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Everything You Need To Know About ‘Doctor Who’s 2023 Christmas Special

Ncuti Gatwa as the Fifteenth Doctor in the 2023 Doctor Who Christmas special

‘Tis the season! After we’ve been given the gift of David Tennant and Catherine Tate’s all-too-brief yet wonderful return, our next Doctor Who present is on the way: Doctor Who’s 2023 Christmas special.

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This Doctor Who Christmas special will mark the true beginning of a new era for Doctor Who: not only will it be Ncuti Gatwa’s first full episode as the Fifteenth Doctor, but it will also introduce the Doctor’s new companion, Ruby Sunday (Millie Gibson) for the very first time. We can’t wait to see what kind of festive cheer this new episode will provide.

Here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming holiday episode.

When will Doctor Who’s 2023 Christmas special be released?

The BBC recently confirmed its holiday TV programming. Doctor Who will take pride of place on Monday, December 25, airing at 5.55PM GMT on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in the U.K. and on Disney+ internationally simultaneously. It has been confirmed that the episode will have a runtime of 55 minutes.

Who has been cast in Doctor Who’s 2023 Christmas special?

Millie Gibson as Ruby Sunday and Ncuti Gatwa as the Fifteenth Doctor in the 2023 Doctor Who Christmas Special

Aside from Ncuti Gatwa and Millie Gibson, the following cast members have been confirmed:

  • Davina McCall as herself: British TV presenter Davina McCall, best known for her work on the U.K.’s version of Big Brother, will be joining the festivities as herself.
  • Michelle Greenidge as Carla Sunday: Star of Russell T. Davies’ It’s A Sin Michelle Greenridge will portray Ruby’s mother, Carla Sunday.
  • Angela Wynter as Cherry Sunday: An icon of the British soap opera EastEnders, Angela Wynter will portray Ruby’s grandmother, Cherry Sunday.
  • Anita Dobson as Mrs. Flood: Another EastEnders star joins the cast as Ruby’s neighbor, Mrs. Flood.
  • Mary Malone as Trudy: There is currently no further information about this role.
  • Hemi Yeroham as Abdul: There is currently no further information about this role.

What is Doctor Who‘s 2023 Christmas special about?

The episode, titled “The Church on Ruby Road,” will depict the origins of Ruby Sunday and how she comes to meet the Doctor. An official logline released by the BBC reads:

“Long ago, on Christmas Eve, a baby was abandoned in the snow. Today, Ruby Sunday meets the Doctor, goblins, stolen babies and, perhaps, the secret of her birth.”

Though not much has been revealed about the plot, we do know that the episode will contain a “show-stopping musical number.” The music was composed by Doctor Who’s musical director, Murray Gold, while the lyrics were written by none other than Doctor Who’s former and present showrunner, Russell T. Davies. Gatwa and Gibson are featured on “The Goblin Song,” which is available to stream now.

The trailer for the upcoming Christmas special was released after the last of Doctor Who‘s 60th anniversary specials, “The Giggle,” premiered. To celebrate the new era, the Fifteenth Doctor immediately goes clubbing, and he and Ruby check out a flying goblin ship. What’s not to love? You can watch it here:

Stay tuned!

(featured image: BBC)

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El Kuiper
El (she/her) has been working as a freelance writer for various entertainment websites for over a year, ever since she completed her Ph.D. in Creative Writing. El's primary focus is television and movie coverage for The Mary Sue, including British TV and franchises like Marvel, but she is happy to pitch in with gaming content once in a while if it concerns one of the few video games she actually knows anything about. As much as she enjoys analyzing other people's stories, her biggest dream is to one day publish an original fantasy novel of her own.

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