Smith accompanied girlfriend Rose Tyler in season two and Rory Williams and Amy Pond (a.k.a. the last centurion and the Doctor’s mother-in-law) were the Doctor’s companions in seasons five, six, and seven. Samuel Anderson has recently signed on to the show as recurring character Danny Pink. Whether he’s set to be Clara’s young and sexy love interest is unconfirmed.
Capaldi will probably battle the Daleks
Because he asked the producers nicely, says The Daily Star. Confirmed or not, this is the safest prediction. The exterminating robots have been in every season of the reboot so far. Fan photos online confirm that early episodes will also feature recurring characters Strax and Madame Vastra, Capaldi riding a horse, and Clara as her Victorian era self. The latter could mean that present Clara and past Clara are set to meet, reassuring fans of Coleman that the Impossible Girl storyline—in which she entered the Doctor’s timeline, fragmenting into millions of copies of herself to prevent the Great Intelligence from rewriting history to destroy the Doctor—will continue.