I sure loved the premiere episode of Series 10 of Doctor Who, and one of the things I love the most about it are the various references to the First Doctor, most prominently the picture of his granddaughter Susan. Reflecting on the past seems to be a theme; we already know that the original Cybermen are returning, as is John Simm’s incarnation of the Master, but now a new rumor is suggesting Peter Capaldi‘s final episode (the Christmas special) could feature the return of a past Doctor…the First one, even.
I say “rumor,” because this news comes courtesy of British tabloid rag The Mirror–which, of course, presents it as absolute truth. According to them, the 2017 Christmas special, where Capaldi will regenerate, will also feature the First Doctor, as played by actor David Bradley, who assayed the role of William Hartnell in Mark Gatiss‘ 2013 TV movie, An Adventure in Space and Time, which detailed the creation of Doctor Who and its initial three-and-a-bit seasons.
If this ends up being true, I for one will be ecstatic. I thought Bradley did a brilliant job playing the often irascible Hartnell, and he certainly looked the part when in the Doctor’s wardrobe. They’ve even reused the TARDIS set from that movie a few times in the show proper since. The notion of having a different actor playing the original Doctor isn’t a new one, either; Hartnell died in 1975 and he was replaced by Richard Hurndall for the 1983 20th Anniversary special, “The Five Doctors.”
So, again, this is just a rumor–that has been substantiated by no other outlet, mind–but it would be very awesome, and in keeping with the theme of Capaldi’s final year. Hell, why don’t they go further with it? Why not bring in the Second and Third Doctor as well. Yes, both Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee have died as well, but Reece Shearsmith played Troughton in An Adventure in Space and Time, and Pertwee’s son Sean Pertwee (currently Alfred on Gotham) not only looks enough like his dad, but has dressed up as him for Halloween on multiple occasions. I demand a “Three Doctors” reunion in this hypothetical scenario.
Anyway, it’d be pretty cool is what I’m saying. We’ll let you know if the Bradley rumor ever gets confirmed, but in the meantime, tell us what you’d think of the First Doctor returning to Doctor Who in December in the comments below!
Kyle Anderson is the Associate Editor and the resident Whovian for Nerdist. Follow him on Twitter!