Everything we know about this year’s ‘Doctor Who’ Christmas special

Doctor Who returns for its eleventh Christmas special this festive season.

This news summary will be updated regularly as more details are revealed, with the latest updates at the top of each section. Rumours and unconfirmed reports will be marked with a *.

> Order ‘The Husbands of River Song’ on DVD on Amazon.

> Order ‘The Husbands of River Song’ on Blu-ray on Amazon.


Title: ‘The Husbands of River Song’

Doctor Who   The Husbands of River Song Alex Kingston Peter Capaldi

Writer: Steven Moffat.

Director: Douglas Mackinnon.

Executive producers: Steven Moffat and Brian Minchin.

Producer: Nikki Wilson.

Main cast: Peter Capaldi as the Doctor.

Guest cast: Alex Kingston as River Song, Matt Lucas as Nardole, Greg Davies as King Hydroflax, Rowan Polonski, Robert Curtis, Chris Lew Kum Hoi.

Filming: 2-26 September 2015.

Air date: Friday 25 December 2015, 5.15pm.

Doctor Who Christmas 2015

Official synopsis: “It’s Christmas Day on a remote human colony and the Doctor is hiding from Christmas Carols and Comedy Antlers. But when a crashed spaceship calls upon the Doctor for help, he finds himself recruited into River Song’s squad and hurled into a fast and frantic chase across the galaxy. King Hydroflax is furious, and his giant Robot bodyguard is out of control and coming for them all! Will Nardole survive? And when will River Song work out who the Doctor is? All will be revealed on a starliner full of galactic super-villains and a destination the Doctor has been avoiding for a very long time.”

Steven Moffat: “We’ve just lost Clara, so I didn’t want to go straight into a new companion. I’ll be honest, I brought River Song back in because I thought there was a possibility I’d never write it [Doctor Who] again so that’d be my goodbye.”

Steven Moffat: “It doesn’t really matter, but for those who care, it’s immediately after ‘The Angels Take Manhattan’ [in River’s timeline].”

Nonso Anozie: “I just shot Doctor Who. I’m playing the alien who is the main villain of the next Christmas special.”

Steven Moffat: “That’s been a riot to do. That’s been sort of a big fun chase episode, really. Just Mr and Mrs Who battling their way past nonsense and that’s been great fun. Alex [Kingston] is always great value.”

Peter Capaldi: “It is a lighthearted fun thing, River doesn’t recognise the Doctor and he gets upset because she is flirting and doing all sorts of stuff with people.”

Steven Moffat: “There is wonderful chemistry between Peter and Alex. It had to be done.’”

Peter Capaldi: “Yes, there is [a chance for romance with River Song]. My Doctor is different from the Doctors who were there when Alex [Kingston] first arrived. This Doctor’s different from that. It’s a different dynamic.”

Doctor Who Alex Kingston River Song

Alex Kingston: “Steven Moffat is on glittering form, giving us an episode filled with humour and surprise guest castings. I met Peter for the first time at Monday’s read through, we had a laugh, and I am now excited and ready to start filming with him and the Doctor Who team. Christmas in September? Why not!”

Steven Moffat: “Another Christmas, another special for Doctor Who – and what could be more special than the return of Alex Kingston as Professor River Song? The last time the Doctor saw her she was a ghost. The first time he met her, she died. So how can he be seeing her again? As ever, with the most complicated relationship in the universe, it’s a matter of time…”

BBC: “It’s Christmas Day in the future and the TARDIS is parked on a snowy village street, covered in icicles, awaiting its next adventure. Time traveller River Song meets her husband’s new incarnation, in the form of Peter Capaldi, for the first time this Christmas.”

Rachel Talalay: “Guest cast (and cast-cast) for next #DoctorWho episode gave me feels.”

Doctor Who Christmas 2015


> Order ‘The Husbands of River Song’ on DVD on Amazon.

> Order ‘The Husbands of River Song’ on Blu-ray on Amazon.

What do you want to see in the Christmas special? Let us know below…

  • Doctor Moo

    Not sure how I feel about more River Song after The Name of the Doctor ended her story so beautifully but we will see. Christmas episodes have best mixed before with “The Christmas Invasion”, “The Next Doctor”, “A Christmas Carol”, “The Snowmen”, “The Time of the Doctor” and “Last Christmas” all being excellent episodes but “The Runaway Bride”, “Voyage of the Damned”, “The End of Time” and “The Doctor, the Widow & the Wardrobe” being less so. I’m hoping this will be in the former category. Could this be the best special yet and take “A Christmas Carol” down from the top of the podium?

    • Andrew Ulrich

      Can’t go wrong with more River…. and her story arc wasn’t quite ended…. She still has at least one more spoiler tucked away in all that hair! 😀

      (Re: “If Clara’s really dead, then how can I still be here?”)
      Everyone’s obvious answer is “They were mentally linked, silly! Of course she would fade!”

