The last time we saw Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor, it was fighting a particularly scary Dalek in “Resolution,” the 2019 New Years’ Day special. Yeah, that was just about a year ago. Since then, we’ve gotten close to a sweet F-A about series 12, save for a lone image of the Doctor and a Judoon. Fans have been antsy waiting for something of substance in the Whovian realm and following several, spaced-out teases, we have a new trailer!
And what better day to unveil it than Saturday, November 23? 56 years ago, the very first Doctor Who episode, “An Unearthly Child,” aired on BBC One. The show has certainly come a long way since those black-and-white days, and judging by the trailer, it’s still trekking.
After more shots of ghost-alien-things and a Judoon, we see some shots of another guest actor, Goran Višnjić, who I’m gonna say right now is playing Nikola Tesla, one of the most brilliant electrical engineers and inventors ever. Either that or he’s playing Kevin Kline.
Then we get a little bit of ominous. At one point the Doctor asks where they are, and the voice responds “Paris. 1943”; if you know your World War II history, you know Paris was under Nazi occupation. In 1943, however, Paris fell during Allied air raids. We see a shot of the Eiffel Tower with the city on fire around it. Yikes.
But that’s not all; the Doctor says something is coming for her. Sure, that happens a lot. But we also see flashes of a Cyberman, or perhaps many. It looks pretty rusty and beaten up, too. Maybe it’ll prove to be a particular Cyberman from the Doctor’s past. A Cyberman looking for revenge? That’s the Cyberman costume that first appeared in the Eleventh Doctor story “Nightmare in Silver,” and returned in the Twelfth Doctor stories “Dark Water/Death in Heaven” and “The Doctor Falls.”
So we see (and hear) the Judoon, but we also see a shot of a Racnoss, which is the giant arachnid centaur thing the 10th Doctor faced in “The Runaway Bride” in 2006. Interesting, that’s at least two Russell T. Davies-era aliens returning. We’re looking at a decade since the RTD era ended; that’s plenty long enough to bring back some baddies from his tenure as legacy monsters. For so long, the focus on returning baddies was on the classic series, but there are more stories to tell from original creatures from 2005 forward. Ones that aren’t the Weeping Angels.
— Doctor Who on BBC America (@DoctorWho_BBCA) November 23, 2019
The official Doctor Who BBC America Twitter account tweeted this image of the cast, which gives us a better look at the vineyard, tuxedo episode. Even more intriguingly, the Thirteenth Doctor seems to be doing a stealth cosplay of the Eleventh Doctor in his circa 2011-2012 costume. Bow ties are cool, after all.
Basically, the series 12 trailer looks really exciting. And this is great news because overall I found series 11 a bit lackluster. Despite amazing and necessary steps forward in hiring more women and people of color to write and direct the show, and of course the long-overdue casting of a woman as the Doctor, the stories in the first Chris Chibnall series felt under-baked. Under-baked and just not that exciting. While there were certainly a few standouts, the overall sense of narrative thrust in each episode felt lacking.
I’d been a bit cautious about the upcoming series, but for all the lack of marketing in the past year, this trailer gives me a lot of hope for Doctor Who. And even though we don’t have an official release date yet, we can go into the holiday season feeling a bit more Doctorish.
And if you want to feel Doctorish, too, why not check out the swag you can get this holiday season in this nifty unboxing video from yours truly.
— Nerdist (@nerdist) November 19, 2019
Featured Image: BBC