Doctor Who Christmas Special Review: The Series Embraces Change

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A brand new Doctor Who debuted on New Zealand screens last night, and for the first time in the show's history, it was a woman. Whittaker has also appeared in the likes of Attack the Block and Black Mirror. This year, though, the "special" took on greater significance, as it had the monumental task of saying goodbye to Peter Capaldi, while also welcoming incoming Doctor Jodie Whittaker, and, of course, affording long-time showrunner Steven Moffat his final turn as head writer.

But how will Whittaker be introduced to the world as the Thirteenth Doctor?

"It's more than an honour to play the Doctor".

This is another unusual move for the show as the Doctor tends to regenerate with an audience (his companions), but Whittaker's new Doctor will find herself alone in the TARDIS console room.

The emotional instalment co-starred David Bradley as the original Doctor, who re-enacted scenes from a 1966 episode of the long running sci-fi series. The Broadchurch actress was cast with much fanfare this past July, and will be the first woman to helm the TARDIS - although, judging by yesterday's episode, the ship is in need of some fix.

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However, pre-2005, only one of the incarnations actually spoke immediately post-regeneration (in this case, Colin Baker's Sixth Doctor in 1984).

Whittaker's Doctor didn't get a gentle start to her era, being flung from the Tardis out over the city of London.

In that sense, "Twice Upon a Time" is primarily interested in the question of why the Doctor would solider on, and, by positioning him against a much older version of himself, all while the promise of an historic regeneration into a female incarnation waits in the background, pointing out just how much the character has changed.

It's December 25th and you know what that means.

Peter Capaldi is not expected to attempt this during the forthcoming episode, Twice Upon A Time.