While current Doctor Jodie Whittaker and showrunner Chris Chibnall prepare to wrap up their respective Doctor Who runs with this fall’s “Centenary Special” (more on that below), incoming showrunner Russell T Davies has already started pulling together his team for not just Series 14 but also the upcoming 60th-anniversary specials. So far, that’s included new Doctor Ncuti Gatwa, David Tennant (Tenth Doctor), Catherine Tate (Donna Noble), Yasmin Finney (Rose), and Neil Patrick Harris. For this go-around, Davies is taking a break from the casting world to touch upon two topics currently being speculated over. Speaking with Doctor Who Monthly (which you can subscribe to here), Davies offered some possibilities to explain Tennant & Tate’s return, and then he followed that up with some clues regarding what monsters can be expected.
Davies Offers a List of Tennant/Tate Return Possibilities: “A mysteriously forgotten excursion for the TARDIS in between ‘Planet of the Ood’ and ‘Sontaran Stratagem’? Or maybe a multiverse thing, they’re all the rage these days. Maybe this is the Doctor and Donna from Universe 557, all set to collide with our own. Then again, maybe, just maybe, this return is so impossible that it’s actually an intricate illusion created by an old enemy of the Doctor’s. Or maybe an old enemy of Donna’s. Nerys!”
Davies on Monsters & Set Leaks: “There might be information leaking beyond our control. For example, at the time of writing, we’re six days away from a night shoot in Cardiff in which some monsters might be glimpsed. Monsters which might well be familiar to readers of DWM. Well, familiar, but new. Whatever that means. But there, maybe, for once, we can try to deny, deny, deny.”
“There aren’t quite the words to describe how I’m feeling. A mix of deeply honoured, beyond excited and of course a little bit scared. This role and show mean so much to so many around the world, including myself, and each one of my incredibly talented predecessors has handled that unique responsibility and privilege with the utmost care. I will endeavour my utmost to do the same. Russell T Davies is almost as iconic as the Doctor himself and being able to work with him is a dream come true,” Gatwa said when the news of his casting as the 14th Doctor was first announced. “His writing is dynamic, exciting, incredibly intelligent and fizzing with danger. An actor’s metaphorical playground. The entire team have been so welcoming and truly give their hearts to the show. And so as much as it’s daunting, I’m aware I’m joining a really supportive family. Unlike the Doctor, I may only have one heart but I am giving it all to this show.”
Davies added at the time, “The future is here and it’s Ncuti! Sometimes talent walks through the door and it’s so bright and bold and brilliant, I just stand back in awe and thank my lucky stars. Ncuti dazzled us, seized hold of the Doctor and owned those TARDIS keys in seconds. It’s an honour to work with him, and a hoot, I can’t wait to get started. I’m sure you’re dying to know more, but we’re rationing ourselves for now, with the wonderful Jodie’s epic finale yet to come. But I promise you, 2023 will be spectacular!” BBC CCO Charlotte Moore, Chief Content Officer agreed, also adding at the time, “Ncuti has an incredible dynamism, he’s a striking and fearless young actor whose talent and energy will set the world alight and take Doctor Who on extraordinary adventures under Russell T Davies’ new era.” Instead, it’s far more likely that he’s actually talking about little-known additions to the Doctor Who canon, Beep the Meep and the Wrarth Warriors.