      But obviously everyone forgot (have you seen a memory worm running loose?), only a few moments before, the Doctor himself told River: “I can always see you, I can always hear you, and I always listen.”, which means even if the mental link were broken, the Doctor could still see River…… meaning there has to be a physical connection between Clara and River which would cause River to fade if Clara died…… but what could it be? – Spoilers! 😉

      • Kathy Hoover

        He also said “she should have faded by now”….no, I kind of wish Moffat had left us with the final scene in Name of the Doctor…..or given us more River with Eleven and their adventures off screen over the centuries that Eleven lived (the longest lived incarnation!) but mentioned many times (Jim the Fish, Easter Island, etc) Eleven did tell Doriam when he asked about River Song “imprisoned all her days”…Eleven responded, “her days, yes, but her nights…that’s between her and me, eh?” There’s a whole lot more to imagine there that could be “spoilers”. I love River, but it kind of cheapens her sacrifice in the Library to bring her back for cheap laughs at Christmas.

        • Kathy Hoover

          Plus, there is this….”We all change, when you think about it, we’re all different people; all through our lives, and that’s okay, that’s good you’ve gotta keep moving, so long as you remember all the people that you used to be. I will not forget one line of this, not one day, I swear. I will always remember when The Doctor was me.” The Doctor is the same, but different. How will River feel about this new face? New person? Does she even know he regenerated, as she would have known he was in his last body of the cycle as Eleven? Will she be surprised? Hoping to find out!

        • ThePurpleFrockCoat

          I agree. That “goodbye sweetie,’ was a very good moment plus River going on about The Doctor not saying goodbye and him giving her the closure she craved gets cheapened by a return.

    • Jakk Frost

      Yes, that was the end of her arc, and we saw the beginning of her arc, not in The Library but in Let’s Kill Hitler (or in A Good Man Goes to War if you want to get technical), but we haven’t seen much of the middle of her arc.

      Remember, one of the first things she said to the Doctor when she admitted she knew him was “you’re so young!”. She was talking about his chronological age, but she could also have been referring to his physical age.

  • DoctorWhoFan

    I sincerely hope that Clara will be in the Christmas Special and Series 10.

    • Doctor Moo

      Same, but I wouldn’t count on it.

      • Me too!!! if ya’ll are on twitter follow me at coldharddrewth – us clara fans gotta stick together!

        • Dr. Moo

          I’m not on twitter and don’t plan to be.

          Nice to meet another Clara fan. It’s only so long before this post gets attacked by those who hate her because they can’t live without their beloved Wose Tylwer.

          • a noble rose by a river

            Haha, um, you kind of just acted like a total hypocrite… First you complained about those who always ‘hate’ on Clara, and then, to demonstrate your hypocrisy, you then ‘hated’ on Rose. I love them both, AND I respect if people dislike one of them- but how can you want people to respect YOUR liking of Clara, when you yourself just made fun of people liking ‘Wose’?

          • Jakk Frost

            I was about to point out the irony of his hypocrisy myself. Glad I wasn’t the only one who saw it. 🙂

          • a noble rose by a river

            Also, I don’t see how the two are connected- haven’t heard of cases
            where a person is a fan of Rose, and so dislikes Clara, or vice versa. Either way, Clara is
            disliked by many people in the fandom,- and I strongly doubt that it has anything to do with Rose.
            So, it all comes down to the fact that you find people who bash Clara annoying, but don’t actually try to be the change that you’re asking for..

          • Clara Johnson

            While I understand your anger with people hating on poor Clara, I think your hating on the wrong companion! I think the reason people don’t like Clara is because she replaced Amy Pond and Rory at the same time! Both of them are very popular, I happen to be one of those who really liked them! So I think that may be the reason why some people don’t like her! For me, the only reason I have any trouble watching her parts, is later in season 8 when she got that annoying boyfriend! I was so happy when he died, he just kept nagging Clara and The Doctor even, about her going places with The Doctor, he whined way too much! But Clara by herself I happen to like! I don’t have a companion in the new series I don’t like! Sure I have my favorites, like everyone, but I don’t hate any of them! My favorites are Martha Jones and Amy Pond! And of course Rory as well, but only because of his relationship with Amy! But my all time favorite character of all of the people who ran around with any of the Doctor new and classic, is River Song! And I am sure she always will be!

          • ThePurpleFrockCoat

            You know that is the part I do not understand.Companions come and go. When the old ones leave a new takes their place. I know its hard to say goodbye to a favorite companion but that’s how its been. I know I will have a hard time saying goodbye to Clara who is one of my all around favorites but at some point I have to let go.

    • Catherine Edmends

      well we know she’s now filmed her last Dr Who scene

  • Chris Hine

    River meets PC’s Doctor for the first time. But is it the first time PC’s Doctor has met River? Timey wimey and all that 🙂

    • Dr. Moo

      Yes. Pay attention to the series. We haven’t seen that. River could have met him but he hasn’t met her yet.

  • vegastearoom

    But didn’t 12 say that he and River spent a moth on some otter planet together?

    • Kathy Hoover

      no he said he spent a month with otters when they had a fight, but that was when he was still Eleven….he said it very early last series, this will be River’s first meeting with Twelve.

      • vegastearoom

        No where in The Caretaker, in that exchange, does he say it is not 12 that sulked on the otter planet. He says I sulked. No reason to believe it was 11.

        • ThePurpleFrockCoat

          Its still the same person whether its 11th or 12th. However 12th does not strike me as someone who sulks. 11th parked his TARDIS on a cloud for a long time so its most likely 11th who sulked.

  • Del Hart

    Love see the return of Capital Jack in this episode or next series bring back Torchwood in style and new team members. .. also return bring back the Valeyard and the Rani

  • Amber Mourglea

    Love that River is back. I agree Del Hart…would love to see Captain Jack return for an ep or two. 🙂